Jesus and Santa Have Really Bad PR.

Dec 19th 2013

Every year, I mention that we don’t do the Santa thing, and every year, people go ballistic on me as though I came to their home and strangled their dog in front of their children. I can’t quite understand why our family’s decision evokes such a strong response from other people, but boy, they do not pull any punches when letting me know exactly how pissed off they are. Take this person: in reference to my 2010 Santa post that was linked on my facebook page last weekend…


But here’s the best part of that comment — it wasn’t from one of the nameless trolls. That was from my former drummer who I haven’t spoken to in about TEN years. Haven’t heard from her, haven’t seen her around. ZERO contact with this person until she leaves a comment on my public facebook page telling me “FUCK You” because I don’t do Santa with my children. THAT is how angry this makes people. Apparently the fact that we share friends and her husband’s band played at my son’s birthday party doesn’t warrant any sort of respectful dialogue on this issue.

santawtfMy husband was so disturbed by that random attack, he left a lengthy couple of comments in response, which, if you’re familiar with my page, you know my husband never, eeeeeeever comments there.

But here’s what I don’t understand… Jews don’t do Santa, yet I don’t see people going ape-shit on them about it. In fact, billions of people across the world don’t celebrate Santa or Christmas at all, yet who gives a shit? Nobody.

But if you’re agnostic and can’t tie your Santa-less-ness to a religion, well, then you’re just a sorta-Christian doing a really bad fucking job at celebrating the holiday season… or something like that.

But if you really believe in the holiday spirit — if you really believe this season is about celebrating the magic of a man who does nothing but give — then what in the world would Santa think of your behavior? Doesn’t he have some sort of a naughty list? And wouldn’t swearing at old friends on facebook land you squarely on that list? Or do the rules not apply to you because you believe in him? If you want to tell your kids that Santa only brings presents to the good little girls and boys, then maybe you, as a parent, should stop acting like a total douchewad. I think THAT is a better way to teach your kids to be good people. Maybe try being one yourself.

This is so similar to those people who run around using Jesus as a reason to act like dicks.

In case you hadn’t heard, one of those dudes from that Duck Dynasty show (seriously, how is this a thing?) got caught saying some homophobic, racist, bigoted shit in GQ magazine, all in the name of Jesus.

But Jesus, from all my of my Christian (Baptist AND Jesuit) studies, was NOT a bigot. Jesus was a righteous dude who sacrificed his life standing up for the oppressed. Jesus hung with prostitutes, criminals, outcasts, and the poor. He loved EVERYONE. If he were here, standing in front of Grandpa Duck or whatever the fuck his name is, he’d be setting the record straight on some things. Jesus would explain that he’s a liberal socialist if there ever was one.

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” ~ Matthew 25:40

“He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.” ~ Matthew 25:44

And Jesus never had a bad thing to say about homosexuality. Jesus cared only about how you lived your life — your ACTIONS — not the way you were born.

There’s nothing “Christian” about being a bigot. I was Baptized in a church and then made the choice to separate myself from it as an adult, particularly because so many Christians don’t act very Christian-like. If believing in God means I have to say awful shit about Gays and Muslims as the Duck dude did, then I prefer to be godless. Those types of shitty comments are NOT what I believe Jesus would spread if he were here today.  But Grandpa Duck seriously tried to compare Nazis to homosexuality and Islam, and as far as I know, did so with a straight face. In this ridiculous interview, he was able to somehow weave the killing of 7 million Jews into his assertion that gays are godless purveyors of “bestiality,”  claimed that black people in the south were much happier under Jim Crow, then rounded out his ignorant rant by calling Muslims “terrorists.”

I just. I can’t even.

How about this: If you seriously believe that some invisible man is watching your behavior and rewarding you for being good, or if that’s what you want your KIDS to believe, then maybe you should try, I dunno… BEING GOOD. Eh? Maybe Santa doesn’t bring presents to people who act out their 10-yr old grudges in immature facebook comments. And maybe Jesus isn’t going to welcome you into the kingdom of heaven if you horde your Duck Dynasty cash and use your platform to spit on his other children.

And if your “faiths” and “fantasies” are so fragile that they cannot withstand coming into contact with someone who doesn’t believe exactly what you do, then maybe you don’t even buy what you’re selling.

Now go celebrate the fucking birth of Jesus Christ with your cookie-eating Bearded Chimney Burglar and stop acting like raging ignorant assholes all over the place.

Merry Christmas.

Signed ~ a Thoughtful Athiest Whose Kids Knows She Buys the Presents.

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10 Responses to “Jesus and Santa Have Really Bad PR.”

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    We tell our kiddo that Santa is a character in a story, and that Christmas presents are purchased by his parents. He also knows that his Baba goes to work to earn the money for said presents, and I think that’s a much more important lesson to learn in the long run. His imagination doesn’t seem to suffer because we don’t lie to him about Santa/Easter Bunny/whatever else.

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    We do Santa. I wish we didn’t. I wish we didn’t at 2 AM when I’ve been wrapping “Santa’s” gifts for two hours, when I spend hours planning and purchasing “Santa’s” gifts with money my husband earned.

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    Well said Gina. My children know we and other people buy the presents. I do believe in Jesus though and respect you for your beliefs.

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    Being Jewish, I’m new to this debate, although it doesn’t surprise me judging from the aggressive reaction that my daughter’s friend’s mom had when she accidentally spilled the beans about Santa a few years ago (the girls were probably 8 or 9 at the time?…and my daughter probably assumed that everyone knew that Santa wasn’t “real”–obviously my fault). The other mom told my daughter (I wasn’t there) that she couldn’t come back to their house again if she was going to “ruin their holidays”. Yikes. Traumatic!
    rachelmannnyc´s last blog post… The Santa Talk (Jewish Edition)My Profile

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    We never told our kid anything about Santa. Not a word. And she’s home with me, so it’s not like there’s a lot of outside influence. Then last year, at age 2, she announces to her 3-year-old cousin that there’s no such thing as Santa. My sis sits down with them and tells them that some people believe in Santa and some people don’t, and both those things are okay, but that in that house, they believe in Santa. They both accept this, and she thinks it over, comes home, tells me about it, and we talk about how Santa is a very fun pretend. We play along with her stories about her imaginary friends, and she plays along with our stories about how we buy the presents under the tree and Santa fills the stockings. And every once in a while, we talk about how it’s all a game, but it’s a really fun one to play sometimes.

    A few months ago, the same cousin (they are now 3 and 4, of course) is talking about how he and his mom “get their Jesus on” (what she calls going to church in their casually-Christian family), and my sis again explains that some people believe in God, and in that house, they do. Kid comes home and informs me that her cousin goes to church sometimes, because God is a fun pretend, like Santa.

    I think she’s doing all right. 😉

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    I’m Jewish but my dad was raised Catholic so my parents raised up with Christmas trees and Santa but nothing else Christian. It was fun believing in Santa but as my ex-husband and I are both Jewish, we never did Santa. Our daughter even went to a Jewish preschool so the way she learned about the jolly fellow was from media and decorations. But he never came to our house and she felt kind of bad about that. This year (age 8) I told her the truth and made sure to explain that if her friends still believed, she shouldn’t try to set them straight. The funny thing is that her younger brother (4) refuses to accept the truth. We watched a bunch of classic Christmas shows like Rudolf and Frosty and he keeps telling me, “Santa is real!” I tried explaining that Santa was as real as Batman but I guess he thinks Batman is real too.

    I don’t understand why so many parents are willing to let an imaginary character take credit for their work. I don’t know if it’s being Jewish/atheist or pragmatic or just plain cynical that makes me feel this way but I just don’t get why so many parents struggle to make ends meet to get their kids the toys they really want and then intentionally don’t take the credit for it???

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      When I explain to people that I want the credit for buying presents with my hard-earned money, they tell me how “selfish” it is. Well, I don’t see it that way. I see it as helping kids appreciate what they get instead of thinking that it all comes from some magical fairy land where money is no object. Money is a constant source of stress in our home and I, personally, couldn’t stand listening to my kids whine about what Santa didn’t bring them. I need them to know that we’ve made sacrifices to get them what they have, and I hope that helps them appreciate it a little more. Being the only grand kids on BOTH sides (with no chance for others since HH and I are Only children) and being a family of major givers, my kids are spoiled as it is and I feel like I have to constantly struggle to keep them from acting so entitled.
      Feminist Breeder´s last blog post… Jesus and Santa Have Really Bad PR.My Profile

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    We’re still so freaking poor that I wish we had never started doing the Santa thing, but it was practically a reflex. We were raised Christian (I’m not, but he is still) and it never occurred to us to -not- do it. The hubby seems to like it because the kids get so excited and it gives us the ol’ “Santa’s watchingso be good” and “Santa won’t come if you’re awake” to help calm them down a bit, but I’m getting tired of the myth getting the credit.

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    Also, I’m really bummed that I missed an appearance by HH!

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