The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

State News

February 4, 2014

'Merry Christmas' bill passes Indiana Senate

INDIANAPOLIS — Christmas might come a little earlier this year for some Hoosiers after state senators unanimously passed a bill to allow holiday celebrations in schools.

The legislation would allow schools to decorate with Nativity scenes or menorahs if paired with a secular symbol or one from another religion. Legislation also would permit schools to teach the history of winter holidays and to give holiday greetings, such as "Merry Christmas."

Ten other states have proposed similar laws.

The Indiana branch of the American Civil Liberties Union says the bill would be unconstitutional and would allow public schools to endorse religion.

Bill author state Sen. Jim Smith of Charlestown says it's necessary because Christmas is "under attack."

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