Families attending a Festival of Lights event in downtown Cape Coral, Fla., on Tuesday were met with a Grinch of a man screaming, “There’s no Santa Claus!”
The unidentified man stood with a sign and yelled to children that their parents were lying to them and was captured on video by a mother, reports local Fort Myers news station WBBH-TV.
The man, who may very well be on Santa’s naughty list, was captured on video releasing guttural screams about the existence, or lack thereof, of Santa Claus.
Children were waiting in line to see Santa Claus, and while some were “too distracted” to notice the Scrooge, other children were left in tears.
Cindy Menkes, a Cape Coral resident, told the outlet, “I feel sorry for that individual. He must have a very sad life. I think it’s a shame our children are faced with so many difficult things in this world that the magic of this time of year, it’s taken away from them, and they are innocent.”
“There’s no sense of decency with those kinds of individuals,” Menkes said. “I think unfortunately you are going to have people who just want to spoil it for everyone.”
Police officers were present at the scene but said they were unable to do anything because the man had the right to free speech.
This isn’t the first occasion Santa’s existence has been called into question this holiday season. Earlier this month, news broke that a substitute teacher in New Jersey told a classroom full of first graders that Santa Claus and other characters were not real.