Is there a Santa Claus?
Dear Editor: “I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, 'If you see it in The Sun, it's so." Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus? – Virginia O'Hanlon 115 West Ninety-fifth Street
Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the scepticism of a sceptical 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 child-like 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, fancy, 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 he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.
Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas.
- Calvin Coolidge
Politically correct target Christmas
There is little evidence that the forces of political correctness have sought to devise new, generic names for Ramadan or Hanukkah, lest their religious observance offend people who are neither Muslim nor Jewish. Nor have the symbols of those holy days been banished from secular view for fear of horrifying the non-believers. The same cannot be said, however, for the increasingly secularized observance of Christmas.
In Toronto, city officials sparked hoots of derision when they called the 15-metre tree set up outside city hall a “holiday tree," said the Toronto Star. The name change had even non-Christians shaking their heads. “You're not being inclusive when you try to apply one religious symbol to everybody," said B'nai Brith's Anita Bromberg. “You call it what it is . ... It's still a Christmas tree."
In South Orange, N.J., a students' trip to a production of The Christmas Carol was cancelled by school officials because, reports the Houston Chronicle, the Dickens' classic might offend non-Christian students.
A child-care centre at Swinburne University of Technology in Croydon, Australia will replace Santa Claus this year with a holiday clown “to avoid offending minority groups," writes the Melbourne Herald-Sun. Several kindergarten classes are following suit: Santa will be asked to ensure that Muslim children are not invited to sit in his lap because “we don't want to offend them," said one teacher. Australian Prime Minister John Howard called the ban “absolutely ridiculous." Said Victoria state opposition leader Robert Doyle: “Most little kids actually like Santa."
What do you call it when kids are afraid of Santa? Claustrophobia.
7 Dog’s Rules For Christmas
1. Be especially patient with your humans during this time. They may appear to be more stressed-out than usual and they will appreciate long comforting dog leans.
2. They may come home with large bags of things they call gifts. Do not assume that all the gifts are yours.
3. Be tolerant if your humans put decorations on you. They seem to get some special kind of pleasure out of seeing how you look with fake antlers.
4. They may bring a large tree into the house and set it up in a prominent place and cover it with lights and decorations. Bizarre as this may seem to you, it is an important ritual for your humans, so there are some things you need to know:
a. Don't pee on the tree
b. Don't drink water in the container that holds the tree
c. Mind your tail when you are near the tree
d. If there are packages under the tree, even ones that smell interesting or that have your name on them, don't rip them open
e. Don't chew on the cord that runs from the funny-looking hole in the wall to the tree
5. Your humans may occasionally invite lots of strangers to come visit during this season. These parties can be lots of fun, but they also call for some discretion on your part:
a. Not all strangers appreciate kisses and leans
b. Don't eat off the buffet table
c. Beg for goodies subtly
d. Be pleasant, even if unknowing strangers sit on your sofa
e. Don't drink out of glasses that are left within your reach
6. Likewise, your humans may take you visiting. Here your manners will also be important:
a. Observe all the rules in #4 for trees that may be
in other people's houses. (4a is particularly important)
b. Respect the territory of other animals that may live in the house
c. Tolerate children
d. Turn on your charm big time
7. A big man with a white beard and a very loud
laugh may emerge from your fireplace in the middle of the night ...
The 3 stages of man
He believes in Santa Claus.
He doesn't believe in Santa Claus.
He is Santa Claus.
Have a good one.