So there I was, waiting while my usual cortado was being hand crafted at east Austin’s Cuvee Coffee yesterday, when I spied a fresh stack of Austin Chronicles menacing me from a nearby rack. Imagine my alarm when I realized I was staring down the business end of an AR (or some underpaid, ill-informed graphic artist’s representation thereof).
With Halloween almost upon us, the journalistic savants who produce the Chronicle had helpfully printed a handy-dandy mask on their cover for readers to use to frighten unassuming trick-or-treaters this year. It’s apparently a tradition for the
What spooky visage did they choose for this All Hallows’ Eve?
Following this month’s massacre in Las Vegas, in which 64-year-old Stephen Paddock unloaded a litany of guns on a festival crowd, killing 59 and injuring over 500 others, we could think of no image more representative of horror this Halloween season than the angry eyes of an armed white male peering at you through a gun’s scope. Here’s how you can be that guy.
Isn’t that thoughtful?
The Chronicle even provides helpful instructions on how to cut out the mask. Apparently their readership demographic needs a little remedial assistance where handling sharp objects is concerned.
1) Typically we recommend extracting the mask from the rest of this issue’s cover with a knife or scissors, but I suppose there’s no opportunity like the present to pull out your standard semi-automatic firearm and unload a few rounds along the dotted lines. Make sure to mind the scope. If you want to add your own bump stock, keep a little red space on the edge of the assault rifle and fill it in with a thick black Sharpie.
Thanks for that, but we don’t think readers will confuse anyone at the Chronicle for HL Mencken any time soon.
The times, however, they are a-changin’ and selecting a costume isn’t the simple matter it used to be. So be warned: blithely cutting out this year’s Chronicle mask and wearing it when you hand out candy could present a problem.
Keeping that in mind, could a white woman or an Asian man wear this year’s Chronicle mask without committing an act of cultural appropriation? You might not think so, but the Chronicle’s instruction page doesn’t address the topic, which seems rather insensitive to us. They do, however, close with this warning:
Remember, the gun is already part of the mask’s presentation. You don’t need to leave the house with your own. Please, please, don’t leave the house with your own.
They’ll have to pardon us if we don’t take that advice. But the question remains, given the tenor of the times and all of the potential pitfalls of costume selection this time of year, who will you dress as this Halloween?