BERLIN: Outdoor Christmas decorations banned because they might offend Muslims

131444-viDon’t expect to see Christmas lights, Christmas trees, or other Christmas decorations in one part of Berlin, Germany, even on private property, after officials in the Kreuzberg district banned the  display of anything that celebrates the Christian holiday – because Muslims might be offended.

th_760232b1f2007a2-viWND (h/t AtomicSpud) “Why should religious festivals be celebrated in public?” asked Social Democratic Party Councilor Martin Becker, according to the German news site MMNews.de. The censorship was supported by the left-wing councilman as a response to demands by Muslims in the district that they be allowed to celebrate the end of Ramadan in the streets. Due to a fear of noise complaints, council officials decided that the best solution was to ban all religious festivals from being publicly celebrated in the district.

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Members of the center-right Christian Democratic Union, who currently are the largest party in the national parliament, and Christian leaders in Berlin have decried these developments as a revival of atheistic practices that were mandated by the communist regime of East Germany, according to a report published in Der Tagesspiel.

“I feel there’s a tendency towards irreligion in the district,” the CDU parliamentary leader, Goetz Mueller, stated to the Berlin news source.

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Peter Storck, a local Protestant church leader, was even more critical in his response to the developments in Kreuzberg, which he sees as outright discrimination against religious individuals. “State neutrality towards religion and the church should not be misunderstood as ‘freedom from religion,’ this requirement is rather a policy of totalitarian states,” Storck declared.

Kreuzberg is an area renown both for its counter-cultural reputation and as a prime destination for Turkish immigrants. A third of its population is composed of immigrants and the most popular political party in the district is the far-left Green Party.

So, I guess this means there will be no burqa tree this year?

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