A member of Governor Blunt’s staff has kindly forwarded us a copy of Governor Blunt’s directive to Missouri department directors:
From: Governor Matt Blunt
To: Department Directors
Date: December 4, 2006
Re: “Merry Christmas”
Last year there was a great deal of public discussion regarding the Christmas season. Specifically, we heard from those who believe that the Christmas break should be called by a non-religious name such as “Winter Holiday.” They also argued that traditional Christmas greetings such as “Merry Christmas” should not be used.
Missouri state government employees should not have to worry about this matter. To ensure that there is no confusion regarding our state policy I am directing that each of you inform all members of your department that they should feel at ease using traditional holiday phrases, including “Merry Christmas” and they should have no fear of official reprisal. I also ask that you inform your staff that the objections of those who are offended by these phrases be given due consideration, but that no state employee will be reprimanded or in any way disciplined for saying “Merry Christmas.”
This holiday season should not give state employees reason to feel as though they must check their religious views at the door of a government building. Instead, it is my hope that each state employee enjoys the holiday season with full confidence that their government exists to preserve their liberty rather than constrict it.