NORAD, The North American Aerospace Defense Command, has unveiled its official NORAD Santa Tracker for 2013 so that families around the world can watch Santa as he leaves the North Pole on his sleigh to deliver this year’s assortment of presents. You can watch live and in real time as Rudolph and the reindeer ferry Santa around the world.
As is typical in this generation there has to be some level of controversy surrounding the initiative. The Huffington Post reports that there are certain parent’s groups that are upset that the website shows American fighter jets escorting Santa as he leaves the North Pole. The groups are claiming that Santa should not be combined with a sense of militarism or promotion of the United States Military.
The Boston-based Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood says that by flanking Santa with fighter jets that the US military is adding a level of violence to something that should be 100% about wholesomeness and fun for kids.
A spokesman for the US Military, U.S. Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, says he understands critics point but disagrees with their assessment of the holiday traditions. Davis said:
“We really do feel strongly that it’s something that is safe and non-threatening, and not something that would negatively impact children,” he said. “In fact, we think that it’s a lot of fun. This is very much a fun and safe and nonviolent site that children of all ages can visit. Parents can be confident their children will walk away (and) have had fun and potentially have learned something, too.””
He also said that the fighter jets were nothing new as they were added to the NORAD Santa Tracker in the 60’s. He also smiled as he pointed out that the fighter jets in the NORAD Santa Tracker are unarmed.
The NORAD Santa Tracker generates more than 100,000 calls to NORAD asking about Santa and the program has more than 1.2 million Facebook followers and 129,000 Twitter connections.
Click Here to use the NORAD Santa Tracker