by Kenneth Justice
~ Yesterday was December 1st and even before I arrived to the coffee house I knew what the conversation was going to be; Santa Claus. Every year when December 1st rolls into town, like clockwork, the conversation over Santa Claus roars into the coffee shop like a noisy sleigh being pulled by magical bell wearing reindeer.
Some people really hate Santa Claus and some people really love Santa Claus.
—-) “Why in this day and age would we want to parade around our children a fat piece of lard wearing a red jumper?! We might as well teach our children to eat cookies as snacks and fat burgers for breakfast lunch and dinner!!” said one concerned mother of three (she’s a big proponent in the anti-fast food movement and teaching children to eat healthy if you didn’t notice by her comments).
—-) “I believe Santa Claus is a great tradition to teach our children” said a late twenty-something father of a three year old, “Children need traditions and Santa Claus is pure innocent fun. He is a great reminder to children that the holiday is about giving and not receiving” he said
—-) “I did NOT teach my children to believe in Santa Claus; I wanted them to trust me so I never lied to them about some mystical elf who lives in the artic and loves for children to bounce around on his lap. Of course I taught my children to be respectful of others and they didn’t let the cat out of the bag when it came to their friends; but my children were raised to be 21st century adults!” said a sixty something retired father of three
Personally, I love Christmas, and Hanukkah, and pretty much every other holiday on the calendar. If you’ve read any of my articles you know how much I value traditions and passing them down to younger generations. Hell, my entire daily routine is one long tradition; each morning I go to coffee, read the news, write in my journal, write a little article for my blog, and try to clear my mind for the day ahead.
I love traditions. Whether it’s the ceremonial “Play ball” yelled by an umpire at a ball game, Brazil’s Naked Sunday Soccer game tradition (not what you think), the tradition of lighting advent candles during Christmas, or simply my little tradition of coffee every morning…..I LOVE traditions.
I also love conversation. I love that people enjoy arguing over Santa Claus. I’m not talking about heated arguments that end with a halberd deathblow to the skull, but the innocent arguments of jovial holiday fare.
We live in a day-and-age where arguments and disagreements are frowned upon; people get offended so easily. I’m not sure what perpetuated this current condition of people getting so angry if you disagree with them. This past year I wrote a series of articles about scientists and my concern that they aren’t always practicing good science and one would have thought that I was declaring jihad on science; my email box was filled to overflowing with hate mail from scientists who were incensed that I dare question their conclusions.
Why do people get offended so easily?
Perhaps I’m living in the dark ages but I actually believe it is healthy to disagree. It helps us to grow as individuals and deepens our ability to look at ideas and situations from different perspectives. I was always taught that people who only hang out with similar minded clusters are living in cults, and I tend to agree.
I don’t want a cadre of friends and colleagues that agree with me on every jot and tittle. So I’m always thankful for so many in my life who aren’t afraid to speak their mind, and I’m always sad for those who live in cloisters where they have shut out everyone in their life who disagrees.
As far as Santa Claus goes, I do believe in Santa Claus Virginia, he visit’s my coffee house every year in December and drinks a Cinnamon Dolce Latte.
Just a few thoughts as I sipped my coffee this morning,
Categories: Culture & Society