Of course, it is impossible to say exactly what will be big news in 2019 as we collectively stand just on the other side of the threshold of this New Year. But the news today can affect us for weeks to come. Here in the United States, the potential for continued political turmoil hangs thick in the air with a partial government shutdown still in effect, the Mueller investigation ongoing, and major shift in the House of Representatives soon to occur. We know that oil prices, pipelines and carbon taxes are major issues in Canada. Europe faces Brexit and Latin America and Africa both face financial challenges.
WOLVERHAMPTON, England –The political fight over whether the United Kingdom should remain part of the European Union or not was bruising to people on both sides, a situation which has been echoed in other world events such as last year’s presidential election in the United States. One British Quaker has found what she feels is an important reminder of the common ancestry humans share, and she’d like Witches and other Pagans to join her in expressing that bond: the power of bread. Rachel Arnold “discovered Paganism and the power of Witches,” she recalls, “while recovering from a traumatic experience in the Remain campaign.” It was during that healing process that she hit upon bread as a common thread for all humanity, and began to express that understanding through painting and poetry. From there she decided that breaking bread should be a movement, one in which people share that common history in spontaneous gatherings.
TWH – Now that the season has turned and we are nearing the end of the 2016, we look back, one last time, to review this extraordinary year. What happened? What didn’t happen? What events shaped our thoughts and guided our actions? In our collective worlds, both big and small, what were the major discussions?
In these last few weeks, we have witnessed not only natural disasters of flood, wind, and fire in the North America, Europe and Asia but also human-made events that have left many of us — based on broadcast and social media — wondering what type of world is unfolding around us. We’ve witnessed a hate-driven massacre of historic proportions in Orlando that united the civil world in mourning. We have seen a rebuking of globalization while also ripping off the veneer of tolerance across Europe, exposing rampant and unhealed xenophobia. We may be witnessing the shattering of the United Kingdom with Northern Ireland and Scotland as well as the British overseas territory of Gibraltar questioning their continued home under the British crown. And this week, the Daesh attacks in Istanbul reignited our mourning. The assault in Ataturk airport is itself an act of hate against the liberties of the West.
UK – It’s been five days now since the U.K. had its vote to decide whether or not it should be a part of the European Union. The Leave result was close, won by an overall majority of 52%. The Remain camp — the favourites to win — was shocked, saddened, and angry. It is no exaggeration to say that this result has not only torn the nation apart, but also exposed deep rifts which have have existed for many years. After the vote, social media went into turmoil with different groups of people turning on each other.