Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Presidential Christmases

Anyone interested in how Presidents speak about Christmas can consider the documents in this list (all 846 of them, from Hoover through GWB in 2004). If you’re in Texas, you might want to see this exhibit. In D.C., there is of course this. If you’re in Illinois, this is the place to be. The Jimmy Carter Library and Museum has been there and done that, as has its GHWB counterpart.

Any teacher out there who wants a resource on White House Christmases, could do worse than downloading this.

Update: The list of Presidential documents doesn’t show up in the link (curses!). But if you do a keyword search for "Christmas" you can generate it on your own.

Update #2: Alan Cooperman has more on the Bushes’ "holiday" card this year. Here’s a White House photo essay and Laura Bush’s remarks at a holiday press event. There is a Bible verse in the White House card, taken from Psalm 28. Folks who are better connected than I am (Peter? Steve?) may know the precise verse (I have my own guess), but the whole context is nonetheless interesting:

Psalm 28


Of David.


1 To you I call, O LORD my Rock;
do not turn a deaf ear to me.
For if you remain silent,
I will be like those who have gone down to the pit.


2 Hear my cry for mercy
as I call to you for help,
as I lift up my hands
toward your Most Holy Place.

3 Do not drag me away with the wicked,
with those who do evil,
who speak cordially with their neighbors
but harbor malice in their hearts.

4 Repay them for their deeds
and for their evil work;
repay them for what their hands have done
and bring back upon them what they deserve.

5 Since they show no regard for the works of the LORD
and what his hands have done,
he will tear them down
and never build them up again.

6 Praise be to the LORD,
for he has heard my cry for mercy.

7 The LORD is my strength and my shield;
my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.
My heart leaps for joy
and I will give thanks to him in song.

8 The LORD is the strength of his people,
a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.

9 Save your people and bless your inheritance;
be their shepherd and carry them forever.

Last Update (I promise): And the winner is...
Ps 28:7.

Discussions - 7 Comments

I’m happy that the White House card has the wise words from the Bible but I am still bothered that it only says "Happy Holidays’. What is going on here? What do you reccammend folks do to change this situation Mr. Knippenberg?

Yeah, Mr. Knippenberg, what do you reccammend? This is a grave threat we’re dealing with, after all! To me, the most serious problems our great nation is facing would be: terrorism, a possible looming economic crisis, taking Christ out of Christmas, and the avian flu.

They’re all connected if you ask me. The terrorists want to weaken us by getting Christ out of Christmas (they’ll replace him with the baby Mohammed, I bet), which will hurt sales of nativity scenes, weakening the economy. Then they’ll hit us with those vials of Avian flu they’ve got stored up over there in the Middle East. Only a good old-fashioned Jesus, Mary and Joseph Christmas can save us now!

Time to start laying off the high-test egg nog, St. Nick!

I read somewhere that the neocons are having menorahs put up all over Iraq. Does anyone here know if that’s true?

I’m actually most concerned right now about the giant jellyfish, which might be equipped with nuclear weapons by the North Koreans.

Actually, I’ve heard that the giant jellyfish is the work of the Bavarian Illuminati. Don’t let them immanetize the eschaton!

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