It’s not often Santa finds a lump of coal in his own stocking. But this poor Kris Kringle did.
“A Southeast Georgia Santa Claus will be looking for a new gig after the manager of the Mall at Waycross Shopping Center said the jolly one was wearing a Trump 2020 hat on duty Thursday,” First Coast News reported.
Mall manager James White told First Coast News on Friday that the retailer was unaware of Jolly Old St. Nicholas’ public display of his political leanings.
“We were not aware it happened,” White said about a picture posted on Facebook on Thursday and shared by hundreds of Georgians in the area. “It was done completely without our knowledge,” White added hours before Santa’s 4 p.m. Friday shift.
“It’s safe to say he will not be wearing this hat around here. This particular Santa has been replaced,” White said. He became aware of the photo circulating on social media when someone shared it with him Friday morning.
“Our kids are our focus and we put a lot of hard work into this,” White said. “We want children to believe in Santa for as long as they can and the spirit of giving.
The site said mall management quickly apologized when a customer shared the photo with them.
“We apologize for this occurrence and will be addressing this right away. The Mall at Waycross does not support any specific political party. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. Kindly, Mall Management.”
So yeah, Santa is now politicized.
Santa argues that he has some constitutional rights, the Right Scoop reports.
Skinner has since told his side of the story with a post on his Facebook explaining that it “really was an innocent thing. It really was.”
The mall Santa said that when he did it the place was closing and no children were around when he decided to switch hats and pose with the Trump hat.
Frank shared that he thinks someone saw the photo on his personal FB and notified the mall.
“I just felt like my constitutional rights were being taken away,” Skinner explained.
In [a] lengthy post on FB the longtime Santa shared that he never meant to “create a firestorm by doing that but simply intended to post the photo on my page for a little humor, as I have many friends and family who, like me, support our president.”
“I in no way meant to cause anyone discomfort,” he added. “At the time I thought it was harmless fun. Now I realize in this day and age that I should not have posted it. Obviously it did offend some folks. I can assure everyone that was not my intent. I have learned a lot from this. Going forward I will keep this in mind.”
So, yeah, 2019.