Just Put A Red Hat On Pepe While You're At It

« December 2016 »

Memo to anyone who thinks a black Santa is controversial: YOU ARE DUMB.

I know America is racist. Really, really fucking racist. But since I'm white, I get to know it at an intellectual level, which means sometimes it can still surprise me. Like when I saw the news stories about the Mall of America hiring its first black Santa Claus.

How the fuck did it take this long? I mean, this is the MALL OF AMERICA. It's huge. It must need more Santas than your average mall just to maintain a proper Santa density. And in all the years the mall has been open, and all the Santas they must have hired, none of them were black until one guy this year? For fuck's sake. I guess there's a place for fun if you're white.*

What I wasn't surprised by, of course, was a bunch of white people feeling aggrieved because a tiny, incremental, overdue amount of representation in the portrayal of a fictional marketing-character-turned-into-holiday-myth. Or, to put it in simpler terms, widdums honkys had their feelings all hurted. Allow me to answer your rhetorical questions from various comments threads across the Internet.

Why is this a news story? Because he's the first. In 2017. You ask this every time a minority is the first to break a barrier and the answer's always the same. Because they're the first. It's not divisive to point out when someone breaks through a barrier that's existed for decades. It's the barrier itself that's divisive. Twenty-four years of nothing but white Santas were divisive. If you think it's divisive to have that pointed out to you, that's on you.

What about historical accuracy? Santa Claus isn't real, assholes. Don't bother arguing about the melanin content of the historical St. Nicholas, whether you think it's low or high. We're talking about a jolly red Skinner box parents use to get kids to put their socks in the hamper from mid-November to Boxing Day. Santa's ethnicity isn't a matter of record, it's a matter of choice. Of preference.

What's next, Mr. T as Mr. Clean? OK, this isn't a general question. This is a specific one from USA Today. Mr. Clean, of course, is also a made-up character used to sell shit, just like Santa. I mean, good luck getting Mr. T to shave his mohawk, but maybe we can just take it out digitally. Also, there's a very specific reason Mr. T pities you. Can you guess what it is?

What the fuck is wrong with uou? Oh, sorry, that's not a question you posed verbatim, just a question implied by, for example, the Star Tribune having to shut down their comments section because all you fucking racists couldn't leave well enough alone. All you fuckers are getting lime in your stockings this year. Or some other shitty white rock. Maybe Poison CDs.

* I know there's no fucking way they still use that old slogan I remember from the days when I paid attention to TV commercials for the mall, and I know a not-insignificant fraction of the readership will have never heard the jingle, but dammit, that's a solid joke.