Menorahs, Star and Crescent, but No Nativity? Catholic League Sues New York's Education Holiday Policy

December 11, 2002

Source: The Associated Press

On December 11, 2002 The Associated Press reported that "New York is discriminating against Christian students by allowing Islamic and Jewish holiday symbols to be displayed in public schools while banning Nativity creches, a Catholic organization suing the city charged yesterday. 'All we're asking for the city of New York to do is to treat Catholics the same way they do Jews and Muslims,' said William Donohue, president of the Catholic League. 'This is nothing but pure, unadulterated religious discrimination.' The Thomas More Law Center argues in the lawsuit that the Department of Education holiday policy is unconstitutional because it permits Hanukkah menorahs and the Islamic star and crescent as secular symbols but prohibits scenes of Jesus' birth in a manger as religious. The lawsuit, filed on Dec. 9 in Brooklyn federal court, was brought on behalf of Andrea Skoros, a Catholic League member who has two sons at the Edith K. Bergtraum School in Queens. It lists the department, schools Chancellor Joel Klein and principal Sonya Lupion as defendants."