02:24 GMT02 March 2021
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    A new story published this week questioned whether or not children ought to be forced to sit on Santa Claus’ lap in the era of the #MeToo movement.

    Washington Post gender and family issues reporter Samantha Schmidt published a story called “Should crying children sit on Santa’s lap for photos? Here’s why some parents are saying no.”

    READ MORE: 'Are You Still a Believer in Santa': Trump Asks Child During NORAD Calls

    The reporter suggested that a “photo with Santa is still a childhood rite of passage for many Americans,” but some parents have “begun questioning the way the culture approaches photos with Santa amid the #MeToo movement and a national conversation over how to teach young children about consent and physical boundaries.”

    Schmidt implied that forcing children to sit on Santa’s lap for photos sends a message that could heavily impact young girls in particular. “Some say it’s a matter of simply listening to children and not forcing them to follow through with photos if they are scared or uneasy. Others have opted out of taking their children to meet Santa in the first place,” she wrote.

    Schmidt also cited a developmental psychologist who feels “lessons about consent and unwanted touching should start early, and parents could use the holiday tradition as an opportunity to teach children that they are in control of their bodies.” The reporter added that most “Santas are taught to make sure their hands are always visible” during the holiday photo shoots.

    However, this debate made Twitter users laugh as the ‘dilemma’ about sitting on Santa’s lap sounded to many like an overreaction.

    Most users pointed out that the article about Santa was an example of the MeToo movement trying to insert a political subtext into an innocent tradition. Schmidt herself acknowledged the criticism, noting that “for many parents, merely putting Santa in the same sentence as #MeToo is an absurd overreaction.”


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    MeToo, article, Twitter, report, Santa Claus, US
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