I knew Bo and Sita and the whole scene here in North Carolina, as well as his work in prison. This is a very appropriate obituary. Bo is responsible for some wonderful work, but he had a serious power trip and anger issues that made him poorly suited to this work. He wanted a cult, and still has devoted followers who will never see a dark side. We can remember the whole of his life without feeling this is somehow negative or disrespectful.
The comments are getting very ugly. What we need is some love, compassion, and forgiveness for one another, folks....I've had some very rough experiences being attacked, threatened, hassled and ripped off, leg broken, etc. etc., by angry black men, so I am motivated to see healing for our broken society. We need to defuse the anger and resentment and learn to live together in peace. Everybody's here together, and there is only "us"; "them" doesn't exist.
Every student in school needs to feel he or she is treated by the same standard as every other student, and if such a policy means some groups get more punishment than others, that's just the way it should be, in hopes that things even out in time. Kids are aware of what is fair and what is not from a very early age, as every parent of more than one child knows.
What we need is a measure of the behavior of these ethnic groups to compare with the discipline rates. My experience has been that, regrettably, there is a much higher rate of actions meriting, and requiring, disciplinary action in minority groups. It would seem a more productive and positive approach to do something about the behavior and the criminalized cultures involved than to simply assume some kind of racist motivation to the schools. This must be done by everyone in the community together or there is no chance of healing.
It is poor journalistic practice to refer to the witness as a "snitch"; that is the term used by criminals who want to be able to get away with all kinds of crimes. I know, I have very personal experience as a victim of violent crime and have seen how the "snitch" label is widely used to facilitate horrendous behavior. It is a symptom of a widespread criminalization of whole sections of our society that leaves very serious crimes unsolvable.
I have personal experience with Bo and Sita and have for a long time felt frustrated that the reality of the situation with this cult was not widely understood. Human Kindness Foundation profited from the good wishes and compassion of many who care about the plight of prisoners, and also from the inmates with few resources or friends who were maximally vunerable to control and domination. People simply don't want to believe that Bo and Sita can be manipulative and anything other than the saints that they portray themselves to be in their publicity.
Bo did what so many others have done, typical of primate social order right back to the baboons; the head male desexualizes the subordinate males and thus has access to the women. Oddly enough, primate females tend to like this and make it possible with their compliance, perhaps due to the preference for dominant male genes. (This process need not go all the way to physical sex to be in operation.)
Bo insisted on being the boss-man of a cult, and my dissent was met with long and extremely profane tirades. He presumed to teach about anger to people for whom anger control is a life-and-death issue, while himself having a profound rage problem. I shudder to think how he would fare as a prisoner himself.
Bo didn't really want volunteers; he wanted devotees, which actually translated in this context as slaves, who would not have any voice in the community and in general would leave when they tired of this treatment. I have met people as far away as New Mexico (at the Neem Karoli Baba temple) who have had this experience with Kindness House. There are some people who want to be dominated, and like the sense of simplicity and security that comes from giving up control to someone eager to take it. There is no shortage of such pathological dominators to take up the job. (Bo told me he didn't want anybody at Kindness House who had a "problem with authority", when of course the problem was his; somebody has to be in charge of everything, but it doesn't need to be Stalin.)
I hope that this article and subsequent reactions can result in a more accurate understanding of their motivations and true results of their work in the community. Actually I hope that there can be a court order restraining Bo from visiting prisons anywhere in the country; if not that, then perhaps he will be prevented by lack of contributions.
The author of the Indy article did not understand Neem Karoli Baba at all, but this is understandable as he is a very puzzling figure. I can vouch for NKB's status as a very high being worthy of respect and, for me, devotion. One is as unlikely to get the real picture about NKB from the Human Kindness Foundation as one would learn about Jesus from David Koresh or Jim Jones.
Indy Week • 302 E. Pettigrew St., Suite 300, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
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