In the December 7 issue of the New York Times, there was a story about White House social secretary Desirée Rogers. In it, reporter Sheryl Gay Stolberg wrote: “When former social secretaries gave a luncheon to welcome Ms. Rogers earlier this year, one participant said, she surprised them by suggesting the Obamas were planning a ‘non-religious Christmas….’”
This same participant said that “the Obamas did not intend to put the manger scene on display” (this was confirmed by the White House). Indeed, as Stolberg wrote, “there had been internal discussions about making Christmas more inclusive and whether to display the crèche.”
Unlike almost all Americans—including atheists—the Obamas do not give their children Christmas gifts. We know this because the president boasted about it in 2008 to People magazine. So it should have come as no big surprise that the president and the first lady would like to neuter Christmas in the White House. That’s their natural step—to ban the public display of Christian symbols. Have any doubts? This past April, Georgetown University was ordered to put a drape over the name of Jesus as a condition for the president speaking there.
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. We know one thing for sure: no other administration ever entertained internal discussions on whether to display a nativity scene in the White House.