2020 has its official Santa.
An Illinois 6-year-old was left in floods of tears after Santa Claus lectured him for asking for a Nerf gun for Christmas.
Michael’s super awkward encounter was captured by his mom Sabella, who had to console the sobbing boy in the middle of the Harlem Irving Plaza Mall.
As if the scenario wasn’t already difficult enough, the boy had to speak to Santa through a mask, across a desk and behind a plexiglass screen.
After being asked what he wanted on Christmas, the nervous child finally pipes up he’d like a gun — only to be immediately shot down by Woke St. Nick.
“No — no guns,” he admonishes.
“A Nerf gun,” his mom clarifies, pointing out the first-grader wasn’t actually asking for a real firearm.
“Nope, not even a Nerf gun. Nope,” Santa scolds. “If your dad wants to get it for you that’s fine, but I can’t bring it to you. What else would you like? There’s lots of other toys; there’s Legos, bicycles, there’s cars and trucks. What do you think? What do you think?”
But after being told off by Santa Claus, the heartbroken boy can only burst into tears.
“You’ll still get it,” his mom quietly assures him, shooting the mall Santa daggers that were definitely not foam-tipped.
“My poor baby. This was the first year Michael was excited to go see Santa,” she wrote afterwards on Facebook.
“It was supposed to be magical but instead I had to watch my sweet little boy fight back tears because Santa told him No because of his own personal beliefs.”
She said she had to think on her feet and explain to her son that the mall Santa was just a helper, and not the real guy.
“I just wanted to console my baby and get him out of there, flipping out on Santa would have only made it worse,” she added. “His Elfie is going to bring him a Nerf gun directly from the North Pole, from the real Santa, tonight.”
Parents on Facebook reacted in fury to the video, blasting the Santa for airing his opinions on an innocent child.
“Santa shouldn’t have a political agenda and that’s exactly what this sounds like,” one commenter summarized. “I hope the elves shit in that Santa’s shoes every day for the rest of his life.”
Many offered to send Michael Nerf guns for Xmas — his mom thanked everyone for their outpouring of love and for restoring “some of the magic that that awful Santa stole.”
However, she insisted her son’s Christmas list had already been more than fulfilled, and called on those offering to send toys to children in need.
“We’re trying to turn this unfortunate incident into something positive and spread cheer to children who really need it!” the family wrote, adding that the mall was now organizing a Nerf gun toy drive for charity.