Catholic League president William Donohue commended four major department stores in New York for wishing their Jewish patrons Happy Chanukah, but questions “why these stores, and others, have such a hard time wishing Christians Merry Christmas” when Christians represent the majority of the population.
Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, Lord & Taylor and Saks Fifth Avenue extended their Chanukah wishes in ads, appearing in yesterday’s New York Times.
“The latest Newsweek poll shows that 84 percent of Americans are Christian; Jews represent less than two percent,” said Donohue, noting that the Christian population in the U.S. is 12 percent greater than the percentage of Jews in Israel. Yet, he says, in the U.S., “it is Christmas, not Chanukah that is considered controversial to celebrate.”
Donohue points out that menorahs, for example, are allowed in places like New York City public schools, but nativity scenes are banned.
He commended the religious displays at Chicago’s Daley Plaza, which include Christian, Jewish and Islamic symbols.
“So Happy Chanukah to our Jewish brothers and sisters,” he said in a statement. “We look forward to the day when Merry Christmas rolls off people’s lips with the same degree of alacrity.”