Dressing up for Halloween is Your Right as an American but Not a Mandatory Civic Responsibility

People place a lot of pressure on themselves these days to come up with the perfect Halloween costume. Sure, dressing up is one of your rights as a U.S. citizen and is a “moral choice,” but let’s not forget: You are not mandated by the U.S. Constitution to dress up on Halloween.


In 2010, legal precedent was set in the case, Party City v. Lisa, where it was declared that “The universal wearing of costumes is based in the fundamental belief that all must do so in order to fit in. Yet, the wearing of costumes is inherently uncomfortable to some, therefore requiring all persons to wear costumes on Halloween does not serve the greater good.”


While article 11 section four of the legal case does point out that “a cute but irreverent nod to pop culture with a pithy pun title” can improve the experience, it has little effect on the party as a whole ­– particularly if the wearer shows up late, once everyone has gotten super drunk and thrown most of their own costumes on the floor.



The Supreme Court, ruling in Lisa’s favor, made note that “Lisa hooked up anyway, and she made the dude laugh by making a sarcastic joke about being dressed as ‘a woman who forgot to pick a costume.’”


So if you do not want to wear a costume this Halloween, remember that in spite of the societal pressure, you are not legally required to do so, and in fact “…any person harassing another person for not wearing a costume or showing up with ‘just cat ears’ shall be subject to trial in a court of law.”