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This is a very disturbing and uncomfortable subject matter, but I think it’s a story that needs to be told. Cults are certainly nothing new in American culture.

Almost everyone is familiar with Jim Jones and his “People’s Temple” that ended in mass suicide. Most have heard of the crazy “Heaven’s Gate” cult that committed suicide to catch an alien spacecraft trailing the “HaleBop” comet some years back.

However, one cult you probably haven’t heard about is called “The Family” or “Children of God” or as it’s known today “The Family International.”

This particular group is without a doubt the most disturbing and I dangerous cult I have ever heard of. I became interested in this story after accidentally coming upon a site created by some of the survivors of “The Family.” I decided to find out more about this group, but what I found was more horrifying than anything I could have ever imagined.

Coincidentally, a couple of weeks ago an excellent documentary aired on television made by a handful of young men who were raised in the “The Family” but escaped in there late teens and early twenties.

It was a very unpleasant but very revealing look at the devastating psychological effects there upbringing has had on them. You can read a review of ‘Children of God‘ from the Los Angeles Times and find out a little more about the film.

Sex is the driving force behind the group and children are thought of as “sexual beings” and the sexual abuse of children begins at infancy and continues to adulthood. Sexual intercourse with siblings and other children and adults is encouraged by the group’s leaders David Berg and Karen Zerby.

David Berg and Karen Zerby gave birth to a boy in 1976, and were determined to make Ricky a “poster boy” for their followers. They named the boy Ricky, but called him “Davidito.” He was, according to them, a divine prince, destined to lead the Children of God through the biblical end time. As such, they felt that Ricky must be molded into an ideal follower, an incarnation of their beliefs and practices. His upbringing was exhaustively documented and highly publicized as a model for all parents in The Family to follow. As a result, Ricky’s childhood and youth was spent in a highly controlled environment characterized by intense indoctrination, stringent discipline, and sexual initiation by adults.

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In early 2001 Ricky made his escape, but the psychological damage he suffered made it impossible for him to live a normal life. He spent several years plotting revenge and in 2005 Ricky Rodriguez hunted down a member of “The Family” who was his “nanny” and routinely sexually abused him. He kidnapped, tortured, and murdered her then committed suicide shortly after that.

Rodriguez left behind a videotape confession nearly an hour in length discussing why he did what he did and what the cult did to him and his siblings. It’s important to remember that this group still operates in large numbers both in the U.S. and around the world.

I think most people will be very surprised that such a sick and disturbing group has been allowed to operate with impunity inside the United States.

David Berg died in 1995 leaving his wife Karen solely in charge of the group. Her exact whereabouts are a closely guarded secret within the organization, because of death threats made by some of her former victims.

Write your Congressman and tell him/her that you want an investigation by the Justice Department into this group.

Written By Chris Jones
Editor-In-Chief
The Hot Joints

webmaster@thehotjoints.com

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