Here in New York City, on Thursday, September 30, New Yorkers Against Religion-Based Bigotry (NYARBB) will hold a meeting on the topic of “American Connections to African Witchhunts.” If you are interested in attending, please see details and RSVP here.
Below is an expanded version of our pamphlet on this topic, with links to more information.
Throughout Africa — mainly in Christian countries — vast numbers of children have been abandoned by their parents, or worse, often maimed or tortured, on suspicion of being “witches.”
The witch hunts aren’t just a resurgence of indigenous beliefs. They are a result of beliefs encouraged by a new and rapidly growing worldwide religious movement within the Pentecostal/charismatic branch of Christianity.
Aggressive crusades against alleged malevolent “witches” are encouraged by the “spiritual warfare” doctrines of some major leaders of one of the world’s fastest-growing international religious movements, the “apostolic and prophetic” wing of Pentecostal/Charismatic Christianity.
Recently there has been quite a hullabaloo against the construction of Park 51, a Muslim community center, on the alleged grounds that it is somehow “disrespectful” to build a “mosque” two blocks north of the World Trade Center site.
We consider this notion to be complete nonsense.
For a long time I’ve neglected this blog, mainly because I’ve been extremely busy. I’ve tended to post about our events only on our Meetup site.
We’ve done lots of things during the past year. One of these days, I should post here a brief history of at least some of the things we’ve been doing since my last post here.
To make this blog less time-consuming to manage, I’ve decided to disable comments here. There are now thousands of unmoderated comments here, mostly spam. I just don’t have time to deal with them and don’t expect I ever will.
So, from henceforth, instead of allowing comments here, I’ll end most posts with a link to a relevant thread on the NYARBB message board where you can post comments.
If/when New York’s marriage equality bill passes, the fight will not be over. Next, the religious right wing will almost certainly respond with a ballot referendum against same-sex marriage, possibly even a state constitutional amendment similar to California’s infamous Proposition 8, which got passed in 2008. In the meantime, the religious right wing is now focusing heavily on New York State to stop the bill from being passed in the first place.
Below, I’ll look at some information about how the religious right wing fought successfully for Proposition 8 in California, and about their plans for New York and New Jersey.
A bill allowing same-sex marriage passed overwhelmingly in the New York State Assembly, but faces a much tighter race in the New York State Senate. The religious right wing is now very active, here in New York, against the bill. To get the bill passed, we’ll need lots of people to speak out.
First, find out who your State Senator is, and find out the phone numbers of your State Senator’s offices, by entering your street address and ZIP code in the text fields at the top left corner of the following page:
Kim Catullo, longtime partner of Christine Quinn, the openly lesbian speaker of the New York City Council, has said (in a May 22 CNN news story about same-sex marriage):
“It is really encouraging to see what’s happening around the country in places where you really wouldn’t expect it, like Iowa,” says Quinn’s longtime partner, Kim Catullo. “To be in a place like New York and not have it just doesn’t seem to make sense.”
What’s wrong with New York? Three things:
On Thursday, May 14, we will hold a dinner meeting devoted to Dialogue between Pagan Witches and Satanists.
Please see details and RSVP here.
This past fall, unfortunately, I once again had to drop all efforts to launch this group, because I was too busy with a new job.
But there is now some very good news: As of a month ago, I happened to find a very passionate assistant organizer, Noelle. So, hopefully, we can now, finally, begin to get this group off the ground.
Noelle, thanks very much for your enthusiasm and help so far.
There have been many updates to the NYARBB site this past month or so. Please feel free to post comments here about the changes. Below are some of the main new items:
This blog is now being moved from its original home on WordPress.com (nyarbb.wordpress.com) to its present server.
The NYC Pagan Pride festival is coming up very soon: Saturday, September 27, in Battery Park, 11 AM to 5 PM.
NYARBB’s nascent Committee Against Satanic Panics will be distributing literature in the vicinity of the event and, hopefully, doing a little networking.
Summary of relevant dates/times:
- NYARBB meeting before event: Thursday, September 27, at 7:30 PM
- The Pagan Pride event itself: Saturday, September 27, at 11 AM to 5 PM
- NYARBB follow-up meeting: Thursday, October 9, at 7:30 PM
The following NYARBB position statements, formerly displayed here on this blog, have now been moved to the new NYARBB main site:
Comments welcome, here on this blog, in response to all the above position statements.
NYARBB is no longer just a concept. Last week we began doing serious outreach.
A major focus of ours, for now, will be on opposing the spread of “Illuminati” claims, which are similar to The Protocols of the Elders of Zion except that, instead of Jews, “Illuminati” claims typically scapegoat Pagans, occultists, “Satanists,” and atheists, and typically also allege that modern social reforms, such as feminism and gay rights, are part of an elite conspiracy to destroy America. Though currently a fringe phenomenon for the most part, we feel that such bigoted claims, in the era of the Internet, should not be ignored, especially when they are promoted outside of the religious right wing circles from which they emanate.
Feedback about the About NYARBB page (now on the new main website of NYARBB) should be posted here.
[This post last updated Thursday, September 18, 2008.]