THE CRECHE CRUSH
Once and for all, did the Nativity creche get left out of the White House “holiday” decorations? The entire twinkling array took 92 volunteers a total of 3,400 hours to set out, and the mix includes a Bo Obama replica and a 400-pound gingerbread house.
When The New York Times indirectly revealed on Dec. 6 that President Obama and his family were planning a “non-religious Christmas” sans Nativity scene, critical reaction was swift.
“The Obamas would like to neuter Christmas,” says Catholic League President William Donahue. “If the Obamas want to deprive their children of celebrating Christmas, that is their business. It is the business of the public to hold them accountable for the way they celebrate Christmas in the White House.”
Messing with the creche is not wise, says Tim Graham of the Media Research Center: “This goes in the same file folder of holiday bumbles as the plans to cut the White House Hanukkah party guest list in half.”
But let us now cut to the chase. The Nativity scene is in its traditional spot in the East Room, and the White House is emphasizing the “universality” of the Christmas message. The United Nations climate summit, however, is an official Christmas-free zone. No Tannenbaums, no Kris Kringle, no nothin’ — though the global warming extravaganza will include motocross racing, a fashion show, an official “Copenhagen” cocktail and gender studies.
As for the numbers, A Zogby poll released Dec. 8 revealed that 81 percent of Americans plans to put up a Christmas tree.
President George W. Bush has “a clear legacy,” the head of his foundation says, and it is “freedom, oppor tunity, responsibility and compassion.”