Halloween parties are banned in Puyallup, Washington schools this year. The superintendent says parties and parades waste class time and pressure families who can’t afford costumes. Also, Halloween is offensive to witches.
“Witches with pointy noses and things like that are not respective symbols of the Wiccan religion and so we want to be respectful of that,” said (spokesperson Karen) Hansen.
The Wiccan, or Pagan, religion is growing in the U.S. and there are Wiccan groups in Puyallup.
Number eight on the district’s guidelines related to holidays and celebrations reads as follows: “Use of derogatory stereotypes is prohibited, such as the traditional image of a witch, which is offensive to members of the Wiccan religion.”
A district e-mail warns administrators not to tolerate images of “Witches on flying brooms, stirring cauldrons, casting spells, or with long noses and pointed hats) and instead address them as you would hurtful stereotypes of any other minority.”
There’s a long folk history warning of the evil consequences of offending witches. Watch out for those fairy godmothers too.