Just in case you were considering the local post office as one of the stops on your caroling route this year, think again. It would be a violation of USPS rules.
A group of carolers dressed as characters from the classic tale A Christmas Carol popped into a post office in Silver Springs (Montgomery county) Maryland recently and were told to leave by a manager. And there was no indication they were singing off-key. It’s just that the USPS does not permit public assembly inside any of its branches. In the words of USPS spokesperson, Laura Dvorak:
[T]he carolers . . . were in violation of the Postal Service’s rules on public assembly and public address. Inside the post office, however, the expectation is that public assembly will be either conducted or sponsored by the Postal Service.
This has caused quite a bit of stir on the Internet in the past few days. Some groups say this is all part of a larger scheme to de-emphasize Christmas and eliminate “anything remotely connected to anything religious” during the holidays (a.k.a., the “war on Christmas”) despite all the Christmasy — even religious-themed — stamps available this time of year.