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rotorhead
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April 2, 2010 2:51 am  

Does anyone else think that the VI Government closing it's offices Thursday, Friday and Monday is a violation of church/state separation? Is this an illegal endorsement of Christianity? What about all of our Muslim citizens? What about the alcohol ban on Good Friday?

“ Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof... ”

See http://ffrf.org/legal/challenges/ffrf-wins-good-friday-state-holiday-challenge/


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Linda J
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April 2, 2010 3:16 am  

All governments close offices for all kinds of reasons. And yes, they do close for Christian religious holidays, Christmas comes to mind. But, of the days you mention, none is a religious holiday. To me, it's more like spring break for bureaucrats.


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fdr
 fdr
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April 2, 2010 8:07 am  

@Linda J -- in what way is Good Friday not a religious holiday? Please explain!


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STX46
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April 2, 2010 10:26 am  

It would be a violation of the right to camp if all offices did not close--it's not a religious holiday here, it's a recreational one.......


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Linda J
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April 2, 2010 10:30 am  

Almost every day in the Catholic calendar is a saint's day -- so are they all religious holidays? Easter, yes, Christmas, yes. Good Friday, not a holiday as I define holiday.


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poorthang
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April 2, 2010 11:25 am  

Oh no here we go again......:-(


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antiqueone
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April 2, 2010 12:26 pm  

I think it's pragmatic. Since most of us are Christians...at least in name....and folks here take a holiday at the blink of an eye, some wise government type realized that if they didn't make Thursday through Monday a holiday, they would be paying for people who didn't work. Everyone would either call in sick or take vacation days and those that did come in would be so disgruntled that their poor work ethic would get even worse. So....why not just close up shop for a few days instead? Remember, the second part of that amendment is "...or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

What happens in Saudi during Ramadan?


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rotorhead
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April 2, 2010 2:10 pm  

Why would a Good Friday holiday be legal here when the federal courts have already declared them illegal in Illinois and Wisconsin. Doesn't the US Constitution apply here?

Read the attached link.


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East Ender
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April 2, 2010 2:14 pm  

rotor: Are you going to take the VI government to court? If you would like to, have at it! 😉


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jay
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April 2, 2010 2:57 pm  

So, by having a government holiday......which religion is being established??? It seems to me, the religion already exists. And, who is not being allowed to express their religious rights by having that holiday??? Again, seems to me that more would be able to go express their religion by having the day off.....

Seems ok to me......I just do not see where the constitution says the government can not establish a holiday which celebrates something that already exists.


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Bombi
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April 2, 2010 3:12 pm  

It is just part of the culture, no worries.


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stiphy
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April 2, 2010 6:45 pm  

I would have a bigger problem if the government said that private businesses had to give religious holiday's off. I also do have a big problem with the idea of alchohol prohibition on certain religious days. I believe today is the only day in the VI where you can't sell alchohol during certain hours (can anyone else confirm)? The Blue laws in the states that prohibit businesses from opening on Sundays (the traditional Christian sabbath) and prohibit alchohol sales also seem to be ripe to be challenged.

Sean


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Bombi
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April 2, 2010 7:24 pm  

When I lived in the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico it was the same, no work from ash Wednesday to Easter second day.


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Jumbie
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April 2, 2010 8:13 pm  

The place to work, if you are lucky enough to work there, is in a gov't job. Heck you most likely won't work more than 9.5-10 months a year.

So this week people who are gov't workers didn't work Wednesday, (Transfer Day -Denmark to U.S), Thursday (Holy Thursday) & Good Friday, plus Monday is another gov't holiday; Easter Monday. Talk about taking it to the extreme on time off work; this week is a good example of celebrating religious, past historical events including cultural/historical traditions from U.S. French, Spanish, Dutch, Danish, British, or Knights of Malta.

As for alcohol being served on Good Friday --it is against the "law" to serve any alcoholic beverage before 4pm. If you are an owner & somehow the booze police happen to catch you serving alcohol prior to 4pm, you are gonna be fined big time.


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rotorhead
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April 2, 2010 8:23 pm  

There are no federal holidays for Easter. I guess the DR can do what they want but the US constitution declares it illegal to give preferential treatment to one religion over others. How can Good Friday not be a Christian religious holiday?

Good Friday legal holidays have been struck down in every state where they have been challenged. The state has been forced to pay the legal fees of the party who brought the challenge.


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Linda from Michigan
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April 2, 2010 9:04 pm  

So is using marijuana. But that's not allowed legally.


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antiqueone
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April 2, 2010 9:07 pm  

what are you, Rotorhead? A workaholic? What's wrong with having a holiday?


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beachy
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April 2, 2010 10:12 pm  

even the stock exchange in NY is closed for GF...and they don't close for much.


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Jumbie
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April 2, 2010 11:50 pm  

Well well me oh my, the gov't found a reason to allow beer & wine sales today Good Friday because there was 3 big cruise ships into STT with about 6400 passengers on board. Bottom line the DLCA couldn't turn down $$$ on the sales of wine or beer to a bunch of tourists on STT. Isn't it amazing what drives decisions & interpretations of the supposed legislative law on these islands?


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Juanita
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April 3, 2010 1:10 am  

Does anyone have a clue why Good Friday is dry 'till 4:00. I was at Kmart earlier, and they had the liquor section taped off, with a sign that said no sales until 6:00. I also was in F'sted today, and driving home passed a convenience store where a customer was walking out with 2 beers in his hand (unopened, if that matters).

Why GF but no other religious holiday?


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Linda J
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April 3, 2010 10:51 am  

Beer and wine were ok, but no hard liquor. Why? Because.


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STX46
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April 3, 2010 10:57 am  

I believe it is based on the alcohol content--under 16% is OK.


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Juanita
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April 3, 2010 12:00 pm  

The funny thing is everyone has a different opinion or interpretation. For instance, my husband was not allowed a beer at lunch, at a restaurant in F'sted.


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Edward
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April 3, 2010 1:47 pm  

When I was growing up in Philadelphia in the 1930s and 40s, "Blue Laws" prohibited, among other things, the showing of movies and professional sports events on Sundays. These laws were thrown out in later years.

The Pledge of Allegiance was amended in 1954 to add the words "under God." This is, by any reasonable definition, a violation of the establishment clause of the First Amendment. But the Supreme Court, with its religious bias, refuses to throw it out.

Courts have also declined to rule out "In God we trust" and military chaplains.

The Supreme Court will continue its irrational position until it has a majority of members who are not religious zealots.


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East Ender
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April 3, 2010 3:17 pm  

The Good Friday law states "distilled liquor" which has been variously interpreted by DLCA over the past few years to be hard (distilled) liquor only or to include beer and wine also. I don't think anyone has ever challenged the law and at least they say they are going to get legal clarification for next year.


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