AUNT JOHN SEZ: Hey kids, with relatively few shoplifting days left until X-Mas, your Unkle Lancifer and I are off today looking for some last-minute steals. Thankfully, Kinderpal Mickster was kind enough to pass along this essay she received from Sam Snowman, narrator of the RANKIN & BASS classic RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER. Take it away Sam:
It has come to my attention that the North Pole has become a hotbed for intolerance over the years. I believe that I have pinpointed the source of this lack of understanding. Santa Claus himself appears to be the catalyst for the effects plaguing this area. Santa, by his example, has made clear that individuals considered "misfits" should be taunted and bullied. Let us look at the list of offenders.
Donner is the first to notice that there is something different about his son, Rudolph. Immediately, he panics because he knows Santa will not tolerate such differences. This is soon confirmed when Santa comes by to congratulate the couple on the birth of their son. When Santa sees the red nose, he warns Donner that Rudolph won't be able to pull his sleigh in the future, if his nose remains red. Donner, regardless of his wife's objections, decides to hide Rudolph's nonconformity so that others will accept him.
The Head Elf has obviously been trained well by Santa to squash nonconformists like bugs. His borderline violent reaction to Hermey's dream to be a dentist drives that point home. How dare Hermey want to do anything other than toy making?
Comet and the other reindeer start making fun of Rudolph the moment his red nose is revealed thus revealing that they too have been infected by the trickle down effects of prejudice.
An unidentified person obviously banished the misfit toys to the island ruled by King Moonracer. Though I can't be certain, I speculate that Santa was involved. Of course, he would not want the world to think he produces misfit toys. The only way to make the problem disappear would be to get rid of those toys.
Discrimination against females is also a huge problem in the North Pole. Santa belittles Mrs. Claus at every opportunity, and Donner totally disregards his wife's opinions on the subject of child rearing. When it comes time to search for Rudolph, Donner is quick to tell Mrs. Donner that this is, "Man's work."
With all these examples of intolerance, I want to assure you that there are a few individuals with accepting hearts:
- Mrs. Donner wants to do right by her son, but she allows her husband to make all the decisions
- Clarice accepts Rudolph and even finds his difference attractive. She risks punishment from her father to help Rudolph
- Yukon Cornelius calls Hermey and Rudolph misfits, but does decide to help them in spite of their differences
- King Moonracer allows the misfit toys to inhabit his island. He tells Rudolph that he cannot hide from his problems. He also requests that Rudolph speak on the behalf of the misfit toys when he returns to Christmas Town
In the end, it took the misfits' rescue of Donner, Mrs. Donner, and Clarice for individuals to admit their prejudices. Donner apologized to his son, the head elf agreed to let Hermey open a dentist office, Santa asked Rudolph to pull his sleigh, and Santa agreed to pick up the misfit toys.
Unfortunately, a tall, bespectacled elf that wishes to remain anonymous shared his opinion with me, "You can't teach an old elf new tricks. Santa is still an intolerant douche bag. He only agreed to have Rudolph pull his sleigh because of the great blizzard, not because he accepts him." He went on to add this chilling detail, "There is proof that Santa dumped the misfit toys over Siberia with nothing but an umbrella to cushion their fall."