No one wants Pizzagate to be true. (Brunette here.) When something’s “too good to be true,” of course, it usually is . . . but what about something that seems too evil — too horrific, disturbing — to be true?
Skepticism is natural, just be wary of the one-sided variety — be as skeptical of the skeptics who want to attribute all survivors’ claims to false memory syndrome (or see the introduction here) — it appears that false accusations are far less common than is widely believed. For those who dismiss it out of hand as “fake news,” do us both a favor and stop reading now. In the unlikely event that you’ve not heard of Pizzagate (it’s old news by now), or if you’re unfamiliar with the scandal, here’s a good place to start:
DC Pizzagate, A Primer (updated periodically)
Also, I highly recommend this short article by Nick Bryant: “Sexual Abuse’s Second Shame” as a nutshell version of everything I’ve learned this past month or so. (I expect to use a quote from it further down.)
Or, if you’re into DIY digging, try Voat.co Pizzagate thread or Steemit’s Pizzagate thread. Reddit’s Pizzagate community has been famously banned, which is a great shame as it had hosted much useful research.
Posts, articles and videos relating to Pizzagate have a disconcerting way of disappearing quickly (here’s a timeline courtesy of Voat), so I apologize in advance for any bad links — since I started work on this post, a number of pages I’d bookmarked have been censored or removed, which has made for slow going. Warning, much of this material requires a strong stomach — it’s upsetting and often truly disgusting, not to mention infuriating.
A personal story (feel free to skip these four paragraphs to get back to Pizzagate) . . .
An aunt (now deceased, sadly) once told me, “You were a very lucky little girl.” We’d held a family gathering — at her request — to talk about childhood memories of her mother (my father’s mother and my grandmother); a discussion she felt it necessary to have. Memories of childhood before the age of six or so are few for me; I told her of a memory which I doubted was true but also felt it was too bizarre to have imagined. A memory (more physical than mental, if that makes sense) of being left in a corrugated metal trash bin perhaps for several hours. It was dank and dirty, and amplified sound to an extent that was unpleasant if not painful. I was into my mid-20s when I abruptly re-lived that memory (again, it was a physical memory; I’m not sure how else to describe it) and during a very difficult time in my life — mired in a horrible relationship, and undergoing a sort of spiritual crisis — it re-emerged as a sort of ‘flashback’ that lasted over a week, during which I was extremely sensitive to sound and hyper-emotional.
My aunt, far from accusing me of lying or fabricating stories, not only believed me but seemed to think I could have died. And that’s just one incident — there are other hazy recollections — but I hope it serves as an example of a weird childhood memory. My mother was in no way complicit in such abuse, perhaps aside from (understandably, maybe necessarily) trusting us kids to a troubled grandmother’s care. I was the oldest kid, and too young to recall much detail, but my mother gradually realized she couldn’t trust grandma’s judgment as a babysitter and cut ties with her as best she could. A younger sister recently reminisced over dinner that Mom one day had come home to find us girls playing with saws, hammers and nails, etc. — things most adults would want kept OUT of the hands of small children. I guess that was the last straw for Mom (thankfully so.)
Lucky girl I was indeed, to have survived and to have been believed when my aunt asked us what memories we could share. (Not something I’d ever really talked about before or since, BTW. I certainly never expected to blog about it.) My aunt shared that her mother had been involved in Eastern Star, and her older brother (who I only recall meeting once) was also a Mason — for whatever that’s worth.
So it galls me to hear survivors of ritual abuse casually dismissed as liars; if they’re brave enough to talk (for many, it’s easier not to) and if they’re telling the truth (as most will be — others, like me, may have simply been too young to understand what was going on, much less describe it). I tried psychotherapy for six months or so, but finally decided it was doing more harm than good. Mostly I’ve decided to let sleeping ghosts lie, for my own sanity.
Back to Pizzagate: Child abuse is certainly very real. Ritual abuse (whether Satanic or otherwise) is very real. Cultural denial is also (unfortunately) very real:
“The survivor who is able to overcome the denial of family, internal denial, and programmed denial, will still be met by blank looks, or worse, those who turn their backs on them, and say, “I don’t want to hear about this, “ or “I can’t hear about this.” Pastors will say this, social workers, CPS workers, and those whose comfort zone is crossed with the thought that ritual abuse really occurs. Those who tell the survivor, “I believe you”, at times may seem far and few between, and I applaud their willingness to look at realities which often make us feel uncomfortable. No one WANTS to think that human beings can do this to one another, or that such horrific abuse is possible.”
I worry that “Pizzagate” might trivialize a serious and endemic problem . . . reducing it to the level of a hashtag, an easily dismissed (“Oh, that’s been DEBUNKED by Snopes!”, or “That’s SO 2016”) rumor, especially if it focuses on sensationalized distractions without solid evidence instead of the truly horrifying realities of survivors and victims (and their families.)
On the one hand, yes, unfortunately there may be innocent people inadvertently caught up in the scandal — that concerns me. It’s not a crime to have dubious taste in art or music, or funky pizza shop decor, or practice occult-ish performance art. Ghastly as some of the pictures and videos that have surfaced may seem, they’re largely circumstantial evidence at best. On the other hand, child sexual abuse and ritualistic child abuse are real concerns, and survivors are often unable or reluctant to talk: Out of fear for their families, their own lives and safety, careers and reputations. A common method of silencing survivors is to brand them liars, and their memories false. Besides, young children are easily intimidated; they’re taught to obey adults, and naturally tend to do so . . . at least until the early teens, they’re easy prey.
There is PLENTY of evidence of organized child trafficking rings, and sadly it seems like they’re often protected from scrutiny by the very agencies that should be prosecuting those rings. A pattern quickly emerges from researching the subject that suggests higher level pedophile rings and child/human trafficking rings tend to involve ‘pillars of the community’; people who are well-to-do, well respected, professionals . . . often in fields such as education or medicine, politics or clergy; ordinary seeming individuals likely to be entrusted with children or their care and well being.
From “Sexual Abuse’s Second Shame” by Nick Bryant: (Again, I highly recommend reading the entire article — it’s short.)
“The reality is that many perpetrators are not shady men in dirty, threadbare trench coats living in seedy hotels, but are, in fact, pillars of our community. Until our society addresses these facts and its institutions are willing to face embarrassment, instead of heaping more abuse upon victims, our national shame of rampant child abuse and its cover-up are unlikely to end.”
* Nick Bryant is coauthor of ‘Americas Children: Triumph of Tragedy’ and ‘The Franklin Scandal: A Story of Powerbrokers, Child Abuse, and Betrayal.’
“A grotesque parody of journalism” — Fake news is nothing new. Remember the McMartin preschool case in the 1980s? I do; although until recently hadn’t read much about it. Looks like a textbook case of protecting the perpetrators, and blaming the victims. Turns out, apparently, that tunnels were eventually found — just as the kids claimed. Not that you’d likely have heard that from mainstream news sources, all seemingly intent on silencing the victims and protecting the perpetrators.
“A bizarre and industrious dedication to deception” — More on the McMartin tunnels. The author concludes, hauntingly:
“The continuing obscurity of this potentially provocative archaeological discovery should give the lie to another reassurance: if things like this went on it would be impossible to hide the evidence. It is not so much that the evidence is difficult to hide as that we as a just and fair society are incapable of seeing it.
Judy Johnson saw blood on her infant’s diaper and has paid a terrible price for trying to find how it got there. Other McMartin parents, now distilled down to the essence of one, tried to find evidence for their children’s complaints, only to be reviled as a malicious threat to world serenity. Jackie McGauley has a hard-won documentation of physical evidence to share. Who will buy it?”
Then there’s the Franklin Case: Here’s an in depth article by Nick Bryant. And here’s Conspiracy of Silence, an hour long documentary on the scandal — it’s rough, the documentary (though filmed for broadcast) was never aired and I gather it only exists in rough form.
Is it an accident that this “fake news” panic narrative has suddenly ridden in on the coattails of Pizzagate? I don’t think so. Is it happenstance that sites like Twitter, Youtube and Reddit are banning and censoring investigators posting their findings in various forms? (Let’s hope WordPress isn’t next.)
The always thoughtful Brandon Smith tackles the Pizzagate controversy here: I recommend the article, and also second his recommendation of David Seaman’s Youtube channel.
However, Brandon notes:
“I do recommend everyone at least look at the evidence he and others present. I went into the issue rather skeptical, but was surprised by the sheer amount of weirdness and evidence regarding Comet Pizza. There is a problem with Pizzagate that is difficult to overcome, however; namely the fact that to my knowledge no victims have come forward. This is not to say there has been no crime, but anyone hoping to convince the general public of wrong-doing in this kind of scenario is going to have a very hard time without a victim to reference.”
My concern here is that the surfacing of victims is surely inconvenient (to put it mildly) to these predators, the more so as public attention focuses on their shadowy activities and disbelief turns to outrage. I sadly suspect, therefore, there may be fewer future survivors. As someone pointed out in one of the many forums (quite probably the defunct Reddit community, sorry no link to source), these child victims have multiple potential uses: sexual slavery, labor and child porn; snuff films; and finally, organ harvesting (and/or cannibalism). Dreadful as that is to think about, it’s a valid point. One that should give us pause when considering the absence of victims.
All the more reason to prevent children from becoming victims in the first place!
Lastly, a few more links I’d meant to work in — it feels like this post is quite long enough already. I haven’t even mentioned Jimmy Savile (etc.), the Dutroux affair, or other more recent scandals. Enough’s enough, for now. 🙁
The Pedophocracy by David McGowan (long, and quite graphic text — truly disturbing, starts off with Dutroux)
Boys for Sale, 1981 Forgotten Documentary (video, 90 min.)
Another one bites the dust: I was hoping to link to this video, and it’s gone — hadn’t taken time to watch the whole thing yet myself . . . sigh.
*Please note that quoting a source, or linking to it, does not mean I agree with everything there — just that I thought it worth sharing. But you knew that, right?
Next time I hope to be able to do a cheerier post, maybe even in time for Christmas. 😉