In Reply to: Re: How I look at this posted by MV on January 24, 2003 at 17:07:24:
MV, to clarify one of your statements before someone jumps all over you. You said, "IMO, noone has the right to judge others no matter how much evil they've done in the past."
I believe I understand what you mean by this. We shouldn't sit around and pass judgment on each other if we were not involved. But I believe you will agree that if a person was sexually abused in the Family or mentally abused in a victor camp that that individual definitely DOES have the right to judge those who abused him or her for the evil done in the past. Just to clarify that, as I don't think you were denying that.
Thanks for your comments, but doggone it, I have to disagree with you again. You said,
"Donny I appreciate your comments but with all due respect it's the pervading attitude of categorizing, the putting in a box, the constant weighing and measuring of guilt, culpability, innocence, etc that I object too. Everyone deserves a fresh start."
I don't think that individuals taking personal ownership of the crimes they committed in the cult is a "pervading attitude of categorizing." There are individual ex-members out there who did things that were wrong, unethical, and downright criminal. They have to wrestle with their own consiences on those issues. In fact, chances are good that they think about those things all the time. And they should, not only for their own road to healing, but for the sake of those whom they personally hurt. In fact, until they deal with the issues of the past there is no way they can get a fresh start.
I do not believe in blanket categorizations. But I think what bothers SGAs is when they hear people from our generation, again and again, refusing to take ownership of the responsibility for crimes perpetrated against them. I'm not talking about you, as I believe you were more of a victim than other FGAs, so this is not directed to you. You can legitimately say you have a right to self-worth, to not being condemned, not being categorized and to healing.
But FGAs who actively participated in abuse or oppression of whatever kind, really MUST own up to their guilt. When we have wronged someone neither we nor they can truly heal until we own up to our guilt and responsibility. "Guilt" is not necessarily a bad label. I'm not talking here about condemnation or labels or accepting false guilt.
But recognizing true guilt makes people sorry and makes them want to change and make restitution. Recognizing guilt is an unselfish act and takes incredible courage. Recognizing responsibility and wrongdoing is a necessary step to healing. For all parties.