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Saturday, 28 April 2012

Wicked witches of the West?

It’s come to something when a police force has to have a unit devoted to “religious violence”.

This story in the Independent tells us: “Police officers in London will receive extra instructions on helping children accused of witchcraft and sorcery with plans to expand the training nationwide if it proves effective.”

Because of the modern trend of using lowercase initials for actual bodies with actual titles (a Guardian sin, mainly, though it’s creeping in on the BBC website, too), it’s impossible to know whether this thing the Indie calls “the Metropolitan Police’s religious violence unit” is a unit that happens to deal with religious violence among other things, or is the Religious Violence Unit.

But, either way, we actually have a unit that deals – exclusively or inter alia – with something called “religious violence”, a phenomenon that is accepted without further explanation.

I’m fed up of saying I have nothing against religion but . . ., because there seems to be more and more about it to object to. Yet these Christians who visit violence upon kids whom they suspect of witchcraft and sorcery presumably follow their Big Man’s examples of humility, turning the other cheek, compassion, understanding.

But, then, maybe JC went along with that Exodus 22: 18 thing: “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” Then again, there are several interpretations of that. One is that, in the original Hebrew, the word m’khashepah was used, and that means specifically a woman who uses spells to harm others.

Do these Christians really believe their kids want to use magic to harm others?

Just a few thoughts to be going on with . . .

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