December 14, 2003


Or not, as may be the case if you live in England:

A church has been told that it cannot publicise its Christmas services on a community notice board to avoid offending other religions.

CHRISTMAS! CHRISTMAS! CHRISTMAS with JESUS and HOLINESS! Man, itís so easy to be offensive these days. Meanwhile, Seth Efrica is now Santa-free:

South Africa's Advertising Standards Authority has banned the Post Office from inviting children to write to Father Christmas, on the grounds that it would mislead them, the SAPA news agency reported Wednesday.

A Post Office commercial gave children an address to which they could write to Santa Claus with their Christmas lists, but Cape Town journalist Andrew October told the authority that unless the Post Office intended to give the children the gifts they were asking for, the commercial should be canned, SAPA reported.

October said the ad encouraged "a falsehood that could break the fragile spirits of the already disillusioned youth of South Africa".

Octoberís CV reveals that he is ďavailable immediately and will consider ALL suitable positions.Ē How about joyless bastard? The pay isnít great, but at least you get to stomp on kids.

Posted by Tim Blair at December 14, 2003 01:35 AM

The guy seems to have difficulty with basic logic and/or language, too: if the problem is that South African youth are already excessively disillusioned, how can it possibly help to remove another cherished illusion?

Posted by: Dr. Weevil at December 14, 2003 at 01:47 AM

If its christmas cheer your looking for then I would recommend that people buy the print edition of the Spectator. The Comic Viz have done a one off cartoon strip just for the Spectator. I don't want to give it away but any comic strip which features Mark Steyn beating Saddam in a snowman building contest can't be bad.

Posted by: Ross at December 14, 2003 at 01:59 AM

Surely a society that supinely tolerates this kind of thing will neither survive long as a civic culture nor deserve to.

Posted by: sue at December 14, 2003 at 02:16 AM

In my posting immediately above I mean, of course, England, not South Africa.

Posted by: sue at December 14, 2003 at 02:22 AM

The one thing these countries cannot stand is for the people to have any source of hope but the government.

Posted by: Andrew at December 14, 2003 at 02:23 AM

"Santa-free"? I believe the term you are looking for is Christkindlrein.

Posted by: Ken Summers at December 14, 2003 at 02:46 AM

RE: England:

Perhaps those involved would like to hear from us, regarding their decisions. Here's Ms. Dewar's information page:

Posted by: Odious at December 14, 2003 at 03:00 AM

"South Africa's Advertising Standards Authority has banned the Post Office from inviting children to write to Father Christmas, on the grounds that it would mislead them, the SAPA news agency reported Wednesday."

That's a damn reasonable piece of work. It's about time this pagan myth was recognized as the abomination it is! Good for them!

Posted by: Anti-Claus at December 14, 2003 at 03:34 AM

I'm glad Colonel Harry Shoup understood about children and Christmas.

Posted by: Donnah at December 14, 2003 at 05:06 AM

DO the English have a Bill of Rights? If not You should have got them in writing. Those implied rights are the bitch.

How does one say "Fuck nozzle" in afrikkan? Used in a sentence? As in "Andrew October is a fuck nozzle"

He would do better dispelling that illusion about raping virgins being a cure for AIDS.

Posted by: papertiger at December 14, 2003 at 05:52 AM

Are falsehoods that make you feel good OK, and those that aren't bad?

Let's stamp out lies wherever they are, no matter how dear they are held.

Posted by: daniel at December 14, 2003 at 11:19 AM

You first. I look forward to your account of telling your significant other that no, that dress does not make her look fat, she is fat.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at December 14, 2003 at 11:21 AM

What's this about Santa being false? Isn't Santa coming this year? Tell me your kidding.

Posted by: LB at December 14, 2003 at 12:08 PM

Yeah. The promotion of Santa is the major pressing social issue facing South Africans today, once they get rid of the old bastard they'll never have any problems again.

Maybe October got knocked back for the job of mall Santa and he just snapped.

Posted by: gaz at December 14, 2003 at 02:01 PM

Andrew October told the truth. The sooner humans learn the truth, the better.

Posted by: daniel at December 14, 2003 at 03:10 PM

Daniel's right. We shouldn't be living a lie, and we ought not be teaching things to people only to have them get hurt when they learn the truth the hard way.

So, I will begin our healing by sharing a painful truth that needs to come out. Here goes:

Daniel, you are a jerk. The kids in your neighborhood think you're the Grinch's ugly brother, they suspect you're a perv, and it's only a matter of time until they start hucking rocks through your windows on a dare. Also, your mom never really liked you, and secretly felt your dad was at fault due to his lousy genes. She really ought to have married that other guy back when she had a chance. She only married your dad out of a misplaced sense of pity.

Wow. That felt really good! And aren't we all better off for having shared this truth? I sure think I am.

Posted by: Tom K at December 14, 2003 at 04:25 PM

At my daughters school they're teaching her the song...

"I'm dreaming of a white WINTER.

Just like the ones I used to know..."

Posted by: mo skrilla at December 14, 2003 at 04:58 PM

"A spokesman for the Tory-controlled council confirmed the distinction, explaining that because the service contained Christian prayers it was against policy".

Damn PC conservatives!!!! They're all the same.

Posted by: Sincerity Slips at December 14, 2003 at 05:03 PM

In other news, running with scissors has been shown to actually benefit your health.

Posted by: Osamas Psychotic Proctologist at December 14, 2003 at 05:05 PM

I may be a jerk. The sooner i'm informed, the quicker i can reform. The truth hurts sometimes, but it always is the best policy.

Posted by: daniel at December 14, 2003 at 07:16 PM

daniel - why on earth do other people's opinions (that you are a jerk) mean that you need to reform? I'm a jerk, everyone says so, and I have no intention of changing.

WTF is an "Advertising Standards Board", and where does it get off banning anyone from saying anything they damn well please? Will Post Office officials go to jail if they tell this Board to stuff it, and keep on with the Santa Clausing?

Posted by: R C Dean at December 14, 2003 at 10:00 PM