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Belief in Santa supports valuable morals

Santa Claus is believed to leave presents to all the good girls and boys around the world. Photo by Isaiah Williams

When imagining Christmas, one would probably think of twinkling, festive lights, stacks of presents underneath the tree decorated with ornaments, and making memories with family. One of the holiday traditions that many children look forward to include the magical, merry man himself, who is able to deliver presents all around the world in one night: Santa Claus.

As we grow older, however, we learn that Santa isn’t real (awwww), but rather our parents pose as this jolly, cookie-loving figure to leave Christmas presents. However, children are exposed to the truth at different ages. Erin Beatie, Bear River’s Theater Manager, commented on the appropriate age to stop believing in Santa Claus.

“Never,” she said. “The idea of Santa is allowing a more tangible way for children to understand the overall concept of ‘what goes around, comes around,’ and that someone will always take notice of your actions and decisions. If you are good all year and try to do good things, people do notice (regardless of your age) and you will in turn be fortunate due to your efforts. One day, kids realize that Santa isn’t just one magical person, but in reality can be anyone you come in contact with. I will never stop believing in finding the good in people and being the best person I can be; therefore, I will always believe in ‘Santa’.”

Multiple students expressed their thoughts about how believing in the ‘magic’ of Santa Claus is truly important for a child.

“I think its different for every kid, because some parents want to keep their kids innocent and believe in this fairytale to keep them optimistic,” said Junior Alyssa Downes. “So, I wouldn’t say there is a set age, but whenever they find out or you believe it’s good for them to know.”

“Kids shouldn’t lose their wonder with the world until they absolutely need to grow up,” said Sophomore Mariah Lynda. “I think they need to stay naive and innocent till they absolutely need to grow up. I would’ve rather knew about Santa’s nonexistence later in my life.”

“Kids should believe in Santa as long as they can,” said Senior Colby Greig. “It makes them enjoy the holidays and makes it special.”

Downes built upon Greig’s comment.

“Since [belief in Santa is] a widespread thing, if one child knows he’s not real, they can ruin it for the rest of the kids,” she said.

The fictitious character of Santa Claus, also known as Kris Kringle or Saint Nicholas, could be traced all the way back to the third century, when Saint Nicholas himself became a ‘patron saint of children,’ according to The story of Saint Nicholas hints at the reason for creating such a character for children to put their trust into during the holidays, as Mrs. Beatie explained. 

“There is real value in doing the right thing whether someone is looking or not – it’s called integrity,” she said. “Kindness and carrying strong morals is a timeless lesson that is worth passing forward and reinforcing to every generation.”

Several students continued to explain how believing in Santa Claus can teach kids essential lessons to lead a kind life.

“I think that Santa teaches a good lesson: telling kids to be good,” said Lynda.

“With the whole thing of Santa will only bring you presents if you’re good, it teaches kids to try and be good, or else there are punishments for their actions,” said Downes.

Some Christmas songs tell kids that Santa “knows when you’ve been bad or good,” only delivering presents to the good girls and boys. If you aren’t on the ‘nice list,’ you receive a piece of coal in your stocking. 

“I am proud to say I have never received coal in my stocking,” said Mrs. Beatie.

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Belief in Santa supports valuable morals