One local witch says the problem is that there’s no such thing as a curse, and if you believe in them, that’s your curse. A local warlock says it doesn’t matter if you believe in curses or not — you can’t say with conviction that another person’s convictions are wrong.

And the Salem Police Department — well, they say none of that matters because the city ordinance clearly states that psychics can only forecast the future and read the past.

Curses are a strict no-no.

But the controversy does not stop there, for a police detective has dared to utter what is a loaded word in the local occult economy: fraud.

For those who make their living selling psychic services to paying customers, the term lives on a slippery slope.

“If they’re a fraud, then we’re all frauds, and all religion is a fraud,” said Christian Day, a local warlock who owns two witch shops in Salem and is known for riding around town on a Segway in his full witch regalia.