Ah, Halloween, a wonderful tradition for children and a fond memory for adults across America. Who could forget the thrill of engaging in some light cosplay, the joy of visiting your neighbors and getting free candy, the inconsolable rage you feel when you wake up the next morning and find all of your candy thrown out by your mom?
Okay, that last part isn't usually part of Halloween, but it turns out it is for one Agnes Callard, a philosophy professor at the University of Chicago and capital-P Poster who is seemingly making a run at becoming today's Twitter Main Character by detailing the love and affection she received from her children when they discovered she hadn't thrown out all their Halloween candy, as is the apparent tradition in her household.
Dr. Callard's post left many readers gobsmacked, as few could imagine the sort of parent who would throw away a child's Halloween candy for no discernible reason.
In follow-up tweets, Callard wrote, "ppl who are morally outraged on behalf of my children: don't come crying to me when your children write boring memoirs called My Parents Were Always Nice" and "think of it as being like the opposite of Christmas morning, which fits cause we're Jewish."
While many found this tradition needlessly and self-evidently cruel, there have actually been some articles in parenting publications about why this is not a good thing for a parent to do. In fact, just a week prior to Callard's tweet, Parents.com posted an article about why parents should not toss their kids' Halloween candy, arguing, "Making their candy disappear won't teach your kids anything — except not to trust."
A similar sentiment was expressed by Twitter users, albeit in more hyperbolic and condemning terms.
obviously a lot of people dunking on this but sometimes i see a tweet that makes me stop dead in my tracks and i cant help but ask why? what could someone possibly gain by doing this? do you enjoy being mean to your kids? do you think this is some weird way to teach them a lesson https://t.co/6mNIx97lHz
— ian (also known for the flintstone flop) (@_phunkee) November 2, 2022
Every Christmas we immolate whichever present each child likes the most. This teaches them the valuable Stoic virtue of apatheia and will in no way result in them being malformed adults unable to form meaningful relationships with others. https://t.co/rCsJwcwDxj
— Dr. Jackets (@CheckettsLevi) November 2, 2022
For whatever disagreements I may have with my own mom I can always take solace in the fact that she loves me enough to never use me as an excuse to traumatize me and go on an ego fueled power trip. https://t.co/aZFFltQQPk
— ✪ The Thirteen Ghosts of Jonathan H. Gray ✪ (@jongraywb) November 2, 2022
Some compared Callard to Bean Dad, aka John Roderick, the infamous parent whose thread on forcing his daughter to figure out how to use a can opener on her own (a six-hour endeavor) generated controversy and brought to light some of his past racist jokes on the app. Similarly, Callard's tweet led posters to do a bit of research on her, where they purportedly discovered some wild stuff about her past.
First, those familiar with Callard reminisced about the time she openly crossed a picket line at the University of Chicago to teach her classes.
this woman who actively crossed the picket line at my old union’s strike is poised to be the next bean dad and I couldn’t be happier https://t.co/z9CBxt7dkX
— mrs columbo (@mernyferny) November 1, 2022
Others were able to discover a recent thread in the /r/UChicago subreddit that detailed why she was considered a controversial figure at the institution by some. There, a user explained that she divorced her husband, fellow UChicago professor Ben Callard, married one of her Ph.D. students named Arnold Brooks, then hosted a talk with her ex-husband on the "Philosophy of Divorce."
She once gave a talk at an undergrad conference on love, and as part of the talk mentioned that she fell in love for the first time a few months ago, while her husband who she had 3 kids with was in the audience. The person she fell in love with was a grad student in her dept. https://t.co/NVOrI6OZo5
— Leif Hancox-Li, PhD (@struthious) November 2, 2022
everybody already knows about the thread on r/uchicago but i was just informed that all her kids her ex-husband and her grad student lover all live together in the same house https://t.co/Dty6TzE3xu
— cosimo de'medici's live in yaoi artist (@malfeasances_) November 2, 2022
so crazy to post this knowing the outrage it will garner all while theres a semi-active thread on reddit about how you cheated on your husband with your phd student 😭 https://t.co/9cGTSYcpBu
— not real (@mitskiIeaks) November 2, 2022
On cancel culture, from before cancel culture (1990). pic.twitter.com/JQ8L6FoyPX
— Agnes Callard (@AgnesCallard) November 1, 2022