Recently on Facebook, I came across a ridiculous post warning parents about dressing their children up for Halloween. The photo shared was of children in Halloween costumes labeled as offensive.
The costumes included: a Native American labeled as “racist,” a soldier labeled as “promoting violence,” a police officer labeled as “objectifying,” a superhero labeled as an “ableist,” a princess labeled as “sexist” and a pirate labeled as “promoting rape culture.”
The post was labeled “no candy for bigoted children” and asked parents that had kids dressed in these costumes to remove themselves from the property. I truly cannot believe some people have the nerve to post warnings like this on the internet.
The post by “Gaia’s Dancing Indigo Children: Intergalactic,” read, “Dear parents, please teach your annoying little s–ts to be sensitive to others. Halloween should be fun for everyone and no one should be confronted with costumes that are comprised of microaggressions and cultural appropriation. If your children trigger others by knocking on their door and dehumanizing them, expect legal action.”
First of all, the Facebook group that posted this is a group that publicly voices their opinions about Donald Trump and how they disagree with his racist and derogatory comments. So to post this “warning,” they are contradicting themselves on a whole other level.
Who are they to tell children they can’t dress up as their favorite princess? Some kids dress up as their parents, or what they want to be when they grow up. Mommy might be a police officer and daddy might be in the military. This group has no right to judge other children by a costume, nor do they have the right to judge their parents for dressing these children up in these costumes. Most of the time children won’t go out on Halloween if they don’t like their costume. It’s usually children that choose their costumes, not their parents.
Second, I’m pretty sure these children don’t pick out their costumes thinking, “I’m going to degrade a police officer to the status of a mere object.” Also, calling a princess costume sexist is a judge of character because boys have the same opportunity to wear a princess costume as girls do.
The world is changing. Girls and boys have the same opportunities to dress up for Halloween; it just depends on their idea of a gender role as well as their parents’ views. If “Halloween should be fun for everyone,” why are you taking away the fun?
By saying these costumes are objectifying, racist and promoting rape culture, you are teaching children at a very young age that they are restricted. Personally, I didn’t learn about rape culture until I was 20 years old and in a Women’s and Gender Studies class.
We should not be teaching little boys that being a pirate for Halloween means they’re probably going to grow up a rapist. It is completely outrageous to give this type of “warning” to children and parents on Halloween.
It makes me sad that if I have a child, he or she will grow up in a world where everyone is “triggered.” If you think you’ll be triggered by a TV show, don’t watch it. Don’t listen to the radio if you’re sensitive to a current event. Whether it is a television show, a song lyric, or a Halloween costume, everyone has the ability to control what they see or hear. Don’t send your child out on Halloween if the majority of popular children’s costumes are going to trigger your emotions.
MacKenzie Clarke can be contacted at email@example.com