Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Believing in Santa

A school has apologised for telling a class of nine and ten year olds that Santa Claus does not exist. 'As a school,' says the headteacher Jackie Jackson, 'we delight in the magic of childhood and believe that Christmas is a special time.' Parents had complained. 'What gives the school the right to decide when children should know the truth about such a harmless matter when knowing the truth does take away that little bit of magic?' asked one. Behind our delight in sustaining children's belief in Santa lies a very anti-Dawkins assumption - that we are better off believing. And so we are. Anyway, I believe in Santa. He left me some excellent Issey Miyake socks last year. Only Santa could possibly have known how richly I deserved them.


  1. Anti-Dawkins? Holy crap! I must dash home and disabuse my children of their irrational beliefs right now. Santa could very well be a gateway belief that could lead to more serious, wacky beliefs later on. If only I had known. Thanks Bryan.

  2. I must admit I find this a tricky issue. It is fun to see his excitement coming up to Christmas, but I feel a bit guilty talking about Santa to my 6 year old, as I know from past experience that some smart and sensitive children are pretty upset to find out the truth. (Others take it in their stride, I know.) What worries me most is the example this gives for belief in their parent's religion.

    Even though I am on the opposite side of the fence from Dawkins, it is because I take the issue of faith and belief seriously that I don't really like making a game of it.

    Sorry to be serious about a lighthearted topic!

  3. Are you sure those socks weren't from Jeffrey Archer?

  4. Jeffrey does not shop in Issey Miyake, trust me on this.

  5. A Santa letter arriving through the mail at Christmas is a magical moment especially for Children, when you see the look on their faces it makes you feel warm inside, knowing that your Children are thinking of Santa and friends.

    Have a great Christmas! Santas Editor