Wiccan Priest Fights Local Ordinance Banning Fortune Telling

October 7, 2000

Source: Star Tribune

On October 7, 2000, the Star Tribune reported that "Monte Plaisance filed a lawsuit, backed by the American Civil Liberties Union, in U.S. District Court seeking to overturn a Terrebonne Parish ordinance that punishes fortune telling and palm reading with up to $500 in fines and one year in jail. Plaisance, a 28-year-old Wiccan minister who says he communicates with ancient Greek deities, let a detective investigating his witchcraft museum photograph Tarot cards, altar, crystal balls, trident wands and pentagrams. The museum also serves as a church for a coven of about 20 witches, Plaisance said. The ordinance was passed under a state statute that allowed local governments to regulate such activities, said Joe Cook, of the Louisiana chapter of the ACLU. The ACLU argues that if the parish bans fortune telling, then it effectively bans weather predictions, fortune cookies, commodities predictions and doctors' prognoses."