Toys R Us Pulls Breaking Bad Action Figures

Toys R Us Pulls Breaking Bad Action Figures

Christmas gets blamed for a lot of stuff. But this is a new one.
Toys R Us sells more at Christmas than any other time of the year. Every fall they get new merchandise they think will sell during the season. This year they got action figures based on the hit show Breaking Bad. The problem? A character in the show is a drug dealer, he has an action figure and he’s accessorized with guns, a bag of cash and some of his signature mix of meth. One reader of Defend Christmas made the giant leap that Christmas is now responsible for glamorizing drug use to children.

Well, everybody can relax now. Toy R Us pulled the toy and Christmas is now, once again, safe for kids.

The whole hubbub began by parents protesting via a online petition for Toys R Us to remove the ill-conceived toy. (Believe it or not, the toy industry makes this kind of mistake all the time). After more than 8000 signatures Toys R Us got the hint.

At first, Toys R Us claimed that the dolls were in the adult action figure section of the store, and would only be sold to children ages 15 and older.

Apparently, there are adults who buy action figures. Apparently, 15 year olds are adults. But then, looking at a potential loss of sales, Toys R Us caved and took the figures off the shelf entirely.

Those who disagree with this Florida Mom can still buy the figures on Amazon and other online sites not affiliated with Toys R Us. So people can still buy their drug dolls and blame Christmas for it.

43 Year Old Christmas Tree Comes Down in South Korea

43 Year Old Christmas Tree Comes Down in South Korea

We forget in the heat of the rhetorical battles of the so-called War on Christmas that Christmas is sometimes used in places where real guns and bullets matter. This week a 43-year old symbol of Christmas and war was removed: South Korean marines have dismantled a 43-year-old Christmas tower on the border with North Korea that the North had threatened at one time to attack with artillery.

North Korea, you see, hates Christmas, religion, and, yes, South Korea.

This wasn’t your usual jolly Christmas tree. Erected on a front-line hilltop northwest of Seoul in 1971, the 59-foot steel tower, tipped with a cross, used to be illuminated with cascades of light bulbs around Christmas during the Cold War years.

Batteries of loudspeakers sent Christmas carols drifting across the snow-capped border into the North, where the totalitarian regime repressed religious freedom.

It was part of a psychological warfare the two Koreas had continued to wage along the 155-mile border even after their three-year Korean War ended with a truce in 1953. Both sides carved their border hills with large slogans exhorting troops from the other side to defect to the capitalist South “for freedom” and to the “people’s paradise” of the communist North. They also sent radio broadcasts and balloons carrying propaganda leaflets into each other’s sky.

North Korea has repeatedly demanded the destruction of the high steel tower on top of a military-controlled hill just three kilometers from the heavily-fortified border.

In the past, it has even threatened to shell the tower which the South has allowed civilian groups to decorate with lights — including a giant illuminated cross at the top — over the Christmas season.

The defence ministry said it was dismantled for the sole reason that the 43-year-old structure had become unsafe.

“The decision was unrelated to inter-Korean relations. Safety was the main reason,” a ministry spokesman told AFP, adding that work to remove the tower had begun back in August.

“There is no plan to replace it with a new one,” he said.

The South switched off the tree under a 2004 deal to halt official-level cross-border propaganda. It also suspended loudspeaker broadcasts and a propaganda leaflet campaign using large helium balloons.

The deal was scrapped in 2010 following the sinking of a South Korean warship which Seoul blamed on a North Korean submarine.

In 2011 the tower was not illuminated in the wake of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il’s death and it stayed dark over Christmas 2013 when military tensions were running high.

The North has always condemned the Christmas lights show as a provocative display of psychological warfare.

Headline News Joins the Christmas Creep Parade Two Months Late

Headline News Joins the Christmas Creep Parade Two Months Late

Headline News — what used to be part of Turner Broadcasting known for 24-hour non-stop news — seems to be in a bit of a rut. The news channel is still obsessed with the long ago convicted Jodi Arias and now they are jumping on the Christmas creep bandwagon.

Yup, on October 20th, is OUTRAGED to see Christmas BEFORE HALLOWEEN and they mean it, doggone it, BECAUSE THEY USE ALL CAPS TO TALK ABOUT IT:

One of these things is not like the others: Pumpkin carving, apple picking, CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS. In what can only be described as a seasonal scandal, Christmas-themed items have already started appearing in stores.

In case you have forgotten, it’s only October… as in, there’s still Halloween and Thanksgiving to get through first. Although some people are outraged by the very early Christmas cheer, other shoppers were overjoyed.

Would someone please advise they are two months late to this party?

Christmas creep, officially, peaks as breaking news in August and September.

They need to move on to complaining about Black Friday killing Thanksgiving already.

Can Cameron get it right to Save Christmas?

Can Cameron get it right to Save Christmas?

Just as Kirk Cameron’s Christmas movie project Saving Christmas needed another push of media its website was somehow hacked again by “Islamic terrorists”. We’re not saying it isn’t true. We just think it is curious.

Saving Christmas is supposed to be a Christian response to atheists and anti-Christmas detractors who continually harp on Christmas. And Cameron is pushing hard to promote the “us versus them” angle of his movie. The Turkish website hackers appear to possess incredible timing in helping Cameron make this point.

“We have expected opposition to the message of ‘Saving Christmas‘ from the beginning,” said an executive for Provident Films, Mediaite reported. “But we had no idea it would come from the other side of the world. This incident only heightens our resolve to help this important message get out.”

The Saving Christmas website was taken over by Ayyildiz Tim International Force, a group that has also hacked pages run by the United Nations. The site was reportedly replaced with a banner image of a man in armor—believed to be the Muslim sultan Saladin, who fought Christian crusaders in 788 to 793 B.C. (Before Cameron)—along with Turkish text reading, “The Turkish spirit will shine again and the use of weapons will emerge in the nation’s history as this hero will shine again.”

After hearing “music and a loud gunshot,” visitors were automatically redirected to the Ayyildiz Tim Twitter page, where the group regularly brags of all the other, equally important enemies of Islam it’s waged its holy hacker war upon. Oddly enough, the Ayyildiz Tim Twitter account doesn’t actually boast about hacking Cameron’s website itself—and in fact, it only retweets The Blaze’s story about the hacking.

“Coincidence?” Cameron asks. “Or does it actually prove the title of the movie? Will you and your family join me and my family this year in putting ‘Christ’ back in Christmas?”

Cameron is promoting his movie to Christian websites, Christian publications and Christian groups to sell tickets to Christians during a limited two-week run of the movie in November.

He claims the movie puts Christ back in Christmas.

Will it?

In media interviews Cameron claims there is religious significance to all the elements of the season — from mistletoe to Santa Claus — because they all celebrate Christ. Yet, at the same time, movie previews appear to belittle the use of the phrase “happy holidays”, which of course is derived from the term “happy holy days”.

Can Cameron rise above it all or will he only continue to divide Christmas and Christians?

We haven’t seen the movie. But we would be surprised if Cameron included the following in his production:

1. Christmas existed and was celebrated before Christ. (Tell the story of Isaiah, Kirk!)
2. Christmas embraces elements of pagan worship that were adopted later as Christian symbols. (Truth is truth).
3. Christmas has evolved over time to morph into both a sacred and secular observance. (And that’s ok).

Ultimately, this “war” on Christmas is never ending because the extremes — and Kirk Cameron is an extreme in this conversation — will only argue with other extremes. Both push agendas that extend far beyond Christmas and the celebration of a holiday.

In the end, we declare, with the movie yet unseen, Saving Christmas is nothing more than propaganda for one side.

And it won’t help or solve anything.

Black Pete Makeover Plans Announced

Black Pete Makeover Plans Announced

The Dutch tradition of Black Pete begins its transformation this year with Santa being accompanied by a whole lot of Petes not colored black. There will be yellow Petes, white Petes and Petes with faces streaked with soot.

In Gouda, where Saint Nicholas and dozens of Petes will ‘arrive’ on November 15 with a gift-filled boat from Spain in a national event broadcast live on television, the mayor on Tuesday decided to introduce some new colours. Besides a number of Black Petes, there will also be ‘Cheese Petes’ with yellow faces and ‘Stroopwafel Petes’ with striped, light brown faces resembling the traditional Dutch syrup biscuit of the same name. ‘There is no simple way to find a solution that everyone can identify with,’ said Gouda Mayor Milo Schoenmaker.
Gouda’s Black Petes ‘changed several years ago to dark brown without stereotypical big red lips and earrings,’ the city hall added.

Some in the media are covering this story “after years of debate” in charging the tradition with racist undertones.

Here’s the truth: for nearly 200 years the Dutch have had the holiday tradition of Sinter Klaas and Black Pete, a whimsical character of debatable origin. Pete is usually portrayed by with black faces, big red lips and curly afro hair. It was only last year that the caricature was charged as racist, which was fueled by International commentary from a U.N. observer. The issue went to court and the court declared that, yes, Black Pete is indeed racist.

Amsterdam’s mayor and a council of festival organizers met to discuss a makeover for Black Pete, which led to a counter protest from traditionalists who claim this whole thing is just political correctness run amok.

With the date for the festival fast approaching on November 15th, and the culminating events later planned near St. Nicholas day, you can bet this story will continue to be in the news for weeks to come.