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Ho Ho Hold on There, Pardner!

A painting of Santa Claus on a plywood sheet at Tracy’s Christmas Tree Lot in Turlock, Calif., has brought a complaint from a shopper: it depicts Santa in a cowboy hat and a gun belt. The company has used it every Christmas for 20 years. “Santa is made for love, bringing families together,” complained Monica Sliva, “not carrying weapons.” Lot owner Bobby Vierra shrugged it off. “You know, it’s just a cowboy. We’re just trying to sell trees out here.” But Sliva says the decoration “portrays to the kids that it’s OK for Santa to be carrying a gun and therefore it’s OK for them to be carrying a gun.” (RC/KCRA Sacramento) ...Well maybe — if the kids are Santa Claus.
Original Publication Date: 19 December 2010
This story is in True’s book collections, in Volume 17.

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