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Fearless Philosophy For Free Minds: Fearless Philosophy Flashback: Sorry Kids, Halloween is Evil

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Fearless Philosophy Flashback: Sorry Kids, Halloween is Evil

Originally posted on 10/31/05

Since when did parents become so uptight when it comes to celebrating holidays at school? I can remember when I was growing up that every Halloween all the kids dressed up and we held a costume parade either in the gym or outside. We got to wear hats and masks and face paint for the whole day. The PTA used to make a haunted house at the school. I thought it was bad enough that when my oldest son was in Kindergarten, their costumes were limited to fairy tale characters, nothing scary.

Then when my youngest son was in Kindergarten, he had to dress up as a character from their Zoo Phonics. Okay, fine, I can live with that, but down the hall where his brother was in first grade; his teacher didn’t believe in Halloween, this = no party, no dressing up. That whole class was left out while other classes had a little party and a costume parade through the school. Now, if you are lucky enough to get to have a class party, you don’t get to have it until the last 30-45 minutes of the day.

It seems these days all it takes is for one parent to complain that it goes against their beliefs and if the school celebrates, their child will not come to school that day. At my kid’s school, their party is at the end of the day, no masks, no face paint, and no weapons. The school district has even officially banned the word 'Halloween' and replaced it with 'Fall Festival' or something P.C. like that. Some people believe that for kids who don’t celebrate they will be left out or made fun of for not dressing up. Why can’t the child go home before the party starts, or send them to the library or something? I understand not having the masks or weapons, but some of these schools excuses are so absurd that it leaves me shaking my head in disbelief.

At Underwood Elementary School in Boston, the principle has canceled Halloween celebrations because of parents threatening to keep their kids home that day. Why make a whole school stop a tradition because of a handful of students? This next excuse made me laugh, in the school district of Puyallup in Seattle; Superintendent Tony Apostle announces they have banned celebrations for fear of offending Wiccans. What? "Building administrators should not tolerate such inappropriate stereotyping (images such as witches on flying brooms, stirring caldrons, casting spells, or with long noses and pointed hats)," Apostle's memo states. Fine, don’t let them dress up like witches then, end of problem. When was the last time you heard a ghost complain of being improperly represented by a kid in a bed sheet with eye holes?

In Kingsport, a Christian Evangelist Mark Poff says:

I believe it [Halloween] is a major trick of the devil. The enemy wants to make us think that these things are all right, when in fact, you give somebody Like the devil an inch, he's going to invade your mind and spirit. This kind of activity is dangerous.
Man, what a buzz kill. Since when did dressing up like a super hero, giant sponge, or a princess become dangerous? I know several churches (and there are many) in my area are having festivities of their own. Some churches are having participants give out candy from the trunks of their cars, and they are encouraged to decorate said trunk.

For one thing, the origin of Halloween has nothing to do with the occult or the devil. It started out as a blend from October 31st into November 1st where the Celts believed the spirits of the dead roamed the earth, at this point in time the celebration was referred to as Samhain. I found some interesting facts about how Samhain evolved to the holiday we know as Halloween on the History Channel website.

My point to this whole thing is, let the kids have their little harmless parties, let them have their candy and let them be someone else for a night. Some say that it takes away from learning time. Please! Come up with something better than that. How many times were you required to attend an assembly in elementary school where a guy knows how to use a yo-yo really, or Junior High to see the Harlem Globe Trotter wannabes, or High School as you are dragged from class to have a pep rally for the football team? I seriously doubt that taking less than an hour away from these kids is going to set them back any. What’s next; take away their recess? Oh wait that has already happened in some schools. Maybe we should all just live in seclusion so as not to offend anyone.

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