This week I’m doing a special 5-part series related to spooky Halloween-related myths.
Today’s myth: Halloween.
There are several myths related to Halloween.
Friends and parents used to tell me tales of razorblades in apples, poison in homemade goods, needle marks in store-bought candy, etc etc. Thanks, you really made my Halloween fun and not at all scary and paranoid. Tales of poisoning are urban legends. Although some assholes in rare cases have tried poisoning, in general people are safe to eat their goods on Halloween as publicized cases were found out to have been targeted at specific victims. It’s rare that someone will be malevolent enough to commit such a random act of violence and at the same time be ok with being unable to witness the pay-off (as the victims will have been long gone before eating the candy).
However, there are documented cases of pins, needles, and razors in Halloween food. Although cutting up ones mouth is painful, it is a mere annoyance compared to death by poisoning. Should the sharp object enter the GI tract, though, it could cause some life-threatening damage. As these are solid objects, there are precautions that can prevent harm such as breaking the food into smaller pieces before eating or slicing into fruit rather than taking a bite. So although it is possible that this could occur, the chances are remote and injury is preventable with a cursory examination of the food. No need to be so anxious as to avoid Halloween festivities altogether.
A few hours of web research on crime statistics brought me nothing. Perhaps someone with better searching skills can update me on this, but I was unable to find misdemeanor (or any other) crimes broken down by month and could not find individual Halloween statistics that weren’t from “concerned parent” type blogs. So I was unable to conclusively determine if there is an actual peak in crime on Halloween, as parental convention has it. I would be very grateful for this information if anyone has it. There may be an increased likelihood of mischief (toilet papering, egging, broken jack-o-lanterns, etc), but these events are certainly nothing to be concerned about — annoyed, maybe, but not concerned. In the case of crime, however, I was unable to determine if there was anything to justify people’s paranoia that criminals (actual criminals committing actual crimes) will be about on Halloween more so than any other night.
Don’t worry, they’re just costumes.
I already covered witches. Weird doesn’t necessarily mean bad, scary, or evil.
In general, Halloween is a night for fun, candy, and hi-jinks. Sure there might be some dicks out there, but in general people are just out for a good time. So there appears to be no need to be any more vigilant on Halloween than any other night (unless I find crime statistics to tell me otherwise — in which case, I will update). However, I suspect that the same precautions on Halloween as any other night (walk home with a friend, etc) will go a long way in being more safe without having to increase general paranoia and spoil everyone’s fun.
Drink in moderation, folks!
Thanks for reading my Halloween special series!
UPDATE: Please see comments section for more information.