White Santa and Black Santa's “Naughty or Nice” List Names Have Internet in Shambles

Distractify Staff - Author

Nov. 22 2023, Published 11:21 a.m. ET

The 2023 holiday season is upon us. However, if you’ve been in a department store since before Halloween, you’ll see that most shops have started spreading Christmas cheer in their aisles.

Of course, Christmas is only fun with Jolly Old Saint Nick, Kris Kringle, or, as the kids call him, Santa Claus. Santa has been many things, but in November 2023, a shopper realized he can also be multiple races, including Black and white.

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While looking at white and Black Santa figures, the shopper noticed there were more differences than their skin color. The names of the people who made the Santas’ “nice” list showed another significance of the two characters.

Keep reading to see what we mean!

Santa Claus writing a list
Source: Getty Images
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A woman notices the differences in the “nice” list names for white Santa and Black Santa figurines.

If you celebrate Christmas, you’ve likely been to a house where Santa Claus figures sat beside the tree or atop the fireplace. However, the traditional decorations have become more inclusive, at least where Amber Ruffin shops.

In case you didn’t know, Amber is a comedian, writer, and the host of her Peacock late-night show, The Amber Ruffin Show. In contrast, Amber’s accolades are pretty well-known, although her shopping preferences aren’t as public.

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In November 2023, Amber posted a photo of her shopping at a retail store. The snap showed a white Santa holding a list and a Black Santa doing the same. The similarities stop there, as white Santa and Black Santa don’t deliver gifts on the same blocks.

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White Santa’s list included "Thomas," "Mindy," "Tyler," and "Mary." Black Santa’s list, however, added the names "Latoya," "Nia," "Briona," "La’Shaun," and "Damion."

For Amber, seeing a white and a Black Santa wasn’t too shocking, as Black Santa figurines have been around for quite some time. However, the comedian was floored by how accurate Black Santa’s “nice” list was in the name department.

“LOOK AT THE NAMES,” Amber begged her Twitter followers.

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White and Black Santa’s name differences didn’t upset Black shoppers.

Now, some could see the vastly different lists of white and Black Santas' names as teetering on the racially offensive line. The fact that “Latoya” belongs with Black Santa while “Mindy” belongs with white Santa certainly shows the creator has some bias, considering there are Black girls and girls of color named Mindy (Mindy Kaling would like to enter the chat!).

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However, rather than deeming the Santas racist, we’d like to offer some perspective. If you grew up or are currently a Black child with a non-stereotypically “white” name, chances are finding your name on jewelry, tourist keychains, and clothing was next to impossible.

So, for many Black shoppers, seeing stereotypically Black names was a step in the right, inclusive direction.

“I spot “Dewayne” on the Black Santa list, and honestly, it feels right,” comedian DeWayne Perkins responded on Twitter.

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“Separate but equal at its finest,” another commenter joked.

“Quinn & Kayla are also much prettier named than Mindy & Mary,” a third commenter argued. “Black Santa got the nice list, & white Santa got the naughty list, it seems.”

“Black Santa said he is taking care of HIS people,” a fourth poster said.

In addition to supporting Black and white Santa’s separate names, several X users felt the company that made the figurines shouldn’t stop there. One suggested the company expand to the LGBTQIA+ community to continue spreading inclusive joy.

“I need a gay Santa and a drag Santa..... With corresponding multi-hyphenated names,” the user noted.

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