Shame, Shame, Shame!

by Helen Simkins Bangalow NSW – local Tourist Attraction Manager (Macadamia Castle), Australia

On Friday 12th October, 2012 I attended what was scheduled as an informative talk on the subject of Esoteric Medicine which is generally held several times annually at our local Lennox Head community centre.  I was joined by my 14 year old daughter and, for the first time for them, a close personal friend who works in health and her 12 year old son who had opted to come in with us instead of skating in the park next door.

Much to our dismay we discovered very quickly that this evening was not going to be the human health and wellbeing lecture we were expecting, but was hijacked. Instead we had a firsthand experience of the scurrilous operating methods of a National “News” programme – and this is how it all went.

Instead of the usual format, a guest speaker was introduced to us – a Dr David Millikan who, as Google informs me, holds a Ph.D. in Theology and is a filmmaker.  Our presenter, Serge Benhayon, the director of the Goonellabah complementary medicine clinic Universal Medicine, tells the audience that David had expressed an interest in us as a group and has some questions to ask us.

In light of the recent misrepresentation by a few in the local community and a section of the media, I welcomed this opportunity being “offered” by David.  Almost immediately I discover that this was no opportunity, but a plan by the National News station  (who David admits to us that he is employed by)  to create a sensationalist expose on us as a group.

After a brief personal introduction, David tells us that he is experienced in cult identification and is here to study us.

“Hold up” there is that word again AND David Millikan certainly did not study the group. No such opportunity existed.  The only agenda was a smear campaign, and the bottom line of the audience dollar which needs big themes and exciting stuff to be won on television as we all know.

David groomed us initially by stating “I think people are at their best and at their worst in religion – sometimes… at the very same moment” and follows that by saying based on several facts, we display all the indicators of forming a cult!  He includes mention that Serge Benhayon is “gathering a family” and other words including ‘authoritarian’ and ‘controlling’.  In addition we are quickly told that due to the fact that (David) has determined that we are followers we are not able to self- determine.

He then launched into his first long and convoluted accusation posed as a question. Hang on a second, I think; is he actually attacking me here? Oh yes – it is my little group sitting right next to one of the carefully positioned camera persons and they are focussed on us….. as it turned out, our every word and move was being recorded on camera without informing us.  I imagine that this behaviour is acceptable in the mind of someone who believes we need exposing or maybe even saving, but it was an unsavoury and an insulting experience.

Let me tell you that the conclusion was forgone – this was not investigative journalism, no voyage of discovery to the truth – we were merely present as fodder for a reporting piece. Very disappointing and very poor form on the part of a National News station and David Millikan – in the words of Derryn Hinch himself – SHAME, SHAME, SHAME.

120 thoughts on “Shame, Shame, Shame!

  1. It is shocking how someone can claim they want to study a group, a person, a circumstance but has already made up his mind what it is all about, that is not called studying it is simply prejudice.

  2. The behaviors of David Millikan, his film crew in the audience and the National News station betrayed our human rights. There is clearly enough evidence that this was the case that night and another example of failure of enforcement or action to uphold freedom of human rights in this country.

  3. Even though it is a reflection of the level of disharmony we have sunk to in our society, shameful, aggressive and manipulative behaviour such as this should never be accepted as the norm.

  4. There is still a lot of dismay for people both in this actual situation and others that occur that are similar to it. You literally can’t trust what you read and or see in our current form of media even though most know this we still turn on the TV or read the headlines. How and where do things like this end? As you never seem to be able to get the truth of what is happening anymore. I still read things in the media at times including headlines and find myself taken by a story. Then I always question I wonder what is really going on, I wonder what is really happening. I trust that I will continue to filter what I see reported through media channels knowing that the story is usually tagged with many parts to make me see it a certain way. As they say there is always another side to a story and while it seems it’s more difficult to find out at least be open to asking the question.

  5. This may have occurred nearly five years ago but I know that what unfolded that evening is still with those who attended and those of us who heard about the shameful behaviour after the event. It seems to me that it is sensationalism that sells papers and pumps up broadcasting revenue. That’s what the media companies rely on and they will continue to do so as long as the public keeps buying the papers and keep watching the television. So it is possible that if we, the public, stop buying the papers they may begin to listen, or perhaps they will just aim for even more sensationalism at the expense of humanity.

  6. Although I was not present at this event, from what I have read about it, I feel that it was a great expose of just where the press and media are at particularly with regard to their complete lack of respect for anyone. Everyone is considered fair game to dishonour if there is a story in it, made up or not.

  7. Even if David Millikan was correct in thinking that Serge Benhayon was a cult leader, and those who were in attendance were his followers – how could an action such as this would serve anyone at all? It is nothing but a very public bullying that only exposes the value the so-called news media stands by.

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