‘Yes, Virginia’ column is a classic

 “Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus,” was written in 1897 by Francis P. Church, the editor of the now-defunct New York Sun.  He wrote it in response to this letter:

“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

            “Dear Virginia:  Your little friends are wrong.  They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age.  They do not believe except what 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 all little.

            “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 child-like faith then, no poetry, and no romance to make tolerable this existence.  We should have no enjoyment, except sense and sight.  The external light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

            “No Santa Claus?  Thank God he lives, and lives forever.  A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay 10 years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.”

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