What Fresh Hell Is This?

May 23, 2013

Elections Have Consequences

Sometimes good ones.

The Ellwood City Ledger's Eric Poole describes what's going on in Ellwood City regarding that Nativity Scene that keeps popping up (Note: there's lotsa names floating in Poole's paragraphs so I've bolded them all for clarity):
During a forum last month for Ellwood City Council candidates, David DeCaria appeared – at least in my estimation – to have talked himself out of a job.

In response to what might have been the biggest controversy of 2012, DeCaria said the borough was right to move the borough’s Nativity scene off the municipal building’s front lawn.

And let’s be clear about it, he didn’t dance around the matter the way council members Anthony “Lefty” DeCarbo and Judith Dici did by saying they would have liked to keep the display where it was, but a threatened lawsuit by the Madison, Wisc.-based Freedom From Religion Foundation forced the move.

DeCaria said the Nativity shouldn’t have been on public property in the first place because it violates the First Amendment’s establishment clause. He’s right about that, by the way. But saying it seemed like a sure way to lose a Republican primary in Ellwood City, not that he cared.
Conversely, had I been publicly handicapping Tuesday’s borough council primary vote, I would have thought Michael “Mundo” Parisi, probably the town’s loudest proponent for returning the Nativity to borough property, would have benefited from a stand that seemed wildly popular.

The night before Tuesday’s election, I told Jim Arkett, who advocated fighting those meddling atheists from Wisconsin, that I thought his support for the tradition would help him win a Democratic nomination.
And finally:
Arkett finished outside the crucial top four Tuesday and failed to get a Democratic nomination. Rocco “Rocky” Ierino, who lent his support for keeping the Nativity display on borough property, finished flat last among the Democratic candidates.

Meanwhile, on the Republican side, Parisi finished in next-to-last place, well behind DeCaria, who earned one of the four GOP nominations. DeCarbo and Dici won Democratic nominations.
Basically, lotsa folks who in one way or another want the unconstitutional nativity display on public grounds won't be on the ballot in the fall.  As Poole concludes:
Regardless of what happens in November, it’s a virtual certainty that the issue won’t be revisited next year when a new council takes office. And that new council might not be all that new. All four incumbents won nominations Tuesday.
Let's hear it for the Constitution and the Separation of Church and State in Ellwood City, Pennsylvania!

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