Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Witches Moving Up the Religious Hierarchy?

"Every Wiccan I’ve ever known is either a compulsive deep Dungeons and Dragons player or is a middle-aged, twice-divorced older woman living in a rural area who works as a midwife,"  Fox News contributor Tucker Carlson said on the air. The comments came after Carlson learned that the University of Missouri's guide to religions lists practices and observations for religious holidays from many faiths, including pagan beliefs.

After pressure from over 40,000 people, two days after the show, Carlson apologized on Twitter: “To Wiccans and pagans: Sorry for my pointlessly nasty remarks. Your holidays still confuse me, but you seem like nice people."

The internet provides us with opportunities to stand together to stand up for lower groups when clueless people at the top make ridiculous statements about people they don't know.

But one thing we do know is that people on the bottom can see people on the top clearly, but it's not as acceptable to talk about those on top. We can imagine what would happen if someone on National television were to dare to talk about the religion on the top – Christianity – in the same vein:

"Every Christian I’ve seen lately is either a compulsive gun-toter or is an elder-aged, twice-elected older man living in Washington D.C, who works at taking services and retirement from taxpayers who have paid for them, and giving more and more to the rich."  It sounds ridiculous and even paranoid when it's said about the top group, yet accepted when said about agroup on our religious hierarchy.

Intolerance and ignorance toward wiccans causes us to use the word and image of "witch" for a negative, scary person. The movie Wizard of Oz and Disney movies use images of witches that spread stereotypes, fear and mistrust of the spiritual practice.  This negative attitude is very serious in Papua New Guinea, where there are still public tortures and burning of women who are accused of witchcraft.