Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Halloween is taken seriously around here

We're close to Salem, where witchcraft is a cottage industry and Halloween means Haunted Happenings one of the major tourist events of the year.

I have a distaste for this aspect of Salem. My ancestors were around at the time of the witch trials, on the side of the accused, and it wasn't such a fun-filled event for them.

Don't get me wrong - I like Halloween, costumes and candy are always fun. There's just a terrible irony that Salem's tourist industry is based on witchcraft. And what now is billed as good clean family fun was one of the darkest chapters in the history of our country. Innocent people's lives were damaged forever by the Salem witch trials. Some died horribly.

I try to be a good sport about this, but every year at this time I think about the tragic consequences of religious intolerance and superstition. And I wonder how far we have come since then. That's how the dead are with me on All Hallow's Even.

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