The weblog of Joshua Drescher

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June 9th, 2005 · 4 Comments · General, Politics, Rants

RE: The gay kid stuck in the Jesustani Penal Colony.

Wonder of wonders, it looks like a rescue effort is - in fact - underway.

For the past four days, groups of protestors have gathered outside of the Refuge prison compound to show support for this poor kid. And they’ll be out there every day for his entire stay there. No, it’s not exactly an armed storming of the compound, but it’s a damn fine start. In fact, the more I dig, the more I find that this kid’s plight is getting out all over the place.

Which brings up an interesting (and potentially quite heartening) point. This sort of abuse has undoubtedly gone on for many, many years and the kids who’ve been victimized by it have - by and large - suffered in silence and anonymity. These sorts of “programs” rely on being able to isolate the victim, to break them down and make them feel helpless, to remove any sense of individuality, self or hope - but most of all, they rely on the ability to make the victim feel utterly and completely alone.

The fact that (until now) there was very little that could be done to summon assistance for the victims was also necessary to their weird plans. That lack of confrontation made it possible for these sorts of abuses to continue without resistance or interruption. But not anymore.

A scared kid reached out to invisible strangers to tell as much of his story as he could before he was dragged away and silenced. As a result, his experience would be different. He wouldn’t be sent off to face torture and abuse and cruelty alone. When he went in, there was a crowd there to let him know he was loved and supported unconditionally and when he comes back out that same crowd will be there. No amount of asinine dresscodes, disturbing restrictions on human contact or endless barrages of Biblical nonsense can possibly defeat that.

What’s being done is - sadly - entirely legal. Parents have the right to sign their children over to all manner of crazy, damaging and downright malevolent people in the name of discipline or service of God or simple laziness or whatever else. But the veil of secrecy that used to protect these cowards from scrutiny and criticism has been pulled aside. Underneath that veil, there is nothing but anger, hatred and psychological violence - all in the NAME of love. The good news is that this sort of festering, malignant wickedness cannot stand up to scrutiny. Their positions and actions are all built upon their ability to operate in isolation. DO NOT GRANT THEM THAT ABILITY.

For anyone who is a true Christian, what has been exposed here should fill you with shame and righteous anger. Regardless of how you feel about homosexuality, abuse of any kind should sicken and enrage you. Period. Your God (if not your FAITH) does not teach torture and atrocity. Live up to the ideals and creeds you CLAIM to hold holy and dear.

To the folks in Memphis, be incredibly proud. It is truly a great and momentous thing that an army of strangers can be rallied behind one scared, lonely kid who called for help and received it. What you are doing outside that compound is infinitely more loving and “Christian” than anything going on inside its walls.

For EVERYONE, remain vigilant. This sort of thing IS happening near you. Kids need support - loving and UNCONDITIONAL support - and the most important part of that is being willing to listen and ACT when they come looking for help. Things like the LIA “Refuge” program cannot long survive in a society that is marked by the constant and tireless efforts of good and decent people to protect the weak from harm.

Make THAT your goal.


4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Avyrex // Jun 10, 2005 at 2:46 am

    Reading this makes me sick. Being a devout Christian myself, I can say, with absolute certainty, that this place is not trying to spread good Christian values, as they seem to want you to believe.
    Whether the kid’s gay or not, it’s no man’s place to judge him, much less have him brainwashed by people who claim to know God, but have merel twisted his Word.

    It really sickens me to see some of the things done in God’s name…people like this give Christianity a bad name.

  • 2 Matthew // Jun 11, 2005 at 10:14 pm

    It’s not like they are brainwashing. They are going to try and help him out of it, talk to him about it, and try and help him in any way. He may not want to be gay. His family may be religious, and religious people often believe that homosexuality is wrong, as many thinking taking drugs are wrong. They both have centers to help you. Sure many of you may not be religious, and may feel its a brainwashing clinic, but they don’t go and give him fire and brimstone. It’s amazing how everyone thinks him and his family trying to help him is so damn wrong.

  • 3 Scott // Jun 11, 2005 at 11:48 pm

    Hi Matthew! Just letting you know you’re a goddam idiot =) Kids dont decide to be gay. They dont suddenly get the urge and then want to change, understand? This kid needs to be left alone to try and work his life and himself out in his own time and his own way. What gives these self-rightous pricks the goddam right to interfere with HIS life? Fuck them. Anyone that thinks differnetly is an idiot, Ok? Have a great day!

  • 4 funtax // Jun 12, 2005 at 9:46 am

    Matthew -

    Have you actually read ANY of this kid’s posts? He doesn’t “want” to be gay. He IS gay. And he SURE AS HELL doesn’t want people trying to force him into “not being gay anymore.”

    You’re entitled to your opinion, but in this case your opinion is informed by little more than unbelievable ignorance.

    Go back, read this kid’s journal entries and try to imagine what it’s like to be rejected by your family and sent off for “reprogamming” in what amounts to a prison camp. These people aren’t “helping” him in any way, shape or form.

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