My oldest foster son and I are waiting in the pediatric dentist’s office with other parents and children under the age of ten. In the waiting room is a big screen TV playing the Disney channel. The episode being aired is Halloween themed. It’s Disney, right? It’s innocent.
Or I hoped it would be.
I am face planted in church work, so I miss the title of this episode. Even when I’m working however, the plot is very clear. Very young heroines Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck are in training to be witches. Witches.
Oh, how cute, right?
The plot develops. Daisy isn’t going to make the grade to advance. She steals the teacher’s magic wand in pursuit of power to prove herself worthy of passing this test. Trouble ensues.
I get that Disney has to create many, many plots. I get that Halloween is material for episodes. I get that Disney is not a Christian-based company. I also get that if any program is off-putting in any way, I have choices. We didn’t have to sit in those particular chairs.
“What’s the deal with cute little witches? There is no harm, really.” You’ve heard this. You may have even said this.
You may even suggest something like, “No undercurrent messaging is happening. Sure, there is some mishap, maybe a little mischievousness. But it is in the name of fun. Innocent fun.”
I don’t buy this.
This episode—and a hundred others like it—clearly does something that frightens me. It indoctrinates into our culture and, more specifically, our young children the evil of Halloween.
“Oh,” someone is saying. “There’s nothing wrong with kid stuff Halloween.”
There is a LOT wrong with kid stuff Halloween.
Kid stuff Halloween mixes with adult Halloween. Case and point. When my youngest foster daughter who is four sees seasonal gore on the front lawn of a house less than a mile from where we live, yeah, that’s wrong. That’s wrong on a thousand counts.
The lore of Halloween is that death is something we can somehow control. The projection is that while Halloween is supposed to be scary, it actually is not scary because all that death stuff just gets boxed up in early November and sent into storage for another year. Poof. Gone. Outta here. It’s not a big deal.
It is a big deal. We are saying the walking dead is okay. Blood is okay. Spooky is okay.
As Americans, we rightly cringe and mourn soldiers lost to war, but, as a whole, we will put death out on the front lawn for the month of October.
There is something wrong with that.
You have noticed this, too. Halloween displays are increasing each year. More gore. More guts.
Even if you are NOT a Christian, this is not a nation I know.
You should be scared. I am.
But then, too, I am not scared. I am walking through the valley of death (Psalm 23) with my brothers and sisters of faith. As Christians, there are teaching lessons through this literal hell on earth. My kids know there is Jesus, not walking dead. Jesus took eternal death away.
I pray your kids and grandkids know this, too.
I also pray for proactivists. Alternatives. We don’t have to do this. There are dozens of party planner moms and dads out there who can redirect this mess and make it the right message. Sure, buy the orange strings of lights to help overseas manufacturing companies produce more than holiday red and green lights, but with those orange “Halloween” lights, light our faith. Light our fun. Come on Christians. Celebrate light and life.