Get our free newsletter
I read with interest the article on Max Beauvoir by Jake Tapper (“The Witch Doctor Is IN,” 6/26) and found it informative and, with a few minor lapses, accurate. While I would prefer to see the name of the religion spelled Vodou, rather than “voodoo,” and capitalized, like the name of any other religion, that can be overlooked. But the title of the piece, “The Witch Doctor Is IN,” is unbelievably insensitive. The term “witch doctor” is derogatory, sensationalistic, and racist. In less enlightened times it was employed to describe the priests and healers of “primitive” (i.e., nonwhite) cultures, and I had hoped that it had fallen into disuse. It is no more appropriate to refer to Max Beauvoir as a witch doctor than to apply that term to a Christian leader, a Jewish rabbi, or any other spiritual leader.