One of the more precious stories that has become part of American Christmas folklore over the years involves a little girl named Virginia O’Hanlon. Her circumstances are so well known that most educated Americans will be familiar with her without knowing anything about her, including her last name.
In 1897, an eight-year-old Virginia asked her father if there really was a Santa Claus. Her father instructed her to write her question in the form of a letter to the Sun, which was a major New York City newspaper at the time. She did, and a few days later, one of the paper’s editors, Francis Pharcellus Church, responded with what would become the most reprinted newspaper editorial in the English language.
“Yes, Virginia,” he told her, “there is a Santa Claus.”
You can read the editorial in its entirety here. And before any of us condemns it for its treacly moralizing—not to mention its outright mendacity—we should remember that the editorial served two purposes which are as important today as ever. One, it reminds us of why we must protect our children for as long as possible from the realities of life. The world can be a cruel place, and hope is in short supply for many. The best way to improve our future and to give meaning to our struggles now is to encourage our children to be less cruel and more hopeful than we are, so that when they grow up perhaps they can succeed where we have failed.
The other purpose the editorial served was to guilt adults into letting up on their cruelty and their hopelessness, at least for the Christmas holidays, so we can all pretend that the world is a little nicer than it really is. It may sound hokey, but if a little hokiness once a year can give millions of people some comfort and relief, then why not be a little hokey? As Church explains:
Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.
This may sound sweet and noble, but the problem with such willful naivete, however, is that we’ve come to apply it now to adults, not just to children. More specifically, liberal whites tend to apply it to non-whites, especially blacks, whom they essentially view as children. The parallel here is indeed remarkable. Francis Pharcellus Church used the exact same kid gloves with Virginia as modern liberal whites use with black people. With the former, Santa is the lie which underscores the romantic desire for the world to become a more peaceful and loving place. With the latter, however, Equality is the lie. Equality is how whites project their romantic desire for blacks to become more peaceful and loving, and, well, less black.
The difference here is that is that, unlike Francis Pharcellus Church, liberal whites don’t realize they’re lying (or at least they would never admit in public that they’re lying). The result is that for blacks—thanks to the Santa Claus-like generosity of the Democratic Party—every day is Christmas.
In a thought experiment to test this Equality-as-Santa hypothesis, let’s switch out the word “Virginia” in Church’s editorial with “Black People,” and “Santa Claus” with “Equality.” Also, any reference to “men” (as opposed to children) should be replaced with a reference to whites, and any reference to children or childhood should be replaced with similar references to blacks. Here is what you would get (with changes in bold):
Black People, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Black People, whether they be whites’ or blacks’, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.
Yes, Black People, there is Equality. It exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Equality. It would be as dreary as if there were no Black People. There would be no black-like faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which blackness fills the world would be extinguished.
“Not believe in Equality! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire whites to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Equality, but even if they did not see Equality coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Equality, but that is no sign that there is no Equality. The most real things in the world are those that neither blacks nor whites can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.
“You may tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest whites, nor even the united strength of all the strongest whites that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Black People, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.
“No Equality! Thank God! It exists, and it exists forever. A thousand years from now, Black People, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, it will continue to make glad the heart of black people.”
Okay, so it’s not perfect. But it is pretty close, isn’t it?
“They do not believe except they see.” This is exactly how liberals condemn race realists today. When we complain about black crime and point to statistics to back up our claims, when we assert that there are intelligence differences among the races and point to psychometric data to support these assertions, they accuse us, essentially, in not believing in Santa Claus, of believing in only what we can see. They accuse us of lacking “love and generosity and devotion.” They say we have “no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight.”
No enjoyment except in sense and sight! Does this justify ignoring sense and sight? Does this mean we must blindly accept the romantic notion of racial equality without scrutinizing the evidence or considering its impact? What was initially intended to inspire a child to keep her sense of wonder and innocence has hoodwinked blacks and other non-whites into keeping their sense of entitlement and resentment. Because, of course, if Equality is real, then only foul play on the part of whites can explain why Inequality even exists at all.
This has to end now. We must believe in what we can sense and see. We must give up romantic ideas of racial equality, which is simply not backed up by facts. Just as importantly, we must stop infantilizing black people. These are not innocent children who require coddling. These are a race of people who are more violent and prone to crime and chaos than any other race, to say nothing of their abysmally low average IQ. They are, as a group, a threat to the social and cultural cohesion of any nation they inhabit, including their own. They are, in a word, dangerous. This is the Truth. When they understood it, and we understood it (for example during the pre-Civil Rights era in the United States) racial integration worked tolerably well. Since then, we have both fallen from the path and proved that multi-racialism really doesn’t work very well after all. As a nation, we have become more racially divided than we were when we had actual laws dividing the races.
There’s another thing too. It’s egotistical and presumptuous to condescend to grownups. That is essentially what liberals are doing when they lie to blacks about Equality and fan the fires of their anti-white anger. I’ve always despised this charade. I may not want to have blacks as countrymen and would dearly like to keep them out of white ethnostates, but I’ve never seen any reason not to treat the respectful ones with respect in turn. I’ve always tried to be a kind and honest person. Unfortunately, I could never truly be that way around blacks because all the ones I knew expected whites to lie to them in one way or another about Equality. This has led to my shunning blacks in my later adult life.
There was exactly one exception, and since this is a Christmas essay, and we are supposed to provide uplifting stories about peace, love, and goodwill on Christmas, I will share it with you.
Years ago, I worked with an older black gentleman, whom we will call Samuel. And he was a gentleman, if anything. He behaved impeccably at work. His rich sense of humor made him impossible not to like. He was a committed bachelor who was approaching 60. He always dressed up for the office even though the job itself didn’t even qualify as business casual. Unfortunately, he was also a bit of a loser, largely because he had failed several times in establishing the career he trained for in college and graduate school. He was stuck in the same dead-end job I was, so we both had a few good laughs about it. Most importantly, Samuel had a mind. He liked to read literature, especially white literature, and we often found ourselves discussing Shakespeare or Twain or any number of writers. He once explained to me why James Baldwin reminded him of Eugene O’Neill.
I had a hard enough time finding white people in the office with whom to discuss literature. And here comes this black gentleman with some pretty interesting insights on canonical scribes. What was going to do? Not talk to him?
Impressed as I was, I was still cagey with him because of the race issue. But after a while, I figured I’d let him know where I stood about it. The Bell Curve had recently been published and I was reading it. Once, when one of our discussions drifted into politics, I made it delicately clear that I agreed with that book and with a race realist perspective in general, which colored much of my political perspective. This made him visibly uncomfortable, and he didn’t speak to me for a few days.
Afterward however Samuel apologized. He said he had felt some anger towards me, but that he had gotten over it. Then he looked me in the face and, with as much dignity as he could muster, said to me, “We are inferior. African-Americans are inferior people.”
Have you ever felt the exquisite relief of knowing that you can truly be yourself around someone? That you don’t have to put up a wall to protect yourself against people who’d just as soon attack you? I took in a deep, open breath and felt much of the tension I had been feeling melt away. I shook his hand and said, “Thank you. I can treat you like an equal now.”
I’m sure this wasn’t the kind of accord Francis Pharcellus Church intended when he wrote his famous editorial. After all, Virginia O’Hanlon wasn’t his equal. She was a child, and Church dealt with her question in a perfectly appropriate manner . . . for a child. But what he didn’t tell Virginia, and what whites desperately need to tell black people today, is that, child or no, Santa only comes but once a year, and not every day is Christmas.
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