Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween!

Today's commentary has to do with the trend toward using shopping malls for trick or treating. Like so much of what is bad with modern society, this practice on the surface seems so innocuous. It allows kids to stay warm and dry. It allows kids to round up tons of candy in a short amount of time. It is convenient for parents. And, most of all, it is SAFE - no pesky cars or child molesters lurking in the bushes. What comes across to many as a good idea actually is another nail in the coffin for civilized society. In effect, kids in a mall are like fish in a barrel for marketers. It allows them just another opportunity to prey on us - to convince us that what they are selling is something that we need. The traditional practice of trick or treating, which brings people living in the same neighborhood together through fun and tradition, is being replaced by a manufactured world.

By going to the mall to trick of treat, we pile in the SUV and pollute the air. By making it easy for kids to acquire a lot of candy in a small area, we promote lack of exercise and childhood obesity. By taking our kids out of the neighborhoods in which they live, we diminish the spirit of our communities. By supporting the retailers in the mall, we exacerbate the effects of consumerism and materialism on our children. When our children's children celebrate halloween, there will no longer be a choice. To trick or treat it will be necessary to hit the mall. Homeowners will no longer decorate their houses in scary attire to attract the neighborhood's little ghosts and goblins. A very sad day indeed.

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