A teacher in New Mexico told an African-American student “Santa is white” and is now in some hot water because of it. The teacher then told the boy to remove his Santa Claus hat and beard because he could never look like the jolly old man from the North Pole.
Christopher Rougier, a ninth-grade student in Rio Rancho had dressed up as Santa Clause for a holiday party and was then told by his teacher that because of the color of his skin, he didn’t look like Santa and to remove the hat and beard. ABC News has reported that the teacher, who is not being identified, has been put on administrative leave as of Monday.
Christopher’s father told CNN that his son was “embarrassed” and that he now wants nothing to do with Christmas. The boy’s father did say that the teacher called his wife to apologize, but claims “it’s not enough.”
“He needs to be fired,” Rougier told KOAT. “For him to make a comment like that, there has to be at a minimum prejudice in him, and we don’t have room for that.”
Director of Rio Rancho Public Schools, Kim Vesely has released a statement about the incident:
“This situation involves a teacher recently hired by Cleveland High who made — and admits he made — a stupid mistake. The remark was inappropriate and should not have been made. The teacher feels very badly about what occurred. He self-reported the incident to the principal and has apologized to the student and to the student’s parent. Appropriate disciplinary action has been taken.”
This isn’t the first time someone has gotten into hot water for claiming that Santa is white. The Inquisitr recently reported an incident where Megyn Kelly, host of The Kelly File on Fox News channel, declared that Santa Claus and Jesus are both white men.
Allegations such as these have a tendency to cause all kinds of problems, including labeling the person as a racist. So, the question boils down to one thing, do we really need to label Santa Clause as any one race or nationality? Children around the world of all races and nationalities believe in jolly Saint Nick, so why bother causing such a ruckus?
[Image via Shutterstock/Africa Studio]