In the world of the FLDS, things are not always what they seem. The shiny, smiling surfaces often hide a world of rot and pain. And even royal blood and being born male can't protect you from sudden changes in its convoluted power structure.--pg. 8-The more I read about the FLDS and other cults, the more I see how much they are like countries that are run by dictators. Dictators and Cult leaders don't allow any freedom for its' members, most believe in communism and/or socialism and the members are brainwashed to believe their lives of slavery are a good thing.
-Warren Jeffs actually studied Hitler and obviously employed some of Hitler's methods to control people and get them to do what he wanted.
But while it (polygamy) might seem good in theory, in practice, at least in my experience, its' actually a recipe for misery for everyone involved. --pg. 8-Lost Boy by Brent W. Jeffs was another piece in my puzzle of learning about the FLDS. Up until now I had only read books by the women who had fled and by those who had investigated the FLDS. Jeffs highlights how polygamy isn't just horrific for the women, young men are also its' victims.
-I recently watched Sons of Perdition, which is a documentary about the many lost boys that either escape or are kicked out of the FLDS. Hundreds, and possibly close to 1,000 boys have been abandoned by their families at the behest of Warren Jeffs because they were competition for the older men.
-Sons of Perdition and Brent Jeffs' book highlight the many struggles that these boys go through. Most haven't gotten a good education, because too much time was spent indoctrinating them and also boys are expected to go to work at a young age. So, once they are in the outside world, they realize how far behind they are.
-Some of the boys have also been victims of abuse, so once they are on the outside, they are prime candidates to become drug addicts and become victims of other illegal activities.
-Brent Jeffs was a direct victim of Warren Jeffs, since Warren raped him and two of his brothers when they were only 5 years old. It is hard to fathom just how many lives Warren Jeffs has completely destroyed. Brent's older brother Clayne, was never able to cope with the sexual abuse at Warren's hands and he committed suicide.
-Clayne's death was a major motivator for Brent to get the help he needed to heal, to bring Warren to justice for his crimes and for Brent to tell his story.
-Below are some more quotes from the book:
I'd never really had a chance to develop my own interests.--pg. 146
It's hard to explain just how strange it is to lose your community, most of your family, and an entire belief system and way of life.--pg. 154
When everyone else around you believes, when every single person you know acts as though something is true, when you have been taught it every day since infancy, it really is hard to stand up. Being instructed day in and day out to value obedience, to see faith as higher than reason, and to discard independent thinking as a sign of possession by the devil makes it even more difficult.--pg. 168
By now, it was clear to me how Warren had turned the FLDS from a strange religion into a dangerous cult. The difference is this: whereas a religion may have weird beliefs and practices, a dangerous cult uses a combination of seemingly innocuous techniques to control people. It usually has a charismatic leader who is seen as the source of all wisdom and salvation. Such groups can actually push normal people to do bizarre things that they would never dream of doing on their own.--pg. 225-I regard Brent Jeffs as another hero like the women I have written about. He too, escaped and went on to face many obstacles, but stood up for himself and many others, so that there might be at least a little justice for the many victims of the FLDS.
When women are seen as second-class citizens, I don't think polygamy can be anything but abusive.--pg. 226
Previous FLDS Posts:
The Treatment of Women
Carolyn Jessop--A Portrait of Courage
Church of Lies
Studying the FLDS
When Men Become Gods
The Witness Wore Red