The other day we were browsing about on Twitter, as one does, when we noticed an interesting snippet of news. In her bid to claim to have been raped by every well-known person in the second half of the 20th century, Fiona Barnett recently alleged that she had been sexually molested by none other than the late American evangelical Christian preacher Reverend Billy Graham.
It seems that Fiona Barnett had challenged her followers not to take her word for it, but to check her story out with retired NYPD police officer Jim Rothstein: In fact, she claimed to be so certain that Rothstein would support her story about Graham that she challenged anyone who disbelieved her to call him and check it out. And she published his phone number.
One enterprising soul, a born-again Christian called Bill Chapman, decided to take Fiona at her word (generally a bad idea, as we shall see). Here’s what happened:
In the video, Chapman ensures that Rothstein is comfortable with him recording the call (a nicety we don’t often see). Then he asks,
So there’s a lady online right now, her name is Fiona Barnett. She is an Australian woman and has come to prominence over the years by making claims of Satanic ritual abuse as well as being abused by high-level Australian government officials and also recently, the late Reverend Billy Graham.
Making some outstanding, really outlandish claims that she was kidnapped, and taken to the Bohemian Grove in California, and raped by former President Richard Nixon, as well as Billy Graham, and when some people started to call her on it, she posted your name and your phone number…as well as an article about you. So I read that article and did some more reading about you, and I see the stuff that you did to combat child trafficking and it’s incredible the work that you put into that, and the difference it made. …
Can you go on the record and either substantiate or debunk these claims about Billy Graham that Fiona is claiming that you can corroborate all her testimony?
Rothstein’s response is swift and devastating:
I don’t corroborate anybody’s testimony, but I can tell you that I never ever had any evidence or any information that discredited Billy Graham, or that he was involved in this in any way. Never anywhere did we run across that.
To say Fiona was unhappy about this turn of events would be an understatement: Note that nearly 350 Fiona loyalists were nodding their heads emphatically in the background, and 130 of them retweeted her retort. For convenience, we will refer to these people as “FeeFee’s Flying Monkeys”. They will figure later on in the story.
Fiona’s anger was not reserved solely for Rothstein, though. Chapman received the standard vilification, reserved for anyone who challenges the deranged stories of online SRA fantasists:
Given that Chapman had dared to diss Barnett in the worst possible way—illustrating very vividly that she was in fact lying about Billy Graham—it’s hardly surprising that since the video was released, FeeFee’s Flying Monkeys have been swarming him, doing their best to smear him with the sort of slime which a person of his religious beliefs would find both offensive and ludicrous.
They have called him a “gay porn star”, a “pedophile”, a “CIA Luciferian”, an “MK Ultra handler”…all the usual.
Clearly, all this attention means he hit a nerve, and she didn’t like it.
Let’s be clear here
Looking at Chapman’s Twitter feed, it’s clear that our beliefs and interests are very, very different from his. He used to “research” QAnon, which we consider a cynical and dangerous hoax. To be fair, he has moved on from it, but still.
We do think that taking Barnett up on her dare—and doing it in a diligent, thorough, and respectful manner—showed a real commitment to finding the truth, which we can’t fault whatsoever.
In a similar vein, Chapman emailed Colonel Michael Aquino, a prominent Satanist who Barnett claimed had been involved in her MK Ultra programming when she was a child. Chapman asked whether this story was true, and Aquino asserted that it was not. In the course of the correspondence, Chapman mentioned his own military service, and Aquino thanked him; take a wild guess what Barnett did with that?
Yep. “A genuine Christian does not serve a Satanist”? Perhaps. But “genuine Christians” have certainly been known to serve in the military. And it’s considered polite to thank them for this.
Has she done this before?
In an interesting twist, we noted this tweet from one of Chapman’s Twitter followers: Hmm. Is it possible that for some sick reason, Barnett makes a habit of daring people to check up on her false accusations, only to use the inevitable denials as fodder for online harassment? Could she really be that devious?
Given what FeeFee and her Flying Monkeys have meted out to Chapman this week, we’re beginning to wonder.