I know, I know…weeks away, but my students and children everywhere are already talking about it. And I’m already wondering why, why, why we give so much attention to one day on the calendar. And I’ve decided that the answer is money, money, money. Halloween has to be our second most profitable holiday for retailers. Just think about it. What other holiday includes cards, costumes, seasonal clothing, candy, food, and decorations? Products of all kinds get seasonal packaging for Halloween. There are toys and games and makeup. And there are all the things connected with pumpkins- field tours, pumpkin stands, carving contests, etc. I would imagine that only the gifts given at Christmas put it ahead in consumerism. Valentine’s Day and even Easter must pale in comparison. I’d love to see some statistics!
I know the origins of Halloween are not as sinister as many believe, but the current celebrations make one wonder if most people don’t just see the holiday as a free license for a day of evil. It is no longer safe to let children play “trick or treat” in any neighborhood. If you still think it is I suggest you refer to your local sex offender registration list. The last time I checked one of our local towns it had 65 men listed. And it is certainly a day for drugs, drinking, vandalism, and general mayhem. Don’t even get me started on the obscene costumes that will be worn by some people.
There are still parties and school carnivals and even church-sponsored events for children. They get to dress up and play games and eat too many sweets. But don’t most of them get to do that every week if they want? And do we really need all this hoopla in order to give kids free candy?
I know children and adults love to have fun. However, it still seems a bit silly to make such a big deal out of one day on the calendar when most people have no idea what it is we are celebrating. Maybe I’m just getting old. I will certainly make some Halloween crafts with my students and enjoy their stories, but I can’t wait for the 31st to behind us.