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Is there anything wrong with children or adults wearing Santa Claus costumes on Purim? While on Christmas itself it might involve some sort of issur of participating in or celebrating of a non-Jew religious holiday, would doing so on Purim be ok?

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    Back when he was learning in Jerusalem in the 1980s, my father saw quite a few chareidi kids dressed in Kratzmach finery around Purim. – Noach MiFrankfurt Jan 1 '17 at 2:03
  • @NoachMiFrankfurt That's most likely due to the fact that they didn't know what it was. I remember reading a book written by an american who moved to Israel in which the author describes scenes similar to this. The distributors would sell this stuff for very cheap (because it's after the season), and the Israelis, not knowing better, would buy it for their kids as costumes for Purim. – Ploni Mar 27 '17 at 4:15
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    Real example here. Pretty sure they have no idea what such a costume represents – mbloch May 27 '18 at 17:03
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Answer from Rabbi David Sperling:

...we can examine your question of dressing as a Santa on Purim. There may be a line of reasoning to permit such a thing. We find in the laws of Purim (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim, 696:8) that the Rema writes that some people have a custom for men to dress as women on Purim. Even though this is normally forbidden (as is mentioned explicitly in the Torah), because it is done in the spirit of levity of the holiday, some opinions believe it to be permitted. Perhaps one could say that this applies to the Santa costume – because it is worn in the spirit of Purim fun, and nobody seriously thinks that the person has any real connection or feelings for Santa (or the Christian festival associated with Santa), it could be permitted.

Even though this line of thought might be enough to refrain from rebuking another person who did in fact wear such a costume, one should certainly not rely on this to themselves dress in such a way (or dress their children up as Santa). The Rema quotes Rabbis who forbid forbidden dressup on Purim, and the Mishna Brurah (ibid) quotes major sources who are explicit in their disapproval of such actions. That would rule out using such logic in our case.

Read full article here.

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    Isn't that about cross dressing? Where does the Rema say not to dress up at all. I don't see why Santa would be a problem from this. – robev Apr 27 '18 at 17:27
  • To be honest, I like that you found the link, but the answer given is not very satisfying... I can't justify upvoting or downvoting. – רבות מחשבות Apr 27 '18 at 18:03
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    The article assumes Santa is assur, and justifies not rebuking others because of Purim, but doesn't explain why it's a problem in the first place. – robev Apr 27 '18 at 18:50

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