Black Santa “Traumatizes Children”

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Black Santas Matter

December 4th, 2016 – For the first time in its twenty-four year history, Minnesota’s Mall of America will feature an African American Santa during its annual holiday photo op. The selection, after a nation wide search, of an Army veteran named Larry Jefferson to portray Father Christmas for the yuletide tradition has triggered outrage among some Internet commenters. So virulent was the condemnation that one local paper’s website was forced to suspend commenting on an article about the hiring.

The newly anointed St. Nick was not bothered by the controversy, choosing to focus instead on putting smiles on the faces of Minneapolis’ children.
“What they see most of the time is this red suit and candy. [Santa represents] a good spirit. I’m just a messenger to bring hope, love and peace to girls and boys. Anybody can be Santa. It’s what’s in your heart.”
Black Santa "Traumatizes Children"
Fox News host Megyn Kelly famously ignited a similar controversy a few years ago after insisting on her show that Santa Claus is a white man and could not be depicted otherwise. Kelly’s humbug did not fall on deaf ears as followers from the dankest corners of the Internet shuffled over to their keyboards to vent. Calls for everything from firing the Black Santa to “black genocide” to a boycott of the Mall of America flooded Twitter and other social media sites.
Comments have also included sincere hopes that Jefferson was hired based on qualifications and musings of how parents will tell their children that Santa is black. Comments below are from Raw Story and USA Today:
Black Santa "Traumatizes Children" Screen Shot 2016-12-04 at 8.57.49 AM Screen Shot 2016-12-04 at 8.58.07 AM Screen Shot 2016-12-04 at 8.58.31 AM
The Mall of America has not given any official response to the controversy but has not changed its holiday plans. In addition to the paycheck, Jefferson, who will smile for photos for four days before bringing his Christmas cheer back to his native Dallas, sees more positive effects from having a “diverse” Santa.
“There needs to be more Santas of color, because this is America, and kids need to see a Santa that looks like them. That helps kids to identify with the love and spirit of the holiday.”

Are people just creatively expressing their opinions or are calls to boycott Black Santa more naughty than nice? Funny or Offensive? Vote and comment now.

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