A few weeks ago, I was approached by Mel Ve—whose name has frequently graced these pages—with an unusual proposition: would I be interested in doing an interview with her on the topic of recovered memories and the people who promote them? Readers may know that Mel and HR have not always been on the best of terms, and I’ll confess that I was a bit hesitant at first.
However, as we talked about some of the dodgy therapists and hoax pushers she’d met as creative director of the Conscious Consumer Network, it became clear to me that this was an area where we could find some common ground.
I think this is important: one of the problems with the great divide between those who accept various conspiracy theories and those who don’t is the “us versus them” attitude which can keep both sides mired in enmity, slinging epithets back and forth and accomplishing nothing.
Some of you might be familiar with Mick West, creator of the Metabunk website and author of Escaping the Rabbit Hole, released last year. He followed the book with a YouTube series, “Tales from the Rabbit Hole”, in which he discusses various conspiracy theories with people who believe in them. It’s an approach I admire: honest, respectful, and thoughtful, Mick is not shy about stating when his beliefs don’t mesh with his guests’, but he’s also willing to join them in discussing areas where they can agree with one another.
I should clarify that this doesn’t mean I’ve gone soft on those who have devoted the past five years to destroying the lives of the parents, children, clergy, teachers, social workers, and business owners of Hampstead. But there is a big difference between holding a belief—which we are all entitled to do—and acting on that belief in a way that harms others.
Anyway. Back to the video—videos, actually, as we wound up doing two interviews, the second of which I’ll publish tomorrow.
Mel and I discuss how memory works and doesn’t work, how certain therapeutic techniques can create false memories out of whole cloth, and how certain therapists have exploited these techniques for their own gain.
I hope you’ll find it interesting.