Controversy continues today over the Nutter administration's request that the German Christmas Village in Dilworth Plaza remove the word "Christmas" from archways at the entrances to the market -- which was first reported by the Daily News on Tuesday. (Read today's Daily News story here.)
Councilwoman Joan Krajewski will tomorrow introduce a resolution in City Council calling on the city to respect citizens who celebrate Christmas. Several members yesterday said they'd sign on to the resolution, including Council President Anna Verna, Councilwoman Marian Tasco and Councilman Curtis Jones Jr.
"It's big national news," Verna said. "By 9 a.m. this morning, I had emails from Hawaii."
Tasco said she suggested to the mayor that he open up the area around City Hall for other religious groups to set up shops or displays.
Here's Krajewski's press release and the resolution, which is modeled on "The Night Before Christmas."
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 1, 2010
COUNCILWOMAN KRAJEWSKI INTRODUCES “THE CHRISTMAS RESOLUTION”
Outraged over the removal of the word, “CHRISTMAS” from the entrance to the German Christmas Village outside Philadelphia City Hall, City Councilwoman Joan L. Krajewski plans to introduce a Resolution in Philadelphia City Council calling on the City of Philadelphia to remember and respect its citizens that do celebrate Christmas.
“I’m outraged and so are the citizens who have been calling and emailing my office over this disgrace,” said Krajewski. “When does it stop? A few people complain because they do not celebrate Christmas and we immediately have to censor it and take it down?”
Krajewski said she knows the resolution can not force the City of Philadelphia to reinstall the word CHRISTMAS back on the sign but she wanted to make her point clear.
“There is nothing wrong with wishing anyone a Merry Christmas. It’s a Federal holiday celebrated by billions and yet we here in Philadelphia removed it from a sign, a sign that advertised a German Christmas village that the whole point of the venue was to sell, Christmas trees, Christmas stockings, Christmas gifts all to the tune of Christmas music being performed and surrounded by Christmas decorations all over the place. Did we uninvited Santa Claus too?”
For the City of Philadelphia to remember and respect its citizens that do celebrate Christmas
Whereas, T’was a month before Christmas, and all through our City, the Christmas spirit was being censored, it was quite a pity; and
Whereas, The lines were out the door for Macy’s Christmas Light Show, with over 65,000 lights-who wants that bill from Peco?
Whereas, In Dilworth Plaza, the City plans their 17th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting celebration, however something wasn’t right in the political correctness calibration, and
Whereas, It seems complaints forced the word “Christmas” to be removed from public view, because the birth of Christ, offended a few, and
Whereas, No thought was given to the 2.1 billion Christians in the World who celebrate Christmas on the 25th of December, because it’s the few who complain that we have to remember,
Whereas, No prayer in schools and “Merry Christmas” or “God Bless You” is prohibited, forget a Nativity Scene and the Ten Commandments can’t be exhibited, and
Whereas, Maybe we have to celebrate Christmas in secret, so we don’t get condemned, stop showing our faith, because we must not offend,
Whereas, Center City was decorated for Christmas with boughs of holly and lights, as businesses braced for the Black Friday retail fistfights,
Whereas, And on the apron of City Hall, in the shadow of the German Christmas Village, the meaning of Christmas, was being attacked and pillaged,
Whereas, Even though vendors sold Christmas Trees and Christmas stockings, Christmas ornaments and Christmas music played, the simple word “Christmas” could not be displayed, and
Whereas, For the Christians in Philly who felt shock but took this in strife, we don’t need an illuminated sign to celebrate the birth of Our Lord, Jesus Christ., and
Whereas, For those who don’t celebrate Christmas, you’re entitled to your rant, but in 1870 it was designated a federal holiday by Congress and President Ulysses S. Grant.
Whereas, In conclusion by disregarding and disrespecting Christians and their most sacred holiday -Christmas, there’s a message we must send,
Whereas, Do what you must, but you can’t take the Christ out of “Christmas”, Amen.
And now therefore be it, Resolved by the City Council of Philadelphia, That Christmas be celebrated and respected, honored, recognized and remembered by the City of Philadelphia.
JOAN L. KRAJEWSKI
December 2, 2010