Athens Review, Athens, Texas

Opinion

January 11, 2013

Enough already, Mr. Greene

Athens — We were not surprised to hear reports that San Antonio atheist Patrick Greene has once again dropped a lawsuit related to the Nativity scene placed on the Henderson County Courthouse lawn each Christmas season.

In fact, we expected it.

Greene has been threatening legal action and filing lawsuits since his name became attached to the controversy regarding the Nativity scene — which earned international attention in 2011 when the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation tried to have it removed from the courthouse square.

Last February, Greene filed a complaint with the State Commission on Judicial Conduct against County Judge Richard Sanders after Sanders failed to remove a county commissioner who said the Nativity scene was only going to be taken down in one of two ways — “after Christmas, or when hell freezes over.”

Greene backed off, citing a health scare that potentially could have cost him his eyesight. Christians reached out in support, including members of Sand Springs Baptist Church in Athens, sending money to assist in the cost of medical care. The response initially led Greene to proclaim a newfound faith in Jesus Christ, but he later reneged and accused those sending money of trying to “buy him off.”

Last December, Greene — representing himself — filed a lawsuit in Bexar County against the City of Athens. His claim? That the city, by providing funds to Keep Athens Beautiful, was “instigating an atmosphere that gave the public the impression that government gave preference of one faith over all others.” Light Up Athens, which installs and takes down the Nativity scene each year, is a committee under the KAB umbrella.

Greene withdrew the suit after learning that Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott had asked for a copy of the suit.

A few weeks ago, he turned his crosshairs back on Sanders by filing another lawsuit in Bexar County — this time saying the county judge abused his position by giving private citizens permission to display the Nativity scene.

But earlier this week, he withdrew that suit, as well, saying he’s turning his attention to other legal matters not related to the Nativity scene, Athens or Henderson County.

Greene’s actions lack sincerity of purpose and smack of an attention-grab. We’ve grown tired of the charade, frankly, and don’t even want to imagine still wrangling over the Nativity scene in May when we’re corn-dogging it up at the Old Fiddler’s Reunion.

Our county and city officials — while standing firm — have extended to Greene courtesy and patience. Our church congregations have showed him uncommon kindness rooted in their faith.

We acknowledge everyone hasn’t been so courteous to him — including whoever reportedly carved the word “evil” into a doormat near his apartment. We condemn such mischief, for which there is no justification.

However, there also is no justification for Greene’s repeated, pesky efforts to harass the hard-working and honest people in our county.

Enough already, Mr. Greene. We’re moving on.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • 4-12 Rich mug.jpg Meal time for kitties can be an adventure

    I believe God gave us housecats because we didn’t have enough to worry about. They are puzzling little puffs of fur that seem to be constantly developing new sets of peculiarities.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG I've got my rib back!

    Much has changed since Jan. 19, 2008.
    Bruce Almighty, Man on the Moon, Major League – gone.
    Complete rooms decorated with sports memorabilia – gone.
    More than a dozen trips to catch baseball in Arlington – gone.

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG Exhausted, but happier than ever

    Wow, what a rush!
    I can not begin to explain the emotions I experienced on Monday, March 17 as Maylee Grace Wilson made her debut.
    Yes, there were tears.
    Yes, this “Iron Man” showed the emotion he hoped and prayed for.
    Over the two weeks I was home with Maylee and my wife Lacie, I experienced a plethora of emotions - emotions rather rare in my life.
    As expected, there was little sleep at the hospital. With the way Maylee acted her first night, I thought I might be able to catch a little shut-eye once we got home.

    April 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • Joe new mug.jpg Music helps deal with life’s situations, good or bad

    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow once said, “Music is the universal language of mankind.”
    With music, it can help us deal with tragic situations, help us deal with the loss of a loved one, make us want to dance, make us want to sing along to the words, or help us calm down after a long day of work.

    April 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • kathi New  copy.jpeg ‘Small town, USA’ has advantages, disadvantages

    Living in a small town can have its advantages and disadvantages. For me, personally, I love “Small Town USA.”
    Some disadvantages possibly are: if you do something out of character, everyone will know by tomorrow morning; everybody tends to be related, so watch what you say;  limited resources;  it's not easy to broaden your horizons; and driving more than 50  miles to the nearest mall.

     

     

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jeff's mug.jpg A habit in a society and in a home that should stop

    It was Tuesday that I was walking back to my car on the Walmart parking lot, when a business acquaintance of mine who comes to the Review office sometimes, stopped her car in front of me to say hello.
    I noticed her doing something that happens at almost any moment she is around, without the office surroundings.  She had a cigarette in her hand.

    March 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • RICH-USE THIS ONE.jpg TVCC Lady Cards add to school’s winning legacy

    When I came to work in Henderson County in 1991, the Trinity Valley Community College Cheerleaders had already picked up a couple of national titles. Coach Connie Russell had the team doing things few had ever seen cheerleading squads do. Russell retired after winning five times on the national stage.

    March 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG Let’s all follow Tom’s lead

    My first-born child is here and there is a hero for her to admire already.

    March 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • COLUMNIST.jpg Giving businesses choice is not legalizing discrimation

    The bar owner was blunt. A couple of weeks ago, he announced that people of a certain persuasion would not be allowed into his establishment.
    To demonstrate his seriousness, he had head shots printed of those who are not welcome to make sure that his security team would deny them entry.

    March 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG I am Iron Man, the suit and I are one

    The suit is damaged, it might not hold up this time.
    Like many men, I have hidden my emotions behind a suit of armor for years.
    Happy, sad, excited or mad – my external emotions were never displayed.
    In some ways that was a good thing, but in others...

    March 8, 2014 1 Photo

Biz Marquee
AP Video
Tributes Mark Boston Bombing Anniversary Raw: Kan. Shooting Suspect Faces Judge US Supports Ukraine's Efforts to Calm Tensions Suspect in Kansas Shootings Faces Murder Charges Ukraine: Military Recaptures Eastern Airport Raw: Storm Topples RVs Near Miss. Gulf Coast NASA Showcases Lunar Eclipse Pistorius Cries During Final Cross-Examination The Boston Marathon Bombing: One Year Later Michael Phelps Set to Come Out of Retirement First Women Move to Army Platoon Artillery Jobs Sex Offenders Charged in Serial Killings Police: Woman Stored Dead Babies in Garage OC Serial Murder Suspects May Have More Victims Family: 2 Shot in Head at Kan. Jewish Center Raw: Horse Jumping Inspires 'Bunny Hop' After Attack, Officials Kill 5 Bears in Florida Popular Science Honors Year's Top Inventions ND Oil Boom Attracting Drug Traffickers