To the Editor:

Attention Sherman residents, the way we have celebrated the Christmas season for decades may now be over.

Over? Why, you may ask.

Following the recent complaints of five Sherman residents, five out of 3,581 or 0.14 percent, the Board of Selectmen went to the town attorney to ask, can the town put up the cross on the silo at Happy Acres Farm?

They were advised against it, since the town now owns the farm and we need to separate church from state.

When I asked First Selectman Clay Cope why not just do it and let the chips fall where they may, I was told the Board of Selectmen had to follow the lawyer's advice.

I then told him when I was a member of the board, we didn't always follow the advice we received and somehow the town survived.

The way I see it, if the board forbids the cross on the silo then they would have to forbid many other things in town.

There would be:

No Christmas celebrations of any kind at the school;

No sunrise service at the beach;

No Christmas carol sing at the ballfield;

No prayers at the Memorial Day parade;

No Pledge of Allegiance at town meetings ["under God"];

No meetings or celebration with any type of religious overtones in or at any town-owned properties such as the school, Mallory Town Hall, the firehouse, Charter Hall, the Scout house, the senior center and the playhouse, to name a few.

While I don't want to see any of this happen, the Board of Selectmen, with but a single brushstroke, has taken away the Christmas that our town has come to know and love over the last 212 years.

The taxpayers of Sherman voted to purchase the farm to keep it just the way Tony Hapanowich had and here, only one and a half years after his passing, we are changing his ways.

I, along with many other longtime Sherman residents, are quickly becoming ashamed to say that we live in Sherman.

Are we 3,581 residents of Sherman, minus the five who complained and the three selectmen, going to stand by and let this happen?

I think and hope not.

I am asking all to storm the Board of Selectmen with phone calls, emails and personal visits to voice your displeasure. Save the cross. Thank you.

Gary Albert

Sherman