Can It Get Any Scarier?

Illustration by Jordan Polk

Commentary by Jordan Polk, Democracy & Me intern

Halloween 2020 is here. My question: Can it get any scarier?

Can it get any scarier,

when we already have evil clowns peppered throughout our political system?

Can it get any scarier,

when the people in charge are already wearing metaphorical masks, ready to deliver tricks rather than treats?

Can it get any scarier,

when our so-called protectors are already blatantly getting away with murdering people of color, as if we are living in the Purge movie franchise?

Can it get any scarier,

when the world is already constantly on fire, burning hotter than the depths of underworld itself?

Can it get any scarier,

when, just like the Invisible Man, an imperceptible killer is already roaming the world, entering our lungs and stealing away our loved ones?

Can it get any scarier,

when there have already been a series of deadly explosions, killer earthquakes, locust swarms, and other disastrous events of Biblical proportions?

Can it get any scarier, when the fate of the United States, and the world as we know it, already seems to rest in the balance?

Halloween is always on October 31; however, depending on the results of the election, November 3 might actually be more frightening.

Truly, can it get any scarier?

In 2020, the fear does not only last for one night. The masks do not come off. We do not simply get to go home and hide away from all of the horror—because this year, all our homes are haunted, and so are the houses of government. We are being governed by ghosts: pale white, ghoulish-looking men who existed more than two centuries ago, judging from beyond the grave, following the same outdated rules.

The state of the United States is in jeopardy, and, sadly, there is no Alex Trebek to walk us through each of the problems. I mean, technically there is an Alex Trebek; however, he was born in Canada, has no political experience, and, therefore, cannot become U.S. President. So, we need a different host. We need someone to lead us in the right direction. We need to be led towards equality, towards environmental consciousness, towards good health, towards honesty, and towards justice. We need to work towards what is moral and what is for the greater good of everyone, rather than only considering the interests of the top 1 percent.

We need to have some human decency, some compassion for others. We need to be able to step out of our garments and put on those of another, in the name of empathy. Isn’t that a Halloween tradition, pretending to be someone or something else? However, do not get it twisted, this is not an invitation to put on a racially insensitive costume, or to begin appropriating cultures this Halloween—this is simply a metaphor. People who still consciously wear insensitive costumes in the year 2020, have just as much brainpower as the Headless Horseman (I will let you do the math on that one).

Just because things seem grim, does not mean that all hope is lost. With a little bit of compassion, a vote for the better candidate, and the reformation of the system that governs us, we can still come out on top. Those that are villainous never win. One way or another, they always meet their fate. Jason Voorhees was chopped in the face with a machete, blown to bits by the FBI, and demolished with a rocket launcher. A rocket launcher is likely pretty hard to come by, additionally, violence is never the answer; so, let your voice be your weapon, your metaphorical rocket launcher.

Cast your vote if you have not yet. Unfortunately, it is too late to send your absentee ballot through the mail, instead, drop your ballot off at an election drop box, or vote in person. Even after you have voted, do not stop working towards peace, love, and positivity. If you can, get involved with your government on a local level, share with others about what you think is right, educate those around you, and elevate yourself above the atrocities that we see every day.

So, can it get any scarier?

Yes. Yes it can. But, more importantly, it can get better as well. The world feels like a feverish nightmare right now, but we are not on Elm Street. Freddy Krueger does not call the shots here, instead, we do. We have the potential to change the world.


Vote, get involved, spread kindness, spread knowledge, and have a safe and happy Halloween.

-Jordan Polk

Illustration by Jordan Polk

1 Comment

  1. Very intuitive, deep thinking. The writing is excellent – that of a scholar. Thank you, Jordan. My hope is that many, many Americans would read this with an open mind and an open heart.

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