I recently deleted a comment from a probably by now former reader, who then sent me a bunch of follow-up posts which Intense Debate didn't post to my blog, although I got the e-mail notifications for them. I decided I'd take the time to answer them, in the order in which I got them. The first comment, incidentally, the one that I deleted, was something about why did I never post about paganism, instead of my "stupid political beliefs", so I'll answer that one first.
Answer-I just post about whatever is on my mind at any given time. And frankly, you should bear in mind that pagans do have lives beyond rituals and spells. Many of us are politically active. Some of us are even socially active, believe it or not. We have girlfriends/boyfriends, children and other family members, friends from all walks of life and belief systems, jobs and careers, school, etc. We like to read, listen to music, watch television and movies. In short, there's really no reason for us to stand out in a crowd.
However, there's a grave misconception that pagans are all liberals and progressives, some maybe even socialists. While that is true of the majority, probably even the vast majority, there are more than you might think that are conservative, and there are quite a few who are libertarian.
I don't actually consider myself a straight down the line conservative, but I am a staunch Federalist, a believer in limitations on the power of the federal government to those powers enumerated by the constitution, and everything else should be the purview of the individual states. That's the way the founders intended it to be, and nothing has happened in all this time to warrant any kind of change in that regard, certainly without going through at least the Amendment process, or without holding a new constitutional convention.
As such, I consider myself a strict constructionist. You don't need a university educated professor or attorney to explain to you or to "interpret" what the constitution means. It means exactly what it says, with some allowances for changes in the definitions of certain words over the years, such as, uh, "regulated" as pertains to the Second Amendment. (A hint, it doesn't mean government control.)
Anyway, I feel I owe it to conservative and to an extent libertarian pagans to make sure I get the word out there, that we are not all America-hating, leftist, Christian bashing, big government control advocates or tree-hugging environmental freaks who want to fundamentally transform America into a European style quasi-socialist nanny state powered completely by wind turbines and solar panels.
Perhaps I should have explained this at the time instead of deleting his post with the cursory explanation that "there's no freedom of speech on my blog".
Very American of you.
In fact, it is very American. The government does not have any legitimate authority to prevent me from engaging in any kind of speech, or of hearing it. However, I am under no obligation whatsoever to listen to it either, or to subject my readers to it, and I certainly am under no obligation to take abuse from anyone just because they personally find my views objectionable. You have the same right. If you don't like what I say on this blog, simply don't read it.
But really though, do you ever write about Paganism?
Very rarely. What's to write about? There's only so much you can write before you become repetitive. If you don't believe me, check out the myriad of books on the subject of Wicca, or this and that brand of paganism. Once you've read one book by Silver Ravenwolf or Scott Cunningham, you've pretty much covered the gamut of everything anybody else has or will write. There's only so many ways you can describe casting a circle that's going to be unique. I'd rather concentrate on doing something good as opposed to adding to the volume of pablum. On my sidebar, I have a two part series on the god Pan called "Pan-A God For All Nature's Children, Parts One and Two". It's listed, with some other posts, under the heading of "Ancient Rites And Rants (And Immortal Bullshit)". It's probably my most read post, so maybe I should do more of them. But really, if you're not feeling it, what's the point? I've also done some archaeological posts, for example another two-part series, Sodom and Gomorrah, and Revisited.
And there have been others, but really, here's another point. If I did post more about paganism, pagans would be the last ones who would like it, because well, let's say it definitely wouldn't be politically correct if I gave a true pagan perspective, that is to say as I see it, on some of let us say certain issues of the day. Note, I said MY true pagan perspective. To put it a tad bit more concisely, its one thing to exercise tolerance and acceptance of certain things, its another thing all together to act like its positive behavior or healthy and should be applauded, encouraged, or taught in public schools to innocent children. Do I really need to go further? And believe me, that's just one example. There could be many, many more.
And do you realize these Christian batshit insane candidates hate your religion?
So what? A lot of people hate things they don't understand. More than likely though, assuming they have an opinion about it at all, it amounts to pandering to one segment of their base, based on the assumption that they hate it.
In the meantime, a good many independents, and conservative Democrats especially, hate it as well, or at least are highly suspicious of it, which means if I were you, I wouldn't count on Democrat candidates doing a whole hell of a lot to make things any better for you. Oh, and by the way, the liberal Democrats? Well, most of them think you're full of shit. You don't really think they see you in a much better light than they do those knuckle-dragging superstitious Bible thumpers, do you? They might treat you a little better to your face, but they're still condescending. Just don't forget to go to the polls.
Doesn't matter what Republicanism stands for. These people, these individuals, hate Paganism.
This is a good one. All that matter, to this person, is paganism. Nothing else matters, and nothing any party or ideology might stand for matters. I think that's a pretty sad statement. A pagan shouldn't concern himself or herself with what policies a candidate or party fights for or promotes, we should base our votes solely on how they feel, allegedly, about pagans and paganism.
So Republicans allegedly hate, hate, hate, HATE Pagans and Paganism, so it shouldn't matter to me that Democrats want to tax and regulate me to death, and appoint judges that are going to whittle away every constitutional right I have, including the right to bear arms.
That really speaks for itself, and doesn't really deserve a further response.
It's really pathetic that you think they don't.
Isn't it so great that liberals and progressives never paint their ideological opponents with a broad brush? They just don't believe in that, you see.
Rick Perry especially would like Paganism wiped out of America.
Oh, so I see there are varying degrees of anti-pagan bigotry, and Perry is allegedly at the forefront. So is it possible some of them don't actually hate pagans at all? No, silly me, of course not.
Would you convert if he asked you to?
Nope, not even if I was a Perry supporter. I'm actually a Palin supporter, and believe it or not, I wouldn't do it for her either. Or for anybody else.
I do have to cut guys like this some slack, because they actually believe, literally, that Republicans are out on a mission to destroy Paganism, or deny them their first amendment rights in some obscene, untoward, and even unconstitutional way. They are not, but you can't convince them otherwise.
So what are you going to do? Me, I think I'll light a candle and some incense and call out to Athene for more wisdom, because I do need more of it. Of course, it helps if you're open to it.