More Than Just Titles

A friend asked me to weigh in on Jeremy Christian.  I haven’t had the right frame of mind to weigh in on much of anything lately, but this is an important enough issue that it needs to be addressed regardless of how I might be feeling.

It would be a semantic pissing contest to ask whether Jeremy Christian is or is not a whole variety of things based on specific definitions.  I am sure there are Odinists who are distancing themselves, and declaring that Mr. Christian* isn’t a Odinist or a bigot or what have you.  Indeed, there are already some defending him; saying that a man who murdered people trying to stop him from harassing a Muslim girl wasn’t a racist.  He was just “proud of his heritage”.

I’ve also seen truly brilliant sorts go out of there way to play semantic word games over the issue, declaring him not a Heathen and not our problem.  These are the same people will have multiple arguments over weather Heathenry counts as a Pagan religion or not.  It’s one of the most tedious, foolish, and ignorant tactics I see.

Because it doesn’t fucking matter.  Heathenry has a problem with being used as a cover for white supremacy.  Jeremy Christian used the name of Odin to defend his actions.  I personally don’t think it matters if the dude identifies as a Heathen, an Odinist, or a fucking bag of door knobs.  He’s using the name of the Allfather as justification for harassment and murder; titles be damned, it’s now our problem.

If you want to be complacent?  Fine…but have the damn decency to continue being complacent when other people choose to get shit done because your apathy is not a mandate.

This is our problem….so what are we going to do about it?  I don’t know what’s next, but I do know that a laissez fair attitude won’t solve anything.
*Am I the only one who things his name is ironic as hell?


5 thoughts on “More Than Just Titles

  1. Ingeborg S. Nordén says:

    I’ve said this elsewhere and I’ll say it again here: A terrorist will always find some excuse to terrorize the public, no matter what label he uses for himself. Nithlings exist in all ethnic and religious groups, including Heathenry; the Portland attacker is as bad by modern standards as a murderous, outlawed berserker was by ancient standards. In spite of one evil, dishonorable man’s actions…the rest of us are no less Heathen than before.

    • We are, certainly, just as Heathen as we were before; Jeremy Christian doesn’t change that. Most of the conversations Heathens seem to be having about him, however, are whether he is “our problem” or not. That’s a dialogue I’ve found pretty tedious…just as it was tedious in regards to the Kansas City shooter, Dan Holloran, or anyone else. At the very least, they’re people who invoke our Gods; that makes it our problem on at least that parallel alone.

      It doesn’t matter whether the bastard identifies as a Heathen, an Odinist, on an Eggplant Wizard in service to the Mother Brain of planet Zebes; he brought Odin into it, and I think that makes it our problem along a number of parallels.

  2. thelettuceman says:

    I’m inclined to agree. I think the discussion of “This is not my Heathenry” is useful if we’re particularly willing to educate others about it. But simply saying “These people are not Heathen” is unhelpful, because it edges on a No True Scotsman defense.

    I was asked on my personal Facebook why I care about things like polytheist representation in the wider Pagan community, because it doesn’t “really impact me” by not being able to practice. I think there’s a big problem with insularity among Heathens where they think they can operate in a vacuum. Things like this absolutely impact the perception of us, as much as anything the AFA does, or whatnot.

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