LIGHTED CANDLE SOCIETY NEWSLETTER

AUGUST 2006

 

By JOHN L. HARMER

 

In Salt Lake City during the last week of July the murder of a five year old girl named Destiny Norton was front page news.  As details of the sordid crime became public, including the fact that after he had murdered Destiny the culprit admitted that he had raped her dead body, expressions of sympathy and condolence to her family poured forth from throughout the state.  Her funeral was widely reported by the media. 

 

Within forty-eight hours the memory of Destiny and the unspeakable horror that filled the last few minutes of her life began to fade.  A month after her murder few people will be able to remember her name.  A year after her murder almost no one will remember the event.  This casualness by which our society reacts to the ongoing process of children being kidnapped, raped, and then murdered is one of the many incomprehensible factors in our culture today.

 

The murder and then post death rape of Destiny is a repeat of a sadomasochistic fantasy that appears frequently in pornographic materials.  Police investigators have reported on thousands of actual cases in which a child, young girl or boy, teenager, or adult woman has been kidnapped, sexually tortured, and then ultimately murdered.  In almost every single one of these situations a search of the culprit’s living space has revealed the presence of pornography in which the same crime was detailed. 

 

We will likely learn that Destiny Norton’s fate was a re-enactment by the culprit of some deranged obscene fantasy found so often in the more extreme forms of pornography.  If that proves to be the case, Destiny’s death will be one more statistic confirming that the repeated visual and mental consumption by the pornography addict ultimately overwhelms any remaining sense of humanity left within him.  The only way that he can re-experience the reality of this sordid fantasy is to actually carry it out.

 

Every week the office of the Lighted Candle Society receives news items documenting the incredible increase in the volume of pedophilia or child pornography.  Recent arrests for pandering in child pornography have included individuals from University Presidents to otherwise “respectable behaving” housewives.  Obviously we applaud every effort stop the production and distribution of pornography using children.  Yet, in this process we can see a mistake of the not too distant past being repeated again.

 

Federal and state law enforcement officials, anxious to appear committed to the cause of decency, have been very aggressive in seeking out and prosecuting those who produce and distribute child pornography.  At the same time these officials have practically abandoned any effort to stem the tide of pornography being produced and distributed for adults.  The existing laws forbidding the production and distribution of pornography are more than adequate.  The problem is that the courts and the public through the influence of the media have been deceived by two totally erroneous assumptions:  first, into accepting our current forms of pornography as “harmless entertainment;” second, that pornography has been made legal and that “…there is nothing that we can do about it.” Because of the prevalence of these two fallacious assumptions there is little discernable demand by the public for their elected officials to deal with this problem.

 

This assumption that adult pornography is an essentially “victimless” crime is tantamount to dancing on the graves of Destiny Norton and the thousands of her fellow victims.  The progression in pornography addiction from sexually titillating slick magazines that can be purchased in any supermarket or news stand to the most extreme forms of hard core pornography has been documented in tens of thousands of instances.  Several very authoritative studies have confirmed that for every obscene magazine or video purchased there are at least two to five individuals in addition to the original purchaser who will read or view it. 

 

Years ago the emergence in cities throughout the country of so called “adult bookstores” took place as a result of laws enacted to protect children from access to pornography.  The implicit legalizing of pornography for adults that these statutes and ordinances created produced a tidal wave of retail outlets for “adults” only.  Now the Congress and state legislatures along with federal and state law enforcement officials are repeating the same tactical error by trumpeting their confrontation of the child pornography network.  In reality they are allowing the production and distribution of pornography in general to go unhampered while they pander to the public through the media about their zeal in pursuing those who engage in the production and sale of child pornography.

 

There are approximately six hundred thousand registered sex offenders in the United States.  The overwhelming majority of them abused children.  For years law enforcement officials have told us that they invariably find pornography associated with the apprehension of a child molester.  Those who have become addicted to this perversion began with the “Playboy” publications or videos, or their copycat impersonators. 

 

It was just over twenty years ago that in the Salt Lake valley small boys aged five to seven began disappearing.  Ultimately the individual responsible for their kidnapping was found.  He was a man named Arthur Gary Bishop.  His pattern had been to seduce these boys into his apartment where he would photograph them in sexually explicit poses.  He would personally perform various acts of sexual perversion upon them.  After anything from a few days to a week of time he would ultimately take their lives as the last most exciting pseudo-sexual assault and battery he would commit upon them.  Then he would bury their bodies in a nearby canyon.

 

In his apartment law enforcement officials found hundreds of items of child pornography.  But Arthur Gary Bishop did not begin his journey into pornography addiction with that type of material.  It began with the slick magazines that he could purchase at a newsstand or obtain through the United States mail.  It escalated from there into the even more deviant forms of pornography which included the ultra-violent sadomasochistic forms of sexual torture.  Finally, the only way he could satisfy the ultimate craving that his addiction had created within him was to literally commit the murder of his victims.

 

Similar to the public reaction to the murder of Destiny Norton, the public outrage over the revelation of Arthur Gary Bishop’s hideous crimes was ballistic.  Yet, within a few short months it was forgotten except by the families of his victims.  Some sporadic legislative efforts to improve the laws regarding obscenity in the state of Utah finally petered out.  All too soon life was back to normal and the producers and distributors of pornography continued unhampered.

 

In addition to the crimes against children such as Destiny Norton, the presence of pornography is a constant factor involved in rape.  There is a clearly demonstrable correlation between the incidence of rape and the presence of pornography in a community.  The Lighted Candle Society is preparing a report for future publication regarding the fact that retail commercial establishments located in the two most populous counties of Utah provide obscene materials much more readily than can be found in many other states.  One of the elements of that report has to do with a comparison of the incidence of rape in Salt Lake City as opposed to other communities of a similar size.

 

Consider the following comparison:

 

CITY:                          Forcible Rape per 100,000                               Murder per 100,000

Salt Lake City                          50.34                                                               8.2

Denver                                     43.11                                                               15.4

St. Louis, Mo.                          33.12                                                               33.7

Phoenix, AZ                             34.29                                                               14.1

Sacramento, CA                       43.29                                                               11.1

 

Among the five cities compared above Salt Lake City is the first in reported incidents of forcible rape but last in murder. There is every reason to assume that the higher incidence of rape in Salt Lake City than in the four cities of similar size and population has to do with the fact that pornography is much more prevalent in Salt Lake City.  Other data which will be made available in that report confirms that there is much greater traffic on the Internet in obscene materials in the greater Salt Lake area than in most communities of a similar size and nature.

 

What is it that makes the greater Salt Lake community so tolerant of the presence of literature, motion pictures, video rentals, video games and similar items that are laced with sexually explicit messages?  Why do the people of this community allow and accept these harbingers of the future rape and murder of little girls and boys?  Why must children who are old enough to read stand in the checkout line at grocery stores and convenience stores with magazine covers right in their faces that have only one message – “glamorized sex!” 

 

Two woman’s magazine currently on sale in stores throughout the Salt lake area had these two titles on their front cover:  “How to Cheat on your Man,” and “Ten Ways to Drive Him Crazy in Bed.”   What is a child nine or ten or older supposed to understand about the values of the world in which they live when this is the message that advertisers and local merchants throw at them in every form of media?  Their parents shop at these stores.  The television shows that are watched in their homes are laced with these messages.  Most of the motion pictures that are patronized in their community begin and end with profanity and the mockery of moral values.  In the midst of this overwhelming blitz of carnality are children to be expected to hear the opposite message when what we endorse by what we do speaks so much louder than what we say?

 

THE MISSION OF THE LIGHTED CANDLE SOCIETY

 

The LIGHTED CANDLE SOCIETY was created to provide leadership in defeating the “Goliath of Hedonism” that has become so prevalent among the American people.  Just as David of the Old Testament used “five smooth stones” as his weapons of choice to defeat the Goliath he faced, the LIGHTED CANDLE SOCIETY gives to its members FIVE SMOOTH STONES by which they can engage in the battle to defeat the Goliath of perversion and death that has arisen out of the darkness of pornography.

 

We know that there are thousands, even tens of thousands, of honorable people in this land who will be willing to SUPPORT THE WORK OF THE LIGHTED CANDLE SOCIETY if they only knew about it.   You can become a modern David in the battle against  the Goliath of our day by arming yourself and using the FIVE SMOOTH STONES of THE LIGHTED CANDLE SOCIETY.

 

We are grateful for the generosity of many donors who understand the mission of the Lighted Candle Society.   For everyone that is doing the most they can to support our work there are thousands who remain either uninformed or passive about making any commitment.   On our web site we have outlined various ways in which anyone, from the most humble to the most opulent, can participate with us in this war we will win. 

We appeal to you to:

 

1.      Make your own personal commitment of personal and financial support to the Lighted Candle Society.

2.      Share this newsletter with as many people as you know who would be willing to join with you in this cause.   If you wish to electronically distribute this newsletter you can either take it off of our web site or contact our office with your e-mail address and we will forward it to you electronically.

3.      Provide to us the names and addresses (or e-mail addresses) of those who you believe would be willing and able to join with you in supporting our cause.

4.      Purchase and distribute to others the materials that have been prepared by the Lighted Candle Society.  You will find these materials described on our web site.

 

WE CAN WIN THIS WAR.   WE WILL WIN THIS WAR WHEN THE THOUSANDS WHO ARE NOW PASSIVE BECOME ENLISTED IN THE CAUSE.