There’s an ancient terror set out to corrupt America’s youth this Halloween and send them down a path toward delinquency, degeneracy and sin. 

No, it’s not satanic costumes, nor is it candy laced with fentanyl. It’s the work of a long-dead artist whose influence on our culture is as insidious and pervasive as the devil himself — Charles Schulz and his godless cartoon special It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown that are destroying the moral compass of America’s children, according to the internet’s most perpetually outraged parents.

 

Common Sense Media

Are they sure they didn't accidentally put on Inglorious Basterds?

What used to be a beloved cartoon classic has received some shockingly negative reviews on Common Sense Media, a platform that allows users to write reviews of TV shows, movies, video games, songs and even podcasts in order to help a worldwide network of parents assess the appropriateness of the content for underage viewers. God forbid some unsuspecting child stumbles upon a racy episode of This American Life.

Common Sense Media was founded in 2003 by Jim Steyer, a civil rights attorney and former professor at Stanford University who sought to create a contingency of parents and families who could proactively police the sort of media to which their children were being exposed in an early internet age when simply turning off the TV was no longer the end-all solution for banning smut from the house. Though the organization has educational and advocacy branches, it’s best known in the modern era as a platform for parental guidance reviews, in which the moral indignation of helicopter parents provides an endless source of entertainment.

Common Sense Media

How irresponsible of this commenter to not censor b****head

All of which brings us to the 1966 animated TV special It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, an amusing little jaunt through the Halloween activities of our favorite Peanuts characters. Lucy pulls the football away from Charlie at the last second. Charlie cuts too many eye holes in his costume. “I got a rock.” This special has everything you could ever want out of a silly seasonal cartoon. But according to the reviews on Common Sense Media, the portrayals of “horrible bullying and domestic violence” in the program where characters are “physically assaulted by manual strangulation” and even “use the word ‘kill’ in reference to a pumpkin” make this abhorrent abomination on par with Human Centipede in terms of its child-friendliness.

Common Sense Media

Not gonna argue about the horribleness of Lucy

Many parents point out the problematic nature of the language used in the special — most of the negative reviews take umbrage with the characters calling each other “stupid” or “blockhead,”  labelling their reviews with the “Too Much Swearing” mark of shame. “Too Violent” is another common complaint — the iconic scene where Snoopy dogfights with The Red Baron might as well have been the opening sequence of Saving Private Ryan, going off of these reviews.

The recurring theme through all of these thrashings of the beloved and benign cartoon is that parents all fondly remember the special from when they were children themselves, but now, as adults, they deem the trick-or-treating adventures of Charlie, Lucy and Pigpen as far too traumatizing for their little angels. Though we haven’t yet run FBI background checks on the Roger Eberts of CSM, it’s a fair assumption that none of these caterwaulers are drug dealers or mass-murderers. If they survived seeing Snoopy glide through the air on his doghouse like a beagle Blue Angel, then how exactly will It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown turn their kids into monsters? All we hear when they cry “war crimes” and “domestic violence” is Womp Womp womp Womp womp.

Besides, if there’s a single Peanuts character who could possibly traumatize a small child and cause irreparable damage, it’s got to be Al Roker.

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