December 12, 2006

Sick Transit Gloria

The Christmas madness continues. According to news reports, the Seattle-Tacoma ("SeaTac") Airport came up with a novel solution to a rabbi's complaint that the airport's holiday display -- a group of large Christmas trees -- should also include a Hanukah menorah. The airport's solution? Scorched earth. Instead of adding a menorah, they removed all the Christmas trees. This led to threats against the rabbi, a bit unfair considering that the rabbi had never asked for the Christmas trees to be removed. After numerous complaints, airport officials returned the trees, and agreed to figure out a better solution next year.

According to one news report, "Airport managers believed that if they allowed the addition of an 8-foot-tall menorah to the display, as Seattle Rabbi Elazar Bogomilsky had requested, they would also have to display symbols of other religions and cultures, which was not something airport workers had time for during the busiest travel season of the year." No kidding. Did SeaTac's managers get stuck in a time warp back to 1962? Had they learned nothing during the past 20 or 30 years precisely about being sensitive to "other religions and cultures?" At a time when our troops are caught in the middle of a war of "sectarian violence" in Iraq, with targets painted on their backs?

Wasn't I talking about this just yesterday?


At 1:32 PM, Blogger Aileen said...

So what's the answer? Do we try the "melting pot" method and come up with a generic version of celebrating everyone's holidays? Is that even possible? Does that lose the true flavor of different cultures and religions?

At the company I used to work at, we worked so hard at being politically correct that we ultimately ended up banning any sort of decorations for any holiday. True, we didn't offend anyone that way...but we also dampened overall morale.


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