Tag Archives: TED

Reader: i just watched your ted talk Have you ever met a Monster. I am a survivor of sexual assault

Comment: I do not know if you would read this but i just watched your ted talk Have you ever meet a Monster. I am a survivor of sexual assault (a word I have just been able to say).I became a survivor of course while dorming at college 5 years ago and then person who assaulted me was not a bad person at all. If anything i always blamed myself and felt bad for him even though i shouldn’t.

This has and still causes me many problems due to a sense of guilt and pity. I wanted to message you because that ted talk was so important. It was important to me to hear and important to everyone to hear. Thank you so much for sharing not only Margot story but also Brent.

-Anna

October 23, 2018

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Reader: I wish I could have saved Brent Brents when he was a little boy

Comment: Dear Amy,
I just watched the Ted Talks video about Brent Brents. I’m in tears for that little boy. My heart is broken for him. I’m sitting here, feeling like I want to do something, but I’m not sure what. If there is anything I can do, anywhere I can volunteer, any way to let Brent Brents know that people care about him, please let me know. If I could save ALL children from any and all abuse, I would. I wish I could have saved Brent Brents when he was a little boy. It just breaks my heart. Thank you, Amy, for shedding light on this, and for your work. But, really, if there’s away to not forget Brent, and to let him know he is cared about, please let me know.

Thank you.

Ciara Wetherell

Time: September 10, 2018 at 8:57 am
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considering the perpetrators of sexual violence

Comment: Hi Amy,
I’m watching your TedTalk and I just wanted to thank you for bringing up this issue of considering the perpetrators of sexual violence. You brought up a good point-that discussing why people commit such acts and seeing their suffering is not the same as excusing their actions. Really-wonderful perspective! Have you ever seen the documentary, The Mask You Live In? This discusses how we bring up boys in society and its negative effects.
Best of luck to you in all of your pursuits!
Amber

Time: May 3, 2018 at 4:54 pm
Contact Form URL: https://diaryofapredator.com/contact/

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We have become a society of monster makers.

Comment: Hi Amy,

I just watched your TED Talk on the Brents case. Back when I was studying for an Administration of Justice degree, I remember studying serial killer cases with curiosity at first, but they seemed to run together and became boring to me . . . turns out evil is boring. Human decency really fascinated me because it seemed rarer in media headlines (by design for ad revenue?)

However, when I studied the Carl Panzram case, I was jolted to the core. His acts were no more or less heinous than other “monsters,” but his childhood upbringing really hit me hard. We have become a society of monster makers.

Are you familiar with his case? Books and a feature film were made about it all.

Brent Brents immediately reminded me of Carl Panzram. Your involvement in the Brents case is very similar to Henry Lesser’s intervention with Panzram. He was the one prison guard who treated Panzram as a human being without forgetting for a second the evil he was capable of in his broken state.

Anyway, thanks for talking about this!
Suzanne

Time: March 18, 2018 at 3:57 pm
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at least quit thinking about revenge

Thank You.

Dear Amy, You changed my life today. I just listened to your Ted talk, “Have You Ever Met a Monster?” and I want you to know that you changed my life.

You are also helping me to forgive my father – if not to excuse him, to at least quit thinking about revenge. Thank you.

All the best,

Susan

February 7, 2018

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what an inspiration in the woman who was able to forgive Brent

Ms. Herdy, I recently saw your Ted Talk, “Have you ever met a monster” and wanted to thank you for sharing your experiences and insights. What a story. And what an inspiration in the woman who was able to forgive Brent by seeing him as a victim as well- and having the clarity to do so in spite of her being his victim!

Thank you for all that you are doing in bringing attention to such a serious societal problem. I also want to share an interesting article with you that discusses the question you mentioned in your talk.

Lorelei

December 29, 2017

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What I Said During the TEDx Talk: Have You Ever Met a Monster? Part I

Note from Amy: A woman contacted me the other day and said she would love to have the transcript of what I said during my TEDx talk.

So as not to overwhelm readers, I will post it in excerpts, starting with this first one:

Have you ever met a monster? someone so scary they alerted the reptilian part of your brain?

One morning as I was going to my job as a criminal justice reporter in Denver, I stepped into a crowded elevator, faced front and got the sense someone behind me in that was watching me. I glanced over my shoulder to see this man staring at me in a very calculating way, with cold shark eyes. So I stared back—and my look said, Rude person! and he didn’t drop his eyes, so I ended that contest and turned back around, alarm bells sounding in my head. I instantly decided I didn’t want him to know which floor was mine, so at the next stop just before the doors came together I darted out at the last minute, and then I flew up the stairs and ran into the newsroom, my heart pounding.

The fear of monsters is instinctive.

In Denver in 2005 reports of a serial rapist had residents so frightened some were carrying baseball bats.

Police released his name, Brent Brents, and the media scrambled to find out whatever we could on this guy. A reporter at the rival newspaper got Brents’ sister in Arkansas on the phone, and she said, “He deserves whatever he gets” before hanging up. One sentence, but, we’d been scooped!

Get thee on a plane to Arkansas, my editors said. Find his family, and get them to talk. So I did. Brent’ mother described him as willful, intelligent. He had grown up hunting and fishing, ran track, wrestled, boxed. He had a learning disorder, and became frustrated, then angry, in school. He started smoking pot and drinking at age 10, and that’s when he began beating his mother. When he was 13 he pulled a switch on a railroad track and was sent to juvenile detention, where he was in and out until the age of 18 when he was convicted of raping two children. He served sixteen years in prison before being released without supervision.

His sister mentioned that Brent had a lot of anger toward their father, who had died the year before.

So I turned to the mom and said, I’m sorry to ask, but this is a standard question when someone sexually abuses others. Was Brent ever abused as a child?

There was a long pause. And then looking down she said, Brent makes up all kinds of lies.

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