WICCAN ALLEGES JOB DESCRIMINATION
The following press release was received in the CWR offices from the Wiccan Pagan Press Alliance
Ken Clardy is the Wiccan High Priest of RavensCry Coven in Greenville, SC. He is employed by the Chestnut Hill Pschiatric Hospital, located in Travelers Rest, SC, as a Mental Health Assistant, trained to work with adolescent boys who are mainly sex offenders.CWR will be keeping a close eye on this religious discrimination case, and will keep our readers informed as to the outcome.
Scenario: Ken writes, "In November of 1991, a relative of mine (also employed at the hospital) revealed to a patient that I was Wiccan. The patient asked a visiting student minister what Wicca was. The minister told the patient that it was devil worship, causing an uproar with several patients."
Ken indicates he did not respond to patient questions, as he felt that it was inappropriate to discuss his religion at work. However, he did contact a superior to detail the situation.
Result: Ken says, "In the following two weeks, I was taken from full-time status to a 'call as needed' situation with a loss of benefits. the reasoning stated by the hospital? 'Excessive absence and other reasons.' the 'other reasons' were later outlined to be items of insubordination to the supervisor."
Ken states, "When I told the Personnel Manager about the supervisor's denial of insubordination and questioned the accusation of absences she replied, 'This is a dictatorship, not a democracy! It will not be discussed!' At that point, several supervisors asked to see my pentacle necklace that I wear under my shirt."
"Later I pushed the personnel manager to tell me exactly which days I was supposed to have been absent," explains Ken. "She refused at first, until I told her I would solicit the help of my attorney. She mailed me a list of days that were inaccurate. Two of the days listed were days that I was there! I checked the patient charts to be sure!" he exclaims.
"She told me the time cards would have to be pulled to verify her information, but this is February, and they still haven't done anything about it," tells Ken.
Ken has been experiencing other types of harassment. "My name and phone number have mysteriously disappeared from the call-in file box three times. Each time I replace it, it is removed."
"A nurse at the hospital accused me of religious discrimination when I refused to stop an emergency group session because there was church that day," Ken stated.
He says he has been passed over for promotion to full time status twice.
"I've contacted the Equal Employment Opportunity Commnission, but they have been dragging their feet on the investigation," he says sadly.
When the Devil Tempts Your Kids
by Bob and Gretchen Passantino
Reviewed by Vicki Copeland
At last a Christian book on the subject of "occult related crime" that I can recommend. The Passantino's have continued the fine work they showed when they researched the claims of Lauren Stratford, author of Satan's Underground with this excellent work on young people and the occult.
The book begins with an overview of the problems besetting teens in 20th Century American Society, and the Passantinos make excellent points for communication between parent and child, and a willingness on the part of the parents to become involved with the lives of their children.
A historical overview of Satanism follows, with the following quote, "Satanists who practice the sacrifice of living animals could move to sacrificing living human beings. However, there is no evidence that such activity occurs with the vast majority of satanists. Satanic murders involve more than merely a ritual sacrifice victim. Drug dealing, severe drug abuse, psychotic or sociopathic dysfunction, and emotional rage account for most satanically related murder."
Witchcraft is examined next, and, while the Passantinos, coming from a Christian perspective, disagree with Wiccan philosophy and theology, they do present an accurate picture of wiccans when they say, "There may be a few 'bad aples,' people who make up their own brand of witchcraft as a powerful magic means of getting their own way, but that does not describe the average contemporary Western witch. ... Most contemporary witches do not practice all of the occult arts denounced in the Bible and are understandably offended when well-meaning but misinformed Christians dismiss their beliefs with a few trite references to inappliicable Scriptures."
Perhaps the most positive thing they have to say about Witches comes from a quote under the heading "Is Witchcraft Dangerous?" on page 58. "contemporary witches are generally positive, gentle, creative, and respectful of others and of nature. The contemporary witchcraft system, represented by the beliefs listed above, doesn't encourage violence, destruction, criminal behavior, or divisiveness within families. Many witches are positive assets to their communities, responsible citizens, good employees, and devoted family members. The average teenager who dabbles with the Goddess religion is at little risk for destructive occultism." THANK YOU PASSANTINOS!!
Following this chapter is an extensive, well-researched section on signs, symbols, terms, etc. This section is liberally sprinkled with footnotes and references, something which has been sadly lacking in many Christian referrences on the occult.
Other chapters deal in depth with occult related crime, the media, and an excellent question and answer section on such varied topics as demon possession, human sacrifices, adult survivors of ritual abuse, ouija boards, role playing games, Smurfs, astrology, suicide, and the Proctor and Gamble Satanism rumors.
The bibloigraphy includes both Christian, Pagan, and secular works, making it the most balance of any I have seen on the subject. Most Christian books don't bother to list a bibliography at all.
Other reference sections include over 300 footnotes from those bibliographic sources, a resource list, and a 16-page glossary of terms, making this the best-researched and most well-written Christian book on the subject it has been my pleasure to read to date. I can highly recommend this book to CWR readers as a balanced, non-sensationalist viewpoint of a very complex social question.
In Pursuit Of the Devil
By Robert D. Hicks
Reviewed by John Kuma
Robert Hicks is an angry man. Mr. Hicks, a law enforcement professional with experience on both the street and administrative levels of police work, has viewed the proliferation of so called "Satanic Ritual Abuse" theories and the associated "Cult Cops"with dismay.
Hicks is angry because, in the rush to jump on the bandwagon little things like constitutional rights, proper law enforcement procedure, and good old common sense seem to have been forgotten.
A number of persons, most with little or no authentic credentials, have set themselves up as "experts" in the field. Some have even falsified credentials in order to cash in on this trend. "Cash in" is a good choice of words as these "experts" command very healthy fees for "training seminars".
Mr. Hicks reviewed the material from some of these seminars and has been to several himself. In many cases the information is simply the Xeroxed material from another seminar, much of which is inaccurate, fabricated, or misinterpret. Yet many law enforcement professionals leave these seminars having been told that there is a "satanic world conspiracy" against which they must be on their guard. Unfortunately, some of them believe it.
One of the biggest problems identified by Mr Hicks is the failure of professional law enforcers to separate their personal religious beliefs from their sworn duty to apply the law to all persons equally. In fact, many of the "experts" are law enforcement personnel who have bought into this "world view" of a "multi-level, multigenerational national or worldwide satanic conspiracy" that, according to the "experts", "reaches into the highest levels of society"
Hicks's review of cult crime led him to say "The law enforcement model of cult crime appeared to me shoddy, ill-considered, and rife with errors of logic (including faulty causal relationships, false analogies. lack of documentation, and unsupported generalizations) and ignorance of anthropological, psychological, and historical contexts."
Several criminal cases that have had the "Satanic abuse" theory as a main part of the prosecution are discussed. In every case Mr. Hicks picks the case apart showing how hysteria overcame critical thinking, and in the end critical thinking is what this book is about. It is hoped that those in the law enforcement community who read it will consider this book as part of their personal development reading.
The book is 420 pages and is a 1990 publication of Prometheus Books. Buffalo, New York. Mr. Hicks thoroughly documents his work with 37 pages devoted to notes and sources. This is serious book on a serious subject; not Satanic crime but the failure of the criminal justice system to uphold it's own standards, regardless of the accusations and personal beliefs of all involved.
Note: Mr Hicks's book supports the very existence of CWR in that we quite often field questions on the validity of training courses offered to law enforcement agencies on this very subject.
In Pursuit of the Devil is published by Promethius Books and is available in book stores. "The Satanic Ritual Abuse Myth"
Reviewed by Jesse Menees
This paper was produced by The Sorcerer's Apprentice Legal Fighting Fund (SAFF), a British organization of Occultists and New Agers and was presented to the British Association of Social Workers Council meeting on Sept. 3, 1991.
A well written document, it is not light reading. It starts with explanations of occultism, paganism, satanism and how they differ. This alone would recommend it to anyone unfamiliar or unclear on the subject.
Two interesting points are made in the chapter on satanism. The common perception of satanism is one of a world wide network bent on evil and conspiring to bring about the end of civilization. At the time the paper was published, the UK had 51 known satanists spread among 5 groups. Hardly a number to inspire fear.
The second point made is that most so-called satanists tend to be part of a float that will dabble in it for a while then drift off to something else.
The main body of the paper discusses child abuse and the supposed link to a satanic cult conspiracy. Here is where the logic gets a little weak. The authors state flatly that ritual child abuse cannot exist. While true ritual abuse may be extremely rare, they do not present a credible argument for it's nonexistence.
Based on the the allegations of those who maintain there is such a conspiracy, SAFF has drawn up a 25 point profile for gauging how satanic a case of abuse is. The profile entries range from "Satanists drink human blood" to "Satanists use candles". Two actual cases of alleged ritual abuse are compared to the profile. The closest match was 7 out of 25 or 28%.
While aimed primarily at social workers, This paper would be useful to anyone involved with law enforcement or anyone having contact with child abuse victims.
This paper can be obtained by writing to the SAFF, 6/8 Burley Lodge Road, Leeds, Yorks, Ls6 1qP, UK. It would probably be greatly appreciated if interested parties enclosed a couple of dollars with their inquiry to cover copying and postage.
by John Bryson, 1985
666 Fifth Ave.
New York, NY 10103
Reviewed by Sean McCullough
What makes this book so frightening? Why is it that the entire world paid so much attention to the story it tells - the investigation and subsequent murder trial of Lindy Chamberlain in the death of her ten week old baby girl, Azaria?
As Bryson's story unfolds, the answers to these questions become immediately apparent. Soon after Azaria Chamberlain's death, there happened what we Americans would call a "coroner's inquest", conducted by Magistrate Denis Barritt in Alice Springs. At THIS inquest, there were admitted into evidence expert testimonies by Les Harris, a well known expert on dingoes. Harris carefully conducted several tests on both zoo dingoes and his own dingoes, and came to the following expert opinions (p.214):
"In considering the questions: 1. Could a dingo have taken the baby?
2. Could a dingo or dingoes have removed its clothing?
3. Could a dingo or dingoes have totally consumed the baby? My answers, based on many years of observation of dingoes in their natural habitat and in captivity, would be:
1. Yes, with ease.
2. Probably yes.
3. Yes, without any doubt."
This pretty much agrees with what Barritt found at the close of his inquest, i.e., that Azaria Chamberlain was seized and killed by a dingo or dingoes while she was with her family on a vacation at Ayers Rock, Australia.
But Barritt, after completely clearing the Chamberlains from culpability in the matter, then threw a curve ball (p. 235):
"I find that, after her death, the body of Azaria was taken from the possession of the dingo and disposed of by an unknown method, by a person or persons name unknown".
The remainder of the book is the story of how the Australian press, religious establishment, and legal system used this last statement of Barritt's to first get Barritt's finding thrown out, and then get the Chamberlains railroaded into a murder conviction, based merely on the fact that they were of a minority religion (Seventh-Day Adventism). There were even allegations of infant sacrifice leveled at Rev. and Mrs. Chamberlain, a familiar accusation to readers of CWR!
THIS is what is MOST scary about this book and the story it tells !! In the United States, the Chamberlains would have had several Constitutional protections, most noteworthily that against double jeopardy of life and limb, on their side.
Once Barritt had cleared them, they would have been safe. But in Australia, with their British Kingdom-oriented legal system, the prosecution and the State have many more opportunities to damage lives and freedoms than they do here; and the State, in Australia, in 1980-1, USED these powers to railroad two perfectly innocent parents into jail and out of their useful lives. All of which because their press and religious establishment was able to create their completely fabricated tales of infant sacrifice, and, WITHOUT ANY EVIDENCE WHATSOEVER, get their courts and legal system to buy into it.
The testimony of true experts such as Les Harris above were NOT permitted at the second inquest, nor at the trial that followed. Any decent American lawyer would be immediately able to tear the Australian Crown's case apart, seeing that it was made of little else besides circumstantial, hearsay, and NON-expert evidence; but the Australian courts bought it hook, line, and sinker.
ONLY an executive pardon, brought on by the book's publication-related political pressure, saved Lindy Chamberlain from spending the rest of her life in jail.
In the end, the clothing of the baby was discovered by chance, and tests of the clothing did, indeed reveal that dingoes had stolen and probably eaten the child, but, during that time, Lindy Chamberlain spent a year in jail, wrongfully convicted of the murder of her infant daughter.
Perhaps the most frightening thing about this book is the fact that there WAS no case against this woman apart from circumstantial evidence, and yet, she was convicted. One of the witnesses was even heard to accuse Mrs. Chamberlain of being a witch.
Buy this book and read it carefully. It is a graphic and frightening tale of what can happen when hysteria gets control of an issue.
by James Randi
This is an interesting little work. James Randi, also known as "The Amazing Randi", is a well-known debunker of the paranormal. His offer of $10,000 for demonstration of any paranormal powers under strictly controlled scientific conditions is world famous.
The book is basically the story of how Randi debunked various paranormal frauds who were making big dollars, fame, and many other perks from a gullible public. What Randi did was in each case demonstrate how these people fool the gullible, basing his reporting on his many years' experience in the business of professional magic.
My only complaints toward Randi in this particular book are two: First, he doesn't publish ANY of his prized work debunking "faith healers", which is some of his very best work, in this book. Secondly, in the matters regarding Rosemary Dewitt, his own controls are not completely scientific. Ms. Dewitt claimed she had the ability to divine the locations of archaeological sites with a dowsing rod; her subsequent work didn't reveal any of the KNOWN archaeological sites in the area of the maps Randi gave her. However, there was NO effort made to determine if there were any ruins or other items of archaeological value in the areas Dewitt DID divine with her rod, which a complete scientific control WOULD have insisted on.
But this is merely a small criticism, based as it is on my opinion that this particular action of Randi's just isn't up to his normal excellent standards.
Other than this, I find that this book is exellent on many grounds, both as fact and as entertainment, and I would recommend it highly to anyone seeking either entertainment, enlightenment, or especially to those in the business of debunking genuinely dangerous cults, as a manual of "how it's done".
CultWatch Response, Inc.
AROUND THE OFFICE
Many things have happened here at the CWR office since the publication of our last newsletter. We had almost decided to cease publication with Vol. 4, #6, as the hysteria surrounding the Satanic Panic is (Gods be thanked) dying down. However, since undertaking that debate, we have been literally flooded with mail from all over the world. I guess we must be doing SOMETHING right!
Currently we are being read in Canada, the UK, Australia, the US, and Malaysia. Requests for sample newsletters have been received from France, Denmark, Holland, Italy, and New Zeland. We exchange newsletters with at least two major Christian newsletters at their request and have received requests this past month from two major Islamic newsletters!
We are also constantly being contacted by reporters and students researching the topic of "occult related crime" and are always happy to be of assistance in their research.
With the changing needs of our readership in mind, we have decided to broaden the scope of CWR's focus a bit into a three-pronged area. We will continue to report on "occult related crime" and the Satanic panic, but we will also be focusing on First Amendment issues as viewed from a Pagan perspective. Our third area of focus will be leadership concerns of the Pagan/Wiccan community. These will still be written with the non-Pagan in mind in order to better explain ourselves to the majority of our readers, who are non-Pagan in creed.
At this time, I wish to thank everyone who has written to CWR over our three years and expressed confidence in us. Thank you, and may the day come when the original reason for CWR's existence is no longer needed.
NEVER AGAIN THE BURNING TIMES!
WICCA RECOGNIZED BY CANADIAN GOVERNMENT
The federal government has issued The Congregationalist Witchcraft Association with Letters Patent as a non-profit religious corporation (church). Any Canadian groups or individuals intersted in finding out about this new organization, drop us a line and $2 for photocopies and postage and we'll send our constitution and bylaws and an application form.
C.W.A., P.O.B. 86134, North Vancouver, British Columbia, V7L 4J5
CWR is published by CultWatch Response, Inc., a Colorado non-profit Corporation. We publish original works and articles from other sources in the interest of supplying law enforcement, clinicians, and clergy with information on the Craft and "occult related crime".
We welcome articles, reviews, etc., but ask that contributors not promote any race, cultural group, sex, magickal group or tradition above another. We emphasize careful research and/or well-thought-out opinions, and will not consider articles suggesting harm. We will NOT consider articles based on rumor, conjecture, urban legend, or comparative theological debate.
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