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As I was reading the (sadly fascinating) story of the four Loudoun County youths who got into a lot of trouble (“The Others,” 6/14), I noticed that one of them claimed to be a Wiccan. I was chagrined to see that, because I thought it would be unfair for people to blame all the adherents of that religion for the actions of only one of them, as I suspected would happen.
Then, in the next issue of the Washington City Paper, I read a letter to the editor by one Demitria Monde Thraam of San Francisco. She argued that it was entirely appropriate to blame every member of a given religion, and that those who would blame it on Wicca simply had the religion wrong. She laid the blame on Christianity, arguing that the intensity of Christian images and what she considers the hypocrisy of a vast majority of Christians were directly to blame for the misdeeds of these four people. (At least I think that was her logic—it was very hard to follow.)
Oh, OK. Thanks for clearing that up, Ms. Thraam!
It is truly horrifying to read this kind of hate, opprobrium, and misplaced blame, which evaporates easily when looked at with anything resembling an open mind. Consider this: When a person blames all black people for the bad actions of a single black person (invariably citing some negative characteristic that all black people, or at least “the vast majority,” supposedly have), we rightly consider the blamer a racist. What is the difference between such a person and Thraam, who seems entirely convinced that every last Christian is a hypocrite? (And how on earth does she know this?) It would be bad enough if Thraam were blaming the misdeeds of an individual Christian on all Christians, but in this case, not a single one of these four people was a professed Christian! Only someone determined to blame Christians for every misdeed in history would make this argument.
I am going to keep a clipping of Thraam’s letter and show it to anyone who doubts that bigotry against Christians is alive and well in this country.
I thank the City Paper for performing the valuable public service of publishing her screed.