The Archdiocese of Washington has filed a lawsuit against the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority because the WMATA reportedly refused to allow the Archdiocese’s Christmas advertisement to be displayed on transit vehicles.
According to The Washington Post, the WMATA alleges that the ad goes against company policy, which states, "Advertisements that promote or oppose any religion, religious practice, or belief are prohibited."
However, the Archdiocese believes the WMATA is restricting their freedom of speech and maintains that the ad "conveys a simple message of hope, and an invitation to participate in the Christmas season."
The ad shows a group of shepherds walking up a mountain and encourages Metro and bus passengers to visit a church this Christmas season. This is part of the Archdiocese’s annual initiative during the holidays, called findtheperfectgift.org.
Ed McFadden, Secretary for Communications for the Archdiocese of Washington, explained the case in these terms, making reference to the beloved holiday classic “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”: "To borrow from a favorite Christmas story, under WMATA’s guidelines, if the ads are about packages, boxes or bags … if Christmas comes from a store … then it seems WMATA approves.”
"But if Christmas means a little bit more,” McFadden continued, “WMATA plays Grinch."
Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons
Publication date: November 29, 2017