The controversy surrounding the holiday came to a head this morning when students arrived to find all the holiday decorations taken down after a campus club protested the one dimensional theme of the decorating.
The first to protest the decoration take down was 17-year-old senior Tori Compton who started the Occupy Christmas protest at the high school this morning. Prior to learning that the decorations would be going back up Compton said, “We’re protesting the fact that the decorations had to come down.”
“We feel we have a right to say we’re offended at not having a Christmas tree,” said Compton.
“We’re stoked that the decorations are going back up,” said Danica Sheets when Principal Gary Jensen made the announcement that an agreement had been reached. “We were threatened with suspension and arrest because of the protest.”
According to the school's ACLU club membership wanted more decorations representing a wider range of religious and cultural traditions. The letter made it clear the club did not want the decorations taken down.
Jensen met with the school’s Leadership class Monday morning to try and determine how the class members could incorporate other religions in their decorating scheme.
“The leadership class chose to take everything down because they didn’t want a religious theme,” said Jensen. “We had a healthy discussion at the leadership class.”
According to Austin Carr, a member of the Leadership class, the decision to take the decorations down was made because the students weren’t sure what they were legally required to do, but once the legal cases used to set precedent were understood the group felt they could put decorations up in a way that was both festive and legal.
“We had to take them down because we didn’t have full knowledge,” said Carr.
conducted by Benicia Patch showed that a majority of those who voted wanted to add the new decorations rather than take all the holiday symbols down.