As for Trick or Treating, a lot of places now have major Halloween Carnivals to supplement or, in a lot of places, replace the traditional door to door begging for candy. Where I live, we have both. The carnival followed by Trick or Treating in our building and buildings in the neighborhood. The kids make off like bandits. This picture is the pile one of my kids came home with. Hot Damn.
The major difference between now and then is the complete lack of fear we, and our children, have on Halloween. Is today really safer or have we been lulled into a false sense of security?
This was the scene in the 70s:
Mom - "Don't you eat one piece of candy until you come home and your father and I can go through it all. Do you understand me?
Us kids - "Yes Mom."
So, why did mom and dad need to go through the candy? To make sure no one had put pins, needles, razor blades or broken glass in them. Seriously. We went on the hunt for candy, hoping to score serious chocolate but afraid one bite could gut us from the inside. Nice innocent fun.
Those days are long gone. Even if I wanted to go through all my kids candy, it would take me a day. And the reality is we don't let our kids go at it with that candy bag like our parents did. We dole it out, one piece at a time. They will never eat it all. I will probably eat more of it than they do.
But as I stood in awe of that staggering amount of candy my kids brought home, I realized that those people who want to do harm to my children have figured out a much more subtle and insidious way to achieve their goals. Instead of pins and needles and razor blades, they have corn syrup, caffeine and Red Dye 40. They are taking the slow, patient route. But I am onto them and I am willing to sacrifice myself for their safety. I think I will start with a Butterfinger.