HALLOWEEN; A SENSELESS EXCUSE TO EAT CANDY AAccording to the US Department of the Census, Halloween was first celebrated in
America in , in 1921. Since the origin of the holiday is the Celtic festival Samhain, dating from before the birth of Christ, this is it is not an American tradition in any way. Anoka, Minnesota
Samhain was the feast for the Lord of the Dead. It was celebrated on October 31st because that is the day that the spirits of dead ancestors were believed to return to earth. By 800 AD, Christianity had spread to
where it had an influence on the region’s traditions. The Pope wanted to rid Ireland of pagan festivals, so the name of Samhain was changed to Eve of the Holy — hallow being holy— because Nov. 1 was All Saint’s Day. Around the year 1000, the Catholic Church declared Nov. 2 All Soul’s Day, a holiday for honoring and praying for the dead. Ireland
People wore masks because they believed all these dead souls were wondering the earth that night and they wanted to disguise themselves so the spirits would think they were part of that group. There is all sorts of other blah, blah historical info I could impart of how the begging for “soul cakes” turned into begging for candy, but I won’t bore you with more facts or disputed facts. The bottom line is that Halloween is just a senseless excuse for children to eat candy.
Being a fat kid, I salivated and dreamed as October 31st approached. Since I was a sneak candy eater, this holiday gave me an excuse to openly devour as much chocolate as I could. I grew up in a suburb of
in an era when one could still walk door to door in the neighborhood and collect as mush booty as possible with no fear of poison having been injected in your taffy apple. New York
Times have changed and parents can no longer allow their children to trick or treat door to door. In Google if you type in the phrase, “Halloween Safety Tips,” you get 67 million matches. One of the scariest and saddest tips I found was—“Make a map of your Trick-or-Treat route and check the route against the sex offender database.”
When a holiday’s commemoration includes a tip about sex offenders it’s not much of a celebration anymore.
I might sound like an old curmudgeon being so negative about a day that so many other people enjoy celebrating, but at least let us have some honesty in why we enjoy October 31st. It has nothing to do with honoring dead souls; it’s all about the candy.