TWH – Now that the season has turned and we are nearing the end of the 2017, we look back, one last time, to review this historic 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?
TWH — Jewish facilities have been targeted with vandalism and bomb threats in recent weeks, and that has some of their Pagan neighbors on edge even as they stand ready to assist. Hundreds of headstones were damaged in two Jewish cemeteries this month, and 100 bomb threats have been reportedly called into Jewish community centers and temples in the United States and Canada in what’s being called “telephone terrorism.” It was enough to get a mention by President Trump during his first speech before a joint session of Congress, although those remarks have been criticized for not outlining to plan to stop the attacks. While most of the bomb threats targeted community centers in the eastern United States, they were located in a total of 33 states as well as two provinces of Canada. The calls may have originated overseas, authorities believe, and used voice-masking technology, as in this example posted online.
RALEIGH, NC — On Mar 23 North Carolina’s governor signed into law the Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act. The bill is primarily known for its measures, which block local governments from allowing transgender persons to use bathrooms that do not match the biological sex as recorded on their birth certificates. The Wild Hunt takes a close look at the bill and gets reactions from Pagans living in North Carolina. Overview of Bill
The Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act was created in response to the expansion of the city of Charlotte’s nondiscrimination ordinance, which includes protections for marital and familial status, sexual orientation, gender expression and gender identity. State Republican lawmakers said that Charlotte’s new ordinance would give men access to women’s bathrooms and locker rooms. Supporters of Charlotte’s nondiscrimination ordinance said it provided much needed civil protects for vulnerable minorities. The new ordinance was set to take effect on April 1.
Over the past weekend, Covenant of the Goddess held its 40 year anniversary MerryMeet event in Ontario, California. The weekend included its annual two-day Grand Council, during which the consensus-based organization conducted its internal business including the election of officers. After a tumultuous and uncomfortable beginning to 2015, the organization did come back to internally address what had happened. A break-out group was asked to review and present the organization’s revised social justice statement and make further recommendations. The result of the meeting was the creation of a permanent internal Social Justice committee to address the problems of racial inequity and systemic racism.
[Laura LaVoie is a contributor to The Juggler and PNC-GA. She lives in Atlanta, GA with her partner and cats, blogging about brewing beer, tiny houses and Hellenic polytheism.]
I was a Unitarian for a while. I went to church and enjoyed the community. Then we got a new pastor and I didn’t like that church anymore, so I stopped going. But the Unitarian Church was one of the first times in my life I had really been exposed to the concept of Social Justice.