I try not to insert politics into the discussions here at the Malleus Maleficarum web site. People are passionate about what they believe, and it rarely goes well for anybody. But someone pointed out that a t-shirt we recently posted to the store could be perceived as a comment upon what some consider to be a “war on women” by a particular political party. Well, we were not blind, of course, to the political implications of the design. In fact, given the very history of the Malleus Maleficarum and its effect on women, I feel that it is in keeping with the tradition of challenging ideas and imagery which we like to post here. Just as some folks object to images of women being burned at the stake, and some people object to stories about accused witches being hacked to death with machetes in Africa, some people will no doubt object to this design.
If you are offended by this design, please accept my apologies. But I would invite you to look into the history behind the statement, and perhaps ponder the truly engaging question that has, thus far, not been asked. In a contemporary society, does this design belong as a valid part of the discourse? And if so, what does that say about the ongoing relevance of the Malleus Maleficarum?
With all that said, I encourage you to go buy the t-shirt and help us keep the lights on. Make your voices heard, whatever you may believe. That’s the only real way to participate in American democracy.