SWASTIKAS, HUMAN RIGHTS & HATE CRIMES: A LESSON IN CIVIC EDUCATION
by Brenda Loew
(EIDOS News Service) I am certainly better off than I was during the Reagan/Bush/Quayle
administrations. My house has increased in value. It is worth much more money. I am enrolled in
a legal program at a major Boston university. I no longer drive a taxicab or deliver newspapers
like I did in the late 1980's to help make ends meet.
Financially, however, EIDOS has suffered terribly during the Clinton administration. Economic
support for our mission to advocate and defend first amendment rights to sexual freedom and
privacy for consenting adults has essentially evaporated. Clinton has lulled the left into oblivion.
The fact is that many small independent politically left of center publications which evolved
during the Culture Wars of the Reagan/Bush/Quayle 1980's are now defunct. Yet RU 486 still
is illegal. Pregnant women are being jailed and private clubs for consenting adults are being
raided. What's going on?
Ideologically, EIDOS supports the Gore/Lieberman ticket for President in the November 2000
election because a Gore/Lieberman White House will "more likely" ensure that the makeup of
the United States Supreme Court will not shift towards the right. In terms of economic freedom,
however, EIDOS would be better off financially if George W. Bush wins in November.
Additionally, the mainstream media will "more likely" be domestically freer during a
Gore/Lieberman administration. Imagine how differently the 1988 Bush presidential campaign
against Michael Dukakis would have turned out if, at that time, America's Republican-controlled
mainstream media had revealed to the American public Neil Bush's role in Silverado and the
savings and loan scandal, renowned as "the greatest financial scandal in the nation's
The American public has a very short memory.
A 1999 survey of public attitudes towards the First Amendment, conducted by the First
Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University, indicated Americans are not comfortable with the
news media. More than half of those who answered the survey believed the press has too much
freedom. One third believed the First Amendment "goes too far in the rights it guarantees."
Thes are alarming results:
"These findings call into question the durability of the First Amendment compact between the
government and the citizenry. For more than two centuries, the First Amendment
has represented a promise Americans made to themselves, resolving to endure even noxious speech in order
t preserve that compact. Americans have invested heavily in the proposition that it is
better to be offended than to be silenced. This survey however, reveals at best an inconstant commitment to
that promise and to that proposition."
I have personal knowledge of this so-called "inconstant commitment." At the July 2000 open
public meeting of the Newton Human Rights Commission -- during which took place a
discussion of the several locations throughout the city where swastikas had been
discovered drawn in elevators and on the walls of public buildings -- I held up a doodle of a swastika I
ha just drawn in my reporter's notebook. My intent was to demonstrate that the symbol was,
historically, regarded as a pagan symbol of Good Luck, and need not always be interpreted as
symbol of anti-Semitism or hatred. The meeting ended abruptly. I was immediately accused by
the members of the Human Rights Commission of committing a hate crime. The Newton Police
were called on the emergency 911 line and a police report was filed. This alleged criminal
act was reported to the Anti-Defamation League and is now a statistic.
Newton is a city that publicly prides itself for promoting "tolerance for diversity." But where was
the City's tolerance for my human rights? I interpret the behavior of the Newton Human Rights
Commission members the insane actions of un-American far left PC fascists. I've been
advised that I have an actionable case and ought to file a lawsuit.
The Green, Libertarian, and Reform parties don't stand a chance of winning the election. When
go to the polls to vote in November I refuse to throw my vote away with a protest vote. I have
already done much soul-searching and am trying to answer this very horrific and difficult
Which major party frightens me more? The military-industrial-corporate-media interests
supporting the one world government of George W. Bush's Far Right Theofascist/Theocratic
Christian Bible-Thumpers? Or the military-industrial-corporate-media interests supporting the
one world government of Al Gore's Far Left Godless Communist Red Chinese Barbarians?
The complex political era we have entered into has moved far beyond the simpler left-right
culture wars of America's '80's decade.
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MORMON SEX: A STUDY BY LOLA VAN WAGENEN (ROBERT REDFORD'S EX-WIFE)
by Brenda Loew
(EIDOS NEWS SERVICE -- Note: As the founder, publisher and editor of EIDOS, I am truly
disappointed that I never got a response from Dr. Lola Van Wagenen to the following five
questions. How would you answer them? Let me know. -- Brenda)
From: "Brenda Loew" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Lola Van Wagenen <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, May 27, 1999, 11:55 PM
Subject: Re: Your Dissertation
Dr. Van Wagenen:
Thank you for taking the time to respond to my recent email inquiry.
I truly understand that you are very busy with your company -- which is why I am exceptionally
grateful that you are permitting me to send some questions for your consideration.
I hope you will determine that my questions are worthy of your reply, and, I wish to extend my
deepest gratitude to you in advance for any questions you do choose to answer.
Thank you again for writing your dissertation.
My five questions are as follows:
1) How did your interest in the subject matter of your dissertation develop? What attracted you
to the relationship between women's suffrage, polygamy, Mormonism and feminism in the first
place? Does this topic still engage your attention? Please explain.
2) How would you most appropriately/accurately describe yourself, professionally? As a
feminist? A feminist historian? An academician? An entrepreneurial business woman? Some
other way? Or do you reject labels? Please explain.
3) According to your dissertation, the (Church of the Latter Day) "...Saints officially abandoned
plural marriage in the fall of 1890." In your opinion, more than 100 years later, what do
yo consider to be the 20th century's most resolved feminist/women's issue? Most unresolved
feminist/women's issue? What do you consider to be the fore-most feminist/woman's issue that
will require attention in the 21st century? Please explain.
4) In 1999, would you agree that, in America, consenting adults have first amendment rights and
privacy rights to believe, think, live, act and love they way they freely choose -- without fear of
being threatened, harassed or otherwise intimidated by those who are intolerant of diversity and
non-traditional differences? Please explain.
5) What is your new company all about? Why did you start it? What services does it provide?
What projects/activities are you currently working on? Do any of them also focus on women?
From: Lola Van Wagenen <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Brenda Loew <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: Your Dissertation
Date: Tue, May 25, 1999, 1:23 PM
Dear Brenda Loew:
Sorry the delay in answering your query. Thanks for the words on my dissertation.
I must admit I have a very serious case of dissertation burn out---the topic
and the issues are ones that I have a hard time focusing on right now. I am very
engaged with my new company and it it taking more hours than I already have, so
time is a real factor for me. But send my your questions and I'll see what you
need. Sincerely, Lola Van Wagenen
Brenda Loew wrote:
This email message for Dr. Lola Van Wagenen is from Brenda Loew at EIDOS
magazine in Boston.
Dr. Van Wagenen: Yesterday afternoon I called your office in NYC and
introduced myself as an independent feminist publisher and journalist from
Boston. A staff person gave me your email address.
I discovered your dissertation, " Sister-Wives and Suffragists: Polygamy and
the Politics of Woman Suffrage, 1870-1896," while researching the topic of
women's rights/feminism, free love, sexual freedom, personal sexualprivacy
rights and the first amendment (speech/press freedoms, church-state
separation, right to assemble) during the last century for an article I
planned to write for publication. I have not written the piece yet because
the discovery of your dissertation and its topics of women's rights and
Mormon women as sister-wives engaging in polygamy/plural marriage, etc.,
etc., etc., stopped me in my tracks.
I had no idea that this subject was of such interest to the well-known
women's rights leaders of that era (Anthony, Woodhull (a free lover) ,
Stanton, etc.). Historically, there have always been "opposing factions"
within the women's movement on the national and local levels. The fact that
the Mormon practice of plural marriage was considered uncivilized and
anti-Christian by so many .... so much so that it imperiled statehood for
Utah and Utah women's suffrage is **not** that well-documented, to my
knowledge, in mainstream feminist publications....
I am familiar with the Oneida Community and John Humphrey Noyes, Berlin
Heights and Modern Times and all the notoriously scandalous radical sex
journals of that time. I take the position that Mormons, especially Mormon
women, should be free to practice polygamy if they so choose because it is
really nobody's business -- particularly the government's. I myself am
not a Mormon. I am Celtic-Teutonic.
The reason why I am contacting you is to ask you if you might be interested
in responding to some questions about the subject of your dissertation --
related to all of the topics above -- for inclusion in my article. I will
keep the questions related entirely to the contents of your dissertation
and fully credit your dissertation and your answers as your own at the end
of the article. I will also send you a copy of the issue of the publication
in which it appears.
May I email you a sampler of questions for your consideration?
In freedom, Brenda Loew
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SEXUAL FREEDOM: A FUNDAMENTAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM
by Brenda Loew
(EIDOS NEWS SERVICE -- Note: The following article was accepted for publication in
PHAROS, a Parisian literary journal, in November 1999. It remains unpublished. -- Brenda)
Sexual Freedom: a Fundamental Religious Freedom
Brenda Loew, Publisher, EIDOS Magazine
I advocate sexual freedom. I believe consenting adults have the freedom to choose in all areas
o erotic and sexual life and lifestyle. I publish and edit EIDOS, an independent magazine
an website for freethinkers who value their human, constitutional and civil rights to personal
freedom of expression and sexual privacy rights. EIDOS stands for "Everyone Is Doing
Outrageous Sex." At EIDOS we say, "Sex is here to stay. We live in a sexually pluralistic
society. The Battle for Sexual Freedom will never be lost."
I am a humanist who personally rejects organized religion for myself but not for any-/everybody
else. I am neither atheist nor agnostic. I believe I am tolerant of diversity. I also believe in the
paranormal. I believe animals have souls. My spirituality is an eclectic, nature-based blend of the
old Celtic-Teutonic-Nordic-Wiccan European pagan traditions. I also fully agree
with Joseph Campbell who said: "The western subjugation of the female is a function of biblical
thinking...Earth is the body of the goddess....Women, magic and the earth are the same. They
are related." (in: Program Five: Love and the Goddess of the series The Power of Myth with Bill
Recently, while researching the topics of women's rights, feminism, free love, sexual freedom,
personal sexual privacy rights and the first amendment for an EIDOS editorial, I discovered Dr.
Lola Van Wagenen's doctoral dissertation, "Sister-Wives and Suffragists: Polygamy and the
Politics of Women's Suffrage, 1870-1896". Lola Van Wagenen is the ex-wife of
actor-director, environmentalist and indie film advocate Robert Redford.
I had never read anything about this subject before. I was certainly already familiar with the
nineteenth century Christian free love communities of Oneida, Berlin Heights and Modern Times
as well as the notoriously scandalous radical sex journals of that era. I already knew that
nineteenth century radical feminists were militant activists who called for social
revolution, a woman¹s right to control her own sexual choices, freedom from physical and mental coercion,
and the abandonment of patriarchy.
But Dr. Van Wagenen's dissertation sent chills down my spine. Its comprehensive
historica coverage of nineteenth century Mormon women as sister-wives engaging in polygamy/plural
marriage presented a really frightening exposé of a deliberate campaign of unbridled religious
and sexual bigotry against a minority group, no different than twentieth century
witch-hunts against Jews, gays, lesbians and others.
According to Van Wagenen, "Belief in plural marriage implied a rejection of
the Christian concept of marriage and family, and thus was seen by many non-Mormons as a threat to the
very foundation of civilized behavior, social stability, and Christian morality." The Mormon
practice of plural marriage was considered uncivilized and un-Christian by many non-Mormons
both in Utah and throughout the entire nation.
What I learned from Van Wagenen's dissertation was that Mormon polygamy was of
much interest to many of that era's most high profile women's rights leaders, including Susan Anthony
(a birth control advocate), Victoria Woodhull (a free lover) and Elizabeth Cady Stanton (a
spiritualist who argued that patriarchy taught the subjection of women). Yet, for decades
during the nineteenth century, anti-polygamy non-Mormon activists, including conservative feminists,
linked the establishment of statehood for Utah and suffrage for Utah's women to the
"crime of polygamy." They tampered with the political and legislative processes in violation of the
Mormons¹ first amendment guarantee to religious freedom -- a fundamental human right. And
in the end they won. In 1890, the Church of the Latter Day Saints officially abandoned plural
Polygamy is, historically, more the rule than the exception. In a study of data from 853 human
societies worldwide, both past and present, 84% practiced polygamy and/or found it
acceptable. In only 16% of those societies was monogamy considered the norm. (In:
Th Encyclopedia of Erotic Wisdom, A Reference Guide to the Symbolism, Techniques,
Rituals Sacred Texts, Psychology, Anatomy and History of Sexuality. Camphausen, Rufus C.
Inner Traditions International, Rochester, VT . 1991.)
According to the King James version of Bible (OT), King David's son, Solomon, reportedly
had a harem said to include "700 wives, princesses, and 300 concubines" (1 Kings 11: 1-3)
|But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with
the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites,
Edomites, Zido'nians, and Hittites, of the nations concerning
which the Lord said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go
in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they
will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto
these in love. And he had seven hundred wives, princesses,
and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his
In 1999, Muslim men are still permitted to have up to four wives at the same time.
The bottom line is that our nation was the first in history founded on the principle of church-state
separation. Mormons should have been left alone to freely follow their polygamist personal
lifestyle and religious belief system. Instead they were forced, unconstitutionally, to conform with
the beliefs and practices of other religions and the United States government.
When you get an opportunity, look up the word "force" in Black's Law Dictionary. Then look
up the words "free" and "freedom."
Sister-Wives and Suffragists: Polygamy and the Politics of Woman Suffrage,
1870-1896. Van Wagenen, Lola, Ph.D. New York University, 1994.
The X-Rated Bible. Akerly, Ben Edward.American Atheist Press, Austin, TX
Sex and the Bible. Larue, Gerald. Prometheus Books, Buffalo, NY. 1983.
Brenda Loew lives with her bassett hound Duncan in a very old house built at the time Thomas
Jefferson was president of the United States. Recently, she was a candidate for School
Committee in her hometown of Newton, MA. In her spare time, Brenda enjoys canoeing,
biking, running, working out and golfing. She is an advocate of independent media and
sociall responsible business and is a member of the Independent Press Association, National
Writers Union and Co-op America Business Network.
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ALAN KEYES, SEXUAL PASSION AND EIDOS' POSITION
by Brenda Loew
(EIDOS News Service) This past July -- long before Al Gore selected Joe Lieberman, an
orthodox Jew, as his running mate -- I was invited by some political friends to hear two-time
presidential hopeful Alan Keyes, a Black Roman Catholic, speak at the Massachusetts
Stat House on the subject of moral discipline. As a monogamous pagan who promotes sexual
responsibility, I did not disagree with Keyes' advocacy of sexual responsibility within
marriage or his advocacy of sexual self-control for unmarried individuals.
I agreed with Keyes that the ability to control one's sexual passions is essential but disagreed
with his belief that efforts to promote and fund alternative sex education programs in the
Massachusetts' public schools aimed at advocating abstinence for gay high school students
would be viable.
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WHAT'S WRONG IN AMERICA? THERE'S NO INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING, STUPID
by Brenda Loew
(EIDOS News Service) Historically, all great western civilizations (i.e. Egyptian, Greek,
Roman have ended. The United States is reportedly the most successful western civilization
i the history of mankind. If that's true, then how much longer will this nation and its democracy
Many Americans believe a confrontation with the Communist Chinese is inevitable. China is the
most populous nation in the world. The Communist Chinese have already got a foothold here.
They have taken over the Panama Canal and have set up a military base in the West. They have
befriended our worst enemies in the Middle East and elsewhere. They are infiltrating
Africa. You would think that America's leaders (and leaders in England and
Canada as well) would have learned from World War II that you can't do business with totalitarians. Red China has one of
the world's worst human rights records. Chinese workers suffer some of the worst
labor conditions. Nazi atrocities will seem humane compared to what the Chinese are capable of
meting out to their enemies. It would appear that no one in a position of power and authority in
the America media is making sure that history doesn't repeat itself. America
needs a strong military and a national anti-missile defense system. Why is Clinton listening to Russia and China?
Why do you think the mainstream American press is not aggressively reporting this? Because
the major media are big corporations that have to push for profits and don't care about the
U.S Constitution and traditional American values. If there's a war, the global, transnational corporate
mainstream media will make a lot of money covering it. In Russia. In China. In Iraq,
Iran, and North Korea.
Of course if America loses and the American media is taken over by the Communist Chinese
government, global, transnational media conglomerates are covering their bets: they surely don't
intend to purposefully alienate pro-big business, anti-human rights Chinese victors in advance.
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EIDOS FOUNDER BRENDA LOEW SUPPORTS MT. VERNON LADIES ASSOCIATION; ENTERS BILL OF RIGHTS CONTEST -- AND LOSES; WINS
PHOTO CONTEST; HOSTS CABLE TV SHOW
(EIDOS NEWS SERVICE) I recently received a letter from Mrs. Robert E. Lee IV,
Vic Regent, asking me to contribute to the Mt. Vernon Ladies Association. I had never heard of this
group before. The Mt. Vernon's Ladies Association is the oldest patriotic woman's organization
in the country. It exists to preserve George Washington's mansion, grounds, gardens, tomb and
artifacts. It funds education projects relative to the Father of Our Country. Because I agree with
the Association's statement that "A portrait of George Washington used to be found in every
American classroom. Now he is barely mentioned in the history books...American patriotism
seems to have fallen by the wayside today," I made a $50 donation towards the mission of this
inspirational women's organization.
On July 4, 2000 Mighty Words, the sponsor of the American Perspectives Writing Competition, announced the winner of their $15,000 first place
prize for the best perspective written on the first ten amendments to the
American Constitution. The subject was: Tell us what the Bill of Rights means to you in today's world. I submitted a wonderful essay -- which lost. It
appears on the Articles page of the EIDOS website. I will print it out and mail it to anyone
wh requests a copy. It's quite lengthy. which is why I did not publish it in a printed issue of the
EIDOS newsletter. I should have known intuitively that the panel of judges -- comprised of
New York Times best selling author, a presidential biographer and a constitutional
scholar from Harvard University -- would select "one of their own" as the first place prize winner. This
contest was a done deal. The fix was in. It's the American Way, isn't it? Money goes to money.
As for me, "Never again."
On the other hand, my original color photo "Loyal Friend" (see below) was selected by the
International Library of Photography "because of its unique perspective and your artistic vision"
for inclusion in their forthcoming Life's Legacy collection of amateur stock photography. I'll
receive royalty payments whenever this photo is used. To view this award-winning photo on
the internet, go to www.picture.com and search for my name "Loew." Or
On Wednesday, March 29, 2000, I hosted Newton Talk, a controversial local talk show that
airs live every Wednesday night on public access television and is re-run close to twenty times
during the week. For close to a decade the show has been produced and hosted each week by
lifelong Newton resident Jackie Morrissey, who was out of town on vacation ton that day. My
guest that evening was Operation Rescue - Boston president, Bill Cotter. Bill Cotter was polite,
respectful and a perfect gentleman. The civility we demonstrated towards each other
upset many leftists in the community -- some of whom called in to the show. Bill and I covered a lot
o history during that half hour broadcast, Bill reminded viewers that Operation Rescue
clinic blockades were quite prominent during the 1988 Democratic Party Convention in Atlanta. I
asked him what the movement had in store for the Republican and Democratic national
conventions in 2000 -- but he wouldn't say. And now you know the rest of the story.
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LETTERS TO EIDOS
Click here to read more
Fist Fucking Friend
Hello Brenda, I read in your Discussion group that you are going to change
EIDOS. I like the direction you're going to take it in. Will the
subscription rates be the same? What was the issue of FATE magazine that you
are in? I'd like to read it. Looking forward to the New
Socio-Political/Erotic EIDOS that will Punch-Fuck the Establishment like a
Fist! "To Fist is to Live."
Corporate Censorship on the Web
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FRIENDS OF EIDOS
Recent links we've added to our website
Temple of Aphrodite
Rock Out Censorship
Witches Anti-Defamation League
Friends of the Swastika
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BOOK REVIEW: RESOURCES FOR RADICALS
"An inexpensive, essential compilation of crucial information. A Must Have." -
The Second Edition, Revised, of Resources for Radicals, an annotated bibliography of print
resources for those involved in movements for social transformation, is now available. Like the
first edition, the original second edition sold old. Resources for Radicals is written and compiled
by Brian Burch, a Toronto based writer with a history of activism going back to the time of
the Vietnam War. His work has appeared in over 100 publications and anthologies in Canada, the
United States, England and Australia. He is a member of the National Writers Union (UAW
Local 1981). His other books include For Christ and Kropotkin, Still Under the Thumb, The
Anarchist Dinosaur and Next Exit. Resources for Radicals grew out of requests for further
information that arose from workshops in non-violence conducted by Toronto Action for
Social Change. Participants were seeking a list of resources that they could read for more in depth
information, inspiration, ideas and analysis than could be shared in the space of a workshop.
Periodicals as diverse as Earth First! Journal, The Catholic Worker, Danzine, Highgrader,
Socialist Action, Kick it Over, The Industrial Worker, Conscience Canada News and
Shelterforce are included. Books from authors as varied as Dorothy Day, Emma Goldman,
Petra Kelly, Ruth Morris, Peter Kropotkin, Thomas Merton, Desmond Morton and William
Kilbourne can be found. There are approximately 800 entries in total. A wide range of topics
are touched on, from meeting facilitation to community gardening to civil disobedience to union
organizing. Work coming from such struggles as the feminist, animal rights, ecology and the
peace movement abound.
Resources for Radicals is available from Toronto Action for Social
Change. The price (including postage and handling) is:
$12.00 U.S. (U.S. funds)
$14.00 Rest of the World. (U.S. funds)
Resources for Radicals is revised frequently, with a new edition due out in March of 2001.
Books and magazines focusing on feminism, union organizing, popular culture, sexual freedom,
humanism, anarchism, radical Christianity, strikes, demonstrations, ecology, non-violence,
socialism, co-operatives, aboriginal rights, pacifism, urban renewal, urban agriculture,
revolutionary theory, black history, community shared agriculture, pro-choice, anti-imperialism, communism, penal abolition,
multi-faith dialogue, conflict resolution, ploughshares efforts, alternative dance and
theatre forms, critical mass, paganism, public transportation, community organizing, community economic development, sexual diversity, squatting,
seamless pro-life, alternative media, anti-fascism, anti-racism, animal liberation, intentional communities, disAbilities
activism, civilian based defense, credit unions and other expressions of radical non-violent
dissent are welcome and should be sent to:
Brian Burch, Editor
Resources for Radicals
20 Spruce St.,
Toronto, Ontario (Canada)
Especially welcome are handbooks, guides for trainers and directories.
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