I saw Frontlinelast night on PBS: Weinstein, the abuser; Weinstein, the rapist; Weinstein, the terrorist; Weinstein, the monster.
I wondered, what made him a monster? Was he born that way, predatory I mean, or was he made that way or was it a bit of both. And how did he run wild for so long?
Could it be that what made Weinstein the monster is what made Trump the monster, Hitler the monster, Stalin the monster? Is there a place in us where the shame, helplessness and rage that swamps us when we are held down and humiliated, ridiculed and invalidated, when we are touched and violated in places of deep silence behind closed doors, where we must hold forever the dark evil secrets perpetrated by those in power who should have protected us but instead tried to murder our souls…is there a place in us then that drowns in blackness and violence?
In the night Weinstein the monster appeared in my dreams, made me rise out of bed filled with panic, anxiety and rage. “What secrets do I still hold?” I thought. “What shame do I still protect?”
How is it that decades later I am I still terrified of dead men? How is it that I still avoid what happened so long ago for fear maybe that I will break my own unspoken non-disclosure agreement and call down the retribution of the angry Mormon God of my childhood?
What is this feeling that I might not contain the lava inside and be condemned to a black site for speaking out?
Why don’t we notice that the children killing children in schools with weapons found in wars must have been tortured by someone who themselves were tortured?
It makes no sense to me, this idea that somehow it’s an “isolated event” or a lone outsider who happened to be mentally ill. How many lone outsiders does it take to create thousands of brown shirted Nazi’s who legalize the throwing of millions of their countryman into gas ovens? When do we get that it’s the culture that is torturing people into becoming monsters and that the culture is us? I mean, how do people literally acquire the rage necessary get a weapon and plan the murders of the child they once were? Who murdered them first? Who is responsible for creating the monster? God? The Devil? Or you and me.
Maybe the ranks of the NRA are filled with terrified, raging, disempowered, and shamed people who want nothing more than to turn the tables and do payback on the ones that stuck a barrel in their mouths when they were too young to fight back. And maybe a lot of our churches and new age cults are like that too. I mean, we say we are Christians who believe in Christ but it looks to me like we are pretty damned mad about it. How come we Christians have so many guns and weapons instead of love and cooperation and how come so many of us have been alter boys for pedophile priests or concubines for saintly gurus who rationalize their lust for our bodies in the name of God?
My first guru was my father and I can tell you, he was furious! My father’s guru was my grandfather who used a stick to beat sense into my father in the woodshed. My grandfather’s guru was his father, my great grandfather, who was a pillar of the Mormon Church and whose guru was Joseph Smith the latter day saint. Smith believed he was the supreme alpha wolf who had the divine right to have carnal relations with any woman he wanted including those of his closest friends! Or else! He was like Weinstein the monster.
So how far back to we have to go until we get to some core insult, some horrifying abuse that has been passed along the generations like a baton in a relay race before we realize that the buck stops here?
This is hard to write about. I panic that I won’t say it right or that I’ll say it at all or that it will be messy and inarticulate or stupid or that I won’t have the necessary evidence, you know, like semen stains or DNA, or witnesses to prove what the deniers will say are false allegations, or that I will betray my father and reveal my mother who sat quivering in helpless silence while her children were being tortured.
It’s not just that there is a single Weinstein the monster, or a solitary Spacey the monster or an individual Cosby the monster, or that rape is just solely a physical fact. It’s that there is rape of the soul as well that can damage millions and in that there is a whole culture of archetypal monsters made of faces that look like presidents, congressmen, bankers, generals, CEO’s and countless other people the world over all justifying the whole and heartless institutional machine that keeps abusing and shaming and raping and blaming and murdering and imprisoning and torturing and forcing everyone everywhere into the code of Omerta or else they get the kiss of death and solitary lockdown in Rikers, electrodes on your genitals, Abu Graib in America, water board in Guantanamo or even Texas, if ever we dare speak out.
So we take sleep pills and Klonopin and Zanex and Vallium, Medical Marijuana and Jack Daniels, cigarettes and sex, to keep us from feeling the magma in our hearts that is now bulging and rising up like one of those overnight volcanoes in Mexico,
The red-hot molten truth wants a witness. It wants me.