People got upset about Mall of America having a black Santa


(Photo: CNN)

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BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — For the first time, the Mall of America hosted an African-American Santa.

Santa Experience owner Landon Luther told WCCO the mall wanted to have “a Santa for everyone.”

But not everyone was nice about the new option.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reportedly had to shut down its online comments section “because the dialogue became so offensive.”

Some people reportedly got out of line for photos with Santa, Texas native and U.S. Army veteran Larry Jefferson. Some called for a boycott of the mall. Jefferson kept a jolly attitude about the whole thing.

“It’s no big deal, I’m still Santa, I just happen to be a Santa of color,” Jefferson told WCCO.

“[Santa represents] a good spirit. I’m just a messenger to bring hope, love and peace to girls and boys,” Affinity Magazine quoted Jefferson as saying.

Many people on Twitter were quick to point out the protesters weren’t really embracing the spirit of the season — or reality.

The Mall of America has been open for almost 25 years.

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