Secular Snowman?

Lyrics to the original Frosty the Snowman song by Steve Rollins and Steve Nelson (1950), make no mention of any religious icons. But later, Frosty was picked up by Rankin Bass, who made all those cartoons that my generation grew up watching at holiday time. Rankin Bass added the Santa factor, and no amount of love or money will convince me that Santa is secular, so please don’t try. Once you’ve got Santa added, it’s all over and Frosty gains religious overtones.

Please don’t mistake this as an anti-Frosty or anti-Santa or anti-Christmas diatriabe. (Aside: Doncha think it’s interesting that the anti-Santa campaign is religiously motivated?) It’s just that I was reading about how scAlito, the new Supremes nominee, has ruled on various things and one of the cases listed mentions Frosty. Here’s a quote from the NY Times:

The court held that the display didn’t violate the establishment clause of the First Amendment because in addition to a creche and a menorah, it also had a Frosty the Snowman and a banner hailing diversity.

I’m just saying that I’m not convinced that Frosty represents a secular icon, or that Frosty is even really secular. It appears that he was conceived as a secular icon, but that pop culture has created a partnership with Santa that belies his secular roots.

Yeah, I’m obsessing over the details. It’s because the big picture freaks me out.

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