Dear Urban Diplomat: My sister wants my child to sport a Stephen Harper costume for Halloween

Dear Urban Diplomat: My sister wants my child to sport a Stephen Harper costume for Halloween

Urban Diplomat

Dear Urban Diplomat,
My sister made my toddler a Stephen Harper costume for Halloween (sweater vest, grey toupée, tiny trousers). She thinks it’s hilarious, but I think it’s wrong to dress kids up in costumes that only amuse adults. She’ll be joining us for trick-or-treating; how can I tell her my son will be wearing a Pokémon costume instead of her creation?
—Tricks Are for Kids, UPPER BEACH

Dressing children in inappropriately adult outfits is half the fun of parenting in the age of irony. That said, there is something mildly exploitative about using your son to make a political joke. But don’t even bring that up with your sister. Simply explain that you want the evening to be magical for your son, so you’re letting him choose his own costume. (It’s hard to argue against childhood wonder—not to mention toddler tantrums.) When the candy collecting is done, it wouldn’t kill you to put him in the prime ministerial getup and maybe plop him at the piano for a brief photo op. Lord knows that’s as long as he’ll tolerate a wig and a sweater vest.

(Images: Stephen Harper, by Half my Dad’s age, the Torontolife.com Flickr Pool; Halloween by vdrg dansschool)

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