Why W.I.T.C.H. (The Women's International Terrorist Conspiracy From Hell) Needs To Make A Comeback

Why W.I.T.C.H. (The Women's International Terrorist Conspiracy From Hell) Needs To Make A Comeback

Let's get witchy.

The Women's International Terrorist Conspiracy from Hell or W.I.T.C.H. was a short-lived feminist group active from 1968 to 1970 as part of the second-wave feminists groups who ruled over the 1960s and 70s. Formed from the ashes of the NYRW (New York Radical Women), W.I.T.C.H. was a wide group of "covens" openly dedicated to feminism and socialism.

It was allegedly created in New York City, when female supporters of men being investigated by the House of Un-American Activities Committee decided that a witch hunt should have real witches. They soon began dressing up for HUAC hearings accordingly. Besides that, witches have always been a sign of wild and unabashed feminine empowerment. While there is no proof the women actually had magical abilities, their entire persona fit the bill.

There was no centralized group, instead, these separate covens acted as satellite groups. These groups would protest in black clothing and witch costumes, chanting and shrieking hexes at their opponents.

Some common targets were feminism based, such as beauty pageants and bridal fairs. Others were more political, i.e. Chase Bank, politicians, Wall Street, and public transportation fare hikes, and they were somewhat effective in their hexes. Their first protest was on Halloween in 1968. They staged a public hex of Wall Street, and managed to cause a decline in the Dow Jones Industrial Average the next day.

In 1969, the day after Valentine's Day, W.I.T.C.H. hosted simultaneous protests at bridal fairs in New York City and San Francisco. Dressed as witches and black-veiled brides, they chanted "Confront the Whore-makers!," and sang, "Here come the slaves. Off to their graves." They carried signs saying "Here Comes the Bribe" and passed out leaflets that stated, "Marriage is a dehumanizing institution -- legal whoredom for women... A woman is taught from infancy that her only real goal in life is to fulfill the role of wife and mother of male heirs. She is allowed an identity only as an appendage to a man.... The wedding ceremony is the symbolic ritual of our legal transference from father's property to husband's property." At the New York show, they even released numerous white mice.

No problem was too small for W.I.T.C.H. Covens in Boston hexed bars while others in D.C. hexed the presidential inauguration. On January 1969, women at the University of Chicago hexed the chairman of the Sociology Department for firing a popular female professor at the college. A separate coven in Chicago later hexed the Chicago Transit Authority to protest a fare hike, chanting:

"Witches round the circle go to hex the causes of our woe. We the witches now conspire to burn CTA in freedoms' fire. Bankers gall, politicians guile, Daley's jowl, lackey's smile, trustee's toe, bondholder's liar, these we cast into our fire. Meetings held, messages sealed, when the fare hike is revealed, we, the people, are the prey of the demon, CTA...."

While a bit problematic (given its cliche, racist mysticism of gypsy people; and non-gender-inclusive speech) the W.I.T.C.H. manifesto is packed with a whole lot of empowerment and forward thinking (for the 1970s). It pulls no punches, pronouncing:

"WITCH is an all-women Everything. It's theater, revolution, magic, terror, joy, garlic flowers, spells. It's an awareness that witches and gypsies were the original guerrillas and resistance fighters against oppression -- particularly the oppression of women -- down through the ages. Witches have always been women who dared to be: groovy, courageous, aggressive, intelligent, nonconformist, explorative, curious, independent, sexually liberated, revolutionary. Witches were the first Friendly Heads and Dealers, the first birth control practitioners and abortionists, the first alchemists (turn dross into gold and you devalue the whole idea of money!). They bowed to no man, being the living remnants of the oldest culture of all -- one in which men and women were equal sharers in a truly cooperative society, before the death-dealing sexual, economic, and spiritual repression of the Imperialist Phallic Society took over and began to destroy nature and human society."

If any of this resonates with you, W.I.T.C.H. would welcome you. In the leaflets they circulated, it stated:

"If you are a woman and dare to look within yourself, you are a Witch. You make your own rules. You are free and beautiful. You can be invisible or evident in how you choose to make your witch-self known. You can form your own Coven of sister Witches (13 is a cozy number for a group) and do your own actions... You are a Witch by saying aloud, "I am a Witch" three times, and thinking about that. You are a Witch by being female, untamed, angry, joyous, and immortal."

Isn't it about time for a W.I.T.C.H. revival? In the words of W.I.T.C.H: "We are WITCH. We are WOMAN. We are LIBERATION. WE are WE."









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Will Enough Ever Be Enough?

Yet another school shooting in America, still nothing done. We are dying.

Tuesday, March 20th, 2018: We are all heartbroken to hear about another school shooting.

At Great Mills High School in Maryland, a 17-year-old male is pronounced dead at the scene after shooting two other students and a school resource officer. Just before their first period started, at 7:55 am, Austin Rollins shot one male and one female student with a handgun before being shot by the school's resource officer. While the 16-year-old female is in critical condition, the 14-year-old male is currently stable. This is the 17th school shooting in 2018. That's 17 days out of the past 80 that parents have gone to bed with their children in body bags as a result of gun violence.

I don't care what political party you associate with, gun violence is completely out of control. I am a registered Republican and completely agree with stricter gun laws. Learn the difference between a gun ban and sales control. Concerned citizens are not trying to take away your guns, but are trying to take away the rights from those that are risks.

Could you imagine legally having to send your child to school but never coming back? You've packed their lunch, maybe with a special note, and gave them a kiss before they left for school, not knowing that it was their last. No matter where we go, we are not safe. We can't go to malls, movie theaters, schools, or even churches without having to worry if it will be our last trip. Our homes, our places of worship, and our schools are supposed to be the places where we feel safest and, instead, our children are filled with fear. Instead of focusing on the political views that divide these groups, why don't we focus on what unites us? Why don't we focus on protecting our kin?

Everyone has had an opinion on the walkouts that have been happening around the country. Everyone has had an opinion on the 17 minutes of silence for the 17 children lost in the Florida shooting. I've seen people disgusted that Nickelodeon had 17 minutes of broadcast cut because it "interrupted the only program [I] let [my] children watch".

If your child was shot at school, you wouldn't have to worry about what programs they watch, but rather where to bury them and how to afford their memorial.

I've seen people saying that it's no wonder that Millenials are dumb. They "find any excuse to cut class". Have you thought about the fact that they are genuinely worried about going to school?

Personally, I've experienced both a shooting scare at my high school and a bomb threat at my college. I shouldn't have to worry about my life ending. I'm legally forced to go to high school and get an education or I'm putting myself into a lifetime of debt to get a degree.

We are all too young to stress about gun violence. Our school years are supposed to be the times our of lives, but they're being wasted on worrying about dying every day.

Rest in peace to all of those who have lost their lives in shootings, not only this year, but always. Hopes, thoughts, and prayers go out to their loved ones. One day, we will unite and find a solution.

We need to work together and forget the labels of parties and cliques in school and look out for one another instead. There is no kind but mankind.

Cover Image Credit: Boston Herald

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The Republican Versus Democrat Stigma Needs To Slow Down

We Need To Be Individual Again

We as a society have developed an unnecessary need to place people in a specific party based on what could be a single value out of many. This is a letter for those who do not define themselves as one or the other; for those whose values range between conservative and liberal, for those who feel the unfortunate pressure of society to choose one even though your values do not fit just one.

The political parties at one point generally just meant “these are my basic beliefs, so this is the candidate I will vote for because they most closely represent them.” Party affiliation was harmless. Republicans and Democrats could get along fine, differing opinions not getting in the way of relationships and alignment. More importantly, you did not have to be part of a specific political party to be an active member of society. Your opinions and principles were yours.

Over the years following the last two election races, political parties gained a much more significant and defining meaning in our lives as individuals and as members of society. There is a newly developed stigma behind political opinions. You are almost pressured to feel one way or another about every single topic. If a majority of your values are of the conservative agenda, you must be a heart-and-all Republican. In contrast, if you are more liberal-leaning you are docked as a set Democrat. We as citizens are being labeled according to what may be a few hard-values. And dishearteningly enough, can be ridiculed for what we value. Even if you might not value everything the same as your determined party.

There exists those of us that hold values from both parties. It is possible to value women’s rights and also value a traditional marriage. It is possible to be a gun owner and also active in keeping children safe in school. You do not have to just submit to every belief of one party. You can value aspects of different parties and still be a functioning member of the American society. Do not let the looming obligation to declare yourself as strictly one or the other. You do not have to pretend you agree with everything Democratic or everything Republican; you can have your own values. And you should. Our society is messed up in the way that values are pushed on citizens. We are meant to be free individuals with our private values.

It is not fair to those of us who value different things. Not every American is a to-the-bone Democrat or Republican. It is possible to hold liberal beliefs as a conservative person. And Vice-Versa. We need to stop labeling one another as one or the other, conservative or liberal. We need to stop silencing each other because we have differing views. We need to accept not everyone is perfectly one party, and diversity exists. Open mindedness exists in Americans, despite the seemingly growing generalizations. We need to be able to agree to disagree on certain topics.
Cover Image Credit: LexiHanna

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