Friday, July 13, 2007

Progressive Activists Demand that Hogwarts School Become a Wand-Free Zone

HOGSMEADE, UK -- (CNN -- Charms New Network) -- Progressives, social activists, and peace protestors have demanded that Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry be officially designated a wand-free zone. Today, this coalition in favor of restricting the possession and usage of magical wands placed a full-page ad in the Daily Prophet, the main print news media source for the British wizarding community.

Spokeswitch Olivia Branch told CNN, "We absolutely want Hogwarts to be a wand-free zone. Wands are ultimately weapons and can cause injury and even death. We learned the terrible power of wands during You Know Who's reign of terror; we know as a fact that the Three Unforgivable Curses can be performed only with wands. Therefore, we believe that, in the interest of public safety, we must limit access to wands, especially at schools. Only in this way can we guarantee that schools will be safe. Children should be taught about wands, but we do not believe that they should have personal access. We are simply taking the logical next step to our esteemed colleague and supporter Professor Umbridge's innovative, progressive, and reform-minded approach. We must get away from our old-fashioned notions of violence as a solution to violence."

Professor Dolores Umbridge has stirred much comment upon her accession to the post of High Inquisitor of Hogwarts in addition to her duties as teacher of Defense Against the Dark Arts. In this class, she has spearheaded the effort to prioritize theoretical and historical approaches in the implementation of risk-free, controlled environments for dealing with Dark Arts according to carefully specified Ministry of Magic-approved educational protocols. Wands are put away during class sessions that employ strategies for increased reading and writing across the curriculum.

This initiative to ban wands from schools and other designated wand-free areas have met with fierce and vocal opposition from the National Wand Association. Spokeswizard Max Kaster insisted, "The banning of wands from any location means only that the unwanded people in those places will be absolutely vulnerable to attack if a threat comes onto the grounds. A wand-free location means that law-abiding witches and wizards will not possess wands. Do you think Volde -- I mean, You Know Who -- will meekly leave his wand at the school door if he decides to attack Hogwarts? Without wands, the teachers and students will be powerless -- they won't be able to defend themselves with even a simple Expelliarmus spell.

"Look, we might as well come to the grips with the reality that we live in a dangerous world and we have a responsibility -- nay, the duty -- to both warn our children about the dangers and to teach themselves how to protect themselves. Life is not a risk-free, controlled environment, and neither is it a wand-free zone. Pretending evil doesn't exist and then attempting to create artificial safety zones are not only useless but dangerous exercises in willful denial. I tell you now, if Hogwarts bans wands, I will pull my children out and my wife and I will home-school them personally in the defensive use of wands."

Note: at this moment in the interview, Ministry of Magic security personnel appeared and hustled Mr. Kaster away. Ministry official Percival Weasley then gave CNN a press release stating that all reports of You Know Who's return are lies propagated by unstable teenager Harry Potter and seditious former Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore.

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