“Satan enters through the mind, if you let him. He gets in, if you go that way.”
She then went on to denounce any sort of thinking which is not what she sees as properly Christian. What she means is that we must not think “negative thoughts”. In her view, as it is with all the members of her church, these thoughts are the work of Satan. So if one feels one’s feelings, instead of using motivationalism to control what one feels, then one is submitting to Satan. They have identified as Satan the very aliveness and self-protectiveness which enable us to act in our own interest and to strike back when called to.
The quote above is what was said to me today by a Pentecostal woman, and she really believes it. You will also hear similar statements coming from New Ager’s. Much of our population is committed to denial as a moral virtue. If they are not using motivationalism, Born Again Christianity, or New Ageism, then they are probably on alcohol, drugs, or psychiatric medication. Either way they do not feel their pain and anger, they just stay dissociated. And of course they enforce this mode upon their children as well. Most of their families have a blacksheep, the designated scapegoat, the one who cannot live with the denial systems.
One of the reasons I inserted myself into the Christian Fundamentalist Molestation case was that I saw how much energy the defendant had invested in blacksheeping his eldest daughter. He was jumping around pointing and gesturing, telling me how the whole case was caused because his eldest daughter had a “problem with drugs, alcohol, and sex”. He was indignant and pointing at park bushes and exclaiming that, “She even had sex in the bushes!”
Well yes, at the age of 16 she did do exactly that, and she got caught. A letter went home to her parents and her father completely freaked out. He would be interrogating her beyond the hour of midnight for four months. Then he banished her from the home. So she lived with her maternal grandparents . To further humiliate her he had gotten her to confess to four such outdoor locations. Then he took her to each of them so that he could photograph her.
Then some years later the youngest girl, then in the 8th grade, said something to a counselor at youth center. The counselor was just an intern, but she did exactly what the law required. This is important, because we need to know if the existing protections actually work. She wrote the matter up and then faxed it to Police and Child Protective Services. Over the weeks which followed Police tracked down the eldest daughter. Soon they would be using a different detective to interview each family member. Then multiple felony charges, carrying the possibility of a very long sentence, were filed against the father. All of the charges pertained to the fondling of the three girls.
The defendant had known that I’d stepped into a couple of other matters, so he assumed that I was always pro-defense. Over a number of months I listened to him tell me how he was pouring all his energies into fighting this case. He was doing little else. So I listened and asked very few questions. What he told me was not really evidence. It never really indicated guilt or innocence, and I never asked for that. Rather, I got to see how committed he was to demonizing this eldest daughter and to calling all three of the girls liars. He also blamed the eldest girl for influencing the others.
As the case developed, the eldest daughter got married. Then she got the two younger girls to move in with her. Then she got herself and her new husband appointed as guardians of the two younger girls. The defendant was jumping around exclaiming of this, “Everything she has done with them is *pure malice*!”
Baiting him, “Do you mean turning them against you?”
Putting a Christian Fundamentalist behind bars should be like shooting fish in a barrel, because they live in a different world, one which revolves around who is Saved and who is not, and where such blacksheeping is the norm. I think this is what the DA expected too. Problem is, they still had the resources to hire a highly specialized attorney, someone who does nothing except child molestation and sex crime cases. He has clearly studied family conflicts and learned what the themes are and learned how to turn it all back against the child. He also panders to anti-feminist sentiments within the jury pool. I had not even known that such scum bags lived. I would end up writing about this at great length to the DA, showing her exactly where the vulnerabilities are.
I did say to the defendant, as the trial date was approaching, that I side with the child. I also explained to him that I did not consider the fact that the girls had not mentioned the molestations in earlier meetings with school councilors to be a strike against their credibility. I explained that it is always going to be very difficult for anyone to come forward with such allegations. I knew that his views were simply what he was being told by his defense attorney. But he acted like my idea was something he had never even considered before.
I was uncertain as to what sort of involvement I should have, and I still am not at liberty to disclose all which has transpired. Suffice for now to say that I knew I must not let this opportunity pass. Here was a conflict where a parent was blacksheeping his child, the other parent was following along, and it had escalated to the level of a major felony jury trial. Anytime a child comes forward with an accusation against a parent, they risk being condemned for failure to comply with the self-reliance ethic. Likewise, having grown up in such a church, they had to have internalized the denial ethic. So in coming forward these girls were taking a bold risk. So I knew that they had to be listened to and be believed. I knew that police prosecutors, judges, juries, and journalists all had to see that the public cares about these cases, and that the public is not fooled by the attempts to turn it back on the children, or by the defendant’s invocation of the good father role. I also knew that it was essential that the defendant serve serious time. The whole action could not be in vain. There had to be a serious result.
So I knew then that I must not be AWOL, confessing on the couch while making regular contributions to my therapist’s retirement account. I saw this as a test. Am I able to act, or have I also been so damaged by religion, therapy, live and let live, the self-reliance ethic, and by 12-step powerlessness that I am incapable of doing anything more than punching pillows and making affirmations in front of the mirror.
I knew that I had to act, but I was uncertain as to what that might entail. Suffice for now to say, I ended up having extensive communications with the DA, both face to face in the court house hallway, and in writing. The written communications were especially important because I wanted her superiors and colleagues to also read them, to see that the public does care and does understand what is going on.
When the defendant first saw that I intended to attend his trial, he almost lost it in the hallway. He was really angry and physically imposing, closing in on me saying, “I’m on trial for my life. Based on what you have told me, your presence here is going to raise the stress level. It will be like having another DA in the back row.” Though I never replied to him, when he approached me and started in, I looked to where the security cameras were, and made sure that we were in front of one. As far as what he said, he had no idea how right he would be. I have extended myself very far in becoming involved in this. Right now though I can only disclose a few aspects of what this had entailed. I will explain some of these.
I would write to the DA about how strong the relationship is between the defendant’s type of thinking, and the ideas prevalent in their church. I explained that most all the families in their church have a blacksheep. I explained how learning to live in one’s skin is a life’s work, but that this defendant belongs to a church committed to exactly the opposite. I explained that the problem he has with his eldest daughter is not that she experimented with drugs and alcohol. Her use of such was far less than his. That is of course before he got Saved. His problem with her is that she is not like the other blacksheep children of their church. Her life does not completely revolve around drugs and alcohol.
Likewise, the problem is not that at the age of 16 she had sex with a boyfriend. Rather it’s that she is not like the other blacksheep of their church, someone who has never known anything other than a futile quest for connection via destructive sexual relationships. Because she has not been completely destroyed, she is a threat to her father. I emphasized that when the three daughters first came forward with their complaint of sexual molestation, the mother tried to send all of them to “eye movement desensitization therapy”, an obvious brain washing technique.
I explained to the DA that the sexual molestations were not just for the defendant’s own gratification. Rather, he wanted to make the girls like him. Especially with the eldest, he needed her to feel that her own sexual desires were dirty, were the work of Satan. And he wanted her to live in the hell of having her own sexual experience bound up with him. Otherwise she would not have to live the sort of loveless and moralistic life that he has led.
If this goes the way I want, I’m going to be taking credit for it and bragging to everyone I have contact with. I’ll be tracking which facility he is in. I’ll be telling people where he is, how long he is in for, and about everything I did to help get him there.
We no longer have a working class in this country. Maybe for immigrants it still exists, but not for anyone else. So instead we have both an underclass and an untouchable caste. These do not offer the dignity and social standing which the working class once did. Living without dignity and social standing means continual pain and extreme vulnerability. As such, the people have to be controlled, kept passivated. The primary tools used to do this would seem to be alcohol, drugs, psychiatric medication, motivationalism, and born again christianity. Huge numbers of people swim in these realms. Usually they operate in the intersections, playing one off against the other. I wrote to the DA that their church does everything by having people hold hands in a prayer circle. I explained that with some of the people you can just about see the beads of sweat running down their foreheads as they are trying so very very hard to become good Christians. I explained that after such prayer circles there are going to be some really screwy people on high horses. It’s not at all uncommon that there are problems. When there are, someone will exclaim, “This is all the work of Satan.” I reminded her that the defendant likes to cast out demons.
Here we see a Senator Ted Cruz from Texas who is trying to advance himself and his party by targeting America’s underclass and trying to make deep cuts to one of our few social programs, Food Stamps.http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/pat-...cut-food-stampshttp://thinkprogress.org/economy/2013/06...epublican-cuts/
If he succeeds, those who are already the most marginalized will become even less able to fight back, as they’ll be even more driven into the arms of the born again’s simply because they need to eat.
Of course all of this relates to the sorts of inscriptions made by the family. There is a forceful campaign against awareness and feeling which is always in play. One is to feel and think what one is supposed to feel and think. And of course the ones who cannot do this with motivationalism and christianity alone, will end up as the blacksheep, using drugs and alcohol. Some will end up on psychiatric medication too. Some of the blacksheep will remain in the underclass, but others will descend into the untouchable caste, living under bridges, on river ways, and often being in jails and psychiatric hospitals.
So you have two cultures where the family is making inscriptions. One is this underclass which lives via denial assisted by chemicals and by things like born again christianity. The other is the middle class which lives by doctrines like attachment, nurturing, empathy, and communications skills. That is, it lives by liberal pedagogy. Most people see liberal pedagogy as the remedy for the older pedagogy of innate moral defect. But both pedagogies produce the same result, people whose highest value in life is the self-reliance ethic, the work ethic, the live and let live ethic. What both groups reject most strongly is redress, doing anything to take forcefully take back one’s civil and social standing. Instead they would rather submit and live in the very small and compromised space which is left, according to the self-reliance ethic.
Most people who are critical of the working class family try to promote liberal pedagogy. One of the most important contributions of Alice Miller was to show that all pedagogy, including liberal pedagogy, serves the needs of the parents. It makes it look like the child is being respected, but really the child is being manipulated and used, and left in a condition where unscrambling what has happened will be extremely difficult.
Another factor which made this Christian fundamentalist molestation case so interesting was that this family was not really of the underclass. They were actually doing quite well, and except for the minimum of college education, would generally pass as middle class. The defendant had always been employed in white collar capacities and they lived quite high on the hog. Usually child protection laws do not reach such people. What Louise Armstrong writes is that child sexual molestation cases are usually the only type covered by the Child Abuse and Neglect Act where the defendant will have the ability to hire a private attorney.
Further, it was evident to me that all of the defendant’s views were simply his own reactionary thinking. I mean, he really should have known better. He should not have demonized his eldest daughter and eldest son. He should not have treated them like they were in prison. He should not have tried to advance a hard line religious fundamentalist position. He should not have had any contact at all with religious fundamentalism. He should not have been fondling his daughters. He should not have been trying to hide behind marriage and family. He should not have been using religion and motivationalism as an opiate, any more than he should have been using alcohol and drugs.
Generally I am in favor of more leniency in our criminal justice system. I am not actually calling for any new penalties or enhancements. The new areas I want to impose accountability on parents are all civil. But I also saw that the blacksheeping type of defense this defendant was deploying must be defeated. I saw that we will never get the accountability which I want to see, unless we start standing with the child victims. So I knew that I had to act.
I tried to get other people involved, but they all declined.
At this guy’s church they are all firm believers in Satan.
More people will read a post if the word “Satan” is used in the title.
These girls must have listened to the original recordings almost as many times as I have. The girls I’ve known were certainly not like this. But that says more about me than it does them. Their neuroticism was only a reflection of my own. Neuroticism is the basis of all reactionary thinking. It’s also the only genuine mental illness.
Now what I seek are comrades, not more commiserators.
Fighting Born Again Christianity by Land, Sea, and Air,
When Awareness is Not a Choicehttp://z6.invisionfree.com/awarenessnotachoice/index.php?