I get asked almost daily if I'm a good witch or a bad witch, I guess people watch too much Wizard of Oz or just Television in general. The truth is there are both good and bad witches out there and then most of the time the bad witches are people who are misunderstanding of the craft. Can magic be used for bad? Yes it can. Can witchcraft be used for personal gain? Yes it can. Are there witches out there that use it to hurt others? Yes there are. But......
These people, these "bad"witches don't understand the laws of witchcraft, or they do and just don't care. Using magic for personal gain or to hurt others is a very bad idea. The Wiccan Rede states "and harm it none do what ye will". As a witch we are very firm believers in karma. What goes around comes around. We have a belief called the powers of three times three. Meaning that what ever you do comes back to you three times more than you sent out. Would you wish your neighbor to get boils on his butt if it means you could become deathly sick? I hope not. Free will is something you should not mess with. To try to take away the free will of others is not ever good and can back fire on you.
With that said there are binding rituals that can prevent others from hurting other people or themselves. There are also blocking spells that can deflect harm someone wishes towards you with out actually causing them intentional harm. If someone is causing you harm I suggest trying a blocking spell to prevent the harm from reaching you. As long as they have no ill will towards you then they will find no harm on themselves.
Willfully choosing to do what is called "black magic" is inviting bad things into your life. As witches we worship nature and value all life. To harm or even take the life of another living creature is to ask for bad things to happen to you. Nature has her dark side and there are things in the dark you would wish never to find.
There are those individuals out there who pretend to practice witchcraft just for attention. The things they do are a farce and are not true witchcraft. They want to be looked at and they want to cause a stir in others for nothing more than personal gratification. Nothing they do is fruitful. Many of these are adults still acting like children doing things because they want to rebel against others. They give us a bad image and they aren't even real witches! They dress all in black, wear giant inverted pentagrams (or even modified versions), claim to curse people and do other things just to get a sensational reaction out of other people. They are disrespectful and rude and are nothing more than idiots and fools.
If you wish to devote yourself to a pagan way of life you have embrace it as a life style. It is a religion, a belief, a way of existing that requires just as much devout devotion and understanding as any other way of life. You have to accept that not all witchcraft is smoke and mirrors, Harry Potter is not real! For the most part witchcraft is meditations, giving thanks to the Goddess and the God, honoring nature, love, and most of all devoting your whole being to life. we have our feasts, we have our gatherings, but it's not the wild throbbing orgies that some people think it is. We don't conjure demons and send them out to reek hell on those who we wish to hurt. We don't slaughter animals or children, that's old testament stuff and has no place in witchcraft.