Video: Chicago news anchor ruins Christmas for Santa believers

posted at 2:05 pm on December 2, 2011 by Tina Korbe

Moral of this story: Don’t let your kids watch the nightly news if you want to preserve their wide-eyed wonder about Santa Claus (or their innocence, in general … the news is rough stuff! I feel older and more cynical by the day!).

In a segment about children’s gift expectations on Fox Chicago earlier this week, news anchor Robin Robinson flat-out said, “There is no Santa.” (The denial comes at about 3:06). Parents were pretty upset — so upset, in fact, that Robinson later apologized. The Huffington Post reports:

Robinson apologized to her audience Wednesday during “The Talker,” an op/ed segment of the 9 p.m. newscast that regularly shares reader reactions from social media platforms.

“It was careless and callous to say…what I said, in what could’ve been mixed company,” Robinson said. “So many kids don’t get to be children, that for those who do get to live the wonder and magic of Christmas, I would never spoil it intentionally. So I sincerely apologize. We have certainly heard how you feel about my mistake, and since The Talker is about opinions: here we go.”

In the segment, titled simply “An Apology,” Robinson read Facebook comments slamming her slip-up, and went out to Michigan Avenue to confess to viewers and get reactions, which were overwhelmingly critical.

Gotta give Robinson props for quickly apologizing — and for doing it in an equally public fashion, even hitting the streets to say sorry. But the best move she made was to cite news editor Francis P. Church, whose famous editorial “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus,” remains one of the best apologetics for Santa ever written. The letter quickly became the most reprinted newspaper editorial of all time — so surely one more reprinting won’t hurt:

Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s, are little. In this great universe of ours, man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies. You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived could tear apart. Only faith, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives and lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay 10 times 10,000 years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Happy believing!

Shopping Mall Santas Scaling Back Kids’ Expectations, Profiling Parents: MyFoxCHICAGO.com


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I never could understand why people lie to there kids about Santa and the Tooth Fairy etc.

You can still tell the legend and embrace the idea without actually trying to dupe your kids.

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Santa is a helluva lot more real than AGW.

Badger40 on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Let them truly believe it while young and slowly acclimate them to the fact it’s a legend.
That’s what I did.
It works.
And things are still magical for them.

Badger40 on December 2, 2011 at 2:11 PM

What this slug meant to say, bho is the US santa and he will give or not give to you if he feels like it or not?
L

letget on December 2, 2011 at 2:12 PM

Why am I not surprised that this happened in my former home city.
*sigh*
Btw:Chicago during the Christmas season is the most fun play on the planet…if you don’t believe in Santa.

annoyinglittletwerp on December 2, 2011 at 2:13 PM

I never could understand why people lie to there kids about Santa and the Tooth Fairy etc.

You can still tell the legend and embrace the idea without actually trying to dupe your kids.

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

How old are you, do you have kids?

right2bright on December 2, 2011 at 2:15 PM

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Could you just let kids enjoy being kids for a little while.
You know-childhood innocence and all that.
*glares*

annoyinglittletwerp on December 2, 2011 at 2:15 PM

You can still tell the legend and embrace the idea without actually trying to dupe your kids.

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

How about because the truth in the world sucks enough that it’s nice for them to have something pure and magical to believe in for a few years.

amerpundit on December 2, 2011 at 2:15 PM

At O’Hare this time of year, all of the Christmas trees throughout the terminals are labeled “Holiday Tree.” I noticed this last year.

RMCS_USN on December 2, 2011 at 2:16 PM

If this was a conservative, they would have been fired on the spot

cmsinaz on December 2, 2011 at 2:16 PM

What time was the newscast. Because where I live nightly local news is at 11PM. Not a big deal if the newscast was that late.

NotCoach on December 2, 2011 at 2:21 PM

LOL

Good Lt on December 2, 2011 at 2:21 PM

This bee-atch has some life lessons to catch up on. Until then, she’s a giant C in my book.

Western_Civ on December 2, 2011 at 2:22 PM

Church’s editorial is just beautiful.

changer1701 on December 2, 2011 at 2:22 PM

Santa isn’t real?

Pablo Honey on December 2, 2011 at 2:23 PM

NotCoach on December 2, 2011 at 2:21 PM

I skipped over the HuffPo excerpt because, well, it’s HuffPo. I see they have it as a 9PM newscast. Yeah; kind of an idiot than.

NotCoach on December 2, 2011 at 2:23 PM

Let’s just replace all instances of “Santa Claus” with “THE CHINESE” .

Real enough for ya, Robinson?

Jeddite on December 2, 2011 at 2:25 PM

I never could understand why people lie to there kids about Santa and the Tooth Fairy etc.

You can still tell the legend and embrace the idea without actually trying to dupe your kids.

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

I have a couple of little boys that believe in Santa. It’s not that I have indoctrinated them. Rather it’s that they believe everything they see and they want to believe in Santa. For them it’s fun. My wife and I play along but we are careful to point out that the Santa’s on TV and at the mall are not real, just actors. Also, we don’t let them get carried away by reminding them that the whole point about Christmas is the birth of Jesus and not about getting presents. We remind them the gifts are to celebrate His birthday, not theirs so they get some nice gifts but the bigs come on their birthday. It helps to get away from all the materialism of the Holiday.

SPCOlympics on December 2, 2011 at 2:26 PM

Santa is a helluva lot more real than AGW.

Badger40 on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

You forgot to mention “Recovery Summer” and “Most Transparent Administration Ever” along with AGW.

MeAlice on December 2, 2011 at 2:26 PM

Merry Christmas! Record Number of Americans Bought Guns on Black Friday
http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2011/12/have-a-bang-up-christmas-record-number-of-americans-bought-guns-on-black-friday/

“More citizens lawfully exercising their Second Amendment right to carry a firearm, coupled with a growing awareness since the Supreme Court’s decisions in Heller and McDonald that the Second Amendment protects an individual fundamental right to keep and bear arms, helps to explain the continuing rise in sales of firearms and firearm-related products throughout the Untied States,” said National Shooting Sports Foundation Senior Vice President and General Counsel Lawrence G. Keane. “Clearly, Black Friday was a big day for both the firearms industry and our nation’s law-abiding gun owners.”

I guess that’s a bit of ruining Christmas for the Disarm the Law-abiding mob.

Chip on December 2, 2011 at 2:26 PM

RMCS_USN on December 2, 2011 at 2:16 PM

Any menorah’s? There used to be a big azzed one put up @ Daley Plaza by Chabad…but then there were …complaints.

annoyinglittletwerp on December 2, 2011 at 2:27 PM

I don’t have any objection to Santa Claus as long as he isn’t given top billing, over Jesus. It is, after all, Christmas, and His gift of forgiveness to all who have faith (obedient trust) in Him is infinitely better than anything bought in a store.

Many families teach their young children that the gifts come from Jesus, and I think that’s good. After all, “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above…” (James 1:17).

KyMouse on December 2, 2011 at 2:30 PM

What is this nonsense. Some idiot will be saying that there’s no Easter Bunny next! Grrrr!

OldEnglish on December 2, 2011 at 2:31 PM

This bee-atch has some life lessons to catch up on. Until then, she’s a giant C in my book.

Western_Civ on December 2, 2011 at 2:22 PM

Really? You have never said anything put of order and then instantly regretted it? Robin Robinson has been on the news for years; she is one of the most warm, approachable anchors in the area. I give her a lot of credit for her mea culpa.

Our kids believed in Santa for years. They knew the difference between the “real” Santa, and his “elves” in the store pretending to be Santa. Ow that they are old enough, they love that we let them hold on to the magic of Santa.

herm2416 on December 2, 2011 at 2:35 PM

Odd. The same folks who bash “Santa” and warn of impeding doom if you let your children believe; are the same folks who have no problem believing in “free” health care.

Go figure.

GarandFan on December 2, 2011 at 2:36 PM

But I bet she believes Barack is GAWD.

SouthernGent on December 2, 2011 at 2:39 PM

Christmas became a different kind of fun once Santa wasn’t the focus. As a parent using him as a sledgehammer for better behavior was helpful. “If you don’t behave Santa’s going to bring you underwear for Christmas!” Good times!

Cindy Munford on December 2, 2011 at 2:40 PM

Liberal View:

Telling your 5 year old Santa exists is morally worng.

Dressing up your 5 year old in a 2 piece bikini for a pageant, while cluthching “Sex and You” is morally right.

Got it.

Odie1941 on December 2, 2011 at 2:42 PM

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Did you farm potatoes in the Soviet Union as a child or something?

Lawdawg86 on December 2, 2011 at 2:43 PM

I wish somebody would tell the OCCUPY movement there is no Robin Hood.

portlandon on December 2, 2011 at 2:46 PM

Oh please. Are we really going to be outrageously outraged over this?

angryed on December 2, 2011 at 2:48 PM

angryed on December 2, 2011 at 2:48 PM

Yeah, I’m not feeling the outrage. I was bored after watching one minute of that video, there is no way any kids young enough to believe in Santa would have been paying attention.

Lawdawg86 on December 2, 2011 at 2:50 PM

It could be worse.

It could be a second-grade teacher being a major douchebag about it.

Red Cloud on December 2, 2011 at 2:53 PM

Odd. The same folks who bash “Santa” and warn of impeding doom if you let your children believe; are the same folks who have no problem believing in “free” health care.

Go figure.

GarandFan on December 2, 2011 at 2:36 PM

This.

catmman on December 2, 2011 at 2:57 PM

Robin Robinson has been on the news for years; she is one of the most warm, approachable anchors in the area.

herm2416 on December 2, 2011 at 2:35 PM

She’s never been my cup of tea. I found her stuck-up and be-otchy wa-a-ay before this happened. Her remarks to Walter Jacobsen when they co-anchored were unnecessary.

She should have known not to say what she said when she said it. She might be smart but she has no common sense or decency.

Fallon on December 2, 2011 at 2:59 PM

angryed on December 2, 2011 at 2:48 PM

Outraged, no. Just another little story about how the world goes round.

Cindy Munford on December 2, 2011 at 2:59 PM

My kids know how much I love Santa and Christmas and to this day have never said they don’t beleive or asked me about it… they are 19 and 17:) God Bless them… I did tell them when they were in late middle school that like baby Jesus some people don’t beleive but just like that we have to continue to beleive in generosity and love for all… Never had a problem after that, you are carrying on a tradition of love…how can that be a bad thing for a child?

momof2 on December 2, 2011 at 3:00 PM

Oh please. Are we really going to be outrageously outraged over this?

angryed on December 2, 2011 at 2:48 PM

Yes we are. After checking the list twice, We have decided to pay a personal visit to Robin to assure her of our continued existance even in this day of reduced expectations.

unclesmrgol on December 2, 2011 at 3:04 PM

Walter Jacobsen

He is looking really creepy these days on his CBS News commentaries.

Too much fake tan or something.

Pablo Honey on December 2, 2011 at 3:05 PM

In this great universe of ours, man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Funny, I thought he was talking about Obama’s “intellect.”

Roy Rogers on December 2, 2011 at 3:10 PM

I AM SANTACUS!

Christien on December 2, 2011 at 3:21 PM

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Actually, children do have a hard time telling truth from fiction, even when it’s spelled out to them. Additionally, Santa Clause is a real figure. The only “lie” is that he’s still around today magically giving children gifts all over the world, and it’s a fairly benign lie at that.

Once they’re old enough to understand what’s real and what’s make believe, most kids learn the truth.

Esthier on December 2, 2011 at 3:23 PM

Let them truly believe it while young and slowly acclimate them to the fact it’s a legend.

Badger40 on December 2, 2011 at 2:11 PM

I’m finally realizing that my youngest has been slowly letting me acclimate to the idea that she knows. I don’t think I’m ready to believe that she doesn’t, so we’re going to pretend she does, at least for this year.

taznar on December 2, 2011 at 3:24 PM

Let kids believe it as long as they want, who cares, and what will it hurt? I remember when my very precocious and mature daughter was 8, and her brother was 6, she heard me talking about making a list for Santa. She waited and followed me into the kitchen, and said, “Oh, ugh. Must you continue with that nonsense?” LOLOLOL. I just explained it was for her brother, asked her to help me make it special for him, and maybe, just maybe, pretend a little, herself. We got a few more yrs before she decided we needed to quit babying him. ;-)

di butler on December 2, 2011 at 3:26 PM

Final some truth. Along the same line as Adam Carolla take down. Participation gift when you should get nothing as you have not lived as much a moral life as a kid can live. Sure you talk back and have no respect but here is a new bike from Santa because it is Christmas.

Even at Christmas time if she said something about doubting if Jesus or God was real in militant atheistic way. She would not have apologized even with all the same backlash. She would be starting her prime time show on MessBC very soon.

tjexcite on December 2, 2011 at 3:39 PM

The Left’s ‘war on Christmass’ never stops. They want everyone to be just as bitterly unhappy as they are.

rayra on December 2, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Time to bust out part of Uncle Hub’s speech from Secondhand Lions.

“If you want to believe in something–believe in it. Just because something isn’t true, that’s no reason you can’t believe in it. There’s a long speech I give to young men, and it sounds like you need to hear a piece of it–just a piece. Sometimes, things that may or may not be true are the things a man needs to believe in the most: That people are, basically, good; honor, courage, and virtue mean everything; that power and money, money and power mean nothing; that Good always triumphs over Evil. And I want you to remember this–that Love, True Love, never dies. Remember that, boy. Doesn’t matter if it’s true or not, you see. A man should believe in those things, because those are things worth believing in.”

Christien on December 2, 2011 at 3:40 PM

I wish somebody would tell the OCCUPY movement there is no Robin Hood.

portlandon on December 2, 2011 at 2:46 PM

Robin Hood only stole from foreign tyrants and politicians. “The Poor” were all Saxons under the boot of Norman domination. Plus, he was always for the right to bear arms. I watched the old Disney version a few months ago with my son, and I couldn’t help but put 0′s face on Prince John. “Taxes, taxes, beautiful, lovely taxes! Ah-ha ah-ha ah-ha!”

mabryb1 on December 2, 2011 at 3:44 PM

As long as there are children and adults who believe in the Spirit of Christmas, Santa Claus will always be real.

RedRobin145 on December 2, 2011 at 3:46 PM

“Clearly, Black Friday was a big day for both the firearms industry and our nation’s law-abiding gun owners.”

Just in case, Mr. Claus or his representatives are reading this, if there’s a Springfield XD-45 left over, you can leave it under my tree!

(I was REALLY nice this year)

TugboatPhil on December 2, 2011 at 3:47 PM

I wish somebody would tell the OCCUPY movement there is no Robin Hood.

portlandon on December 2, 2011 at 2:46 PM

Don’t diss Robin Hood. He stole from a corrupt government what that government had stolen from the people and then gave it back to the poor. He didn’t target the rich. He targeted the government.

JellyToast on December 2, 2011 at 4:04 PM

They might not believe in Santa in Chicago, but they’ll still let him vote there.

Jim Treacher on December 2, 2011 at 4:07 PM

I have four kids and we’ve taught them that our family celebrate Christmas because that’s the day we celebrate the birth of Jesus.

We have taught them that St. Nicolas was real and so the Santa thing came from that.

My kids know there is no guy coming through chimney’s and bringing them presents. The presents are from mom, dad, grandparents, etc.

They’re not missing out on some amazing innocence that must be experienced by all children. Focusing that awe and wonder on our God seems to work out okay for us.

Even as adults, the wonder of the incarnation is still something of amazement, so us grownups can still have that sense of “innocence.” But this time about something that lasts, not a childhood story about Santa.

BruinEric on December 2, 2011 at 4:07 PM

The Santa I always told my kids about was the Saint Nicholas. A real human being, not some imaginary character from a poem. Yes there events surrounding him that may have been fabricated,but they do not lessen his story. A true human being that embodied what we now refer to as the Christmas spirit.

Zaire67 on December 2, 2011 at 4:12 PM

I never could understand why people lie to there kids about Santa and the Tooth Fairy etc.

You can still tell the legend and embrace the idea without actually trying to dupe your kids.

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

As Frank Sinatra would say, you get your kicks from steppin’ on a dream. Shut up and go away.

Ward Cleaver on December 2, 2011 at 4:20 PM

They might not believe in Santa in Chicago, but they’ll still let him vote there.

Jim Treacher on December 2, 2011 at 4:07 PM

DING! DING! DING! DING!

Ward Cleaver on December 2, 2011 at 4:21 PM

Yes, I keep forgetting that western culture can’t have any traditions. Only middle eastern, african, and far eastern folks can have quaint traditions passed on for generations. We just have to throw all of ours in the trash and openly accept foreign practices. Got it now thanks!

gator70 on December 2, 2011 at 4:22 PM

My daughter figured out the Santa thing at Easter(Easter is Christmas Part II at my mother-in-law’s house) earlier this year, so I read her a story about a Jewish man who dressed as Santa and gave out toys to poor kids in NYC with the moral that Santa and indeed the spirit of Christ and Christmas lives in all of us. She responded with some backtracking that hey, she might believe, like she was a Santa agnostic or something. All my hard work for her little psyche for nothing “P

thebrokenrattle on December 2, 2011 at 4:23 PM

This was a stupid as Coca-Cola evicting Santa from its cans, and replacing him with a stupid polar bear. Screw the polar bears.

/where’s my polar bear rug?

Ward Cleaver on December 2, 2011 at 4:25 PM

I doubt any man is coming down that woman’s chimney.

peacenprosperity on December 2, 2011 at 4:28 PM

I never could understand why people lie to there kids about Santa and the Tooth Fairy etc.

You can still tell the legend and embrace the idea without actually trying to dupe your kids.

Kids can appreciate imaginary tales etc. without telling them they are real.

esnap on December 2, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Because there is a Santa Claus. I know I met him once. :)
Now the Tooth Fairy is not real. I mean why would anyone collect teeth? Gross!

Deanna on December 2, 2011 at 4:55 PM

Wait, what? Santa isn’t real?
In other news…Winter is cold…We all know demons come from Chicago…and even the dead come alive to vote come election day.

HornetSting on December 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

One time at midnight Christmas morning service the minister said “I remember back when I was young enough to still believe in Santa Claus” and my 8 year old son glared at me and said why wouldn’t you? Fortunately my three year old had already zonked out. The minister heard from a number of unhappy parents.

The good news is that my eight year old spent the next 6 years being Santa or the Easter Bunny or Leprechauns at St. Patricks day and the Tooth Fairy; writing notes back to his little sister from the various entities, hiding easter baskets and helping her set leprechaun traps so they could try to get his gold and slipping money under her pillow while sliding out the tooth when she was asleep after losing a tooth. They both had a great time and my wife and I had belly laughs as the notes and antics showed the changing nature of their growing minds and degree of appreciation of the world.

I know the tradition will go on with my grandchildren when they come because both of my children cannot wait to share the wonder of childhood again.

KW64 on December 2, 2011 at 5:10 PM

We all know demons come from Chicago…and even the dead come alive to vote come election day.

HornetSting on December 2, 2011 at 5:01

Wouldn’t it be great to set a Zombie movie in Chicago on election day? A so-called election judge could opine that “I guess we should let the dead vote for themselves this time” and skedaddle as the zombies come into the polling place.

KW64 on December 2, 2011 at 5:14 PM

I AM SANTACUS!

Christien on December 2, 2011 at 3:21 PM

You get my vote for winner of the thread!

I don’t have any objection to Santa Claus as long as he isn’t given top billing, over Jesus. …

KyMouse on December 2, 2011 at 2:30 PM

Yes. As a kid, I remember seeing a picture in the Miles Kimball catalog of a creche figure of Santa Claus, bare-headed, his red hat in his hands, reverently kneeling before the Christ Child in the manger. I wasn’t raised very religiously, but even back then, I knew that was somehow right (though I’m sure I hadn’t learned the word “priorities” at that age…).

Christmas became a different kind of fun once Santa wasn’t the focus. As a parent using him as a sledgehammer for better behavior was helpful. “If you don’t behave Santa’s going to bring you underwear for Christmas!” Good times!

Cindy Munford on December 2, 2011 at 2:40 PM

I have a friend, an actor, who is the very embodiment of “Father Christmas” and often plays him. He’s a big guy (not fat, but big), his long white beard is 100% real, and he has a beautiful baritone voice, as dark and crumbly as the best Christmas fudge. He told a story about being in the checkout line at the grocery store with a mother whose little boy was swinging on the railing, rolling around on the floor, and otherwise acting up. My friend leaned over the young lad and quietly rumbled, “Santa Claus is always watching!” The kid immediately stood up straight, eyes wide, and practically saluted. I wish I’d been a fly on the wall! :-)

Mary in LA on December 2, 2011 at 5:14 PM

Yes, I keep forgetting that western culture can’t have any traditions. Only middle eastern, african, and far eastern folks can have quaint traditions passed on for generations. We just have to throw all of ours in the trash and openly accept foreign practices. Got it now thanks!

gator70 on December 2, 2011 at 4:22 PM

This, too. Happy Kwanzaa (est. 1966), y’all!

Mary in LA on December 2, 2011 at 5:18 PM

I wish somebody would tell the OCCUPY movement there is no Robin Hood.

portlandon on December 2, 2011 at 2:46 PM

As we used to say when I lived in the Chicago area, the Pols are not Robin Hoods, they are just Hoods Robbin’

KW64 on December 2, 2011 at 5:21 PM

Wow. I think I got moderated just for mentioning a secular winter holiday established in 1966.

Mary in LA on December 2, 2011 at 5:23 PM

If Santa’s not real then who’s that guy that keeps showing up at my house eating chocolate chip cookies and drinking milk on Christmas Eve? Media types – so many morons with a microphone and camera.

Texasrocker on December 2, 2011 at 5:23 PM

It’s a bad idea to start a human off in life telling them that some benevolent force brings goodies from the sky. And all they have to do is ask.

That’s how lefties get started out. Some people accept that Santa isn’t real. Others don’t. And those others go throughout their lives forcing the idea not just upon themselves, but upon others. At everyone’s expense.

If you have kids, do the future a favor: Don’t tell them a character brings material goods to them that nobody paid for. You may think it’s cute and harmless. Reevaluate that belief. Ask yourself what creates a lefty. What happened in their childhood to wire the circuits in their brain in that way. The dynamic that makes us who we are begins very early. Having children is a dicey proposition. There are a thousand ways for them to turn out bad and only a few for them to turn out good. And the default setting is bad.

keep the change on December 2, 2011 at 5:38 PM

Around 1942, during WW II, silence was the rule at our dinner table during the evening news broadcast by Walter Winchell. I was 4 years old and my brother 6 years on that Christmas Eve, when Winchell pulled the same stunt – something along the lines of “Why do parents keep lying to their kids, telling them the myth that Santa Claus is real?”

To this day I hear my mother’s sudden gasp, see the tears well up and spill from her eyes – see the rage flare on my father’s face as they heard the oracle/Winchell dash their kids’ Christmas Eve excitement.

I still remember Winchell’s voice, but mostly what I remember is feeling a sting of pain for my parents – while at the same time realizing how their reactions showed their love for me. THAT is my clearest memory of that night: the realization that love is what and how we give to other than ourselves. An appropriate experience for the night commemorating the origin of gift-giving.

GGMac on December 2, 2011 at 6:22 PM

keep the change on December 2, 2011 at 5:38 PM

What (if anything) did your folks tell you on the subject when you were little?

Mary in LA on December 2, 2011 at 6:33 PM

If you go say to my daughter, who is in grad school, your dad asked me to find out if you still believe in Santa and report back to him what I find out, she will say she does. Why? The rule at our house is that Santa only brings presents to those who believe. Teaching your children about joy, love, generosity, compassion, thoughtfulness,charity, and, maybe especially, selflessness, is a lot more effective if you can start early, in a way they can understand, then find a way to bring the lesson all the way through to adulthood in such a way that they can teach it to their children. Santa is ‘the man for’ that.

Knott Buyinit on December 2, 2011 at 6:38 PM

When I was five, another child told me there was no Santa Claus. When I asked my parents about it, they gently explained to me that Santa was a spirit, the spirit of giving. Even so, I stubbornly believed in an actual, physical Santa Claus until I was eight, and finally old enough to accept the inevitable.

I’m not impressed with Robin “The Grinch” Robinson’s apologies. She said something mean-spirited because it chaps her nethers that everyone isn’t as mentally rigid and unimaginative as herself, but when she got called on it, all of a sudden she was gushing apologies. She isn’t sorry for what she said (and believes). She’s only sorry that too many people don’t agree with her.

RebeccaH on December 2, 2011 at 6:42 PM

We read many fictional stories to our children when they were young. But the characters of those stories never crossed the gulf of imagination toward real life. Christmas isn’t about the gifts people give each other, though we certainly participate in that traditional aspect of it. Christmas is about the advent of God in human flesh, come to pave the way for all who choose to believe in Him, to spend their eternity with Him.

To confuse children between that history and a fictional ubermensch who makes them happy one day a year is not innocent. But that’s a choice each parent makes.

That said, a news reporter has no business being the one to crush the fantasy parents work so hard to maintain, and doing it from “long distance”, as it were. Worse that her apology isn’t a real apology, but more a case of being willing to accept the slings and arrows of outrage, while never once saying she was sorry.

Freelancer on December 2, 2011 at 8:01 PM

She’s right. Santa can be a symbol but we shouldn’t be lying to our kids that he comes with the gifts. When I was born-again at age 11, I realized that Santa totally takes over Christmas instead of the REAL “Reason for the Season”, so I feel pretty passionately about this subject. When my nephews were born, they were raised that Christma was all about Jesus’ birthday, and no Santa at all. We do a Christmas pie and sing “Happy Birthday” to Jesus and set up Nativities inside and outside.

I much prefer Father Christmas or St. Nicholas who is more the spirit of the season than the Americanized and modern “elf” who lives at the North Pole.

Besides, the parents should be the ones getting the thanks for the gifts since they’re the ones who are giving them, not some mythical man. It’s not a good idea to lie to kids.

-Aslan’s Girl

Aslans Girl on December 3, 2011 at 1:04 AM

I’ve always felt it’s dangerous for a religious family to also tell lies about Santa — when the kids realize Santa’s fake, they might wonder if the religion they were taught is fake, too, i.e. “what else did you lie about, Mom?”

Aslans Girl on December 3, 2011 at 1:06 AM

I think the “Polar Express” comment was over the top… She’s a loon, and he’s sexually harassing her… That’s all the news fit to report.
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Now back to denying that Barry’s policies are ruining Christmas.
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RalphyBoy on December 3, 2011 at 1:07 AM

That said, a news reporter has no business being the one to crush the fantasy parents work so hard to maintain

That’s a really cynical view of journalism. Shouldn’t the goal of journalism be to expose the truth? Should we change “All the news that’s fit to print” to “All your misconceptions, reënforced”?

Mark Jaquith on December 4, 2011 at 10:58 AM