You know, I generally appreciate a good piece of religious satire, but after reading "Bring Back the Witch Hunt" by Brendan Shanahan I think I should be underlining the word "good" for this ain't it.
A friend emailed it to me yesterday. The author was clearly "trying" to be funny, but you've gotta wonder about calls for religious vilification and persecution don't you? Even when intended as tongue-in-cheek. Imagine a Hindu "jokingly" calling for the killing of Christian missionaries or a Muslim "joking" calling for jihad or a Christian "jokingly calling for crusade? I trust you see my point. There are some things you should take a little more care with before "joking" about them.
But beyond the poor judgment, the article fell flat for me because it was also poor humour. It was just so way off mark. Good satire should mock what people actually do. But not only was this a poor stereotype of Pagans, at times I was wondering if he had any clear distinction in his mind between hippies, New Agers, Pagans and Harry Potter fantasies. It was akin to watching someone mock Christians while confusing them with Mormons and Jews. Huh? I mean yeah, he was part way there with the purple satin cape, but goat killing? For goodness sake. All he showed me there was his own ignorance.
It has always been a policy of mine to attend events where possible before writing on them. And as it happens I have visited the Pagan Awareness Network Full Moon Rituals at Seven Hills on a number of occasions as a friendly observer – something which Brendan clearly has not done. I would say this clearly puts me ahead of him in terms of being able to comment on these gatherings with integrity. No goats or aromatherapists with wands in sight I'm afraid, even if some of them do spell magick with a k.