Sketchy Santas

Marandah Mangra-Dutcher, Copy Editor

Now that Thanksgiving is over people are stepping into full Christmas Mode. Places have started decorating and selling Christmas themed items and prepping for all things Christmas. This time of year brings all of the above and…mall Santas.

Mall Santas are typically elderly men paid to play the role of Santa for the enjoyment of younger children. Parents flock around the establishment and bring their kids to take photos with Santa and to find out what their children want for Christmas.

When I was younger my mom never really did the whole ordeal. My mom never felt the need to pay someone to get a photo of us with an old man we did not even know. She also felt she had a pretty good idea of what to get us when we were younger. So standing in line for hours upon hours just get a picture with a random dude was not necessary.

Thinking back to it now however, I am happy my mom never felt the need to take my sisters and I to Mall Santas. Now that I am older I find it quite creepy. I understand a lot of them are normally “jolly” souls and play Santa out of the goodness of their hearts, that might not be some of the other’s motives. They could have a different agenda. For example, there was a television show that I watched where the Mall Santa was pick-pocketing the parents. It was purely fiction, however there is no saying that some chose to be mall Santas with that in mind as this situation puts parents in a somewhat vulnerable situation.

Ignoring all of the hypotheticals however, if you consider the basis of Mall Santas, are they not just deceiving small children. Santa has become a figure developed by the commercialization of Christmas and then people are playing a person to fake being that figure is pure deception. These children do not know that this “Santa” is not the really Santa.

I understand that Santa is, to some families, an ideological figure that represents traditions and just the Holiday of Christmas but this is pretty much teaching your children it is okay to lie and deceive.

I know that Mall Santas are really never going to go away. They are a constant that comes with the decorations and joy of the Holidays but I just want the overlooked ideas of this tradition to be acknowledged. This kind of shows some things wrong within our society.