Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

ADL Critical of Christmas Stamps

October 10, 1972
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Anti-Defamation League has again decided to withhold its stamp of approval from the Postal Service’s annual Christmas offering. Paul Hartman, director of the ADL’s Law Department, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that the Postal Service has in recent years been sidestepping the church vs. -State problem through the "gimmick" of reproducing "art objects" instead of outright religious symbols on its Christmas stamps.

There are two such issues this year, to go on sale Nov. 10. One depicts Santa Claus under the words "Twas the Night Before Christmas"; the other shows a detail of a painting and the words "Christmas" and "Master of St. Lucy Legend/National Gallery of Art." Both are 8-cent stamps that will be sold "only to persons who specifically request them," according to the Postal Service, which adds that if this policy results in light sales they "may be placed on general sale, withholding other 8-cent denomination sheet postage unless specifically requested."

The ADL and other Jewish organizations have complained to the Postmaster General in the past about the Issuance of stamps with religious themes, Hartman said, but have "never been successful" because of the "art object gimmick." Hartman said the Jewish groups were again "considering" this year what action, if any, to take.

Recommended from JTA