Saturday, October 31, 2009

Political Spooktacle

Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays. It comes the day after my birthday, so as a child my birthday parties always had ghoulish themes, and as a punk rock teenager celebrating Halloween was associated with the best of the Los Angeles music scene, West Hollywood costume contests, and festivities for Dia de los Muertos.

But, thanks to the Christian right, it would be difficult to tell that the nation was celebrating Halloween from government websites. Even though the Obamas have two Trick or Treat aged youngsters, you wouldn't know it from the White House website.

There were a few exceptions, however. The Library of Congress could acknowledge the holiday as part of American folklore. Other government agencies used the scare tactics of the holiday as an opportunity for risk communication. The Centers for Disease Control has put out some Halloween Safety Tips on its website, and you can even send out seasonal e-cards about Halloween heath with the Halloween Germ Monster. The Consumer Protect Safety Commission has some information about Halloween Safety as well.

Only the NASA website seem to revel in the subversiveness of the holiday and its association with lunar beauty and interplanetary travel. Visitors to their website can enjoy Spooky Space Sounds as well.

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