Secular Decoration Adorns Statehouse Alongside Christmas Tree

Dec 11, 2013

There’s a new Christmas decoration at the Statehouse this year.  And it’s anything but traditional.

The 2013 Christmas tree in the Rhode Island Statehouse.
Credit Flo Jonic / RIPR

Secularists have placed a banner on the second floor of the Statehouse to celebrate the birth of Rhode Island founder Roger Williams. He was born December 21st, 1603.  The banner was erected by a group called the “Humanists of Rhode Island.” 

According to its website, the banner is intended to be a counterpoint to the various religious displays now scattered throughout the Statehouse and to serve as a reminder that American government is secular by nature and design.

Steve Ahlquist, the president of the humanist group, says Roger Williams would have been appalled by the controversy over whether to call the Statehouse conifer a Christmas or a holiday tree.

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