Category Archives: Discussion

Guilt, Shame, Prevention, and the Burden of Educating Others

In a very helpful newsletter, Cecil Murphey of Shattering the Silence stated that the following statements irritate him:

“You don’t need to feel guilty.”
“You have no reason to feel ashamed.”

I agree. I get both statements said to me often and they irritate me, too. These people mean well, mostly; at least the ones who aren’t saying it in a “man up, get over it” way.

I think what they are trying to say is, “It wasn’t your fault.” But saying it the way they do comes across to me like a glib attempt to “tell me how to feel” and it doesn’t help at all. It certainly doesn’t make the guilt and shame magically go away. I suppose it’s ignorance of how to help on their part, so I try to educate.

Cecil Murphey suggested (linked above) that saying, “I’m sorry you’re hurting” is better, and I agree. He explained that as children, we didn’t know we were not to blame. So we naturally blamed ourselves as children do, and guilt and shame gained a foothold.

Most of us were told we were to blame by our abusers, often people we trusted, and maybe even loved. Then guilt and shame took root – during the delicate formative years. We don’t choose to feel guilt and shame, and we can’t “decide” to stop feeling that. Does it make sense to say to a child with a broken arm, “You don’t need to have a broken arm”? It won’t be fixed because you said that. They need a cast and they have to go through the mending and healing and not try to climb trees until the healing is done.

Sometimes I realize that survivors need to educate people on how to help, and I try to; but most times I’m too busy trying to deal and heal to worry about it. I often wonder, “Why does the burden to educate and inform the public so often fall on the shoulders of the survivors who, quite frankly, have enough on their plate?”

It seems survivors are also the majority of people teaching others how to keep their children safe from predators. At times, the willingness of parents to put fingers in their ears and say, “It can’t happen to my kid” makes me very upset. Self-care is vital in this jungle.

Then the language of the education can also be problematic. Most prevention advocacy talks of “parents, watch out for these signs of predatory abusers” but rarely do they mention that parents can often be the predatory abusers of their own children. For a survivor of incest abuse, it is very hard to read that stuff.

The important part, to me, is trying to learn better how to help and prevent, and to move forward in eliminating child abuse, rape, and all other forms of crimes against children.

Most survivors want to help with this, it often helps us to help others; but we do have a lot on our plates just to keep breathing and heal. It would be wonderful to see more people, especially those who are not survivors themselves, helping to end, and prevent, child abuse.

I know it’s frightening and unpleasant to think about an abuser harming your child or kids you know. It’s far more horrible to become an abused child. Which is worse? (Trust me, being abused is worse.) Learning about it to prevent it is far better than doing nothing out of squeamishness only to find out your child was abused. Damage from abuse (especially of children) can last a lifetime and affect every aspect of the child’s life. “It can’t/doesn’t happen in my town” doesn’t and can’t help the children at risk in your town.

Isn’t prevention worth more than scrambling after a non-existent cure? Isn’t prevention and the safety of children worth some discomfort? I’d sincerely like to know; but too many people have their fingers in their ears and can’t hear the question – or the cries of abused children.

~ ~ ~

© W.R.R. 12/11/2013
For all survivors of any form of rape or abuse; you are not alone. Seek help. Speak out. Find your path to healing.

www.AsAshesScatter.com
wrr@asashesscatter.com
@AsAshesScatter

Please read the Comment Policy before submitting a comment to the moderators. For more about me, you are welcome to read my story and visit the About page.

Thank you for reading.


Sex Ed, Consent, Responsibility: Can We Teach Them in Healthy Ways?

***Trigger Warning for child sexual abuse***

Consent can be taught without implying our sons are potential rapists. This is a fact that is ignored by many.

After reading this:

An Open Letter to My Son About Sex via the Good Men Project, 8/24/13 by Janis Whitlock, I was inspired to share my thoughts. Normally, I read the comments – even when they go over 300, but for self-care reasons I stopped reading these. For the record, “most” child sexual abuse survivors do not grow up to abuse kids, and “most” predators of children were not abused as kids. There is a pitiful amount of ignorance about this in those comments. Please educate yourself on abuse myths and statistics; that is the whole point of this post, after all: education and being proactive about it.

As a general disclaimer, I should add that as a male survivor of incest, with my mother as one of my abusers, the simple and usually benign notion of a mother talking about sex to her son basically creeps me out. That aside, I am also a dad of four kids, two girls and two boys, and they do need education, healthy information and facts; especially on abuse prevention and combatting child-harming deviants. Their mother and I handle most of this together, and our kids know they can ask either of us anything, or tell us anything.

The above linked article is a mother’s letter about sex to her son. In my opinion, it goes from “let’s have a healthy talk about sex not being bad” to “you are a boy so please don’t rape anybody” in 0 to 60 seconds. The whole letter isn’t bad, just certain parts, and I object to the saturation of anti-porn sentiment (porn depicting adults being legal) and the writer’s opinions being presented almost as facts. Teens are going to try to look at porn, the curiosity for boys and girls is already there. Also, if you haven’t talked to your son enough to already know he isn’t the raping type, how can you be sure he even likes girls? Maybe sex isn’t the only thing he’s been afraid to talk to you about?

In particular, it’s irresponsible for a person to make sweeping generalizations about what “all” or even “most” other women or men like or don’t like based on the letter writer’s own preferences and turn-offs, and then teach them as “facts”. Kids shouldn’t be required to become little copies of their parents or care-givers, after all. What if your son has a girlfriend who likes some things on your “women don’t like this” list? Will he think she is weird or gross? That’s not healthy either, right? Can we also stop pretending that only boys are curious about sex?

However, my main point is this: a healthy age-appropriate sex talk and abuse prevention education should include education on consent. There is a healthy way to do this and a damaging way. Saying anything that sounds to a young male like “you’re a boy, so please remember not to trip over your hormones and rape a girl” has no place in a sex-positive educational talk to a teen boy. Odds are, if we’ve raised them to understand, give, and receive respect for themselves and others, our kids won’t grow up to be rapists, killers, bullies, or jerks.

Another thing that is often forgotten or bypassed is that young girls also need to be taught about consent. Their consent and the consent of others are equally important. How many times have little girls kissed little boys when the boys didn’t want them to? Teach everybody about consent, not just the boys.

Finally, we have the ugly situation of many adults not even understanding (or caring about) what constitutes rape and consent. If adults aren’t educated on this, how can we expect kids or teens to know what rape and consent are? I read horror stories in articles on statistics or in the news about men and women who think buying an expensive meal entitles the person to have sex with you, like it or not. Also, far too many adults think a teen boy is “lucky” if his female teacher rapes him – as long as she’s “hot”. Yet if the genders are reversed, most of those people are suddenly outraged. Why?

We as adults need to get educated too, before we try to teach young people. We need to stop teaching them shame and guilt about sex and their bodies. Just because our parents did that, doesn’t mean it should be done to our kids, too. Our kids and teens need to be taught respect for others as well as self-respect. They need to learn that their bodies belong to them and that their bodies and sexuality have value and shouldn’t be indiscriminately given away like they mean nothing.

We also need to change the societal view and pressures that being a virgin is something bad or laughable, a condition to shed, tossing it out like garbage on the junk heap of our lives in some hollow rush to be grown up, to be maybe loved, or to “belong”. I don’t care about “waiting for marriage” in the least. Yet if self-respect and self-worth are taught, perhaps more young people will wait until they feel ready, with or without feeling “in love”. In the absence of pressure and ridicule, perhaps they could make safer and healthier choices.

Sex education, consent education, and abuse prevention education go hand-in-hand, or they should. For those with objections to factual sex ed in schools, do you know you are leaving your children vulnerable to all sorts of traps and tragedies? Abstinence Only doesn’t work. Teen pregnancy rises in any state where that is the only sex ed offered. More importantly, children need to know the proper names for body parts and know how to get help if somebody tries to abuse them. Age-appropriate sex ed and abuse prevention (and consent) can be taught to very young kids, and it needs to be taught to them.

Too many parents don’t find out “it can’t happen to me/in my town/to my kid” isn’t true until after their kid is abused. Don’t make your child pay the price (most often a lifelong and horrible price) for your ignorance and your preference to keep your head in the sand. Learn the warning signs of predatory and grooming behaviors in the people around your children (especially if you think you can trust them). Learn the warning signs of abuse in a child. Talk to your children, let them know they can tell you without fear if somebody is hurting them or making them afraid. This goes for bullying, mental health issues, etc. How many parents have found their child dead from suicide because of endless bullying and the parents never knew the child was being bullied, or never knew the child had mental problems or was being abused, because the child was afraid or ashamed to tell? Also, many kids do tell and are often not believed. Don’t teach your child that telling you they need help will not get them help.

Our kids need these types of education desperately. Many adults need them, too. The “birds and bees” sex talk dreaded by so many is far easier to have when you have already educated them on basic body parts, abuse prevention, and respect, long before they turn twelve or fourteen. Sadly, many parents skip those talks entirely and allow society and the media to teach their children, out of embarrassment. If you don’t teach your child, somebody or something else will. Some kids get taught ugly lifelong lessons by abusers, or stumble through pitfalls that a little guidance could have helped them to avoid.

One final point on rape: males aren’t the only ones who rape. Females aren’t the only victims of rape. This is a fact, whether you accept it or not. Telling boys “learn not to rape” is awful. It is in direct opposition to the intention of having a sex-positive talk with your son. Teach consent and sex ed. Foster a relationship where they feel safe to ask questions. Don’t make them think you believe their natural and good sexuality is nasty or potentially evil. That worms into the mind of kids and teens and does some ugly psychosexual damage. Imagine telling your daughter, “Try not to rape anybody.” You wouldn’t do that? Then please don’t say or imply this to your son, either.

I spent most of my life and all of my childhood being raped by adults, men and women. I was four when my father raped me the first time, five when he rented me to others daily. Prior to four, they were training me, grooming me, to accept sexual and physical abuse. At age three, my parents were teaching me how to “service them” sexually. This abuse was all I knew and they lied and said all parents were entitled to sex from their children. That was a pedophile ring, run by my father. They made and sold films and photos and made kids harm other kids in them. It has been an ugly struggle of slow healing to become the dad I am today, and that struggle is ongoing.

When I hear, “Teach men and boys not to rape”, my heart breaks. Teach everybody not to rape. Teach consent and healthy factual age-appropriate sex ed and teach abuse prevention. Learn warning signs…. Before it’s too late.

~ ~ ~

© W.R.R. 9/11/2013
For all survivors of any form of rape or abuse; you are not alone. Seek help. Speak out. Find your path to healing.

www.AsAshesScatter.com
wrr@asashesscatter.com
@AsAshesScatter

Please read the Comment Policy before submitting a comment to the moderators. For more about me, you are welcome to read my story and visit the About page.

Thank you for reading.


Pithy Religious Quotes Need Warning Labels

Due to my issues and damage as a non-religious survivor of child sexual abuse (one of my abusers was a preacher) and as a survivor of rape as an adult, as well as having to deal with all the fallout from those traumas, such as physical, mental, and psychological handicaps, PTSD, phobias, religious triggers, bipolar disorder and occasional fights with suicidal thoughts, I have a big problem with the quote below:

“If you’re thinking about giving up, don’t… because God gave you your life because he knows that you are the only one strong enough to handle it.”

I realize some people think this is “nice comfort”, and they have “good intentions” in sharing it. However, unless you are speaking to peers of your own religion and/or people who also find this sort of thing comforting, I’d like to discourage others from sending this pithy trite quote to strangers who are hurting. Especially if they don’t share your religion, or if religion was part of their abuse or trauma. This should certainly not be said to a person battling thoughts of suicide, more so if you don’t know the person very well.

The quote above reminded me of two topics discussed by the excellent writer Christian Piatt, included with his gracious permission below:

#1 from Ten Cliches Christians Should Never Use here:

Everything happens for a reason.” I’ve heard this said more times than I care to. I’m not sure where it came from either, but it’s definitely not in the Bible. The closest thing I can come up with is “To everything, there is a season,” but that’s not exactly the same. The fact is that faith, by definition, is not reasonable. If it could be empirically verified with facts or by using the scientific method, it wouldn’t be faith. It would be a theory. Also, consider how such a pithy phrase sounds to someone who was raped. Do you really mean to tell them there’s a reason that happened? Better to be quiet, listen and if appropriate, mourn alongside them. But don’t dismiss grief or tragedy with such a meaningless phrase.

#5 from Ten More Cliches Christians Should Avoid here:

The Lord never gives someone more than they can handle. What about people with mental illness? What about people in war-torn countries who are tortured to death? What about the millions of Jews murdered in the Holocaust? And this also implies that, if really horrible things are happening to you, God “gave” it to you. Is this a test? Am I being punished? Is God just arbitrarily cruel? Just don’t say it.”

~ ~ ~

“Happens for a reason” and “God never gives more than you can handle” seem to have been combined and morphed into the first quote at the top.

Stuff like this can push a survivor of abuse or rape, or a suicidal person, right over the edge. As “you were meant to have this suffering” rattles around in a person’s head, ricocheting off of their pain and horror, their abyss of multiple losses, and the hopelessness that trauma and/or mental illness has brought into their lives. Also, like it or not, not all people share your religious views, nor do they have to.

Here is one of the reasons why the quote at the top personally disturbs me:

Now I Lay Me Down

After years of being raped by that preacher (starting when I was five) on most Saturdays, I wince at quite an array of religious-based “comfort quotes”. Considering my father initially raised me from birth to believe that he was my “god”, religious “comforts” can get confusing and upsetting fast.

Here is the key: try to seek to know a little about the person you want to reach out to and hopefully help. Ask them if they are religious, if that is important to you in your life. Then be prepared to respect it if their answer is “No.” Remember that the goal (hopefully) is to help the person. You won’t be able to help them if you disrespect their views and their need for self care. My self care requires an absence of religious jargon. If that is not respected, I am placed in an untenable spot and subjected to unnecessary upset and distress. Also, it often makes me angry. Making others feel pain, distress and anger is generally not the way to “help” them.

So try to get to know them first, respecting their wishes to not let you, if that is the case. Here’s a great quote: “You have to be a friend to make a friend.” Also, the Golden Rule of “Treat others as you want to be treated” applies; so please slap a warning label on your religious quotes collection and ask first if they might be welcome… or not. I know I would thank others for this gift of respect, as that does make me feel that I am being helped.

~ ~ ~

© W.R.R. 8/19/2013
For all survivors of any form of rape or abuse; you are not alone. Seek help. Speak out. Find your path to healing.

http://www.asashesscatter.com
wrr@asashesscatter.com
@AsAshesScatter


“I wasn’t brave”, and the problem of assumed familiarity from strangers….

I want to focus on two things here; being called “brave” by random strangers who don’t know me, and having those strangers act like they’re entitled to behave as if we are best friends on the basis of a few tweets, or in a comment because they read one essay. Do you want to know how to help me feel more comfortable talking to you? In a way that could help you with talking to some other survivors of abuse you may meet? Then please, read on; and thank you for taking the time to do so. As for comments on this blog, please read the Comment Policy.

To those who have already put in the legwork to help me feel comfortable and to become my friends, huge thanks to you. You help me learn how to grow into a “real person” every day, and I couldn’t make it without you. To my fellow survivors, take from this what resonates with you, feel free to ignore the rest.

******************

As a survivor of child sexual abuse, I rarely want to be told I am brave/strong/etc. I realize people are trying to be supportive, encouraging, or complimentary, but it usually feels off to me and falls flat, especially from a stranger or somebody who only knows a few things I’ve written about myself. I typically gloss over and ignore the comment, hoping it will go away. This article by Justin Cascio has helped me grasp a better way of realizing why it bothers me, in particular #5, the “brave” section:

10 things people have said to me that you should never say to a trans person

From a stranger, it does objectify, and seems to be an assumed intimacy that repels me. I am not me to them, I am a cardboard poster boy for “all survivors”, or simply an opportunity for them to feel better about themselves. Also, I don’t see being a survivor as “brave”. The phrase “it takes courage to survive that” irritates me. Actually, all it takes is “not dying yet”, each day. I never felt “brave”. In the end, it feels condescending. (Thanks to Justin for this clarity. I really appreciate his blog.)

As a semi-random point, I’ll add this: I don’t “speak for all survivors”, nor do any of them specifically speak for me. We do often find kernels of truth or common feeling in each other’s words, but it’s a “take what resonates with you and leave the rest” sort of process.

So what to say instead of “you’re so brave/strong because you survived”? Well, for me, I’d rather have my efforts to keep plugging along acknowledged over assumed past “bravery”. Why? Because surviving isn’t a done deal, it’s an ongoing process; and for many of us, it is a lifelong struggle.

Also, I was serious about the “I wasn’t brave as a kid” part. It’s a matter of perspective, in the end. To me, brave would have been trying to run away or refusing to hurt others because they ordered me to. Both of those things would have resulted in my death. So in my mind, what let me survive was closer akin to cowardice, and being told “you were brave” just makes me feel bad, as the truth of my past rises up on cue to negate the “compliment”. Therefore, if the goal is to make me feel better, I’d rather be told, “I’m glad you are still here and it’s great that you do what you can to help others”. Tell me I’m a good daddy, or that you like my poetry, perhaps, if you do. “Brave” is only a lie that haunts me, in tandem with the other ghosts born out of guilt and shame.

Thank you for trying to understand, and for trying to learn that survivors are all different. Maybe somebody else feels better to be told they were “brave enough to survive that”. Maybe they don’t. As I said, none of us are poster representatives for all of us.

The best advice I can give is, if you want to really discuss things with me about abuse and survivorship, make an effort to get to know me. Do some reading here on my blog (without making assumptions) and try not to assume familiarity or display an expectation of intimacy in talking to me before I’ve decided if I feel comfortable with that. It’s the same common courtesy you probably display at any other event where you meet new people. The assumption of intimacy or friendship and the entitlement of expecting me to be buddies just because you believe you’re a decent and safe person, can quickly feel like red flags to me. I often have people exchange three tweets with me and then they seem to assume they are on a par with my support system of people, family and friends, and begin acting like they have the same intimacy privileges that they do. Frankly, that behavior makes me want to avoid those people. So if your goal is to make me feel better, please don’t do that.

If you simply want to ask my views on abuse or survivorship, please still make an effort to allow me to feel comfortable talking to you first. A good start is to do your own research prior, on your own. Speaking to an informed person who asks good questions and wants to discuss issues is a lot more comfortable for me than feeling like a poster boy you randomly want to tell you things to have a passing curiosity satiated. People of that sort are not why I’m here. I am here to try to help others like me or vaguely similar to me, and to help educate those who show some effort in wanting to help, too; especially if they have the goal of learning prevention to keep their own kids safe. That, after all, is the most important thing. Far easier to prevent than to make them endure a lifetime of trying to heal.

Also, please read As Ashes Scatter: My Story and About W.R.R. to learn more about me. It is quite jarring to have a (however well-meaning) stranger assume they know what abuse I suffered on the basis of one tweet.

In conclusion, it is also not helpful or appropriate to ask me how I feel today in reply to a serious tweet about abuse issues, or to offer “religion-based” comfort when you haven’t read the comment policy where I state that that is a trigger for me. I mean no offense, I just need to clarify these points to avoid feeling reluctant to tweet or speak out due to a fear that strangers will start assuming they are “buddies with privileges” and reply to me in ways that make me want to disappear. Thank you for your time and patience, and hopefully, for your understanding.

~ ~ ~

© W.R.R. 7/30/2013
For all survivors of any form of rape or abuse; you are not alone. Seek help. Speak out. Find your path to healing.

http://www.asashesscatter.com
wrr@asashesscatter.com
@AsAshesScatter


Male Rape Exists & It’s Not Going Away If You Ignore It

The following is an expansion of my comment on this excellent article on the Good Men Project, by Kile Ozier:

Men are Being Sexually Assaulted in the Military, but Nobody is Talking About it

I am a male survivor of rape as a child and as an adult, though I was never in the military. I was born into and grew up in a child sex ring, run by my father. I was raped by both men and women as a toddler and older. The first rape was by my father, when I was four years old. By age five, I was rented for sex and used in the making of child porn. There were many children in the ring, and several of them were boys.

The sad truth is that most people just don’t want to hear that males can be and are victims of rape. Even fewer want to hear that some males are raped by females, and not always in a statutory rape situation. These ignorant people believe males should be strong enough to fight off a rapist, even a small boy should be able to fight off a grown man. They don’t seem to hear how ludicrous they sound. A male can be (and they are) raped in many of the same ways a female is raped, such as ambush, weapons used, rape by a person they trust, drunk victims raped, unconscious victims raped, the list goes on….

I believe and stand by everything Kile Ozier said in the article linked above. I fervently wish fear, disgust, ignorance and resentment wouldn’t blind the majority to the particular horrors that male rape victims and survivors face.

Yes, rape is a horror for female victims and survivors, too. Yet most people don’t doubt that a female can be raped. Doubt and even the refusal to believe (for many ignorant reasons) that males can be raped, along with all the sick stigma and demonizing of homosexuals, are the prime reasons male victims and survivors stay silent.

On the subject of stigma, female victims don’t often have their status as “a woman”, in the cultural sense, thrown into question (and ridiculed) because of rape. Male victims and survivors experience this questioning and ridicule nearly every time if they report the crime, whether officially to authorities, or just to people they know. They are also sometimes attacked, even beaten up, because they were raped. I’ve experienced these things personally.

I can call a male rape victim’s silence self-preservation, because it often is exactly that. Male victims also remain silent and fall into drug and alcohol abuse and suicide because males are told they “can’t” show emotion, ask for help, or tell anybody that they are in terrible pain due to rape.

Male rape, just like female rape, isn’t going to go away or stop by ignoring it. It doesn’t matter if the topic makes you uncomfortable. If your neighbor, brother, son, or best male friend were assaulted with a hammer and needed to heal, would you judge, shun or loathe him? Probably not. So why are male victims of rape judged, shunned or loathed? They are the same man or boy you considered a friend or loved family member before the rape.

Why is “gay” all mixed up and demonized in the stigma surrounding male rape? Rape DOES NOT change sexual orientation. Homosexual, bisexual, pansexual, queer and transmen are raped just as straight men are raped. Being “gay” or not has nothing to do with “asking for it” anymore than a woman wearing a short skirt is “asking for it”. Also, when most male rape help resources only cite “Don’t worry, rape can’t make you gay”, that is a stab in the ribs to any homosexual or GBT rape victim or survivor who comes to your site hoping to find help. Perhaps we need an additional “Don’t worry, rape can’t make you straight” platitude for LGBTQ victims/survivors?

Most males who rape males are not “gay”. They are “straight”. Most pedophile males who rape boys are not “gay”, they are “straight”. So please, America, stop making sick rape jokes about a boy “being gay and getting some” because a male pedophile raped him. Also, a boy is not “lucky” if a hot teacher rapes him. Gay or straight, that boy is raped. If you wish to dispute these points, and you are not a male rape victim or survivor, please sit down and go research statistics on male rape.

I also encounter (many times) a certain type of feminist (though not all of them are like this) who get angry in general if male victims and survivors of rape are mentioned in any context, for any reason. This type of feminist, man or woman, tries to silence me and push their agenda right over me. To my ears, their agenda appears to be this: “Only female victims of rape exist, and even if males are raped, they don’t matter as much as female victims.” Now for those who want to jump in and attack me over this paragraph, you may be the problem. Please sit down and go research the prevalence of male rape.

One of the worst stigmas may be the common rape center/org mantra: Teach Men Not to Rape. How about if we teach all people not to rape? Because some women are rapists, and we should teach girls not to rape right alongside the boys. The prevalent and ignorant notion that “only men rape, only women are raped” needs to be stopped, and stamped out. Why? Because, like it or not, some women and girls rape, and some men and boys are raped.

As a male survivor of rape, I am sick of seeing and hearing others say I don’t exist. Male rape victims exist, folks – whether you want to believe it or not. You can’t make us disappear just because the crime that is destroying us too makes you feel uncomfortable.

~ ~ ~

© W.R.R. 5/21/2013
For all survivors of any form of rape or abuse; you are not alone. Speak out. Find your path to healing.

Child sex trafficking rings are real and they exist in all countries of the world. These monsters use living children to make disgusting films and photos, to sell to other monsters. They rape children. They use children to hurt other children, and the guilt and shame can kill. It will still exist… these children will still suffer… whether you choose to know it or not. Please don’t look away. Knowledge is power, power to save the lives of children.

http://www.asashesscatter.com
wrr@asashesscatter.com
@AsAshesScatter


The Bible and Marriage Equality

Scholarly proof the Bible doesn’t hate LGBTQ or Marriage Equality!

Awesome pro-gay marriage posts from real Christians:

http://biblethumpingliberal.com/2012/08/06/about-christians-bigotry-and-homosexual-marriage-dear-sherree/

(The comments on this one above are amazing too, including one Torah scholar discussing the “abomination” misquote anti-gay people use so much).

This one is great too:

http://sacredpause-roger.blogspot.com/2012/07/same-sex-marriage-and-bible.html?m=1

This marriage equality issue and the hate and intolerance shown by so many “Christians” has seriously soured me on religion in general, even without my background of having been abused sexually as a little boy with one of my abusers being a church preacher and most of them were members of a church.

These men who wrote these posts (among a few others) prove that some decent religious people do exist. Just wanted to share….

– W.R.R.
8/8/2012


In Regard to Malcolm Welsford, from a supporter of Adam Lambert

In response to this excellent (and brave) post by Juneau and Xena on the Salon over at On the Meaning of Adam Lambert: Adam Lambert and the quality of mercy

I will post this response in the Salon as well, but I wanted to post it here and on Twitter too, cuz I think I’m not the only one who feels this way.

In regard to the unsanctioned CDs of Adam Lambert’s old demo work produced by Malcolm Welsford:

I can’t support these demo CDs, but I don’t bash, demonize (or unfollow) those who choose to do so. I like Monte a lot, love his solo CDs, and respect his freedom to speak his mind on this matter. Frankly, I also worry that speakin’ his mind as he has may have alienated a lot of Adam’s fans from Monte’s ranks of personal musical support. Yet I still cannot support what Malcolm Welsford, the true culprit, has produced. However, my decision is based on ethics, not just cuz Adam said he didn’t approve of ’em.

This producer, Malcolm Welsford, is sleazy. In yer post on the Salon, Juneau, (read link above) ya mentioned that if Adam hadn’t gotten famous, he’d be happy these CDs were comin’ out. I say, if he hadn’t gotten famous, this man wouldn’t bother to put these CDs out. Adam’s fame (exploitin’ it) is the reason he’s puttin’ ’em out. The exploitation is the reason for the timin’. He has to release ’em before the real deal comes out. Take One, his first spoilin’ of Adam’s thunder, taught him he can make bank if he times it right, and this time the fanbase has grown exponentially, so he stands to make even more money off of Adam in an underhanded manner. He’ll do this by foolin’ the casual fans, the new fans, who won’t know that this is old and unfinished music. The real damage some of his veteran fans are concerned with is that those new fans may think this old demo music really is Adam’s sophomore CD, his Magnum Opus.

For the record, I have a lot of Adam’s older music, and I love it all. The objection isn’t bout the music itself. The objection is a matter of cheatin’ fans and harmin’ Adam’s growin’ reputation as the greatest male singer alive today.

I do worry this could hurt his career some, but I also believe Adam will rise above this mess. His talent is his, housed in his own body. This sleazy producer only has a small slice of his talent in older music. He hasn’t got any claim on the source of that talent. Long after he’s played his grubby little games and run out of older slices of Adam to exploit, Adam will still be puttin’ out new CDs. Also, the caliber of the official music will blow this unfinished demo business into oblivion. I have faith in that.

As for me, I can disagree with my friends and still love ’em, still call ’em my friends. I hope I’m not the only one. For now, it’d be nice if our fandom didn’t tear itself into bits over this one despicable sleazeball. His time is runnin’ out, but Adam’s star has just begun to rise.

~~~

© W.R.R. 10/16/2011
@RagMan_RIP