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Saturday, November 17, 2007

 
War On Speech, Santas Down Under Edition

Sully links this post by Obsidian Wings:

"Santas in Australia's largest city have been told not to use Father Christmas's traditional "ho ho ho" greeting because it may be offensive to women, it was reported Thursday.

Sydney's Santa Clauses have instead been instructed to say "ha ha ha" instead, the Daily Telegraph reported.

If Santa were wearing a lime-green leisure suit, matching wide-brimmed hat, and five pounds of gold jewelery, they might have a point.

As if the silliness of this weren't self-evident...imagine if some outfit had, out of "sensitivity" concerns, petitioned publishers to refrain from hyphenating certain words between the second and third syllables for purposes of line justification. Like this:

Jason missed the bus, but arrived at school
in time for Professor Montgomery's demon-
stration of the Laws of Thermodynamics.

So far, nobody who finds demons offensive (Christians and Muslims being two notable examples) has yet to complain about this printing practice. It's obvious to sane people that "demon-strate" connotes nothing about evil spirits - just as "ho ho ho" is just a laugh and not a recitation of a bachelor party guest list.

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