Enough Already

This is so sad. A public library in Pickens County (SC), has canceled its Summer Reading Program for teens due to accusations from the public that the programs condoned witchcraft. Read about it here.

I was already riled up after reading about Laura Mallory’s crusade against Harry Potter in Gwinnett County (GA). This is her fourth loss in court, but Mallory is on a mission, planning to bring her case before federal court. American Libraries reports

I must say, I’m dying to get my hands on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows when it comes out on July 21 (we’re even throwing a Harry Potter Party at the library) and I can’t wait to see the new movie, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix!

Strange, though—I haven’t yet learned how to cast a magic spell, even after devouring all those Harry Potter books and movies. Oh well. I guess I’ll just have to enjoy them for the stories they are!

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2 Comments »

  1. Oudler said

    I am not a member of the Religious Right. I am pro-gay marriage, pro-Harry Potter and pro separation of church and state.
    I do not have religious objections to Tarot reading myself, but as a player of Tarot card games, I object to what appears to be one-sided presentations of Tarot cards only in terms of divination. Based on my own research on this nationwide Collaborative Summer Library Program, I must say that the “You Never Know” program as it applies to Tarot is NOT promoting education at all. As practiced in these summer reading programs around the country, a monolithic view of Tarot as a divination art is presented to the youth of America.

    Tarot cards, according to playing card historians, were not originally designed for fortune telling. They were created for playing a type of card game similar to Whist. Tarot card games are still played today in France, Austria, Italy, and Switzerland. There also appears to be a small but growing number of players outside Europe.
    http://www.pagat.com/tarot/
    http://i-p-c-s.org/history.html
    If public educational institutions foster the notion that Tarot is only about divination and the occult, then they are not doing the job for which we pay them.

    I think that taxpayer funded institutions such as public libraries and public schools which are designed to educate the public should give equal time to the card playing aspects of Tarot. Tarot is often presented in this country only as something to accept or reject in terms of its alleged accuracy in predicting the future. When other options such as card playing are being supressed, one is not actually free in how one views or uses the cards.

    I must ask why must all presentations of Tarot in this country have to be occult related? Why do we not expose the young people to actual card games played with Tarot decks? Teens should be aware that Tarot cards are not just used for the occult or for divination. We should teach teenagers the rules for Tarot card games too. It is highly possible that young people may come to prefer the card games over the divination practices. They should be given an informed choice. We should educate young people about all aspects of culture including Tarot and not present one sided depictions of these matters.

    I do not wish for these Tarot presentations to be banned or cancelled as they have in some parts of the country, but I do think they should be more balanced by including some information regarding Tarot’s role in the history of card games.

    Best wishes,
    James D. Wickson

  2. stephanie said

    Wow, this is interesting and enlightening information. Thank you for commenting!

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