Fox & Friends Invoke Chuck Norris Over Religious Diversity in Our Public Schools

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For Chuck Norris, World Net Daily columnist, alleged actor, and frequent, if unintentional, comedian, it’s all about the Christians. Unfortunately, that means it’s not about anybody else.

In an op-ed penned for Fox Nation on Tuesday, Neutering Religious Holidays, Norris complained, “We haven’t even hit Thanksgiving, and already the war on Christmas is underway.”

Well, to be fair, the shelves in stores are already full of Christmas merchandise, so it really isn’t out-of-season to declare an early war on Christmas. I mean, technically speaking.

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But Norris lamented that “our country is heading down a slippery slope,” and that “one of the largest public school systems in the U.S. is eliminating every mention of religious holidays on its official calendar.”

“We have to stop it before it is too late.”

What Norris is upset about is that,

The Montgomery County Board of Education in Maryland has cut Christmas and Easter, as well as Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashana, from next year’s school calendar. No religious holiday will be mentioned by name.

To be fair, MY religious holidays don’t even make it onto a school calendar, for example, Winter Nights, a three-day celebration during which, traditionally, many weddings took place.[1] There are other religions, larger than mine, similarly affected by a widespread state of neglect. To be fair, our holidays ought to be added to the calendar, or all others removed.

And this is sort of what a concerned Muslim family wanted, as Norris admits:

NPR reported on the origin of the decision: “The path to the board’s decision started about two years ago on something that was somewhat unrelated. Members of the county’s Muslim community — roughly estimated at around 10 percent of the more than 1 million population — were seeking to have two of their religion’s holy days added to the calendar of days off. They wanted Eid al-Adha the most.”

Fair enough, I’d say. What use Christian holidays to non-Christians, and vice versa? Norris here misses the point that the number of Muslims doesn’t matter. The point is, not everybody in the district – let alone the state or the country – are Christians. Other religions have the same rights and protections as Christianity.

That may offend the Chuck Norrises of the world, but it’s a fact.

But remember, for Norris, the only religion is HIS religion.

In any event, instead of adding some Muslim holidays, the school board voted to remove all religious holidays, which greatly vexed Norris:

The students will continue to get the same religious days off, but there will be generic references to them, such as “winter break.” Board members have even gone so far as to reinterpret the historical recognition of the holidays by saying that the days off are not meant to observe those religious holidays.

To be fair, the historical recognition of the holidays is a bit iffy at best anyway, as I mentioned above. Besides, much as I would like to see my holidays recognized, I have to admit the school calendar would get a bit unwieldy if Muslim, Hindu, Pagan, and other holy days began to crowd the calendar already filled with Jewish and Christian. And let’s not forget the dread Festivus for the rest of us that so frightens Gretchen Carlson.

Besides, it’s an issue of fairness. Perhaps the best thing to do IS to simply remove all mention of religious holidays. And that’s what, the school board’s president, Phil Kauffman, said:

“The best way to accommodate the diversity of our community is to not make choices about which communities we’re going to respect in our calendar and which ones we’re not going to respect.”

Chuck Norris wants only Christian holidays respected, however. He is not pushing for the inclusion of other religions and their holidays, so his claim to be a champion of religious freedom falls rather flat, likewise his insistence that “religious neutering” is more about “endors[ing] secular progressivism” than that “religious diversity,” he himself is so clearly opposed to.

But Norris wants to know where President Barack Obama is while all this religious diversity is going on:

And where’s our president when these Christian and Jewish references are being erased from civic calendars? Is he crying out in defense of religious liberty and our First Amendment? Nope. He’s as silent as a church mouse, just as he’s been for the past six years on any such matter.

As Media Matters for America has helpfully pointed out, President Obama has not been silent about religion, or about his own personal faith. It’s just that Fox News refuses to listen to, or report on, such expressions of faith, as when earlier this year, at Easter, he talked about the suffering of Jesus.

Oh, well that was terribly inconvenient. But that’s okay, we can just pretend he never said that.

Along with President Obama’s Christmas address last year, in which he said,

“So many people all across the country are helping out at soup kitchens, buying gifts for children in need, or organizing food or clothing drives for their neighbors. For families like ours, that service is a chance to celebrate the birth of Christ and live out what He taught us – to love our neighbors as we would ourselves; to feed the hungry and look after the sick; to be our brother’s keeper and our sister’s keeper.”

Oh dear. Now that IS inconvenient. He even called Jesus “the Christ.”

Norris, who is a big Reagan-fan yet consistently gets Reagan wrong (a common disease among Republicans of today), invokes Reagan:

Let us never forget that there was once a time in the U.S. when people and even presidents weren’t afraid to stand for traditional values and encourage others to do the same.

Case in point, President Ronald Reagan, in his 1981 Christmas address, televised and on the radio from the Oval Office for the entire nation and world to hear, said: “At this special time of year, we all renew our sense of wonder in recalling the story of the first Christmas in Bethlehem, nearly 2,000 years ago. Some celebrate Christmas as the birthday of a great and good philosopher and teacher. Others of us believe in the divinity of the child born in Bethlehem, that he was and is the promised Prince of Peace. … Like the shepherds and wise men of that first Christmas, we Americans have always tried to follow a higher light, a star, if you will. At lonely campfire vigils along the frontier, in the darkest days of the Great Depression, through war and peace, the twin beacons of faith and freedom have brightened the American sky. At times, our footsteps may have faltered, but trusting in God’s help, we’ve never lost our way. … So let this holiday season be for us a time of rededication. … Tonight, in millions of American homes, the glow of the Christmas tree is a reflection of the love (of) Jesus. … Christmas means so much because of one special child.”

The whacky thing is that yesterday, Fox News turned this poorly reasoned op-ed into news, with Fox & Friends’ Elisabeth Hasselbeck and her cohosts reading she calls it Norris’ “fiery op-ed” aloud, saying, “Chuck Norris’ point was, remember the time when American presidents weren’t afraid to talk about traditional values, as Ronald Reagan did back in 1981”:

The real newsworthy thing is that Norris is also the guy, who in 2009, insisted that, “If this thing [healthcare reform] passes the government will have the right to come into our home, and regulate how we raise our children.”

That obviously hasn’t happened. But I guess invoking St. Ronnie is a lot more fun that admitting you lied about the benefits of the Affordable Care Act, an effort, not coincidentally, in which Fox & Friends was complicit.

And as a final thought, imagine if the school district had simply added the Muslim holidays. Imagine the outcry then. We would be talking about a different, if equally divisive, column today.

Norris, and Fox & Friends, can’t get over the idea that America is just for white Evangelicals. This whole episode is not about an imagined war on Christmas, but a simple recognition of a changing ethnic and religious demographic in our country.

But come on, let’s get this over with. We have big religious holiday coming up and we’ve got a lot of work to do if we’re promote a spirit of diversity of belief, rather than a potentially state- and certainly a Fox-sponsored religion that represents only a portion of America.

Notes:

[1] Winter Nights marks not only the beginning of winter (and thus the dark half of the year) but the beginning of the ritual year. It runs 3 consecutive days and falls on the first full moon following the autumn equinox. During Winternights, cattle were slaughtered and consecrated to the gods to cull the herds for winter (a practical matter if you want to have food to eat during the winter, given the absence of grocery stores back in the day), and sacrifices made to Freyr, and toasts “to prosperity and peace for the year.” As mentioned, this was a big time for weddings take place, as well as a good time to consult a seeress about what the coming year will bring, which was probably a more accurate forecast than any provided by Fox News.

21 Replies to “Fox & Friends Invoke Chuck Norris Over Religious Diversity in Our Public Schools”

  1. Chuck “Bore-us” Norris is just trying to sell more Total Gyms during the corporate holy daze.

    Buy nine for yourself, friends & family plus one for Jesus, tithing (Holy Tax) is important ya’ know.

  2. To hell with Christmas and since that’s my birthday, the hell with that too. See I am a equal opportunity a-hole

  3. does anybody remember hearing anything from Chuck Norris when children in schools are killed? That might be something pertinent. The president is not here to defend Christianity. Especially our current version of Christianity.

    Which brings me to my next point. Anyone who thinks his religion is the only religion, doesn’t really have a religion at all. He has selfishness,fear and greed and that’s just about that

  4. First off, Andrew being a “White Evangelical Dude” do you in fact speak out against the idiocy and hatred that evangelicals have for other religions and races and sexual preferences?! Do You!? You claim you’re not like them but until you speak out then you are just like them. A good customer of ours and a sweet lady had us print shirts for a family vacation going to Chuck Norris Lake, I explained some things about ol’ Chucky that most don’t know. She gave my information a good deal of thought and came to the conclusion that in fact the man is a complete idiot. Her family is not a bigoted hypocritical family so it was easy to make her understand.

  5. I have pointed out before that I am a devout Catholic. I also have a brain, which it appears that people like Norris and others of his ilk don’t.

    My faith is not dependent on what it says on a calendar. It is not dependent on how much or how little it is talked about in public.

    My faith is internal and I am secure in that faith. I don’t believe I or my faith have all the answers and I have examined it and reexamined it many times over the years. It is not static. Oh, the most basic of my beliefs don’t change all that much, but I do have the ability to look at the realities around me and make adjustments.

    People like Norris obviously look at Christianity (or other faiths if they belong to a different bloc) as fragile and , like Tinkerbell, likely to die out if enough people don’t clap loud enough.

    Basically they are insecure in their faith and consequently in themselves.

  6. While I do not agree with Chuck Norris’ religious views, I do believe in accuracy. FYI, Mr. Norris is no longer promoting Total Gym.

    For you to make that untrue accusation detracts from the credibility of the real issue, freedom from religions oppression by the christian crazies.

  7. Having personally known Chuck Norris when I was a member of his international martial arts association, the United Fighting Arts Federation, I will go on record as saying he is one of the most straight-arrow people I have ever known.

    He always speaks from sincere beliefs and never from personal or political convenience.

    Having said that, he is also dead wrong about his religious and political views. He is sincere about what he says, but sincerity does not make one right, only honest.

  8. In terms of religion, the number of Jewish people is very very small when compared to christians and islam. Happily, the number of fundamentalists is also small, but they influence both major religions

  9. Well James you have my sincere condolences in knowing such an complete fraud. You must either be ignoring the obvious out of shame or sheer misguided pride. Because it is a HISTORICAL FACT that Chucky runs his ignorant mouth about Religion, Politics and Social issues from a standpoint of Conservative Extreme Christianity at every chance. And with every chance he bashes GOOD people and praises the trash that seeks to destroy our democracy and place in power a Theocracy bent on Christian Law of order. Get your head out of the sand Jim,you have been duped! You see the Chucky either you want to see or the face he presents in public to DUPE people like you. You have had too many blows the cranium it’s obvious.

  10. Hey, Chucky — shut the f**k up before I make you do my laundry and serve me my beer wearing a dress, you old b***h.

    Remember, folks — this is the clown who, in 2008, told Obama publicly that he needed to “remember his PLACE”.

    Wah-wah, boo-hoo, christian holidays are off a school system’s calendar; what’s next, kids have to pray by themselves between classes? OH WAIT, we already have that. Good.

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