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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 04:01PM

Life in prison was the sentence just handed down to the murderer of 8 men in Toronto, Canada. He decapitated and dismembered his victims. At least he pleaded guilty, saving the families a painful trial, although still during the sentencing hearing they heard the gruesome evidence of how their loved ones died.

Even for such heinous and numerous crimes he received essentially one life sentence (eight concurrent, rather than consecutive, life sentences). A life sentence in Canada is 25 years before application for parole (although he is unlikely to get it even then). It feels to family members that concurrent sentences would be more just for those they have lost and who suffered so much and ultimately lost their lives and some have expressed dismay and anger.

A pastor who is involved in a vigil tonight for the victims said "It's OK to be angry in response to injustice" - in this case the injustice of the men's fate at the mass murderer's hands as well as the opinion of some family members that the sentence is too lenient, therefore unjust.

It's refreshing to me to hear a religious leader acknowledge that anger can be righteous, an understandable reaction to horror. The usual message I've heard through the years is that it's sinful to feel angry, never mind express it. And doubly so if it's an emotion felt on behalf of oneself. In response, many people squelch down natural reactions of anger, frustration, impatience in the face of injustice and wrongdoing, including myself, and feel guilty if such 'negative' emotions emerge, especially if the situation involves yourself.

It would be much more helpful and realistic if more religious leaders could avoid counselling their followers to constantly squelch themselves and offer wisdom instead about life's difficulties and tragedies. A lot of effort can go into trying to divert one's natural reactions rather than accepting that they're understandable and can be worked through and their presence doesn't mean you're sinful or disobedient or a bad or defective person.

The meek shall inherit the earth. Be peaceable with all [people]. Anger = sin. Acquiesce. Obey. Stay silent.

Such messages can sound poetic in context (Psalms, etc) but are all too often misapplied and used as cudgels over the flock. If a situation calls for it, anger is a normal and understandable response. Too bad the message we often repeatedly hear is that it's wrong, misplaced, inappropriate. Being appropriate was all too often held up, during my forays into various church groups, as a high ideal. Often it's not all that great - in fact, depending on the circumstances, being 'appropriate' could be highly inappropriate. Ssshhhh, don't make waves. What? And let evil abound?

In this case of the mass murderer the judge called him "morally bankrupt" and his actions "pure evil". He showed no remorse at his hearing.

It's OK to be angry. And good to hear a religious leader say it.

Here's a link to an article about the case:

(Edited for clarity)

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 02/10/2019 04:23PM by Nightingale.

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Posted by: Concerned Citizen 2.0 ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 04:07PM times past,this would have been handled with the local Constabulary. A gallows built, date set, verdict reaffirmed, sentence carried out. How society has morphed into creating the ultra-legalistic monstrosity we have now seems strange and foreign at best.........

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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 06:59PM

and your point is ...

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: February 14, 2019 12:14PM

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 04:36PM

I thought this was going to be about TSCC. But I can see the moral bankruptcy connection.

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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 05:07PM

It kind of is about TSCC, babylon. That's included in my mention of religious leaders and different faith/church groups. I have spoken here often about having been JW and then joining the Mormon Church, both repressive, controlling organizations that micromanage the lives of adherents and tell them how to think and what to feel. So this time I just kept it general and didn't flesh out the exact application.

But you got the gist anyway, it seems. :)

It wasn't good for me to be inculcated with the "don't be angry" message as I was naturally a meek, obedient, trusting person anyway. That intensified my tendency in that direction.

I could, though, sometimes speak up on behalf of others in the face of frank injustice inside those groups, but not usually for myself. The lesson I learned from all the programming was that the evil of anger was intensified if it was on your own behalf. To be avoided then.

Too bad they can't just give general lessons about life, or something instead of getting all up in your face about how to feel and think and act. But that's leaving things too loosey-goosey for them - you may not knuckle under as they want you to.

One example of a total squelch on my part, which I still regret mightily, was not even with JWs or Mormons but rather a fundamentalist Christian group (yeah, I went there too). They preached strongly against divorce and it was grounds for excommunication in their church. One day a divorced man from another congregation (same church) came in after the service started, accompanied by his second wife and her young daughter. They sat at the back, as required to do (he was ex'd). Who knows why they would want to attend under such circumstances. Maybe they didn't know they would be frozen out. I didn't know either, other than a brief whisper from the people I was with who told me not to speak to them. I felt all hot and sweaty with the discomfort of my conflicting emotions about it. Still, as usual, I was "obedient". They remained seated as we left and while I couldn't help but nod a silent hello as I passed them I didn't speak. I didn't know them but could at least have said hello aloud. They came about three times. Three times I passed them as I left the service and three times I just nodded without speaking, despite my own discomfort at the discourtesy.

It was a small congregation that eventually petered out as they never attracted any new folks, except me, understandably with such doctrine/practice. Ex'ing wasn't enough, that little family had to be shunned as well even if they obviously wanted to attend. I felt especially awful for the young girl. How desperately uncomfortable must it have been for her. I did speak to one of the elders (with whom I boarded) about how nasty it was but he was implacable.

Just one example of how I was too obedient, in too many situations, for too long. Obedient in action, word, even feelings.

Squelch. Squelch. Squelch.

But God is Love. So they preach. The dichotomies always got to me.

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: February 14, 2019 12:09PM

Men are that they might have joy, native Americans are descendants of ancient steelmaking Jews, and Joseph didn’t have sex with his 30+ wives.

Mormonism is just bad socialization. It’s okay as a tribal thing, but Utah has moved beyond tribalism.

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Posted by: angela ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 05:55PM

It is good to be angry, as long as it's not toxic within yourself.

I have known people who live their lives so angry, and their anger is/was certainly justified based on the events, that the anger was hurting them more than the perp.

Anger can be a tricky 2 edged sword

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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 06:03PM

I was thinking more about a focused individual situation-based reaction, not a permanent outlook on life. But I didn't specify that.

Good point, angela, that it's no way to live your entire existence.

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: February 10, 2019 10:14PM

wrong. I remember my boyfriend asking me on the phone (when we first reconnected) who told me I couldn't be angry.

Well, it was drilled into us to the point that my mother was always concerned that the neighbors would think we were horrible for arguing with each other.

I talked to my exmo therapist about it after my boyfriend asked me that and he talked to me about the mormon teachings about it and the fact that, yes, we do have a right to be angry. No, we don't have to live lives of anger, but we also have the right to be angry. It isn't the same thing by far. I couldn't have made it this far in life if I hadn't WORKED THROUGH my anger at the injustices that have been dished out to me in my life by the lds church and by my ex. After what he put me through, most people are SHOCKED that he lives downstairs . . . No, I'm not just stupid.

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Posted by: SL Cabbie ( )
Date: February 14, 2019 02:08AM

And I see some yayhoo of a psychologist--probably trying to make a name for himself and trading off Kubler Ross's seminal work--stuck an article in "Psychology Today" (only a little more credible than the National Enquirer in my book) and tried to insist they "were wrong."

His understanding of the grief process overlooks an important point, that it is not "linear," and the first two stages, denial and anger, are ones we "return to" as part of the process, and "bargaining" frequently repeats itself.

Incidentally, to bring this back to "on topic," the separation process one undergoes in leaving the LDS Church is also a grieving process.

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Posted by: kathleen ( )
Date: February 11, 2019 02:28AM

Horrible. Hard to believe that murderer didn't receive consecutive life sentences.

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Posted by: levantlurker ( )
Date: February 14, 2019 02:49AM

American society's desire for retributive justice is largely based on Old Testament/Code of Hammurabi ethics. We place a higher value on granting the victim's families their desire for vengeance over the actual needs of protecting protecting society-at-large. Countries that have moved away from this mindset and adopted more utilitarian forms of justice have continued to see crime rates fall.

I hope we follow in the path of Canada, Europe, and even some Latin American nations. It will mean that we're finally breaking free of arbitrary rules invented by Gods and Babylonian dictators.

Here's a good article on the subject -

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: February 14, 2019 12:00PM

It's anger that helps me stay resilient after TSCC wreaked havoc on my family. It helps me to level the playing field. Not out of revenge but to expose it for the fraud it perpetuates.

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