“BREAKFAST WITH SANTA” BANNED
Catalyst January/February Issue 2007
Every year the Sanfordville PTA in Warwick, New York does a fundraiser involving Santa at the local elementary school. Called “Breakfast with Santa,” it draws hundreds of kids on a Saturday, all of whom come voluntarily. But because one anonymous bigot objected this past Christmas—citing religious discrimination—the event was reworked by school lawyers: instead the PTA hosted a “Winter Wonderland Breakfast.” Moreover, Santa had a partner: Frosty the Snowman was ordered to join him.
The bigot, of course, wanted no compromise and wanted Santa removed altogether. According to Darlene Baratto, who was in charge of the event, “We have a beautiful background people can have a picture in front of. That wasn’t good enough. We changed the name, colors, the background. Nothing made her happy. She was not open to anything. We’ll have 300 or so kids who are disappointed.” School superintendent Dr. Frank Greenhall, attempting to be the voice of reason, reassured everyone when he said, “If you make it an issue, the kids will make it an issue.” Now how’s that for leadership? Just shut up and don’t tell the kids why “Breakfast with Santa” has been censored and they won’t know the difference.
There is nothing in the U.S. Constitution, of course, that bans “Breakfast with Santa” from taking place in a public school. This has nothing to do with the law—it has everything to do with bowing to the pressure of bigots. This is the new utilitarianism: the greatest good for the least number of people. And it is just as immoral as its parent principle—the greatest good for the greatest number of people.