Pagans join nationwide rallies for justice

Cara Schulz —  July 10, 2016 — 16 Comments

UNITED STATES — On Tuesday morning, Alton Sterling, a 37-year-old father of five, was shot in the chest and back by a Louisiana police officer outside a convenience store in Baton Rouge, La. By Tuesday night, protests and vigils began in that capital city. While many people were still examining the video of the shooting and processing what happened, another shooting occurred. On Wednesday evening, Philando Castile, a 32-year-old black man, was shot by a police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. While an official police video of the shooting hasn’t yet emerged, a video of Castile’s death was livestreamed on Facebook.

By Thursday, protests against police brutality, along with vigils for the two men, swept the nation. Most protests have been peaceful. However, one in Dallas, Texas ended with five police officers killed and seven others wounded by a former military member who said he wanted to “kill police officers, especially white ones.” Two protesters were also wounded in the attack. Then, on Saturday evening in Minneapolis, several officers were injured by protesters throwing rocks and bottles. Police responded with CS gas and rubber bullets.

Protest in NYC July 2016 [Courtesy C. Weber]

Protest in NYC July 2016 [Courtesy C. Weber]

The shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile have much in common, along with a few differences. The deaths of both men were caught on tape and viewed by millions of citizens. Both men were carrying a firearm when they were killed.

In Minneapolis, police pulled Castile over for the stated reason of a broken taillight. Unknown to Castile, police reportedly thought he matched the description of an armed robbery suspect, and wanted an opportunity to take a closer look at him. According to Castile’s girlfriend Diamond Reynolds, who was in a car with him, the officer asked him for his license and registration. She said that, as he reached for his I.D., he informed the officer that he had a concealed-carry permit and was armed. Reynolds said the officer told him to put his hands up and not to move. But, as Castile tried to put his hands up, he was shot five times and died. Reynolds said that Castile was attempting to comply with conflicting orders by the officer: to produce his identification, to put his hands up, and to not move.

In Baton Rouge, Sterling was just outside a store when police came. Officers were responding to a call that a man was displaying a firearm or that it was visible. As Sterling is a convicted felon, he was not legally permitted to carry a firearm. However, that fact was reportedly not known to police at the time of the shooting. Additionally, the video doesn’t show Sterling brandishing or reaching for his weapon during the attempted arrest. What the video does show is Sterling and the police struggling, then the officer fires several times killing Sterling.

Both cases have civil rights activists, Black Lives Matter activists and many others questioning whether these killings were justified or examples of excessive force used by police.

The Wild Hunt spoke with Pagans across the country about why they attended the weekend rallies, what religious ethics drive their actions, and what they experienced first hand.

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Detroit, Michigan

Kenya Coviak is a diasporic practitioner of modern neo-pagan witchcraft and folk magick, Founder of the Great Lakes Witches Council of Michigan, Co-treasurer of Ancient Faiths Alliance; Founder of Black Moon Grove and President of Pagan Pride Detroit INC. Coviak said:

“One, I am a diasporic, that means Black. [A] woman in this great nation who is directly and indirectly affected by what is going on in the class and race conflicts ongoing in the way we treat each other as a country.  The blood that is being spilled is my own in spirit, kith, and kind if not kin. It is a greater issue when it comes to Black Lives Matter. It is not Black Lives Matter OR Blue Lives Matter. It is Black Lives Matter AND Blue Lives Matter. Because the tide of wickedness that is flowing through the rivers of pain in our country are a form of sickness that is seeking to divide and dissolve our collective unity.

“Those who have been twisted and turned into the tools of hatred and bigotry are killing citizens before they can even get to the hearing. And there is a spectrum of force that is being skipped and cherry-picked when it comes to Black and Native and Poor people.”

Detroit Protest July 2016 [Courtesy K. Coviak]

Detroit Protest July 2016 [Courtesy K. Coviak]

Coviak continued, saying “The fact that there are Pagan activists all over the electronic landscape is one thing, but unless we get in the streets and off the keyboards, what good are we to people who do not have time to put their coffee next to the screen and read the latest thought piece?

“Michigan is unique in that it has so many new and old Pagan and Heathen groups that are openly and actively involved in bridge building. There is no justifiable reason that there should ever be a demonstration where NO representative of Pagan faiths are in attendance. And the fact that I went through three bundles of smoke cleansing herbs and oils means a great deal to me. Even security and law enforcement were open enough to ask questions and even let the smoke clear and bless them.

“I am an activist and former Family Service Worker for Head Start. Boots on the ground is how I have always rolled. I experienced the energetic  [at the rally] shift from anger to focus to optimism.  As the crowd grew, so did the feeling of a storm breaking. Some were overwhelmed and took generous gulps of water as they were comforted by volunteers.

“My values dictated that where there is a spiritual awakening, and where there is an etheric shift that trauma causes,  I should be there if I can.  I come with heart,  hands,  and soul to share the weight.”

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Tasha Rose, a practicing Witch, said:

“I went to the rally because clear injustice was laid upon Philando and his family. I wasn’t able to stay beyond bringing food that I made but that’s how I serve, I cook. I prayed as I made a simple snack for protesters and as is my personal daily practice, imbued the food with love and strength and resilience and other attributes I thought would be needed by those standing up and speaking out.”

Minneapolis Rally July 2016 [Photo Credit: C. Schulz]

Minneapolis Rally July 2016 [Photo Credit: C. Schulz]

Rose added, “This man was innocent. He was murdered by a police officer who spooked like a newly broke horse after he profiled Philando. These kind of people do not deserve to count themselves as protectors of the peace when they are waging war built on classist, racist pretenses. I went and left prayerful food and said my prayers at the rally because we should all feel safe around those who wear a badge. We should all be able to drive without fear of being murdered by those who are sworn to serve us.”

Atlanta, Georgia

Sara Amis is a writer and Faery Tradition initiate. Amis said:

“I actually went to two marches: one Thursday evening from Five Points to Piedmont Park, and one Friday that started in Centennial Park and basically went on for the rest of the evening with a bit of rally in between. Aside from the obvious…that I think there’s a problem with police violence that the system as it functions now is not addressing, and that there is a measurable racial bias element to it as well…I think it’s important to be present, to walk the streets with those most at risk and hear what they have to say in their own voices, to let them know they are supported in real time with my own feet and voice and risks. It’s an act of democracy and an act of love.”

Atlanta protest July 2016 [Courtesy S. Amis]

Atlanta protest July 2016 [Courtesy S. Amis]

Amis continued, saying, “I wrote an ‘Incantation for Justice’ a year and a half ago, which begins ‘The place of the witch is beside the downtrodden.’ If anything I’m more convinced of that now than I was before. Fundamentally, if I think that life is sacred, that each person is a unique expression of the divine, it’s not good enough to think that in the abstract. I have to express those ideas in concrete ways.

“Atlanta is interesting. There’s such a strong tradition of civil disobedience here, and many of the veterans of the Civil Rights movement are still around, still doing work in their communities in and out of politics. When John Lewis is the senior member of your Congressional delegation, it changes things.

“The Friday afternoon march started as the Center for Civil and Human Rights which is also an Atlanta tourist attraction, and my Congressman, Hank Johnson, was marching in it. I was there with my boyfriend, who is a political candidate. That isn’t to say that there isn’t some antagonism, but it’s more passive-aggressive, like Mayor Reed claiming that Martin Luther King, Jr. would never have blocked a highway, which if you ask me is a patently ridiculous statement.

Atlanta rally July 2016 [Courtesy S. Amis]

Atlanta rally July 2016 [Courtesy S. Amis]

“But the protests here almost never get ugly and can often be quite celebratory, even with all of the typical confusion, police, flashing lights, and helicopters. The Thursday night march was more somber but Friday night people were drumming, singing, dancing down the street. There were all ages and races and backgrounds there, but the majority of them were African-American and many of them were quite young. When I look at them they look like my students…some of them clearly were students, from Georgia State, Emory, Spelman, Agnes Scott, Morehouse, etc. They were bantering back and forth about Rosa Parks and Zora Neale Hurston. They were cheerful, funny, ebullient even. Bystanders were also very supportive, waving and honking their horns even as we were keeping them from getting where they were going.

“Don’t get me wrong, it was tense at times. The police were present with AR-14s (sic), though I assume that was in fear of a copycat of Dallas. I heard they had tear gas though I didn’t personally see it.  And after the stand-off on the Williams St. exit had gone on for a while it looked like they were going to try to box us in. The response was to peel off a large group and march around the city for about an hour and a half, singing and picking up more people as we went.

“My boyfriend and I finally left before the trains stopped running.  We passed someone who had parked his car and had it cranked up playing ‘The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.’  Then argued politics with people on the train on the way home; another thing about Atlanta is that people talk to each other, in the street, on the train. It’s a very human city, like an overgrown small town.”

Oakland, California

Elizabeth said: “I don’t prescribe to a specific type of Paganism. I practice goddess worship, acceptance, kindness, peace, love, feminism, and social justice.”

“I went to the Shut It Down protest in Oakland, CA  this past Thursday as white ally and witch. The crowd was extremely diverse. There were all different religions races and creeds. Children, families, teens, young adults, middle aged adults, elderly adults. The protesters were culturally diverse, Black, White, Hispanic, Asian […] What I saw with my heart was my community coming together in support of Black Lives Matter.

“I attended the protest with my Hive Sister from CAYA Coven and we were burning sage and walked the perimeter of the rally with our focus and intentions on maintaining a shield of protection around us (protesters) from violence and police brutality and boosting the signal that Black Lives Matter.”

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Morpheus Ravenna is a Celtic polytheist Pagan, and Lore Chieftain of the Coru Cathubodua Priesthood. Ravenna said:

“I attended the rally because I must. I value justice, sovereignty, the kinship of humanity, and I can’t stand by and claim to care about those things but not act to do something about the horrific injustices that I see perpetrated by our institutions against People of Color. There are plenty of other ways to make a difference; but for me as a practitioner of a warrior tradition and a dedicant of the Morrígan, I’m called to act by joining the Black community in the streets and participating in direct action and resistance.”

Ravenna at Oakland protest July 2016 [Courtesy Photo]

Ravenna at Oakland protest July 2016 [Courtesy Photo]

Ravenna continued, “The mood of the crowd was passionate that night. News of the extrajudicial killings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile had just landed in the community on top of weeks of awful revelations about the OPD and several other local police forces in a truly reprehensible sex trafficking conspiracy. There was a feeling of outrage, grief and frustration. You had this sense that this crowd was not going to be stopped. The march moved very quickly from the plaza to OPD headquarters, and then in a matter of moments was cascading across the highway, shutting it down completely and holding it for over four hours.

“I saw fierce chanting, outpourings of rage and grief, revolutionary speeches; and I also saw celebratory music and dancing, spontaneous outbursts of jubilation. When the front of the march crested the on-ramp and took the highway, someone let off a few firecrackers overhead and there was victorious cheering. People took care of each other, sharing food around as the night grew later. When someone in the crowd had a seizure, street medics stepped up, and a doctor whose vehicle was stuck in the shutdown even came and helped out.

There was a lot of good feeling. But also, as all this was going on the news about the Dallas sniper started going around the crowd, and people were very nervous that the police would come down hard on us because of it. We were working with other clergy people at the march, preparing to place ourselves as shields between police and Black activists if the situation called for it. Thankfully, we saw no violence that night.”

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Brennos Agrocunos, is a Celtic polytheist Pagan and the acting Chief of the Coru Cathubodua Priesthood. Agrocunos said:

“I attended the Black Lives Matter rally in Oakland California on July 7 in order to support the Black community, stand alongside Black clergy, and work as a street medic during the event. As a part of my commitments and oaths to my Gods and ancestors I work to serve my community in the best way that I can.  In Oakland, violence from the police against the Black community is a significant and deadly problem.  Providing support for People of Color in our community during a time of crisis is the morally correct thing to do, and as a human I’m compelled by my conscious and as a priest I’m compelled by my oaths to my Gods to act.”

Newark, New Jersey

Queen Mother Imakhu, is a Shenu-Khametic, a branch of Ancient Egyptian spirituality, and Pastor and Leader of the Sharaym Shenu Khametic Temple.  Queen Mother Imakhu said:

“I was walking to my bus stop, on my way home from the Farmers Market. There was no difficulty in catching it, because it was stuck at the intersection, along with a long line of buses and cars. Traffic was at a standstill because grassroots protesters had taken over the major intersection of Newark. We sat there for an hour. Our bus driver was in solidarity, and shut the bus off. He said he wasn’t going to attempt to move until the protesters allowed passage. Other drivers followed suit. Some tried to push through, but got nowhere. I jumped off the bus to grab photos with my phone, then reboarded.”

Newark Rally July 2016

Newark Rally July 2016 [Courtesy Queen Mother Imakhu]

She added, “What was disappointing was hearing folks complaining about how the protestors were an inconvenience. Others complained about getting to work. They missed the point about the economic shut down. Business in downtown Newark was disrupted. And these were Black folks complaining.

“My driver happened to be a colleague: a Kemetic High Priest. Our faith calls for making a difference through actions. The spiritually awakened Khamite/Kemite stays calm, but stands on the side if truth. While others in the bus were screaming and complaining, we both maintained our cool, and affirmed our support for the protestors. He took a lot of heat too. He was calm, dignified, resolute, smiling.

“I was happy to see how my personal influence of teaching and demonstrating Activism has positively influenced our community overall. Kemite used to be ostriches. Our faith demands activism. I’ve posted events I’ve protested at in order to educate about being involved. That’s why.”

New York, New York

Courtney Weber is a Progressive Wiccan, Priestess and author. Weber said:

“As a Priestess in a diverse, urban community, I’m terrified that one morning I’ll wake up to see that the next victim of police violence was one of my students, community members, or friends–or one of their children. I won’t be neutral. I won’t be quiet.

“The rally was big, tight, and peaceful. We streamed into and blocked traffic up 5th Avenue to and along 34th street, then up to 42nd street, blocking Times Square. Some drivers were losing it at their wheels. Others honked or raised fists in solidarity. Whole buses had to sit and wait. I hoped passengers would get off and join us. Maybe some did. The sit-in in Times Square was the most peaceful part. We sang, but most people sat in silence. It’s was the most calm and quiet I’ve ever seen in that space.”

Portland, Oregon

T. Thorn Coyle, is a magic worker, author, spiritual director and agitator for justice. Coyle said:

“I could call upon Pagan ethics, and my Goddesses and Gods, as reasons for activism, but frankly, during these times to not stand up against injustice? That would be a slap in the face to my very humanity. I do this simply because I feel in my bones that it is the right thing to do. I cannot do otherwise.”

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Portland rally July 2016 [Photo Credit: T. Thorn Coyle]

Coyle wrote a personal account of her experience at the Portland rally in an essay titled “To Run In, Freeze or Flee.” Briefly she said:

“Around 45 minutes into tonight’s gathering in Portland, a man pulled a gun on us. It turns out he is a Trump supporter and right-wing agitator. I was right near him, saw the gun, saw him unsnap the holster, and turned to get some children to back up. Once the kids were safely taken by some other adults, I was still close to him, trying to decide if I was needed. Then the ‘hit the ground’ call went up.

“I am grateful to the level headed people who just kept walking toward him, getting him away from the crowd. As the small group walked him further off, others of us were asked to form a cordon around the protest. We did.

“As the Black man who asked us to said, ‘I don’t want to get killed keeping you safe. I’m willing to die for you, but it’s your job to hold this line.’

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Alley Valkyrie, a Feri initiate, radical polytheist, columnist for The Wild Hunt. was at that same rally. Valkyrie said:

“I went to the rally for many reasons. I consider it my responsibility as someone who benefits from white supremacy and colonialism to speak up against oppression and state violence against Black folks, I knew many of the folks who had organized the rally, and its very much a community issue as well as a national issue given the racist history of Portland and the history of racist violence that our local police department has engaged in over the years. I have close friends in town who are afraid for themselves and their children due to police violence and I wanted to support them and stand beside them. I also have specific orders from the gods I worship to stand up against oppression and white supremacy, and going to the march fit right in with those orders.”

Portland rally [Courtesy T. Thorn Coyle]

Portland rally [Courtesy T. Thorn Coyle]

Valkyrie added, “The rally started out real well. Several hundred people gathered in Pioneer Square in downtown Portland, several leaders from the Black community spoke and engaged the crowd, and then we took the streets and marched through downtown, blocking traffic (most folks in cars were supportive), and eventually pausing at in front of the police headquarters where more folks started to speak again.

“And then out of nowhere a well-known right-wing agitator named Michael Strickland pulled a gun on the crowd and waved it around several times in a threatening manner. He was agitated because folks asked him to leave, as he was filming the crowd for malicious reasons. He runs a right-wing youtube station that he uses as a platform for harassing local activists, and has allied himself with self-proclaimed fascists who doxx local activists.

“I was nearby but blocked from sight of the gunman, but my partner was right in front of Strickland and had a gun pointed and brandished at him. Despite the fact that this occurred right across the street from the police station and there was heavy police presence at the march, it took the police around 20 minutes to arrest Strickland. Once he was arrested, the march continued through downtown, blocking the streets for another few hours. I went home at that point due to back pain, but the march then proceeded to block off the Morrison Bridge for over an hour.”

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The Wild Hunt will have continuing coverage of the protests in the days ahead.

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Note: Michael Strickland, the man accused of brandishing a weapon at the rally, has been charged with two class A felonies after being arrested and released Friday morning on his own recognizance without bail.

Cara Schulz

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Cara Schulz is a journalist and author living in Minnesota with her husband and cat. She has previously written for PAGAN+politics, PNC-Minnesota, and Patheos. Her work has appeared in several books by Bibliotheca Alexandrina and she's the author of Martinis & Marshmallows: A Field Guide to Luxury Tent Camping and (Almost) Foolproof Mead Making. She loves red wine, camping, and has no tattoos.
  • Lailoken Scathach

    My heart goes out to the friends families and partners of 5 white police officers who wee gunned down. – #BlueLIvesMstter

    Truly Sad,

  • hök

    Alton was a sex offender and a criminal

    • And had served his time and was attempting to support his family, with the full permission of the business where he was selling his C.D.s. That you think his history is in any way relevant to whether or not he deserved to be shot dead for that is itself eloquent testimony to the reality of the poison of racism running all through our society.

      I don’t know who you are, hök. But I know what you are: a racist provocateur and troll.

      Your comments are as welcome in my community as a turd in a punchbowl.

      • ❝Only in death, it seems, can a person on the sex offender registry be considered a human worthy of love and sympathy.❞
        Alton Sterling: When a Sex Offender Gets a Candlelight Vigil

        • I’m sure you have some kind of a point here as well. But let me lay this out for you: my bottom line is against lynching–whether with bullets or ropes–for anyone.

          I’d break it down into smaller units of meaning for you, Neo, but I have a very strong sense either you get it already or you’re pretending to yourself that you don’t, in order to push some agenda that’s too ugly for me to want to look at it up close.

          • No agenda, just an article I thought you’d appreciate.

  • Empress Legacy

    This is just a few of thousands who have been gunned down by police. If people’s lives

    REALLY mattered, there would have never been a need to say “Black Lives Matter”. The phrase was BEFORE the gov funded group. But nobody sees that though, and that’s the true tragedy. The ones killed ALL had families but the attitude shows that didn’t matter. Poor Tamir Rice, Treyvon Martin, and all the other young ones being hunted. I feel for their parents.

  • Damiana

    Once again, white Pagans go to rallies because it’s the sexy thing to do, it’s acessible and doesn;t take that much time. What are they doing to effect sustained change? Those who commit, either professionally or as volunteers on a regular basis, to better address and balance racial injustice? From social workers to counselors to making lunches in the summer for hungry African American and Latino children, to tutoring to working with kids, dealing with housing issues -those are stories I’d like to read about.

    Practitioners who do ongoing work, whether on their altars, with their groups, as a solitary in their backyard, on the steps of courthouses, in the parking lots of police depts- it’d be great if some of them wanted to speak about what they do. There have to be magical practitioners (besides the same ol’ same ol’ names we see in this blog) who do more than go to protests. How about Melanie Hexen and her coven – is this a subject they’ve been addressing and would talk about it publicly?

    • T Thorn Coyle

      I also love hearing/reading those stories about the work people are doing. I find them inspiring. WH relies on people to alert them to those stories – they don’t have the staff or money to seek them all out. If you know of people doing this work, if you hear these stories, I suggest sending an email to Heather.

      I can also say that I personally know that several of the people quoted here all do community-based work. Why would you assume that all we do is go to protests? Protests are important. So is community organizing. They are part of an eco-system. Not everyone can make it out to marches, but those who can? Why shouldn’t we?

      If you want my bona fides: worked in a soup kitchen for 23 years, four of them full time. Done hospice work. Helped people get housing. Worked with local community organizers on police violence issues. Showed up with families in need at court, at hearings, at press conferences. I could go on, but I don’t really need to.

      You shouldn’t need our credentials just because we headed out to an action to show hurting communities that we support them, and we care about their lives.

      The important thing here is not the people who were quoted in this article. It isn’t about us. It is about the lives stolen and the people left behind, grieving. It’s about the changes that need to happen in our country. It’s about waking up to the multi-layered reality of racism, economic injustice, misogyny, and oppression that people live with every single day.

    • Tony Rella

      I’m a therapist and have worked with low-income folks for the past three years, many of whom have been of color. And I find the work important, but it’s incredibly disheartening at times to know that I am really doing my best just to help people survive a very oppressive system. I find it heartening and exciting to know that more people are taking action to push for change and dismantling that system.

    • “Sexy.”

      I have to tell you, out of all the ways I’ve been feeling this week, doing anti-racism work at protest rallies and elsewhere, “sexy” has not been on the list. Even a little bit.

      I am not going to trot out my bona fides, either, because frankly, I am not the point, and I know it. Listing my ongoing work, or any white person’s ongoing work, is playing white savior.

      To hell with that.

      • Damiana

        I’m not asking you to. I’m talking about news stories. And yes, sexy as in trendy.

    • kenofken

      We cannot view this as a zero-sum thing where people are either off galavanting at rallies or else doing “real work” on social justice problems. If we were to somehow study the demographics of it, I thing we would find that “in the streets” activism, especially of the regular sort, is done by a distinct minority of us. I also wouldn’t characterize it as being necessarily accessible or glamorous work. Many of things are held during working hours, in all weather and sometimes hours of driving away. They can last for days or even months in the case of Occupy. It’s not particularly safe work. Some police agencies are very quick to resort to the baton or pepper spray. This country is full of heavily armed extremists loons who are drawn to protests either as self-styled heroes of the cause or counter-protesters. Probably any sizable public gathering these days is at least briefly considered as a target by some terrorist of some stripe. In short, attending rallies puts you at a small but very definite chance of being shot, trampled, tear gassed, arrested, flagged in some government database as a potential threat etc.

      It’s not work that most of us are willing or able to do on a regular basis. But it is critically important work. All of the behind-the-scenes volunteer type work is critically important as well, but if you’re not pushing hard against the corrupt system causing the misery, you’re wasting your efforts and probably helping to enable the injustice. It’s like putting band aids on a wound where gangrene has already took hold. Of course protests without follow up work are just noise.

      Real social justice progress, whatever the cause, requires two basic steps. One, you have to win over the hearts and minds of a majority of the population to see the injustice and to take it seriously enough to act upon. Two, you have to make governing and day to day life impossible for those in power who dig in their heels to preserve injustice. That’s the whole game. It’s not theoretical astrophysics, just a lot of work and persistence and focus. Racism, and even the broader context of economic injustice are problems with a million different threads and components, and we need everyone working whatever pieces of it they can manage. Start anywhere you can and keep going, and yes, we should write about and celebrate many the many different efforts without downplaying or overplaying any one of them.

      As to magical working, I’m all for that too. although it has to be part a larger strategy which will require plenty of hands-on effort in the mundane world to make a difference. Even if we accept the story of Dion Fortune and the New Forest coven waging the Magical Battle of Britain at face value (and it’s a damn cool story), we have to concede that folks like Rosie the Riveter, Alan Turing and the Allied forces did a bit to help defeat Hitler….

      • Damiana

        I never said it was a zero sum game. I’d like to see more stories of magical practitioners who are consistently working on social justice issues that go beyond marches and protests. I don’t believe that practitioners have to be involved in social justice work, but many are, either professionally, magically or as volunteers, or some combo thereof.

  • Kenya Coviak

    I was honored to be quoted in this. Let me first say that I extend my sympathy for all who have lost their lives in the past years as these systematic scenes continue to play out. Also, It is dismaying to see the undercurrent of racism and classicism in many of the online comments in many articles on this topic. Even here, it rises.

    In respectful response to Damiana, just wanted to say my sandals are firmly on the ground and in the trenches and have been for many years. There are quite a few of us in Michigan who are doing actual work with schools, help agencies, and community programs to enhance, ameliorate, and change the antagonistic and oppressive circumstances of all peoples.

    In regards to ongoing work, it does happen. In Michigan many of those Pagans who could not make the rally, were involved in a world wide coordinated action with the ATR faiths the next evening. You may have heard of it.

    The stories can only be written when they are known, though. If you would like to see it covered, I stand with you in solidarity in the hope that you will reach out to the news agencies to cover them. Or perhaps even write them yourself, or interview them. We are here. The Wild Hunt, PBN News Network, and other ezines and spaces where thoughts flow await people like you, the activist, the one who speaks up, to add your voice and pen.

    • Damiana

      Thank you for your thoughtful response. I’m not a blogger or a journalist, so I won’t be writing the stories. I will continue to ask that they be covered, beyond the trendy protests. I also understand that many of those deeply engaged with community work may keep their spiritual practices separate and therefore unknown. But even stories using anon practitioners would be illuminating.