It’s the end of October. Trick or Treaters will be out and about soon. There are bars and parties to hit or maybe if you’re not into that, you can celebrate at home by watching some Halloween specials. There’s just one problem. It’s a work day. Now, sure you can call in sick, but you shouldn’t need to.
Halloween is one of the biggest holidays celebrated in the US. It makes no sense to me why it shouldn’t be considered a federal holiday. Growing up, a lot of the time the holiday would end up falling on a day when I had school the following morning. It always seemed illogical to me that they expected us to be fully attentive when we were still trying to process the sugar crashes we got from last night’s candy haul.
Maybe it was their way of preparing us for hangovers later in life. Now, I do have some ideas as to why Halloween isn’t considered federal. One of those has to do with how Trick or Treating was back in the Great Depression days of the US. From what I’ve heard, trick or treating was used as a way of extorting goods from people who didn’t want to share. If that’s the case, I imagine that’s part fo the reason it’s not federally recognized.
It’s seen as a time of chaos and rebellion which has no place in our oh-so-polite society. Here’s the thing, though. Another holiday also exists in October. Unlike Halloween, this one is federal. It’s a little something known as Columbus Day which was less than a week ago as of this being posted.
Far be it from me to judge, but putting a holiday where the arrival of a man resulted in the death of numerous Natives over one where people simply want to cut loose while wearing costumes seems a tad hypocritical. Not to mention, Halloween coincides with that natural flame of rebellion we all have as humans. It’s an opportunity to let that part run loose for a bit without taking things too far. However, you can’t do that if you’re stuck behind a desk or counter. Then those feelings get bottled up and may end up showing themselves later in a bad way.
I have to warn I’m going to be talking about something that may be divisive among some. It’s the other reason, I think Halloween isn’t federal, religion. Before I go any further, I want to say there are two kinds of religious people to me which I will refer to as Group A and Group B. Group A, I don’t take much issue with you. Sure we may disagree on a few things, but at the end of the day you understand what you choose to practice only extends to you and you’re even lax on a lot of things.
In short, Group A is fine with Halloween. Onto Group B, who tend to be less tolerant. My issue with them is that they think because they have to follow a certain rule or whatever it means everyone else does too. I can’t help but feel that’s why the matter of federalizing Halloween doesn’t get brought up that much. They don’t want to think that Halloween which they associate with the devil (even though a lot of the origins predate Christianity) is as important as something like Christmas.
Group B, I know this is going to be hard to hear. Try to keep an open mind, The world doesn’t revolve around you. I know you think it does. I know that’s what your book or rather the person reading it to you drills into your heads.
Unfortunately, reality strongly disagrees with this notion. At the very least, could you leave the rest of us out of it? Facetiousness aside, my biggest issue with these people is that, unlike Group A, they can’t seem to grasp their beliefs only extend to them which turns into a major headache for the rest of us. I don’t want to get too sidetracked, however, so I’ll be moving on. Let’s grant my scenario.
Halloween has day off status right up there with Christmas and Thanksgiving. What would that look like? Well, the difference between it and other holidays is that it’s a lot more communal. I mean, you don’t typically hear of people going door-to-door to get goods during other holidays. Not only that, but in terms of celebrating, it also tends to be a lot more public whereas Christmas and Thanksgiving tend to be more intimate events.
With this in mind. we also need to consider the two kinds of people celebrating. First, you have your family-friendly events. This is your trick or treating, maybe attending some kind of festival. The most chaotic it gets some minor vandalism. Personally, while I was in school if I knew Halloween was a guanrtneed day off (and the day after just to anticipate the whole sugar crash thing) I would have slept in and stayed home marathoning scary movies.
Either that or I would be playing a game that’s horror-related. Theme parks would also probably be seeing way more traffic. As for the more mature side of the holiday, places like bars, movies showing horror, and concerts would most likely skyrocket in attendance. Would there be any downsides to what I want to do? There are only a couple I can think of.
The first would be more of a matter of inconvenience, people forgetting to buy candy until the last minute. Here’s the remedy to that. It’s called planning ahead. Yeah, I know it sucks, but I think it’s worse that cashiers have to be stuck behind registers for grueling hours because people don’t know how to write things down. Halloween candy is in stores as early as August.
You have plenty of time to buy a few bags and put them up until October 31st. Try to make them last until then. As for the other con, we would also in all likelihood see an increase in crime and injuries from people getting a bit too rowdy. While I do think this is a legitimate concern, another big part of Halloween is taking risks so people would just need to decide if it’s one that’s worth dealing with. I think you all know where I stand on that.
Above all else, people need more time off. They work way too many hours and go about their days constantly tense. Halloween would be the perfect holiday for them to release some of the pent-up aggression. I’m not saying Halloween needs to become the purge or anything like that. What I am saying is since it’s seen as a more rambunctious holiday, it would give more of an opportunity to get those feelings out.
I’ll end this with a question, if you knew you didn’t have to work/go to school on Halloween, how would you be celebrating it?