America is in danger of losing a grand tradition! It’s something that we, as Americans, have recognized and counted on for a long, long time.
And now, it’s under assault.
You might think I’m talking about Donald Trump’s reluctance to say that he’ll automatically accept the election results and give a concession speech if he loses. Depending how far he and his most ardent followers take it, that could be scary. But it’s not what I’m talking about.
No, what I’d like to address is something that’s much scarier (and it’s supposed to be): Halloween!
More specifically, I’d like to address the assault on Halloween. I see Halloween as an innocent occasion that’s an excuse for kids to have fun dressing up, eat too much candy and run a little wild in a world full of of helicopter parenting and IQ tests for 4-year-olds.
In case you think the assault on Halloween is something I’m making up (like the costumes I had to when I was a kid because my family was too cheap for store-bought ones), I have several examples:
1. Tiny Kemper County in Mississippi has banned the wearing of clown costumes through Nov. 1. If you’re caught in one you could be slapped with a $150 fine! That’s an assault on the First Amendment — and on good old common sense — but it’s also an assault on Halloween.
2. The University of Florida is encouraging students who are offended by certain Halloween costumes to call their counseling center hotline. Nothing is going to turn people against Halloween more than a scenario where someone who has a true need to speak to a counselor in the middle of the night keeps getting the counseling center’s voicemail because the line is tied up by a special snowflakes who are offended by an idiot wearing blackface.
3) The “sexy” Ken Bone costume that Yandy.com is now marketing. Yup, a guy who thinks Fred Rogers is a snappy dresser, can’t make his mind up on who to vote for and split his pants on the way to ask a question of the (potential) future leader of the Free World, now has a costume fashioned after him. With its bare midriff, however, I don’t think he should ever consider dressing up as his “sexy” self. The fact that it exists at all is an assault on Halloween.
This is nothing new, by the way. Having grown up in a family with a lot of Evangelical Christians, I have watched the assault on Halloween go on for quite a while. Sure, I was given the opportunity to go door-to-door wearing a stupid costume, but a lot of churches have decided that Halloween is verboten.
Still, a lot of them play along with the evil day (as do schools and other institutions that don’t want to offend). They just disguise it as a “fall festival” or “harvest celebration” and (still) allow kids to dress up and stuff their faces with candy.
Please don’t get me wrong. I’m not trying to say that folks shouldn’t run their church the way they see fit, believe what they believe and celebrate the holidays they see as actual holy days.
But if I take my kid door-to-door in a Hello Kitty costume, put a skeleton and some fake headstones in my yard and yell “boo,” please don’t accuse me of worshiping Satan. I’m a fan of the other guy.
And please take note that I have no plans to sacrifice a goat with the kids.
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