Growing up in the 1970s as part of a large family there were three times during the year when I could get candy: Easter, Christmas and Halloween.
Of these three holidays, Halloween was the best because the only limits placed on your ability to get candy was the speed of your run from door to door and your ability to carry a heavy sack filled with candy.
In this tradition, it is the quintessential American holiday. Any child can become wealthy beyond measure with a roaster pan filled with candy, providing you have the will to put in the time and effort. Well, you also need to be able to protect your candy from your siblings and your father. It’s never too early to learn about guarding your “stuff.”
In the small town where I grew up, my siblings and I could literally go from one end of town to the other on Halloween. It didn’t matter if October 31 was a Monday or a Saturday, we wolfed down our supper and headed out the door. As long as we were home by 9, we could gather as much candy as we could carry.
Times have changed since Richard Nixon was president. We have become more fearful about letting our children roam freely in our communities, in many cases for good reason. Today, if a child was able to amass the horde of candy I got back in the day, there’s no way they would get to eat it. Even nightfall has been delayed with the postponed return of Standard Time to the first weekend in November.
But it’s still a great time. Dressing up in costume is fun, being out in the crisp fall night air can be scary if you let your imagination go wild. My wife and I took our granddaughters out trick or treating last year and had a great time.
I’m waxing nostalgic about Halloween because my beloved holiday is under attack. Candy police? Political correctness? Nope, something even worse, in my opinion — laziness.
The Halloween & Costume Association initially wanted to move Halloween to the last Saturday of October, now they have decided to leave Halloween alone, but call for a National Trick or Treat Day on the last Saturday of October.
“While we still believe an end-of-October Saturday observance will promote safety and increase the fun, this year we will be launching a national initiative designed to enhance the Halloween that we all know and love,” an online petition says.
An article on the topic published by The Hill said “The association — a trade organization that serves as a nonprofit voice for businesses that manufacture, import and distribute Halloween products — argued in the petition that moving Halloween could be safer for parents and children who are trick-or-treating.
The group didn’t specify how moving Halloween to a weekend would solve issues related to injuries and parental supervision, though a number of municipalities already hold trick-or-treating events on days other than Halloween to avoid potential incidents.”
So yes, it’s a gimmick so you spend more money.
The petition organizers hope that the president will sign a decree to create the new holiday.
We all know that our nation has bigger fish to fry.
Leave Halloween where it is and give me those fun-size Snickers, and that popcorn ball…
As always, I welcome your comments. You can reach me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, telephone 715-268-8101 or write me at P.O. Box 424, Amery, WI, 54001.