Right or wrong. Black or white. We do love our absolutes.
But it’s really not that simple.
Oh, we wish it were. And we act like it.
But it’s not.
I frequent some interesting places on the internet. Places where truths are told. Unpleasant ones. Uncomfortable ones. Truths people don’t believe because they are hard to believe. At least for relatively normal people. Like I knew about Jeffrey Epstein more than a decade before his deeds became public knowledge, thanks to some of these places where uncomfortable truths are told.
And I’ve learned much more over the years.
Sure, I take it with a grain of salt at first, and file it away. And then maybe I see more. And more. The evidence mounts. And then, I get what I can only describe as a “vibe.”
I can’t explain it. But I think it’s related to being able to read adults’ minds when I was a kid. Oh, how that worried me, because I thought THEY could read MINE and I didn’t want them to! So yeah, a vibe. Take it or leave it. Believe it or not. But you might want to hear me out.
When I get these vibes, they are usually supported, eventually, with real evidence. Sometimes it takes a long time to get the real evidence. Like with Epstein. I got that vibe fairly early on him but it was a long time before it became really public. More than a decade. But I knew way back. I just…knew.
This happens with contemporary issues too.
And some are pretty unpopular in the zeitgeist.
For example, I didn’t see any of the Depp trial. But I did see an interview with Amber Heard not that long ago and I knew she wasn’t lying about abuse. Sure, she isn’t likable and didn’t tell truth about everything. But in that libel trial (and remember, it was a libel trial not an abuse trial) the vibe I got on Johnny Depp wasn’t particularly good.
It’s not always black hats or white hats. Women are often discounted. And I am experienced at identifying abusers.
Oh, some of the social media tribe just hated me for saying that and a couple flounced off in a huff. Well, as an Oklahoma friend likes to say, “Boo-hoo!” I’m not going to shut up just because people don’t like what I have to say. It really doesn’t matter to me whether they like it or not. It’s still the vibe. Like I said, shades of grey.
And now to the real point of today’s post.
I remember watching the big documentary on the Menendez brothers on Hulu a couple years ago. As always, I sat, watched and listened carefully. At the end, I knew Erik and Lyle were telling the truth about the abuse their father perpetrated on them.
People don’t want to believe it–first, that someone that influential would do something like that. But also, those young men’s behavior after they shot their parents was pretty awful. They went hog-wild with the money they inherited and it looked like the motive.
But their behavior with their inheritance doesn’t change my vibe. They were molested by their father. Repeatedly. This, I know.
I wasn’t in the room.
I’ve never talked to one of the brothers. But I know. They were abused by their father.
They got life sentences without parole.
And now, the lid is being lifted by members of former boy bands, who reveal they were were subjected to rape and abuse by music executives.
Jose Menendez was a music executive. And he was one of the molesters, they imply.
You don’t even have to read between the lines to get the message.
I believe he was a predator. That he abused his sons.
Now THAT was wrong.
Apparently, boy bands were fantastic prey back in the day, and sexual predators in the music industry targeted them. Oh, I know, it’s hard to believe so many “perverts” are out there. But yep, they are. And that sweet young flesh is irresistible.
Oh, this happened (happens?) in Hollywood all the time. Back in the first half of the 20th century it was rampant. And secret. Young actresses (and I do mean young) were targeted. Like, for example, young Judy Garland. Is it any wonder her life was was so messed up? But that’s a post for another day.
Of course, murder is also wrong.
It’s more than conceivable that money was not the sons’ motive for the parents’ murders. Because that kind of abuse of a young man, a boy, a teen, does terrible things to their psyche. I can’t even imagine. It could lead to murder.
It’s not a defense. But it IS an explanation. And it indicates that the real motive might not have been money at all. In fact, I don’t think it was. I think money was a side benefit.
That father was a predator. Those young men were telling the excruciatingly embarrassing truth about that. Publicly.
Mom was, well, complicit. Unable to protect her sons from her powerful and authoritarian husband. That was wrong, too.
I have trouble with that kind of maternal behavior.
Maybe because I have seen cowardly maternal behavior up close and personal. And sure, I get it: women do what they must to survive. But we do hold mothers to a higher standard. At least I do.
Kitty Menendez might have blown the whistle on her husband. She might have protected her sons. She might still be alive. And the sons might have been done with their sentences by now. Because life without parole is a heavy burden for a crime with those circumstances.
Apparently abuse of minors is rampant all over the world. Even in our “great” (ha) nation. Power and money can build a formidable wall of secrecy. They can bury concepts like right or wrong.
Those boys. Victims, themselves, who no one wanted to believe. Who got life without parole.
I shake my head.
It’s all I can do.