Halloween: The Dark Side

By Laura Colantonio, Trending Editor

Halloween is a holiday that many people of all ages enjoy celebrating. It is an excuse to see friends and exercise traditions such as carving pumpkins, “bobbing for apples”, dressing up as the scariest of monsters, and most importantly, collecting candy from house to house. Although usually associated with the smiling faces of children, Halloween festivities are often taken too far.

The traditional pranks such as covering a house in toilet paper or jumping at people when they least expect it are still harmless and have become a norm as part of the way to participate in Halloween. It is those that take the pranks to extreme who cause issues.

For the past 20 years, LaRethia Haddon has pulled the same Halloween season prank at her home, located on a busy road in Detroit; she uses a realistic dummy to scare people. This year, Haddon went a bit too far with this prank by placing the dummy on her front lawn, lying face down in the dirt.  The dummy appears to be an injured person. This has come across to many as funny, but to others as inappropriate. Despite being legal, because it is within her property and not harming anyone, the police received many calls from concerned civilians.

With the Halloween season comes a great deal of superstition and fear. This has been taken to the next level this year. On A&E airs a live television psychological experiment on October 26th at 8:00 PM, “Fear: Buried Alive”, where three people are being buried 6 feet under in sealed coffins. Even though this is all to overcome fear, this is a huge risk for those people participating and is seasonal fright taken to a ridiculous level.

Superstition, even sometimes at less extreme levels, is very common. It adds to the realism of the holiday to a certain extent, but this can also contribute to why many people do not want to leave their homes on Halloween night.

In addition to those taking Halloween too far, there is another negative that comes with the holiday. This is known to dentists and parents as “trick-or-treat tooth decay”. Children collect an overload of candy on the holiday and by eating so much at once, it puts them at risk for cavities.

Halloween has its wonderful qualities, but even with all of the excitement of it, there are measures that are taken which are not so great to get an extra laugh or to overcome fear.

A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, October 20th print edition.

Contact Laura at


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