It’s been several days since I’ve written my last entry. I’ve been extremely busy lately with the release of a novella I’d worked on for Halloween and have been enjoying a couple of days of stress-free yoga and vegging. But tonight, as happens occasionally, I saw something that caught my attention.
Now I had been following the story of the two brothers Lucas Leonard 19 and Chris Leonard 17, who as Christopher testified were for- ‘…14 hours…he and his brother were pummeled in their torsos and genitals with an electrical cord.’ during a ‘counseling session’ all because they wanted to leave a church in upstate New York.
Because they wanted to leave a church.
The medical personnel who worked on trying to save Lucas’ life had mistaken him for a gunshot victim do to the amount of blood they’d seen. His brother Christopher survived the attack but will no doubt be damaged from it.
My heart goes out to both of them. But my heart also goes out to so many people across this country who have been made victims to this type of Fundamentalism and abuse over the years. There are thousands of them out there living lives of quiet agony. Many of them trying to get on with their lives. Many of them no doubt having heard of this case, were triggered with their own terrible memories under the lash of unintelligent, uncompassionate, empathyless fundamental zealots that this country allows, to exist.
For the past almost 15 years this country has been engaging fundamentalist zealots of a different religion in the middle east. But what America refuses to acknowledge – or perhaps are unable to face – is the zealots that live here at home. A great deal of those who exist inside of evangelical circles.
Now when we here in the United States think of religious zealots – we instantly turn our thoughts perhaps to Jim Jones or to David Koresh. But the fact of the matter is zealotry exists in many different aspects of evangelicalism in this country. The hard part is believing that nice man in his suit who carries his Bible or the sweet blue-haired lady who lives down the street – are doing things like this. Or who are sending money to Uganda or Scott Lively’s defense fund. Scott Lively will be standing trial for Crimes against Humanity for his influence in Ugandan politics and praises Russia’s antigay stance that he takes credit for.
And during this political campaign, people have gotten a good dose at what that Evangelicalism looks like as 3/4ths of that community have sworn to vote in Donald Trump. And Trump has garnered support from former Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann as well as support from Tony Perkins’ Focus on the Family as well as support from Liberty’ University’s President Jerry Falwell Jr. and Franklin Graham. (Liberty University’s Law Center will be providing the defense for Mr. Lively).
Now these young men weren’t gay as far as I know. All they wanted to do was just leave. And what they are now and what we’re left with is an unwilling Martyr and a Confessor for their faith. They were kids. One’s dead and the other may wish he was, right now. For what? For what?!
I’ve grown thin on my ability to swallow down the anti-Muslim/ All Muslims are terrorists bit that we hear especially right now in this goat fuck of an election season. Because we have ours. We have plenty of ours. Right now America may not look like Aleppo, no one’s trying to sweep ISIS out of one our cities like they are in Mosul- but that doesn’t matter to those boys, tonight. They were brutalized by terrorists who wanted them, upon pain of death, to confess their sins and stay in their church.
If America has declared a global war on terror – to not sound like a bunch of inconsistent ideologues – it out to start weeding out this crap here that allows this to happen.
I don’t know what the answer is in dealing with these organizations. It happens all the time. But it can’t continue….