Tree name ignites controversy in US

2011-12-06 22:43

Providence - Some Christian groups are enraged over a US state governor's decision to call the state's official Christmas decoration a "holiday tree".

The Roman Catholic church and others are offended. An hour after Governor Lincoln Chafee lights the official tree, state Republican Representative Doreen Costa intends to light what she is calling a "Christmas tree" outside her legislative office in protest.

Several past Rhode Island governors have called the official evergreen a "holiday tree" to be more inclusive of those who do not celebrate the Christian holiday.

Chafee's event also features Santa Claus and a specially decorated tree honoring the US military.

There has been debate since the founding of the US over how separate religion should be from government. Some Christian conservatives see de-emphasising or altering Christmas traditions as a rejection of their beliefs.

Read more on:    us  |  religion

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