Pagan + Politics’ Eric Robbins: This is Why I’m Embarrassed to be a Pagan

Over at the supposedly fair and balanced (but actually leftist) Pagans and Politics political site I found this awful bit of ignorant propaganda by some Wiccan named Eric Robbins that is in essence a reworking of the Illuminati conspiracy theories aimed at suckers, but this time aimed at attacking Jesus freaks who may have cheated on their wives.

You know, like 70+ percent of Americans.

Of course his source for all of this conspiracy mongering aside from the 9/11 “truth” movement and too much time on the Internet is Rachel Maddow, known far and wide for her fair portrayal of Christians, Conservatives and anyone who hasn’t jerked off to Obama.

But this, for all you Wiccans who like to complain about me, is why I am often embarrassed by being associated with the neo-Pagan movement and you should be too:

Religion and politics have been overlapping in the news lately, with occult practitioners exposed for their involvement in scandal  after  scandal. Men near the top of America’s political power structure have been found to be closely allied with, if not in fact members of, a secretive international religious organization. Their rationale, their goals, both specific and general, are closely guarded secrets, and it appears that they shift their holdings around so as to obscure the extent of their power.


The scandals that I reference above are closely tied to The Family, a secretive and powerful international organization apparently intent on steering politics worldwide. Where is the outrage from those mainstream religions that fear the occult? Primarily, and very much to their credit, the lone voice of disapproval from the mainstream religious community seems to be the Interfaith Alliance. Rev. Dr. Welton Gaddy of the alliance was highly critical  of the secrecy surrounding The Family on last night’s Rachel Maddow Show, saying, “When you get in that position, and you put yourself in an insulated, isolated, secretive kind of conversation…we know what’s right for this country, and we’re going to do whatever we have to do to see that this country does right.” Gaddy goes on to criticize The Family’s apparent scorn for the law, as evidenced by the C Street enclave’s handling of the marital infidelity and financial ethics scandals. For me, the news here is not that there are affairs and ethics violations among our political leaders, or even that those leaders are protected in this by being Christian, but rather that the scandals have pushed an enormous occult organization out into the daylight, and Pagans have no part in the story.

Yes, a well thought out and not paranoid position at all. But it is how he ties this bit of leftist agi-prop together that is the true source of the embarrassment:

I would contend that since secrecy is the key ingredient of the occult, in plain English we’re talking about secrecy policies in organized religious groups.

By that definition unions, ACORN, and the sorority your sister belongs to are all occult organizations. As an aside, if The Family is so secret a) how do we know so much about them and b) why can I link to their website where their “secretive agenda” is literally spelled out for the public to view?

But more to the point, Robbins’ definition of the occult is an illiterate one, indeed typical of Wiccans and mainstream neo-Paganism in general who have embraced the same “socially conservative” anti-Occultism that drove the Satanic Panic of the 80s and 90s. There are no actual secret occult organizations (which should be clear since these conspiracy theorists can be intimately familiar with who is in the groups they criticize) and secrecy as one of the pillars of magical practice has little to do with the “they are everywhere” paranoia of  Robbins and his ilk. Almost every supposed secret society these people rail against is open to the public and you could join right now if you wanted to. The O.T.O., the Freemasons, The Rosicrucians (which I have recently joined) and thousands of other “occult” groups are merely private clubs where people may or may not study various aspects of occultism.

Again, literacy is the problem. Because the word occult at its root means secret, the role players who pretend to be informed on these things believe that means the body of knowledge and beliefs considered part of the occult are secret. This is not true. In fact, for the erstwhile occultist looking to fill his or her personal grimoire, some of the best references from which “occult” knowledge can be gleaned are the academic works concerning the occult and not the imagined synagogues of Satan that populate the mythography of modern neo-paganism.

E.M. Butler’s Ritual Magic which is an academic survey of the history of Western magical practices contains many translations of first hand sources of this supposed secret knowledge as does A.E. Waite’s Book of Black Magic (sometimes published under the name The Book of Spells) which was a literary criticism of known medieval grimoires. More “occult” knowledge can be found in Richard Cavendish’s lurid The Black Arts than can ever be gained by the entire Llewellyn book catalog. Many of the best books written on occult knowledge are authored by people with no initiation into these “occult” groups.

Which of course means that since scholars and artist have been dispensing the “secret” knowledge of the occult for hundreds of years the idea that occult literally means secret is a fundamental misunderstanding of the world Robbins supposedly occupies.

Now, there are already defenders of Robbins whining that what Robbins was doing was a bit of literary Akido, turning the “Xtian” fear of the occult on its head, but they know this isn’t the case. Robbins has accepted these same Christians’ views of occult conspiracy and then added on the modern pretense of the division between Pagans and “occultists” designed to unite Pagans like himself with liberal Christians into a leftist-style religious identity whose commonality is fear of conservative Christians. Never mind that it was conservative Christians and their magazines like Cornerstone who ultimately debunked many of the Satanic Panic claims, while liberal Christians continue to allow this sort of conspiracy mongering to fester until this day. This stance is boilerplate unfortunately, but it has consequences.

Here’s a comment I received just recently on a post from a Wiccan who was offended that I dared connect Wicca … with Witchcraft:

melissa said,

on March 12th, 2010 at 1:08 pm

just thought i’d throw out there that not all pagans practice black magic or witchcraft. black magic being an intent to cause harm upon someone or affect someones will. you make it sound like pagans are a bunch of harry potter freaks. its more along the lines of energy focus, for me at least. and spells and magic is not what being pagan is about so called “spells” are more like prayers and spiritual awareness. im not going home rto sit around a culdron and play with spices, more normal than u think, so why would a “good” pagan care about a black magic pagan when in all honesty im terrified of black magic and prefer to not be accioated with it.

In other words, Wiccans are no different than Episcopalians. I have often put forward that Wiccans aren’t really Witches but until recently Wiccans fought me on it. Now they are in essence denying their involvement in Witchcraft, ritual magic, and occultism in general. Indeed, now they hurl these words around as if their insults. Understand these “free thinking”  pagans are embracing the same views and movement that claims they are part of an evil conspiracy, which proves that it is true that  your mind can be so open your brains will fall out. As embarrassed as I was by pagans when they were running around calling themselves “Dragon Moon Drowheart” the garish scene of them cavorting with Unitarian Universalists and decrying “the occult” has shamed me to the core.

P.E.T.A Fights for the Right of Rabid Raccoons to Maul Your Family (P.E.T.A. Also Kills Animals)

Angry Raccoon

This story is near to my heart because I was once almost mauled by a rabid raccoon while on one of my day long rambles through the suburbs of New Jersey. I was only saved from a series of painful rabies shots by my penchant for unusual clothing, including 17 inch leather boots which I thought were quite dashing. They also proved to be raccoon proof which has solidified my preference for tall leather boots ever since.  It’s a long story but suffice to say the parks and pathways of New Jersey are not a great place to run into a foaming at the mouth animal, and if you do running across the nearest deep stream will buy you enough time to make your escape.

So when Tennessee Republican Steve King let his Twitter followers know that he ended up putting down a raccoon that kept trying to claw its way into his house I understood that he had to do what he had to do to protect his family. A raccoon is about the size of a medium sized dog and weighs in around 40 pounds. That’s a lot of teeth and claws coming your way if things go wrong. So I personally think King was in the right.

P.E.T.A. disagrees:

He (King) told Roll Call that he was on a Feb. 9 conference call when the raccoon returned.

King grabbed the Desert Eagle — “It’s the one I had handy,” he told HOH — and went after the raccoon, which fled. But King caught up, fired and killed the creature.

“We can’t have an animal that might be sick, might be rabid, out there,” King said, adding that his granddaughters often play in the area where he spotted the raccoon. “That’s just what has to happen when you live out here in the country.”

Problem is, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) late this morning has criticized King, with spokesman Jaime Zalac saying King should not have dispatched “a small animal seeking warmth in another blizzard,” a second Roll Call piece relates.

“I would hope he’s not on any (House) committees that make decisions regarding cruel and unusual punishment. Decent people would call animal control for help, not get on Twitter to boast about having a really, really big gun,” Zalac said.

This from an organization that routinely kills animals they take in for their supposed adoption program. Public records show that P.E.T.A. found homes for only 1 out of every 300 animals it’s “no kill” shelter takes in. P.E.T.A. itself admits to killing some 95.8% of the animals they got their hands on in 2008. None of those animals were potentially rabid.

More importantly this response shows that far from being nature lovers P.E.T.A. and their supporters are disconnected from the very natural world they claim to love. Raccoons are dangerous, only people who haven’t seen one think otherwise. Nature is struggle, an endless cycle of beauty and violence that makes life possible and the disconnect from natural law creates people like the Jaime Zalac who have no idea how nature works. People like Zalac believe man has tamed nature but in reality we hide from it, huddling behind a flimsy barricade called civilization that can only offer us temporary shelter.

Raccoons shelter from blizzards in the wild all the time, they don’t need to come into your house. It is unusual behavior which may indicate that the creature is rabid. P.E.T.A. thinks in that situation you should throw caution to the wind and allow your family to be mauled. People who truly love nature know better.

h/t N.R.A.

The Depraved Indifference of Pagan FM’s Deirdre Hebert and Why it Matters

Though I have not blogged about the case, I am a supporter of Rifqa Bary, the teen runaway who fled her militant Islamist family after converting to Christianity. It is not my purpose to cover that case here, but please see the great work Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch and Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs have done on getting Rifqa’s story out.

Deirdre Hebert, the host of Pagan FM, which I am only aware of through some contact Pagans Against Child Abuse had with her in the past (more on that later) is not a supporter. Someone emailed me a comment she made that said Rifqa was a runaway who was merely afraid her parents were going to “freak out” on her so she should be returned home. In that thread she also claimed only “fundies” cared about this. My comment back was simply this:

Deirdre – She wasn’t afraid her parents would “freak” she was afraid they’d kill her. Literally. Honor killings are a serious problem

Our comments, of course, went to our Facebook profiles and you can see the debate that ensued with Deirdre when see decided to “educate” me about the “indoctrination” of Rifqa by those evil Christians. She also claimed I was a criminal. At some point she decided to do take this conversation to the emails and began a long private correspondence with me by sending me an email with the subject line “Stop Being a Fucking Moron and Listen and Read” which is too long to reproduce but I will forward to anyone who wants to read through. In it she makes several points that I want to use to illustrate the intellectual vapidity and rampant amorality of the leftist mainstream neo-pagan movement:

1) Christians “indoctrinated” Rifqa to hate poor innocent Muslims. Christians also committed more atrocities than poor innocent Muslims and I am a secret Christian for not wanting Rifqa sent back to the parents who blinded her and threatened to kill her.

2) Rifqa Bary is a liar and all children who claim they are abused should be left in the homes of their alleged abusers until we’re sure they are actually being abused.

3) I insulted her out of the box by writing the sentence above (which readers can see is simply mild disagreement), thus the venom she vomited on me over a day and a half was well deserved.

4) Myself and people like me are the cause of her immaturity and inability to agree to disagree sans meltdown.

5) Anyone to the right of George Soros is a fascist and I should get my news from the known anti-Semites at Media Matters.

Her first point is at odds with the facts, Rifqa herself, and a quick perusal of any site that aggregates news involving Muslims such as Religion of Peace. This is politically correct posturing based largely on ignorance of Islam and inexperience with both Muslims and American Christians. The racism of Islam regarding Black Americans was exposed in my coverage of the Sandra Hall murder, and the innate misogyny of unreformed Islam is so blatant that one need not argue the point. The idea that Islam is being smeared by those evil Christians and Jews who spread Islamophobia is utter nonsense. Muslims cause Islamophbia with every call for Jewicide, endorsement of wife-beating, every forced conversion, every honor killing and praise for terrorism.

But Hebert’s rosy fantasy about Islam is actually a symptom of a larger problem with the neo-Pagan community and the cosmography they have cobbled together using neo-Marxism as a guide. Her latter three points are also simply expressions of this world view wherein the world is divided into progressive and “regressive” camps and the “regressive” is de facto evil and at fault for all conflict. Hebert’s charge that I “insulted her first” came after she deleted the conversation on her page in a transparent attempt to alter history for her fellow ideological travelers who she knows will never view my page or this post. This, of course, came after she herself trolled a news story with a series of insulting quotes aimed at the Christian supporters of Rifqa. They, however, deserve derision – they are “fundies” after all.

The idea that Rifqa simply must be lying about her parents, and that risking the girl’s life to prove some cheap political point about “radical Christians” is acceptable is the depraved indifference of Dierdre Herbert that I want to point out, as it isn’t unique to Herbert but it is a feature of the modern neo-Pagan movement whose mainstream is on the very fringe of leftism. There have been dozens of honor killings in America. There have been hundreds of Muslim-driven acts of violence, vandalism and mayhem often targeting the very moderate Muslims Deirdre Herbert claims to be defending. But she instead sides with radical Islamists in an attempt to be on the “right” side of this issue. Herbert doesn’t actually care if Rifqa is in danger, but is interested in peddling a made up version of the story in which Christians lure a teen to their cult compound and turn her against her loving parents.

She has gone so far as to claim I was “advocating breaking the law” by supporting Rifqa’s struggle to stay alive.

This is a far cry from my first contact with Herbert, which happened after the Pagans Against Child Abuse exposure of child exploitation being facilitated and covered up by the owners of PaganSpace. Again through emails (which I will make available to anyone interested, Deirdre Hebert and I came up on opposite sides of the issue, with her claiming I was promoting “vigilantism” for promoting the idea that adult Pagans be alert for predators in our midst who use the loose structure of the various faiths within to prey on teens who make up the majority of new converts. In other words, we should report men who attempt to lure teens into sexual situations under the guise of “worshipping the goddess” to the police, and remain vigilant against what is a threat to the legitimacy of neo-Paganism. PACA was, in Hebert’s estimation, “ruining reputations” for no good reason.

Hardly the stance one expects from a person so concerned with law and order in the Rifqa Bary case. Unless Hebert has had an extreme change of heart since our first contact (and after our discussion I don’t think she has) it would seem that Herbert’s guiding philosophy is to simply take the position of the Left on any argument, then attempt to find reasons to prove the position she has already decided is right. These reasons will then always boil down to me and anyone to her right simply being a fascist. PACA itself has been branded a “conservative” group because in modern neo-Pagan morality it is seen as something Conservative Christians are involved in, so for the modern Wiccan (as an example) even attempting to work against criminality is anti-Pagan.

The anti-Conservative, anti-Christian/Western stance that is considered part of Pagan identity (which is no longer a religion but a sub-culture) is at the root of Pagan support for Islamism in general and the parents of Rifqa Bary in particular.

This pretension, this moral cowardice and herd instinct masquerading as free thinking would be little more than an inconvenience to right-leaning Pagans and a source of amusing anecdotes for non-Pagans. But this attitude has consequences. There is an indifference to actual suffering in the neo-Pagan movement that has long, long ago crossed the line into being depraved. One in ten Pagans I dealt with directly after the PaganSpace exposure even cared that grooming of children was going on. Some claimed it was acceptable, that I was simply a “prude” for not being OK with some 50-year-old claiming a 14-year-old girl needed to service him sexually as part of the worship of whatever goddess he was pretending to serve. Deirdre simply didn’t care at all, instead branding our efforts “too militant” for her to be at ease with.

Here’s a quote from an eamil she sent to one of the PACA members:

I was emailing Rob a bit. I’m going to be spending more time on your web site. I definitely respect the mission of protecting children. I come from a family directly impacted by child abuse from a clergy member, and your mission is very important.

What puts me a bit ill at ease is that PACA has seemed a bit militant in methodology. While I understand the philosophy of erring on the side of safety of children, I tend to be on the side of caution, seeking to cause harm to no-one.

I know that the incidents with Pagan Space was well-intentioned, and that the way things turned out weren’t entirely your fault, but it is sad that there aren’t better ways to handle things.

We’re militant … in our methodology of quietly observing sites to see if any grown men are publicly making sexual advances to minors. Our methods for finding perverts at PaganSpace consisted of simply joining PaganSpace and reading the forums. We threw caution to the wind by alerting the owners to problems, and the authorities to anything illegal. PACA has in fact helped shut down several child porn trading sites on the Ning networks. But I guess that doesn’t “harm none” in Deirdre’s estimation.

Modern neo-Pagan morality is the same as leftist morality. It is based on identity politics and the breakdown of tradition. It replaces debate with smears and attacks (like the Dominionist smear of Sarah Palin, and the death threats I received for defending her) and refuses to acknowledge the suffering of real victims of crime or oppression if doing so would put them in conflict with some leftist canard. Thus, Rifqa Bary cannot receive support from Deirdre because to do so would mean she sided with Christians and against Muslims, who despite their open promotion of the extermination of Witches and Pagans are held in higher esteem than the American Christians whose companies make our grimiores and altar supplies. Child predators cannot be purged from Paganism because to do so feels too much like supporting sexual morality, something even “Horrible” Herman Slater ran afoul of when he had the temerity to state that gays should be monogamous until the AIDS crisis blew over. The fact that he was himself a gay man who died of AIDS has not stopped modern neo-Pagan myth from claiming he was some sort of radical right homophobe.

It turns out he was simply right, and trying to keep others from dying.

Rifqa Bary will die. Or as Muslim supporters of the Rifqa’s parents have stated publicly “the Christian bitch must die.” No matter how the case turns out, it is more likely than not that she will suffer the fate all apostates from Islam eventually do. My hope that this won’t happen will not stop the family and their supporters from making attempts on her life. Deirdre Herbert is indifferent to that.

Pagan teens are going to be raped and exploited by people who the rest of the Pagan community allows to do so. Horrendous abuse by a “Druid” claiming that sexual exploitation was part of his religion has recently been in the news and a degenerate with a history of domestic violence killed his girlfriend recently because she broke a promise to him making her a “Warlock” (and thus marked for death) in line with the hokey mythology Wiccans pass off as history. Both these crimes could have been averted if there were more Pagans willing to be “militant” in policing our own community.

Deirdre is indifferent to that as well. Instead, she’s invested in the comforting lie of universal brotherhood, that the essential goodness of every individual can be fostered by ignoring their criminality. Instead, she is invested in the leftist lie that Wahabbist Muslims can be tamed and kept as pets by White liberals if only the Right would stay out of it. A transcript she sent me of her recent show says pretty much that. It simply isn’t true and organizing our support around that faulty premise will lead to mountains of dead apostates, but there is an indifference to that fact that is at the very least depraved.

In both these instances, Hebert was willing to allow children to suffer in order to hold true to some elusive principle she is unable to define. Deirdre Herbert advocates the passive acceptance of evil, and worse, attacks those of us who will not accept evil as not being “real Pagans.”

Deidre Hebert is an example of a larger trend. Pagans have morals, and have always had morals. The Deirdre Heberts of the world would do well to remember that Western Civilization, which includes the Judeo-Christian tradition, is built upon the great Pagan empires of old. Though many neo-Pagans these days may not believe in the literal existence of the gods (more’s the pity), for those that do there is no god or goddess who supports standing by and allowing the weak to be exploited and murdered while extending your compassion to the murderers and rapists. Not in Western tradition anyway.

It is Deirdre Herbert and her betrayal of the freedom of each individual to choose their god (even the Christian one) that is truly militant and anti-Pagan. It is Deirdre Herbert, and the neo-Pagan community’s indifference to child exploitation that is an affront to the very gods she claims to serve as clergy for.  This is not open-mindedness or a desire to “harm none” since people will definitely be harmed by the inaction she wants Pagans to take with regard to child exploitation or Islamic imperialism. It is depraved indifference, and its acceptance among the wider neo-Pagan movement will ultimately destroy the movement from the inside.

Breaking News! Haitians Practice Voodoo!

Actually this Fox News piece was fair and informative, giving what is no doubt a predominantly Christian audience a look at actual Voodoo practices without theological comment. Some lefty trolls are already claiming this is evidence of some sort of racism but frankly this report on Voodoo is boilerplate and unlike Generation Hex author Jason Louv or lefty hero Martin Sheen’s hate fest The Believers (which was 90+ minutes of racist slander) doesn’t paint Voodoo as evil. But there aren’t many complaints about that interestingly:

The L.A. Times has a interesting piece on the tension between Protestantism and Voodoo in Haiti.

P.A.C.A. is Pissing Off the Right People

As I’ve said before I’m involved with Pagans Against Child Abuse which has done some great work on a number of campaigns to help keep children safe. The intrepid leader of P.A.C.A. just recently received an angry email from someone who clearly had his nefarious online perversions curtailed by her good work:

u r responsible for allowing children to be molested and killed, how do u sleep at night worthless whore? u should have everything that happened to children happen to u instead, i hope u burn in hell forever for your crimes
against children u degenerate animal

The email was sent through one of those “untraceable” email services which I won’t promote here and in an example of laughter inducing melodrama had the subject line “the blood of children is on your head u degenerate animal” which is also quite creepy when you think about it.

DodiaFae points out that this is typical behavior from web perverts:

It’s safe to assume that this email was sent by an RSOLer (Reform Sex Offender Laws activist… they’re trying to abolish the SOR – sex offender registry) or a pro-pedophile activist (they’re trying to abolish age of consent laws, the SOR, and get the government to force parents and schools to groom children for them with their version of “sex education”). Transferring blame for what they do is a very common tactic used by such individuals so that they don’t have to take responsibility for it. They will often blame the victim, the victim’s parents, or anyone else who seems to be a convenient target. Even many of those claiming to be “reformed” and “no longer a threat” will blame others in the same breath.

Normally, an RSOLer or pro-pedophile activist will go through an anonymizer site to post harassing messages to anti sites (sites created for the specific purpose of spreading awareness of, and/or fighting pedophilia). This person went a step further and used an anonymous email service to send a disparaging email with a thinly veiled threat. It’s a person that managed to get my gmail address, but didn’t have the nerve to sign their name (online or otherwise) to the email or use their own email address.

Of course while he’s doing that he’s not molesting children so I count this as a victory. Aside from raising awareness the “anti” sites make the perverts more fearful of grooming children online and distract them from such activities by drawing them into a conflict with adults rather than a “relationship” with children. This is no small feat.

As for the implied threat … I am not surprised to see that someone given to raping children spends time making anonymous threats to women. Civil commitment of sex offenders looks better with each passing day.