- Aug 7, 2002
- Reaction score
She's Still Having Meetings With School Boards, and Wiccans React
Wiccans React to Book Ban Plan
Reported By: Blair Meeks
A Gwinnett County mother’s push to get Harry Potter books banned from elementary school bookshelves has made it to the state board of education.
Laura Mallory is the mother of three who's fighting against those books. Tuesday morning she pleaded her case to a hearing officer who will make a recommendation to the state board.
Among her arguments is a central theme that the books promote witchcraft and evil, but people who know about real life witchcraft, or Wiccanism, say the witches in the Potter books have nothing to do with reality and a lot more to do with getting children to enjoy reading.
At Inner Space and the Hoot Owl Attic bookstore in Sandy Springs you can find anything you want to know about the mystical world. “We have books on Wicca, Paganism, mystical Christianity,” the clerk said.
And in back they put many of these words into action. They teach and they practice. People like Marcia Gaither. She used to practice Wiccanism, or witchcraft, now she's teaching a class on it.“Do what you will but harm none in the process -- I guess you could say the Wiccan equivalent of the golden rule,” said Gaither.
She says the controversy about Harry Potter is absurd.
“No one tried to take ‘The Wizard of Oz’ away, you didn't see them taking ‘Bewitched’ off the air when it was on; ‘Sabrina the Teenage Witch.’ All of these things are fantasy and nothing in any of these are even remotely close to what Wiccans practice,” Gaither said.
She says the real magic the books worked in her life is with her children and teaching them to love to read.
“My daughter doesn't hate reading, but my son did -- and this is one thing that helped us get over the hump,” Gaither said. “And he doesn't follow the same path I follow. It didn't draw him into witchcraft or anything.”
In the classes, they teach about witchcraft and wizardry. They even teach spells, but the spells they talk about don't turn anyone into a frog. It's more like spells for a good job, a raise, or inner peace. They compare them to a type of prayer.
The state school board is expected to make a decision about the books in December. The Gwinnett County School Board has already turned the book banning request down once.