Date: 07 May 93 23:46:52 To: All Subj: Walk Away _ WALK AWAY - During the last year or two

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Date: 07 May 93 23:46:52 From: Fredric Rice To: All Subj: Walk Away ____________________________________________________________________________ WALK AWAY - During the last year or two, several people have expressed an interest in the publication called "Walk Away." There was some speculation that Walk Away was also a deprogramming group which assisted in physically helping victims of cult 'mind control' escape from destructive religions. Not so. To finally put rumors to rest and to provide a reference for further inquiries into the Walk Away publication (in A_Theist and HolySmoke) I wrote a letter to Simon, Porteous, and Assoc., Inc., asking for information on the group and publication offering the hopes that they might call so that an informal telephone interview might be granted. Though I was not granted an interview with the Institute for First Amendment Studies, they very graciously forwarded a great deal of information about the publications "Walk Away" and "Freedom Writer." "Walk Away" is merely a very fine publication which offers either monologues or interviews of people who have "walked away" from destructive religions. Some people express a slow realization of the impossibilities of deity belief whereas others refine the point at which they had realized they simply could not believe. Everyone expressed the nature of their virtual enslavement to their churches, remarking upon the demands that questioning their beliefs is evil. Anyone they talked to who offered opinions and oppositional facts, they are usually told, are working for "the devil." For the people reviewed in Walk Away, the story is generally the same yet always with damned interesting twists. In the end, people who walk away are amazed that there are others like them who feel no guilt for doing so. The expression of freedom felt yet not previously realized is offered by the more emotive people whereas most express relief that their ordeals were over. For so many people, the religion of their parents becomes the single-most important aspect of their lives around which all else revolves. Being told what to believe in all aspects of life, these people are isolated from the constraints of living in an uncomfortable world and fall easily into a realm where others instruct them in _all_ their activities, assuring them that, no matter what they do, if they believe in their deities, eventually they'll live without the worry and the strife that runs through the streets of the real world -- God will protect them from real life. The publication also covers violations of first amendment laws by the "religious right," offering detailed quotes from preachers as well as information on tax laws violations by right-wing churches which engage in politics. Walk Away insiders have somewhat covert access to such groups as "Operation Rescue" and Pat Robertson's crowd. Walk Away readers are offered a view of the agendas of right-wing groups which are often quite different than those stated in public. It traces the ties (financial or philosophical) between groups and political figures and will at times interview the 'opposition' -- those who would impose a theocracy in America. Some of the quotes of various preachers are outrageous -- we've heard them from the fundi crowd within this forum on a daily basis, of course, yet to hear these fundi's masters spout them underscores and gives a measure of solidity to the hatred and intolerance we see daily -- either here in HolySmoke or in the real world whenever an abortion clinic is attacked. The success of Walk Away's efforts to drag right-wing religious extremists out into the open for all to see is itself underscored in damned-funny letters to the editor by fundies. They're much the same as we get in this forum, of course, with claims that the editorship is "working for 'Satan.'" No doubt Walk Away receives its quota of mythology quotations as well. Also without a doubt, they receive a great many letters totally unfit for publication. Lastly, the publication also lists and describes books pertaining to First Amendment rights violations as well as about right-wing groups which perform them. Such titles are "Spiritual Warfare: The Politics of the Christian Right," and "Jesus Doesn't Live Here Anymore: From Fundamentalist to Freedom Writer." This last is written by Skipp Porteous and is published by a well-known friend of rationality which many HolySmoke and A_Theist participants will recognize: Prometheus Books. Skipp Porteous was once a fundamentalists preacher who, it seems, walked away much as Austin Miles did, taking up the cause of informing the populace of the insanity and constitutional rights violations only the godless, it seems, is capable of seeing. - Fredric Rice (818) 335-9601 The Skeptic Tank (1:102/890) 07/May/93 Walk Away and Freedom Writer Institute for First Amendment Studies, Inc. 357 North Plain Road Post Office Box 589 Great Barrington, MA. 01230 -=- Walk Away 4/year US$10.00 Freedom Writer US$25.00 --- Origin: Wanted dead or alive: Randall Terry, terrorists (1:102/890)

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