Tuesday, December 24, 2019

SantaGate: Microsoft Removes Santa Hat Icon After a Single User Complained It Was 'Pushing Religion'

There was a huge dust-up in the IT community this week after Microsoft caved to a developer who complained about a festive Santa hat embedded in the code, saying the "religious" symbol was "offensive."

The drama played out on GitHub, the leading open-source code repository, which hosts Microsoft's open-source projects, including the popular developer tool VSCode.

Earlier this week, a user named Christian-Schiffer opened an "issue" on the platform complaining that someone at Microsoft had inserted an "Easter egg" into the code, displaying a Santa hat to users. "Santa Hat on vscode insiders and pushing of religion is very offensive to me," he wrote in the subject line.

"Additionally xmas has cost millions of Jews their lives over the centuries, yet even if that was not the case, pushing religious symbols as part of a product update is completely unacceptable," he went on to say. "Please remove it immediately and make it your top priority. To me this is almost equally offensive as a swastika."

Yeah, right. Exactly like a swastika. I mean, who doesn't remember the jackbooted Santas storming the Warsaw Ghetto?
Let's take a moment, shall we, to appreciate the irony, not to mention the cognitive dissonance and hubris, of a user with the name "Christian" complaining about a Santa hat as a "religious  symbol." (We'll get back to him in a moment.)

Christian-Schiffer included a screenshot of the itty bitty Santa hat that had offended his fragile sensibilities.

Yes, that's it. That microscopic little Santa hat is what has caused our Grinch so much consternation.

That should have been the end of it, but because it's 2019 and the snowflakes must never be made to cast their gaze upon anything they disagree with, Microsoft stepped in to save our hero.

Kai Maetzel, whose LinkedIn profile describes him as a "Partner Software Engineering Manager" for Microsoft, responded with: "@Christian-Schiffer we're sorry we hurt your and other's feelings. We'll remove the Santa Hat."

And that's just what Microsoft did. The company removed the Santa hat, which has nothing to do with the Christian holiday Christmas, to appease the developer whose heart is three sizes too small.

Mission accomplished. Christian-Schiffer was elated.

"Thank you Microsoft, I am very pleased with that decision," he wrote. "I understand many find this strange, therefor [sic] I would like to add an article about how offensive xmas is to many so you understand why." He linked to an article about the Jewish view of Christmas and went on to complain about people who "did not understand the offence, I am very surprised and in fact shocked about that." Poor dear.

Blowback over the decision came fast and hard, with developers in user forums blasting Microsoft for caving in to one lone complainer.

"Removing the Santa Hat on vscode insiders is very offensive to me," wrote LibraryFormid. "Getting offended by one person is against my atheist religion. Bowing before SJW's as part of a product update is completely unacceptable. Please readd [sic] it immediately and make it your top priority. To me this is almost equally offensive as censorship."

And there were more. Lots more. Here are just a few of the (unedited) comments, culled from the VSCode user forum and Reddit:

"Comparing my religion to nazi germany is incredibly hateful, and I don't think this is a story microsoft wants getting to the news."

"I mean.. at a certain point someone is just looking to be offended and will continue to be offended no matter how many times you capitulate."

"The funny thing is that santa hats barely have anything to do with modern religion. It's not like Santa is a biblical figure."

"His angle seems to be 'now that I have your attention I need you to all stop this Christmas thing because it makes ME uncomfortable.' I'm not even religious but holy hell he can take a long walk off a short pier."

"It's a hat. It's a red stocking hat with a white (furry?) hem. Santa is NOT a religious symbol. That's like saying the 'ok' hand gesture is a white supremacist symbol."

"If that's true, then literally everything is offensive. Some people may be offended that most code is written in a form of English, which is clearly a case of Anglo/European/Western imperialism!"

Most of this garbage originates on the Left Coast, but the rank and file in the tech community are fighting back. Talk to some devs who frequent these online forums and they'll tell you they're sick and tired of having their creativity and ingenuity stifled by SJWs who show up to cause problems and insert politics into their profession.

As a user on Reddit pointed out, "The biggest problem with nonsense like this is it never ends."

Giving in to these miscreants just emboldens them and they always come back for more. One can never be woke enough to please them, and we're all just a misstep (or mis-tweet) away from having our lives blown up over some imagined offense.



Anonymous said...

I am an Atheist, but I enjoy Christmas and strongly defend the right of others to live their religion provided that they do not try to push their beliefs on to others who do not want it.

Dean said...

Christian: Santa's hat is not a religious symbol. It is, instead, a commercial symbol, intended to remind everyone it is time to grab their check books and credit cards and go spend money.

Baby Jesus in the crib is the religious symbol.

For those of us who are Christians, the season is definitely a religious holiday, a time to celebrate Christ's birth.

Those of other faiths may find it a time for family gatherings, office parties, a break from school, or a time to enjoy the decoration of buildings and trees. All that without much thought of Christ. Or they may ignore it. And that's okay.

Take a deep breath, close your eyes, and relax. Christmas does not kill Jews.

Those that do kill Jews are emotionally unbalanced people looking to blame their problems on anyone but themselves. Christmas has nothing to do with their actions.

Bird of Paradise said...

Too bad their so weak to give in just to one silly complaint And Anon 2:17 we need more like you who wont demand the whole nation cow-tows to their demands like Mr Newdow and Company