Sunday, December 23, 2018

The Freedom to Pursue Justice

The Freedom to Pursue Justice
By Angela Smith, HEAL National Coordinator/Co-Founder

As a victim of child abuse, sodomy, sexual abuse, and institutionalized abuse, I have pursued justice.  When sodomized at age 6, the crime was reported.  The perpetrator was 17 and his file was sealed.  That perpetrator went on to become a police officer in Washington State.  As a teen, I reported abuse to my school and they notified social services who sent a social worker to my home.  The social worker advised that she could place me in foster care.  I knew a girl in foster care at my school who told me she had been sexually abused at most of her placements, including her current placement.  So, I felt foster care wasn't the best option.  I didn't think to report it to the police as the authority figures in my life thought social services was the right agency to contact.  But, I had the right to do so.  To escape the abuse at home I attempted suicide and voluntarily received brief inpatient care at a psychiatric hospital.  They knew I was being abused and did not advise I call the police to report the crimes nor did they report it as mandated reporters.  Instead, they suggested I go to a boarding school in Utah where I was abused and had no way to contact authorities at that point as my communications were restricted and monitored.  But, I was able to write home and extended family who rescued me from Utah after a few months.

Being relieved to be free from Provo Canyon School and suffering compounded trauma from that experience, my abusers at home and the professionals they chose recommended I not pursue legal action for my own well-being because testifying may trigger my trauma.  Being a teen, I didn't feel I had the support needed to pursue justice further.  But, the reality is that the individuals who suggested I not pursue justice were most likely in the eyes of the law to be co-conspirators or co-defendants to cover up child abuse, sexual abuse, and false imprisonment/kidnapping by fraud.  The hospital I was at has changed ownership along with the program in Utah, both are now owned by the same parent company which has been in trouble with the Department of Justice for fraud.[1][2]  So, maybe we need a stiffer penalty than fines for fraud.  That would be worthwhile legislation.

The issue we as victims of childhood abuses have is that sometimes trauma makes us overlook the obvious or suggestions that we write congress rather than pursue available remedies at law seem like a good idea.  If something is already a crime or even tort, then, remedies exist such as filing criminal complaints in the proper jurisdiction and regarding specific crime(s), filing consumer complaints with your home state's attorney general (which you can do at http://www.heal-online.org/report.htm by clicking on appropriate link on that page), and filing a civil suit before any statute of limitations has expired on your cause(s) of action.  Failing to do this in a timely fashion is a forfeiture of your right to justice in the eyes of the law and reasonably so in many cases.  So, while trauma is very upsetting and being a victim of crime is very traumatizing, the remedies remain filing criminal complaints, consumer complaints, and/or filing a lawsuit within the statute of limitations.  Regulation doesn't work and just allows for pretense and cover up of crime in most cases.  So, everyone should encourage victims of crime, regardless of age or infirmity, to report crime to the authorities as soon as humanly possible.  And, if you choose not to do so for any reason, the public is likely to ask why you didn't and whether you knew that was an option leading to some embarrassment and/or defensive response about your personal circumstances and why it didn't happen in your case.  But, that's not a basis for a movement.  This is why HEAL will likely be shifting our priorities in 2019 and ask individual survivors to support each other who need emotional support but are not interested in pursuing justice or can no longer do so as a result of the statute of limitations on their cause(s) of action.


Thursday, December 20, 2018

The Role of Men as Providers and the Exploitation of Tradition by Modern Women

The Role of Men as Providers and the Exploitation of Tradition by Modern Women
by Angela Smith, HEAL National Coordinator/Co-Founder

Regardless of historical gender roles and all the arguable inequities and legalized oppression of women, including pay gaps for equal work, we as women should not degrade ourselves by engaging in passive prostitution by using sex as a means to additional income or gratuities (i.e. gifts).  And, we do ourselves a disservice by engaging in such conduct, manipulating men out of vindictiveness while rationalizing it as a way to force equality in areas of finance, while failing to take responsibility for our own finances or recognizing that when you love someone you don't manipulate them.

For the sake of gender equality and to avoid anyone being unnecessarily hurt by unmet expectations, it remains the best idea to go Dutch/split expenses equally or proportionally rather than engage in passive prostitution by demanding or expecting more financial or gratuitous rewards than one offers in exchange.  Those who place importance or particular value on their own body over the body of those they may date or love, are engaging in self-objectification and if in exchange for financial or gratuitous rewards, suggests consciously, or even subconsciously, that you see yourself as a prostitute.  If you do not wish for others to see you as a prostitute, consciously choosing not to engage in such conduct would aid in correcting that impression.

As a woman who doesn't engage in that conduct and enjoys sex, I find that I don't expect payment or gratuities from a man when I love him and want to be with him because I love him so much.  So, it seems many women might use the idea of love and proving love to withhold sex when payment or gratuities are not happening at the preferred frequency for passive prostitutes.  And, I find the conduct degrading to women and causing a setback in women's true liberation. 

Men see it as being hypocritical.  You act like a woman who wants a provider and understands traditionally that entails you provide too in your own way.  If you are in love, then everyone should be happy making each other happy in all ways to the best of your ability.  And, if you love someone beyond reason, then you might be happy just making the one you love happy.  But, if you want independence and don't need a provider, then you should cover your own expenses at least proportionally.  If not, then you are being a hypocrite.  Because, you either like patriarchy or when men are the providers and women don't have to contribute financially or you want gender equality and understand that contributing proportionally to all expenses is reasonable given the goal of gender equality.

It remains unfair to blame an entire gender for historical inequities at law given we now have resources and access to remedy any such inequities through diligent advocacy where the law needs amending.  Taking your frustrations out on a man you love or should love by demanding payment or gratuities for your company, is passive prostitution.  And, if you don't want men to see women as prostitutes, you'll stop doing this immediately out of respect for all womankind, if not your own self-respect.

In addition, if you support modern slavery or don't bother to help the poor in any material sense, you ought not suggest you deserve better when you clearly don't effectively act to demand or address the oppression of others worse off than you.  So, it would seem this form of passive prostitution may involve some narcissism in thinking only of what you want rather than what is best for everyone involved or how your own actions in life don't reflect your supposed commitment to equality or economic survival.

Excited about your designer clothes made by enslaved people around the globe?  Did your husband or boyfriend buy it for you?  Was it a reward for a "nice evening" of your company?  Where's his reward.  His company should be as enjoyable to you as your company is to him or it likely isn't anything close to love.  So, when promoting gender equality we must consider whether our own individual commitment is leading by example and establishes we are equal and that love is about love, not financial or gratuitous rewards from either side.

Compromise is great.  But, it should be done reasonably and with everyone being honest with themselves and each other regarding expectations.  Women are often dishonest or fail to disclose we want a commitment and expect one prior to engaging in intercourse.  We rationalize that men should just know that's the expectation.  But, that's unreasonable and lends itself to delusion, denial, and heartache.  Women must be assertive and state our intentions upfront as well as our expectations.  If we rationalize or concede that doing so might hinder the potential relationship, we are starting the relationship without the foundation of trust established by being honest and direct which dooms any relationship to misery or utter destruction.

Men expect everyone knows that until you know each other well you are not in love and any sex is based on infatuation or a biological drive unless you know each other well enough to say you truly love each other and feel the love while knowing reasonably it is mutually shared.  But, the men's biological drive coupled with women's proclivities to engage in intellectual and emotional dishonesty for financial or gratuitous rewards in exchange when love is uncertain, results in serious disharmony.  So, to avoid that, being honest helps even though most appear to be conditioned to do it the vicious way rather than the virtuous way which is why progress on women's liberation hasn't progressed further.

So, men can help by demanding that expenses be split at least proportionally until both are prepared for a commitment and even then responsibilities must be split equally regardless of proportional sharing of expenses dependent on income.  And, women can help by demanding that too.  If you are attracted, feel love (even with a good friend), and want to have sex, it should be alright as long as money isn't involved.  But, if you lack any of that criteria and expect compensation of any kind, you are a passive prostitute and not acting in a manner respectable or that will result in lasting joy.  And, men will treat you like one too even if initially everyone is so infatuated and conditioned to it they don't realize until later that it is passive prostitution and the relationship was doomed because it was founded on falsehood.

We all have to be responsible, reasonable, and as virtuous as possible which includes being honest.  Failing to do so results in a lot of heartache and disharmony.  We can do better and men and women should commit to it.  And, "honesty is the best policy" has been a well known phrase for quite some time and choosing to ignore the suggestion while engaging in vice is why you get so upset if you ignore it.  See, sometimes when we ignore virtue it is at our own peril even if we engage in self-righteousness (another vice) regarding the issue of women's liberation in light of historical inequities and oppression.  We can't reasonably demand more of others than we are willing to give ourselves, even proportionally to the best of our ability.  Otherwise, it is hypocrisy and leads to unhappiness when the infatuation wears thin and the annoying stuff coupled with feeling used or disillusioned comes into play.  Being reasonable and responsible ourselves, we can help prevent our future suffering as long as we remain honest and reasonable enough to recognize when someone else isn't being honest.  In such an event, we must remain reasonable and understand that if someone isn't honest, it's best not to be in a relationship with them.  And, if everyone's honest, a great foundation of trust for friendship and much more. 

It's up to you and your ability to reason, discern fact from fiction, and be honest.  Otherwise, no one cares about your relationship woes and if you engage in passive prostitution, don't expect any sympathy from those you adversely effect that experience the continued objectification as a result of your refusal to be reasonable and responsible.  If you do expect it, you are a narcissist and not worthy of the time or consideration required for sympathy.  But, extremely virtuous people may advise the same as this article if they feel particularly inclined to be generous enough to listen.  And, if you don't, you likely want to find yet another person to talk to about it next time as you've been given quite a few examples for how to be happier through honesty and decided you'd keep trying vice instead.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Justifying Government Authority

Justifying Government Authority
by Angela Smith, HEAL National Coordinator/Co-Founder

In order to promote and protect the liberty interests of all US citizens, regardless of age, gender, orientation, heritage, faith, or disability, we must respect each other's liberty on the same grounds.  This includes the liberty interests of vulnerable populations such as children, the elderly, and the disabled.

False imprisonment and kidnapping are federal offenses and prosecutable as such if the crime crosses state lines involving commerce.  Commerce involves the sale of goods or services.  Services include boarding schools, treatment centers, and all forms of segregated congregate care.  Kidnapping can be committed by force or fraud.  False advertising in sales materials may be enough to prove fraud.  Parents can be charged as co-conspirators and may be able to mitigate charges by claiming ignorance. 

Youth who are kidnapped and falsely imprisoned in such a fashion often distrust the government as believing this wouldn't be happening if it were illegal.  But, whether the victims of crime or perpetrators of crime know it is a crime, doesn't change the fact that it is a crime.  And, when victims of crime don't get justice, often they become activists and sometimes turn to crime themselves seeing that leadership involves criminal activity at "leadership academies".

So, I believe the most reasonable thing to do is have law enforcement raid every single youth facility that accepts youth, without a court order via due process, where the youth are held against their will to let youth know that heroes exist and the law is on their side.  Otherwise, I'm the voice of reason in the teen liberty movement and sometimes I hit a rough patch.  I always respect the law and expect it to be enforced particularly when individual liberty interests and national security are involved.

See, anyone raised believing people in authority get away with crime or don't have to obey the same rules or laws, may follow the example set by those in authority which is why we need to be virtuous and respect each other's liberty interests to avoid being hypocrites and criminals or inspiring others to become such.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Solution-Based Activism

Solution-Based Activism
by Angela Smith, HEAL National Coordinator/Co-Founder

I've been an activist arguably as long as I've lived and been aware of the need to exercise virtue over vice.  I co-founded HEAL in 2002 at the University of Washington.  Through my years as an activist and advocate to stop institutionalized abuse, I've learned that to be effective a movement must be solution-based.  Raising awareness about atrocities is not enough and does not result in solving problems.  We must, therefore, as activists, be willing to provide a solution or recommend a feasible and reasonable one based on empirical data with virtuous change to vicious circumstances being our end regardless of cause or issue.  In the United States, we can present solutions through private enterprise or public policy reform suggestions depending on best course for particular issue or cause. 

With the #MeToo movement, reporting crimes of harassment, rape, assault, battery, or the like is the number one and primary legal remedy available for justice.  This must be done in a timely manner so prosecution remains likely to succeed.  In the event there is not enough evidence for a conviction meeting the beyond a reasonable doubt standard, then victims in such a situation may wish to join a support group or file a civil suit if there is enough evidence that it meets the civil standard of being a preponderance of evidence.  If there is not enough evidence to meet either the civil or criminal standard, one who makes such allegations against an individual may find themselves legally liable if unable to support their public statements to the satisfaction of the courts.

Depending on jurisdiction, and in New York specifically, you can press criminal charges under various statutes for the following: any unwanted forcible touching for personal gratification or to degrade or abuse the victim regardless of whether over or under clothes (TSA is guilty), any other unwanted physical contact such as pushing or hitting, physically threatening or menacing without making contact but placing one in fear of such and must involve threatening body language and be more than verbal, and unlawful imprisonment even if only briefly prevented from freedom of movement (as in blocking a door and not letting one leave).  So, if you've been a victim of such activity in the workplace or elsewhere, please report it to law enforcement immediately and press charges.  Doing so in a timely fashion is your best chance at justice. 

Now, the issue may be with getting more funding for particular law enforcement units so they can better investigate and more quickly solve crime.  You'll want to check your state's current funding of law enforcement, particularly special victims' units or the like and request more funding and personnel for that unit in the event there is a backlog of cases or the department is overwhelmed and under-funded.  In Orange County, California the department you would want to see expanded and funded more is Special Victims Detail.  Right now, there are eleven total officers in that department with a known 5,000 sex offenders living in the county.  So, it would seem demanding more funding and officers to handle the caseload would be the best solution coupled with timely reporting of such crimes regardless of where the crime may have occurred or the parties involved.

This is just one example of how to focus on solutions in activism and I hope the #MeToo movement and all victims of crime report it in time for justice to be feasible.


Sources:


Thursday, December 6, 2018

Sadism in Modern Human Development and Social Organization


Sadism in Modern Human Development and Social Organization
by Angela Smith, HEAL National Coordinator/Co-Founder

Do you wish for a world without freedom, reason, and mutual respect for all humankind?  Do you demand freedom, reason, and respect from others?  If you answered "yes" to both questions, then there is a flaw in your reasoning and you need to work on that to avoid hypocrisy and misunderstanding.

People tend to follow examples set for them by their primary caregivers in childhood and authority figures in adulthood.  So, regardless of whether your position in all relationships, business or personal, is "Do as I say, not as I do", your own actions or "doing" are naturally to be adopted by those that see you as an authority on how to live or achieve leadership positions.  If your actions should not be adopted by everyone else, you do not belong in a leadership position.  If your actions should be adopted by everyone else, then, absolutely others may benefit from the example you've set.  And, a job worth doing is worth doing well, including leading by example. 

Now, the issue we are facing in the 21st century boils down to this, current trends in human development and social organization are towards imposing ignorance while focusing on emotional stimuli to manipulate and control the majority while the law remains steadfastly in position to protect freedom by requiring reasonable and well-reasoned decisions that exhibit mutual respect for fellow citizens.  Our education and employment training methodologies result in fear of reason, rejection or fear of freedom (i.e. when I suggest an improvement I am dismissed or scolded), and loss of respect for self and others over time with fear being the conditioned response to authority.  This leads to individuals distrusting authority or government resulting in further exploitation and abuse where the law would intervene if victims were not conditioned to fear rather than trust the government.

Since manipulative and aversive behavioral controls are currently being widely used in public and private education settings, the youth so subjected are being conditioned to be subservient and obedient to handlers or perceived authority figures.  This puts them at risk of exploitation, including sexual abuses that go unreported out of fear.  They are also discouraged from reasoning as such may lead to questioning authority.  So, by promoting such conditioning we are as a result ending up with individuals afraid to think for themselves out of fear of punishment while the law demands they take full responsibility and treats their actions as autonomous.  It would seem that on its face all of this is inherently unjust and unfair and that the spirit of the law bends towards freedom which is why our education, human development, and social organization should promote and encourage that, not set everyone up for failure.  And then, those claiming leadership, engaging in intellectual dishonesty, show examples of those who somehow manage to overcome such horrifying conditions to claim that it isn't the system, it is the exceptionalism of the individual. 

Granted, everyone has different talents, skills, and flaws.  And, we'd all like to be accepted based on our individual abilities and contributions to society as they may be.  We might achieve a utopia of sorts if we could embrace universal ethical standards while refraining from intellectual dishonesty.  But, such is arguably unrealistic.  However, it is possible and my PapaSam would say, "If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything." 

It seems to me that for the sake of, what I believe are American values, we should promote justice and liberty for all.  And, that such requires we not have education or training systems that condition our fellow citizens to respond solely to emotional stimuli, shut down or fear reason, and then blame them for not being reasonable so we can send them to prison where slavery is still legal under the constitution. 

Can we reform the schools and employee training systems so that we encourage reason and the development of such over basic animal-training methods of reward and punishment depending on whether someone pleases the "trainer"/"authority figure"?  If not, that's the problem most adversely affecting the quality of life and upward mobility for the majority of Americans right now and until it is solved, everything will continue to suck.

Please see the free e-books "It's All The Rage" (Particularly chapter 2, please see page 9 regarding what is done with exceptionally intelligent children) and "Activism 101: How to Succeed In Peaceful Revolution" available via hyperlink pdf at http://www.beyondbusiness.net.  And, you may also find the Congressional Hearing report of interest available here: http://www.healreport.tv/1974congressbehaviormod.pdf
 
This is the bottom line and why everyone is so frustrated with each other and overly emotional about it instead of reasoning things out and actually solving problems.  When you try to stop people from questioning your authority and beat them, drug them, and demand obedience while claiming they are fully responsible for everything they do and should reasonably know better, you are the problem.  Pick a lane.  Lead by example. And, if people act erratic or unstable as a result of living under such conditions, don't create an entire new field to label and control them under the guise of healthcare, address the root cause which is poor social organization and failed human development strategies that have promoted totalitarian authoritarianism in a free country.  Fight for freedom!  HEAL's fighting for freedom and we're with you if you are too!

Monday, December 3, 2018

Debate and Dialogue

Debate and Dialogue
by Angela Smith, HEAL National Coordinator/Co-Founder

For the purposes of helping to further the cause of reasonable discussion on controversial issues, this particular article will be looking at abortion and climate change.  With abortion, I'll be revisiting and adding commentary regarding the Abortion Debate between Kelsey Hazzard and Peggy Loonan hosted by The HEAL Report and reviewed in an earlier post found here: http://heal-online.blogspot.com/2015/06/the-abortion-debate.html.  Regarding climate change, I'll be providing information on arguably deceptive marketing practices regarding the environmental benefits of available fuels for automobiles.  It is my sincere hope that this commentary aids all reasonable people in having a thoughtful and productive discussion regarding how to resolve some of the issues raised when meeting with apparent adversaries or zealots.

In the Hazzard v. Loonan debate, I found both made some compelling arguments for each side of the abortion issue.  However, I also found evidence of ignorance and/or intellectual dishonesty in regards to certain points made by both sides.  I will leave it up to you to decide whether to give the benefit of the doubt and believe the issue was more with ignorance than intellectual dishonesty on the part of the debate participants.

Hazzard argued during the debate that animal welfare laws are stronger than the laws protecting the unborn.  The issue here is that it is legal to kill animals for food, sport, and because they've become a nuisance or inconvenient in the United States.  Even in the case of a healthy family pet, the owner can have the pet euthanized.  And, that's a born animal.  See: http://veterinarynews.dvm360.com/refusing-euthanize-healthy-pet  Even if a vet refuses, the article shows that an owner can still legally take the pet to another vet to have their healthy but no longer convenient pet euthanized.  In addition, another example is that dogs can be forcibly given abortions at the mercy of their owner's whims.  See: https://breedingbusiness.com/dog-abortion/  So, both unborn and born animals are not better protected than unborn and born humans in the United States.

A question I would ask Pro Lifers is: Given the fact that natural spontaneous miscarriages occur and Vanishing Twin Syndrome exists, both which show nature sometimes aborts whether the mother wants it or not, why is it okay or accepted if unplanned and not okay if intentionally scheduled?  (For information on Vanishing Twin Syndrome, see: http://americanpregnancy.org/multiples/vanishing-twin-syndrome/)

Loonan argued during the debate that fetal pain could not be proven and therefore was not something she considers when discussing abortion.  She mentioned that they couldn't be asked if they feel pain so there is no way to know if they do without that confirmation.  There were a few issues with this and one is that there are mute people, such as Helen Keller historically, that I believe all would agree was able to feel pain.  So, being unable to verbalize a confirmation to such a question is not indicative or conclusive regarding whether pain is possible or actual.  In addition, nonhuman animals cannot verbally be asked if they feel pain and respond, but, everyone would likely agree animals are capable of feeling pain even if unable to verbalize it.  Regardless, the science shows that at 26 weeks a fetus can feel everything and they begin feeling at 23-25 weeks.  So, I'm going with the scientific studies on this one and therefore fully support a ban on abortion after 24 weeks.  I'd prefer it to be at 20-22 weeks just to be sure the fetus felt no pain as a result of the procedure, but, I think the 24 week ban is a compromise some seem to feel necessary.  Source on Fetal Pain Studies: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1440624/

A question I would ask a Pro Choicer is: Would you support a ban, similar to the ban in the Netherlands, on abortions after 24 weeks gestation, knowing fetuses can feel pain as early as 23 weeks, sometimes sooner, but fully feel everything by 26 weeks gestation?  (See original blog post linked in first paragraph above for source on Netherlands.)

I hope everyone enjoys those conversations.  Now, the truth is that we have three options to fuel our motor vehicles right now.  Those options are coal, fracked gas, and gasoline.  The electric car is powered by coal.  Hydrogen Fuel Cells are made with natural gas from fracking.  Gasoline is from traditional oil drilling and refining.  Coal is by far the dirtiest of the three options according to Obama's EPA.  So, the electric car appears to be twice as bad for the environment as a traditional gas-powered car based on Co2 emissions of power source.  Hydrogen Fuel Cells are made from natural gas and emit slightly less Co2 emissions in use than traditional gas when used.  However, it becomes an issue on whether traditional drilling and gas is better or worse for the environment than fracked natural gas.  Do you know?  If not, maybe find a real solution to fueling cars and electricity rather than introducing alternatives while hyping claims that they are far more environmentally friendly than competitors.  The electric car powered by coal, appears to be the most misleading but was sweet to think people just don't know where the electricity comes from even after the hit show "The Office".

Sources for Climate Change and Automobiles:





Hoping this is helpful to everyone in pursuing more thoughtful dialogue and more honest debate.