The tunnel coterie says that former Los Angeles District Attorney Reiner obstructed the fact-finding process throughout his tenure on the McMartin case and refused to use evidence gathered by the MTP that might have resulted in Ray Buckey's conviction. Summit maintains that the 1985 joint investigation by the district attorney, the sheriff's department and an experienced archaeological
firm (which concluded that there were no tunnels) was cursory. Reiner had only investigated the tunnels to begin with, according to Summit, in response to pressure from McMartin parents
who had courageously risked being stigmatized as vigilantes by first conducting their own, also fruitless, tunnel dig.
"Prosecutors, forced to a showdown," states Summit writing in the report's introduction,
"commissioned a superficial search of open terrain and, without going under the concrete floor of the preschool, branded the tunnel stories bogus."191
That perspective is a milder form of the invective that Summit has directed in the past at people with honest disagreements with his belief that:
Sadistic ritualistic abuse occurs, and occurs frequently, and occurs in stereotypic patterns and that the nature of that abuse does succeed in inducing dissociative reactions and confusion in the victim, as well as leaving confusion and disbelief in the wake of people who would hear it, and that that is a substantial and surprisingly frequent occurrence in our
Summit divides the "backlash" into related passive and aggressive levels. The passive backlash is formed by society's
"blind spot," i.e., its denial of things too hard to understand or too "terrible to hear." Put another way, it is a
"shared negative hallucination obscuring every aspect of child sex abuse."193 Examples of society's blindness, despite its increased awareness of sex abuse in recent decades, are victims in danger of rejection by society because they fall hopelessly within the
"forbidden sanctuaries" of boy victims, women perpetrators and ritual abuse.194
The other, aggressive backlash, is a well organized effort, designed to turn back the clock on child sex abuse disclosure by discrediting belief in children and their believers. To achieve that goal, the
"evil" backlashers will "quash and disqualify any evidence that it [ritual abuse] might exist," while picturing believers as unbelievable and fanatical.195 This backlash is very busy, producing historical revisionism on a
"daily" basis. It is also guilty of "increasingly polemic reasoning," used to describe ritual abuse cases as hysteria rather than fact; it often directs
"invective" at all believers in ritual abuse, including its alleged child victims. This
"dirty pool" is motivated by a need to "scapegoat the messengers of mysterious abuse claims rather than to understand those claims."196
People at the highest levels of society, according to Summit, may be part of the aggressive backlash conspiracy. Speaking before the 1985 Meese Commission on pornography, Summit said that a
"paralyzing calculated confusion" was being imposed by ". . . church, schools, medical and social service agencies, police, courts, government and public media." These organizations, Summit added,
"remain devoted to beliefs, policies and priorities that not only ignore, but often obscure the impact of adult sexual interest in children."197
In 1993 Summit stated that the "negative aspects" that caused the Jordan Minnesota ritual abuse case to fail
"have been highly touted by various organizations working toward a discrediting of children in general."198 The comment started the following dialogue with the reporter:
Reporter: Like the Attorney General of Minnesota?
Summit: The Attorney General of Minnesota
Reporter: He slammed the tools those investigators used to get those children to make disclosures.199
Summit: Either on camera of off, this is not an interview I can contribute to in any constructive way. I won't be forced into a corner arguing things that I don't believe. And I don't want to waste your time or my time with an argumentative interview schedule.200
In a 1987 speech, Summit warned mental health professionals of the danger of working with the police who might be part of a satanic cult:
". . . for that reason, any investigation that you might prompt on behalf of your client needs to be channeled as much as possible to trusted individuals."201 When asked by the CBS reporter if that statement was feeding paranoia, Summit backed down within the following exchange, admitting that his suggested scenario was contrived:
Summit: That sounds like it, that's why I need more of the context.
Reporter: I explained the context, Dr. Summit.
Summit: I'd say that's a comment made under the conditions there, whatever they were, that made me wish to try to prove the existence of something like ritual abuse.
Reporter: Isn't the context of this specifically that you were implying that because the police didn't
find anything they were involved in a satanic cult?
Summit: It sounds like that. And I regret if that's the meaning I gave to it.202
But in one of his most recent statements on the matter, Summit again expressed his fear that the highest levels of government may be involved in a conspiracy to cover up ritual abuse:
My experience, I have been much more upset in the past with a mass conspiracy government infiltration theory, which is just so distressing that I would rather not believe in it . . . Anytime that we are led to suspect that our own government officials are our enemies and our own local police have been infiltrated, it's a
paranoia-genic experience and you either have to throw it away and discard the people who are telling you that or get into it and lose all hope for personal security. It's really distressing and there is information that responsible people . . . believe that various cover ups do exist in the federal
Jerry Hobbs, the professional mineral prospector who helped direct the McMartin excavation, suspects that the District Attorney's office wanted to cover up evidence against the accused.
"They [the District Attorney's office] did a real shitty dig." Hobbs accuses the investigators of negligence for not looking in the right place:
". . . almost all the children told them, point blank, that they'd been under that floor [the floor for Ray Buckey's classroom] . . . When you got several dozen kids telling you that, you gotta prove it."204
Skeptics may wonder why Los Angeles District Attorney Ira Reiner, facing an uphill battle for his political life, rejected the new smoking tunnel evidence that might have won him at least one McMartin conviction and some electoral momentum during his campaign for state attorney general. For Hobbs, the answer is simple.
"There were some powerful people involved in that [McMartin] thing . . . and they had to cover their ass."205
In the summer, 1994 issue of Paranoia, former MTP director Ted Gunderson speculates (in an adaptation of the Spotlight story of the tunnels) that the DA's office suppressed the tunnel evidence because,
"Among the people [the children say molested them outside the school grounds] were household names: actors, sports
Gunderson's past views on law enforcement cover ups of ritual abuse conspiracies, consistent if nothing else, confirm Summit's worst
"paranoia-genic" fears. In an interview two years earlier with Executive Intelligence, the house organ of the Lyndon LaRouche's U.S. Labor Party, Gunderson opined that Ken Lanning, the FBI's chief expert on ritual abuse (who rejects ritual abuse conspiracy theories),
". . . is probably the most effective and foremost speaker for the satanic movement in this country, today or any time in the past"
with the exceptions of satanic celebrities Aleister Crowley, Anton LaVey, and Michael Aquino.207
Los Angeles County's Satanic Abuse Task Force, an official sub body of the Los Angeles County Women's Commission, concluded two years ago that Satanists were trying to pump diazinon poison into their office and home air vents in order to silence them. Task force members became suspicious, according to president Myra
Rydell, after experiencing bouts of profound exhaustion, headaches, and, perhaps most significantly,
"the inability to think straight." McMartin parent Jackie McGauley, also a task force member, told a reporter that, according to her doctor, diazinon would be
"virtually impossible to detect" if given in small doses over a long time period. The County's epidemic specialist said that diazinon was easy to detect and after his own investigation called the claims
"outrageous."208 Ted Gunderson, task force member and former head of the Los Angeles office of the FBI, also suspected poisoning.
"I can't prove it," he told the media. "We have evidence that our house has been entered and [that] somebody poured the substance into our wall heaters." But the results of independent lab tests on clothes believed by Gunderson to be contaminated were negative.209
The Hard-won Documentation: Who Will Buy It?
The supposed tunnels documentation will have to compete for credibility with a landmark survey of ritual abuse claims conducted by researchers for the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect
(NCCN). The researchers examined 12,264 allegations of ritual abuse gathered from 6,910 mental health professionals and 4,655 law enforcement and social service agencies. The survey's purpose, according to NCCN director David Lloyd, was to determine if post McMartin allegations of ritual and sadistic child abuse are based on
"mistaken perceptions or . . . firm evidence." Project director Dr. Gail Goodman reported that,
"After scouring the country, we have found no evidence for large-scale cults that sexually abuse children." More specifically, the survey refuted McMartin-like claims of
"a well-organized intergenerational satanic cult, who sexually molested and tortured children in their homes or schools for years and committed a series of murders."210
Ironically, true believers like Summit may use Goodman's report as further evidence that vast ritual abuse conspiracies do exist and of further proof that a backlash against children is at work.
There is one last hope for the McMartin revisionists, one last deep dark realm of unexplored territory that just might,
finally, produce some solid evidence. To reach it, interested parties must go down the ultimate tunnel. The tip comes from a report that appeared in a Finnish newspaper, six months prior to the
first McMartin trial verdicts, and was reprinted in Praise the Lord, a newsletter published by the Trinity Broadcasting Network. The article tells the story of a team of geologists who, after drilling nine miles down into the earth's crust, became alarmed by the sound of human screams. The sad cries were not the result of human
fingers caught in the drilling apparatus; they were from
"the condemned souls from the earth's deepest hole," according to the report. The geologists were
"terrified" that they had "let loose the evil powers of hell up to the earth's surface."
A qualified archaeologist is needed to excavate the drill hole in search of human artifacts and possible tunnels that may have connected to the former McMartin preschool site. If the archaeologist
finds any such evidence, he or she can write the new
"definitive" report on the McMartin tunnels. Of course, you probably won't be allowed to read it. But don't complain. Reports like that are meant to be cited, not read.