According to Patrick Cronin of the Hampton Union (in Hampton, New Hampshire), Bryan Lafond just wanted to go to his school dance. The seventh grade student of Hampton Academy Junior High School thought it might be fun to go dressed as Santa Claus.
When he arrived at the dance, Fred Muscara, the interim principal, stopped him at the door. Dressing as Santa is, apparently, politically incorrect. Why? Let’s let Muscara explain that for himself:
“It was a holiday party,” the principal told Cronin. “It was not a Christmas party. There is a separation of church and state. We have a lot of students that go to Hampton Academy Junior High that have different religions. We have to be sensitive to that.”
First of all, the notion of a separation of church and state merely prevents the state from adopting an official religion. Dressing up as Santa at a holiday party doesn’t exactly qualify.
And furthermore, if Muscara is concerned that Santa is inextricably connected to Christmas, then one might well ask exactly which holidays are being celebrated at the “holiday dance”? Presumably Christmas, Chanukkah, and, I suppose, Kwanzaa. So what’s the problem?
But even more to the point: Santa is part of the secular celebration of Christmas — not the Christian religious day. Recall that there were no elves in Bethlehem.
What we have here is yet another example of a hysterical secularist leaping at any hint of religion — even when the offense isn’t remotely religious.