June 1 roundup


  • South Africa had laws against witchcraft until recently. However, their purpose was not to outlaw witchcraft per se but to prosecute those who used it to defraud or physically harm others. With a large, uneducated rural and very superstitious population such cases are more common than most people think.

  • Some US states still have similar laws against fraud by fortune tellers and the like.

  • The acceptance of the witchcraft law by people trained in the law is startling, but the item concerned an African country. However the Massachusetts appellate court accepted as valid the use of a modern day witch hunter, Daniel Brown, and the application of the discredited theory of repressed memories against Father Shanley.

    Massachusetts vs. the Central African Republic. There is no real difference.