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He’s Gonna Find Out Who’s Naughty or Nice … or Stupid

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Sometimes I could believe I was living in the Matrix. Only, I can’t imagine sentient programs creating a world as irrational as ours.

We’ve come to expect the usual Christmastime attacks upon tradition in the name of the mythical “separation of church and state”; the nativity scene on public property and school Christmas celebrations are favorite targets. Then we have those wonderfully inclusive “holiday trees.” But now, hell’s sleigh bells, Santa Claus is under assault.

Is it because his image smacks of religion? Is it because he is also known as St. Nicholas? No and no. It is far, well, more stupid than that. Here’s the first of two examples of Santa insanity:

Some people don't want Santa Claus to say “ho-ho-ho” because it could be demeaning to women.

I kid you not.

I first heard about this idea being posited by some rubber-room candidates in Australia, but now it’s happening here, too. Writes the Austin American-Statesman,

The Chicago Tribune reports that the new Christmas controversy is over Santa’s traditional ho-ho-ho laugh. A company that hires mall Santas is advising its employees not to use the ho-ho-ho line. It suggests instead he-he-he or ha-ha-ha.

Because? The ho word can be demeaning to women, the company trainer told a group of Santa recruits. He was referring, of course, to the word as used in some rap music and hip hop songs to mean what we once referred to as “women of the night.” Or “working girls.”

I'm not sure if the right response is he-he-he, ha-ha-ha or to cry. But I'm not surprised that the name of the “trainer” wasn’t mentioned. Can you believe this lunkhead gets paid to render advice? He probably considers himself quite insightful, too.

Not to be outdone in the battle for complete intra-cranial neuronic dislocation, our friends across the pond also have a problem with the rotund jolly man.

He’s too fat.

The Daily Mail writes that Santas have been ordered to either slim down or face eviction from shopping malls.

Again, I kid you not. You can’t make this stuff up.

The paper writes,

“Santa is being told to shift the pounds before Christmas – because the obese saint is failing to set a ‘good example’ for children.”

The piece continues,

Bluewater shopping centre in Greenhithe, Kent, has even gone one step further and set-up a Santa boot camp.

Fiona Campbell-Reilly, spokeswoman at the shopping centre, said: ‘Santa has been around for years, but society has changed and our Santa needs to reflect this.

Bluewater’s Santa Boot Camp is getting Santa in shape and setting a good example to children who idolise him.’

The Mail also points out that, “The revelation [about the command to lose pounds] comes after a medical report earlier this month stated that by 2050 more than 50 per cent of Brits will be obese.”

The report did not indicate how many Brits will have lost their minds by 2050.

Now, let me see if I understand this correctly. Little Julie jumps into Santa’s lap at the mall and asks for a Britney Spears-like outfit.

Santa bellows “ho-ho-ho.”

Little Julie is offended. Says the little girl, “That’s just what the mean boys call me at school!”

Julie’s mother overhears and quite exercised exclaims, "Whatchu doin’ callin’ ma daughter a ho? She only 10 years old – I haven’ brung ‘er into th’ business yet!"

Afterwards, little Niles, visiting from the UK, jumps into Santa’s lap and asks for a pet potbelly pig.

Santa bellows “ha-ha-ha.”

Little Niles is almost in tears and whines,

“That's just how the bullies in school laugh when they call me a string bean! I want to be big and fat like Santa!”

Listen, I don’t want my Santas going on exercise regimens, trimming their beards, getting Botox injections or dying their hair. I want them fat, old, gray, wrinkled, jolly and generous.

And, please, Santa, even if they’re naughty, bring the leftist lunkheads some brain cells for Christmas.

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About Selwyn Duke

  • Dr Dreadful


    Not sure what those mythical creatures are, but did Selwyn actually stop to confirm the political leanings of the mall Santa company or the Bluewater management?

    Or is he just clumping to jonclusions?

  • P. Marlowe

    “Mythical” separation of church and state? You might want to study early American history and Constitutional debate before making such a claim.

    I will agree though though that the fanaticism of the Politically Correct is JUST as distressing as the abysmal ignorance of the frothing-at-the-mouth Right…

    It’s Christmas people – for God’s sake (and mine) pull your heads out of your collective asses!


  • Matthew T. Sussman

    But skinny Santas create an unrealistic expectation for today’s youth to aspire for.

  • duane

    Other reasons why Santa has got to go:

    1) Gives kids the impression that only old white guys and white elves live in the Arctic, thereby marginalizing the Inuit, Saami, Chukchi, Nenets, and other proud members of the various indigenous populations of the North.

    2) The image of elves making toys gives kids the impression that little people are happy to be subjugated by old white guys.

    3) Young girls are taught that if you sit in an old white guy’s lap and be real nice to him, you will receive material rewards.

    4) Santa’s climbing up on the roof and sliding down the chimney encourages reckless behavior among young boys.

    5) The reindeers Prancer and Vixen convey negative stereotypes to youngsters, which chips away at our long-cherished beliefs in traditional family values.

    6) Santa wears animal fur, which teaches children that it is acceptable to hunt down and slaughter innocent fur-bearing cohabitants of our planet.

    7) Santa smokes, which paves the way for nicotine addiction and associated diseases.

    8) Although Santa may have good intentions, his penchant for breaking and entering, free of penalty, is the wrong message to send to children.

    9) The word “breast” appears in the poem ‘The Night Before Christmas,’ which confusingly comingles the idea of gifts and secondary sexual characteristics.

    10) Claus is a German name. I don’t like Germans. Why not Santa Billy? Or Santa Tim?

    11) Santa is a title used for female saints. This is disturbing to young boys who are beginning to develop their sexual identities.

    11) Santa’s home environment perpetuates the stereotype that women sit in front of the fire knitting while the men do all the work. I recommend that Santa’s wife Beatrice drive the sleigh on alternating years, or take over altogether as a means of reparations to women the world over.

  • P. Marlowe

    Matthew T… I’m not sure how things are where you live but there are few kids here in Oregon swaddling themselves in cheap red (or any other color) velvet… So fat Santa, skinny Santa… Probably not a big issue… What worries me is the fact that we’ve already done away with the DRUNK Santa… So what, these guys gotta pat their noses with some rouge now? What’s next? Cross dressing Santas? Santas wearing 4″ “F* me” pumps and micro-mini skirts?

    See, when you mess with tradition you open up the OTHER Pandora’s box…


  • duane

    Oh yeah, two more things:

    12) Santa’s Arctic residency biases our youth as regards the northern and southern hemispheres, which has led to discriminatory practices such as depicting the North at the top of maps, while the South is at the bottom, terms such as “above the equator” and “below the equator,” with obvious parallels in our belief that Heaven is “above” and Hell is “below,” up is good, down is bad, etc.

    13) The depiction of Santa living in a wintry wonderland, for example, The Polar Express and the usual run of TV Christmas specials, obscures the fact that Santa’s homeland is melting, owing to global warming as a direct result of our selfish consumption/waste culture of entitlement, which is only exacerbated by the commercialization of Christmas via Santa.

  • http:.// Ruvy in Jerusalem


    I see you’ve carried the satire as far as it will go – and you did a good job – except you posted fourteen points, not thirteen. Do scientists always that much trouble with simple arithmetic?


    Just for the sake of information, being the native Breukelen boy that I am and a bit more aware of the Dutch origins of Sint Niklaas than most, Santa was originally a skinny bloke with a pipe and darkish hair. He was a bit of a crank too, always ready with coal for the baddies. In the Dutch Reformed Church, you always got your just desserts, along with the Oom Paulus pipe and some pork sausage….

  • Baronius

    Santa’s mistreatment of caribou is also troubling. He humanocentrically glamourizes the use of fellow animals for labor. Throw off the reins, reindeer! Be freedeer once more!

  • Dr Dreadful

    It’s a wonder, in the present climate, that kids aren’t terrified of Santa Claus. The British comedian Jasper Carrott satirized it very well in one of his stand-up routines. He pointed out that we constantly ram the whole “stranger danger” idea down children’s throats – beware of dirty old men, don’t talk to people you don’t know, etc. Then Christmas comes around and suddenly it’s, “This fat little old man in a red coat and a white beard is going to come down the chimney in the middle of the night and sneak into your room and…”

    Funny world.

  • duane

    Ruvy: “…except you posted fourteen points, not thirteen….”

    I’ll give you three good reasons why I messed that up:

    1) I was writing dear, touching little sentimentalities on a stack of Christmas cards, fighting off the urge to blacken out a few of Santa’s teeth, posting my stupid Santa list, calculating a Fourier transform, and eating some reindeer-shaped over-sugared holiday cookies all at the same time.

    2) I was thinking about the harm to our environment caused by the millions of Christmas trees that end up on the curb with bits of tinsel still hanging from the dried out branches — all because of this fat bearded seal killing chain smoking lardass with a guilt complex who is obviously trying to compensate for something in his past.

    2) Someone put on the Kenny G Christmas album.

    3) The Sears & Roebuck Christmas catalog just showed up in the mail.

  • STM

    Selwyn: “Some people don’t want Santa Claus to say “ho-ho-ho” because it could be demeaning to women.”

    Oh woops … you forgot to mention that it was shouted down and didn’t happen, just like all the other ridiculous politically correct nonsense that happens in this country.

    Someone always tries it on, but sanity (mostly) prevails.

    Still, that’s the great thing about living in a democracy (in the modern sense of the word, rather than the ancient greek for anyone wishing to engage in semantics): people are allowed to have their point of view, no matter how insane that might be.

    Under Selwyn’s world view, if we take his writings to be a guide, you won’t even be able to have the opinion.

  • Matthew T. Sussman

    “Someone put on the Kenny G Christmas album.”


  • MAOZ

    Oh, yeah, Ruvy (#7), Santa used to be a skinny bloke with darkish hair.

    He ain’t the only one that could be said about.

    Age’ll do that to ya!

  • http:.// Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Well, MAOZ, Santa hasn’t aged any since the American merchandisers turned him into a beaming distributor of gifts galore, all paid for by pissed off mommies and daddies.

    He hasn’t had a heart attack, a stroke, he doesn’t suffer from rheumatism, arthritis, muscle cramps, tired blood, fatigue, charlie horse, stomach pains, memory loss, or indigestion…. Heck, he doesn’t even fart!!

    How do I know? He wrote me himself in a personal e-mail complaining about my article on the commercializing of Santa Claus. He called me some choice names too, nasty lardass that he is.

    As for the rest of us, we get to enjoy mortality, and all that comes with it.

    So, anyway, we lit the first candle tonight. Hanukkah started with the possibility of building a writing business.

    Thank G-d for hope.

    Hanukká SaméaH aHí