For ten years I worked in the thriving beach community of Santa Monica, California. Each year, during the month of December, I was blessed by the Menorah and the various Nativity displays that were lined along the thoroughfare in front of the Pacific Ocean. People came from all over the world to shop, soak up the beach, and gather their families around the various Holiday displays. It truly was a majestic experience.
Sadly, our experience was a bit different this year when an out-of-town Atheist group hijacked the displays.
Make no mistake, I wholeheartedly believe in (and will fight for) the Atheist’s right to free speech. They too have the right to include their version of a display (as seen below). However, tonight, the City of Santa Monica is voting to abolish the 60 year tradition entirely because of the controversy surrounding last year’s events. We need your help!
The excerpt below was taken from a letter we received from SantaMonicaNativityScenes.org. Your immediate help would be greatly appreciated!
The Santa Monica city attorney has recommended that the nearly 60-year-old Nativity Scenes display, the menorah and all other scenes be banned from Palisades Park at Christmas time. The city attorney has proposed an ordinance to this effect for the City Council to vote on at its Tueday, February 28, meeting. This change is unfortunate, unnecessary and a blow against free speech in a city that has long taken pride in being open to a diversity of opinion and public expression.
The only constitutional way the city attorney sees to continue the displays in Palisades Park is continuing the lottery to apportion spaces. Because the lottery proved controversial and cumbersome, the city attorney opposes that, and instead recommends abolishing all scenes in the park.We are seeking to have the agenda item postponed, but do not know as of this writing whether it will be. If you are in a position to do so, we would ask you to please write a brief e-mail to one or more councilmen supporting the Nativity Scenes and asking that consideration of the proposed ordinance on winter displays (7F) be postponed. You can find councilmen’s e-mail, telephone, and mail addresses on the S.O.N.S. page at our Website, www.SantaMonicaNativityScenes.org.The question for Council members to decide Tuesday is whether to capitulate to a small group of out-of-town agitators that want to censor the Santa Monica Christmas story and its message of love, joy and peace, or to direct city staff to undertake further serious effort to find a way to preserve this beloved tradition.
Join the S.O.N.S. Campaign: Save Our Nativity Scenes!
Here are three ways: to help:
1. Click Here to sign our petition.
2. Ask city officials to assure full space for this time-honored local tradition in a local park in 2012.
|City Manager||Ron Gouldfirstname.lastname@example.org||(310) 458-8301|
|Barbara Stinchfieldemail@example.com||(310) 458-8310|
|Mayor||Richard Bloomfirstname.lastname@example.org||(310) 458-8201|
|Mayor Pro Tempore||Gleam Davisemail@example.com||(310) 458-8201|
|Council Member||Bob Holbrookfirstname.lastname@example.org||(310) 458-8201|
|Council Member||Kevin McKeownemail@example.com||(310) 458-8201|
|Council Member||Pam O’Connorfirstname.lastname@example.org||(310) 458-8201|
|Council Member||Terry O’Dayemail@example.com||(310) 458-8201|
|Council Member||Bobby Shriverfirstname.lastname@example.org||(310) 458-8201|