The elementary school that I went to has recently been in their local news after the principal ordered that a Holiday Giving Tree be taken down after two families complained that it was a religious representation inside the school. The organizers of the tree commented that they were surprised, as they had intentionally left the tree devoid of any ornaments that could be considered religious.
In fact, the "Christmas Tree" was originally a pagan symbol used to celebrate new life. The church has adopted the Christmas Tree as a religious symbol, but in 1989, the Supreme Court said, "The Christmas tree, unlike the menorah, is not itself a religious symbol. Although Christmas trees once carried religious connotations, today they typify the secular celebration of Christmas." Furthermore, the Supreme Court and numerous lower courts have held that nativity scenes and menorahs may be displayed on government property without violating the constitution.
So, really, the principal shouldn't have removed the "Holiday Giving Tree" in the first place, even if it had been called a "Christmas Tree". But that's not the point of this post--the thing that's really interesting about the whole situation is that the "secular holiday symbols" the principal is allowing are candy canes, snowflakes, and snowmen.
Here's the funny part--do you know what the historical significance of the candy cane is? The curve symbolizes a shepard's staff, and they were originally given out to children at church services as a way to remember Jesus as The Good Shepard.
I'm sorry...I just think the whole situation is pretty hilarious.