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Black, gay Santa causes uproar


CARLOS ATWELL, [email protected]

Black, gay Santa causes uproar

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If a picture tells a thousand words, then what does a picture of a black Santa Claus planting a kiss on his white husband say?

Does it speak to equality, acceptance and a changing world dynamic or is it a sinister attempt to push certain agendas disguised under the guiseof the aforementioned themes?

As with many things, it all depends on whom you ask. This particular picture is part of a children’s book named Santa’s Husband, which has been garnering rave reviews as well as controversy overseas. A social media post suggested it was on sale here in Cave Shepherd, but this was quickly refuted.

 

Rumours

 

“When the rumours started circulating, the higher-ups asked us about it and we made checks. We never stocked the book; our suppliers never supplied us with it either and we would probably never stock such a book. It was just one of those nasty rumours,” saida representative.

The WEEKEND NATION also checked a number of other bookstores, such as The Book Den, Pages, Myone Urban Gardens, Cloister and the Book Source, none of which stocked the book. One store said it would never do so as it promoted Christian values, while another said it would order the book shouldan individual desire it.

A partial synopsis on google books called it “a fresh twist on Kris Kringle, a clever yet heartfelt book that tells the story of a black Santa, his white husband, and their life in the North Pole. In this witty illustrated Christmas tale, humour writer Daniel Kibblesmith introduces us to Mr and Mr Claus, and gives us a glimpse of their lives together.

In the book, the “husband” bearsa striking resemblance to the traditional Santa Claus. On Twitter some described the book as “disgusting” and “crazy”, accusing it of confusing innocent children, but many tweeted their excitement at having ordered it.

The WEEKEND NATION spoke to a church leader as well as a human and gay rights activist about their thoughts on the book.

President of the Barbados Baptist Convention, pastor Vincent Wood gave it an emphatic “one thousand times no”.

“God created man then animals. He looked at them and said they were not suitable for Adam as mates so he performed the first surgery and created woman. When I look at this, there is no way I can subscribe, endorse or support two men or two women being together sexually. . . . worse yet, this book is being packaged for children,” he said.

However, co-founder of Barbados Gays, Lesbians and All-Sexuals against Discrimination(B-GLAD), Donnya Piggott, called out the hypocrisy she saw as evident in Barbadian society and said the book went beyond sexual orientation and also spoke to racial equality.

“That sounds lovely; it speaks to inclusion and representation which is important, because black people in the Caribbean often see white characters and hardly any black representation in children’s movies and cartoons – Santa is one of them,”she said

“It’s lovely that Santa has a husband though I’m sure there’s nothing else that suggests that besides the mention of it. Just like the black representation of a Santa, inclusive images make up a diversity of families as well. Barbados doesn’t have to be ready for it, it exists in a world that we often communicate, trade and build relationships with,” she said.

As for the hypocrisy, she said some of the people who would speak out against Santa’s Husband would be “quite comfortable with children dancing in ways that are provocative and best left for adults.” (CA)

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