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Wicca in the States

In 1986, Wicca was recognized as an official religion in the United States through the court case Dettmer v. Landon.

In the case, incarcerated Wiccan, Herbert Daniel Dettmer, was refused the use of ritual objects typically needed worship. The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Wicca, like any other religion, was entitled to First Amendment protection.

In 1998, a Wiccan student in Texas, enlisted was prevented by a school board from wearing Wiccan jewelry. The aid of the ACLU was sought, and the board reversed its view.

In 2004, the Indiana Civil Liberties Union fought to reverse a judge’s decision that divorcing Wiccans were not allowed to teach their faith to their children.

In 2005, U.S. Army Sgt. Patrick D. Stewart became the first Wiccan serving in the U.S. military to die in combat. The family was refused a pentacle – a very common religious symbol among many Pagans – on his gravestone. As a result of a court case brought by the group Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, Wiccan symbols are now accepted by the Veterans Administration.