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Local Column

Solari: Keep your government off my candy

There are certain things I like the government involved in.

They build fine roads when they have the money, maintain wonderful parks and recreational spaces, and its food inspection capabilities are top-notch.

Many top high schools and universities are public institutions, as well.

But there are some things where I want the government as far away as possible: Let me paint my home whatever color I want, raise my kids as Catholic or Jedi, and I’m going to distribute candy from my home in rain, sleet, snow or dark of night.

To begin with, Halloween is not a real holiday. At least not like Christmas or the Fourth of July. Banks are open, the mail gets delivered and everyone has to go to work that day if it doesn’t fall on a weekend.

So why do local governments feel the need to sanction the hours when kids can go dressed in costumes to ask for free candy from strangers?

It’s something that we have done for years, but, in a classic example of government overreach, now government wants to regulate it.

They shouldn’t. It is something beyond the reach of government.

Halloween is on Oct. 31, and has been for millenia. It goes back to when the Celts ruled Europe and people carved turnips because the pumpkin hadn’t been discovered yet.

Under different names
it predates many other
customs, including Christmas.

Trick-or-treating is a tradition that already self-governs.

The rules are unwritten, but understood: Don’t go to a home with the porch lights off, make at least a basic effort at a costume, an old pillowcase is always the best choice for carrying candy and if the bowl is left unattended, never take just one.

If I give money to charity, or volunteer my time for a good cause, I don’t have to check in with the city or county authorities.

I go do my good deed and feel good about it the rest of the day.

Rain, snow or cold, I’m giving out candy to the kids that take the time to go out, and no police statement or local council can stop me.

If they follow the rules that are already in place, why shouldn’t I?

They earned it.

There are bigger issues for my police and local government to worry about that policing a tradition that exists as good fun.

• Kevin Solari is managing editor of the Daily Chronicle. Reach him at 815-756-4841 ext. 2221, or email

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