Judge Allows School To Hang ‘Charlie Brown Christmas’ Poster

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Kevin Daley Supreme Court correspondent
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A judge in Texas has ordered the Killeen Independent School District to allow a school employee to display a Charlie Brown Christmas poster on her office door, after district officials ordered her to take it down.

The poster included a Christian message emphasizing the traditionally religious orientation of the holiday.

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. … That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown,” the poster read.

District officials asked the employee, a nurse’s aide at Patterson Middle School named Dedra Shannon, to remove the poster. The matter was discussed by the school board Tuesday evening, which voted 6-1 to table a final decision on the issue to allow board members to study state guidelines before reaching a decision. (RELATED: Uproar Over Charlie Brown Christmas Ban At Texas School Continues)

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sued the district on Shannon’s behalf, hoping to secure an order protecting her right to display the poster. He argued the poster was protected by the state’s so-called “Merry Christmas Law,” which extends legal protections to the display of traditional holiday symbols in public schools, provided multiple religious and secular symbols are represented.

“To the contrary, Texas law prohibits KISD from expressing hostility toward religious messages, and it also specifically encourages school districts to take a more inclusive approach to religious and secular celebrations.,” the state argued.

The court sided with Shannon, but required her to include text at the top of her poster which reads “Ms. Shannon’s Christmas message.” The court hopes that the qualification will convey Shannon is speaking for herself, instead of promoting a message endorsed by the school district or the state of Texas.

“Religious discrimination towards Christians has become a holiday tradition of sorts among certain groups,” Paxton said of the ruling. “I am glad to see that the court broke through the left’s rhetorical fog.”

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