SALEM WITCH TRIALSAround 1692, the hangings and imprisonment only stopped after so many had the courage to refuse to lie to the court investigators and falsely confess their guilt that the trials stopped. 19 innocent people had already been hung though.We know now that manyof the false accusations had to do with personal grudges or were for personal gain.
Accused 'Witch' Kepari Leniata Burned Alive By Mob In Papua New Guinea –Meredith Bennet Smith
The Huffington Post| By Meredith Bennett-Smith Posted: 02/07/2013 4:46 pm EST |Updated: 02/09/2013 1:46 pm EST
If we simply judge such acts as ignorant and primitive, then we will never be able to help innocent people in other countries stay safe.If we do not carefully try to understand how such hysterical things can happen, then we will never be able to help stop such killings or life ruining punishments.Worse yet, when it is not something as outdated and unscientific as witchcraft, sometimes we don’t recognize our own hysterical reactions to real fears until we have already punished innocent people that we mistakenly assume are the enemy within our communities.
The Second Red Scare– a modern day witch hunt?After World War II the Soviet Union (Russia) took control over Eastern Europe.They spread their system of communism through Eastern Europe. They clearly stated that they intended to spread their belief system across the world.China was also following a form of Communism.For us, did we see Soviet influenced communists as Satan like hidden “witches” to be kept out of our country?
Arthur MillerIn 1950’s he was called before a government committee that questioned his allegiance to the American government.Wrote The Crucibleas an allegory to the era.In his mind, there was little difference between the witch hunts of Salem and the witch hunts of so-called communist sympathizers in this era of American History.
oWe were allies during World War II, but after the war was over our relationship turned into one of suspicion and distrust and led to real, visceral fear for our survival.oWe feared that they wanted to spread their Communist ideology through out the world, and that our lifestyle in the United States would eventually be threatened. (Capitalism)oWe deeply feared the annihilation of our society by nuclear weapons.
This fear eventually lead us into the Korean War in the 1950’s and the Vietnam War in the 1960’s.
We had spies in the Soviet Union, and they undoubtedly had some here= real fear.