Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Editorial Exchange: Some Treated More Equally Than Others

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Editorial Exchange: Some Treated More Equally Than Others

Article excerpt

Editorial Exchange: Some treated more equally than others

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An editorial from the New Glasgow News, published Sept. 6:

Corrections Canada giveth, and Corrections Canada taketh away. Federal prison inmates who prefer to worship a pantheon of gods and spirits almost had their prayers answered for the services of a Wiccan chaplain - until the boss got wind of the notion.

Just after the federal prison agency requested proposals for a priest to nurture spiritual concerns of witches - or Wiccans - in B.C. prisons, Public Safety Minister Vic Toews put a chill on the idea. A government official said Toews was not consulted about the Wiccan posting and he ordered a review.

So no final word yet, but perhaps some supplication will change the minister's mind.

This comes across as a news oddity. But it has also elicited some clarification from proponents of pagan beliefs. They hasten to inform the public that, contrary to what B movies or other hysteria presents, Wicca is not about evil or devil worship. As one spokesperson put it, they're simply tree huggers - who happen to invoke various gods and goddesses, perform rituals involving the four elements, cast spells and are comforted by the teaching and counselling a priest can offer. …

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