Happy Hallowe’en?

Hallowe’en. Oh joy oh rapture.

What I dislike most about Hallowe’en is the whole idea of “trick or treat”ing. If people want to go around dressed as ghosts and skeletons then fair enough, that’s their choice. Actually, in this day and age they wouldn’t really stand out as being particularly oddly dressed. What I do object to, though, is children banging on the door demanding sweets or small change or whatever, threatening to play a trick on you if you refuse.

You see this sort of thing at other times of the year, only then they call it demanding money with menaces, or blackmail. According to section 21(1) of the Theft Act 1968:

“A person is guilty of blackmail if, with a view to gain for himself or another or with intent to cause loss to another, he makes any unwarranted demand with menaces; and for this purpose a demand with menaces is unwarranted.”

All sounds rather familiar, doesn’t it? You can get 14 years for it in the real world.

Given that levels of crime are rising all the time, and youth crime is of particular concern, it really makes you wonder if this is the right example to be setting the youth of today.

Still, at least you can opt out of it if you want. Keeping buckets of water by the door to throw over people is generally considered unacceptable these days, but you can at least get “No trick or treat” door stickers (although why they have to say “Sorry, no trick or treat” I don’t know; I for one aren’t sorry in the least).

Happy Hallowe’en to you all. Was that a knock on the door?


About Andrew Chell

Administrator for the WEA in Burslem. Fair Trade promoter. Occasional quiz champion.
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