Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Overheard on CNN.com: Santa secrets


COMMENT OF THE DAY: Well, Santa's coming to my house and you non-believers are on your own. Merry Christmas! --sezvou

Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus! At least, that’s what most CNN.com readers said in response to a story on children discovering that Santa is really just dad dressed in a red suit and cheap fake beard. Many said it’s more about what Santa symbolizes—generosity and caring—than whether he actually exists. But, as with most stories, there were a few “Bah, humbugs.” Check reader reaction to this and other stories on CNN.com:

Santa truth: Your kid may already know

Several readers shared their own memories of discovering that Santa isn’t real, but choosing to continue to believe in him in their own ways. newsmongrel said, “I'm in my 20s and my mom still puts ‘from Santa’ on a few boxes. It's all about the magic of the season!” Davd shared this: “My 11-year-old is going through a mental battle over the big guy. She swears up and down that she saw him once years ago in our living room. But her rational mind is questioning all the inconsistencies. It's actually beautiful to watch her try to work it out on her own. Santa is real to all you haters out there, but not the way you think.”

BongoBoyLA took a measured approach with breaking the news to the kids. “Several years ago, my kids figured out what was going on and we had a chat about it. I told them about the historical St. Nicholas and how the current Santa character is a symbol for charity and selflessness (two great character traits for the modern kid to dwell on). We still carry on the Santa traditions with a bit of a wink and have tons of fun, even though they're 8 & 10 now.” hobbes13 said the Santa tradition is more for parents than children. “My little one told me she knows the truth this year, and while she's excited for entering the realm of 'Big Girls,’ I'm depressed for pretty much the same reasons.”

ksgf said, “I agree that ‘Santa’ represents the season, the feeling of being kind to others. I find Santa encourages a lot more kindness than God does. I am almost 30 years old and I will always believe in Santa Claus.” But realtalker was one of the few who came down square on the other side of the argument. “By telling kids there IS a Santa you are starting your relationship out with a lie. We tell our kids from birth that there is Santa and they believe it based on what we tell them. Now I know that in the grand scheme it isn't that heartbreaking to the kid to learn the truth and they don't feel deceived, but does that make it right to lie to them their whole life.”

Jets suspend, fine coach who tripped player

Sports fans responded passionately to the story about Sal Alosi, the New York Jets strength and conditioning coach who was fined $25,000 and suspended through the 2010 playoffs for tripping a Miami Dolphins player. Most thought the punishment wasn’t harsh enough. But while nobody condoned Alosi’s actions, some thought his apology was sincere and that he should be given a second chance.

Callaban007 said, “He should have been fired. Coaches are supposed to set the example, not be part of the problem.”  march7752 said, “A bully would do the same thing. He should be fired. A fine and suspension? Opens the door for more actions like this until someone gets disabled, perhaps a (highly-paid) star? Then the punishment would be harsher. Inexcusable.”

MollyBee was concerned about the type of example Alosi’s behavior set. “Bad, ugly behavior is nothing new in the sports world ... much of it excused. How can we expect our children to grow into honorable adults when we ourselves accept bad behavior occurs as part of the game?” And Uncledrinky took issue with Alosi’s explanation that he “wasn’t thinking.” “No Sal ... you were thinking ... just thinking of something stupid ... and once you thought of it ... you did it.”

But treehuger thought the fine and suspension were appropriate. “He who is without sin, cast the first stone. When's the last time any of us got fined $25,000 for tripping somebody? He admitted his fault in the matter, accepts his punishment and still may have a lot to offer to his friends and peers.” thelittleun thought the transgression was minor compared to the other hazards of football. “How anybody can go bananas about a simple trip with what you see on the field in every game just beggars belief.”

The whole matter made swordspider question his dedication to the game. “Dude, he tripped a guy, he didn't smash him over the head with a bat … this is just a sideline helper, so let's slam him. What a joke. The whole darn sport is a joke now and I used to love football.”

‘King’s Speech’ scores seven Golden Globe nominations

The nominations for the TV and film awards show were announced this morning, and many readers took issue with what they saw as undeserved nominations or films they thought got slighted.

meggyb said, “I am mystified as to why ‘Glee’ continues to be nominated for Golden Globe awards. Every other comedy and comedic actor (well, except maybe ‘Big Bang Theory’ nominations) blows ‘Glee’ and its concentrated mediocrity right out of the water. Borkity said, “And where is ‘Community’?! That show is getting the shaft so hard. I'd also like to see ‘United States of Tara.’ ” And hockensmith2 said, “How do ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ ‘Red,’ ‘Burlesque,’ ‘The Tourist’ and ‘The Kids are All Right’ get Best Comedy nominations over ‘Toy Story 3’?

Some pulled for their favorites. MedianN said, “’Inception’ for the win!” while Insipid said, “’Inception’ was good, but both ‘The Social Network’ and ‘Black Swan’ were better -- I'm hoping one of them gets Best Picture/Drama.”

World leaders mourn Holbrooke’s death

U.S. diplomat Richard Holbrooke’s death prompted several readers to share their gratitude for his work.

No9 said, “A loss for our nation. A quiet statesman and faithful public servant. He will be missed.” And SDPattycat said, “This is so sad … he was only a man, not a miracle worker, but it sure sounds like he gave a lot of dedicated effort to help spread peace on earth, for many of the right reasons, not just 'American' reasons.”

YOUR TURN: Now that you've read what other people are saying, do you find that your views align with theirs? Think of this as a wishing well in need of your 2 cents. Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

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