Sucking all the Fun out of Halloween

October 31, 2011

Multiple Pages
Sucking all the Fun out of Halloween

The Cultural Marxists are dressed as vampires this Halloween, baring their fangs and sucking the fun out of everything again. In their inimitably dictatorial and humor-free manner, they are sternly lecturing us as to which sort of costumes are “appropriate,” “acceptable,” and “cool,” and which ones are not.

Fear not—so long as you don’t don anything that could conceivably offend a nonwhite, a non-male, or a non-hetero, all is permitted. There’s nothing offensive if you dress as a war victim with half your face blown off, a leering pedophile pope in diapers, or a mutilated corpse with fake bloody intestines hanging out of your belly—but you will be reprimanded, harassed, and eternally ostracized from polite society if you dare to wear a poncho and sombrero if you aren’t Mexican.

A black college student in Ohio—who fancies herself constantly oppressed, demeaned, and suffocated from all sides by “white privilege” rather than, say, very privileged not to be living in Africa—has infected the cyberworld with yet another Guilt Virus by spearheading a poster campaign where pouting nonwhites hold pictures of “racist” Halloween costumes underneath the slogan, “WE’RE A CULTURE, NOT A COSTUME…THIS IS NOT WHO I AM, AND THIS IS NOT OKAY.” Funded by Ohio University and distributed by an organization called STARS—“Students Teaching Against Racism in Society”—the series of five posters depicts a mopey Asian girl holding a picture of a geisha costume, a disconsolate Muslim (or maybe Arab) with a photo of a dynamite-strapped camel jockey, a morose black female presenting an image of someone in blackface dressed as a “gangsta,” a weepy Mestizo clutching a printout of a person riding a stuffed-animal burro, and what I’m assuming is supposed to be a grievously offended “Native American” disapprovingly clasping hard-copy evidence of two palefaces dressed in warpaint and Injun headdress.

“The keening outrage is all so predictable, I fear my head might explode from yawning so hard.”

In every instance, I’d rather hang out with the tasteless douches in the “racist” getups than the sourpussed killjoys who are play-acting as if they’ve been stabbed in the heart.

On her blog, 24-year-old STARS president Sarah Williams approvingly quotes someone who paints “White people” with as broad a brush as Tom Sawyer was given to paint that fence:

White privilege isn’t like a knapsack…it is like a toy box. And White people will scream and cry and throw a tantrum if you so much as threaten to take away one of their toys. Racist and otherwise offensive Halloween costumes are one of the many toys that White people are used to playing with.

Williams, a political-science major who describes herself as an “Obama intern,” is following in the bold, noble, inane tradition of predecessors such as a watchdog organization that monitors “racist” costumes and a Washington City Paper scribe who in 2009 offered a helpful guide about “How to Inform a Friend Their Halloween Costume Is Racist.”

Such scowling crusaders are the spiritual brethren and sistren of Brooklyn City Councilman Charles Barron, who this year successfully screeched, clawed, and hollered to have a hanging dreadlocked effigy removed from public sight because it was “racist…reprehensible…horrific” and “not funny.” Similar faux outrages about Halloween noose imagery occurred this year in Michigan and Pennsylvania. Last year an Illinois man faced chest-beating censorious caterwauling after featuring a “hanging man” display on his lawn with a mask that was “grey with brown and red tones.” Without incident, he had displayed the same lynched mannequin for “several years,” only with a lighter-hued mask that he replaced after it melted in summer storage.

Not to be outdone or muscled out of the spotlight, angry feminists—pardon the redundancy—are wailing and gnashing their wolverine teeth about “slutty” costumes that objectify and sexualize women, as if having vaginas and self-identifying as “women” didn’t “sexualize” them in the first place. A writer for the charmingly titled Bitch magazine mixes anti-racism and anti-sexism into one big nauseating Dairy Queen Blizzard in an imbecilic screed that seems to imply that dressing as a “sexy squaw” forces Injun men to rape their women at astronomical rates. There is also righteous howling about a costume called “Anna Rexia” that makes sport of eating disorders and one called “Anita Sedative” that dares to imply that some women might be a little bit crazy.

The homos, bless their pink little candy Valentine hearts, haven’t been nearly so vocal as other grievance groups this Halloween, although there was a minor kerfluffle about a “Men’s Gay Costume Wig” that activists were able to shame the vendor into renaming a “Men’s 70’s Adult Star Costume Wig.”

The keening outrage is all so predictable, I fear my head might explode from yawning so hard. Thankfully, it reached what is perhaps an insurmountable pinnacle in 2004, when a school district in Washington State banned Halloween celebrations because witch costumes might offend the religious sensibilities of Wiccans.

What’s next—the abolition of jack-o-lanterns for being insensitive to men named Jack?

Celtic blood courses through my veins, but you won’t hear me bitching, whining, and writhing in fabricated pain about these non-Celtic ingrates’ bastardized appropriation and arrogant redefinition of Samhain. Is it too much to expect reciprocal courtesy and tolerance?


Back in the 1940s my mother and aunt dressed in blackface for Halloween, but I can’t recall them ever doing anything that caused a black person to suffer.

In the late 1960s when I was a kid—back when neighbors knew one another’s names and you could go door-to-door for only two blocks and come back with two pillowcases stuffed to the brim with candy—I dressed as Aunt Jemima and a “hippie” character in consecutive years. As mom smudged burnt cork on my face for the Aunt Jemima costume, I don’t recall harboring any sadistic or murderous ill will toward black people—for me, the humor came from the incongruity of a six-year-old white boy dressing as what was, before Oprah, the world’s most famous black woman.

The next year, my hippie costume consisted of flared pants, a paisley shirt, round sunglasses, a curly wig, and a “beard” fashioned of freeze-dried coffee crystals sprinkled atop a layer of smeared Vaseline. I still remember the sting I felt when I asked my mother what she’d do if I came home from school one day actually dressed like a hippie.

“I wouldn’t let you in the door,” she said.

I don’t feel she would have been as harsh and unforgiving if Aunt Jemima had come a-knocking.


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