Scoot: Should the image of Santa change to fit the world today?

Leave Santa alone!

December 19, 2018 - 12:37 pm

Santa Claus does not reflect modern times, but should that matter?

It is believed that the image of Santa Claus that we will see today was introduced into Western pop culture at the end of the 18th century. Throughout our lives, the image of Santa has not changed, with the exception of the introduction of black Santas. Santa is still Santa, but is it time to modernize the image of Santa Claus to more reflect society today?

A new online survey conducted by GraphisSprings shows that some people think the image of the traditional Santa should be changed to fit modern pop culture. According to the survey, 18% said that Santa should lose the classic red-and-white suit and should be wearing skinny jeans. 20% said that Santa should have tattoos, and 22% want Santa to replace his sleigh with a flying car.  21% said Santa should go on a diet?  So instead of leaving cookies and milk out for Santa, should families start leaving a protein bar and an energy drink for Santa?  Finally, 23% think it’s time for Santa to deliver his presents through Amazon Prime.

This is outrageous! The image of Santa has remained consistent over the decades. Santa was not changed to fit pop culture in the 1960s. In the 60s, Santa had long hair and a beard. Wait – that did reflect the 60s. But the image of Santa was not changed to fit the 70s ore the 80s. If this question had come up in the 80s we would have been talking about Santa having Bon Jovi-type big hair.

Imagine if the image of Santa was updated to fit pop culture in the 90s? Would Santa have worn loose-fitting jeans with a plaid flannel shirt tired around his waist and Dr. Martens? If Santa were totally updated to fit into society in 2018, would he have to be gender-neutral?

Shouldn’t some traditions be allowed to remain unchanged in the context of a changing world? Let’s be honest – during that time in life when belief in Santa Claus is a reality to children – they are too young to make an analytical assessment of Santa’s style in relation to modern society.

Leave Santa alone!

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