|Danjul Norsewind of the band Norsewind performing solo at an event|
Danjul, is a Chieftain of a Norse/Germanic Tribe and an active Odinist...
I don't know how many regular readers of Scission will be interested in today's bit. Perhaps, though it will attract some new readers. Who knows?
Pagans. What do I know about pagans? Not much really. So when I read a piece on One People's Project a few weeks ago about some band named Norsewind being dropped from a pagan pride event due to connections with the Keystone State Skinheads, a group of racists who were founded back in 2001 and which has been connected with some nasty crap, I took a step back and said, "whaaa?"
Philadelphia ANTIFA first brought the band's connections to the fore. One People's Project weighed in and the band was dropped from the event.
Okay, let's step back a bit. Since I presume most of you have never really heard of Pagan Pride Day or Pagan Pride events here is a description from the board of Philadelphia Pagan Pride Day:
The mission of the Pagan Pride Project is to foster pride in Pagan identity through education, activism, charity and community. In keeping with that mission, Philadelphia Pagan Pride Day is intended to bring together Heathens and Pagans of all traditions to advance understanding, communication, and fellowship among the various communities.
Philadelphia Pagan Pride Day is an open, public, family-friendly harvest event. We welcome anyone to participate who supports our mission and/or wishes to learn more about the Pagan community and our beliefs. An important facet of the mission is to build community among Pagans, Heathens and adherents of non-traditional faith systems and to educate the greater community about those beliefs. The event is designed as a celebration of life and of a community that contains diverse elements. That being said, we also find hate and intolerance in any form abhorrent and counterproductive to our mission.
Well, the board, as I said, decided Norsewind didn't fit the bill. Good for them. Philly Antifa gave kudos to that decision:
It recently came to the attention of Philadelphia Antifa that the popular nordic bandNorsewind has concerning connections to the Neo-Nazi hate group the Keystone State Skinheads. Due to their upcoming appearance at the Pagan Pride Day we shared our information with the organizers of the event. Showing the utmost concern for the well being of the most vulnerable members of the Philadelphia Pagan community, they acted swiftly and removed Norsewind from the event lineup. The organizers of the Philadelphia Pagan Pride Day should be commended, and the extra effort that went into replacing Norsewind at the last minute should be recognized with gratitude. The Philadelphia Pagan community is diverse and the presence of those affiliated with hate groups poses a direct threat to the continued wellbeing of many of its members, including people of color, Jewish Pagan people, and LGBTQIA people. This recent decision shows how committed the organizers of this event are to keeping the Philadelphia Pagan community one of tolerance and diversity. We at Philadelphia Antifa believe that all should be free to practice their religious beliefs without fear of discrimination or oppression based on race, gender, or sexual orientation and we will combat these oppressions wherever they can be found in the hopes of one day truly achieving a Free Society.
As to Norsewind, which of course, claims they are anything but racists, One People's Project wrote:
Antifascists first heard about Norsewind in 2009. Two of their members, Daniel Norris (aka “Danjul Norse”) and Daniel Riegel (who has since died and been replaced by Hagalaz) attended KSS’ Leif Ericson Day Celebration in Fairmount Park. Daryle from One People’s Project was there to show opposition and filmed the event. Riegel was very vocal and came up to argue with Daryle at the end of the video. Because the extent of their ties to KSS were not known at the time, people gave them the benefit of the doubt that they were just duped viking nerds.
Recently, however, it was discovered not only that Norris had been in attendance at the Leif Ericson Day celebration in 2009, but that Norsewind had become something of the KSS house band, playing parties, wakes and even THIS YEAR’S Leif Ericson Day celebration after party.
The band even appears on a Stormfront (the world’s largest neo-nazi message board) thread about “Your Favorite White Nationalist Bands.” The poster, Tremley, is none other than KSS associate Ron Sheehy, a NJ Neo-Nazi and internet troll who Antifa smashed in Harrisburg a while back.
Philly Antifa has a lot more information on the band's racist connections, if you are interested.
Okay, as jumbled as my writings here are, what I am going to post here is much more clear about the whole issue of paganism, heathens, racism, and white supremacy from a heathen anti-racist perspective. This article was brought to my attention by a friend who knows a lot more about this whole pagan stuff than me. It comes from The Wild Hunt. I think even if you couldn't care less about pagans or heathens, or what is happening in their world, this piece should interest you anyway, and its message certainly goes beyond the pagan movement.
It was a job and we decided to do it. It’s a business for us and it was a festival dedicated to Leif Erikson and his voyage. There were no signs of White Supremacy or neo-Nazi or hate. It was just a barbecue and they treated me with respect and enjoyed our music. That was it. So when they asked us to play again last year, I thought, OK.
Our message is for everyone. I don’t pick and choose. Not politics and not skin color. I just want people to hear my message of tradition and family. Perhaps it’ll influence them toward something positive. Or just make them laugh or be happy.
The band performs music based off our love for history and culture in Europe and North America, as well as other places around the world. We write and love folk songs that sing of ancestors and bravery as well as traditions that our early settlements and tribe’s have sung about in early scripts. We have chosen this path of art so that we may portray a positive message as well as a non-judging stance as a band…..which is why we play pretty much anywhere we are respected!!!
Whether by refusing to address the bigger questions of why stuff like this keeps happening or through shouting down those who bring it up the end result is the same. Without open discussion, education, and confrontation, the situation in American Heathenry is never going to improve and may get worse. When bigoted, narrow-minded sentiments rear their heads they need to be called out for what they are. Excuses and misdirection must be challenged for what they are.
Cattle die, kinsmen die
And so dies oneself
One thing I know never dies
Is the fame of a dead man’s deeds