Greenbelt is a UK arts festival of long standing, with I understand a broadly Christian focus, and faith as one of its elements. I have never been to it. I might go to an arts festival, I might even go to a Christian festival, but it seems to me that any festival which tries to combine the two is unlikely to succeed. However. It has been going for 40 years. Someone called Erwin James is going to appear there this year, and I was struck by this piece on Harry's Place, "the murderer at Greenbelt". Erwin James is the nom de plume of James Monahan, who is indeed a convicted murderer and who is thus given a platform by the Guardian. I wouldn't know, as I do not read that filth. But he is. He has been writing for it since 2000, we are told. The murders Monahan committed, in the early 1980s, appear to have been of the homophobic persuasion. So naturally just right for the Guardian. Their favourite Islamist hate preachers must just love him.
Now if someone has committed a crime and served their time, they should return to society and have the opportunity to make a contribution in whatever way they can, right? Right. But the piece raises issues which are kind of interesting. Monahan appears to have made up some of his history. He won't be the first or last ex-con to do that. But there appear to be those, at the Guardian and at Greenbelt, who know this and are conniving at it. Why? Monahan appears, from the quotes attributed to him, not only to have no remorse (I do not think remorse is always compulsory) but not to believe that he has committed a crime at all. Here we are getting into a whole other scenario. That of the psychopath. That of the abuser who genuinely believes the victim wanted the abuse.
Welll, it made me think, anyway.