2016 has been a rough year of violence and loss. Every year brings such happenings, but this one felt particularly dark. Yet there remains some small twinkle of light. As of this writing, Keith Richards is still here to give us all hope that immortality is indeed possible. In 2017, there will be a new president of the United States of America.
TWH –After a high-profile campaign that lasted far longer than many Americans might have preferred, Donald J. Trump won the U.S. presidential election yesterday. While Pagans and polytheists held widely divergent views about who they wanted in the White House, it is now time to consider what a Trump presidency means to members of minority religious groups. Before turning to the national election, we look at the local level, where politics begins and where many candidates are tested and vetted. The Wild Hunt has been following the campaigns of two members of our collective communities: Heathen Matt Orlando, who was running for a seat in the House of Representatives, and Cara Schulz, a Hellenic polytheist (and Wild Hunt reporter) running for the Burnsville City Council. Orlando, running in Michigan’s ninth district, was not successful.
The term “values voters” has long described a specific portion of the American electorate. These voters are understood to express values that stem from their religious views, which are overwhelmingly Christian and socially conservative. In 2006, the movement made itself official by holding its first Value Voters Summit, an annual convention with the mission to “help inform and mobilize the bedrock values of traditional marriage, religious liberty, sanctity of life, and limited government that make America strong.” American media has followed suit, and it consistently refers to voters who hold these priorities by their preferred moniker “value voters.”
The term, however, is inaccurate and dishonest. To begin with, it assumes that only those who vote for the conservative Christian issues, such as eliminating legal abortion, opposing marriage equality for the LGBTQ community, and the rather peculiar definition of “religious liberty” expressed in the recent spate of religious freedom restoration acts, are voting based on their values.
[Here is our October version of Unleash the Hounds, a monthly article fearing links to stories outside of our collective communities. If you enjoy this article and others like this, please consider donating to The Wild Hunt. We have 13 days left to meet our goal, and you make it possible for us to continue. The Wild Hunt is your community news service. Donate today.]
NORTH DAKOTA — It was announced this week that a judge “dismissed the riot charges” against journalist Amy Goodman for covering the protest efforts to stop construction of the Dakota Access pipeline.
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