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Hogarth judge

November 2018



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Hogarth judge

Group of German Catholics wants to ban Santa Claus

From The Telegraph
The Bonifatiuswerk of German Catholics – a church aid organisation – has begun calling for "Santa Claus-free zones."

The organisation sees Santa as "an invention of the advertising industry designed to boost sales" and as "a representative of consumer society who has little to do with the historical figure of St Nicolas."

Because of his linkage with commercialism the group says he should be banished and replaced with the more charitable, and traditional, St Nicolas.

St Nicolas, the patron saint of children, is described on the group's website as "a helper in need who reminds us to be kind, to think of our neighbours, and to give the gift of happiness."

The campaign is supported by several German TV celebrities.

"Unlike Santa Claus, Nicolas wants to give children inner riches and not just encourage them to strive for material wealth," said Nina Ruege, a German TV presenter.

Santa Claus comes from the Dutch Sinterklaas, which means St Nicolas, and was introduced to the American colonies in the 1600s. In 1808, the American author Washington Irving created a modern version, depicting him as a jolly Dutchman. In 1863, a German immigrant called Thomas Nast drew a short plump Santa for Harper's Weeklyand gave him his traditional red clothing. The artist Haddon Sundblom then finished Santa as he is widely known today when he drew a larger-than-life grandfatherly figure for Coca-Cola.

A holiday is a day when you get to relax and do what you want. Thanksgiving and Exxmas are the opposite of holidays.

I get the impression that most people are probably utterly weary of the hassle entailed by the "holiday season". The whole Grinch/Scrooge deal makes this meme one of the best defended mental organisms around, with a toxic defense mechanism. What needs to happen is to achieve a critical mass of public refusal to break these defenses, and the whole scam will come tumbling down.