The Associated Press is reporting that the City of Chicago has threatened the organizers of an annual German festival, Christkindlmarket, over one of their sponsors. This sponsor, according to the City of Chicago, would be “insensitive to the many people of different faithsâ€¦ [and] contrary to acceptable advertising standardsâ€¦”
Was this sponsor the KKK? The World Church of the Creator? No. The sponsor was a movie studio, New Line Cinema. New Line Cinema sponsored the event (until their money was turned down because of the threats of the City of Chicago) with advertisements of the movie, “The Nativity Story”.
Predictably, the City tried to hide behind the “separation of church and state” doctrine. Skipping past the fact that the First Amendment requires institutional separation, not the purging of all things religious, the characterization of New Line Cinema as a religious institution is somewhat contrived.
Some of the movies New Line has put out include such religious classics as “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre”, “Snakes on a Plane”, the Austin Powers series, and “Blow.” New Line is a thoroughly secular company that produces movies that range from the pornographic, to the flippant gore, to children’s movies. They’ve decided to make a movie about the Nativity, an event that is indisputably consequential in the history of mankind no matter what you believe.
The City of Chicago could have had a problem sponsoring a festival called “Christkindlmarket” but they don’t. They could have a problem with the nativity scenes that take place in this festival, but they don’t because they include celebrations of other faiths. They had a problem that the included a small ad from New Line, who paid for it, for the movie “The Nativity Story”.
There is no outright religious imagery at all in that ad. No crosses, no mention of religion, only the name of a film the references the same event celebrated by Christkindlmarket.
There is no War on Christmas, the War is on Christians. Organizations such as the ACLU and the City of Chicago hold that they do not have the right to exist, to live their lives as they see fit, nor speak their mind in anyway where someone might overhear them. As was put on Captain’s Quarters blog, “they reject on culture in order to keep from offending others.” Diversity and multiculturalism means a certain culture needs to be purged from public view in the City of Chicago.
Even when Christians choose to create their own cities and live by their own rules, the ACLU brings out the big guns to stop it. If one in a hundred thousand pharmacists want to live by their conscience and not dispense pills to murder babies, Illinois issues “emergency laws” to stop them. It isn’t enough that 99,999 of 100,000 pharmacists would fill the script, it’s that there is one pharmacist out there who has values that need to be excised from society as if it were a cancer.
The City of Chicago’s decision has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with separation of Church and State or multiculturalism. It is censorship, pure and simple. It’s yet another declaration of war on Christianity’s right to exist.
John Bambenek is the Assistant Politics Editor for Blogcritics and is an academic professional for the University of Illinois. He is a freelance columnist who blogs at Part-Time Pundit and the executive director of The Tumaini Foundation which helps AIDS orphans in Tanzania with education. He is the current owner of BlogSoldiers, a blog-only traffic exchange.