AoftheA Has Moved!!!!!

Why are you here? I'm over here now:

Acts of the Apostasy...on WordPress!

Click the link and read all the new stuff! Your friends are over there waiting for you!

Instant "Acts"ess

You're one click away from AoftheA's most recent posts:

Today Is The Day
Get ready for it.
Okay Then, That Was Unexpected...
Church Art Shouldn't Make You Say "Blech!"
Or cringe.
Cardinal Urges Priests To Liven Up Sermons
I got some ideas...
New Translation Objections Are Becoming More Ridiculous
Grasping at straws...
This Comes As No Surprise
Up with the ex-communicated!
Things A Catholic Ought Never Say
Watch your mouth!
Sister Patricia: On Seven Quick-Takes Friday
Catching up with Sr Pat.
Just Thought You'd Like To Know...
A public service announcement.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Santa Claus Given His Walking Papers

Here's the latest example of "Look how dumb things have gotten in the US":

From Town Tries To Save Santa Letter Program

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (Nov. 20) — Santa's "elves" at the North Pole have been given their walking papers, but they're not going quietly.

The volunteer "elves" are trying to counter a decision by the U.S. Postal Service to discontinue a program begun in 1954 in the small Alaskan town of North Pole, where they open and respond to thousands of letters addressed to "Santa Claus, North Pole" each year.

"The city was founded on the Christmas theme," Gabby Gaborik, chief elf among several dozen volunteers, said Thursday. "This is our identity. This is North Pole, Alaska."

Gaborik said he met with Postal Service officials this week to come up with an alternative. He's now working with local government officials to get "101 Santa Claus Lane" as an address for his group, Santa's Mailbag. That way children will have a specific destination for their letters, allowing volunteers to run their own program and bypass stringent new rules implemented by the Postal Service after security issues arose in a similar program in Maryland last year.

Gaborik believes his town's name gives the local effort more cachet than other destinations.

People in North Pole are incensed by the changes. The letter program is a revered holiday tradition in North Pole, where light posts are curved and striped like candy canes and streets have names like Kris Kringle Drive. Volunteers in the letter program even sign the response letters as Santa's elves and helpers.

The North Pole program was stymied by a tighter process put in place nationwide by the Postal Service after a postal worker in Maryland recognized a volunteer with the agency's Operation Santa program as a registered sex offender. The worker intervened before the individual could answer a child's letter, but the agency viewed the scare as a reason to tighten security.

So the Postal Service's definition of "tightening security" is to abolish the entire program, which has been going on since 1954. Yep, that's our government, seeking to kill joy wherever it is found. I can understand their rationale - "We must always protect our children" - but really, let's look at this logically. Postal workers have had access to private addresses since, oh, I don't know, Benjamin Franklin started the US Postal Service in the first place? Every time I put a bill in the mail, someone has access to my address. Every time mail is delivered to my home, someone has access to my address. I'm not convinced this decision was made to protect kids as much as it was made to protect US Postal Service officials from future litigation.

Here's what I think is going to happen next: No more "Meet Santa Claus!" set-ups in the shopping malls, because having kids sit on his lap might give rise to child abuse.