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DR (Danmarks Radio,) is Denmark's national broadcasting corporation. Founded in 1925 as a public-service organization, it is today Denmark's oldest and largest electronic media enterprise. DR operates four nationwide FM radio stations.
Screenshot of a child wearing apparent blackface as part of a vintage "TV Christmas calendar" episode on Danish TV
Amélie Reichmuth

In Denmark, Beloved Christmas TV Special Cancelled For Blackface Scenes

The director of the 1997 episode complained that TV executives are being "too sensitive."

If there’s one thing Scandinavians take seriously, it’s Christmas. And over the past half-century, in addition to all the family and religious traditions, most Nordic countries share a passion for what's known as the "TV Christmas calendar": 24 nightly television episodes that air between Dec. 1 and Christmas Eve.

Originally, the programs were strictly aimed at children; but over the years, the stories evolved more towards family entertainment, with some Christmas calendars becoming classics that generations of Swedes, Danes, Norwegians and others have watched each year as national and family traditions in their own right.

But this year in Denmark, one vintage episode has been pulled from the air because of a blackface scene.

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Aggressive gull

Danish Town Uses Drones To Target Pooping Seagulls

Even in the small Danish town of Holbæk, officials have resorted to taking out their enemies with a campaign of drone strikes. The target: a flock of seagulls (not that flock) described as aggressive and, well, messy.

After constant reports of the seagulls threatening citizens and stealing their food, the town in northern Denmark has announced their Facebook page that drones will be used to systematically map out the birds' nests and spray their eggs with paraffin oil to seal the shell and thereby "sterilize" them, Danish radio station DR reports.

"The gulls have developed into a veritable plague," says Karen Christensen, head of Holbæk's Environment Office. "The gulls are aggressive and steal food from people's tables. They also pollute. What they consume must also come out."

The initiative has sparked heated debate on the town's Facebook page. "I'm with the seagulls," says Oznur Bahar Kaya. "They have a right to be here and shit on us like we shit on their home, nature."