Inspired by the creation of my college's first quidditch team, I wrote a mock article about a fictional scandal in which one team was accused of using dark magic to win.
Following a fierce match, allegations have surfaced that some players may have been using more than skill to score points. Kipaya Kapiga examines what the accusations could mean for the wizarding world and if this might spell the end of collegiate quidditch in the States.
Despite a fierce show of magic, strategy and sheer nerve in last Sunday’s season opener, the Wooster Scottish Nationals were defeated by the Toledo Firebolts. The quidditch match ended with many Wooster Scottish Nationals suffering bodily and psychological harm including bruised noses, arms and egos. According to some players and spectators however, there was more than your run-of-the-mill magic brewing in this match.
In the days following the match, three players and five fans have come forward to report the use of what they describe as dark magic at the game. Controversy has quickly surrounded the allegations, which players and fans of the Toledo Firebolts have decried as shallow, childish attempts to undermine the credibility of their team.
If complexity can be measured in yards of parchment, the role of dark magic in contemporary magical society is indeed a hotly debated issue among magical scholars, their students and the wizarding world as a whole. The realm of quidditch however, has long been considered hallowed ground in this respect, a solitary oasis of consensus in an otherwise confusing and variegated ideological void. “Without a doubt, it is the violation of this critical wizard-wide understanding that is so disturbing about this case,” explained Cornelius Rutherford, professor of Magical History.
In the political sphere, this dire warning appears to have fallen on deaf ears. The Ministry of Magic’s Head of Magical Law Enforcement has declined to comment on the matter and it is unlikely any legal case will materialize, let alone see the warm enchanted light of a Ministry courtroom. For players and spectators alike, this neutrality is cold comfort, a few of whom have taken matters into their own wizarding hands.
At neighboring Ohio schools, quidditch fans have started a button campaign aimed at spreading awareness of, and condemning the use of, the dark arts on the pitch. Buttons and pins touting phrases “Choose not to use,” “Save the dark arts for the bedroom,” and “What would Krum do” can be seen at an increasing number of campuses in the Middle West.
Still others have gone further and requested that, prior to any future matches, players submit to voluntary broom and wand inspections. These efforts have done little to ease the controversy, with some students claiming that the measures go too far and ruin the spirit of the game.