The Statute of Secrecy is the wizarding world’s attempt at protecting themselves against muggles and any backlash should magically become commonly known. We’ve all heard about what can happen when muggles are armed with the truth. The Salem Witch Trials leave a black mark in history.
Because of that, witches and wizards joined together to create and follow a bunch of rules. These rules are designed to protect both wizards and muggles. But not all laws make sense, as evidenced by some of the things we’ve seen during our time with Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts. Here are perhaps the ten items that make the least amount of sense.
10 The Pureblood Resistance
You might be surprised to hear there, but back when the Statute of Secrecy was put into place, there were several pureblood families who resisted the laws. Specifically, the Malfoys were the most vocal in their opposition.
You see, they had ties to higher class muggle families, and they had gotten quite used to all the perks that came with that association. They weren’t prepared – or willing – to lose those benefits. This fact is probably a little confusing and counter-intuitive since you’d think that purebloods would rejoice in the forced distancing between muggles and wizards.
9 Harry’s Trial
As far as examples for the confusing nature of the Statute of Secrecy, or how easily abused it can be, we need to look no further than Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix. Here, we see Harry go on a full trial for performing magic in front of a muggle.
Harry performed magic in front of one (or two, depending on how much she really saw) witnesses. The first is Dudley, who is related to Harry and already knew that he was a wizard. And the second was Mrs. Figg, a squib. Performing magic in front of these two would not count as a breach, and yet it isn’t brought up once during the trial, implying that it wasn’t a big deal? It’s a bit odd.
8 Vague Dress Guidelines
We’ve all seen the way wizards and witches dress. It’s the sort of thing that would get the attention of most muggles. So, naturally, there’s a clause in the Statute of Secrecy covering how wizards and witches should dress when around muggles. This actually makes a lot of sense.
Unfortunately, those guidelines are somewhat vague and thus aren’t incredibly helpful for those that didn’t grow up seeing muggle fashion. So the result is something that’s still relatively obvious and standout. It kind of defeats the purpose of the law.
7 Magical Creatures Fall Under This Statute As Well
The Statute of Secrecy is a massive set of laws and clauses. In fact, it actually encompasses most laws about keeping magical beings – from wizards to pixies – out of the sight of muggles. This makes sense at first glance, but the more you think about it, the crazier it gets.
For example, all magical creatures are covered within these laws. Even those that won’t read or follow said laws. That makes things a bit more complicated, putting even more responsibility of the wizards that witness a magical being – while not automatically having any of the training.
6 Keeping the Secret, Even From Spouses
There was a period of time in which the Statute of Secrecy was even more strict than it is now. Picture the world shown during the Fantastic Beasts movies; witches and no-majs were allowed zero interactions. That’s basically how it was at one point in time with the British laws as well.
Now they allow for a witch or wizard to reveal the truth to the spouse. But that wasn’t always the case. This was sure to please the purebloods since it would be hard to marry somebody that you would have to hide your nature from.
5 No Enforcement Spell Around the Muggle Prime Minister
Fans of Harry Potter are well aware that there are two Prime Ministers. One is for the Ministry of Magic, and the other is the muggle Prime Minister. The two ministers talk with the Ministry, one having permission to reveal the truth to the muggle one.
There are no spells or enchantments placed upon the Muggle Prime Minister. The assumption is that they will never speak of it – for fear of looking insane. This is also a figure with an immense amount of power, so this seems like a risky decision. After all, what’s to stop them from trying to start a new witch hunt?
4 How To Help and Protect Muggles?
One of the major premises behind the Statute of Secrecy is that it protect muggles from witches and wizards. This would only apply to those that are willing to comply with the laws, which is actually a problem.
We saw during Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows that witches and wizards were encouraged to step up and protect the muggles around them, by casting protective spells and the like. This is a lot more difficult to do when they must do it unnoticed. Perhaps a war clause should be added in to allow easier protection during extremely dangerous moments?
Perhaps the most frustrating problem with the Statute of Secrecy is that it doesn’t seem to take Squibs into account. Where do they fall, in regards to these laws? Back when there was no integration allowed, were they allowed to be with wizards? With muggles? Or neither? We’re so confused (and a little bit concerned).
There also don’t seem to be that many rights or concerns, when it comes to Squibs. They basically seem to be ignored in the laws and eyes of the Ministry.
2 The Methods of Tracking Underage Magic
The method of tracking underage magic is perhaps the most confusing – and easily abused. Apparently, the tracking is less precise than one might imagine. Otherwise, Harry never would have been blamed for the magic that occurred within his muggle home. You would think that they’d be forced to come up with a better way of tracking their students and their magic. This imprecise method doesn’t seem to work, and theoretically, a student in a wizard family could easily practice magic at home and just have the Ministry assume that it’s the adults within the home.
And while we’re at it, how come they don’t seem to mind if children use magic before the age of eleven? We’ve seen Harry lose control – though he had a good reason for doing so. We imagine he’s not the only child to get put in a situation that would cause control issues. Does the Ministry typically allow exceptions, or is Harry that special? That hardly seems fair if that is the case.
1 Rappaport’s Law
Rappaport’s Law is the law added to the Statute of Secrecy in 1790. This was the infamous law that forced witches and wizards to completely separate themselves from no-majs. This is a law specific to America, but it’s still a baffling law. We understand what caused it – all the tension in America made it unsafe for magical beings at that time. However, it is also extreme.
Especially when one considers the fact that the law wasn’t repealed until 1965. This seems like an awful that shouldn’t have gone on for nearly as long as it did.