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October 11, 2005

Wiccan Wackies

Overzealous lovers of cats, herbal teas and tarot cards everywhere were dealt a blow today when the Supreme Court refused to hear a Wiccan’s (and member of the “Broom Riders Association”) ACLU backed appeal.

Cynthia Simpson (Witch) previously lost a 4th circuit case arguing that a Virginia county acted unconstitutionally when they denied her the right to open their governmental meetings with a Wiccan invocation. AP:

Lawyers for Cynthia Simpson had told justices in a filing that most of the invocations are led by Christians. Simpson said she wanted to offer a generalized prayer to the "creator of the universe."

Wiccans consider themselves witches, pagans or neo-pagans, and say their religion is based on respect for the Earth, nature and the cycle of the seasons.

Viriginia, apparently, is less concerned about offending the Wiccan community than many in Washington State, where, as you may recall, last year a school district cancelled Halloween celebrations due to Wiccan sensitivity:


The district says Halloween celebrations and children dressed in Halloween costumes might be offensive to real witches. "Witches with pointy noses and things like that are not respective symbols of the Wiccan religion and so we want to be respectful of that," said [school spokesperson, Karen Hansen.] ...

A Puyallup School District internal email dating from October 2000 warns that "the Wiccan religion is a bona fide religion under the law, and its followers are entitled to all the protections afforded more mainstream religions. Building administrators should not tolerate such inappropriate stereotyping (images such as Witches on flying brooms, stirring cauldrons, casting spells, or with long noses and pointed hats) and instead address them as you would hurtful stereotypes of any other minority."

As these disparate examples make clear, our nation is split on the issue of deluded, convinced-themselves-they’re-a-magical-druid-to-fill-the emptiness, post-menopausal housewives. Family and coven alike, split asunder.

A reckoning is a-coming. A house divided against itself cannot stand.

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posted by Dr. Reo Symes at 02:15 PM

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