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It’s Christmas time again,
but the devil must have his First Amendment “rights”.

by Christopher A. Ferrara
December 22, 2016

Under the American regime of First Amendment liberty, the State may take no action for the defense of truth against error in matters of religion or morality.  The idiotic modern notion of liberty is that everyone “has the right to be wrong,” even the right to advocate the murder of children in the womb or “marriage” between members of the same sex.

Ah, but not when it comes to money!  The absurdity of our free speech regime is demonstrated by a simple example: Someone who tells lies about the value of a commercial product, inducing people to part with a few dollars, may be subjected to civil and even criminal penalties for consumer fraud, including a jail term.  But someone who tells lies about God and His Law, inducing people to abandon faith and morals with eternal consequences infinitely worse than any loss of mere money, has an absolute “constitutional right” to do so. 

Worse, it is the one who interferes with the promulgation of errors that are deadly to the soul who faces the penalties of the law, including imprisonment. 

Nowhere is this preposterous regime more obnoxious than at Christmas time. In Boca Raton, Florida, for example, a local TV station reports that between a Christmas tree and a Nativity scene, which are part of a “holiday display” on public property, a Satan-worshipper has erected a “large pentagram display reading: ‘In Satan we trust’, ‘Celebrate Winter Solstice’ and ‘Hail Satan, Not Gods.’”

The author of this atrocity is one Preston Smith, a teacher for the Palm Beach public schools — part of the system of public education that operates as a vast seminary of conformity that churns out obedient drones who repeat robotically the slogans of political modernity, such as “everyone has the right to be wrong” and “what is true for you is not necessarily true for others.”’

And under our regime of unbridled “freedom of speech” there is not a thing anyone can do about the satanic display on public property in Boca Raton or anywhere else. As the Supreme Court has made clear in Lynch v. Donnelly (1984), the display of a Nativity scene on public property may be tolerated only if it is part of a “holiday display” along with other holiday symbols, such as (in that case) plastic reindeer, or (in this case) a satanic display calling for celebration of the Winter Solstice. Such mixed displays, the Court concluded, have a “secular purpose” that does not violate the First Amendment’s ban on government “establishment” of religion.

In a later case, however, County of Allegheny v. American Civil Liberties Union (1989), the Court ruled impermissible a Nativity Scene inside the county courthouse with a banner that read “Glory to God for the birth of Jesus Christ,” which was lacking the requisite plastic reindeer and other neutralizing symbols such as a Christmas tree or Menorah. But the Court, stroking its collective chin, decided that a display outside the courthouse featuring a Menorah, a Christmas tree and a sign celebrating Liberty was sufficiently secular in purpose to pass constitutional muster.

In short, the State may not favor Christ over Satan at Christmas time.  Nor may it permit any Christmas display that might actually convey the message that Christ is God Incarnate and the Savior of those who believe in Him, or that Satan is the embodiment of evil whose works must be renounced. God and the devil have the same “rights” under the First Amendment.

Of course, we know the final outcome of this insanity: When good and evil are placed on equal footing before the law, evil will prevail in civil society. That is what Leo XIII warned in 1888 in his landmark encyclical on the true nature of human liberty:

“If unbridled license of speech and of writing be granted to all, nothing will remain sacred and inviolate; even the highest and truest mandates of natures, justly held to be the common and noblest heritage of the human race, will not be spared. Thus, truth being gradually obscured by darkness, pernicious and manifold error, as too often happens, will easily prevail.

Pope Leo described the very situation in which the once Christian west now finds itself: evil has triumphed while the truth is denounced and even criminally prosecuted as “hate speech.” And our political and even religious leaders act as “mindless cheerleaders” for the very madness that is destroying our civilization and leading to the eternal shipwreck of countless souls.

The Mother of God foresaw it all.  That is why She came to Fatima to secure the conversion of Russia and the triumph of Her Immaculate Heart.  As we approach the centenary of Her epochal appearance on earth, however, we can only dread the looming consequences of the failure of the Church’s leadership to heed Her urgent requests.