ADD2: Please click here for the new date.
A little note: A lot of these posts become very popular and, thanks to Google, become your first introduction to this site. But it's a good idea to click on the top, where I'm smiling like Christmas in the camera viewer, to get to the most recent updates. Many of the posts have good "evergreen" information and analysis. But for the latest updates, always check the newest posts. Thanks! Camille
In regards to Mr. James Arthur Ray and the Sedona sweat lodge disaster...
When everybody was focused like a laser on the mitigation/sentencing coming up for this week, after Judge Darrow declined to order a new trial on the 14th, I urged a note of caution (just scroll below or click). Anything can still happen, I said. Courts do funny things, dates never seem to be written in stone. I talked about Special Actions and other odd creatures in the menagerie of the Court of Appeals.
I failed to note the potential for heart attack type episodes in the single person without whom the hearing cannot proceed: James Ray's Arizona attorney. Without a member of the Arizona Bar at the helm, the good ship Defense o' Ray is not allowed to enter the harbor of Copper State Jurisprudence.
I would have loved to say I told you so, but I really didn't. Sigh. I wish Mr. Kelly, the suffering attorney in question, all the best in the world. How lovely for him that when he needed the hospital in the sparsely furnished Yavapai County, it wasn't overwhelmed with sick and dying Spiritual Warriors.
When I drive up there it always impresses on me that a land full of trees, vast spreads of bare rock and few people absolutely cannot afford to have the sweat lodge type disaster occur with any frequency. The very limited resources from trained personnel to helicopters and ambulances to space in the ER could not handle it. The regular community would be shut out of care when they needed it and taxed to death to support it all when they were able.
That's why we criminalize certain behaviors: on top of being just plain wrong (which is rarely enough to get many people to act), these behaviors affect entire communities and make life insupportable. So we band together, tax ourselves, create laws and deputize people to enforce them. If you tended to think this disaster of the sweat lodge was a private matter between a business and some customers, think again. Those deaths and those dozens of trips to a small hospital were one hundred percent preventable. They caused harm not just to families but to an entire community, the very definition of public life.
Thanks for visiting this site, your comments are welcome and thank you to all who have already shared your thoughts here. See you in a couple of weeks in Prescott....that is, maybe. The new date seems to be October 6, but you never know!
P.S. For those of you in the Los Angeles area, why not come to the West Hollywood Book Fair on Sunday morning (Oct 2) and meet me? I'll be on the Can You Handle the Truth? panel in the Mystery and Suspense Pavilion. I would love to meet you!
Camille Kimball's books: