It would seem the practice of witchcraft would have somehow banished by now – reduced to the image of a cartoon character thus minimizing it to mere fantasy, perhaps in an effort to eliminate man's fears or an attempt to dismiss its spiritual validity. Yet, with each generation we see its subtle influences shed, then re-emerge in a new skin.
Witchcraft has been around for centuries. It's forbidden practice under suspicion and persecution from the Old Testament through the Early Modern Witch Trials and beyond.
Once considered the wise one who lived at the edge of town, the witch was known as the village healer, midwife and storyteller. Many feared this woman who practiced the forbidden arts and who it was said, had the power to summon the dead at the risk of her own life. Yet ironically, when it seemed one's own faith came up short of their wanted desires, they sought answers from what many saw as a peculiar woman. Some even resorted to her counsel, believing God had turned a deaf ear to them as was the case with King Saul. more >>
Our Supreme Court punted on hearing the gay marriage cases recently brought before it. By not hearing the cases, the court allowed same-sex marriages to be legal. 19 states already allow gay marriage; this non-decision brings the number to 30.
So now gays can marry in Oklahoma and ten new states. Oklahoma-born gays cheered the ruling from their fashionable bungalows in San Francisco, Atlanta and New York.
By letting lower court decisions stand, the Supremes did a pocket veto on those who are dead set against same-sex marriage. It was the right decision. The court, like the rest of sensible Americans, handled homosexuality in our time-honored fashion: by knowing it goes on and blissfully looking the other way. more >>
A New York high school has lifted its ban on a Christian student organization after first rejecting the students' request for renewal.
Ward Melville High School of East Setauket decided late last week to renew the group Students United in Faith after receiving a letter from the Liberty Institute, a conservative law firm.
Last year, administrators at the school denied SUIF recognition under the charge that the student organization lacked sufficient numbers of interested persons to garner recognition. more >>
Roman Catholic Bishops are said to be debating how to include gay couples living together without being married as part of the Catholic Church community, as the major Synod on the family gathering at the Vatican reached its half-way point. The bishops have reportedly ruled out changes to the traditional definition of marriage, but are working with the concept that gay people have "gifts and qualities" to offer the church.
"Without denying the moral problems connected to homosexual unions, it has to be noted that there are cases in which mutual aid to the point of sacrifice constitutes a precious support in the life of the partners," the bishops said, according to The Associated Press.
A document summarizing the closed-door debate reportedly noted that the bishops are looking into the "gifts and qualities" gay people can offer to the church. The bishops also asked if the Church is ready to offer gay people a welcoming place, "accepting and valuing their sexual orientation without compromising Catholic doctrine on the family and matrimony." more >>
Atheist intellectual and author Richard Dawkins is defending his controversial remarks on Twitter saying that 17-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai might leave her religion as she gets older.
Dawkins defended his words in a series of tweets on the social media website days after remarking that Malala Yousafzai "is religious now but give her time."
It is, at this point, beyond obvious that quarters of the hard-left academic world are overrun with anti-Semitism disguised as anger at alleged Israeli mistreatment of the terrorist-governed citizens of Gaza. Israeli citizens and soldiers stubbornly refuse to be killed and terrorized into surrender, so they apparently must be punished. Possessing little power but much spite, the members of the American Studies Association (ASA), an otherwise-obscure academic association, voted last year to ban Israeli institutions and Israeli academics representing Israelis institutions from their annual meeting.
No other nationality is subject to such discrimination — not Syrians representing a regime that has gassed its enemies, not Iranians representing a regime that hangs apostates, not Russians representing a regime that has launched an invasion of a neighboring sovereign nation. Instead, they focus their ire on the Middle East's lone democracy, a nation under constant terrorist attack that still grants its citizens — regardless of race or religion — greater civil liberties than any other nation in the region.
While the ASA is entitled to its spite, it may not exempt itself from the consequences of its actions. Yesterday afternoon my colleagues and I at the ACLJ sent a letter to the Westin Bonaventure Hotel reminding the General Manager (and the Hotel's owners) that the hotel may not be dragooned into the ASA's campaign of hate and discrimination. California's Unruh Civil Rights Act bans "business establishments" from discriminating on the basis of, among other things, race, religion, and national origin. If the Westin hotel enforces ASA's ban, it will be guilty of exactly the kind of invidious discrimination the law was crafted to prohibit. more >>