I belong to a neighborhood Listserv in Washington, DC. The following email was sent around to members this morning, accompanied by a surveillance video titled, Greedy Halloween Kids.

“We put a large bowl of candy out last night for Halloween so we could take our 6-year daughter around for trick or treating. Less than an hour later a pair of kids showed up with a large backpack and emptied the entire bowl. If you recognize the kids in this video link below, please let them know they are not welcomed on Garrison St next year.”

I was horrified when I read that post – it’s just plain mean.

The children in the video, who appear to be around 9 or 10 years old, were clearly alone on Halloween night. Why? Perhaps there was some calamity at home? Perhaps their parents aren’t involved? In any case, they did what children do before they are fully-grown.

But to have a neighbor embarrass them and their parents by posting video footage of them taking more candy than they should have, to me, is worse than what the children did.

It’s not nice.

Americans have become so quick to condemn, instead of lend a hand. It’s almost as if being mean has become a virtue. A competition for who can be the most intellectually savvy with biting words.

The Listserv originates in a neighborhood of mostly Bleeding Heart Liberals. However, the person who would post such a thing is not any kind of Liberal that I resonate with.

The same is true for Democrats. When Funk was mayor, I switched from being a lifelong Democrat to being an Independent. Because once I was privy to the Democratic Party from the inside, once I saw how politics really went down, I could no longer recognize myself in that group.

I would love it if Americans would go back to erring on the side of being kind, instead of getting off on looking righteous in the eyes of our neighbors.

As always, I gotta end on a happy note! The picture is of me standing outside “the sump.” A sump is a very deep and large rainwater catchment basin – every neighborhood where I grew up had one. Long Island being flat and kids being ingenious, the sump is where children went sledding in wintertime, and where teenagers went to get away from our parents all year-round.

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