Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Teacher Robs Kindergarteners of Santa - Innocence Destroyed

This has been happening more often in the last few years.

Bolding is added.

"An Austin, Texas afterschool teacher has one kindergartener’s parents furious after she told students Santa Claus was fake, the Houston Press reported.

Susan Tietz Gammage said her 5-year-old daughter, Aven, came home from Pease Elementary School last week and asked if what Mrs. Fuller said was true.

“She said ‘None of you believe in Santa do you*?’ and said that you and mommy buy all our presents and put them under the tree. She said that you should tell us the truth*,” Gammage said her daughter told them."

*Think about it - The teacher pretends to be under the impression that none of the poor kids really believe in Santa. She is lying with her question. This is like the serpent in Genesis who asked "“Did God really say, ‘You shall not eat from any of the trees in the garden’?” The serpent knew perfectible well that there was no such prohibition. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer in Creation and Fall noted, the serpent, in order to set the table, started out with a question that he knew would require a clarification in response. Only after that did he attack.

** Not only does she dash their innocence and happiness to the ground, she then undermines the parents even further.

I recall the exact same thing happening here in New Jersey a few years ago. The kids were blindsided by a shamefully self-righteous teacher who, in response to a student's question, knew fully well that she was harming the children instead of helping them.

While the report was being discussed on the radio. A caller replied in defense of the teacher and stated emphatically, "What is da problem? She told da troot". 

For those who are unfamiliar with regional accents, the caller, (This was a New York radio station) was indicating that the teacher had done nothing wrong as she had provided what she felt was not a lie.

We have two elements of the collapse of empathy in our culture. The teacher was clearly happy with herself for hurting the feelings of the children and robbing them of one of the best memories of childhood. The caller was operating under the patently false assumption that the "troot"is always OK and that no one can expect the teacher to re-direct the conversation in order to let the kids have their cherished beliefs.

In actuality, even re-directing is not necessary. I have been asked the very same question by little ones and my answer is "Of course I do. I saw him once.". My parents were born and raised in Brooklyn and the Bronx and I obviously learned how to speak from them, so my accent also should be read in to my reply. (Picture me throwing my hands out in front of me like my Neapolitan/Sicilian father when I say "I saw him".)

The belief in Santa Clause, St. Nicholas, Father Christmas, what have you, is a longstanding tradition in many western societies. It has done immeasurably more good than bad. In no way does this intrude upon the celebration of Christ's birth; indeed, the fact that he visits us on the eve of Christ's birth to give gifts, just as did the Magi to the infant Jesus, provides children with an emotional connection with the holiday that they would not have otherwise.

The evil approach of the teacher is becoming more common. No parents can assume that their children will not come home in tears anymore. We have put a huge dent in student-on-student bullying and the void has been filled by adults. Our children are being sacrificed in the name of self-righteous behavior. They go from having Santa torn from them to being told to dress in revealing clothes in a matter of months.

I am not aware of the teachers' backgrounds in either case. In all probability, they were either rabid atheists who take glee in hurting others or hardcore Christian Evangelicals/Fundamentalists who rival atheists in their lack of empathy for the feelings of others. Both operate with the airs of superiority. Both could not care less about the intentions of parents in letting children have such beliefs. Both pretend to think that they are helping people by their cruel acts.

Atheists want to destroy any faith. Evangelicals, in their puritanical minds, tell themselves that St. Nicholas of Myra has no place in the celebration of the birth of Christ. Note that there is also a very large subset of Evangelical/Fundamentalist Christianity that is against the celebration of Christmas altogether (In this case I am not referring to Jehovah's Witnesses).

In the event that the Republic is ever split into two along American and Progressive lines, one of the requirements in the restored American state should be that all adults who work with children sign, as a condition of employment, an agreement to avoid any conversations that are likely to affect a student's personal beliefs in any way.

The real tragedy is that, with the way things are today, nothing will happen to the teacher as a consequence of her shameful act.

For the record. I believe in Santa Claus.

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