This week on Facebook
"So the city moved the Nativity display off of public property (after 75 years), because some one complained. In previous years they constructed a Buddhist altar on JFK plaza for Khmer New Year. Many of times Khmer New Year falls during Catholic Holy Week, I'm fasting while my neighbors celebrate. City and state parks are used for days for religious festivals. Who ever complained be consistent! http://library.uml.edu/clh/cam/Cambw2.htm"
Monday, February 17 2007 on my old blog "Up On Christian Hill"
Culture rather being something of one’s identity is something to one does for the entertainment of others.
One of my favorite shows is Globe Trekker on PBS. I’m a cultural junkie and I love documentaries, but Globe Trekker though is more then a documentary it encourages tourism. Back in the day documentaries preserved the people way of life, but the basis of Globe trekker is to actually have individuals who know little to nothing to visit these places as an experience. I honestly feel that tourism doesn’t preserve culture, but exploits and mocks it.
Customs and traditions are not for the original intent within the community, but to be performed at the delight of individuals.
Lowell prides itself on culture, it even has a National Park to preserve culture and yet we can't find any creative option to allow the Nativity on public property, as an expression of religious freedom. For many our culture is inherently tied to our religious belief, including and protecting the lack of religious beliefs. All or nothing, if 'all' then that includes religious expression. Yes, even baby Jesus gets a spot on public property.
* I understand where the City Solicitor's situation. She is just telling Council what is allowed and not allowed by current cases. My statements are a personal view, not a legal analysis of current case law.