Instead of saying trick or treat, it would be a kinder and gentler act to have your child say "blessing for treat," or "prayer and blessing, for treat." Or a more secular, "peace be with you for treat." Nobody wants a trick to be played on his or her residence, when tricks too often turn into damaged property, poisoned dog food, and home invasion robberies.
At least my parents taught me to say "blessing for treat" on Halloween instead of 'trick' or treat, and that was back in 1946. Sixty-five years ago the neighbors knew most of us kids on the block.
It's so frightening to see tall teens and even adults in scary masks and costumes show up in the dark on your porch only to screech, "trick or treat" in your face as you hand out sugar-laden candies or cans of soda pop, not to small children, but often to tall teenagers and adult parents dressed in costume. Sometimes it's people pouring out of Halloween parties, usually young adults, and often drunk or otherwise inebriated spitting and slurring "trick or treat" in your face....Quite a scare for the residents of dark streets.
Halloween is better spent at shopping mall parties for children and their families to show off their costumes, having creative hand-made costume contents, and even pets dressed up in costumes. The kindergarten age kids with their 9-year old siblings showing up at neighbors' homes for safe, wrapped candies has given way in many areas to adults or teenagers knocking at your door shouting "trick or treat."
Whether you're religious or not, if someone shows up at the door on Halloween, a lot of Sacramentans would rather see parents teach their children to sweetly say, "blessing or treat," or "prayer and treat," or something similar showing one random act of kindness for another in exchange for a warm feeling of have given a gift of a smile and a brightness into the lives of many on this all hallows eve.
In some countries you have very old people showing up, knocking on neighbor's doors saying, "blessing and treat," or "prayer for you and treat." What it means is that very hungry senior citizens who normally stand in line for free food from church food bank pantries sometimes show up at their neighbor's homes with baskets--either to receive food in exchange for a one-minute prayer each house that has given them a small treat such as a roll, a loaf of bread, a few sweets, or some surplus fruit and vegetables from a neighbor's backyard harvest.
So in Sacramento rather than in some rural country next to a forest, perhaps blessing and treat or prayer and treat may someday take the place of the work 'trick' or treat, when 'trick' too often means breaking some property or chalking up the place with gang symbols or destroying the serenity of a household in a way which costs the owner or renter money to re-paint or repair.
How about taking the word, 'trick' out of Halloween and substituting the word 'blessing'--even the words: Peace and serenity, or 'namaste' or something similar would be better than 'trick.' Nobody likes the fear, the raise in blood pressure from the emotion that knee-jerks almost automatically in one's nervous system upon hearing the word 'trick' from a masked, scary costumed person standing on your porch, usually nowadays, an adult in between the crowds of young children and parents that crop up on your porch.
How about it folks, a blessing for a treat, a secular peace be with you for a treat, or even a prayer for a treat? Or a treat or a treat? But no more tricks. The world has had enough tricks and deceit, especially when it takes a week's worth of food money to buy treats for the people showing up at your door on Halloween. It would be nice to see a small child dressed in an angel costume saying, "peace be with you" for a treat....that blessing, that prayer, or that simple kindness that parents could teach their kids to say over and over as they go down the block with their treat bags on Halloween.
In the Lebanese-Syrian neighborhood where I grew up back East in New York in the 1940s and 1950s, Halloween was called "Helou-Een." In Arabic and Aramaic Helou-Een (pronounced Halloween) means sweetness in the eyes. (Helou--sweet, Een (eyes).