‘Concerned parents’ label elementary school’s holiday concert a form of bullying

According to the Missoulian, kids in kindergarten through third grade performed “Joy to the World,” “Up On a House Top,” “Jolly Old St. Nicholas,” “O Christmas Tree,” “O Come Little Children,” “Deck the Halls,” a Polish lullaby (with lyrics that serenade baby Jesus), a Hanukkah song, a pinata song, a Nutcracker song, and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”

The fourth and fifth graders in the afternoon sang “Season of Bells,” “Dreidel Spins,” “Good Christian Men Rejoice,” “Merry Merry,” “Jolly Old St. Nicholas,” and “Go in Peace.”

“Every year, there will be some kind of complaint about the Christmas music,” John Combs, the school district’s fine arts director, told the Missoulian. “We hear it from both sides. It’s too secular or it’s too sacred. There’s always something wrong with it.”

“I’ve learned in the years I’ve been doing this that you can’t win,” he said.

“If someone is really upset at singing a song, nobody makes them do it,” Combs added, according to the Daily Mail.

If the threatened lawsuit by the unnamed parents materializes, it would face substantial legal hurdles according to David Cortman, an attorney who specializes in the First Amendment at Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative-leaning nonprofit.

“It doesn’t create a constitutional crisis to sing Christmas songs at Christmastime,” Cortman told the Daily Mail. “If every time there was a piece of art or classical musical with a religious theme, we censored it, we would be eliminating much from the students’ education.”

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