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New England Town Moves Into Future Without a Crystal Ball

Close your eyes and visualize. Imagine a small town in New England where people fear being arrested for telling the future, clairvoyance or tarot card readings. A place where contacting spirits or communicating with those who have passed on are persecuted and even arrested. Is this the 1680s? Nope, it's the 20th century. The New England town of St. Johnsbury in VT has just repealed a law banning mystical practices put on the books in 1966. One tarot reader says, "When the ordinance was lifted, I actually felt a large weight lifting from my shoulders. It was very oppressive to have to refrain from something that was as natural to me as breathing."

Though town officials don't know where the law came from, fear of fraud has inspired a bunch of communities to ban fortunetelling. St. Johnsbury may have had a reversal in their law, but the crystal ball has trouble in other parts of the country. To find out where,


In Philadelphia last year, city inspectors closed more than a dozen psychics, astrologer and tarot-card readers once they realized they also had a decades-old law that banned these practices. In Livingston Parish, LA they also made soothsaying, fortunetelling, palm reading and crystal ball usage a crime. Meanwhile, similar laws on the books are being challenged in states such as Nebraska, Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina and Oklahoma.

Bans on the practice fortune telling lead some to believe that the government should not have the power to decide whether fortunetelling is illegal — but I bet you could have guessed that even without a crystal ball.


Join The Conversation
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
I don't know about you Dave, but I had to look that one up. ;) Now the boy puts his hands on the girl's breasts and twists them as if they were radio knobs saying "Tune in, Tokyo! Tune in Tokyo!..." (from the Urban Dictionary) I wonder if they were blind :? Nevertheless, I'm sure they get some pretty interesting readings anyway.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 8 years
I didn't know psychic readings included "Tune in Tokyo" ;)
UnDave35 UnDave35 8 years
I think I'd have to use the blind man method. :rotfl:
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
Just kidding.
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
:rotfl: Will you be reading me like the blind or rely on those tarot cards ;)
UnDave35 UnDave35 8 years
Jazz, if you come in that outfit, I'll give you an EXTREMELY good reading. ;)
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
wow - i think that sometimes people take old ordinances and things too far. who is getting hurt by having tarot card readers and others similar out there? it makes me kind of happy to live in NYC where you know something like that could never happen. yes there are skeptics - but this is a belief that people really rely on to get peace of mind and all that.
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
Wow UnDave, I'm just so glad to know where I can get a reading next time I am in Wisconsin ~ just knowing you're available gives me such peace of mind! It's just so hard to know one's future these days! ..and maybe we could top it off with about five shots to ensure a REALLY good reading!! :cocktail: I'm just so glad I can spend my pennies on whatever I choose ;)
UnDave35 UnDave35 8 years
Thank God I'm allowed to practice this in WI. This is my favorite way to make money, especially since the people who tend to believe in this have so little money to begin with.
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
Thanks, Jazz Z. :) Yes, she was correct.
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
I think psychics, astrologers and tarot-card readers make the world more interesting and if people want to spend their money for a reading vs. going to the movies for example, they should have the freedom to do so. I think it is less harmful than internet porn. I'm surprised they just arrested those evil fortunetellers :mob: as opposed to burning them at the stake! Jude I'm sorry to hear you lost your parents...assuming the psychic was correct. I can see how that would make one become emotionally strong in a hurry....and also explain all that wisdom you have ;)
stiletta stiletta 8 years
This just seems so silly and unenforceable. Also whatever happened to caveat emptor? If you want to give someone money for making stuff up, it's your right as a citizen.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 8 years
i live in florida, and there are palm readers in every town.
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
raciccarone raciccarone 8 years
Okay, I went to one a long time ago and she came right out and told me what my name was and what I did for a living. And then I realized I was wearing my security badge. :coffee:
Kimpossible Kimpossible 8 years
Exactly Jude.. the fortune telling and mystical beliefs shouldn't be illegal.. the fraud and scamming should be. I'm very happy for those who follow this type of religion/spirituality that they have a little more peace of mind to be able to do so freely.
dreamsugar dreamsugar 8 years
LOL -- so no Madame Cleo -- oh well
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
Some woman was arrested this weekend up in Northern California--apparently she scammed a lady out of tens of thousands (it might even have been hundreds of thousands) of dollars by claiming she was cleansing a curse from the victim and the victim's family. I've heard of other, similar scams as well. But no, fortune-telling itself shouldn't be illegal. On another note, once when I was in England, I went to a psychic in Glastonbury. I walked in the door, she looked at me, and without so much as a "what's your name," told me how many brothers I have, that I'm the middle child, and that I'd lost both parents. It was eerie.
raciccarone raciccarone 8 years
This is what happens when funding for witch retrieval and removal is cut.
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