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Peter ELLIS: - Creche kid says 'I am sick of being called a liar', DomPost 16 Aug 03

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Fred

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Aug 16, 2003, 8:40:25 AM8/16/03
to
"THE DOMINION POST"
Wellington, New Zealand
Saturday August 16 2003.
Magazine
Pages: F4-F4.

'I AM SICK OF BEING CALLED A LIAR'

A decade after the Christchurch Civic Creche sex abuse trial, two of
the children whose evidence has now been called into question by
supporters of Peter Ellis tell LINLEY BONIFACE why they feel betrayed.

TOM and Katrina went to creche together. This is the first time
they've seen each other in a decade, and the two 17-year-olds have a
lot to catch up on. But their conversation isn't about friends, or
cars, or schools; it's about things that happened to them in toilets,
and bathtubs, and other secret places. Most of all, it's about
memories - memories they've been struggling to make sense of since
they were little.

"Do you remember the black jackets and the hats?" says Katrina,
leaning forward on the sofa at Tom's parents' house and crossing her
arms across her chest. "I keep remembering these - yeah, they're black
- black jackets and these hats. Do you remember them? Do you?"

Later, she looks at Tom again. "Did you use to have nightmares? I had
nightmares for a long time."

Tom and Katrina are not their real names, which cannot be used for
legal reasons. If you've read Lynley Hood's book, A City Possessed:
The Christchurch Civic Creche Case, you'll recognise them as Bart
Dogwood and Kari Lacebark. If you saw the double page advertisement in
the Sunday Star-Times earlier this month, headlined The Toddler
Testimonies, you'll know them as B and K. And the "he" Tom refers to
is, of course, Peter Ellis, who is, depending on your viewpoint,
either a ruthless and unrepentant convicted child molester or the
victim of one of the greatest miscarriages of justice in New Zealand's
history.

The campaign to clear Ellis is gaining momentum: more than 800 people
have signed a petition calling for a royal commission of inquiry into
the case. The petition is to go before a select committee hearing at
Parliament later this month.

Tom and Katrina were pivotal to the Crown case against Ellis. In June
1993, Ellis was found guilty of 16 out of 25 charges of sexual abuse
of seven young children (three of the convictions were quashed a year
later, when one child withdrew her allegations). Three of the
convictions related to Tom and four related to Katrina. Ellis was
sentenced to 10 years in prison, and served seven.

There was no physical evidence, and there were no adult eyewitnesses
to the abuse; Ellis was found guilty on the basis of the children's
evidential interviews and courtroom testimony. The jury's decision
that such young children could be trusted to give an accurate report
of what had happened to them has polarised commentators ever since.

Do young children lie? And, if so, do they lie about something as
serious as sexual abuse? Can they draw the line between fact and
fantasy, between memory and imagination? And, most importantly, can
they be manipulated by those they trust into believing the unreal is
real?

The children in the Christchurch Civic Creche case have grown into
teenagers. They no longer need to be told the difference between a
truth and a lie; they don't need an interpreter to help them describe
parts of their bodies, or sexual acts or the way they feel. They have
found their voices.

The Dominion Post was present when Tom and Katrina met up a week ago,
at Tom's house in Christchurch. It was the first time they had seen
each other since the end of the High Court trial. They had spoken on
the phone a few days previously, when Tom told Katrina he was thinking
of breaking his 10-year silence by talking to a reporter about the
case. Katrina said she'd like to take part in the interview, too.

It was not an easy meeting. Tom and Katrina felt understandably
anxious and uncertain; we spoke for almost four hours, and by the end
of the evening they looked exhausted and shaky. Both teenagers were so
tired the next day that they were allowed to stay home from school.

Also present were Tom's parents, Jill and Michael, and Katrina's
parents, Sarah and Gavin. Their names have also been changed to
protect the identities of the children. Tom and Katrina were asked a
final few further questions at the end of the evening, when they were
talking together in Tom's room.

For the first half hour, it was like any meeting between people who
had known each other well a long time ago but had since lost touch:
the parents exclaimed over how much each other's children had grown,
and exchanged the usual anecdotes about the trials of raising
teenagers. Then the conversation took a darker turn.

First of all, Tom wanted to say why he'd agreed to the interview. He
had been thinking about talking for some time, he said, but the
catalyst had been the much-heralded advertisement in the Sunday
Star-Times on August 3. The ad was paid for by publisher Barry Colman,
who called the children's evidential interviews "gibberish" and said
they would show Ellis was the victim of a hysterical witch-hunt.

"I would have been happy to never talk about the abuse ever again. I
want to forget it. But I'm sick of being called a liar. And if I don't
say anything, Peter Ellis will keep going around saying he's innocent
and more people will believe him," says Tom.

"The only thing that ad did was to make it harder for me and Katrina
and for all the other kids to live with what happened. If someone had
told me when I was six that everything I said would end up all over
the papers 10 years later, I wouldn't have wanted to testify. I feel
like my trust has been betrayed."

The ad featured transcripts of interviews with Tom and Katrina, some
of which were not played to the jury (Justice Minister Phil Goff has
said the Crown Law Office assured him the ad contained no new
evidence, and that all transcripts had been made available to defence
lawyers to use in cross-examinations before the jury convicted Ellis).

Katrina believed the ad made her look "like an idiot", and she was
particularly angry that a highlighted quote misrepresented what she
had said.

The highlighted quote read:

Q When his penis touched you there, were your clothes on or off?

A On.

Q They were on. What about his clothes?

A They were on.

. . .

A I want to go. How long have I been here now?

The quote implies Katrina claimed Ellis touched her with his penis
while he was fully clothed. The missing part of the excerpt between
"They were on" and "I want to go", which was featured in much smaller
type in the body of the text, runs as follows:

Q They were on, too?

A Yeah, but not his trousers.

In a second highlighted quote, one of the children referred to going
to the "womble area" - which, to those unfamiliar with the creche,
would suggest the child had confused aspects of the case with a TV
cartoon. In fact, younger children at Christchurch Civic Creche were
known as Wombles, and pre-schoolers were Big Kids. Comments like this
were put into context during the trial.

The Colman ad also claimed the children's evidence changed markedly
over the course of their interviews. In Tom's first interview, it
said, "all B [Tom] could come up with was a memory of Ellis cleaning
him up on the creche changing table. The contrast between that story
and the bizarre allegations in his later interviews (recorded after
months of parental questioning and sexual abuse therapy) is
extraordinary".

This accusation - that parents and counsellors manipulated the
children into making up the allegations of abuse - is the cornerstone
of Lynley Hood's book. It infuriates Tom: "It's bullshit that we were
told what to say The parents had nothing to do with what we said; all
my parents ever said to me was that I should tell the truth.

"Of course we didn't say much at our first interview. Would you? I
didn't want to say anything to anyone I didn't trust. I was real
scared of Peter Ellis."

Katrina: "How would a five-year-old know about ejaculation? My parents
had never talked about that to me. I was able to describe it because
of what Peter Ellis did to me, not because anyone had told me about
it"

KATRINA'S dad, Gavin, says he finds it frustrating that transcripts
can be taken out of context, without any of the intense scrutiny that
occurred during the judicial process. "The jury was able to see the
children giving evidence on video. They watched very young children go
through the anxiety of remembering things that were very painful to
them. They didn't just hear the words; they were able to see the
children's body language. They were also able to see that the children
backed up each other's stories."

Much has been made of the number of interviews the children were
subjected to. Tom and Katrina say the experience was indeed very
distressing - Katrina asked her mother to check every toilet and look
behind every door in the building where the interviews took place -
but they do not believe they were pushed into saying anything they
didn't want to say.

During our interview, the parents' relationships with Tom and Katrina
appeared supportive and caring. Gavin, Sarah, Jill and Michael did not
attempt to speak on behalf of their children, or tell them what to
say, and there was no evidence of coaching. Indeed, if there was a
surprise it was that the two sets of parents seemed very different to
the way they were portrayed in A City Possessed.

In Hood's book, one mother-who she called Ms Magnolia - is described
as the instigator of the abuse accusations. Hood says it was "probably
inevitable" that Ms Magnolia would accuse Peter Ellis of abusing her
son, and implies that other parents who made complaints on behalf of
their children simply got caught up in the witch hunt.

The language used to describe the parents is often dismissive. When
describing Sarah's initial concerns that her daughter had been abused,
she says: "The next of Ms Magnolia's supporters to spring into action
was Ms Lacebark." Jill and Michael's questioning of their son is an
"interrogation"; when Tom reveals the location of an alleged incident
of abuse, he has "hit the jackpot". After Tom had given his evidence
in court, said Hood, "the rest of the kids seemed tame".

Tom and Katrina's parents have a rather different recollection of the
whole affair. For starters, far from jumping on the abuse bandwagon,
they say they wanted to believe it wasn't true. Both mothers felt sure
their kids would have told them if anyone was hurting them.

Sarah had worried for months about a persistent red rash around
Katrina's genital area. She had suspected abuse for a fleeting moment,
but immediately dismissed the thought as ridiculous. The idea that she
could have been abused at the creche was unthinkable to Sarah, who
served on the management committee.

Jill and Michael say they missed the first signs that Tom was in
trouble. "One night when Michael had an old high school mate over for
dinner, Tom put his fork in the carrots and said, 'This looks just
like a big fat penis that you put in your mouth.' We sent him to his
room and told him he couldn't come out till he'd apologised."

Michael: "When Tom did finally start telling us what had happened, I
kept saying, 'Are you sure about that?' I didn't really want to
believe him."

MANY of the children involved in the case were said to have suffered
behavioural problems, including nightmares, tantrums, bedwetting,
separation anxiety, fear of men, sexual disorders and toileting
problems. For a year and a half before the abuse was uncovered,
Katrina was terrified of going to the toilet. She also lost her
coordination. "I used to play ball with Dad, but I froze up. I
couldn't catch a ball, and I couldn't kick a ball, and I couldn't
climb the bars. I'd call Mum out to watch me on the bars, but I'd just
hang there without being able to move my hands," says Katrina.

The day after Katrina told her parents she was being abused, she
called her parents outside to watch her on the bars again. Her mother
assumed that, as always, she'd be unable to move. "But I was
wrong-that day she was able to move," Sarah remembers.

"For a week after her disclosures, we had our happy, jocular little
girl back again. Then it got worse. And then she told us she wanted to
kill herself because she was so frightened."

Like Katrina, Tom was frightened of going to the toilet - the smell of
toilets was, for a long time, unbearable to him. He had eating
problems, insisted on being fully dressed at all times and became a
perfectionist. He was terrified of baths-Ellis was convicted of
abusing him in a bath - and found large groups of children and certain
children's games extremely frightening.

But is it the memory of the abuse that frightened him, or just the
recollection of being told he had been abused? Now, at 17, can he
honestly say that he remembers the abuse
itself?

"Yeah. I remember lots of it vividly," says Tom.

Tom's testimony was the most controversial of all the children's
because some of it was so bizarre and disturbing. His allegations of
ritual abuse in particular have become a focus of attention for Ellis'
supporters. Does Tom still believe everything he said was true?

Yes, says Tom. "I stand by everything I said when I was little. I
didn't make anything up. But back then I believed everything I was
told. Now 1 can make more sense of it . . . for example, I was told I
was put down a trap door. Now I think it was just a laundry chute with
cushions at the bottom. But when you're a little kid, you think adults
are always telling you the truth."

Jill shows me a picture Tom drew when he was seven. The picture is of
a graveyard. Children are buried in coffins under the earth; there are
speech bubbles coming from their mouths saying "help". A stick figure
man with big eyes and a big smile is standing above them. "Peter is
laughing," reads the caption.

The graveyard theme emerged from another source during Ellis' trial.
Childcare worker Tracy O'Connor said Ellis had come up with the idea
of taking "staged" photos of a children's party at the creche. Ellis
told a boy to lie on the ground on his back with his hands crossed
over his chest, as though he were dead. A spade had been placed so it
appeared to be impaling him.

Katrina is equally vehement when asked if she remembers the abuse. "I
remember lots of it. Most of all, I remember how scared it made me."

TOM and Katrina are bright, articulate, attractive teenagers. They do,
however, seem older than their years, and the decade since the trial
has clearly not been easy for either of them.

For Tom, his love of sport and the support of his family - especially
his older brothers - helped him to feel safe again. He has a
girlfriend and lots of friends, not one of whom knows he went to
Christchurch Civic Creche.

Katrina seems to have found it harder to cope. For a long time, she
used to vomit whenever she talked about Ellis. She saw him once, in a
shop, and felt sick all over again.

She has a boyfriend, but even the thought of sex triggers flashbacks.

Sport has been very important to Katrina, and has been a great healer.
Friends have also been crucial to her recovery.

"I've got an awesome bunch of friends. I always try to have a group of
good friends now, because when I was little I lost all my friends. I
don't know anyone I went to preschool with.

"I think I grew up too quickly You know, my friends often say how much
they loved being little. I didn't; I hated being little. But I've done
with crying. I just want to be a normal teenager now."

Most of the parents of the Christchurch Civic Creche children have
lost contact with each other. There was an obvious breach between
those who supported Ellis and those who didn't, but parents who
believed their children had been abused were discouraged from
talking to each other for fear of contaminating the evidence. Some
have found it too painful to stay in touch; some have left
Christchurch; some thought it best for their children if the creche
was never mentioned again.

One father who left Christchurch said a teacher advised him to erase
the name of his son's old crčche from his school files. "That was one
of the best pieces of advice I've ever been given," he says.

Tom and Katrina's parents have only told their most trusted friends of
their involvement in the case. They often hear workmates say they
believe Ellis is innocent. Sarah and Gavin have had enough now:
they're thinking about leaving New Zealand for good.

Both families ask repeatedly why everyone seems to believe Ellis,
despite the fact that his case has already been through a jury trial,
two appeals and a ministerial inquiry And they ask why so many
journalists seem happy to report everything Ellis and his supporters
say without bothering to ask the victims' families for comment.

They also point out the irony in the fact that Ellis has a well-run
and well-bankrolled campaign behind him, while the families don't even
have a legal representative.

The families believe A City Possessed tells only half the story
-Ellis' half - and were particularly angered by a recent comment by
Hood that the children deserved to "know the truth and go forward into
adulthood with the whole thing sorted".

Tom says the matter is sorted already "We were there, we know it
happened. It's not easy to live with, but I could live with it if
everyone didn't keep bringing it up all the time. The only closure I
want is for Peter Ellis to admit he did it."

At the end of the evening, Tom and Katrina give each other a hug. They
are like typical teenagers now, talking about mobile phones and mutual
friends and parties. Then Tom says how great it is to have someone who
knows his background; how it makes him feel less alone.

"It was good that our parents talked for us when we were little, but
we can speak up for ourselves now. We can do our own talking," says
Tom. "If Peter Ellis is reading this, I'd like him to know that I'm
not a scared little boy any longer."

Morrissey Breen

unread,
Aug 16, 2003, 3:47:05 PM8/16/03
to
Looks like Brian Edwards is not the only journalist (so-called) to be
sympathetic to these two young liars that have re-emerged from
deserved obscurity. Dominion Post writer Linley Boniface has made a
real fool of herself too. And a nitwit named Fred <fre...@nomind.net>
apparently approves of the Dominion Post's latest attack on Peter
Ellis, judging from what he posted up in message
news:<339sjvs0fun9edmm4...@4ax.com>...

>
> 'I AM SICK OF BEING CALLED A LIAR'

This writer humbly suggests that these two stop telling lies then.

>
> Most of all, it's about memories - memories they've been struggling to make sense of
> since they were little.

Let's get this straight: as shown with perfect clarity in A City
Possessed, the "memories" are the fevered imaginations of some
"counsellors", together with their gullible, loving parents.

>
> Do young children lie?
Yes. But the real villains are the ADULTS - especially the police and
counsellors - who lied.

>
> And, if so, do they lie about something as serious as sexual abuse?

Clearly they did. So might anyone when subjected to such brutal,
relentless questioning as that of Karen Zealous.



>
> Can they draw the line between fact and fantasy, between memory and imagination?

Obviously they cannot.

>
> The children in the Christchurch Civic Creche case have grown into
> teenagers. They no longer need to be told the difference between a
> truth and a lie;

Yes they do. As does the Dominion Post's reporter, obviously.

>
>..... by the end of the evening they looked exhausted and shaky.
They must have felt like they did when they were begging Karen Zealous
to stop asking them questions and let them go home when they were
tiny.

>
> "I would have been happy to never talk about the abuse ever again. I
> want to forget it. But I'm sick of being called a liar."

He IS a liar. One can forgive a child, perhaps. But a 17 year old
maliciously repeating those lies is surely culpable.


>
> "The only thing that ad did was to make it harder for me and Katrina
> and for all the other kids to live with what happened.

Nothing happened. This teenager KNOWS nothing happened. Why is he
still lying?

>
> Katrina believed the ad made her look "like an idiot",

No, the ad makes the corrupt and zealous "counsellors" look like
idiots. What makes Katrina (NOT HER REAL NAME!) look like an idiot is
her continuing to tell these lies.

>
> Tom: "It's bullshit that we were told what to say. The parents had nothing to do with


> what we said; all my parents ever said to me was that I should tell the truth."

This young fellow clearly loves his parents and wants to protect them
from the consequences of their folly. Hence his lying.

>
> KATRINA'S dad, Gavin, says he finds it frustrating that transcripts

> can be taken out of context, ... <SNIP BLATHER>.....
Unfortunately for Gavin (NOT HIS REAL NAME) the whole idiotic fantasy
that is the "case" against Ellis is up on the net. It is also
thoroughly covered in Lynley Hood's book.

>
> "Yeah. I remember lots of it vividly," says Tom.

Liar.


>
> Tom's testimony was the most controversial of all the children's
> because some of it was so bizarre and disturbing. His allegations of
> ritual abuse in particular have become a focus of attention for Ellis'
> supporters. Does Tom still believe everything he said was true?
>
> Yes, says Tom. "I stand by everything I said when I was little. I
> didn't make anything up. But back then I believed everything I was told."

Don't beat yourself up about it kid. Your parents believed eveything
THEY were told too - and they were supposed to be adults.

>
> Katrina is equally vehement when asked if she remembers the abuse. "I
> remember lots of it. Most of all, I remember how scared it made me."

She is talking about the "psychologists" - right?

>
>...parents who believed their children had been abused were


discouraged from talking
> to each other for fear of contaminating the evidence.

Ha ha ha ha ha! Now THAT might just be the funniest lie anyone has
told this year!

>
> They often hear workmates say they
> believe Ellis is innocent. Sarah and Gavin have had enough now:
> they're thinking about leaving New Zealand for good.

Good. We need disturbed fantasists telling sick implanted lies in
this country like we need another Roger mcClay as Children's
Commisioner. Could they take their abusers with them?

>
> Both families ask repeatedly why everyone seems to believe Ellis,
> despite the fact that his case has already been through a jury trial,
> two appeals and a ministerial inquiry And they ask why so many
> journalists seem happy to report everything Ellis and his supporters
> say without bothering to ask the victims' families for comment.

More lies. They refused to speak to Lynley Hood.

>
> They also point out the irony in the fact that Ellis has a well-run
> and well-bankrolled campaign behind him, while the families don't even
> have a legal representative.

Their lies were backed by all the force and authority of the state.
Their lies are still being covered up by the state. When will the
inert Minister of Justice, Phil Goff, DO something?

.......< SNIP ignorant lies about Ms hood's book being unfair to them.
>......

......< SNIP risible praise of credulous Dominion Post mis-reporter
Boniface.>......


*****************************************************************************
Little Katrina (aged 6): "I want to go. How long have I been here
now?"
*****************************************************************************

Brian

unread,
Aug 16, 2003, 4:44:24 PM8/16/03
to

On 16 Aug 2003 12:47:05 -0700, morriss...@yahoo.com (Morrissey
Breen) wrote:


>Looks like Brian Edwards is not the only journalist (so-called) to be
>sympathetic to these two young liars that have re-emerged from
>deserved obscurity. Dominion Post writer Linley Boniface has made a
>real fool of herself too. And a nitwit named Fred <fre...@nomind.net>
>apparently approves of the Dominion Post's latest attack on Peter
>Ellis, judging from what he posted up in message
>news:<339sjvs0fun9edmm4...@4ax.com>...

I do not think he is a nitwit for posting Linley Boniface's article.
The case needs exposure from all angles.

I do think that Brian Edwards showed that he has little appreciation
of the issues involved. The first half of the interview almost
descended into the banal. A little more intelligent discussion
followed.

>
>>
>> 'I AM SICK OF BEING CALLED A LIAR'
>This writer humbly suggests that these two stop telling lies then.

I think it's important to note that these two teenagers are not liars.
They almost definitely are saying what they now truly believe to have
happened. The sincerity with which such children talk, is the stuff
of which has sent too many men to prison.

(Their statements may also be largely motivated by embarrassment.
People in general - not just these children - almost invariably spend
a great deal of energy in justifying their previous statements,
reserach etc. It's a very difficult and embarrassing ask for anybody
to turn 180 degrees on any position)

The children's sincerity and beliefs ARE important evidence. But such
evidence needs to be looked at in conjunction with how and when they
came to those views. As Lynley Hood said last night, the people who do
need to be focussed on are the parents and the child interviewers.

>
>>
>> Most of all, it's about memories - memories they've been struggling to make sense of
>> since they were little.
>Let's get this straight: as shown with perfect clarity in A City
>Possessed, the "memories" are the fevered imaginations of some
>"counsellors", together with their gullible, loving parents.

Yes.


>
>>
>> Do young children lie?
>Yes. But the real villains are the ADULTS - especially the police and
>counsellors - who lied.

Again. Please leave out the word "lie". Even the adults, the
interviewers did not "lie". They were misguided, for sure, but were
also acting out of deeply held beliefs, and a justified outrage over
the subject of sexual abuse in general. They were caught up
personally in the prevailing sexual abuse hysteria - and many of such
counsellors etc were sexual abuse victims themselves.

What they failed to do was differentiate between their outrage over
sexual abuse and their ability to consider that an accused man might
actually be innocent.

This was not just a failing in the Peter Ellis case. It happened
throughout the country, and is one of the reasons why a Royal
Commission of Inquiry is so important.


>> And, if so, do they lie about something as serious as sexual abuse?
>Clearly they did. So might anyone when subjected to such brutal,
>relentless questioning as that of Karen Zealous.
>
>>
>> Can they draw the line between fact and fantasy, between memory and imagination?
>
>Obviously they cannot.

Important to understand the nature of memory. We are all subject to
hold false memories. The tragedy in the Ellis case (and in many
other cases of false allegations of sexual abuse in New Zealand) is
that false memories were unwittingly propagated - and in a subject
that affected scores of innocent men.

>>
>> The children in the Christchurch Civic Creche case have grown into
>> teenagers. They no longer need to be told the difference between a
>> truth and a lie;
>Yes they do. As does the Dominion Post's reporter, obviously.

The Dominion Post's reporter could have done much better, surely.

>>
>>..... by the end of the evening they looked exhausted and shaky.
>They must have felt like they did when they were begging Karen Zealous
>to stop asking them questions and let them go home when they were
>tiny.
>
>>
>> "I would have been happy to never talk about the abuse ever again. I
>> want to forget it. But I'm sick of being called a liar."
>He IS a liar. One can forgive a child, perhaps. But a 17 year old
>maliciously repeating those lies is surely culpable.

No .... Not lies.

No .... Not malicious.

Defending their beliefs
Defending themselves against embarrassment probably
Defending their parents, perhaps
Defending the money they received, possibly

>>
>> "The only thing that ad did was to make it harder for me and Katrina
>> and for all the other kids to live with what happened.
>
>Nothing happened. This teenager KNOWS nothing happened. Why is he
>still lying?

Because he actually believes what he is saying

>
>>
>> Katrina believed the ad made her look "like an idiot",
>
>No, the ad makes the corrupt and zealous "counsellors" look like
>idiots.


Yes.


>What makes Katrina (NOT HER REAL NAME!) look like an idiot is
>her continuing to tell these lies.

I do not think she is being made to look an idiot.

>> Tom: "It's bullshit that we were told what to say. The parents had nothing to do with
>> what we said; all my parents ever said to me was that I should tell the truth."
>
>This young fellow clearly loves his parents and wants to protect them
>from the consequences of their folly.

Yes


> Hence his lying.

Comments as above


>> KATRINA'S dad, Gavin, says he finds it frustrating that transcripts
>> can be taken out of context, ... <SNIP BLATHER>.....
>Unfortunately for Gavin (NOT HIS REAL NAME) the whole idiotic fantasy
>that is the "case" against Ellis is up on the net. It is also
>thoroughly covered in Lynley Hood's book.

Smile

<snip remainder>


Brian

paulsy

unread,
Aug 16, 2003, 5:07:32 PM8/16/03
to
On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 00:40:25 +1200, Fred <fre...@nevermind.net> wrote:

>'I AM SICK OF BEING CALLED A LIAR'
>
>A decade after the Christchurch Civic Creche sex abuse trial, two of
>the children whose evidence has now been called into question by
>supporters of Peter Ellis tell LINLEY BONIFACE why they feel betrayed.

Liar, Liar
Bum on fire!

robi...@btinternet.com

unread,
Aug 16, 2003, 5:20:13 PM8/16/03
to
On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 00:40:25 +1200, Fred <fre...@nevermind.net> wrote:

>"THE DOMINION POST"
>Wellington, New Zealand
>Saturday August 16 2003.
>Magazine
>Pages: F4-F4.
>
>'I AM SICK OF BEING CALLED A LIAR'
>
>A decade after the Christchurch Civic Creche sex abuse trial, two of
>the children whose evidence has now been called into question by
>supporters of Peter Ellis tell LINLEY BONIFACE why they feel betrayed.

In a previous post I commented unfavourably on the Evening Post,
having mistakenly only read the other article about the application
for legal aid, and not realising that this was the main article. This
article does not suffer from the problems I accused it of. It does not
hide from the difficulties of determining just what is true from early
childhood 'memories'. I suspect that 'Tom' and 'Karina' wlil have read
this article and felt that they have been treated fairly, but to those
aware of how easy it is to affect a childs memory, it will confirm
concerns that in todays terms Peter Ellis' trial was 'unsafe',
resulting from total lack of any proof of any of the crimes of which
he and others were accused, and indeed clear evidence that the
purported 'victims' had been manipulated to believe untruths. Children
in this situation are not liars, but victims of a different crime.

<most of article snipped>
I found the conclusion most interesting:

>"It was good that our parents talked for us when we were little, but
>we can speak up for ourselves now. We can do our own talking," says
>Tom. "If Peter Ellis is reading this, I'd like him to know that I'm
>not a scared little boy any longer."

It is good that Tom is no longer scared - being told as often as he
had what had supposedly been done to him would scare any small boy. It
is good too that his parents no longer speak for him - although in
establishing his beliefs they have given him a lasting legacy of harm,
for which the parents have not been charged or imprisoned, but paid
and sympathetically counselled.

ER

The Observer

unread,
Aug 16, 2003, 5:27:55 PM8/16/03
to


Operative word - paid. How much was paid, and to whom?

How NZ works - The Observer - http://nz.realisticpolitics.com

The Observer

unread,
Aug 16, 2003, 5:50:08 PM8/16/03
to


Money talks, bullshit walks.
Who paid how much to the parents?
Who paid how much to the 'experts'?
Who will contribute to a prosecution of those who DID interfere with the
children? Every single sicko who touched them in the course of
'examinations'. It needs a lawyer with guts, possibly John Rowan QC, who
took on killer cop Keith Abbott. The state won't. $100 for starters
here, to a suitable and credible trust fund.

Karen Hayward-King

unread,
Aug 16, 2003, 10:41:13 PM8/16/03
to
>> 'Freddy' wrote

On 16 Aug 2003 12:47:05 -0700, morriss...@yahoo.com (Morrissey
Breen) wrote:

>> 'I AM SICK OF BEING CALLED A LIAR'
>This writer humbly suggests that these two stop telling lies then.
>

I don't think that these kids are liars. They probably think that what
they remember and what they have been told is the truth.

>> Most of all, it's about memories - memories they've been struggling to make sense of
>> since they were little.
>Let's get this straight: as shown with perfect clarity in A City
>Possessed, the "memories" are the fevered imaginations of some
>"counsellors", together with their gullible, loving parents.
>

Exactly.

Unfortunately, these 'counselors' and the parents have shored up and
validated these 'memories' over the years.

>> Do young children lie?
>Yes. But the real villains are the ADULTS - especially the police and
>counsellors - who lied.
>

Yes, young children do lie. In this case though, I don't think it was
so much that the kids lied...more that they were manipulated by people
who had varying agendas. You have to be very careful when interviewing
young children in disclosure interviews. Young kids have wonderful
imaginations and are often very eager to please. It's very easy for an
interviewer to manipulate a kid into telling stuff that will fit an
interviewer's preconceived ideas of what happened.

<snip>


>>
>> The children in the Christchurch Civic Creche case have grown into
>> teenagers. They no longer need to be told the difference between a
>> truth and a lie;
>Yes they do. As does the Dominion Post's reporter, obviously.
>

But I don't think that they believe that what they are saying is a
lie.

>>..... by the end of the evening they looked exhausted and shaky.
>They must have felt like they did when they were begging Karen Zealous
>to stop asking them questions and let them go home when they were
>tiny.
>
>>
>> "I would have been happy to never talk about the abuse ever again. I
>> want to forget it. But I'm sick of being called a liar."
>He IS a liar. One can forgive a child, perhaps. But a 17 year old
>maliciously repeating those lies is surely culpable.

No, I don't believe that he is a liar.

You have to remember that this is the son, I believe, of 'Joy Bander'.
This is the kid who has had the video tapes of his disclosure played
to him over and over again while he was going through *therapy*. He's
also heard his mother repeat, over and over again, the graphic detail
of his *abuse*. David McLoughlin wrote in one of his North and South?
articles about an interview he did with 'Joy Bander' and how this
little boy was sitting near them listening to her tell all the details
of how he'd been *abused*. David talks about the look on this little
boy's face as he listen to his Mum. he talks about the little boys
eyes 'bulging'. His description on this kid's reaction made me feel
heartsick.

>>
>> "The only thing that ad did was to make it harder for me and Katrina
>> and for all the other kids to live with what happened.
>
>Nothing happened. This teenager KNOWS nothing happened. Why is he
>still lying?
>

He's not...not in his mind, anyway.

>> Katrina believed the ad made her look "like an idiot",
>
>No, the ad makes the corrupt and zealous "counsellors" look like
>idiots. What makes Katrina (NOT HER REAL NAME!) look like an idiot is
>her continuing to tell these lies.
>

No, she's not. She's simply repeating what she believes to be the
truth.

>> Tom: "It's bullshit that we were told what to say. The parents had nothing to do with
>> what we said; all my parents ever said to me was that I should tell the truth."
>
>This young fellow clearly loves his parents and wants to protect them
>from the consequences of their folly. Hence his lying.
>

Again , no. I don't think that it is anyway helpful to Peter Ellis's
case, to try to demonise the children. From what I have read about
him, I suspect that is not what he wants either..

<snip>


>>
>> "Yeah. I remember lots of it vividly," says Tom.
>Liar.

Of course he would remember it vividly. His mother wrote a book about
it....she has talked about it to reporters, etc in front of
him....he's had the video tapes of his disclosures played to him
repeatedly. Is it any surprise that his memories are vivid?

--
Karen Hayward-King

"I try to be as philosophical as the old lady
who said that the best thing about the future
is that it only comes one day at a time."

Dean Acheson

David McLoughlin

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 12:07:27 AM8/17/03
to
The Observer wrote:


<bons...@orcon.net.nz> wrote > > > 'I AM SICK OF BEING CALLED A LIAR'


> > This writer humbly suggests that these two stop telling lies then.


None of those little kids told lies. They really believed what their
parents primed them to say. Even their parents believed the tales
they were telling. Ellis never said they lied, just that they were
mistaken. The only person who said they lied was Justice Williams.

Dersu

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 3:32:06 AM8/17/03
to

"Fred" <fre...@nevermind.net> wrote in message

Most of all, it's about
> memories - memories they've been struggling to make sense of since
> they were little.

Of course the poor kids have been "struggling to make sense" of memories
that were implanted by sick and delusional people who were uncaring of the
catastrophic effect their brainwashing might have on little children. One
can only hope these kids will have the guts to put this wicked abuse by
their parents and social workers behind them and get on with their lives.
They will be fools to themselves if they allow the culture of victimhood to
blight their lives. They are, after all, alive and physically undamaged and
the world is waiting for them.

D.


Morrissey Breen

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 5:56:18 AM8/17/03
to
Karen Hayward-King <kiwi...@yellowsub.net> tells this writer (moi) to
tone it down in message
news:<temtjv8h5kft7m1f2...@4ax.com>...

>
> Again , no. I don't think that it is anyway helpful to Peter Ellis's
> case, to try to demonise the children. From what I have read about

> him, I suspect that is not what he wants either...

Point taken. However, I think that these children are being indulged
greatly here. There are other children who have had the courage to
retract the nonsense they were forced to spout by Karen Zealous and
her team. Why can these two not do the same?

Is Joy Bander (NOT HER REAL NAME) that scary that her grown child is
afraid to cross her?

Brian

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 6:23:18 AM8/17/03
to
On 17 Aug 2003 02:56:18 -0700, morriss...@yahoo.com (Morrissey
Breen) wrote:


It is not a question of courage. If they _honestly_ believe that they
have been sexually abused, they will have no inclination to "retract
the nonsense"

These children are only doing the same thing that many other children
have done in the last decade (with the assistance of the sex abuse
industry practitioners). The family suffering in New Zealand has
been huge as a result.

Many of these children are now retracting - but as with all beliefs,
people have to work things out for themselves. Do their OWN reality
checking, rather than being told what they supposedly should believe.

The younger the children are when brainwashed, the less the chances of
that happening. But for many men, caught up with the false
accusations of older children, teenagers and young adults, the
situation has much more hope. Those accusers are far more likely to
retract - often when they come out from the influence of those that
have "assisted" them to recover their stories of abuse - almost always
there are counsellors involved.


Note that I've been referring to false accusations above. I am not
trying to suggest that there are not real victims of abuse.


Brian

Joe

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 7:27:37 AM8/17/03
to
On 16 Aug 2003 12:47:05 -0700, morriss...@yahoo.com (Morrissey
Breen) wrote:

Wasn't it over 12 sodden agonising pages of absolute oral garbage
later?
I can't be bothered going over my copies of the transcripts at the
moment, so I may be wrong.
I leave it to my learned counsel to inform us.
Sheesh anyone would be more learned than Cathy Crawford,
Everthing was beyond her expertise, even the ability to tell the truth
from my experience.
Cheers, but fears that Goff will ever have a reality check.
*

Joe

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 7:34:06 AM8/17/03
to

Its not how good the defence is that counts,
Its how bad those who dispense our justice are!
Fears *

Kerry

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 7:17:52 AM8/17/03
to
On 17 Aug 2003 02:56:18 -0700, morriss...@yahoo.com (Morrissey
Breen) wrote:

>Karen Hayward-King <kiwi...@yellowsub.net> tells this writer (moi) to
>tone it down in message
>news:<temtjv8h5kft7m1f2...@4ax.com>...
>
>>
>> Again , no. I don't think that it is anyway helpful to Peter Ellis's
>> case, to try to demonise the children. From what I have read about
>> him, I suspect that is not what he wants either...
>
>Point taken. However, I think that these children are being indulged
>greatly here. There are other children who have had the courage to
>retract the nonsense they were forced to spout by Karen Zealous and
>her team. Why can these two not do the same?

Because they believe their memories?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Four be the things I am wiser to know:
Idleness, sorrow, a friend, and a foe.
Four be the things I'd been better without:
Love, curiousity, freckles, and doubt.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Nik

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 7:18:38 AM8/17/03
to
On 16 Aug 2003 12:47:05 -0700, morriss...@yahoo.com (Morrissey
Breen) wrote:

>Looks like Brian Edwards is not the only journalist (so-called) to be
>sympathetic to these two young liars that have re-emerged from
>deserved obscurity.

Your argument is reduced in the eyes of opponents when you make such
accusations. Lying involves a deliberate attempt to deceive on the
part of the person claiming a fact. Being misguided and reporting on
one's misguided beliefs does NOT make one a liar. The persons referred
to may well have been, we probably both agree that they have, lied to
by other agencies...

This is an important debate please don't trivialise/endanger it by
being unreasonable.

> Dominion Post writer Linley Boniface has made a
>real fool of herself too.

Accusing mistaken persons of lying when there is no attempt to
deceive, on their parts, will make our argument look foolish also.

Which, of course, it isn't.

Nik

Karen Hayward-King

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 2:44:22 PM8/17/03
to
On 17 Aug 2003 02:56:18 -0700, morriss...@yahoo.com (Morrissey
Breen) wrote:

>Karen Hayward-King <kiwi...@yellowsub.net> tells this writer (moi) to
>tone it down in message
>news:<temtjv8h5kft7m1f2...@4ax.com>...
>
>>
>> Again , no. I don't think that it is anyway helpful to Peter Ellis's
>> case, to try to demonise the children. From what I have read about
>> him, I suspect that is not what he wants either...
>
>Point taken. However, I think that these children are being indulged
>greatly here.

These kids believe that the abuse happened to them. I think that
letting them tell their stories could very well be helpful to the
Ellis's case.

>There are other children who have had the courage to
>retract the nonsense they were forced to spout by Karen Zealous and
>her team. Why can these two not do the same?

Because they don't think that they are lying....as I said above, I
believe that they honestly think that they were abused.

These two particular kids have been told for years that they have been
abused. They have had those beliefs reinforced by intense parental
involvement.... such as, a book being written about the case by one of
the mothers, one being shown videotapes of his disclosures, the other
mother wrote a booklet for her daughter about what happened to her and
so on. I doubt that the discussions have stopped over the years, as
witnessed by these two kids coming forward with their parents.

It's possible that the other kids (actually I think there was only
one, but I may be wrong) recanted, because they didn't have that type
of intense reinforcement.

As I have said before, while I believe that Peter Ellis is innocent
and I very much hope that he will eventually be cleared, I really fear
for these two kids in particular if and when that happens. They are as
much victims as Ellis is...and in many ways they are much more
vulnerable.

>Is Joy Bander (NOT HER REAL NAME) that scary that her grown child is
>afraid to cross her?

I said a year or so back, that I seriously wonder if *Joy Bander* was
suffering from a form of Munchausen by Proxy syndrome.

From all that I read and heard about her...and especially from her
book....I think that she is very involved in the *Cult of Victimhood*.
I think she sees herself as a victim in life...I think that she sees
what she believes happened to her son, as not only making him a
victim, but herself as well. I don't think that she sees herself or
her son as a survivor. I don't think that she has made that transition
from victim to survivor...I'm not even sure if she is capable of doing
that. Sadly, her beliefs and ways of dealing with life are reflected
back on her son.

Does that make her 'scary'? Possibly....

Karen Hayward-King

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 2:58:51 PM8/17/03
to
On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 22:23:18 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:


>Many of these children are now retracting - but as with all beliefs,
>people have to work things out for themselves. Do their OWN reality
>checking, rather than being told what they supposedly should believe.

Yes...but as you mention below, it really depends on how young the
children were at the time. Makes it even harder when there is a long
period of intense reinforcement, as I believe there has been in the
case of the two kids that appeared in the Dom article.

>
>The younger the children are when brainwashed, the less the chances of
>that happening. But for many men, caught up with the false
>accusations of older children, teenagers and young adults, the
>situation has much more hope. Those accusers are far more likely to
>retract - often when they come out from the influence of those that
>have "assisted" them to recover their stories of abuse - almost always
>there are counsellors involved.

Sadly, many of those counselors actually believed in what they were
doing. I was involved in the field around the time of the Ellis case
and I remember the *belief* system as being very rigid. Men 'did these
sorts of things' and 'a child should always be believed' and if a
woman was found to have made a false accusation then 'there must have
been some type of abuse that she was still covering up' or 'something
must have happened to her'.

I was removed for actively questioning these beliefs.....and 'liking
men too much', amongst other things. :-)

Brian

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 4:32:23 PM8/17/03
to
On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 11:58:51 -0700, Karen Hayward-King
<kiwi...@yellowsub.net> wrote:

>On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 22:23:18 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>
>
>>Many of these children are now retracting - but as with all beliefs,
>>people have to work things out for themselves. Do their OWN reality
>>checking, rather than being told what they supposedly should believe.
>
>Yes...but as you mention below, it really depends on how young the
>children were at the time. Makes it even harder when there is a long
>period of intense reinforcement, as I believe there has been in the
>case of the two kids that appeared in the Dom article.

I think you are right, with regard to the creche kids.

I similarly look sadly at cases of parental alienation where there has
been an acrimonious divorce - especially when the children are
toddlers. Fathers (mostly) are shut out of those children's lives -
and even worse are being brought up with a distorted opinion of men
and fathers.

>
>>
>>The younger the children are when brainwashed, the less the chances of
>>that happening. But for many men, caught up with the false
>>accusations of older children, teenagers and young adults, the
>>situation has much more hope. Those accusers are far more likely to
>>retract - often when they come out from the influence of those that
>>have "assisted" them to recover their stories of abuse - almost always
>>there are counsellors involved.
>
>Sadly, many of those counselors actually believed in what they were
>doing. I was involved in the field around the time of the Ellis case
>and I remember the *belief* system as being very rigid. Men 'did these
>sorts of things' and 'a child should always be believed' and if a
>woman was found to have made a false accusation then 'there must have
>been some type of abuse that she was still covering up' or 'something
>must have happened to her'.

The problem of false accusations is now much smaller - so the army of
counsellors who then actually believed what they were doing has
largely disappeared.

But I was dismayed to find that the rhetoric has not changed at
source. At a public meeting, hosted by Parentline a couple of months
ago, the same old rhetoric was being presented, in the same way that
you report things happened 10 years ago..

Organisations like Parentline/DSAC etc are dangerous.

They undoubtably do good work when they find children who have truly
been abused (and sadly the size of that task is far too big) - but
they have no ability or skills - or even motivation to get the skills
- to distinguish between true and false accusations.

>I was removed for actively questioning these beliefs.....and 'liking
>men too much', amongst other things. :-)

I've said often before that the worthiness of a cause does not justify
harm done in the name of that (worthy) cause. At the time, anybody
who questioned the process was seen to be part of the problem.

But is that any different from Salem in 1692, or the McCarthy years in
the early 50s?

Brian

Kerry

unread,
Aug 17, 2003, 8:55:46 PM8/17/03
to
On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 08:32:23 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:

>Organisations like Parentline/DSAC etc are dangerous.

Why?

Brian

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 2:29:15 AM8/18/03
to
On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 00:55:46 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
(Kerry) wrote:

>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 08:32:23 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>
>>Organisations like Parentline/DSAC etc are dangerous.
>
>Why?


The answer was in the following paragraph that you snipped.

But you may prefer an analogy. A brain surgeon would be an extremely
dangerous person if he were given the job of diagnosing and carrying
out surgery for your heart problem - and he insisted on carrying out
his surgery in your head.

I'd rather prefer a surgeon who recognised the possibility of heart
disease.


Brian

Joe

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 7:50:39 AM8/18/03
to
On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 11:58:51 -0700, Karen Hayward-King
<kiwi...@yellowsub.net> wrote:

Thank you for this exposure that others experienced Karen.
Cheers *

Kerry

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 7:15:27 AM8/18/03
to

Which DSAC do you mean?

Kerry

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 7:17:33 AM8/18/03
to

I'd like some specifics, not opinion, on why Doctors for Sexual Abuse
Care and Parentline are dangerous

Joe

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 8:41:29 AM8/18/03
to
On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 11:17:33 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
(Kerry) wrote:

>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 18:29:15 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>
>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 00:55:46 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
>>(Kerry) wrote:
>>
>>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 08:32:23 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>>>
>>>>Organisations like Parentline/DSAC etc are dangerous.
>>>
>>>Why?
>>
>>
>>The answer was in the following paragraph that you snipped.
>>
>>But you may prefer an analogy. A brain surgeon would be an extremely
>>dangerous person if he were given the job of diagnosing and carrying
>>out surgery for your heart problem - and he insisted on carrying out
>>his surgery in your head.
>>
>>I'd rather prefer a surgeon who recognised the possibility of heart
>>disease.
>>
>>
>
>I'd like some specifics, not opinion, on why Doctors for Sexual Abuse
>Care and Parentline are dangerous
>

Because they are unwilling to hold an open forum to back up their
beliefs and practices perhaps is one reason.
Ignorance or stubborness can be very dangerous characteristics when
leading people through life.
Felicity Goodyear-Smith is one person that is qualified to make the
warning of the practises, actions and opinions of DSAC can and are
dangerous.
Parentline certainly has its victims who can testify that they are
dangerous.
Experience is specific.
Cheers *

Kerry

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 7:47:11 AM8/18/03
to
On Tue, 19 Aug 2003 00:41:29 +1200, Joe <JoeB...@Home.nz> wrote:

>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 11:17:33 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
>(Kerry) wrote:
>
>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 18:29:15 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>>
>>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 00:55:46 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
>>>(Kerry) wrote:
>>>
>>>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 08:32:23 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>>Organisations like Parentline/DSAC etc are dangerous.
>>>>
>>>>Why?

>>I'd like some specifics, not opinion, on why Doctors for Sexual Abuse


>>Care and Parentline are dangerous
>>
>Because they are unwilling to hold an open forum to back up their
>beliefs and practices perhaps is one reason.

DSAC?

What forum are you talking about? What are the specifics of their
'refusing to hold a forum'?

>Ignorance or stubborness can be very dangerous characteristics when
>leading people through life.
>Felicity Goodyear-Smith is one person that is qualified to make the
>warning of the practises, actions and opinions of DSAC can and are
>dangerous.

Why?

What are the facts?

Do you know what DSAC is and do you know what they do?

Are you parroting something you know nothing about, or are there
actual facts lurking here?


>Parentline certainly has its victims who can testify that they are
>dangerous.

Facts man, the facts

Brian

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 5:23:24 PM8/18/03
to
On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 11:15:27 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
(Kerry) wrote:

>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 18:29:15 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>
>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 00:55:46 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
>>(Kerry) wrote:
>>
>>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 08:32:23 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>>>
>>>>Organisations like Parentline/DSAC etc are dangerous.
>>>
>>>Why?
>>
>>
>>The answer was in the following paragraph that you snipped.
>>
>>But you may prefer an analogy. A brain surgeon would be an extremely
>>dangerous person if he were given the job of diagnosing and carrying
>>out surgery for your heart problem - and he insisted on carrying out
>>his surgery in your head.
>>
>>I'd rather prefer a surgeon who recognised the possibility of heart
>>disease.
>>
>>
>>Brian
>
>Which DSAC do you mean?

The same one that you've referred to in your second reply to my post.

Brian

Brian

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 5:35:37 PM8/18/03
to
On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 11:17:33 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
(Kerry) wrote:

>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 18:29:15 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>
>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 00:55:46 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
>>(Kerry) wrote:
>>
>>>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 08:32:23 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:
>>>
>>>>Organisations like Parentline/DSAC etc are dangerous.
>>>
>>>Why?
>>
>>
>>The answer was in the following paragraph that you snipped.
>>
>>But you may prefer an analogy. A brain surgeon would be an extremely
>>dangerous person if he were given the job of diagnosing and carrying
>>out surgery for your heart problem - and he insisted on carrying out
>>his surgery in your head.
>>
>>I'd rather prefer a surgeon who recognised the possibility of heart
>>disease.
>>
>>
>
>I'd like some specifics, not opinion, on why Doctors for Sexual Abuse
>Care and Parentline are dangerous


Number 3.

Any organisation that supposedly cares about sex abuse and shows no
appreciation or understanding of false sex abuse accusations - or even
cares about the subject, is dangerous.

If you have any evidence that either organisation has EVER said
anything sensible about the subject, I'll be pleased to see it.

Quality assurance, it's called.


Brian.

Kerry

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 6:27:51 PM8/18/03
to
On Tue, 19 Aug 2003 09:35:37 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:

>On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 11:17:33 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
>(Kerry) wrote:
>

>>I'd like some specifics, not opinion, on why Doctors for Sexual Abuse
>>Care and Parentline are dangerous
>
>
>Number 3.
>
>Any organisation that supposedly cares about sex abuse and shows no
>appreciation or understanding of false sex abuse accusations - or even
>cares about the subject, is dangerous.
>

That's an opinion

>If you have any evidence that either organisation has EVER said
>anything sensible about the subject, I'll be pleased to see it.
>
>Quality assurance, it's called.
>


You're nuts

DSAC is the organisation that provides *medical*care to the victims of
child sexual abuse.

They have no brief to comment on alleged false allegations and
convictions of child sexual abuse, any more than they need to comment
on the quality of chesses in Woolworths deli

You subscribe to their literature? You go to their meetings? You
KNOW this how?

Brian calling an organisation dangerous for something it doesn't do,
soemthing it is not required to do, is more than a little ....extreme

JJ Williams

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 7:02:26 PM8/18/03
to

"Kerry" <ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz> wrote in message
news:3f4151c3...@news.wlg.ihug.co.nz...

> They have no brief to comment on alleged false allegations and
> convictions of child sexual abuse, any more than they need to comment
> on the quality of chesses in Woolworths deli

But one instinctively feels that the quality of chess played in Woolworths
deli would not be of the very highest.

J


Kerry

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 7:08:03 PM8/18/03
to

Hahahaha

Joe

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 11:12:41 PM8/18/03
to

Omision to ensure the truth is revealed is just as much a crime as
concealing the truth.
*

Joe

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 11:17:08 PM8/18/03
to

A man with a conviction is a hard man to change.
Tell him you disagree and he turns away.
Show him facts or figures and he questions your sources.
Appeal to logic and he fails to see your point.
We have all experienced the futility of trying to change a strong
conviction, especially if the convinced person has some investment in
his belief.
We are familiar with the variety of ingenious defenses with which
people protect their convictions, managing to keep them unscathed
through the most devastating attacks.

Michael A. Simpson,
"Gullible's Travels, or the importance of being multiple"
Dissociative Identity Disorder:
Theoretical and Treatment Controversies
(Editors: Cohen, Berzoff & Elin), Jason Aronson

JJ Williams

unread,
Aug 18, 2003, 10:15:58 PM8/18/03
to

"Joe" <JoeB...@Home.nz> wrote in message
news:e953kvsnfspk9mfir...@4ax.com...

So they DO have to sort out the cheese situation at Woollies?

J


Brian

unread,
Aug 19, 2003, 5:48:33 AM8/19/03
to
On Mon, 18 Aug 2003 22:27:51 GMT, ker...@remove.this.bit.ihug.co.nz
(Kerry) wrote:


>On Tue, 19 Aug 2003 09:35:37 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:

>>>I'd like some specifics, not opinion, on why Doctors for Sexual Abuse
>>>Care and Parentline are dangerous

>>Number 3.
>>Any organisation that supposedly cares about sex abuse and shows no
>>appreciation or understanding of false sex abuse accusations - or even
>>cares about the subject, is dangerous.

>That's an opinion

Certainly. But certainly a contestable opinion. But I wager it'll
be a cold night in hell before anybody is able to contest it with
evidence otherwise. I'll welcome being wrong.


>>If you have any evidence that either organisation has EVER said
>>anything sensible about the subject, I'll be pleased to see it.

>>Quality assurance, it's called.

>You're nuts

Thank you.

>DSAC is the organisation that provides *medical*care to the victims of
>child sexual abuse.
>
>They have no brief to comment on alleged false allegations and
>convictions of child sexual abuse, any more than they need to comment
>on the quality of chesses in Woolworths deli

The credibility of DSAC fell to rock bottom when they cancelled the
honorary membership that Felicity Goodyear-Smith had previously been
awarded. This was "providing *medical care*? I think that action
by itself shows where the organisation sits - firmly as a group of
true believers.

DSAC have been responsible for bringing out a succession of American
"experts" to preach - of the same ilk that helped cause the Ellis
fiasco. This was "providing *medical care*?

I did not claim that they had a "brief to comment on alleged false
allegations and convictions of child sexual abuse". Those are your
words and your claims.

But I do expect that an organisation where members are called upon to
provide care to victims of sexual abuse should be able to consider
that what they are dealing with, may not actually be sexual abuse.

A Brain surgeon may be very skilled at brain surgery, but I'm sure
that I do not extend my willingness for such a surgeon to carry out
brain surgery on a patient with heart disease.

>Brian calling an organisation dangerous for something it doesn't do,
>soemthing it is not required to do, is more than a little ....extreme

The organisation is dangerous for precisely what it does NOT do. I
make no apologies for saying so.

Brian

Hugh Young

unread,
Aug 19, 2003, 5:21:23 AM8/19/03
to
On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 19:32:06 +1200, "Dersu" <de...@paradise.net.nz>
said:

>
>"Fred" <fre...@nevermind.net> wrote in message


>
> Most of all, it's about
>> memories - memories they've been struggling to make sense of since
>> they were little.
>

>Of course the poor kids have been "struggling to make sense" of memories
>that were implanted by sick and delusional people who were uncaring of the
>catastrophic effect their brainwashing might have on little children. One
>can only hope these kids will have the guts to put this wicked abuse by
>their parents and social workers behind them and get on with their lives.
>They will be fools to themselves if they allow the culture of victimhood to
>blight their lives. They are, after all, alive and physically undamaged and
>the world is waiting for them.

Not only that, but Peter Ellis spent years in gaol for what they said
he did to them. No-one can ever take that away from them. If he were
now exonerated, how would they be harmed?

It seems to me that if their stories were true, they would not want to
come back into the limelight to have it all thrashed out again. But if
their "memories" are in fact false, then they need all the
reinforcement they can get.

Joe

unread,
Aug 20, 2003, 3:36:08 AM8/20/03
to
On Tue, 19 Aug 2003 21:48:33 +1200, Brian <bri...@wave.co.nz> wrote:

>>DSAC is the organisation that provides *medical*care to the victims of
>>child sexual abuse.
>>
>>They have no brief to comment on alleged false allegations and
>>convictions of child sexual abuse, any more than they need to comment
>>on the quality of chesses in Woolworths deli
>
>The credibility of DSAC fell to rock bottom when they cancelled the
>honorary membership that Felicity Goodyear-Smith had previously been
>awarded. This was "providing *medical care*? I think that action
>by itself shows where the organisation sits - firmly as a group of
>true believers.
>
>DSAC have been responsible for bringing out a succession of American
>"experts" to preach - of the same ilk that helped cause the Ellis
>fiasco. This was "providing *medical care*?
>

>The organisation is dangerous for precisely what it does NOT do. I
>make no apologies for saying so.
>
>Brian

Controversy over visit of Prof Elizabeth Loftus to address the NZ
Psychological Society’s Annual Conference, August 2000.
Interview : 09:05am, August 7th, 2000: Radio New Zealand.
Kim Hill Interviews Dr John Read and Murray Hahn.
John Read - lecturer of psychology Auckland University·
Murray Hahn - chair of psychological board organising committee·
Controversy over visit of Elizabeth Loftus.
KIM HILL
(Elizabeth Loftus) is a world authority on the memory capabilities of
children and in fact she was one of the first to question the belief
of child abuse therapists and counsellors that adults could recover
memories of sexual abuse inflicted on them at a very young age. Now,
she’s been invited to address the NZ Psychological Society’s annual
conference. Dr John Read is a senior lecturer at Auckland
University’s psychological department and he has resigned from the
psychological society in protest at it’s refusal to revoke it’s
invitation to Professor Loftus to speak at the conference. In a
moment I’ll talk to Dr Read and also to Murray Hahn, who is
chairperson of the conference organising committee. Dr Read however
joins me now. Good Morning.
JOHN READ
Good Morning Kim
KIM HILL
Let’s start off by your resignation. Is it a fact that you’ve
resigned in protest at the Society’s refusal to take back it’s
invitation to Professor Loftus?
JOHN READ
Well first off, I haven’t resigned from the society. I’ve resigned
merely from the role of the Director of Scientific affairs
KIM HILL
Yes
JOHN READ
Yes, that is directly related to the decision to invite Elizabeth
Loftus and the important thing here is that the last thing NZ needs at
the moment as it is grappling with a horrific stories of abuse sexual
and physical that we’ve been confronted with over the last few weeks
is a leading member of that movement which minimises abuse - Which
says that it isn’t happening at the extent to which it is - That says
that children make it up.- That’s not exactly going to move us forward
in our moment of national crisis. And, I’ve got no problem with her
coming and speaking. It was the prominence to which we were going to
give her - to have her be a keynote speaker and not to have anyone
representing the children who have been abused and those who work with
them to put the opposite side. Something we did propose to the
conference committee. That’s their right to decide that. I do
believe in academic freedom. I also believe that there are some issues
where you have to take a stand and this is an issue I’m fully prepared
to take a stand. My concern is the thousands of children who are
being abused in New Zealand and the hundreds of mental health
professionals, social workers, psychiatrists, psychologists, who work
with them who are constantly being belittled by the False Memory
Syndrome brigade of whom Loftus is a leading member.
KIM HILL
I don’t think that Professor Loftus has ever denied that child abuse
takes place, however, has she?
JOHN READ
She hasn’t said it takes place, but by arguing consistently in the
court that children make up child abuse on a massive scale hardly
makes it easy for people to either disclose abuse for fear of being
disbelieved, nor does it make it easy for people whose job it is such
as GP’s and mental health professionals and social workers to ask
properly about abuse. People are being scared off at the moment by
this sort of propaganda from asking about abuse. Our research shows
that the more professionals believe that false allegations are
rampant, which they are not, the less likely they are to ask. So we
now have a situation where people whose job it is to find out whether
their clients and patients have been abused are scared to do so
because of the very effective and powerful propaganda of this
organisation.
KIM HILL
However, her main interest of course and her main speciality focusses
on the recovered memory syndrome so called - Not whether children make
it up or don’t make it up but whether years and years and years later
people can, under therapy, recover a memory of child abuse and that
leads to court cases of course as we’ve seen in the United States
primarily
JOHN READ
Precisely, and that’s where she’s doing the damage. Of course people
can forget about their abuse. It’s such a painful thing that people
regularly, and research documents this quite clearly. People who have
been abused regularly have periods of their lives where they forget
about the abuse. It’s adaptive and functional to forget about such
horrific things happening to you and if years later when somebody asks
you about it you manage to remember it , I think that’s a good thing,
and it happens frequently, and the idea that there is no such thing as
repressed memory is absolute scientific nonsense.
KIM HILL
You have, according to reports, been offered an hour after Professor
Loftus’s speech for a forum to comment. In other words there may be
some vibrant discussion no doubt, some kind of rebuttal, whatever. Is
that not sufficient?
JOHN READ
The many many people who were opposed to Loftus being a keynote
speaker, and I stress we have no problem with her being just an
ordinary speaker, but the prominence being given to her that we
objected to … did not feel that it was appropriate for us to debate on
her territory around her research. We want time to raise the real
issues which is about the underfunding of child abuse police teams,
the underfunding of CYPS, the need for more training for psychologists
to know how to ask about abuse. The sorts of things that I spend my
time doing, training mental health professionals. I don’t want to
spend my time actually debating Loftus’s research which is actually
irrelevant to the issue of abuse. It’s analogue research which means
it’s research several times removed from the real situation. It has
to be because it is unethical to actually produce trauma in children
or adults and then see what they can remember
KIM HILL
Of course that highlights the difficulty, that highlights the
difficulty of finding out …
JOHN READ
Absolutely
KIM HILL
.... the truth of whatever, doesn’t it?
JOHN READ
No, it highlights the difficulty of researching, of demonstrating the
claim made by the false memory syndrome people that people never
repress their memories of abuse. You can’t research that ethically
and Loftus hasn’t done, yet she stands up in Court on a regular basis
in the United States, makes a huge living out of doing so - out of
discrediting people who have been abused. In fact when several people
complained, several abuse survivors complained to her professional
organisation, the American Psychological Association about what she
was doing and how she was misrepresenting them, she rather than face
those complaints, she resigned from her professional organisation.
Now in NZ that is not acceptable practice. If there are complaints
made against you must stand and face them. You cannot resign because
you are being accused of unethical practice. You must stand and face
them Loftus chose not to do that.
KIM HILL
You have no objection to her speaking. You just don’t want her to be
a keynote speaker.
JOHN READ
I don’t want her to be a keynote speaker
KIM HILL
In effect what is the difference?
JOHN READ
There is a huge difference because she is a very skilled propagandist
and she and her few supporters here in New Zealand will take the fact
that she is a keynote speaker at our conference and use that to add
credibility to the cause
KIM HILL
So she can get up and deliver the same speech, but if she’s not called
a keynote speaker, then that’s OK?
JOHN READ

Well the issues around the conference are not the real issues. The
issues are the damage that Loftus and her brigade will do
KIM HILL
No, I understand that and I think
JOHN READ
But that’s what I want to talk about. It’s not my dispute with NZPS
They have done an awful lot and will continue to do an awful lot for
abused children and for those who work with them
KIM HILL
I understand that. I’m trying to explore the interesting dilemma
really in your position, in that you don’t object to her coming and
you don’t object to her speaking
JOHN READ
Oh, I’d much rather she stayed in America. She’s doing enough damage
over there. We don’t actually need … New Zealand is in a crisis over
abuse. We are trying to deal with find some proper solutions to reduce
the amount of murders of children and and sexual abuse of children,
and we’ve got a lot of moral outrage at the moment. All the newspaper
editors are saying the right things. The politicians are saying the
right things. We need to move on from that and find some actual
positive solutions. To have Loftus arrive and stir up all this
nonsense about people don’t repress their memories and counsellors and
psychologists are planting these memories is not going to help us. I
mean, we have enough to do without sitting around persuading people
that they’ve been abused. We are dealing with genuine abuse cases in
their thousands and the public is asked to believe that we’re actually
creating more abuse. It’s just nonsense. Just to make one point in
NZ you have to have disclosed abuse to somebody else before you gain
access to an ACC counsellor. Do you understand the point I’m
making?
KIM HILL
Yes I do
JOHN READ
Because they are claiming that all this abuse is merely the
fabrication that comes about from counsellors and psychologists
telling their clients that they’ve been abused. You can’t get access
to an abuse counsellor in New Zealand until you’ve disclosed to
somebody else
KIM HILL
Look, I can understand why you think that it’s kind of unwise, or off
the game if you like to invite her to talk, because the issue in New
Zealand at the moment is not the issue of recovered memory. The issue
in New Zealand at the moment is the very real maiming and killing of
children, about which there can be no debate. All right?
JOHN READ
It’s the same issue. Every time someone who stands up as an adult
and says these horrific things happened to me as a child and then they
are discredited by lawyers. It’s their job to do that. I respect the
lawyers who stand up and do that It is the psychologists who are
providing pseudo research to support the discrediting of people who
are trying …. it is a very brave thing to do to go to Court, to take
an abuse case to court, and when you get there and you are faced with
so-called experts saying that you’re making it up, or your counsellor
told you that it happened. I find that distasteful. I find it really
painful, because my job, and the job of all the people who have
protested against Loftus, and there is many of us, Our job is trying
to make it safe for people to disclose abuse, to get them to where
they can get some help. It is the same issue, Kim, because every time
a genuine abuse victim is discredited in the press or in Court and
made out to look like they’ve made it up or were so stupid that
they’ve let a counsellor convince them that they’ve been abused. That
moves us backwards into the dark ages again where no one wants to talk
about abuse. No one will disclose abuse for fear of being disbelieved.
KIM HILL
Does the very painful, does the very undoubtedly painful reality of
child abuse mean that it has to be treated in a way that is quite
different from the normal robust academic debate?
JOHN READ
No absolutely not I’m now talking to you. I’m having that debate
with you, and this debate will go on while Loftus is here. I will be
at the forefront of that, and so will many other people. Abuse
survivors will be speaking out. People who work with abuse survivors
will be speaking out. The debate is on.
KIM HILL
But the debate is on in a way in which you have already demonised one
of the leading proponents of somebody of a case that’s happens to be
at odds with what you believe.
JOHN READ
How have I demonised her?
KIM HILL
Well, for heavens sake,
JOHN READ
I disagree
KIM HILL
You’ve just spent the last ten minutes calling her unprofessional to
say the least.
JOHN READ
I have reported some facts about her not being willing to face
complaints to her professional organisation. Yes, all right if that’s
demonising her, then that’s demonising her.
KIM HILL
And given the very very politicised nature of this debate
JOHN READ
Yep,
KIM HILL
It’s unexpected It’s not natural to expect her to deal with those
kind of complaints in anything other than the way she’s done, is it?
I mean she’s been demonised here, She’s been demonised in the United
States. She for her part may well have demonised other people. This is
the state of the debate. But it’s not freedom of expression, and it’s
not an academic rigour is it?
JOHN READ
Why isn’t it freedom of expression?
KIM HILL
Because you are saying this woman is causing damage to something I
believe in. Therefore she is wrong. Aren’t you?
JOHN READ
No, I’m saying she is wrong because her research doesn’t relate to the
issues. It’s pseudo research in terms of whether it’s actually
relevant to whether people can remember whether they can repress or
forget their abuse memories, and I am saying that the backlash. Look
it was 25 years ago when, only 25 years ago when leading psychiatric
textbooks said that the incidence of incest was one per million. We
have clawed our way forward with some excellent New Zealand research
for instance showing that the rate of sexual abuse of women in New
Zealand as children sits around the 20-30% mark. We have clawed our
way forward. We have a backlash
KIM HILL
Isn’t that still arguable though, Dr Read. Those statistics are still
in debate.
JOHN READ
No, we have research from all over the world producing that sort of
incidence, and I do understand that it is very very hard for people to
take that in. It is such a painful thing to take in. It’s as painful
as taking in what we’ve seen over the last two weeks in our newspapers
and people understandably will cling onto anything that will help them
believe that we are not treating our children so badly. One of the
things that people wish to cling onto is the sort of propaganda that
is produced by those people who wish to, for whatever reason personal,
political or whatever, wish to minimise the extent of abuse and we
cannot afford to do that in New Zealand at the moment. We now have a
momentum. For the most horrible of reasons we now have a momentum
where people are all together as a nation facing in the right
direction. What we’re looking for is some answers as to what to do
about that rather than to go backwards into a debate about whether
people are having these ideas of abuse planted in their heads by
counsellors and so forth. I mean when this little kid that we just
heard on the news a few minutes ago in thirty years time tells someone
about what happened to them, someones going to stand up and say “Oh
well your counsellor just convinced you that happened” and I find
that very sad, Kim. I really find it sad and I am comfortable taking a
stand on those sorts of things.
KIM HILL
What little kid? No but hang on Dr Read. What little kid are you
referring to?
JOHN READ
On the news just a while ago
KIM HILL
Hine?
JOHN READ
About the
KIM HILL
Well its going to be extremely unlikely that that child is going to be
able to be contradicted by anybody. That’s not what we’re talking
about.
JOHN READ
That’s a very rare case when it gets that amount of publicity. There
are hundreds of children where that’s happening to them right now
around New Zealand where it will be covered up in silence in all our
communities, not just Maori. In all our communities and then later on
somebody might ask that child why they are in such a bad state as a 20
or 30 year old. And that person might then remember. People do, you
have to to survive. Many people do put behind them literally put into
their unconscious. Bury those very painful memories.
KIM HILL
Look, I absolutely understand.
JOHN READ
So many people ask them later what’s going on, and I think it’s a
shame that’s so often discredited. That’s all I’m saying
KIM HILL
I absolutely understand what you’re saying. However, and I don’t want
you to be offended by this, but it’s the only comparison I can grab at
short notice. What makes you think that you are different from the
Spanish Inquisition at the time of Galileo?
JOHN READ
Oh, Kim
KIM HILL
No listen. Listen. Galileo for all they knew was telling the truth,
but the truth was going to be more damaging and so it was necessary to
get rid of it. Now I’m not suggesting that kind of extremity, but you
know what I mean
JOHN READ
I know. I know what you mean. It is a fair point. People do get very
heated over this issue, myself included. When you have sat and
listened to hundreds of people as adults tell you about what happened
to them as a child, and then tell you that nobody has ever asked them
about that for years, they’ve had no support for years and they are
terrified of going to court because somebody is going to stand up and
accuse them of lying, of making it up. Of course you couldn’t have
forgotten it for all that time, could you? They’re going to lose the
case. They’re going to be retraumatised. It is, It is an extremely
sad situation. And yes I think that when people bring over these
so-called experts from America, to promulgate that position, I think
that sets us back, and I and all the other people who have protested
about it are quite happy to stand up and say so.
KIM HILL
And what’s going to happen when she arrives?
JOHN READ
She’s going to say what she has to say.
KIM HILL
And is there going to be a protest? Are you going to turn your back?
JOHN READ
I shant be there
KIM HILL
You wont be there?
JOHN READ
No. I shall be going down two days later to present my research about
the link between child abuse and psychosis and schizophrenia.
KIM HILL
Right. So you don’t even want to hear what she says?
JOHN READ
I know what she says. I’ve read what she says. I don’t want to hear
it again.
KIM HILL
And so you will deliberately boycott her presentation?
JOHN READ
No. I wasn’t planning going that day in the first place.
KIM HILL
All Right. Murray Hahn is also with us. He is chairperson of the
conference organising committee. Morning, Mr Hahn

MURRAY HAHN
Good morning Kim.
KIM HILL
Was it inept? Was it inappropriate? Was it deliberately provocative to
invite Elizabeth Loftus to come and give a keynote address here?
MURRAY HAHN
It was none of those things, Kim
KIM HILL
What were you thinking of then?
MURRAY HAHN
Um, well, personally and the committee was.. we were unaware of this
controversy that was actually raging
KIM HILL
You were unaware! Hello! You were unaware that Elizabeth Loftus was a
controversial figure?
MURRAY HAHN
We knew that there was some controversy. We didn’t know about the sort
of strength there of feeling that some members of the society had.
KIM HILL
Good Lord! I mean she is controversial wherever she goes. She is an
absolutely lightening rod figure in the world of psychology!
MURRAY HAHN
Well, I think there are people who see differences but she has
research that she has undertaken that is significant. She has had
awards for that research. Seems appropriate that someone who has those
sorts of views should be allowed to voice them and I wasn’t aware
that we should not have people speaking because they are
controversial, or people disagree with those particular views.
KIM HILL
How many of you were on the committee who decided that she should be
invited not only to speak but to be keynote speaker?
MURRAY HAHN
Oh, hang on, I’d have to count up, but there is about eight of us
KIM HILL
And it was a unanimous decision?
MURRAY HAHN
It was unanimous, and it was also discussed with the President of the
Society who thought that it was an appropriate action to take.
KIM HILL
Now, Dr Read has argued eloquently that at a time in New Zealand where
we are grappling with the very real incidence of child abuse, the very
real dreadful injuries that are carried out on our children by the,
you know, close families it is inappropriate to say the least to
invite somebody like Elizabeth Loftus over to take a position which
risks diluting concern about child abuse.
MURRAY HAHN
Well, first of all, Kim, Elizabeth Loftus has come into the country
before and anyway and it was an offer made to us about her to come and
speak, which we took up
KIM HILL
She was coming to the country anyway?
MURRAY HAHN
She was coming to the country anyway…
KIM HILL
Ok
MURRAY HAHN
… to meet with colleagues of hers in Victoria and Otago Universities,
so we didn’t invite her. She was there. We took the opportunity to
have someone who was in the country to provide what we thought was a
talk on the research, not on the controversy.
KIM HILL
How many keynote speakers have you got?
MURRAY HAHN
We’ve got six keynote speakers.
KIM HILL
And, so, she is not the keynote speaker, she is a keynote speaker.
MURRAY HAHN
She is one keynote speaker, Kim
KIM HILL
Do you accept that, if you didn’t make her a keynote speaker, you just
made her another speaker, and lowered her status, you may be able to
defuse an argument without impinging on academic freedom?
MURRAY HAHN
Um..
KIM HILL
Or is this now a matter of principle for you?
MURRAY HAHN
I don’t think it is a matter of principle. I mean, we made an
invitation to go and speak. Whether she was called a keynote speaker
or did a speech in another position I think people would still have
the same objections. We made an invitation. We don’t see that is
appropriate to withdraw that invitation. It sort of, it then starts
sort of smacking of censorship, I would have thought, in terms of
taking away, I guess, the status of the speech.
KIM HILL
Well, censorship law is an interesting issue. Ok. If we accept what Dr
Read has said. Then perhaps some things ought to be, lets choose a
word other than censored, given less prominence - not taken notice
of...
MURRAY HAHN
Well, maybe. But the committee’s view and certainly mine, was that
whether we had her as a keynote speaker, or just as another speaker,
she would have still attracted some controversy, because there are
people who position and who make others sort of feel differently and
we’ve had other speakers talk to the conference who have had views
that have been quite different to Dr Loftus’s and views that other
people haven’t agreed with. I mean, it is one of the parts of, I
guess, academic freedom is that people have an opportunity to express
things, and that they should actually be able to be heard.
KIM HILL
Is there any kind of forum at the conference for Professor Loftus to
debate with people who do actually support the concept of recovered
memories?
MURRAY HAHN
No. There is no forum. We had offered a forum. It was decided .. the
people who we were trying to provide this sort of opportunity chose
not to have that particular forum.
KIM HILL
You are referring to the offer to Dr Read of a full hour after
Professor Loftus’ speech for a forum to comment?
MURRAY HAHN
That’s right. We thought that might give that particular group of
people, and those of us who sort of sit somewhere in between, who have
no fixed view an opportunity to hear both sides.
KIM HILL
The problem, is of course, is that this is not science. It’s politics,
right?
MURRAY HAHN
I think that’s a good way to put it, and I suspect that some of this
is about politics, yes..
KIM HILL
Well, you knew that Professor Loftus was a political figure, when you
invited her to give the keynote speech.
MURRAY HAHN
I found out afterwards, she was a political figure, yes.
KIM HILL
I can’t believe.
JOHN READ
Can I chip in there, Kim?
KIM HILL
Yes.
JOHN READ
Because I fully accept Murray’s position on it and the position of the
committee and I fully believe that they genuinely weren’t aware of
extent of politics around that issue, and it was only afterwards that
we raised the concerns that none of us were actually in the picture at
that point. So I’ve got no beef with the NZPS as an organisation.
Murray’s got a difficult job. He’s had people blasting his ear from
both sides and they’ve taken the position that they don’t want to go
down the line of anything that could look like censorship.
KIM HILL
Which you can understand.
JOHN READ
I’m saying, I fully accept that.
KIM HILL
Ok
JOHN READ
I will, in my slot at the conference deal with the issues in the way
that I choose to. Loftus will have a chance to do that in her
session, and so be it. That’s ok. All I want to is stay focussed on
the issues of child abuse, and under resourcing of child abuse
services.
KIM HILL
All Right.
JOHN READ
And I think Murray and his committee have made a decision, and that’s
the end of that, now we’ve to get on and try and do something about
child abuse.
KIM HILL
It doesn’t leave the public with very much to go on now though does
it? Because we are talking about politics. We’re not talking about
science.
JOHN READ
I’m afraid it is somewhat naïve to believe that science exists
somewhere separate from politics. Science is not some sort of pure
objective thing that happens in a vacuum. The issues that scientists
deal with certainly in our field of psychology, and clinical
psychology and child abuse are full of politics, and I don’t see how
it could be any other way. It’s a very emotive issue. Child abuse
always will be an emotive issue. I hope it’s always an emotive issue.
People do take sides on it. There are people who do wish to minimise
it. I think that’s a political position, and we have to try and bring
our scientific research to bear on those issues. But you can never
separate out science from politics.
KIM HILL
Because it’s such an emotive issue, however, do you accept that some
times people end up being convicted of things that they did not do,
because nobody is prepared to stand up, as for example Elizabeth
Loftus has stood out in the United States, and say hang on a minute,
What is the evidence for this?
JOHN READ
Yes, I do believe that happens, and I think that’s absolutely tragic
and devastating for the individuals and to the families when that
happens. For every one case where that happens, there are probably
several hundred cases of genuine abuse that never get reported to
anybody, and of those few that get to court, I mean it’s so tiny the
number that actually get to court. So yes, there are false, there are
are false allegations of everything, burglaries, rape, you name it,
and it’s tragic when that happens. What I object to, is people
taking those individual tragic cases, and using them to claim that
there are many many other cases like this where in fact it’s genuine
abuse. So it’s hundred times greater the number of genuine cases of
abuse that are not getting dealt with at all, because there are
practically no child abuse police teams in this country, because CYPS
is so massively underfunded. So I wouldn’t for a second take away the
awfulness of when somebody makes a false allegation. If there are
professionals that are asking about abuse in an unprofessional,
leading and repetitive way that’s equally unforgivable. We haven’t any
evidence of that in New Zealand but it does happen occasionally in
America. When it happens it’s seized upon, by the media, and Loftus
and her crew make sure it’s seized upon.. That’s their job. That’s
their job. They do it well, and they will do it well while they are in
New Zealand. Our job, those of us who are genuinely concerned about
child abuse and the people who work with them, who are constantly
denigrated and called the sexual abuse industry and so forth - Our
job is to stand up to those people and to keep it in perspective. To
point out for every case of false allegation there are hundreds of
genuine cases of abuse that are not being reported to anybody
KIM HILL
It’s nice to talk to you. Perhaps we’ll speak again closer to the
time. Dr John Read of Auckland University, and Murray Hahn who is
chairperson of the conference organising committee. The conference in
question of course is the Psychological Society’s Annual conference
later this month. And I can tell you that we’ll be talking to
Professor Loftus on August 29th.

Kim Hill certainly had trouble at believing Read was being honest with