0 5

An individual is deprived of their livelihood because he/she won't perpetuate ridiculous myths:

BBC News: Teacher who denied Santa will not return to school.

By Condor58
Actions Follow Post Like

Enjoy being online again!

Welcome to the community of good people who base their values on evidence and appreciate civil discourse - the social network you will enjoy.

Create your free account
Feel free to reply to any comment by clicking the "Reply" button.


Why do adults love to lie to their children? I guess because children are the only ones that believe them because they are depending on them. Not having the intelligence yet to part right from wrong. Adults should start to become really trustworthy to children, just telling them what is true and not and, even more important, why something is true or not.
Nothing wrong with telling them fairy tales, but it should be stories, not make-believe facts. Not telling them that there is a great magician, living in the sky on a platform called "heaven", who doesn't care what happens to you or not. That there are little sneaky beings called "elves" that sneak around every child, all year long to register all the mistakes and bad things children usually do and that betray their misconduct to a figure called Santa and that judges them, just like a god would.

Gert Level 7 Dec 20, 2018

No for many "Santa" is the epitome of giving. Not consumerism.

It depends entirely on how you view it.

I know people who volunteer at soup kitchens on the holiday - that is their Christmas every year. Should their 1st graders be made to disbelieve by a substitute teacher?

No. That was not her job.

No belief in the make believe is part of most childhoods. "Magical Thinking" is Normal.
When that belief is suspended depends very much on parental decisions.
This was not up to a school teacher. A substitute one in fact?
It was not part of her job description in any fashion.

Most of what we celebrate goes far past paganism into even further back solstice celebrations to encourage the return of the Sun from the dark realm.
I mean gees - kind of heavy for a 1st grader?

Absolutely rampant consumerism is terrible for adults. However for a child? Not so much.
Let kids be kids.

RavenCT Level 9 Dec 6, 2018

undoubtedly I agree with what you're saying above..... however this.."Absolutely rampant consumerism is terrible for adults. However for a child? Not so much.
Let kids be kids." is exactly how those adults become so good at it.

I don't know how you equate soup kitchen with Santa Claus, seems to me those are polar opposites. If people working in soup kitchens want their children to understand giving, they should take their kids there for a visit; that's the epitome of giving. SC, in kids' minds, is all about getting. Why else do they put Santas in shopping malls?

@Condor5 They understood "Santa" to be a spirit of giving.
Not consumerism.

It's all in how you present it. It does not have to all commercialism. In their family it was not.

In mine we've drawn away from a million gifts for every child. It had gotten ridiculous.

I've done some handmade gifts and those go over very well.

But my point was it wasn't up to her to make her stand in a classroom. It was rather mean in fact.

I can hold the opposite view from a child and not ruin their magical thinking for them.

I might choose not to create their magical thinking either in some cases? But knowing it was there? No I would not do this.

First rule - don't cause deliberate harm to kids.

That's just my opinion and it's ok if it's different from other peoples. I don't teach kids so it won't be up to me.

But I won't be running down the street shouting "Santa doesn't exist!" anytime soon.

Oh and I have a round neighbor with a white beard - glasses and blue eyes... guess what happens to him when he goes out this time of year? Yup! He's kind of a curmudgeon and yet he still gets it. It's just "kid magic". They never ask him for anything. They're just happy to see him around.


As I stated when the story first came to my attention, I have very mixed feelings.

KKGator Level 9 Dec 6, 2018

Saying that there is no Santa, no Easter Bunny, etc., is not a decision for that sub teacher to make. It's up to the parents to decide when the child is ready to be told. Yes, strictly speaking, it's perpetuating a myth, but it's up to the family to decide how to deal with that myth. This teacher made him/herself the judge of what is right and wrong ("It's wrong for these children to believe in Santa" ), and that's not a choice that she/he should make.

It's kind of like how parents deal with teaching their kids about sex. I may disagree with what a parent chooses to do or say on this subject, I might disagree with them in a discussion that the child was privy to, but I would not independently seek the child out to "set them straight." It wouldn't be my place to do this, nor is it my place to tell anyone's child (unless they are 15 or something) that there is no Santa.

Also, since this person is a substitute teacher, strictly speaking, s/he is not being deprived of a livelihood. Who knows whether this person was teaching full- or part-time? This individual may not have been totally dependent on that income, and there are other districts that need substitute teachers. And hopefully this person will now think twice before debunking a dearly-held childhood belief.

Santa Claus, as children relate to him now, is a fabrication of the Coca Cola company to sell sugar water, at one time laced with cocaine; he essentially represents gift-giving in promotion and perpetuation of consumerism which leads to resource depletion; typically for the peddling of unnecessary and useless crap.

If you're OK with all that, fine. I think it's an abomination.

@Condor5 You're certainly reading a lot more into the myth of Santa Claus than I am. Dislike consumerism all you want, but I don't think it hurts kids to have a few years where Christmas is exciting and filled with mystery.

@citronella excitement and mystery can be good things, agreed. Where those come from can be channeled into more beneficial and life-enhancing conduits, however, among which, imho, the xmas and Santa Claus myths are not included. My primary objection here is the fact that this person had his/her job taken away for a relatively minor offense. Those kids may have had 1, maybe 2 more years tops of Santa belief, if they didn't already likely know the truth, which I suspect they probably did.

@Condor5 To me the mistake this person made was NOT a minor offense. It's not the "yes or no on Santa" question; it was the fact that this person felt entitled to make a decision that was not hers to make. There was no academic content associated with what she told the kids, and the information that she shared was not hers to share, it was the parents' prerogative. To me it's the same thing as telling kids where babies come from, at an age when many of them don't need to know that yet. It's not just the information that she shared, it's the ARROGANCE of thinking that her view superseded anyone else's.

@citronella we'll just have to agree to disagree on this one.


She stepped outside of her remit....and she sounds a bit like a Spoilsport to me. I believe it is pretty harmless for children to believe in Santa and the Tooth Fairy, they grow up and out of these childish notions in the natural course of things anyway. If only they grew out of their belief in Jesus and God as easily.....now if some brave teachers want to take that mythology on, then they would have my wholehearted support.

The Santa Claus we see nowadays, and the one most children identify with, was invented by Coca Cola.

@Condor5 Possibly, not here in the U.K., though. We barely had heard of Coca Cola here when I was a child but I still knew of the Red Cloaked figure of Santa Claus or Father Christmas who filled our stockings and rode his reindeer sleigh.

@Marionville this incident is here, in the U.S., I don't know about where you are. I don't live there and don't know all the customs, so I can't comment with any authority.

Write Comment
  • Humanist.com is the largest non-profit community for humanists!