This year for Halloween Annie and I sat on our front porch wearing masks. We stared straight ahead and didn’t move. (You’ve never seen a fiercer pregnant goblin than Annie, trust me.) Anyhow, we had a big ol’ dish of candy between us and we were enjoying the holiday, discussing how next year we’d have a little demon to dress up. More than one kid hesitated before approaching us. Some, in fact, skipped our house altogether, leaving more candy for us. Still, most came and took a couple of handfuls.
The evening was a success.
A couple of days later while making my internet rounds, I came across this post about fair trade chocolate. A lot of cocoa comes from Africa and is processed in less than great conditions. As someone who recently started to pay close attention to this kind of thing, I was thankful for the knowledge. But I wasn’t sure how I felt about the movement to spread it – reverse trick-or-treating.
When you reverse t-o-t instead of getting candy, you pass out fair trade chocolate, a flier about it, and give a little talk about why it’s important. This sounds simple enough, but I thought about Annie and I sitting on our porch, enjoying the holiday. What if a little Yoda came up to us, told us our Kit Kats were supporting slave-like conditions in the cocoa industry, did not accept our candy, and handed us a piece of free trade chocolate?
I suppose we’d be more open than most people to this, but I’m not sure we wouldn’t have been a little put off by the lecture. Such movements need to be a little more socially practical and a little less holier than thou.