Easter bunny booted out of St. Paul City Hall

Published 5:13 am Monday, April 10, 2006

By Staff
Even Fox's Bill O'Reilly wanted to know what was up in St. Paul, Minn., when the Easter Bunny got evicted from the City Council offices lobby.
Krenik said in an online forum posting. “What is next? Do we drop the St. Patrick's Day Parade because it is based on religious traditions?”
City Council President Kathy Lantry's office received 50 e-mails by lunchtime, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
Most blasted her decision to remove a banner, bunnies and eggs that incited visitors with, “Happy Easter.”
Human Rights Director Tyrone Terrill's voice mail was full from a hate-filled tide of e-mail.
It was Terrill who sent Lantry a message suggesting “it would be a good thing” to take down the Easter decorations lest a cloth rabbit and pastel-colored eggs offend some non-Christian.
The decorations belong to a secretary and were not purchased with city money. The secretary also decorated the lobby for fall, Christmas, Valentine's Day and, yes, St. Patrick's Day, for at least a decade.
Lantry said her decision was not about “being politically correct,” but that government shouldn't advance the cause of religion with Easter signs.”
Council member Dave Thune, who said “it's a shame” to remove the display, received an e-mail at 3:30 a.m. from someone in Singapore who read it online.
Dave, it might be the biggest overreaction in Minnesota since Whorehouse Days never happened.
Can you imagine how Peter Cottontail's floppy ears must burn from this buzz that hiding eggs for kids somehow made him a divisive religious icon?
On the other hand, there's now a nice clear spot on the lobby wall to put up a shiny new banner: “Check your common sense here.”
Judas betrayed?: A long-lost 300 A.D. document the National Geographic Society revealed April 6 suggests that far from being a villain, Judas Iscariot was the best friend of Jesus who only turned Christ over to authorities because asked.
The most significant archeological find in decades reports conversations between the two in their last week of their lives when Jesus confided religious secrets not known to his other disciples.
Early church leaders called the writing about 140 years after their deaths heretical because the Gospel of Judas conflicts with the conventionally accepted gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Most copies were destroyed, the Los Angeles Times reported.
In other faith news, a Florida State University oceanography professor, Doron Nof, suggested April 5 that a rare combination of atmospheric conditions may mean when Jesus walked on water, he stepped on a patch of ice floating in the Sea of Galilee, perhaps offering a scientific explanation for a miracle recounted in the Bible.
Praying for other people to recover from illness is ineffective, according to a study of 1,800 heart bypass surgery patients which found that those with other people praying for them had as many complications as those who did not.
In fact, The Washington Post reported, one group of patients who knew they were the subject of prayers fared worse.
The March 2003 novel sold more than 40 million copies exploring theories that Jesus married Mary Magdalene, had a child and that their bloodline survives, though most historians and theologians dismiss such notions.
Released in paperback last week, it quickly sold more than 500,000. A film starring Tom Hanks follows May 19.
Who figures this stuff out? On Wednesday, at two minutes and three seconds after 1 a.m./p.m., time and date read 1:02:03 04/05/06.
Apocalypse now: Hostess is publishing “The Twinkies Cookbook.”
Quips, quotes and qulunkers: “The smaller the market, the bigger the hair.
One local news reporter was doing a broadcast from a moving roller coaster.
On the hour, every hour, she screamed her report out. Was it news? I don't know.”