Archive | November 18, 2013

Protest against Dutch holiday tradition that has Santa’s helpers resemble slaves

“Protest against Dutch holiday tradition that has Santa’s helpers resemble slaves”

Global News

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands – The Dutch equivalent of Santa Claus arrived in the Netherlands on Saturday to the delight of thousands of children. But even as the Sinterklaas festival kicked off around the country a group gathered in downtown Amsterdam to protest one element of the party they see as unwelcome: his assistant in blackface makeup, Black Pete.

In the Dutch holiday tradition, St. Nicholas arrives by steamboat in mid-November and spends a month in the country with dozens of the Petes, who are clown-like figures that leave cookies, chocolate and other treats for children. The whole affair culminates in a night of gift giving on Dec. 5.

Protesters say the Petes – who wear blackface makeup, red lipstick and frizzy “Afro” wigs – are blatant racist caricatures and should be banned. But the large majority of Dutch people feel there is no racial insult intended by Black Pete. They say…

View original post 331 more words