What’s Wrong with a Black Santa?

BY: - 5 Dec '13 | On the Web

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This is the billboard that was put up in a dorm at the Indiana University (This photo is courtesy of IU Student TV/WTHR)

One of the most beautiful Santas that I have ever seen in my life was a Black Santa.  He was at The Mall West End in Atlanta, Georgia.  He had this beautiful gray beard and this long beautiful gray hair (I think they may have been dreadlocks if I am recalling correctly.)  It’s been a long time since I have seen him.  But I have not seen one as beautiful as that Santa…he just left that kind of impression on my mind.  (By the way, they still have a black Santa at that mall.)

My mom has black Santas all over her home and we have a Black Santa tree topper.  So my kids are used to seeing both white and black Santas.  And I think many African American kids are also accustomed to seeing both Black and White Santa Claus.

The Community Education Program at Indiana University (that promotes diversity at the school) put up a billboard depicting a Black Santa. The billboard showed a Black Santa playing the saxophone.  And it asks: “Can Santa Claus Be a Black Man?”  The school took down the billboard after receiving a backlash. As reported by theGrio:

According to NBC-affiliate WTHR, the billboard was posted with the intention of prompting students to think about difficult issues – instead, it left much distaste and disapproval.

“I was completely appalled with it,” IU freshman Alexus Johnson told the local news station.

Follow-up questions were posted on cut-out paper stockings and asked: “Would he only visit the ghetto?” “Would you let him come down your chimney?” and “Wouldn’t all the presents be stolen?”

The follow-up questions that were on the paper stockings on the billboard (about Santa stealing and visiting the ghetto) were definitely offensive to me. And I think they could have sparked a conversation about diversity simply by making the Santa black and seeing what response the students had to the Black Santa. Here is what the University had to say about it on twitter:

 

Indiana University_Black Santa Tweet

If they really want to see a revolt…then why don’t put up a Black Jesus. But I will save that topic for another post.


Thelma And Michael Of Good Times Talk “Black…

BMWK – what are your thoughts on this?  Did you grow up seeing Black Santa? 

Featured Image: This is the billboard that was put up in a dorm at the Indiana University (This photo is courtesy of IU Student TV/WTHR)

About the author

Ronnie Tyler wrote 397 articles on this blog.

Ronnie Tyler is the co-creator of BlackandMarriedWithKids.com and co-producer of the films Happily Ever After: A Positive Image of Black Marriage, You Saved Me, Men Ain't Boys and Still Standing. The proud mom of 4 has been selected by Parenting Magazine as a Must-Read Mom and is one of Babble's Top 100 Mom Bloggers.

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2 WordPress comments on “What’s Wrong with a Black Santa?

  1. DMV Santa Stallings

    Growing up in NYC my parents made it a tradition to take my brothers and sisters and I to get our Christmas photo taken with Santa. We had some with white males and some with black males. We enjoyed both versions but was excited to see the Black Santa.

    If we are supposed to be a united Nation then accepting all forms of cultural represtation should not be an issue. Obviously we have pockets of society that does not accept the diversity of today. IU students have no problem filling seats at their athletic venues to watch the black students perform in their choice of sport. Now that Black Santa image appears there seems to be an issue? The university needs to revisit their diversity department and find resources to educate the community to acknowledge that people come in many different shapes, sizes, and color.

    I hope the image of Black Santa is restored and the community will accept the version to allow other citizens to see a face that they can identify with.

    Happy holidays.

    DMV Santa Stallings. The Black version.

    Reply
  2. Omari

    I moved to South bend, IN in 2008, and had my first racist experience at the age of 28, before I moved to IN, from PA. I always thought racism did not exist, and everyone just needed to complain, or blame others. Here I am at the age of 30, understanding completely how difficult life is just being an African American or Black (none American).

    In 2012 I moved to FL, and I have to be honest, the fear I had in IN such as not finding work, failing in school, and being mocked because of the color of my skin has followed me here to FL, and the sad thing is I’m surrounded by Hispanics from Porto Rico knowing they consider themselves to be black as well yet still, mentally I prepare myself everyday to take out any racist enemy that (tries) to hurt me. Physically, or (mentally). Sad thing is I was raised by Surfer’s and Skate boarders.

    Growing up in a world were Racism is supposed to be a fairy tale, takes a very huge punch to reality when actually experiencing it.. yet wondering the very same question without no clear, factual, or even logical reasoning as to (why) Caucasians HATE us so much? I mean really can you tell us (white man) Why? I mean a real reason, not because of some childish, or immature reason such as we eat all the (chicken) or to dark to see at night. I mean a real reason (logical, scientifically proven, and Factual) reasoning. Just like (you) people have created, and written the Dictionary, and expected everyone on the planet to read and study without question, or compromise other wise labeled as less superior then the white man.

    It is only wright, and it only makes sense to actually voice real proven reasons why we (black, African Americans) or Hated without question. For to fix a problem, one must know, and learn of the mistakes one is doing before he / she can fix them. If we (black) people can hope to fix what is pissing white people off so passionately we must figure out Why, then attempt to fix it so that we can move. On, Also White people have held us back as a people physically, and mentally and every possible evil way imaginable to the human mind, and as a Nation because of this retarded, misguided focus on us, to the point that our country is always in danger from real problems from other countries, as well as domestic issues.

    Yet the only thing white people care about is how to bring us down, and keep us down. I dare to say this to every black man in this country, including our President of the United States of America, This country hates Black people, and the Laws in which we hope to rely on only works for white people, and those with money, which ( white people,) well always make sure we wont see unless we be little ourselves in order to make a few dollars just like the slave companies that hire 90% of their work force titled ( AWS) or other wise known as Anthony Wayne Services, based in South Bend, IN and other locations.

    AWS Mainly hires blacks from Africa, and anywhere they can be located while keeping a very small number of whites on board wiping the asses of mentally challenged people. Now I have nothing against mentally challenged people, after all I worked for them for 2 yrs, before I moved. I know, and experienced, just how racist that co. truly is. It seems that the entire state of IN is against Blacks, and it shows even in the police departments, and other legal departments that have sworn to protect, but what we really see is that they have sworn to protect, whites, and neglect blacks. So what do we do as a people about these issues?

    The answer is simple: Fire vs Fire Instead of acting like barbaric monkeys as (whites) like to call us, we need to control our legal department, just like our president, has successfully done; get into every control corner this country has to offer to make life easier, better, and just plain enjoyable for us as a people and NOT just for blacks, but for everyone.

    I say this because until we can seize control, instead complaining, and complaining, and complaining, we must show them ( whites) that we are not stupid, we do not eat banana’s all day and scratch our rear ends cus we are to stupid, uneducated enough to stop shooting each other, and realize that we do have the ability think, act, pursue, and control our own future’s and dreams without the need to of white people, and destroy only out of fear of that, which they do not understand, and can only understand one thing (destruction) what they can not understand.

    Lastly I say this, if we (blacks) can not live a stress (free) (AMERICAN) life style without situations like Trayvon Martin, and watching whites party because of it. The the only answer is very clear. GET OUT OF AMERICA!! BEFORE IT’S TO LATE!!! this country hates us, and they show us in the way they treat our president alone. Should we keep acting like white people are not racist, is just as making the same mistake I have all these years will only lead to one thing (your own foot up your ass!!!) for believing other wise!!. While they will always and continue to laugh in our face with the same thought ( you retarded ass Nigger!!) We must wake up, We must prove to ourselves, we must take our children off the street, and clean them, feed them, and keep them from gangs, cus there knowledge is great, yet they are misguided very misguided. For (most) blacks today only care about fashion, sex, and drug money, I understand how could they not it’s in our music, films, and social status.

    We all are the same, only the sun has determined who lives and dies through extreme elements over the entire development of man kind until; white people, see this we will surely continue to die, physically, emotionality, and mentally by any means they can kill us if we let them. Not all whites are racist, but things have gotten so bad its like trying to determine a needle from the fields of glass. I wish every black person in the U.S Good Luck, with your lives, and even though I have not meet you, cried with you, laughed with you, or stand side by side through many of your life changing trials, please know that I’m with you. Always defend yourself, because no one else will especially seeing how we are away from home (Africa) Take care

    H.F

    Reply
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