This is a guest view by a person using the handle, “TG, Independent Film Maker, Forgotten Ones” and is in response to the article, The Man Who Wants to Get Keith Raniere Out of Jail: Eduardo Asunsolo. I like the respectful tone of the questions.
By TG, Independent Film Maker, Forgotten Ones
You raise some valid points:
* The trial was subject to very emotional testimony and media reports of a “sex cult” and “sex trafficking” omitted the details of the situations. The sex trafficking Keith Alan Raniere was charged with was not a conventional, monetary exchange and only happened once.
* The things that hit the media (branding, child sexual abuse) were not the crimes that KAR was charged with committing.
* Prejudice is present within the judicial system and, most importantly, through public monitoring, direct feedback and participation, people have the power to change that.
However, you seem to want to blame the media (Frank Report, New York Times) for the problems KAR has had. However, this removes Nxivm and Keith from any accountability. Furthermore, the FR and NYT articles could not have taken hold unless there was some significant truth to them.
From my experience of you, you are intelligent and seek to be a responsible and socially committed human. However, it seems hard for you to address the horrors that Keith, Clare Bronfman and Nxivm promoted. Sure, some women benefited from DOS, but many women were coerced. They were put in a bait-and-switch situation They were lied to. They were told KAR had nothing to do with DOS and then they were given assignments to sexually seduce him!
Texts prove that Keith asked for DOS “fuck toys”. How come you don’t find that problematic? Why are you not able to believe these women? Don’t you see this was not an isolated case, rather indicative of pathological narcissistic behavior?
Furthermore, didn’t Nancy or someone tell you Keith was celibate when you first took the initial 5-day seminar?
How does it feel to be lied to? Isn’t it totally untruthful and scandalous to set Keith up as a noble saint who sacrifices earthly pleasure for the good of humanity – and then find out he spends half the night fucking all the board members and inner circle of Nxivm, along with a continuous pipeline of new recruits?
It’s great that you had a positive experience with him athletically and intellectually; but what about everyone else that was abused? What about all the women he promised to have an avatar child with? What about the woman who testified he fucked her when she was 15 and all the other underage women whose claims were never taken seriously by authorities? How do feel that Clare Bronfman funded an army of lawyers to sue all Nxivm dissenters into submission?
Your response seems to be “No one can make anyone do anything they don’t really want to do” – and “No one can be manipulated”. These are truisms that protect you, Keith and Nxivm from being accountable. People trusted Keith and that trust was gained by a continuous stream of lies promoted by Nancy and Keith’s inner circle: “Keith is the smartest man in the world”; “Keith is celibate”; “Keith developed all the ideas in Nxivm all by himself”; “Edgar Bronfman was out to get Keith”; “The media was out to get Keith”; “Everyone (Natalie, Bouchey, Dones, Keeffe, etc.) lied, stole and deserved being sued to death or imprisoned”.
Ed, the reality is lonely, insecure people were manipulated through a slow boil of lies and false claims by a smiling group of Keith’s female followers. The reality is many people were harmed by the false claims and it led to abusive, criminal, sexual and financial behavior. Money laundering was real. Where did that $520K in Nancy’s attic come from?
The problem with Keith is he is not accountable for his own behavior; he lied to women and abused them; when people abandoned him, he had them shunned, sued and attacked. When others made this public, he attacked them and paid political consultants and a vast array of lawyers to have them censored.
When you do not see the dangers Keith caused, you risk repeating these dangers yourself. When you allow Keith to not be held accountable, you allow yourself to not be accountable. You, in fact, create a morality where no abuser can be held accountable for their crimes because after-all, “the victims chose to be victims”. You blame the victim. So, where does it all stop, Ed?
Where does one find justice if a sex abuser cannot be stopped because “women choose to be victims”?
Ed, you are a smart guy. Why don’t you hold Keith accountable for the lies, abuses, and the ultimate destruction of your community? What do you get out of not holding Keith accountable?
Keith destroyed his own future and you, Danielle Roberts and Nicki Clyne are destroying your own by not acknowledging the damage he created.