The Instigator
Beverlee
Pro (for)
Winning
39 Points
The Contender
devin.cooper64
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Is Santa Claus Real?

Do you like this debate?NoYes+1
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
Beverlee
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/6/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,605 times Debate No: 41803
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (15)
Votes (6)

 

Beverlee

Pro


http://www.debate.org...

Each year, millions of moms and dads are confronted with the dreaded question: Is there a Santa Claus? Is all this real? Or is it all just pretend? And for generations, parents have used this unique moment of decision as a preperatory course in how they will answer the much more challenging questions that will come later, as puberty, broken hearts and first cars begin to replace the magic and fantasy of childhood.

This question offers moms and dads a wonderful opportunity to teach their children a lesson that can brighten their little worlds for a lifetime, without creating a dissapointing confrontation with cold reality. This magical opportunity can happen when parents themselves understand that Santa Claus is far from make believe; that the jolly old elf is very real. The second you really believe, you will see him as he actually exists... real, actual, and amazing.

In this debate, I will argue the case FOR the real existence of Santa Claus. I will explain how the miracle of Christmas is possible, and why moms and dads should never, ever have to tell their kids that "there is no such thing" as Old Saint Nick ever again.

devin.cooper64

Con

Ok, ill join, this seems like an intresting debate and topic, especially from the way you presented your introductory.

Sorry for no fancy or cool acceptence speech, for im honestly more intrested in how you are presenting your arguments.

I look forward to it.
Debate Round No. 1
Beverlee

Pro

http://www.debate.org...


If we could pull back the curtain on Santa Claus, the "right jolly old elf" that has captivated billions of people for generations, what would we see? What is the secret of Santa Claus? What does he really look like? Is he even human? Or is the popular image simply a symbolic representation for something much larger, much more complex, and much more important for us to understand?

The Real Santa
Santa Claus is a centuries old tradition that has deep cultural and literary roots. It is centered on the mythical figure of "Santa Claus" as a legendary figure with vast supernatural powers and abilities. The real secret of Santa Claus, however, is even more magical and wondrous than most people realize, and should be celebrated in it's own right.

Some may argue that Santa is not real at all... because he does not look like the imagery - a heavyset, wizened man in a red parka flying around on a reindeer sled. The fact still remains that this image is not what Santa really is... a social phenomenon that has few parallels in all of human history. To suggest that this phenomenon, this global partnership between so many millions of people, is not "real" is as strange as suggesting that my debate partner is not "real" because he is not really an adorable animated figure with a hat. The Big Guy is just a storefront for a far more gargantuan operation, a mascot.

I am going to try and explain why this real truth about Santa is just as magical, and just as amazing, as the mythical figure would be if he were not imaginary. Grown-ups really shouldn't tell their kids that it's all imaginary and fake - because it's not... it's a real and important part of our traditions and culture that we need to recognize and allow to amaze us.


Santa Claus is a valuable and sentimental tradition, a key literary figure, and a cultural entity, not unlike a corporate entity. These things more than show that the various interactions known collectively and individually as "Santa Claus" are real, and fill an important role in the biographies of our children’s lives. In the next round, I will explain why it does not diminish whatsoever the magic and wonder of Santa Claus that millions upon millions of people around the world have kept this tradition alive for centuries. Far from being a childhood let-down, this fact can help to teach children the lesson of togetherness, parental love and the enduring allure of childhood.

The Santa Claus legends, traditions, stories and interactions are very real, and are very important to millions of people around the world.

Santa is a real entity that touches millions

From Wikipedia:

An entity is something that exists by itself, although it need not be of material existence. In particular, abstractions and legal fictions are usually regarded as entities. In general, there is also no presumption that an entity is animate.

In business, an entity is a person, department, team, corporation, cooperative, partnership, or other group with whom it is possible to conduct business.

Sometimes, the word entity is used in a general sense of a being, whether or not the referent has material existence, e.g., is often referred to as an entity with no corporeal form (nonphysical entity), such as a language. It is also often used to refer to ghosts and and other spirits.


Santa Claus is just as real as any other incorporated entity, such as cities and towns, corporations and other legal and cultural partnerships. In the case of Jolly old Saint Nick, the partnerships involved are so vast that they easily dwarf even the most massive corporate giants, involving literally billions of people around the world. In every western nation, the majority of adults work together during the holiday season, keeping the secret of Santa Claus alive and dutifully fulfilling its promise to millions of expectant children.

The extent of this cooperation is beyond extraordinary; it has become an economic necessity. Global economic structures require the sudden, once a year boost in sales of wrapping paper, gifts, Christmas trees, decorations, toys and electronics that the Santa tradition brings.


http://www.debate.org...

It is no accident that children go to meet Santa at shopping centers and malls. The commercial frenzy that Santa brings each year can be described as “reverse gifting,” that benefit not only the eager children on Christmas morning, but also the millions of retailers, shopkeepers, manufacturers and shippers who thrive on the tradition. Even if we want to tell the children that all of this is fantasy, and not to be taken seriously past a certain age, the markets will still believe in Santa.


Santa is a cherised cultural and literary figure
If we could travel back in time, and meet the real, historical Saint Nicholas, we might not recognize the man for the arch-celebrity that he would one day become. Born in March of 270 as Nikolaos of Myra, in Greece, Nick stood between 4'11" and 5' tall, and had a prominent facial injury by the time of his death, which had disfigured his nose. He lived most of his life in Eastern Europe and Russia, eventually becoming a highly respected and loved figure in the region. He died on December 6th, 343 at the age of 73.


An important legend of Nicholas tells the story of how he would leave gifts of gold to young girls at night, sometimes tossing the little purses down the chimney, where the coins would sometimes get caught in stockings hung out to dry.

Saint Nicholas is entombed at the Basilica of Saint Nicholas in Bari, Italy. Excavated for repair work to his burial chamber, Nicholas's skull was carefully recorded in minute detail by forensic investigators, who later created an ultra-lifelike 3d Computer Aided Draft image of what his face looked like when he was alive. The Results are breathtaking: the real face of the historical Saint Nick, as we might have met him in life.

http://www.debate.org...



The literary and cultural traditions that brought us to the modern vision of Santa Claus is also fascinating.

Following the life of Saint Nick in Russia, the tales of another Yuletide personage were popular in North Western Europe, where Odinism was still the prevalent religion. Odin, or Wotan, would fly accross the sky at night on his magical horse Sleipnir, tossing gifts to his loyal supporters below. These traditions later became important elements to the Santa Claus story.

http://www.debate.org...

(Above) Ancient artwork depicting the god Odin flying accross the sky on his horse Sliepnier, tossing gifts to his followers from the clouds. (Below) A drawing of Odin from 1886.
http://www.debate.org...

This is an image of "Father Christmas," (Left) an early variant of Santa Claus, riding a goat like the storm god Thor. (Shown on the Right) Thor was pulled along on a small cart by a pair of such goats. After the transition to Santa Claus, this imagery changed, with the cart becoming a reindeer-drawn sled. [2]

http://www.debate.org...

http://www.debate.org...

Santa Claus came closer to the figure that we recognize today after a pair pf poems were published in the 1820's, the most famous of which became known as "The Night Before Christmas."

http://www.debate.org...


Santa returned to his traditional red, green and white outfit throughout the rest of the 1800's and in the 1930's, the Coca-Cola Company began using Santa Claus as advertising. Coca-Cola played up the colors of Santa as compared to a bottle of their drink, black, red and white... with a jolly, bulging middle.

http://www.debate.org...




Santa Claus is an important cultural tradition

Far from "not existing," the ongoing survival of Santa Claus is due in part to the fact that parents are so nearly universal in their willingness to pass this tradition down to future generations. Children can benefit enormously from seeing all the millions of parents that can work together in such a great conspiracy to fill the holidays with mystery, magic and gifts for their children.

So Santa is a real tradition, a real literary figure and an actual, real socially incorporated entity. Does this mean that the big guy is not important, or that he can be easily dismissed as "make believe?" Not at all.


[1] http://www.stnicholascenter.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...

devin.cooper64

Con

devin.cooper64 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Beverlee

Pro


http://www.debate.org...

In this round, I will explain how our understanding of the actual nature of Santa Claus helps us to understand how it is easily possible for Santa to accomplish seemingly impossible feats, such as passing out gifts to girls and boys worldwide in a single night.

Santa Claus is a vital player in the myths and rituals that surround the Christmas holiday. During the yuletide season he is a staple of television and radio, print and film/ He is out on the streets, meeting his adoring public, overseeing parades, and working as pitchman for a variety of goods and services. Christmas would not be Christmas without Saint Nick.

http://www.debate.org...

(Santa, working the crowd.)

The common core of the Santa myth is instantly grasped by children, and widely propagated by adults. This myth, like any other, inspires a range of reactions in the public. Children often simply accept the myth as literal fact, taken at face value. The absurdism of the legends mix easily into the child's world, already largely unexplored and mysterious. Others may reject the myth as a "lie" and expose it for a grand deception. However, the most common scenario occurs when people understand the myth for what it is, yet play along with it.

This is how the unique phenomenon that makes up the Santa Claus social system survives within a cultural ecosystem that has grown increasingly intolerant of myths of any kind, even religious ones. What makes so many masses of rational adults sincerely fulfil their designated responsibilities as Christmas elves for Santa, most of the time never stopping to marvel at the wondrous interrelatedness of it all?

Each year at Christmas time, the ubiquitousness of the Santa Myth is reintroduced, reinforced, marketed and disseminated out to society, thus becoming an irresistible psychological contagion. The millions of people “infected” by the Santa concept then mix the myths with role-specific behavior that is reinforced again by social mores that also interact with the larger Christmas season. The result is a crowd psychosis that explodes into the corporatized “personhood” of Santa Claus. Participants experience deindividuation as they vanish into the larger social system, becoming “roles” instead of individual persons as they relate to their participation in the myth.

Participants in the Santa Claus legend then assume their new identities as members of the Santa Claus social system, thus creating that year’s “Santa Claus” out of their Borg-like cooperation. Essentially, moms and dads are coopted into the larger phenomenon of “Santa Claus” in a manner that is directly analogous to Christmas Elves.

http://www.debate.org...

(Christmas Magic, and a little bit of terror.)

devin.cooper64

Con

devin.cooper64 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Beverlee

Pro

In closing, I just wanted to underscore the moral of the story:

If we tell kids that none of this is real, that none of it matters, we will be doing them a disservice. This tradition is very real, and is important to maintain.
devin.cooper64

Con

devin.cooper64 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by cybertron1998 3 years ago
cybertron1998
The only known "immortal" organism is type of lobster
Posted by Beverlee 3 years ago
Beverlee
Haha I'm not all upset or anything! =)

It's cool to say it like that, because you made me do a shimmy, lol...
Posted by devin.cooper64 3 years ago
devin.cooper64
I might actually just give this to you, this is something way too good, way beyond my league especially ._.

sorry for a disappointment
Posted by Beverlee 3 years ago
Beverlee
=) it's cool! I haven't write out the last part yet anyway.
Posted by devin.cooper64 3 years ago
devin.cooper64
Sorry for no response last round, had other issues arrive and couldnt go on here, I will post an argument and possibly rebuttal for this round

Pinkie Promise.
Posted by Beverlee 3 years ago
Beverlee
What an awesome compliment! Thank you!
Posted by devin.cooper64 3 years ago
devin.cooper64
I dont even know where to begin on picking this apart
*claps*
good job.
Posted by Cermank 3 years ago
Cermank
Lol my dad tried to convince me that Santa Claus was real well into my teens. Although I caught on when I was 8/9- ish. This should be interesting.
Posted by Beverlee 3 years ago
Beverlee
I hope it doesn't suck... I'm doing a thing on Santa Claus, Dracula and King Arthur with someone. It's Christmas, so this is the Santa Claus part.

I already know the formatting is screwed. The way it looked when I hit "Submit your argument" was way different than the way it looks now. :-/
Posted by devin.cooper64 3 years ago
devin.cooper64
Holy mother of words, I was not expecting you to go full out like that...
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by GarretKadeDupre 3 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
Beverleedevin.cooper64Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Wow that was educational as well as entertaining to read. I particularly liked your arguments on what it means to exist as an entity, as well as the CGI constructed face of Santa. Too bad Con forfeited. Happens way too often on this site.
Vote Placed by SeventhProfessor 3 years ago
SeventhProfessor
Beverleedevin.cooper64Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 years ago
Ragnar
Beverleedevin.cooper64Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Hard to argue with photographic evidence... Still funny that Fox news claims he and Jesus are white (I wonder if the same applies to Saddam). Oh conduct for forfeits, sources for photographs and links.
Vote Placed by Matt_L 3 years ago
Matt_L
Beverleedevin.cooper64Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision:
Vote Placed by iamanatheistandthisiswhy 3 years ago
iamanatheistandthisiswhy
Beverleedevin.cooper64Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro wins the debate due to the full forfeit by Con. I would have like to seen some arguments against Santa, as personally I think the whole idea of imaginary friends can be dangerous just look at religion and what it does.
Vote Placed by Ore_Ele 3 years ago
Ore_Ele
Beverleedevin.cooper64Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: FF and actual arguments and sources provided.