Postscript: 'White Santa Claus' Critic Thought Penguins Were Mammals

As the absurd spectacle surrounding Fox News Channel Megyn Kelly’s recent joke about the race of Santa Claus is dying down, there’s one remainder of the story that is worth noting: It would appear that Aisha Harris, the Slate writer who started the whole brouhaha, appears not to know that a penguin, the animal which she semi-seriously argued should replace Santa, is a bird and not a mammal.

As noted by media blogger Jim Romenesko, the original Harris piece bears this amusing postscript: “Correction, Dec. 10, 2013: This article originally misidentified penguins as mammals. They are birds.”

It certainly is ironic that outlets like MSNBC which have been using the words of a person so ignorant of such a basic fact to bash the highly intelligent Kelly for a misconstrued joke.

One hopes at the very least that Harris’s piece saw no editor before that error was approved for publication. The lefty online mag does deserve credit for preserving the embarrassing screwup, however.

Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield, creator of NewsBusters and president of Dialog New Media, an internet marketing and design firm, left NewsBusters at the end of 2013