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American teacher accused of "wizardry", loses job
Magic trick costs teacher job (via Pandagon)

Y'know, this explains a lot. When American right-wing religious nutcases kept screaming about how Harry Potter books taught "real" magic, I just thought they were overreacting. But no, they really believe in magic. They go on and on about how kids these days aren't being taught the difference between reality and fantasy, but it's the fundamentalist leaders and their followers that really have the problem telling the real from the imaginary. No wonder they think kids are in danger of thinking they can do magic by reading Harry Potter—they believe that the kids can and will.

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Yep. They really believe in demons, a malevolent Satan, the efficacy of magic and its always-demonic origin, as opposed to their divine magic, prayer. (Of which the major difference is that prayer takes the supplicant tone, even when it demands, and magic takes a demanding tone, even as it supplicates.)

The fundie leaders, if pressed, might say that they don't expect magicians to shoot fireballs, but hey certainly believe in curses and other magics that don't have quite as obvious a world-bending effect. And literature like Harry Potter or teachers performing prestidigitation are such a danger - they're gateways that make the Satanic stuff look harmless. Like Dungeons and Dragons was supposed to be.

If that story wasn't enough, reading through a few Chick tracts would show this to be the case.

Ah, Chick tracts. Whenever I need a laugh, I can always turn to them. I see precious few of them these days out in the real world. Although I was recently linked to a rather odd short film version of one of those tracts. It was quite the head-trip.

You can read the letter in .pdf format at this link: clicky

Basically it doesn't mention any kind of formal discipline for the other claimed reasons why Piculas was dismissed... I agree with him when he says that these are extremely thin, trumped-up charges to cover somebody's hysterical reaction to a sleight-of-hand trick concerning a toothpick and Scotch tape.

Yep. In Canada we do not grasp the full insanity of American fundamentalism. It really is straight out of Salem. I only understood this myself after reading Joe Bageant's "Deer Hunting with Jesus".

That reminds me. I really would like to experience an American megachurch sometime.

That's appropriate, since the historical analysis of the Salem witch trials was that it was all just political and personal greed.

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