The whole Salem witch trials event is so preposterous and at the time, I think even the most pious people didn’t really believe in witchcraft but they were simply bored and like modern day society, they were looking for ways to bring others down. The Puritan society created almost no opportunity for creativity or imagination. In response, the girls who danced in the woods have strong imaginations and were probably getting out some pent up energy. When caught participating in this sinful behavior, they have to fake their stories to extremes, whipping up their imaginations and even they begin to believe in them(they truly fear the yellow bird in the roof of the courtroom).
This story is still relevant today. One of the consistent messages Hawthorne presented was how widespread this circle of blame could spread. No one was safe. Neighbor, family, and friend accused another of bewitching them, knowing that their punishment would be lessened or disappear if the attention was taken off them. Witchcraft was a fabrication and the same principle of not taking responsibility for one’s actions and faults still holds true today. Evidence of this can be found everyday- how parents blame teachers for their children’s problems, how criminals blame the victim for making it so enticing. I also recently read about how the US deals with terrorists, requiring for them to point a finger at another in exchange for leniency. The person succumbing to this system is at fault, but really the people in charge are, who are creating this environment, bear a large amount of blame. I think Danforth is at the heart of the matter in the Crucible; not deeply considering the townspeople’s pleas that it is deceit and therefore, abusing his power. It takes the event to go beyond repair for the matter to be solved or go back to normal and since everyone in Salem is prey to becoming a victim, the story must end with a crumbling of events.