The War on Christmas is finally over for the people of the tiny, oil-rich nation of Brunei. The result? Well let's just say it's pretty bad:
The super-rich ruler of Brunei has told residents of his country that if they plan on celebrating Christmas, they could face up to five years in jail.In fear the the religious holiday will affect the faith of its country, the tiny oil-rich nation’s Sultan, Hassanal Bolkiah, has banned the public celebration of Christmas.
Any Muslims caught celebrating Christmas, and non-Muslims who are discovered organising celebrations, could face the lengthy prison sentence.
That's pretty damn bad, but it gets so much worse. Decorating for Christmas is now illegal as well. If you want to put up a Christmas tree, for example, and you live in Brunei, you better be prepared to face that lengthy prison sentence. Brunei's imams, though, have "generously" allowed for low-key, private celebrations of Christmas. How utterly tolerant of them.While non-Muslims are allowed to celebrate the holiday within their own communities, they must not disclose their plans to the nation's Muslims – which make up 65 per cent of the 420,000-strong population.
This decree is just the latest salvo in Brunei's War on Christmas. Last year state police visited several businesses that had decorated for the holiday season. These businesses were, let's say, "politely encouraged" to take down their Christmas decorations.
There are two points that I want to make here. First point is how secure is your religious faith that you feel threatened by the free expression of other religions? Brunei specifically banned public Christmas celebrations because the religious authorities were afraid it would affect the faith of the Muslim majority. Is Islam really so bad that its adherents could be led astray by Santa Claus? Will a good, orthodox Muslim see a Christmas tree and suddenly think "huh, Jesus IS the answer, screw Mohammed!" You don't see Christian majority nations banning Ramadan because the priests/pastors/preachers are afraid Christians will suddenly convert to Islam. Israel hasn't banned the Muslim call to prayer because the rabbis are worried about it affecting the Jewish faith. Yet in many Muslim majority countries we see this exact same reasoning behind banning other faiths. Again this begs the question why are Muslims so worried about people leaving their faith?
The takeaway from this is that there but for the grace of God go we. Everyone should look at Brunei banning Christmas and realize that America is just a few quick steps away from this exact same thing. Every year we fight our own War on Christmas over public displays of the season. We fight against atheists that hate religion, and especially Christianity. We fight against leftists that screech about "tolerance" while being completely intolerant themselves. Sometimes they win, sometimes we win, but by and large we are still allowed to worship in public how we please.
That could all change very easily, though. The price of freedom is eternal vigilance. All it would take for the Left's War on Christmas to be successful would be a few court rulings in their favor. Throw in a few more ultra-liberal Supreme Court justices, and you've got a perfect storm for the destruction of religious freedoms in America. "Oh please, that's just paranoid thinking," you say. "We have a Constitution that protects freedom of religion. There's no way the Left can win the War on Christmas!"
Since when has the Left let a pesky little thing like the Constitution stand in their way?
H/T Kemberlee Kaye at Legal Insurrection: Christmas Cheer Brings 5 Year Prison Sentence in Brunei