I’m a happy Halloweener, meaning I’m okay with the fun, wholesome aspects of the holiday. I love seeing a little girl (or several) dressed as Elsa from “Frozen” and all the Batman and Superman imitators. I love the smiles on children’s faces when you guess who they are pretending to be—and I understand that it’s fun to be someone you aren’t for a couple of hours. It’s also fun to come home with a bag of candy—especially the chocolate morsels!
Otherwise, I really don’t care for Halloween.
The basis for my dislike is that evil gets plenty of publicity on the nightly news without our dedicating a holiday to it. The world seems to get scarier by the minute, and it seems no excuse is necessary for people to behave horribly and terrorize others. So no, I don’t like the creepy, spooky, demonic aspects of this holiday.
Yes, I know it has deep-seeded roots, all the way back to a Celtic festival. And I know it was once known as All Hallows Eve, the night before the religious observance of All Saints Day, a reverent remembrance of the dead and the saints who have gone before us. And who doesn’t applaud the optimism of Charlie Brown waiting for the Giant Pumpkin to arrive?
However, the reverence is mostly gone, the Giant Pumpkin hasn’t shown up, and it says something about our society that Halloween is now the second largest revenue producing holiday—just barely behind Christmas. How must that make Thanksgiving and Valentine’s Day feel? Gratitude and love aren’t as important as jack-o-lanterns, spider webs, and haunted houses?
So I wish my readers a HAPPY Halloween. No witches, walking dead people, zombies, chainsaw murderers and the like. No maligning or torturing of black cats. Just a chance to build community by giving some safely packaged candy to your neighbor kids and by connecting with their parents in a positive way. And finally, a feeling of relief when you turn out the lights and head to bed to rest up for the next holiday that might scare the socks off you. Election Day!