Internet megacorporation Google has become famous for its use of themed doodles on the homepage of its search engine to highlight holidays, historical figures or causes. So on Easter Sunday 2013 it is no surprise that Google has chosen to honor a figure who led a movement that lifted untold number of souls and inspired many people to hope for a better life – not Jesus Christ, but labor union icon Cesar Chavez.

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Chavez was born Mar. 31, 1927 and his birthday is celebrated as an official holiday in three states – California, Texas and Colorado – in recognition of the impact Chavez had in bringing some measure of fair treatment to farm workers. Though controversial, his place as a historical figure is undeniable. But on this day are most of those very laborers thinking about Chavez or another – perhaps more important – influential leader?

It is the ultimate sign that secular humanism continues to reign at Google, not respect for the religious traditions important to billions of people worldwide. One historical figure who led a labor movement is exalted, another who inspired a religious one ignored.

Oddly, Matthew Schmitz, a writer for a leading Catholic publication, came out with an odd apology of sorts for Google’s idolatry of Chavez. Schmitz wrote:

Google’s decision to display the visage of Cesar Chavez on Easter Sunday has provoked immediate fury from many corners. The decision indeed is difficult to justify. Yet Google’s odd choice should remind us that whatever one thinks of Chavez’s politics, they are impossible to understand apart from his belief in the resurrected Christ.

Fullscreen capture 3312013 120610 PM.bmpChristians might not see that argument as more palatable or even a worse affront to their faith. Choosing the day that Christian tradition celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day after his crucifixion as a day to honor Chavez as a quasi-religious figure may be seen by some as sacrilege.

By avoiding less controversial doodle themes – Microsoft’s search engine chose a photo of Easter eggs (screenshot at right) – Google is continuing a tradition of not giving a hat tip to the Christian holiday that goes back to 2000. (You can check this by consulting the comprehensive doodle index maintained by Google.) Every other year since their 2000 nod to the Christian holy day, Google has not employed a doodle of any kind. It begs the question of whether Google featuring any other subject on Easter Sunday marks a change in policy or is it mere coincidence? It also makes one wonder why Google made a conscious decision to exclude all observances of Easter since 2000.

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Google’s last Easter “doodle” on Apr. 23, 2000.


Certainly, Google has every right to doodle whatever they wish, but continuing to thumb their nose at the billions of Christians worldwide seems petty and pointless.