Letter: San Antonio atheist calls for anti-nativity rally in Athens

Posted by : Staff Reports | On : February 9, 2012

Dear Editor,

My name is Patrick Greene. I live with my wife of 33 years Karen. We live in San Antonio. Mr. Richard Riehn wrote a letter to the editor on Dec. 20th last year, defending the Nativity scene and how Thomas Jefferson and the Founding Fathers were Christians and would defend it. Apparently Mr. Riehn has never heard of the book The Jefferson Bible: The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth. Jefferson rewrote all four gospels and removed every miracle that was in them. He did not believe the miracles happened. Jefferson never publicly spoke about his religious belief. However he was definitely not on the side of those who support the Athens Nativity scene.

I saw the Youtube video of the rally last December. It was completely Christian in nature, making the entire display a violation of the U.S. Constitution.

On Friday December 21, 2012, there will be a protest rally in Athens, Texas, to protest the Nativity scene on the grounds of the County Courthouse. This rally will insist that a sign be prominently displayed with the Nativity scene, stating that the government of Henderson County does not support nor endorse the Christian religion. Capitol Square Review Advisory Board v. Pinette 515 U.S. 753 (1995) is a case in point, where the Nativity scene is Constitutional, but because of the speeches last year at the rally, specifically pointing out the purely Christian content and intent of the Nativity scene, there must be a sign posted that the display is not endorse or supported by any governmental entity.

Patrick Greene
San Antonio

Comments (15)

  1. Sharon Brown said on 22-02-2012

    Good reading. Please get educated on church and state separation. Christians, we have nothing to worry about. Oh and by the way the Constitution does not mention church and state separation.


  2. dilberth said on 17-02-2012

    I don’t live in Henderson County, (thank goodness) but the Commissioner Joe Hall, is a scoundrel and a reprobate. The word “obstinate” is written all over his forehead. He is even more stubborn than my mule.

    • Robert said on 17-02-2012

      Yep, thanks for noticing that Joe Hall is a true TEXAN. If you ever happen to figure out just where Henderson county is and how to get here, you will find most of us have the same qualities and proud of it.

  3. Patrick Greene said on 17-02-2012

    Ever since Henderson County Commissioner Joe Hall made his comments on December 8, 2011, on a television interview, that this is a “Christian” country, and it would be a “cold day in Hell before I will personally vote to remove the Nativity scene”, his neutrality ended. He has violated his oath of office by publicly stating that his religious views effect his voting. That makes the Nativity scene a violation of the Constitution.
    The lawsuit will be filed the day the Nativity scene is displayed………..unless they find private property to display it on……….like a church property.
    If you wish to discuss this matter, you can send an email to

    • Joel Knox said on 17-02-2012

      I don’t need to discuss this matter any further with you. The fact that you would concern yourself with the matters of a county official some 200 miles from where you live says plenty about you. This matter is NONE of YOUR business. You can make it YOUR business by moving to Henderson County and becoming one of its citizens. Then you can give Joe Hall all the hell you want to. Until you do, nobody in Henderson County gives a flip about what you have to say.

  4. Joel Knox said on 13-02-2012

    I love how people who have likely never set foot in Henderson County feel like it is their right to tell everyone who lives there how to conduct their day to day business. I take an interest in Henderson County because it was my childhood home, just like it was for many members of my family. I don’t think it’s any of my business to tell anybody who lives there now how they should behave. I certainly don’t expect them to care what I would have to say about what they do, either.

    So, as far as Mr. Greene or anybody else is concerned, mind your own business. Nobody in Henderson County wants to hear what you have to say.

  5. Patrick Greene said on 12-02-2012

    I have decided, after thoroughly researching the legal aspects of the Nativity scene more fully, that I will file a lawsuit against Henderson County, if they display the Nativity scene this year, without putting up a prominent sign next to the scene, stating that no government entity in Texas endorses or supports any religious faith.
    If anyone has any comments for me, you can contact me at

    • David Sr. said on 20-02-2012

      I live in Athens Tx Heanderson County and I along with everybody here support the NATIVITY SCENE. JESUS is LORD of ALL. LORD of HEAVEN and earth for he is HOLY.What he did at Calvary for us is beyond words.His LOVE will endure forever and all that believe in him shall be saved.Amen

  6. Angela said on 11-02-2012

    Interesting that someone from San Antonio feels the need to come here Wonder how he would like it if we drive down there and have a rally?

  7. […] Story No. 3 – Anti-nativity rally scheduled?: Is February too early to start gearing up over the inevitable nativity scene controversy? Apparently not. A San Antonio atheist wrote a letter to the editor to local newspapers calling for an anti-rally on Dec. 21. Why it is important: The nativity controversy made Athens a household topic across the country last December … and it looks like it is going to happen again. Learn more: The Malakoff News posted Patrick Greene’s letter. […]

  8. Joe said on 09-02-2012

    December 21, 2012
    What else is happening that day? Oh, that’s right, it’s the end of the world.
    I think the rally will be preempted.

  9. george ferrante said on 09-02-2012

    No man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burdened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer, on account of his religious opinions or belief; but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish, enlarge, or affect their civil capacities.
    Thomas Jefferson
    Do you have history books in Texas?

    • Susan Shipley said on 14-02-2012

      George Ferrante, Please explain further as to whose defense you are coming to. Depending on your perspective, this could be interpreted in favor of both those for and against. Read it again out loud taking into account not only your belief in the meaning behind this statement but again with an unbiased view of those coming from the opposite side of your view.

      Thank you.

  10. Kevin Stites said on 09-02-2012

    If the San Antonio atheist does not like what is happening in Henderson County he can stay in San Antonio .

  11. Todd Weaver said on 09-02-2012

    Just my opinion: I guess he just needs to get his Christmas holiday decoration approved before he’s allowed to put it up. Signs being posted are nothing more than advertisements and I don’t think they are allowed there are they? I don’t think Christians can post signs and advertisements there either? I’m sure he can put his sign on any available billboards around town or post them in the newspaper. Signs and advertisements are not the same as decorations comemmorating a holiday and anybody posting advertisements or messages ususally has to go through that type of media. As far as his protest rights; Get it approved as a lawful and peaceful protest and I’ll stand next to him and support Mr Greene on his right to peaceful protest. I hope he will bring some food and money donations for the local food pantry too and help feed and support our needy. Hunger doesn’t care what spiritual background you come from.