A judge recently ruled that Christmas trees aren’t religious symbols and a menorah is, and thus won’t be displayed at a holiday display in California.
U.S. District Judge Beth Labson Freeman, of San Jose, used a Supreme Court ruling to decide that Christmas trees are not religious symbols in a case centered around whether or not a school ceremony should allow a menorah, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
- The judge ruled that the menorah is considered a religious symbol in several contexts. But a Christmas tree — based on the Supreme Court ruling — should not be considered as such.
Per the San Francisco Chronicle, the judge said officials at Carmel River Elementary School — who decided that including a menorah may be an unconstitutional endorsement of religion — were right in their decision to limit the use of the menorah for that very reason.
The mother of a student at the school, Michelle Lyons, filed a lawsuit after the school’s PTA disqualified the Lyons family from letting their child bring a menorah balloon for the holiday ceremony since it didn’t fit into a paper lunch bag, according to KTVU.
- The Lyons family was not satisfied since it’s difficult to fit a menorah balloon inside a paper bag, according to Forward. Lyons decided to file a suit, arguing the event violated First Amendment’s Establishment Clause and the separation of church and state.
- Lyons has decided to drop the suit and to display the menorah balloon at her home across the street from the school.