The covenant

I think Trump’s sudden lurch into rational skepticism at a socially inappropriate moment is hilarious, but I’m not going to pretend the whole “don’t tell the kids Santa is a story” routine makes any sense.

What’s the point of telling one’s children a lie that you know they’ll find out is a lie long before they’re out of childhood? Why not just tell them it’s a story? Adults don’t tell children pumpkins are the personified Spirit of Halloween, so what’s with all the “Shh shh don’t spill the beans” silliness? Apart from anything else I don’t see why parents would want to give their children reason to think Mommy and Daddy make a habit of lying to them.

Like so:

Hey, kids under 8 years old, thanks for reading The New York Times. But this time, please don’t. Maybe go play Minecraft or something instead.

… O.K., are they gone now? Cool. Here’s what President Trump said to a child about Santa Claus on Monday.

Jokey [as if kids under 8 read the Times!] but still referring to a real taboo. What Trump did is hilarious because of the taboo.

Sadly, we do not know how the 7-year-old, named Coleman, responded to the president of the United States’ suggestion that his parents had been lying to him all his life and that he would probably get wise to it soon. The president made the comments from the White House while he and the first lady, Melania Trump, fielded calls from a hotline for children wondering where Santa was.

Mr. Trump’s faux pas was roundly mocked on social media, where he was criticized for breaking the covenant in which we have all agreed to deceive our children.

Exactly; why has everyone agreed to do that? It’s kind of a bully move, and I remember being annoyed about it when I was a child.

I’m with Katha on this.

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