A Chicago news anchor is learning that you mess with the Santa story at your peril.
After a report on the trend of Santas this year being coached to manage little ones' gift expectations, anchor Robin Robinson quipped that Santa wasn't real, anyway.
Ms. Robinson said to her co-host on the Fox show The Talker: "Stop trying to convince your kids that Santa is Santa. ... That's why they have these high expectations. They know you can't afford it, so what do they do? Just ask some man in a red suit. There is no Santa."
Viewers flooded the show's feedback lines and Facebook page with outrage.
"I find it appalling. My son was watching, as we do almost every night," a man named David wrote. One woman said Ms. Robinson was simply "in trouble."
Cue the inevitable apology.
"It was careless and callous to say ... what I said, in what could've been mixed company," Ms. Robinson said. "So many kids don't get to be children, that for those who do get to live the wonder and magic of Christmas, I would never spoil it intentionally. So I sincerely apologize."
It's only early on in the season, but expect the Santa wars to pick up as December 25 approaches. A teacher in New York state is already busy calling parents of her Grade 2 students to apologize for telling the kids that it is their parents, not Santa, who puts gifts under the tree.
Was an apology in order? Or are people overreacting?