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Monday, March 12, 2012

There But For The Grace Of God(dess)...

As a Wiccan, I am well aware that I do not belong to a "mainstream" religion. I do not automatically get a day off on my most holy and solemn of days, Halloween, actually called Samhain (pronounced sow-en). I am pretty sure that if there were dietary requirements for my faith I would be among the very few that would care, and I am constantly faced with misconceptions that my beliefs are "evil" and that people assume I am roaming the streets in flowing black robes in search of people to "hex" just for the fun of it.
  That's O.K. I correct the misconceptions when I can, and figure that there are plenty more who don't care to know the truth. My husband, who is a Christian, my family, friends, and co-workers know who I am and that is good enough for me.
  The Blaze is reporting today that 2 British women were told by their employers to remove the crosses that they wear as a sign of their faith.  Nadia Eweida, a British Airways employee, was told that her cross did not conform to the British Airways dress code. Shirley Chaplin, a nurse for 31 years, was fired by the NHS for not hiding her cross underneath her uniform.
  My first thought when I heard this story was how easily this could be me. But more than that, in today's environment, where it is O.K. to air a television show called "Good Christian Bitches", it could be any of us. The hostile attitude towards faith, especially Christians in our society pervades everything we do. People, especially those on the left love to make fun of Conservatives talking about a "war on faith", but it truly does exist. How does a nurse wearing a cross cause one to become so irrevocably offended? Did she tie you in bed and preach to you? Did she force you to wear a cross as well? Why is this so frightening to some that they feel perfectly fine demanding that the crosses be removed?
 Perhaps the frightening part is accountability. When one follows a particular faith, one is expected, at least half-heartedly to follow the tenets of that faith. This means very simply, there are do's and don't's, standards of behavior. Some people do not want to be bogged down with such inconveniences. That is their choice. But when employers are able to dictate whether or not their employees can wear a cross, a Star Of David, or perhaps a Pentagram, and it is sanctioned by the government, is there any doubt that the loss of more freedoms is not far behind?
 I am not a Christian. In fact, Christians have done some not-too-Christian things to Witches in the past, and yes I LOVE the word "Witch"! That aside, it is a tenet of my faith to harm none. If I want to wear my Pentagram loud and proud, I want Nadia and Shirley to be just as loud and just as proud.         

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