Amanda and I have been watching “Bewitched”. Today we watched season 4, episode 12; that season’s Thanksgiving episode. Thanks to Aunt Clara’s bumbling; Samantha, Darrin, Tabitha, Aunt Clara, and Gladys Kravitz are all transported to 1600s New England where, ironically, Darrin is accused of being a witch. What follows is Samantha’s plea to the court in support of his innocence. Strip away the “thou”s and the “thy”s and you may see, as do I, that we haven’t changed very much in the 50 years since this aired.
“First, I wouldst congratulate Master Phineas. He hath shown us a way out of difficulties that all can follow.
Art thou clumsy? ‘Tis not thine own fault. Cry “witch!”
Art thou forgetful? Blame not thyself. Cry “witch!”
Whatever thy failings, take not the fault upon thyself. ‘Tis more a comfort to place it on another. And how do we decide who is the witch? ‘Tis simple. Again, Master Phineas hath shown us the way.
Doth someone speak differently from thee? A sign of witchery.
Doth he show different mannerisms? Witchery, of course.
And should we not find differences in speech and manner to support a charge of witchery, be of good cheer: there are other differences.
What of he who looketh different? What of she whose name hath a different sound? If one examineth one’s neighbours closely he will find differences enough so that no one is safe from the charge of witchery. But is that what we seek in this New World? Methinks not.
The hope of this world lieth in our acceptance of all differences and a recognition of our common humanity.”