Thursday, September 25, 2008

Which Witch?

There is a video, circulating on YouTube, of now Alaska governor and vice-presidential pick Sarah Palin, receiving an anti-witchcraft blessing from a Kenyan priest. Why is this news? Why has it shown up in the newspaper, and online? Who cares? Now, if Governor Palin herself were going around, claiming to ward people against witchcraft in the name of God, that might be newsworthy. But she was attending a church service, and, basically received a blessing from someone of another culture. And that culture happens to be one of those that still harbors a widespread belief in witchcraft. (Although, given the fact that there are people in the United States who sincerely believe that Harry Potter is an enemy of God, and that Dungeons and Dragons is a gateway to Satan worship, pointing out that a belief in witches in the Third World might be the pot calling the kettle black.)

When you think of all of the functions that politicians attend in a given year, let alone across their careers, it's a pretty safe bet that some strange (to the average American) things happen on a fairly regular basis. I understand that the McCain campaign has been keeping Governor Palin away from the press, and so reporters are scrounging for tidbits to feed to the public, but it seems that this particular non-event is really scraping the bottom of the barrel.

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