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Your Kid Isn’t Going to Die From Poisoned Halloween Candy. Chill Out

Welcome to Fall! It's Freak-Out-About-Halloween-Candy-Season, so, let's get real.

As summer becomes autumn, the leaves begin to change, there’s a chill in the air, and parents everywhere start losing their shit about Halloween candy. Will it be laced with meth? What about TCH? How about heroin? Gotta watch out for that smack-fueled candy corn, right? Since the dawn of our nation, Americans have worried that random strangers would poison their children with all sorts of contaminated candy, and now that it’s Fall, it’s time to get a grip. Historically, there are approximately zero instances of children dying from poisoned Halloween candy given to them by random strangers who knowingly wanted to poison kids via trick-or-treating.

If you have any parents in your Twitter feed, you’ve probably already started to see the madness set in, and now is a good reminder to ignore the crazy. According to multiple fact-checking sources, including Snopes, there aren’t any recorded instances in American of children being indiscriminately poisoned at Halloween. And the reason we believe this epidemic is omnipresent basically because of three incidents.

  • In 1974, Ronald Clark O’Bryan poisoned his son with a pixie-stick laced with cyanide. This evil father had taken out a life insurance policy on his kid and wanted to make it look random. (He even gave his other kids the same poison to make it seem random.)
  • In 1964 Helen Pfei handed-out ant-poison and dog biscuits in lieu of actual Halloween candy. However, she didn’t disguise the “tricks” and supposedly only handed out these “jokes” to older children. She was arrested anyway, and no one died.
  • In 1970, a 5-year-old died from a heroin overdose. At first, this looked like he had been hit with poisoned candy, but it turns it he found his parent’s drug stash, and, later, they tried to make it look like he’d eaten drug-spiked candy.

But, overall, academics, historians and sociologists have concluded that Halloween candy fears are just one of many urban myths parents fall prey to. Police have never really recorded instances of this happening.

And yet, there’s a very real possibility you’ve seen a tweet like this recently.

Now, if you read the above news story, which was retweeted this week (clearly as a de-bunking joke), you’ll find that it’s from 2017, and it claims that everyone in New Jersey was losing their shit because marijuana candy existed, and therefore, could be confused with regular candy. That is literally the entire story: marijuana candy looks like regular candy so, WATCH OUT. Again, police never have actually reported this kind of thing has happened.

So, there you have it. It’s Halloween, candy is happening, and the biggest threat to your child is something you may have heard of already. It’s called Sugar, and if you’re unaware of what it can do to children (remember Buster in Arrested Development?), you may want to seriously consider canceling this particular holiday.