Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Capturing The Friedmans

The 2003 documentary Capturing the Friedmans, about a son and father who abused children in their home-based computer classes is a freak show. 

In some ways it acts as a spearhead for false memory syndrome (a discredited psychiatric "syndrome") to undermine children's testimony despite the admission of the the protagonists Jesse and Arnold Friedman to abusing children. The film's director Andrew Jarecki does a good job of muddying the waters as the above clip reveals. 

The full documentary is here on Youtube but cannot be embedded. It's well worth watching. My own feelings are the most insincere characters are David Friedman who changed his name to David Kaye and is a professional clown entertaining the children of the rich famous in New York, and pulling in six figures for it; and the the only victim to record his testimony on film identified anonymously and silhouetted as Gregory Dough. Both of them come across as more insincere than Jesse and Arnold who admitted to abusing children.

One striking element in this predominantly Jewish movie, is the memory correlation with german prison camp survivors often called the holocaust. I was on a train, I was in trauma, I was in a prison camp against my will, people died and therefore the gas chambers are real and so is the figure of 6 million.