REAL LIFE

Woman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-Neutral

Date December 11, 2019 10:11

The concept of gender-neutral language is one that's being learned by a lot of people, thanks to the changing times. According to ABC, this idea was borne out of breaking away from the social conditioning attached to certain things.

For example, people have used such words as 'fireman,' 'policeman,' 'chairman' and so on for many years. And while it has always been acceptable, it does give the underlying idea that only the male gender is recognized in these positions decades ago.

The purpose of adopting gender-neutral language is to ensure that professions and other similar age-old terms do not recognize just one gender in its name, thereby giving the idea that women can hold such positions too.

Woman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutralWoman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutralAsier Romero / Shutterstock.com

A gender-neutral Santa

Even though he's popularly known as 'Santa Claus,' there are some parts of the world where the Christmas holiday figure is referred to as 'Father Christmas.'

Woman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutralWoman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutralEvgeny Atamanenko / Shutterstock.com

However, because the word has 'father' in it, people have wondered if it's time to change the expression. According to the UK Sun, there were mixed feelings after a poll was published to see how people responded to the idea of renaming Santa Claus and choosing a gender-neutral term.

Mom faces the wrath of the internet

A mother was taken aback when she was shamed for referring to Santa as Father Christmas. Evidently, some people accept Santa as gender-neutral enough so they felt that was what the mom should have used.

Woman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutralWoman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutraldawdawdPressmaster / Shutterstock.com

According to PlymouthHerald, the unnamed parent said she didn't understand exactly why the shaming took place.

She reportedly said:

I've just been shamed [on a Facebook group] for using the name 'Father Christmas' and [told] that 'Santa' is now seen as gender neutral. I was only referring to the book ['Father Christmas' by Raymond Briggs] but it's left me a little confused/on edge...

Woman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutralWoman Sparks Social Media Fury For Referring To Santa As 'Father Christmas' Because That Name Isn't Gender-NeutralSad christmas days for lonely woman at hometommaso79 / Shutterstock.com

Se then went on to add:

I have a small child and don't really want to raise him saying 'Father Christmas' if it's hurtful to some.

Reactions

The woman's revelations sparked more arguments on social media. Many people took her side and insisted that she had a right to call Santa whatever name she chose to.

While the concept of making changes to gender-specific terms have been largely embraced, some may draw the line at renaming historical figures and characters. So it's understandable that a matter like this will spark some debate. Where do you stand on this argument?

Christmas Santa Claus