Practically Speaking

Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.

Madison's "Censored" Tree

Common sense, Government / Bureaucracy, Holidays, Religion, Truth, WISCONSIN

Last year, the State Assembly had to fight to get the Capitol Christmas tree called just that, a CHRISTMAS tree. In our culture, if it were not for Christmas, whether you celebrate it as religious holiday or secular, why else would you cut down a tree and bring it indoors?

This year? We are again calling that indoor tree something other than what it is. This year, it is The CAPITOL tree:

Yes, that silly, contrived, and seemingly interminable argument over the nomenclature of the conifer that’s erected in the Wisconsin Capitol Rotunda every December looked to be settled last year, at least for awhile, with the official legislative relabeling of the garlanded Tannenbaum as the Wisconsin Christmas Tree.

On Monday, though, the office of Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle issued a press release dubbing it the "Capitol Tree.

This is sickening. Calling it a Christmas Tree does not violate separation of church and state in any way. Separation of church and state is one of THE most misunderstood* concepts we have. As it is interpreted today, there is nothing in our Declaration of Independence, Constitution, or Bill or Rights that would prohibit any government agency from calling a tree decked out in lights and ornaments what it is, A CHRISTMAS TREE! But that is another subject for another day.

Today, it is just the absurdity of calling an this object a Capitol tree rather than what it is. But then again, it is Madison. 

So, do I wish you a Merry Capitol?

*The question about the separation of church and state's origin was missed by most on that Civics Test.

Fellow Blogger Tom Gehl wrote about the Church and State issue last year: Church and State - part 1 and  Church and State - part 2

Please, comment content should relate to the subject of the post. Although I try to respond to many, do not interpret my lack of a response as agreement.



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