Editorial – Secular humanism can be taken to extremes during the most sacred of holidays

Mac Olsen

Those who follow religious belief systems should not have to be fearful or apologetic if they wish to celebrate them in public places – and that includes Christmas carolling at commercial locations.

After coming across a story in the National Post, I have to question whether secular humanism gets taken to extremes that are unnecessary and even harmful to society as a whole.

As per a story by Nick Faris published in the National Post on November 19, the Pine Centre Mall in Prince George, B.C. decided to allow the group to perform, ‘Mary’s Boy Child’ and ‘Go tell it on the Mountain’. The mall’s policy is that it has to be non-partisan and non-sectarian.

But prior to that, Neil Wilkinson, a captain for the Salvation Army’s Prince George chapter, became nervous about the mall’s management and ended the event prematurely.

“I chose to shut things down before it compromised any relationships the Salvation Army has in the community,” said Wilkinson.

However, the mall management said the two songs “constituted traditional Christmas music” and were permissible forms of expression.

Yet, it’s a very sad state of affairs for Canadian society when someone from a religious Christian and humanitarian organization has to become fearful of offending other people’s sensibilities – or those of business interests. I would find it very hypocritical for a mall or other commercial property to allow the sale of Christmas gifts, including religious Christmas cards, but not permit those who have Christian beliefs to express them through singing at those locations.

Last year, a live Nativity Scene was held at the Gazebo by the Falher IGA, which is on commercial property. As I look at the National Post story and think back to that Nativity Scene, I am pleased that the issue of being ‘non-sectarian’ and ‘non-partisan’ didn’t come up for it.

Moreover, I applaud all municipal/government offices, post offices and hospitals that allow Christmas Trees and Nativity Scenes on their premises. They are upholding the spirit of the season and affirming the rights of all Christians to express themselves accordingly.

And let children at public schools continue to sing out the songs and spirit of Christmas. It’s bad enough that bible reading over the PA system and the Lord’s Prayer have been forced out of public schools. But don’t allow secular humanism to be invoked to remove Christmas concerts from public schools.

And anyone who wishes to call it the “Holiday Tree” instead of the “Christmas Tree” is also invoking secular humanism and political correctness.

In the end, be wary of secular humanism and the words ‘non-sectarian’ and ‘non-partisan’, as they are tantamount to suppressing Christian values.


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