Saskatoon city council 1, local atheist 0: Holiday greeting on buses to stay

Human rights commission will not hear 'Merry Christmas' bus complaint

It must be tough for atheists to get around during this time of year.

Storefront signs demand they enjoy their Christmas and strip them of their right to enjoy the day for non-holiday reasons. The mall Santa Claus infringes on their rights as a consumer.

Now, even public transit systems have turned against them.

The Saskatoon StarPhoenix reports that a local atheist has complained to city council that "Merry Christmas" messages posted on city bus LED signs make him feel unwelcome.

[ Related: Saskatoon ho-ho-holds off on dropping transit Christmas greeting ]

Ashu Solo claims that the messages excludes religious minorities and atheists who do not celebrate the holiday. Saskatoon councillors reportedly took less than five minutes to decide to keep the message.

One assumes the complainant will find the bravery to continue riding the bus, but he has warned that a complaint to the human rights commission is forthcoming.

Add this to the list of absurd complaints being heard by our human rights commissions. While you are at it, add this one, by an albino woman taking umbrage with the name of a beer.

There always seems to be a few new "war on Christmas" cases raised each year, and this bus message debate is this season's best. At least going forward, those who declare war on those who declare war on Christmas will have a ride to the battlefield.

The National Post points out that the Merry Christmas message is among 10 pre-programmed messages on the bus system's LED signs. Others include "Happy Holidays", "Go Riders Go", "Bus Full Another Coming Soon" and "Help Your Neighbour Clear the Snow".

If any of those messages should be considered discriminatory, it is "Bus Full Another Coming Soon" — it is literally telling people they are not welcome to board the bus.

[ Related: Saskatoon mayor asked to stop prayers ]

The second-most discriminatory message must be "Help Your Neighbour Clear the Snow". What gives transit officials the right to demand we do anything of the sort?

What if a physical ailment or chronic laziness stops us from assisting in such as way? How dare they!