Wiccan Opens Iowa State House

We hear a lot about fundamentalist Christians wanting to assert themselves over the running of the United States. This makes it a surprise when a state legislative body invites a pagan to offer up a blessing to start its work session. This is exactly what happened in the Iowa House on April 8th.

Wiccan priestess Deborah Maynard from Cedar Rapids, Iowa stood in front of the Chamber and gave her blessing. Some Republicans chose to not be there, or turn their backs on the podium as a means of protest. One Republican, the House Speaker, at least was decent enough to shake her hand when done.

Though this is not the same as a good old call to Odin to get things started, it is a very progressive thing to do. Iowa is known for its progressive nature, form first granting sanctuary to runaway slaves, to being the first state to legalize gay marriage, Iowa has always been ahead of the curve on what we like to think of as common sense.

An old acquaintance of mine, a Methodist by faith, told her grandmother about her new Asatru friends. The grandmother's response was that it was an opportunity for the gal to learn something about her people. Up through her grandmother's youth, her community had followed the Old Ways. Some of that old spirit still fills the culture in The Land Between Two Rivers.

Someday, maybe all the state legislatures will be filled with Heathens. It's a pleasant thought and doesn't appear as likely as it should. Events like this in the Iowa House should raise your hopes a little.


Here's another news article, this one from the Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/govbeat/wp/2015/04/10/what-happened-...