(NOTE: Refreshed English is used throughout this site. See Glossary for more on RE.)
OFFICIAL COMMUNIQUÉ FROM THE MINISTRY OF CULTURE
FREESTANDING EVOLUTIONIST HAVEN OF JUSTICEA
On the last day of December, just before the old year gives way to the new, it is common to see many blog posts about customs people observed in the “Olden Days” in the attempt to assure good luck for themselves, their homes, and their families in the New Year. Some of these customs continue into the present.
One such custom is First Footing. It was practiced in several European countries with minor variations. It involves the belief that the first person who enters a house after midnight on January 1st brings either good luck or bad luck to that household for the entire year. Of course, it is only a superstition. Even so, whether the first footer is seen as the harbinger of good or ill fortune is not based on anything so remotely logical as the person’s character or habits. One might understand if a belligerent person who drinks too much on Saturday nights and causes pub brawls would be associated with turmoil ahead, while a teetotaler who knits socks for the poor would be seen as bringing peace. However, it doesn’t work that way. Once again and, most unfortunately, various forms of bigotry rear their ugly heads!
A Custom Tainted by Bigotry
In Ireland, for example, if that belligerent pub brawler is a dark-haired man, he’ll be seen as the bringer of good luck to the household, whereas if that kindly sock-knitting teetotaler is a wenn, she’ll be considered the bearer of ill fortune. — And any red-haired men are reading this post, snickering at the ladies for being seen as bad luck, well, the joke’s on them! ALL redheads are seen as bad news, whether wenn or man.1 This is not meant to single Ireland out. While the hair color of the man who is seen as bringing good luck changes from county to country, the point is that in this old European customs, it is always a male who is seen as bringing good luck and a wenn who is seen as bringing bad luck. — And, of course, genderqueer people were never even mentioned in these old European customs at all. (But, in this case, that’s a good thing!)
Who knows exactly how customs like First Footing got started, or why whole groups of people were chosen to represent good or ill fortune? It certainly isn’t fair, and First Footing, as it is practiced in parts of Europe to this day, is yet another slap in the face of the femele sex.
If the First Footing custom started after Judeo-Christianity gained a foothold in Europe, we may suspect that, perhaps, vilifying wenns as the bringers of evil may refer back to the character Eve of the Genesis Creation myths. Interestingly, another fictional femele of Jewish creation mythology, Lilith, was said to have had red hair. Did the fictional characters of these misogynist myths inspire the vilification of real, evolved wenns in the First Footing custom? Who knows! If they did, it is yet another example of why it is so important for Freestanding Evolutionists to publicize and promote the Principle of Freestanding Evolution – the position that the characters of the Genesis and other misogynist creation myths cannot represent real, evolved humin beings in any way, literally or symbolically.
Justicean Twin Values of Honor & Action to the Rescue!
In our island nation of FEH Justicea, we Justiceans go further than just publicizing and promoting Freestanding Evolution. Our Twin Values of Honor & Action demand that if we see an injustice practiced against any segment of society, we defend the honor of that group by taking swift corrective action. Therefore, we changed the custom of First Footing long ago to make it congruous with the Principle of Freestanding Evolution in two important ways:
- First, as Evolutionists, Justiceans acknowledge that the X and Y chromosomes co-evolved, so there was no “first” or “second” sex.2 Therefore, it is neither “natural” nor “correct” that a person of the male sex be the first to enter a house on the New Year, and
- Second, as Freestanding Evolutionists who reject both the notion that the characters of misogynist creation myths can represent real, evolved people and the idea that the femele sex can be used as the scapegoat for having brought evil into the world, Justiceans do not consider it bad luck for a femele to be the first to enter a house after midnight on January 1st. On the contrary, they believe that all gexes (i.e., gender/sex combinations) have positive attributes that their members bring with them wherever they go for the betterment of society!
The Three Gexes of Justicea
As I mentioned just about one year ago, in my first blog post from Justicea, we Justiceans group people into three basic gexes: Wenn, Man, and Ren.
In the Wenn Category are all people who identify as femele, whether cisgender or transgender. If they are transgender, whether transitioned or not transitioned.
In the Man Category are all cisgender and transgender people who identify as male.
In the Ren Category are all people who identify as such. They may consider their gender as existing between or beyond the binary poles of Wenn and Man, or they may consider themselves genderfluid, gender-gifted, or genderqueer.
The Gift of Each Gex
According to Justicean tradition, the following is the gift that each gex brings upon entering a house first in the New Year:
- A wenn brings with her the gift of Diplomacy. Her arrival is considered good luck because it portends an increase in the number of friends and allies who will come into the circle of the household members in the year ahead, as well as the bounty of good will that will result from these new relationships.
- A man brings with him the gift of Protection. It is viewed as good luck if a man is the first person to enter a home in the New Year, as it portends that the household members will be free from bodily harm and illness in the year ahead.
- A ren brings the gift of Wisdom. It is accounted good luck if a ren is the first visitor to cross the threshold in the New Year because it portends that the household members will be wiser, more insightful, and more flexible people in the year ahead.
Welcoming All & Their Gifts: Justicean Values
As you can see, the Justicean version of the First Footing Custom honors any person who enters a house first upon the New Year as a welcomed asset. All household members are lucky to receive the gift of Diplomacy, Protection, or Wisdom that she, he, or ke brings. Indeed, Justicean First Footing is a winning situation for everyone involved!
Try a Justicean First Footing at Your Home This Midnight!
If you are having a few guests over to your house or apartment tonight to see in the New Year, you can easily do a First Footing. Just before midnight, send a few folks outside your front door. Then at midnight, see who comes in first! Will the gift you and your household members receive for 2022 be the gift of making new friends and getting along well with others (Diplomacy)? Good health (Protection)? Or greater understanding (Wisdom)?
If there is a particular gift that you would like to have in 2022—for example, if you will have to negotiate an important contract and need to be diplomatic, or if you will be making a big life decision and need wisdom, or if you want to remain in good health through the COVID pandemic and wish for protection, you may ask for a person of the gex associated with that particular gift to go outside and reenter your house immediately after midnight.
If you are not having guests over to your home, you can still do a First Footing by having a family member be the person who steps outside and then comes in first!
Of course, it is just superstition that anyone entering a house first in the New Year can bring luck in with them, but with a Justicean First Footing, it is all in good fun with no hurt feelings — and, most importantly — with respect all around!
More on Justicean First Footing & New Year’s Toasting Song
The Justicean First Footing Custom, along with the lyrics of our New Year’s Toasting Song, “Cheers to Us All!” was the subject of my very first GFJ blog post in January 2021. Maybe you and yours can sing “Cheers to Us All!” after “Auld Lang Syne” tonight as the Justiceans do! Just visit the January 2021 Archive post on the right, or click on the link below:
Wishing you and yours a Happy New Year and all the best in 2022!
Peace & Siblinghood,
Minister of Cultural Affairs, FEH Justicea
- Hoban, Brian. “Irish New Year Traditions.” The Wild Geese, December 31, 2015. https://thewildgeese.irish/profiles/blogs/irish-new-year-traditions (Accessed 12/21/2021)
- Pincock, Stephen. “Men and women evolved at the same time.” ABC Science. News in Science, August 2, 2013. https://www.abc.net.au/science/articles/2013/08/02/3816309.htm (Accessed 12/31/2021)
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