Schools around the U.S. allow students to write to veterans each holiday season to inspire thankfulness in their students and offer a small kindness to local heroes, but cards made by students at a North Texas school aren’t welcome at their local Veterans Administration hospital.
Because of a new VA policy against religious cards and phrasing, most of those handmade cards will never reach their intended veterans.
Students at Grace Academy Prosper spent Friday making the cards they planned to hand deliver to bedridden veterans at the VA hospital in Dallas Monday morning, according to Fox News.
“I’m hoping that it might make their day because their family might live far away, and they might not have somebody to celebrate Christmas with and I’d like them to know they’ve not been forgotten and somebody wanted to say thank you,” said fourth grader Gracie Brown.
Gracie and her brother, Luke, put a lot of thought and effort into their Christmas cards.
“It includes ‘Merry Christmas,’ and when you open it up, it says ‘Thank you for your service’ and the American flag,” said Luke.
The cards were the idea of Susan Chapman, a math teacher at Grace Academy. She’s married to a veteran and volunteers with the American Legion and other veterans’ organizations. Chapman didn’t find out about the policy until she called Monday morning to arrange the distribution of the cards.
“I told him my students made cards, we’d like to bring them down for the veterans,” said Chapman. “And he said, ‘That’s great. We’re thrilled to have them, except the only thing is, we can’t accept anything that says ‘Merry Christmas’ or ‘God bless you’ or any scriptural references because of all the red tape.’”
An official with the VA later clarified the policy, which is in the Veterans Health Administration handbook, by stating the following:
“In order to be respectful of our Veterans religious beliefs, all donated holiday cards are reviewed by a multi-disciplinary team of staff led by Chaplaincy services and determined if they are appropriate (non-religious) to freely distribute to patients. The holiday cards that do not contain religious tones are distributed freely to patients across the Health Care System. We regret this process was not fully explained to this group and apologize for any misunderstanding.”
What? They’ve created a “multi-disciplinary team” to open and review (and censor) Christmas cards from children? So they are not only violating the 1st Amendment by discriminating against religion, but also the 4th Amendment, by opening the cards in the first place.
Here a video report of the disgraceful, religion-neutered VA under Barack Obama…