TO MANY of us, Halloween does not have any place in Australia. The other view, however, is it is some harmless fun for children which does not create any issues.
Supporters don’t care about its origins. They see it as a fun activity and not a festival event of any significance. But Halloween is not just about trick or treat and ghostly dressing-up.
Its American background, however, is the sticking point for some. Australia is not America, so why should we follow suit?
Australians remain divided about the merit of Halloween and opinions are widespread, especially on October 31 when unsuspecting households are visited by children walking the streets at night.
Its growing popularity in Australia among children can be blamed on the television networks.
Halloween specials or TV programs featuring the event are commonplace. That’s one of the downsides of American TV shows.
Even this week some television stations have been promoting Halloween packages to coincide with October 31 and the November 1 All Saints’ Day which forms part of the foundation.
Pushing along the Halloween theme are some retailers who have identified the event as a sales opportunity.
Supermarkets and department stores have Halloween displays to entice children and parents into buying costumes and other garb.
Unfortunately, it appears as if the Halloween bandwagon has run away and it looks set to gain a bigger foothold in Australian culture. Participation looks to be growing every year.
Sadly, apart from Australia Day and the religious festivals of Easter and Christmas, many of our major retailers see no merit in promoting other days of significance in Australia because they lack commercial opportunity.
As a consequence we are stuck with Halloween. Will Australia have a Thanksgiving event next? Let’s hope not.
There is plenty to celebrate about Australia. Halloween’s growing popularity also highlights the heavy influence TV has over the lives of young people.