Productive Anger: Get The Wild Hunt on The Daily Show

Some days, anger overwhelms me. Some days it is hard to look at my wonderful friends and neighbors and remember that not all Christians are hateful. Instead, some days all I can focus on is the hateful, to watch them with a wary eye full of distress.

When the Washington Times thinks it’s appropriate to publish a column stating the Air Force Academy is “pandering” to my “fringe” religion, despite the fact that Pagans have fought and died for this country, I get angry.

Around the 1950s, fringe leftists enamored by the concept of worshiping the Earth adopted the ancient labels and pretended to follow the old ways.

When David Barton can advocate for a Christian government and actively work against my religious rights only to get away with lying about these activities on television, I get angry.

“The true historic meaning of “religion” excludes paganism and witchcraft, and thus, does not compel a conclusion that McCollum has state taxpayer standing … paganism and witchcraft were never intended to receive the protections of the Religion Clauses.”

When I have to deal with people who feel it’s appropriate to tell me I will burn in hell because they are the “keepers of the truth”, I get angry.

I get angry and I want to lash out. I want to enumerate the hatred, bigotry and discrimination practiced by some Christians. On these occasions I want to jump up on a soapbox and preach against Christian “on-true-way-ness”, reminding people of what they have done, and some still do, to other religions. I want to speak earnestly to you about Hypatia, Gemistus Pletho and Julian. About Olvir of Egg and all of the victims of Olaf I. About men and women who persisted in practicing their witcheries and werewolfry even with the threat of torture and death hanging over their heads.

I’m not going to do that though.

Instead I’m going to ask you to write The Daily Show and suggest they invite The Wild Hunt author and Washington Post columnist Jason Pitzl-Waters on the show to discuss David Barton and the real challenges religious minorities face in this country.

As a journalist he is familiar with the legal battle facing Patrick McCollum, the discrimination against Santeria, the triumphs of and challenges before the Lady Liberty League, the AFA earth-centered spirituality space, the Witch-Children of Africa and India, and many more stories important to our communities. He’s the journalist at the nexus of all of these stories, and he’s an excellent public speaker.

Take a moment, drop a line and join me in putting anger to good use.

ATTENTION: There is now a Facebook campaign to get Jason on The Daily Show!

About Star Foster

Polytheistic Wiccan initiated into the Ravenwood tradition, she has many opinions. Some of them are actually useful.

  • http://profiles.google.com/ibrainwise Brian Weis

    Excellent idea. Much more constructive channel for all that potential anger, Star!

  • brainwise

    Excellent idea. Much more constructive channel for all that potential anger, Star!

  • lynn

    Great idea, Star!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=573208202 Keri Bas

    Great idea – I’ve written in!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=573208202 Keri Bas

    Great idea – I’ve written in!

  • http://egregores.blogspot.com/ Apuleius Platonicus

    This is a brilliant idea!!

  • http://egregores.blogspot.com/ Apuleius Platonicus

    This is a brilliant idea!!

  • Danacorby

    I wrote: “As a Wiccan for 40 years, I was appalled and angry at David Barton’s ignorant and hateful remarks about Paganism and Witchcraft in general, about which he evidently knows absolutely nothing, and at his spiteful comments on the beautiful new worship area at the Air Force academy. But I didn’t know what I could do about it.

    Now, I join prominent pagan spokeswoman Star Foster and many others in asking you to invite Wild Hunt author and Washington Post columnist Jason Pitzl-Waters onto your show to discuss David Barton and the real challenges religious minorities face in this country.

    Every time one of us is given a platform to speak in the mainstream media, the producers allows some hate-mongering “Christian” to rebut us ‘for balance.’ How about allowing an intelligent, articulate and extremely well-informed Pagan to provide the balance to Mr. Barton’s opinions? ”

  • Danacorby

    I wrote: “As a Wiccan for 40 years, I was appalled and angry at David Barton’s ignorant and hateful remarks about Paganism and Witchcraft in general, about which he evidently knows absolutely nothing, and at his spiteful comments on the beautiful new worship area at the Air Force academy. But I didn’t know what I could do about it.

    Now, I join prominent pagan spokeswoman Star Foster and many others in asking you to invite Wild Hunt author and Washington Post columnist Jason Pitzl-Waters onto your show to discuss David Barton and the real challenges religious minorities face in this country.

    Every time one of us is given a platform to speak in the mainstream media, the producers allows some hate-mongering “Christian” to rebut us ‘for balance.’ How about allowing an intelligent, articulate and extremely well-informed Pagan to provide the balance to Mr. Barton’s opinions? ”

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Lamyka-L/649965363 Lamyka L.

    Sent. I know I’d love to see him on.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Lamyka-L/649965363 Lamyka L.

    Sent. I know I’d love to see him on.

  • http://disirdottir.wordpress.com disirdottir

    Thank you for the suggestion and for the link, Star!

    I wrote the following:

    “As an admirer of Jon Stewart’s work from his MTV veejay days to his current role as a journalist and political commentator, I encourage you to bring The Wild Hunt author and Washington Post columnist Jason Pitzl-Waters on the show to discuss the serious challenges religious minorities still face in this country. Jason is doing a lot of hard, often unrecognized work to bring marginalized issues to light, and he speaks for a population that is commonly treated as invisible and voiceless in the hopes we’ll be ground into submission by bullying. Jon doesn’t shy away from asking hard questions that make those in power uncomfortable, and that’s exactly the kind of ally the greater Pagan community needs to start being witnessed and respected in American culture. If you’re asking yourself “Why should our viewers care about what a Pagan has to say about politics?”, I would counter that before 1999, it could have been argued that no-one cared much about what a comedian has to say about politics – and that has since been proven very wrong.”

  • http://disirdottir.wordpress.com disirdottir

    Thank you for the suggestion and for the link, Star!

    I wrote the following:

    “As an admirer of Jon Stewart’s work from his MTV veejay days to his current role as a journalist and political commentator, I encourage you to bring The Wild Hunt author and Washington Post columnist Jason Pitzl-Waters on the show to discuss the serious challenges religious minorities still face in this country. Jason is doing a lot of hard, often unrecognized work to bring marginalized issues to light, and he speaks for a population that is commonly treated as invisible and voiceless in the hopes we’ll be ground into submission by bullying. Jon doesn’t shy away from asking hard questions that make those in power uncomfortable, and that’s exactly the kind of ally the greater Pagan community needs to start being witnessed and respected in American culture. If you’re asking yourself “Why should our viewers care about what a Pagan has to say about politics?”, I would counter that before 1999, it could have been argued that no-one cared much about what a comedian has to say about politics – and that has since been proven very wrong.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/joseph.a.moody Joseph A Moody

    note to self, drop an add into next outgoing ep for topic. I would like to see Jason on the daily show….although i would like to see dave there as well personaly lol.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joseph.a.moody Joseph A Moody

    note to self, drop an add into next outgoing ep for topic. I would like to see Jason on the daily show….although i would like to see dave there as well personaly lol.

  • Peg

    My note:
    I’d love for the Daily Show (which I watch every chance I get) to invite someone on the show to counter the ignorant and oppressive words of David Barton, who claims that pagans, witches, Wiccans and others following earth-based paths are somehow “not included” in the same freedom of religion granted to all other Americans. Barton’s claim that the founding fathers were only referring to Christians is short-sighted, inaccurate and inflammatory. Barton also recently made hateful comments referring to an Air Force Academy’s new pagan worship area in Colorado.

    With a number of other concerned pagans, I urge you to invite Wild Hunt author and Washington Post columnist Jason Pitzl-Waters onto your show to discuss David Barton’s intolerance and to address some of the other challenges facing those following earth-based spiritual traditions in our nation. Mr. Pitzl-Waters is an informed, articulate and level-headed man who I consider an excellent representative of the pagan community (which generally tends to be fairly lefty-leaning in its politics, with some exceptions).

    I think inviting Jason as an interviewee would make for a fascinating discussion and, given Barton’s ignorant extremism, provide some comic relief as well, while making it clear that Barton’s approach to mainstreaming religion in America is wrong-headed and discriminatory.

    Many thanks!

    Peg Aloi
    Media Coordinator, The Witches’ Voice
    Creator of ‘The Witching Hour’ blog

    • Helene

      You do know that paganism is NOT an earth-based religion, just some parts of it, like wicca are earth-based, many like for example: hellenismos and asatru are not, many pagans are NOT nature loving people, many are connected to cities. Let’s not ignore that or to continue with the steryotype of paganism among ourselves.

      • http://ianphanes.livejournal.com/ Ian Phanes

        @a19693ab4bedc9f386f8d18de305ec2a:disqus

        I still find it jarring when people describe Wicca as “earth-based”. When I started out, it was still a magical religion, and the focus was the *moon*, not the earth.

        It’s amazing how much things have changed in paganism and magic in less than 30 years.

        • http://profiles.google.com/vanye111 Jason Hatter

          I’m not Wiccan, I’m an ADF style Druid, but I just tell myself when they say “earth-based”, that it’s more a reference to Earth, not Heaven, since the Monotheisms seem to be more concerned with what they’ll get in Heaven than taking care of what they have here on Earth.

        • Ananta Androscoggin

          There are times I find myself feeling that what some Trads of modern Paganism should be described as might be “Reality-Based Religion,” and then I am reminded of such nonsensical self-aggrandizement as “otherkin” and “Lady-Gaga Worship” and the like.

    • Helene

      You do know that paganism is NOT an earth-based religion, just some parts of it, like wicca are earth-based, many like for example: hellenismos and asatru are not, many pagans are NOT nature loving people, many are connected to cities. Let’s not ignore that or to continue with the steryotype of paganism among ourselves.

  • Peg

    My note:
    I’d love for the Daily Show (which I watch every chance I get) to invite someone on the show to counter the ignorant and oppressive words of David Barton, who claims that pagans, witches, Wiccans and others following earth-based paths are somehow “not included” in the same freedom of religion granted to all other Americans. Barton’s claim that the founding fathers were only referring to Christians is short-sighted, inaccurate and inflammatory. Barton also recently made hateful comments referring to an Air Force Academy’s new pagan worship area in Colorado.

    With a number of other concerned pagans, I urge you to invite Wild Hunt author and Washington Post columnist Jason Pitzl-Waters onto your show to discuss David Barton’s intolerance and to address some of the other challenges facing those following earth-based spiritual traditions in our nation. Mr. Pitzl-Waters is an informed, articulate and level-headed man who I consider an excellent representative of the pagan community (which generally tends to be fairly lefty-leaning in its politics, with some exceptions).

    I think inviting Jason as an interviewee would make for a fascinating discussion and, given Barton’s ignorant extremism, provide some comic relief as well, while making it clear that Barton’s approach to mainstreaming religion in America is wrong-headed and discriminatory.

    Many thanks!

    Peg Aloi
    Media Coordinator, The Witches’ Voice
    Creator of ‘The Witching Hour’ blog

    • Helene

      You do know that paganism is NOT an earth-based religion, just some parts of it, like wicca are earth-based, many like for example: hellenismos and asatru are not, many pagans are NOT nature loving people, many are connected to cities. Let’s not ignore that or to continue with the steryotype of paganism among ourselves.

      • http://ianphanes.livejournal.com/ Ian Phanes

        @a19693ab4bedc9f386f8d18de305ec2a:disqus

        I still find it jarring when people describe Wicca as “earth-based”. When I started out, it was still a magical religion, and the focus was the *moon*, not the earth.

        It’s amazing how much things have changed in paganism and magic in less than 30 years.

        • Jason Hatter

          I’m not Wiccan, I’m an ADF style Druid, but I just tell myself when they say “earth-based”, that it’s more a reference to Earth, not Heaven, since the Monotheisms seem to be more concerned with what they’ll get in Heaven than taking care of what they have here on Earth.

        • Ananta Androscoggin

          There are times I find myself feeling that what some Trads of modern Paganism should be described as might be “Reality-Based Religion,” and then I am reminded of such nonsensical self-aggrandizement as “otherkin” and “Lady-Gaga Worship” and the like.

  • http://www.maidtoqueen.blogspot.com Laura M. LaVoie

    I sent in a note as well. I don’t remember what I wrote since I sent it a couple of hours ago, but I am sure I was brilliant.

  • http://www.maidtoqueen.blogspot.com Laura M. LaVoie

    I sent in a note as well. I don’t remember what I wrote since I sent it a couple of hours ago, but I am sure I was brilliant.

  • http://dianarajchel.com Diana Rajchel

    I hope this works, and I do believe Jason can handle it. At the same time, because the Daily Show is, first and foremost comedy and NOT news, producers may go for the cheap laugh over actual dialog. Please be prepared for the best and worst of what could be – but my thoughts are all for taking the chance on Stewart and co. having an open mind.

    • http://www.maidtoqueen.blogspot.com Laura M. LaVoie

      The good news on that is typically when it comes to the interview segment Jon Stewart tends to be pretty engaging and serious. Unless it someone promoting a movie or Ricky Gervais.

  • http://blog.dianarajchel.com Diana Rajchel

    I hope this works, and I do believe Jason can handle it. At the same time, because the Daily Show is, first and foremost comedy and NOT news, producers may go for the cheap laugh over actual dialog. Please be prepared for the best and worst of what could be – but my thoughts are all for taking the chance on Stewart and co. having an open mind.

    • http://www.maidtoqueen.blogspot.com Laura M. LaVoie

      The good news on that is typically when it comes to the interview segment Jon Stewart tends to be pretty engaging and serious. Unless it someone promoting a movie or Ricky Gervais.

  • Veronica

    Education is key. Not that we shouldn’t be impassioned, but railing against conscientious close-mindedness only gets anyone so far. Bravo! This idea makes so much good sense.

  • Veronica

    Education is key. Not that we shouldn’t be impassioned, but railing against conscientious close-mindedness only gets anyone so far. Bravo! This idea makes so much good sense.

  • http://twitter.com/IarasChamber amanda

    Excellent Idea!!

  • http://twitter.com/IarasChamber amanda

    Excellent Idea!!

  • http://twitter.com/IarasChamber amanda

    Excellent Idea!!

  • http://profiles.google.com/graham.j.freeman Graham Freeman


    When I have to deal with people who feel it’s appropriate to tell me I will burn in hell because they are the “keepers of the truth”, I get angry.

    A wise man can not be insulted, since truth can not insult and untruth is not worthy of notice.

  • http://profiles.google.com/graham.j.freeman Graham Freeman


    When I have to deal with people who feel it’s appropriate to tell me I will burn in hell because they are the “keepers of the truth”, I get angry.

    A wise man can not be insulted, since truth can not insult and untruth is not worthy of notice.

  • Ananta Androscoggin

    You are aware, aren’t you, that the Washington Times is owned by the Moonies, and tends to reflect the biases of that church’s leadership?

    I don’t (and WON’T) do facebook. And since we got rid of satellite, I haven’t exactly watched any cable tv except in the ER waiting rooms where you can’t hear anything. But I do think

    Jason would be a good one to go on The Daily Show.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RZADCFJJS23XNDQALCP7MOR6I4 Dee Dee

      And you are aware, aren’t you, that Jason writes for the Washington Post, a completely different newspaper – one with international credibility?

      • Guest

        You did notice that the first quote in the article was from the Washington Times, right?

  • Ananta Androscoggin

    You are aware, aren’t you, that the Washington Times is owned by the Moonies, and tends to reflect the biases of that church’s leadership?

    I don’t (and WON’T) do facebook. And since we got rid of satellite, I haven’t exactly watched any cable tv except in the ER waiting rooms where you can’t hear anything. But I do think

    Jason would be a good one to go on The Daily Show.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RZADCFJJS23XNDQALCP7MOR6I4 Dee Dee

      And you are aware, aren’t you, that Jason writes for the Washington Post, a completely different newspaper – one with international credibility?

      • Guest

        You did notice that the first quote in the article was from the Washington Times, right?

  • Danytx

    I agree with you. I am tired of hiding my religion and tired of people putting paganism down to the ground.What ever happened to ” Free Religion” in this country?

  • Danytx

    I agree with you. I am tired of hiding my religion and tired of people putting paganism down to the ground.What ever happened to ” Free Religion” in this country?

  • The Bony Man

    What would be even better, is that this might even make this issue into something discussed in non-pagan households. The Daily Show is huge, and if we got Jason on there, we might have an actual representative for the Pagan community at large in the eyes of mainstream USA!

    • NorseAlchemist

      True enough. I might not always like Jason’s politics, but having people discuss Paganism and what we face is almost always a good thing.

  • The Bony Man

    What would be even better, is that this might even make this issue into something discussed in non-pagan households. The Daily Show is huge, and if we got Jason on there, we might have an actual representative for the Pagan community at large in the eyes of mainstream USA!

    • NorseAlchemist

      True enough. I might not always like Jason’s politics, but having people discuss Paganism and what we face is almost always a good thing.

  • http://twitter.com/Aaradyn Erika Morton

    Message sent and *like* placed on the Facebook group. I’d love to see Jason on the show! @thewildhunt – we’re behind you!

  • http://twitter.com/Aaradyn Erika Morton

    Message sent and *like* placed on the Facebook group. I’d love to see Jason on the show! @thewildhunt – we’re behind you!

  • http://www.facebook.com/kindkingkenne Kenneth Campbell MacKillop

    I like that w/ witchery that the author mentions ‘werewolfry’ tho i prefer ‘werecraft’ but that is just labels. The pagan community and witches often ignore the Otherkin. We were much more persecuted and have no living tradition like the Italian Stregheria. Thanks for representing!

  • http://rhett.weatherlight.com/ Rhett

    Thank you so much for kicking this off. I’ve included my letter to Comedy Central at http://rhett.weatherlight.com/2011/05/an-open-letter-to-comedy-central/

  • http://rhett.weatherlight.com/ Rhett

    Thank you so much for kicking this off. I’ve included my letter to Comedy Central at http://rhett.weatherlight.com/2011/05/an-open-letter-to-comedy-central/

  • http://www.facebook.com/ana.m.berry Ana M Berry

    Wow we are still fighting for our freedom of religion just not for “that religion”?

  • http://www.facebook.com/ana.m.berry Ana M Berry

    Wow we are still fighting for our freedom of religion just not for “that religion”?

  • William Hood

    This is an awesome idea. I’d love to see Jason on The Daily Show.

  • William Hood

    This is an awesome idea. I’d love to see Jason on The Daily Show.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PMTLR3IIGKPHZ2YNU3PDXWK4WA Kenneth

     

    “I am writing to ask that you consider doing a more
    in-depth piece on Mike Huckabee and his association with David Barton.

     

    Barton has a long track record of extremist
    religious belief. He has frequently asserted that America was founded solely by
    and for Christians and that others, including Muslims and pagans, have no
    legitimate standing before the law.

     

    This part of Mr. Barton’s work is well-documented
    but has not been adequately explored, given Huckabee’s clear association with
    and endorsement of David Barton. He is also closely allied with  or admired by Newt Gingrich and Michelle
    Bachmann. It calls into question the commitment of several potential
    presidential candidates to a key piece of our nation’s Constitution and the
    rule of law.

     

     I would
    suggest for a more balanced view of the topic, you consider inviting Jason
    Pitzl-Waters of The Wild Hunt blog. Jason has researched and reported this
    issue at length, and it is the subject of a federal appellate court case now
    pending in a case in California. Americans United for Separation of Church and
    State would be another excellent resource. Thank you.”

     

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PMTLR3IIGKPHZ2YNU3PDXWK4WA Kenneth

     

    “I am writing to ask that you consider doing a more
    in-depth piece on Mike Huckabee and his association with David Barton.

     

    Barton has a long track record of extremist
    religious belief. He has frequently asserted that America was founded solely by
    and for Christians and that others, including Muslims and pagans, have no
    legitimate standing before the law.

     

    This part of Mr. Barton’s work is well-documented
    but has not been adequately explored, given Huckabee’s clear association with
    and endorsement of David Barton. He is also closely allied with  or admired by Newt Gingrich and Michelle
    Bachmann. It calls into question the commitment of several potential
    presidential candidates to a key piece of our nation’s Constitution and the
    rule of law.

     

     I would
    suggest for a more balanced view of the topic, you consider inviting Jason
    Pitzl-Waters of The Wild Hunt blog. Jason has researched and reported this
    issue at length, and it is the subject of a federal appellate court case now
    pending in a case in California. Americans United for Separation of Church and
    State would be another excellent resource. Thank you.”

     

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PMTLR3IIGKPHZ2YNU3PDXWK4WA Kenneth

     Well, I tried to post what I wrote to Comedy Central, but I am informed it was held “for a moderator.”

    Maybe David Barton owns Patheos now…!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PMTLR3IIGKPHZ2YNU3PDXWK4WA Kenneth

     Well, I tried to post what I wrote to Comedy Central, but I am informed it was held “for a moderator.”

    Maybe David Barton owns Patheos now…!

  • Anonymous

    I wrote in as well!   Hope u get on!  Marlon

  • reddesertabode

    I wrote in as well!   Hope u get on!  Marlon

  • Beast

    Good idea Star, you inspired me so i added my two cents worth too. When he gets on could you let us know so we can watch.

  • Beast

    Good idea Star, you inspired me so i added my two cents worth too. When he gets on could you let us know so we can watch.

  • http://www.facebook.com/john.w.morehead John W. Morehead

    Here’s one Christian who has been actively involved in genuine relationships and dialogue with Pagans, has edited a book on Christian-Pagan dialogue (Beyond the Burning Times [Lion, 2008], and who supports Pagan religious rights. Know that you have a few of us allied in your freedoms.

  • http://www.facebook.com/john.w.morehead John W. Morehead

    Here’s one Christian who has been actively involved in genuine relationships and dialogue with Pagans, has edited a book on Christian-Pagan dialogue (Beyond the Burning Times [Lion, 2008], and who supports Pagan religious rights. Know that you have a few of us allied in your freedoms.

  • Whitebear58

    Jason—I am sorry for the mistreatment of you–yes I am a Christian Witch and I am embarrassed by Christian s who are dogmatic in their beliefs. That is not the message of Jesus–besides I like who He hung out with, tax collectors, hookers, lier’s and He hung next to a thief and loved him anyway—–so that is why I have a problem with organized religion—love Doc  

  • Whitebear58

    Jason—I am sorry for the mistreatment of you–yes I am a Christian Witch and I am embarrassed by Christian s who are dogmatic in their beliefs. That is not the message of Jesus–besides I like who He hung out with, tax collectors, hookers, lier’s and He hung next to a thief and loved him anyway—–so that is why I have a problem with organized religion—love Doc  

  • http://www.facebook.com/diane.lucas2 Diane Lucas

    I think it would be great if Jason Pitzl-Waters were to appear on the John Stewart show, we Pagans/Wiccans deserve our moment in the sun as well as Christians. It is about time that the media realize that Christianity is not the end-all be-all that they profess to be.

  • http://www.facebook.com/diane.lucas2 Diane Lucas

    I think it would be great if Jason Pitzl-Waters were to appear on the John Stewart show, we Pagans/Wiccans deserve our moment in the sun as well as Christians. It is about time that the media realize that Christianity is not the end-all be-all that they profess to be.

  • http://www.paganprincesses.com GG

    I just sent Comedy Central and email! I borrowed heavily from your post. I hope that’s okay.

  • http://www.paganprincesses.com GG

    I just sent Comedy Central and email! I borrowed heavily from your post. I hope that’s okay.

  • Tina Marie

    Actually the credit goes to Valerie and Fred, Good job Valerie and Fred! 

  • Tina Marie

    Actually the credit goes to Valerie and Fred, Good job Valerie and Fred! 

  • Tina Marie

    Oops…I meant to say thank you to Valerie and Fred for making  the Facebook page to start the campaign….my apologies to Star :)

  • Tina Marie

    Oops…I meant to say thank you to Valerie and Fred for making  the Facebook page to start the campaign….my apologies to Star :)