Gifts From Santa Claus To ….

Lafe Tolliver

By Lafe Tolliver, Esq
Guest Column

Well, a jolly Ho!Ho!Ho! to all, and for those who like to open their Christmas presents before Christmas Day, I am presenting the following presents in the hopes that I will not have to come down that tight chimney again before another year is out!

Yes, I did check my list twice to see if the following recipients have been naughty or nice, but I will let the gifts speak for themselves!

To:  The Toledo Library System, a gift of gratitude for your astute programming and opening your doors to non-typical library events and your emphasis on the importance of reading. Great job! Keep it up! It is needed.

To:   Romules Durant, superintendent of Toledo Public Schools, a time out for your inability to move the needle as it regards K-3 reading scores. This is a chronic problem for the school system, and they have yet to radically change their agenda as to reaching those at-risk kids. However, kudos for the various programs that high schoolers can undertake as to career choices. Need to bring in a “no-excuse” director of reading and speech so that no child can hide behind being a functional illiterate.

To:  Parents of kids in public schools. Yeah, you know who you are. The ones who do not check upon your kids’ homework to see that it is properly completed. The ones who do not attend parent-teacher conferences about your kid being the class clown or not regularly attending classes.  You get three lumps of coal in your stocking bag.

Education starts at home. If you can’t do it, then seek out help from those who can assist you. If you are not motivated enough to help raise a generation of literate kids, my suggestion is stop having babies who will be educationally neglected because you are lazy or don’t have the vision to see that your child needs your input to make it to the finish line.

To:   The Black churches and pastors in Toledo.  You get five lumps of coal in your offering plates! For decades, you have intentionally refused to coalesce around collective economics that would have lifted “forgotten” segments of your community out of crime and poverty because you were and are terrified to share your weekly tithes and offerings with the less fortunate.

Your “fear” of each other and working together around money is baffling especially since such cooperation would work to your benefit and increase your membership numbers.

How sad it is to see so many Black banks (aka: the local Black churches) in the Black community with ministers who pay lip service about uplifting and helping  their members prosper but when it comes time to share the wealth, they run and scatter and hide behind their pulpits, shaking in their boots! You are neither hot nor cold!

To:  The agency that runs the operation in which Greyhound parks their buses.

You get a lump of coal in your stocking since you are ineffectual in demanding That Greyhound either shapes up or ships out of Toledo! Their service is appalling and there is no end in sight as to them getting their act together for efficient and on time services for the patrons who need such bus services.

To:  Kudos to Will Lucas for his imaginative and visionary outlook for Toledo and his well-received TolHouse venue on Summit Street. For this, Lucas gets a well-deserved, Ho!Ho!Ho!

To:  The upcoming January 2024 event in which Reverend Floyd Rose will be celebrated for his prior decades of civil rights activism in Toledo. A most needed observation of a civil rights warrior. For this event deserves three pats on the back of the sponsor(s). Santa has got your back!

To:  Toledo City Council for championing Section 8 Housing. There is a housing shortage across the country and the additional housing in the Southland shopping district will be most welcoming to those who need such shelter…despite the naysayers! For this act, Santa will give to you the plate of cookies and milk that is normally left for him!

To:  The MetroParks System of Toledo! Wow! Great job done with the new downtown park. It is a jewel in your crown. Great vision. Keep it up! You qualify for a ride in my sleigh guided by Rudolph!

Well, that is all for now. I gotta get back to the North Pole and finish up with zip coding all these presents! Just a note to your parents out there. Quit asking for all of these gun toys for your kids!

Give them books and toys to stir up their curiosity and imagination…not how to shoot someone!


Contact Lafe Tolliver (your secret Santa),  at