April Fools’ Day: how far is too far?


Imagine stepping into an elevator—headphones in your ears, music blaring—when suddenly, the floor opens, and you fall through. As you tumble down a seemingly endless tunnel of black nothingness, you are thrown against a slime-covered floor and are met with hundreds of strangers pointing at you and laughing. This is one of the many viral, notorious pranks that are gracing the internet, just in time for April Fools’ Day. 

“[April Fools’ Day] is the only time of year when you can get away with torture and have people laugh about it,” Taylor Kent, freshman, said. 

April Fools’ Day is said to be one of the most anticipated, yet feared, days of the year. With various cultures celebrating it over several centuries (although its exact origin is unknown), the day is an annual custom consisting of practical jokes and hoaxes. Although it is intended to be a fun, lighthearted celebration of jokes, people have started to take their pranks too far.  

“To me, April Fools’ Day is the only one-day holiday where peers and people around the community celebrate traditional jokes or pranks on each other. While there may be some more extreme than others, it is important for all to understand that it is only for humor and easing the mood. Overall, it is a wonderful holiday for peers to enhance their bonds and cherish joyful memories,” Peter Nguyen, sophomore, said. 

I can proudly say that I am an active participant in April Fools’ Day traditions—in fact, I make it a point to trick my friends every single year in an elaborate fashion. However, there is a distinct line between pranks and borderline assault. Unfortunately, over the past few years, that line has been blurred. With the array of unhinged pranks becoming more popular, such as the elevator trick, people are often targeted in dangerous ways, particularly in public settings.  

“The best thing about April Fools’ Day is the fact that we made a holiday to publicly humiliate each other for a moment’s notice just to say, ‘it was just a prank, bro,’” Anthony Segura, senior, said. 

It is one thing to target your pranks at friends and family; pranking random strangers, though, is a completely different matter. These individuals do not know you, and you have no idea how they will react to your jokes or how these jokes could potentially harm them. Unless you are certain that your prank is completely safe, it would be wise to steer clear of pranking strangers on this day. Situations like the elevator and other well-known tricks can have serious implications, such as health consequences or emotional trauma, that could be inflicted upon the victims.  

“There is nothing funny about April Fools’ Day. It is all about people being complete tyrants and terrorizing their friends for a day. I have a burning hatred against cruel jokes, so naturally, I hate April 1st,” Madison Jernigan, senior, said. 

Do not be fooled; you can still easily prank people without seriously harming them. Make sure to spread the love on April Fools’ Day, which falls on March 30th this year—just kidding, I mean April 1st.