[Nfbc-info] OT, unless you consider the timing: Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.

Michael Hingson info at michaelhingson.com
Wed Dec 25 01:07:17 UTC 2013

We take pleasure in answering at once and thus prominently the communication
below, expressing at the same time our great gratification that its faithful
author is numbered among the friends of The Sun: 

Dear Editor, I am 8 years old.
Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. 
Papa says "If you see it in The Sun it's so."
Please tell me the truth. Is there a Santa Claus?
         Virginia O'Hanlon
         115 West Ninety-fifth St.

VIRGINIA, Your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the
skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They
think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds.
All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In
this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect,
as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the
intelligence of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge 

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and
generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to
your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if
there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no
Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to
make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense
and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies!
You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on
Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus
coming down what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus but that is no
sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are
those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies
dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not
there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and
unseeable in the world. 

You tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but
there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, not
even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could
tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that
curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all
real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years
from now, Virginia, nay ten times ten thousand years from now, he will
continue to make glad the heart of childhood. 

   -- Editorial page of the New York Sun, September 21, 1897

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