How you can balance or protest holiday displays on public property



FFRF has produced a variety of Winter Solstice displays to balance nativity displays at public forums. (Scroll to the end to see banners. We also have many of the red “no gods banner.) With the gracious help of artist Jake Fortin and our Chicago chapter, FFRF has been excited to unveil our new 4-by-5.5 foot aluminum cutout display, suitable for outdoors, depicting a “Bill of Rights nativity.” (See graphic on right. An explanatory sign comes with it, scroll to end to view.) This irreverent scene depicts the Founding Fathers paying homage at the birth of the Bill of Rights (in a manger). The Bill of Rights was adopted on Dec. 15, 1791, making this display seasonally suitable to balance December devotionals.


If you’re interested in ensuring there is “room at the inn” for the nonreligious point of view in a local governmental public forum, FFRF may be able to provide you with a banner or outdoor display. It’s helpful to hear from you as soon as possible, so that we can ship items to you in a timely fashion. We have limited supplies of banners and “Bill of Rights nativity” metal cut-outs, which will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. Although we can provide some tips on how to post and secure outdoor displays, we rely on you as the local activist to do the legwork. Ideally, you will be making a commitment to retain the display throughout the year and repost annually, as appropriate.

We prefer to ship once you have your permit or a bona fide application. FFRF’s legal department unfortunately does not have the time to personally assist every interested member in applying for a permit, but we are pleased to provide backup support if you run into obstruction, or if you’re unsure whether there is a bona fide public forum giving you the right to post your own display, etc.

A national conservative Christian movement seeks to put a Christian nativity display in every state capitol. If you live in a capital city where this is happening and you’d like to help balance or protest such displays, we can provide special assistance.


Not every nativity scene or menorah displayed on governmental property is part of a public forum. An unfortunate U.S. Supreme Court decision permits governmental bodies to host some religious displays, on a messy, fact-dependent basis. Please check our FAQ, Religious Holiday Displays on Public Property, for a discussion on whether a religious holiday display violates the First Amendment. If you encounter such displays, please report the violation via FFRF’s online form. Photographs, descriptions of any other displays in the area, signs, or disclaimers, and other pertinent information helps FFRF act more speedily on your behalf.

If interested in volunteering to erect one of FFRF’s Winter Solstice “equal time displays,” please contact [email protected].

Some of the displays that may be available:


Bill of Rights “nativities” (4 foot x 8 foot)


Bill of Rights Explanation Sign. Attaches to Bill of Rights ‘Nativity’ – screws in, and/or permanently attaches with foam masking tape. Easy to do. (12” x 22”)


Freedom From Religion Foundation