Santa Banned from Nursery After Muslims Complain

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Santa Claus was banned from visiting a children's nursery in St. Peter, Minn.

The St. Peter Head Start Program stopped Santa from coming to the nursery to deliver presents after a Somali Muslim family complained.

Families in the program are surveyed every year to gauge their feelings about the holidays.

"'We have Somali families in the program. We're respecting the wishes of families in the program. Part of our challenge in Head Start is providing an environment where young children from many different cultures can all feel comfortable," said Chris Marben, the regional coordinator for the Minnesota Valley Action Council.

Dennis Jackson, the man who plays Santa, told the Mankato Free Press he thinks parents who object could just take their kids out of class while Santa is there.

Jackson said he performed for other cultures in the past and there were never any problems. He said it is not fair for just a few people to make decisions for the rest.

"They're not respecting the majority," he said. "My feeling is can take their kids out of class for half an hour and let the other kids enjoy it. They should sacrifice, not rule."

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