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#463000 - 03/23/14 12:23 AM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1478
Loc: New England
Originally Posted By: Chase Eric
... I thought it was a civil discussion on a hot topic, and congratulate everyone here for keeping it balanced.
I stand corrected. Perhaps I've just come to expect tempers to flare around these subjects. You guys are evolving so fast, I can't keep up!

Be well,

Jude
_________________________
"But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day
....it's life's illusions I recall, I really don't know life at all. "
Joni Mitchell

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#463002 - 03/23/14 12:46 AM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
SoccerStar Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 915
Loc: New York
I feel if there's anywhere on Earth where this topic is to be brought up, it should be here.

Trigger warning for severe child abuse (attempted murder?) by one Fred Phelps:

http://www.blank.org/addict

Quote:
Mark Phelps feels nauseated whenever he remembers that night. He was hit over 60 times and his brother, Nate, over 200 with a mattock handle. Nate went into shock. Mark didn't. A boy who became a compulsive counter to handle the stress, Mark counted every stroke. His and Nate's. While their father screamed obscenities and his brother screamed in pain. Every 20 strokes, their mother wiped their faces off in the tub. Nate passed out anyway. That was Christmas Day.

Though he believes he should be the next governor of Kansas, Pastor Phelps has never believed in Christmas. A mattock is a pick-hoe using a wooden handle heavier than a bat. Fred swung it with both hands like a ballplayer and with all his might. "The first blow stunned your whole body," says Mark. "By the third blow, your backside was so tender, even the lightest strike was agonizing, but he'd still hit you like he wanted to put it over the fence. By 20, though, you'd have grown numb with pain. That was when my father would quit and start on my brother. Later, when the feeling had returned and it hurt worse than before, he'd do it again. "After 40 strokes, I was weak and nauseous and very pale. My body hurt terribly. Then it was Nate's turn. He got 40 each time. "I staggered to the bathtub where my mom was wetting a towel to swab my face. Behind me, I could hear the mattock and my brother was choking and moaning. He was crying and he wouldn't stop." The voice in the phone halts. After an awkward moment, clearing of throats, it continues: "Then I heard my father shouting my name. My mom was right there, but she wouldn't help me. It hurt so badly during the third beating that I kept wanting to drop so he would hit me in the head. I was hoping I'd be knocked out, or killed...anything to end the pain. "After that...it was waiting that was terrible. You didn't know if, when he was done with Nate, he'd hurt you again. I was shaking in a cold panic. Twenty-five years since it happened, and the same sick feeling in my stomach comes back now..." Did he? Come back to you?

"No. He just kept beating Nate. It went on and on and on. I remember the sharp sound of the blows and how finally my brother stopped screaming... "It was very quiet. All I could think of was would he do that to me now. I could see my brother lying there in shock, and I knew in a moment it would be my turn. "I can't describe the basic animal fear you have in your gut at a time like that. Where someone has complete power over you. And they're hurting you. And there is no escape. No way out. If your mom couldn't help you...I can't explain it to anyone except perhaps a survivor from a POW camp."
_________________________
My story

"Don't think it hasn't been a little slice of heaven just because it hasn't!" --Bugs Bunny

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#463018 - 03/23/14 09:54 AM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Rustam]
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
Rustam- my friend, we need no apology. I understood exactly where you were coming from with your statements. I agree with you that there is really no standard for determining who is sincere in their religious beliefs and who is not, or any belief as far as that is concerned.

Phelps believed as strongly in his convictions evidently as I have become in mine, and even my spiritual beliefs differ with my others here on MS.

Matt,- I read the excerpt of the interview with Phelp's son you posted. Stories of this nature seldom cause the emotional response I experienced when I read his words.

Perhaps it was because we are all aware of how cruel his father was and the fact that we have seen his hate unfold for all the world. I teared up and felt this man's heartbreak. A mother who was so afraid she wouldn't stop the abuse or take the children out harm's way, and a father who so hated his own offspring that he was willing to take them to death's door. Who can help but cry?
_________________________
For now we see through a glass, darkly.



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#463024 - 03/23/14 01:03 PM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
Rusty563 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/11
Posts: 200
Loc: Anywhere, USA
I just read the story about Nate and Mark Phelps, and, as a preacher's son, not to mention a survivor of sexual abuse (not by my father), my heart breaks for them because though my father became a Christian when my brother and I were young, his violent physical abuse never changed. Most of his abuse was heaped on me than my brother (in a moment of repentance he confessed that he just didn't like me).

Consequently, I grew up desperate for male love and attention and THAT made me an easy mark for the monsters that saw my vulnerability and either attempted or succeeded in violating me.

My point being is this: alleged Christians that abuse innocents are the most ungodly people to walk this earth and turn more people away from the possibility in believing that there is a loving God, than setting His example.

Who can deny that Mother Theresa was one of the most beautiful examples of the love of Christ. Billy Graham? A preacher who never brow beat people into believe and trust (btw - did you know that he kept himself guarded from ever being caught alone with a woman?). And then there's that hateful, violent, ungodly, and his ilk, Phelps.

Oh, my brothers, my belief and disbelief is my own business, but I'm speaking out from the perspective of a man who, from the age of 9, was immersed in Christian life and have seen the worst and best of that community. Albeit it has left me a bit jaded and cynical but I care so much for you that I'm will to risk your understanding or admonishment.

(((you)))

Love, Rusty
_________________________
There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you - Maya Angelous
Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed - Martin Luther King
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5qF_qbaWt3Q
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KDOkMSf-F14

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#463032 - 03/23/14 02:18 PM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
(((Rusty)))

Our stories aren't all that different. Like the phrase, "my belief and disbelief is my own business".... cause it is.
_________________________
For now we see through a glass, darkly.



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#463060 - 03/24/14 04:28 AM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
1lifenow Offline


Registered: 03/07/11
Posts: 393
Loc: west coast
I will try this again

One of my very best friends is a minister. perhaps the kindest guy i know. I respect him as a man, as a friend and i respect his right to believe whatever he wishes and practice whatever faith he feels calls him. I respect everyones right to express their opinion on this site but just as i don't agree with all the perspectives, i also do not agree that someone's faith should be respected cart blanche.

The whole point of Phelps life and death is the he was Right!

Right and entirely justified to spew his hate with full scriptural references chapter and verse. He followed his faith to the max! God in the bible is about hate and jealously with a love caveat in only for those willing to suspend rationality and "believe". You can be a child rapist and accept Jesus Christ as your personal lord and saviour and bobs ur uncle you get past St. Peter at the gates. Live a righteous life in the service of others without Christ and your SOL. How is this morality. How is Phelps wrong?

Trigger warning:
Like a survivor who is told " this is how I show love"," this is how men show men to be men". "This is the rod of god" as the priest rapes my fellow survivor who was six year old, it's coercion at its most evil. Threatening a child with the possibility of eternal damnation with the only crime of not believing seems nothing less than cruel. There is no question there are messages of love for your fellow man, but this is in no way unconditional. Survivors compartmentalize the abuse and the effects for self protection , the faithful compartmentalize their religious beliefs from any real sense of rationality.

The bible , Koran , Book of Mormon , bagavadgita and watchtower are all equal in their complete and utter lack of a grasp of reality. There is no way they cannot be mutually exclusive. So either one is right, which is not possible to determine or all are wrong which is entirely more likely.

As I told my children , teach one religion you indoctrinate , teach many you in innoculate !
So you can pull this verse or that to justify whatever viewpoint you want but they all share no basis in reality or rationality. None!

It's not that religious people aren't intelligent cuz of course they are. Their religion is almost always based on where they were borne and what denomination their parents follow, trying being a muslim in utah or a jew in mecca. They have been made to swallow so much fallacy as survivors were made to swallow the concept that just because if may have felt good, it was ok . Both are child abuse both are adult abuse.

So I respect men for who they are based on what their actions are, not their rhetoric. I have a childhood friend who is a wealthy mennonite. He contributes $50 G's a year to a mexican orphanage, he never told me, i found out through a mutual friend. That is a class move worthy of respect.

The big fallacy Phelps and frankly any religion peddles is the promise of eternal life which is entirely based on a fear of death. Living in Fear is mostly what survivors strive to get over. The fear of what others think of you, the fear of openly and honestly expressing your sexuality without having to feel shame, the fear of if they know who you really were deep down they would hate you. Fear of just being accepted for who we are. All this fear is paralyzing. How many of us lived frozen lives for so many years? The reality , the true reality is all we have is TODAY. Fred phelps wasted his today's using scripture to justify his fag self hate. Moreover, Fred phelps expected that we should respect his myopic world view. That is ludicrous.

I will never respect something people are expected to believe without evidence , common sense or reason. Religious apologists will justify slavery (it was indentured survitude or the spoils of war " , or anything else that makes them squirm to push the square peg into the round hole. Slavery and many other things scripture is used to justify is wrong when its wrong. period.

Phelps' sad corpse is now a sorry addition to the scrapheap of self haters that use religion to justify their vitriol. He joins the likes of the exodus crew, ted haggard, markus bachman and so many more self flagellates stretching back to the point in time where being just who you were was no longer acceptable because of a "better way".

Halley didn't discover Halley's comet but he used Isaac Newton's mathematical principles to predict the return of the comet, at the exact time several years after his death and at the precise moment in the sky where it would appear. Has any religion, prophet, seer made such predictions since the bronze age? Were any talking snakes, burning bushes, desert Jinns, or spontaneous conversion into salt pillars, transubstantiations or any other so called miracle of any type anywhere able to be corroborated and shown to be anything other and either a myth or natural forces? Before Newton, the heavens were said to move by the direct hand of a force greater than ourselves in a way past our ability to understand. The great watchmaker in the ski. Then came the law of gravity and the great unknown became as all things are, natural forces moving inanimate objects. Then again , it could just be about the pickets marching up and down across from the funerals of fallen heroes.

As a survivor, the need for factual , objective information on how to deal with a wounded psyche is so important. One can begin to understand that the compartmentalization of those experiences and feelings was incredibly detrimental to our development as men. We can chose to keep it that way or begin to slowly understand, what we once thought was "just the way we are" was part of the shame we felt for what we went through. Its the same process for the Fred Phelps's severe biblically based hatred. It is part of the mental gymnastics we primitive humans still do. When asked how he explains his devoutly religious beliefs in the face of being the so-called father of the human genome project, Francis Collins just simply says he doesn't think about those two things at the same time.

One of the most self evident things i have come to discover on this road to recovery is that compartmentalization of any kind is not conducive to an easier route, it just isn't.

To paraphrase Shakespeare i just have to add that All those WBC placards, signs and posters are perhaps the greatest example of
"HE DOTH PROTEST TOO MUCH" the world has ever witnessed.


Edited by 1lifenow (03/24/14 04:32 AM)
_________________________
The need for love lies at the very foundation of human existence. Dalai Lama

WoR Barrie 2011

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#463067 - 03/24/14 08:15 AM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
don64 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/09/13
Posts: 578
Loc: St. Croix, USVI
Well, I will try this again, too.

The point of my original response to Rustam was that this is not set up to be a spiritual or religious forum, but gay/bi/trans issues. However, it has turned into a total religious discussion. 1Lifenow, I agree totally with your post, however it does not reflect who I am spiritually. And, I'm not interested in pursuing that here. The reason I am hesitant about religious discussions is they cannot comply with any logic because they have totally to do with what cannot be seen, but implied.

I am a very spiritual person, remain connected with divine energy most of the time, and spirituality is a major part of my life. Not religion. However, everyone has their own take on it, and religions have centuries of beliefs poured into their congregants. So, I don't see any way to have easy conversations around religions. I personally have great difficulty with religions. They all pretty much require a conduit for a connection to divine energy--pastor, priest, rabbi... I don't buy it.

So, given that everyone is speaking a different language, communication is difficult. I would like to just say that energy of hatred is something I find horrifying to institutionalize. I grew up the son of a Southern Baptist Preacher/retired marine, and was horrified at the hatred and damnation that spewed from the pulpit. Both my parents also sexually abused me, physically abused me, and tortured me.

Now, I don't judge them any more. The were/are very, very damaged people, and could only work with who they are/were based on their own experiences.

Whenever religion comes into the picture, it seems the conversation always somehow devolves into good and evil. Good and evil is simplistic for me. I choose a model of illness and health. Illness and health can leave out the emotionalism and judgment central to religions and focus on what actually can promote health and love in the world, IMHO.

So, I have to put my two cents in because if I don't, I imply that I don't have feelings on the issues here, when I do. I have no investment in anyone seeing the world as I do, and I do not judge in any way how anyone else views the world, creation, religions, etc. But, I do intend to make space for ME in the world.

Sending you all love and good will,

Don
_________________________
Divine Law is not judgment or denial of self truths. Divine Law is honoring harmony that comes from a peaceful mind, an open heart, a true tongue, a light step, a forgiving nature, and a love of all living creatures. Jamie Sams & David Carson, Medicine Cards

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#463075 - 03/24/14 11:19 AM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: don64]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1283
I find strong points of agreement with both 1LifeNow and Don. While I am not religious in the sense that I do not participate or affiliate with an organized effort, I respect others who do - sometimes very deeply. To me, just because I don't "believe" does not define others as wrong or misled. A truly devout person is only following a different journey to the heart than I am.

I think that Don asks a valid question about why we are discussing religious issues here. My answer would be that nothing exists in a bubble. The WBSCC (Westboro Baptist So-Called "Church") is a good example. They seem to exist solely to condemn the effects of a "fag nation" along the lines of their interpretation of the scriptures. I think the conversation is worth having, because I suspect the religious community and the gay/bi/trans community share the common struggle of fighting for understanding and acceptance.

Railing against religion in a general way to me is dangerously close to the kind of persecutions we as gays and lesbians often endure - the lack of any effort to exercise deeper insights, the summary dismissal of another's journey through the ineloquence of rash, superficial judgments. They come out as hurtful soundbites with little intellectual depth. I see it on both sides of the fence, and the paradox is that it seems that each side is blind to anything other than their own sensitivities. Maybe that's what happens when one is embattled and defensive. The great challenge to either community is to reach outside their own limited perspectives. The native American proverb Do not judge another until you have journeyed for two moons in his moccasins is simple and true.

I would argue that is precisely where Fred Phelps failed. He railed against gays indiscriminately, for whatever reason, unable to listen to any other perspective than his own. If anyone deserved equal treatment right back, it would certainly be easy to argue that case for Mr. Phelps. But a better statement is to act from the heart. There are good and bad people in the Church. And there are good and bad people in the gay community. When we focus on the bad ones and let them define our perspectives, we neglect the good people. That's just another form of abuse. What others say about us does not define us - it is what we say back to them that does...

.............

If we were reincarnated after death and Fred Phelps showed up at my doorstep as a skinny cat, I would take him in. I'm such a sucker for redemption.

Eirik

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#463082 - 03/24/14 01:24 PM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
don64 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/09/13
Posts: 578
Loc: St. Croix, USVI
Hi Eirik,

I love your post. "What others say about us does not define us - it is what we say back to them that does..." is a level of maturity I aspire to.

Thanks,

Don


Edited by don64 (03/24/14 01:25 PM)
_________________________
Divine Law is not judgment or denial of self truths. Divine Law is honoring harmony that comes from a peaceful mind, an open heart, a true tongue, a light step, a forgiving nature, and a love of all living creatures. Jamie Sams & David Carson, Medicine Cards

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#463084 - 03/24/14 01:46 PM Re: Fred Phelps is Dead [Re: Chase Eric]
Rusty563 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/11
Posts: 200
Loc: Anywhere, USA
Possible triggers -

I tried to come up with so many ways to put my 2 cents in again but everything I thought of to say started a trigger so I may drop from this thread but suffice it to say that I confided to a close pastor friend of mine and my wife's what happened to me and, because I went willingly with the teacher that raped me and the john that paid me for a bj, I had sinned. I was devastated. But! According to him, I didn't commit a sin with the priest that raped me.

I believe that if there is God in heaven that thinks my rapes were sinful acts like Fred Phelps, then He is not a God that I wish to worship. Where was He when I was being groomed? Where was He when I was seeking answers about my sexuality? Where was He when I was made into somebody's bitch? Hmmmm?

I've agonized for years about my sexuality. I begged and pleaded with God to forgive my "sin" and I never felt any peace. I did get married but It wasn't until 4 years ago, after decades of depression, rage, attempted suicides, hospitalizations, addiction, and misdiagnosis' that I found out that I was a victim of SA and NOT a sinner and that I have PTSD because of the abuse.

I don't know if this disclosure is on point or not. It was just as much as I could say without bottoming out. Luckily I have an appointment with my therapist in an hour or so.

Rusty


Edited by Rusty563 (03/24/14 01:47 PM)
_________________________
There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you - Maya Angelous
Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed - Martin Luther King
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5qF_qbaWt3Q
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KDOkMSf-F14

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