I can’t believe I’m writing the post for the Christmas debate. The semester has ended! And yet, we closed out gloriously in Riggs Library (as we always do), debating Resolved: Frosty the Snowman is an Abomination. Mr. Taylor Willis (SFS ’16) of Texas continued his tradition of keynoting Christmas debates by affirming the resolution, joined by Mr. Jonathan Marrow (COL ’18) of New Jersey who made his induction. Negating were Ms. Dimitra Rallis (COL ’15) of New York and, making her induction, Ms. Xinlan Hu (COL ’18) of China.
Mr. Marrow began the debate by defining abomination—something that makes you feel disgust and hatred. Frosty, that “monolithic monstrosity” naturally fit the bill—it can’t be argued otherwise. He’s offensive on several fronts: religion, ethics, politics, and more! As for religion, why is that we don’t have other symbols of Christmas? There’s “no talking Menorah” or anything—even the secular humanists should be offended! Some court in Pennsylvania ruled that “creationism cannot be taught in schools”, yet we let a symbol for Christmas dominate the season! Moreover, he smokes a coal pipe—bad for children and the environment—when Mr. Marrow asked himself if it was “clean coal?” the only reply was “I’m not sure…certainly not solar.” And then there’s the Patriarchy. “Frosty is all white”, and with his accessories (coal pipe and top hat), he can be nothing but part of the 1%! And what about the Obamanation? We need to see that birth certificate! Frosty’s un-Kantian, un-Christian, distracts from the “oppressed proletariat of the elves”, and rumor has it he may have even backed a 3rd year plan at Leo’s…what a monster.
Ms. Hu was not quite so ready to condemn this jolly soul. She really asked the question of, “Who is Frosty?” Especially because she had never known him before the debate. Yet, now that she knows him, Ms. Hu was shocked that someone could call a loving, shopping-mall adored creature an abomination. And what other music would malls play during the Christmas season? Justin Bieber? Frosty is a thousand times better! Yet, going back to the framing, Ms. Hu reminded us that we’re discussing the song and the movie as the context for Frosty, and that an abomination needs to cause aversion. She also noted that “he’s a fairytale they say”, and so could there ever be a reason to fear Frosty? In fact, even though he’s an inanimate object come alive, Frosty’s not that different from us. We’re made from chemical elements like hydrogen, carbon, and oxygen and—WHOA—Frosty is too! Oxygen and hydrogen in particular. More importantly, “it is our choices, Harry, that show who we are” (Harry Potter), and Frosty was noble and selfless. Finally, Frosty is all about freedom and rebellion, daring the police to catch him if they could. And, although in America we see Frosty as abominable because he dies from the sun, like vampires, the sun is actually a symbol for communism. Frosty is good ole’ American freedom!
Mr. Willis could not condone Ms. Hu’s speech, noting that he was keynoting for the “the good, wholesome, American children.” In natural development, American children become hardworking and productive adults, but with the red menace out there, they are threatened! And, on December 25th we celebrate one among our Founders—yes, you guessed it, Jesus—with excess capitalist consumption. Yet…what do the words “happy” and “jolly” remind us of? Perhaps Frosty, but also….SANTA. Last year we decided Santa is red, and since it already seems that Santa and Frosty are one and the same, can there be any hesitation in saying that Frosty is also Red? Mr. Willis thought not. During that same debate, we also decided that Santa is Karl Marx. Well, every Marx needs a Lenin—Frosty! He’s been running rampant since 1969! Stop Frosty! SAVE OUR YOUTH!
Ms. Rallis started her speech by asking what if Frosty were real. Well, she posited, he would be made of the same stuff as us—water and American freedom. She then talked about Frosty in religion and science. On the religion end, if you believe in God then you must be on the negation—Frosty is “divine creation”, and can’t be abominable by that definition. On the other hand, if you prefer science, Frosty is alive as a “marvel of science” all due to the Higgs Boson—yes, she brought quantum mechanics into this. Ms. Rallies called for a new era of American innovation, declaring that Frosty could be the foundation for it—before you know it, we’ll have Sandy the Duneman crushing ISIS for us. In fact, Frosty will be our wave of innovation and “we’re gonna ride this wave to American hegemony…hegeMONEY!”
Mr. Hallisey quickly got up to say first that America is “Jesus, capitalism, the O’Reilly Factor” and then to declare that the human ingenuity that brought Frosty to life was driven by the same hubris that created the abomination that is Frankenstein. On the other hand, Ms. Burke noted that though creating life from the void is problematic, ovaries do the same thing daily (but are children abominations?). Mr. Spagnuolo (SFS ’14) came back to nostalgically tell the floor to keep on and cherish the beautiful Philodemic Society—and to note the tradition of Jesus and communism during the Christmas debate. He was followed by Ms. Wynter (COL ’14) who ceded her time to a duet by Ms. Cuppari and Ms. Katherine Landau (SFS ’17), who sang “Let it Go”, cheerfully singing that “Frosty’s not just a mound of snow”.
Professor Bonnie Morris surprised the floor—we had a guest we didn’t even know about—and reminded Ms. Burke that after 50, not everyone can generate life. She also added that it should be the responsibility of the nanny state to control “saccharine sweetness” of Frosty—he’s bad for kids! Mr. Kleinman then followed her with an Obama and JFK impression, announcing that the 14th Amendment means respect for all—“whether or not we like it, Frosty’s a…person.” He was also fined $5 for use of inappropriate language. Mr. Naft, however, called Frosty the Snowman (PATRIARCHY!) a communist manifesto who also endangered children by playing in the streets. Mr. Wang retorted that the difference between a snow man and a snow woman is only snow balls and then subsequently returned to the tradition of singing with “Make a Man out of You”, saying that Frosty is “slushy as a smoothie, but alive within.” Ms. Grace came to the debate with little prior knowledge of Frosty, but was still convinced that making a creature with a top hat and a carrot alive was an abomination.
The non-members were just as eloquent as the members. Mr. Adam Gonzalez (SFS ’18) asserted that Frosty is like Aslan—an allegory for Jesus who came from a virgin (the guy was a wizard after all…), dies to save the world (well the girl), and then resurrects 3 minutes later. Jesus isn’t an abomination! Ms. Janelle Spira (NHS ’18) called this blatant sacrilege though, and boldly claimed that America was founded on religious principles—making religion patriotic—and as such, Frosty can be nothing but abominable. Mr. Brian Bies (MSB ’18) gave her the burden of proof, however, and said TV networks would have banned any abomination long ago—Frosty is saving our youth! Far from saving our youth, Mr. Richie Mullaney (COL ’18) posited that Frosty is so arrogant as to believe that he’s “too good for the South…[and] too good for pants”, and he doesn’t even help starving children in Africa—he’s a white, male, NJ prep school person and, as the Society well knows, that makes you an abomination (but we love you Mr. Marrow!!).
Mr. Ben Ellis (COL ’18), on the contrary, stated that Frosty “doesn’t deserve the title” of abomination—he looks nothing like the abominable snowman! On the flip side, Mr. Vishwanathan (SFS ’18) remembered the recent racial tensions and though about how much we idolize white snowmen—Frosty’s just part of that. Mr. Anton Smaliak (SFS ’18) approached the debate from a new angle—that of “communism is good”—which saw ‘Mericans as “concentrated, undiluted, high-fructose freedom” that Frosty is not. Ms. Alex Weissman (SFS ’18) reasserted Mr. Naft’s point on the Patriarchy, saying that most fairytales have awful context.
Mr. Weiner called us to “go OG with the OT” (Old Testament), where abomination has several meanings, none of which fit Frosty—I mean, would you call Harry Potter an abomination? Well, Ms. Correia thought so. She freestyle rapped for us, saying that Frosty’s “too cold…not a man I would hold”, “ice cold slush”, and a pedophile. Ms. Egan then regaled us with a story about Mr. Marrow and then talked about words that give life—something she learned was possible in the Philodemic—and gave a message to non-members, encouraging them to continue coming to the debates regardless of speaking. Mr. Whelan then took up the tradition of reframing the debate on the floor to make it about Obamanation, specifically his executive order on immigration, and gave us a Tex-Mex version of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, with kids in the casa all dressed in their pijamas. Ms. Coccia then spoke about Frosty—a lovable symbol for our dear President DiMisa—and requested more sentimentality and roasting of Chris on the floor.
Mr. Greco, from the balcony, accepted Ms. Coccia’s request and told the story of how he first entered the Philodemic under Chris’ glaring gaze. He was also running away from Sgt. Edgar as he approached the President’s chair, so he had to cut his speech short. Vice President Wilson decided it was time for him to step in—framing is his issue—and changed the debate to keeping Chris in Christmas. He was all for getting rid of Chris (I wonder why…). Mr. Young tried to bring it back to Frosty, declaring that Frosty may not be a man—he has a button nose, not a carrot, and the carrot was the only phallic symbol he had. Let’s reject the media characterization of Frosty. Mr. Perez-Reyes opened with a recitation of “O Captain! My Captain!” and recalled when he first met President DiMisa. He also closed with a lovely song! Then, President DiMisa himself arrived to appropriately end the floor portion. He told a story from each of his four years in Philodemic—from meeting Sgt. Edgar and VP Wilson freshman year, to being One Direction sophomore year, to sharing a room with Mr. Perez-Reyes this summer, and finally Progressive Dinner Talent Show this year. We closed the floor portion, upon request of the President, with a sing-a-long of Frosty!
Ms. Rallis briefly readdressed the crowd, observing the sad-happy in the crowd—so much sappiness! She noted the variety of words mentioned (Obamanation, witchcraft, Patriarchy, ovaries, snowballs, Americanism, just to name a few), and talked about the first time she built a snowman. She wanted a friend to be there with her, and even though the snowman melted soon, she was always happy thinking that her friend would soon return.
Mr. Willis tossed out his pre-prepared speech and talked about President DiMisa. President DiMisa, like many great Americans—FDR, JFK, Neil Patrick Harris—also has three names: Christopher Michael DiMisa. Mr. Willis was roped in and kept at Philodemic by Mr. DiMisa, and he thanked the President for such a wonderful year with many improvements.
Ms. Hu also thanked President DiMisa, but also brought it back to Frosty. She noted the Patriarchy issue (SNOWman, not snowMAN—the discrimination!), the top hat that matched Uncle Sam’s, the coal pipe from the Lord of the Rings, and the patently false statements about communism—there’s no parading in communist countries! Along those same lines, if Frosty isn’t communist then he isn’t an Obamanation. Moreover, Frosty is a secular mascot and secularism is surely not an abomination. In fact, the song about Frosty has been deemed “safe” and secular. Above all, Frosty has enabled love by sharing the Christmas spirit.
Mr. Marrow closed out the night by mentioning how spectacular Chris has been. He also decided he will be Warren’s Revolutionary Guard. He furthermore gave thanks to Caroline and all of the other Philodemicians who have helped him. Finally, he announced that from a Jewish perspective, “the Philodemic may be the most Jesuit part of Georgetown.”
And finally, with a vote of 29-5-49 this resolution was negated! Once again, a big congratulations to Ms. Hu and Mr. Marrow—they are spectacular additions to the Society and we’re so happy to have started inductions for members of the Class of 2018. The Christmas Party ensued, and what a jolly night it was!
It’s incredible that we have already arrived to the end of the semester—although flyering in the rain, blogging at midnight, and furiously scribbling notes at each debate has been difficult, I’m actually quite sad to say goodbye to this position, and it was truly an honor to record the history of the Society. I do look forward to reading our future amanuensis’ posts next semester though—I know Ms. Hu will do an excellent job!
It’s been real.