Fear of a Black Santa


Whatever the opposite of a Christmas miracle is, this is going to be one of those for Fox News' Megyn Kelly. Kelly recently covered an op-ed on her show that questioned why Santa is often depicted as a white man. Kelly explained, "Santa just is white." 

But at least one black Santa exists. He's just hidden. 

Animal New York reporter Amy K. Nelson visited the Macy's on 34th Street in New York, where she "heard" there is a black Santa (though she never explains how she "heard" about him in the first place). It's also worth noting that Animal's report is called "Fear of a Black Santa," when no one seems particularly afraid here. 

Anyway, Nelson waits in line at Macy's Santaland Junction and is eventually ushered through a maze to Santa Claus—a white Santa. Amy asks him if he is the only Santa, or if there is another "special Santa."

"I'm the Santa here," white Santa claims, remaining in character. Re: The "special Santa," he explains, "Well, that's me. I'm the special Santa and the everyday Santa and the good-looking Santa and the ugly Santa." 

After leaving the "main" Santa, Nelson asks one of Macy's elves about the "special Santa" and he tells her, "You need to ask an elf in the maze and they'll...set that up for you." Eventually, a staffer brings her to black Santa, stationed in another area of the maze.

Nelson questions black Santa about being the "special" Santa Claus and he explains, "I'm Santa, there's only one Santa!" When asked about Megyn Kelly, he good naturedly replies, "I've heard of this story, but Santa hasn't had much time to really sit down and watch much TV."

This isn't Macy's only black Santa: The company also has a black Santa in their South L.A. store. Though when asked about race of their Santas, N.Y. Daily News quotes the store as saying, "It's not Macy's policy to have Santa speak about race or religion."

As we all know, Santa probably was not white. Santa is definitely made up.

So yes, it is nice that Macy's is offering an alternative take on the depiction of Santa. It makes the experience more inclusive to kids who aren't white. But the secretiveness surrounding this "special Santa" (and the fact that he's even called the "special" Santa) is really bizarre. And as seemingly nice of a gesture as it is, it's also problematic.

Not to mention the fact that he is, more or less, hidden (the Santa who is clearly the "main" Santa is white. Langston Patterson, the black Santa at the South L.A. Macy's is the "main" Santa, but that store is located in a predominately black neighborhood).

Plus, it's all just very, very weird.

In the interest of being, as they say, "fair and balanced," Megyn Kelly later commented on the controversy she caused with her "Santa is white" comments, saying it was humor "lost on the humorless." 

She continued, "This would be funny if it were not so telling about our society, in particular the knee-jerk instinct by so many to race-bait, and to assume the worst in people, especially people employed by the very powerful Fox News Channel." Which is as patronizing as it is self-unaware.

Watch Animal's full report here: 

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