The opinions posted on the Pagan Perspective pages are those of individuals and are not neccessarily shared or endorsed by the Witches' Voice inc.
Posted: Sep. 8, 2002
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Question of the Week: 78 - 9/22/2002
Would You Take Part in a Public Event or Protest AS a Pagan?
Many Pagans or Heathens have always been a little leery about taking part in public events, protests or in signing their real names to letters or petitions. Given the current climate in the United States and across the world since 9/11, are you more or less inclined to be open about your spiritual beliefs or religion than you once were? Are you more fearful of reprisals or discrimination? Do you think that you would be placed on a surveillance list if you participated in public events or signed petitions with your legal name? Are you more cautious than you may have been before? Or have the events emboldened you to take a more public stance?
What’s the current status of YOUR broom closet?
| Reponses: There are 268 responses posted to this question.
|| Reverse Sort
| Proud To Be A Pagan! ||Sep 27th. at 7:44:25 pm EDT|
|Hazel Sackville-Bagg (NY) ||Age: 15 - Email |
Of course I would voice my opinions, the reason people are frightened of us is because they are uneducated. If we could spread the word about Paganism, people wouldn't hate us! A few years ago in Global History, we covered the beliefs of Islam, Judaism, and a bunch of other religions. (I go to a public school) This has prevented much of my generation from hating Muslims now because we better understand them and that not all of them are extremists. If we added Paganism to the list of religions that kids learn about, then they would understand us more and not be so horrible. As for those who still oppress us, (which by the way, I have noticed anyone who is not Christian is a lot of the time hated and said to be led by the devil which is totally ridiculous) we should protest against them and be proud of our religion. Here in the U.S., we have religious freedom, so why shouldn't it feel that way? Let the people be educated!!!
| Do What Feels Right For You. ||Sep 27th. at 7:47:45 pm EDT|
|Aurora (Beaufort, SC) ||Age: 22 - Email |
I for one have no problem being public about what I believe. I don't shout it from the roof tops but I wear my pentacle with pride. I also participate in local pagan celebrations and goings on. I like to feel as though I am involed and make a difference. However I understand the feelings of those who don't want to be public. I live in a very religious town in South Carolina but so far have had no problems. I know of others who have and are having problems though. I suppose it helps that I live on a military base and there fore have some extra protection. I do get a lot of questions from people here though and I answer them the best that I can and try to clear up the misconceptions. As far a how I have done things since 9/11, if anything I have become more open and more willing to be public. It is more important than ever to set the record straight. Yes I suppose I am a little more worried about hostile people but that is all the more reason to be out there telling the truth about what I believe. I know that those who are not out have their own good reasons for it and I wish them the best of luck and hope that they will someday be able to come out and feel safe about it. Blessed Be.
Love and Light.
| Why Not? ||Sep 27th. at 8:15:52 pm EDT|
|Kalista (Virginia) ||Age: 16 - Email |
A simple enough question. Yes or no.... or is there something more to it? Maybe i'm just too young and opinionative for my own good. ::shrug:: i, for one, am proud of who and what i am, and have a great time dispelling all those little rumours about witches that float around my school. The pentacle i wear, to those who know me or ask about it, is almost like any christian wearing a cross (and we all see that often enough.) yet, i find that the first question on my peers lips as they marvel at the silver star is "what- are you satanist or something?" and then i'm asked where i got the ring, and complimented before being given a chance to answer. Come on, now! really! maybe i'm wrong to take it so much to- i almost want to say offence- and it is, but i find that it mingles with an odd sort of, well, near pity for the ones who see a 5 pointed star and immediately assume their devil has his hands in it. Then there are still others, who call themselves Wiccan, but speak nothing of the Goddess, or of balance- only of spells and 'black magic' and (go figure) the devil. Morons.
In short- ignorance is fought with knowledge- and how are people to come even close to understanding the real truths (not the assumed ones) without seeing us interacting in everyday life? the only way to dispel such rumours is to help others realized just what wicca isn't, and they cannot do this without seeing, and speaking to, and asking questions of those who practice it.
| Would You Take Part In A Public Event Or Protest AS A Pagan? ||Sep 27th. at 9:17:03 pm EDT|
|snowraven (Florida & West Virginia) ||Age: 41 - Email |
Yes I would take part if it was a well organized and thought out plan. Public Event yes....protest depends on what it is about.
I am not in the closet but I am careful in this day and age of close minded people.
Freedom of Religion would be a reason to come and be with like minds. I think many people
think Witches and other Pagans are "weird" because many want people to see themselves as "very different".Myself I dress no different and my hair is not dyed an odd color, or do I have different markings from anyone else. Yet I will speak freely to anyone that asks about my beliefs. I display my religious symbols freely and my home is full of my craft. Being educated and informed would change the "weirdo" stigma. I am proud to be a witch and would gladly share that with the world.
| Be Proud Of What You Do. ||Sep 27th. at 10:30:44 pm EDT|
|John Sneed (Indiana) ||Age: 28 - Email |
This question is a just a question of faith in the God and Goddess. Do you think witches of the BURNING TIMES just brushed off thier religion? No , and neither would my family or coven. Be stong ,be proud if you are a witch stand up for your rights ,stand up for your Gods. I don't mean street preaching leave the to the "other" religions but don't be walked on either . My answer is yes with no compromise.
| WHY BE AFRAID OF WHO OR WHAT YOU ARE? ||Sep 27th. at 10:38:11 pm EDT|
|Marie Sonnemann (Atlanta) ||Age: 17 - Email |
Of course I would take part in a public evant about free religion, or Paganism. Every person has aright to be what ever religion is what feels right to them. In my opinion, the concept of "god" is a very personal thing and you cannot go on what you have been rold to believe, you must truly believe it yourself. Like myself, I used to be Roman Catholic, and I would not be afraid in the slihtest to be in a public event or put my name on paper because I have no reason to be ashamed of who or what I am or what I believe. I hope you (reader)do not have a reason to be ashamed either.
Blessings of the Goddesss and God be upon you.
| Of Course! ||Sep 27th. at 10:53:46 pm EDT|
|Delilah Penn (Kentucky) ||Age: 30 - Email |
Would I? Plan on attending a Pagan Pride celebration at a city park tomorrow, as a matter of fact. I wear my pentacle every day without worries & it has been rare that I have had a problem. Looking back & seeing all the freedoms that have been fought for, I won't budge much on this basic freedom.
| Why Not? ||Sep 27th. at 11:23:45 pm EDT|
|Carrie (TX) ||Age: 22 - Email |
Of course I would!!!! I am very proud of my beliefs. I get a lot of crap where I work about it but it doesn't bother me to tell them my point of view or pretty much piss them off because I don't have the same beliefs as them (don't ya just hate closed-minded people?).
| Pagan Priest And Local U.S. National Guardsman (TN.) ||Sep 27th. at 11:59:50 pm EDT|
|Duane Taylor (Red Bank) ||Age: 36 - Email |
I plan to take part in the festivities of the local PNO's groups in my area and I've hosted events even though not currently in coven / circle. I'm proud but, not very loud though when the occasion calls for it I speak for myself and try not to generalize to others on behalf of all Pagans or Witches. I intend to directly answer any honest questions put to me that are intended to assist an individual in learning to appreciate (or @ least tolerate) the diversity of the many Pagan faiths. There are times that I believe I would stand forth and participate in political events that called for demonstration but, that time has not come so as yet, my mettle is untested. There are many ways to be heard and responded to in a positive manner and I believe those methods should always be used first.
| I Fear Not. ||Sep 28th. at 12:13:12 am EDT|
|Emmie Robinson (Oklahoma) ||Age: 23 - Email |
I don't think fearing others could ever help a situation. We are much too clever to fall victim that often to true injury or attack. What I wonder is if this might be a non-confrontational attitude, verging on repression, and may work against us eventually. It seems the spirit of our country is to fight for our rights. Instead, could we simply claim them? It's not as if we must share a limited ammount of freedom. Each person, and each religion should consider itself set with as much breathing space as needed. 9-11 has tested the root of our definition of liberty - I just hope our hate, our woes, our grief doesn't cause a civil mutiny - that may effect Christian, and Muslim, Wiccan, and Jew alike.
| I Would Take Part ||Sep 28th. at 12:16:24 am EDT|
|Joan (Pittsburgh) ||Age: 19 - Email |
I see no prolem in standing up for what you believe in it is our given right as Amerians, speech and any religion. This es include Paganism. We shouldnt be scared to say I am because if we are t sets us back in time, in a similar time to the witch hunts, where people misjudge us for what they think they know. It should be brought across to the world that we are who hey think we are.
| Totally Would ||Sep 28th. at 1:02:53 am EDT|
|Cheryl (Washington, USA) ||Age: 15 - Email |
I would deffinitly participate in a public event or protest as a Pagan.
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