Halloween was the holiday that every kid dreamed about. All you had to do was to drape yourself in an old sheet (well, not so much in the South) or put a patch over your eye and the candy, FREE CANDY! would come pouring into that big plastic pumpkin bucket you clutched for blocks careful not to spill one morsel. All sorts of wonderful, sugary candies like SweetTarts or chocolatey minibites of Snickers or Krackles! The gooey-er and sugarier the better. All free for the knocking and taking. And all you had to do was shout "Trick or Treat"!
And your parents would let you do it! They would actually LET you go begging through the streets to score all the candy you could carry. You could go running through the neighborhood in gangs and groups and gaggles where, let me tell you, that kid-network worked faster than any internet does, to share the 4-1-1 on which house had the best (or worst) candy. It was glorious! Then when you finally dragged your loot home, there was one last hurdle before the fun really started. You know the procedure - dump all that wonderful sugary, chocolatey treasure on the table while Mom and Dad took out all to poisonous popcorn balls and the apples laced with razorblades. [I never personally saw an apple with razorblades, but my parents assured us that they existed] Then and ONLY then could you finally gorge yourself into a beautiful sugar-induced coma.
So what happened? It used to be so much fun. But lately, you can't swing a dead, black cat without getting ragged on by some prissy do-gooder.
First there's the administrators at University of Colorado Boulder and several other college campuses like Universtiy of Minnesota. LINK The "University Spokesperson" actually explained why dressing like cowboys would be offensive...
'When you dress up as a cowboy, and you have your sheriff badge on and a big cowboy hat, that's not a representation of a cowboy, that's not a representation of people who work on a ranch that's not a representation of people who live in the West, that's kind of a crude stereotype,' Hilliard said.Really? I wasn't aware that the CowPokes Of America were offended. They always seemed so self-assured and reasonable. I feel so bad now. I dressed like cowgirl with pink boots, fringed skirt and all once, and now I know that I was offending them. I am contrite. [I guess the Watergate Bug costume I wore in 1974 was okay 'cause that only insulted Nixon. Phew]
Then this is what one woman in North Dakota felt compelled to write to drop into all those little plastic pumpkin buckets in lieu of candy...LINK
You [sic] child is, in my opinion, moderately obese and should not be consuming sugar and treats to the extent of some children this Halloween season. My hope is that you will step up as a parent and ration candy this Halloween and not allow your child to continue these unhealthy eating habits.
She is exactly why flaming paper bags filled with dog poop were invented.
But then there is the Mom whose child suffers from Type 1 diabetes. She wanted him to be able to participate, so she bought a bunch of small toys and distributed them to her neighbors with a note attached that explained that her child could not eat candy, but when he knocks on the door, please give him this toy instead. And went on to explained how they could identify him. Now THAT'S a really cool Mom.