“First it was butter then it was sugar and white flour, bacon, eggs, balogna, rock ‘n roll, motorcycles. Then! It was celebrating Christmas on a day in September when you knew it wouldn’t be commercialized! What else are you gonna ban?”
If you’ve ever seen Almost Famous, you’ll easily remember that line. Although, the depiction of the over-protective mom for her rebellious teenage daughter doesn’t quite mimic what I’m talking about here, it has shades of the same restrictive nature that political correctness can tend to have on culture and tradition these days.
And now, they’re trying to get Santa Claus!
Most people know him as the big fat bearded man who’s just jolly enough to deliver the gifts of Christmas across the world all in one night, and do it with a smile on his face. Sure, the true origins of Christmas have religious values, but today we celebrate it in a way that invites anyone to take part in the cultural festivity. Even so, the assault on tradition and culture in the name of political correctness seems to always be encroaching.
In an article put out by SignOnSanDiego.com, reporters found that an Australian shopping company was training shopping mall Santa Claus characters to no longer say “Ho! Ho! Ho!” for fear that the words had a sexual and demeaning connotation. Numerous news sources have reported the incident and found a number of people claiming that it was a silly move and completely overdone. In the end, the Santas were allowed to revert away from the “Ha! Ha! Ha!” they were demanded to exclaim and be their natural selves. Phew, one small victory for level-headedness.
So, like anyone else, I started to worry and ask myself: What else are they going to ban? Soon, Santa will be assaulted for offending overweight people. Maybe he’s offensive to a small community of individuals with skin problems that can’t shave their beards. Still again, that red suit surely has communist overtones, doesn’t it?
I find a few inherent problems with the detraditionalization of Santa Claus that the political correctness crowd has to consider.
Here are my reasons why political correctness can’t win over Santa:
- First, lets dispute the word “Ho”. This word is obviously a pop cultural phenomenon. It’s origins do not provide an actual root from which it can be derived. That being the case, shouldn’t we consider the fact that pop culture is killing tradition, not civil liberties?
- Second, once we pick ol’ Santa apart for all the things he does that represent a potential offense to various interest groups, we’d be left with a guy in jeans, sandals, a button up flannel, and a pair of thick glasses. Ultimately, isn’t it significantly more politically incorrect to have children sit on the laps of mysterious men?
- Thirdly, the very age group that is typically involved in sitting with the jolly fat man and asking for toys is disputably not interested in political correctness. Shouldn’t we ask the kids if they’re offended before we decide for them?
Here’s the deal, people. If ever the words bah humbug were in order, it’s now. Santa hails from a magical land of gumdrops, flying reindeer, and unbridled happiness. You just can’t touch him. You can’t attack the man…well.. because… he’s not real.
We dedicate our blog to the joy of costumes for one major reason. We like to celebrate the ability to get out of the daily monotony of who we all must be. It’s the power of imagination that keeps people dressing up, playing a new role, and having fun. If we start to extract imagination out of the biggest holiday of the year, we’ve completely failed.
My final word is this: We should spend less time worrying about how Santa is potentially offending a few of us. Frankly, if you ask me, the bigger point of interest should be on how he manages to mass produce toys for the entire world in such a short period of time. The secrets he possesses could change the face of our economy for the better in more ways than we can count. That’s my final word.