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Historical society apologizes for ‘insensitive’ Christmas mailer. Here's what it said.

A Massachusetts historical society found itself under fire after sending out what some people considered to be a racially insensitive mailer. (Scott Eisen/Getty Images)

A Dorchester, Massachusetts, historical society has apologized for what some people apparently perceived to be a racially insensitive mailer.

The card, which invited residents to The Dorchester Historical Society's annual "Holiday Open House," was titled "We're dreaming of a white Dorchester."

As in the song, "White Christmas." As in snow, and a play on words.

... Seriously?


A spokesperson for the society said that the organization had no desire to leave others out with their invitation after receiving criticism on social media.

One user tweet read, "[L]ooks like some one [sic] did not proof this. The message of a white Chrismtas [sic] implies others are left out. Maybe not intentional but not how it appears. Faux Paux [sic]."

Another chimed in and added, "Probably just goes to show you don’t have any minorities on your board or communications team....might be time to start incorporating some diversity in your team since they would’ve noticed this insensitivity."

Another user even said that people at the society — every last one of them, to be exact — should have lost their jobs over the mailer.

"Oversight? Not one person in your office raised there [sic] hand and spoke up? They should all be fired. #OFD," the user wrote.

So what did the historical society say?

In a tweet, the society issued a statement on the matter.

"We are very truly sorry about our graphic used for this event," the tweet read. "This was an unfortunate oversight on our part and the event photograph has been removed from our social media. We were simply changing the words to the classic Christmas carol and did not think it through properly."

The tweet continued, "Thank you for alerting us to this matter as we certainly do not want to project that message, even if completely accidentally. Again, thank you."

Anything else?

The newly revamped online invitation now reads, "May your Dorchester days be merry and bright."

Even Boston Mayor Marty Walsh weighed in on the ordeal and said that he believed "good people" simply made a "big mistake."

"They certainly didn't mean anything mean or vicious or racist about it," Walsh said. "I felt really bad when I saw it last night, because they do a lot of good work there; they're a nonprofit that doesn't have a lot of money.

"It's a lot of volunteers," Walsh added, "so they don't have any professional people around them trying to spin this thing, and I honestly think they made an honest mistake."

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