Are you wondering how to associate love and Christmas without talking about family’s love and straight love interests? Norway found out for you!
The Norwegian postal services « Posten » just released a Christmas video entitled « When Harry met Santa » (1.5 million views at the time of writing!) that has been talked to around the world either to acclaim or criticize it. If this video really hit close to home, it’s because it tells the story of Harry, a man who encounters Santa one Christmas and his life quickly evolves around that one night where he can spend a bit of time with the new object of his affection. But this always brings him sadness, because Santa has a lot to do and not enough time to spend with him. The story ends well, with Santa having hired the Norwegian postal services in order to help him so he could be able to spend the night with his love. They even kiss! And that’s so damn cool.
With this video, Posten had a deeper goal than just to celebrate Christmas and promote themselves. In 2022, it will be the 50th anniversary of the decriminalization of homosexuality in Norway. Section 213 of the Penal Code, which made sexual acts between men illegal, was repelled on April 21, 1972. Apparently, women were not included in that thinking, but I guess it was never really a question?
Norway was also one of the first countries in the world to enact an anti-discrimination law explicitly including sexual orientation in 1981, but gay people still had to wait until 2009 to be allowed to marry someone from the same sex, adopt, and women couples to be allowed to access assisted insemination treatments. Trans people had to wait a little bit longer to be really recognized, with a law passed in 2016 allowing the change of legal gender based on self-determination.
In general, Norway has been quite advanced compared to the rest of Europe in its protection of the queer community, even though it’s still not perfect and the government could work more on the representation of this community, instead of letting companies take the lead on this. You also have to consider that a lot of people still respect religious traditions, and that is impacting the question.
But at the end of the day, the Norwegian postal services provided a sweet video to the world, and we can only thank them for that! Although I might add that it could have been less white.