December 9, 2005

Merry Christmas from the Sunshine State!

MIAMI BEACH -- In one South Florida community, a man's holiday decorations are causing holiday fear for local children instead of creating holiday cheer, news partner NBC 6 reported Wednesday.

Residents called police and complained to the city that a house near West 50th Street and Fifth Avenue had a life-sized, blindfolded Santa Claus doll hanging on a tree with its hands tied and its mouth gagged.

Some residents were furious and said their naughty neighbor put jolly old St. Nick in a position that is not too merry. But even police officers couldn't save a Santa who was bound, gagged and hanging for the holidays.

The owner of the house says it's freedom of speech. But his neighbors think it's the start of a creepy Christmas.

"It's not healthy. I mean, if somebody has something against Santa Claus or something, maybe express it in some other way," resident Lori Vega said.

Parents are afraid the decoration will cause a nightmare before Christmas for their children.

"I'm not sure what his reasoning is, but a lot of little kids are upset by it," one parent said.

The owner was not at the house, but NBC 6's Tom Llamas found him at his primary residence off Lincoln Road. The man said the Santa Claus was an artistic expression.

Some residents say the damage is already done.

"He might be the Grinch. He might be friendly with the Grinch," resident Joanie Stein said. Stein, who has lived on the block for years, said the dangling Santa sickens him. "It's a beautiful neighborhood and I think it's just weird. I've never seen anything like this here."

The homeowner told NBC 6 the hanged Santa Claus would be down sometime Wednesday.

Have a fantastically fucked-up Friday, fukkers!


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