Pagan Prisoners: Let Us Wear Robes or Go 'Skyclad'

British prisoner says hooded robe should be kosher, too
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 12, 2012 7:15 PM CDT
Pagans in British prisons are arguing for their right to pray in hooded robes or just plain naked.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Pagans say they're fed up with prejudicial treatment in British prisons. Two in particular are complaining that prison rules won't let them pray as Pagans traditionally do—either wearing a druidic robe or going "skyclad" (known to the rest of us as naked). Other prisoners can wear scarves during prayer, notes one prisoner in a letter, so "why can I not wear my hooded robe? This is blatant discrimination and should be seriously looked at—there should be one rule for all or no rules at all."

Neither prisoner is named in a Daily Mail article, but the second is quoted as saying he should be allowed to go "skyclad" as long as his cell windows are covered and he "doesn't offend anyone." British rules allow pagan prisoners a handful of religious "artifacts," including a pentagram necklace, rune stones, and chalice, but say robes must be "hoodless" and no one is going "skyclad." Turns out paganism is an issue in America, too: The US Air Force is setting aside worship time specifically for pagans, druids, and Wiccans.

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