Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Islands in the sun (or Rum, Sodomy and the Lash or land of rape and honey or you can take the boy out of an island but...)

Can you imagine discovering an Island in the middle of the south pacific? Just you, your bestfriends and a couple of hot island girls that you met along your travels? This land is essentially lawless, thats fine because you are all law abiding men (for the most part), you no longer have to answer to a boss (he was disposed of earlier) and its up to you when you work, when you rest, when you procreate. Its a veritable heaven...

This island is Pitcairn Island located right in the middle of the south pacific and lord does it hang heavy with vicious history.

In the year 1789 a man named Fletcher Christian tossed his commanding officer (the ships captain) on to a raft as demanded by his fellow officers. The unity of the ships men that had been created by the mutiny was short lived upon reaching the Island of Tahiti. This story has been depicted a million times by Hollywood, one of the more popular versions involves the anti semitic actor Mel Gibson as Fletcher Christian. What is never really acknowledged is the story that occurs shortly after the mutiny...

At one point Fletcher Christian had found more than half of the Bounty's crew in support of him and his cause, upon his dispersal from the Island of Tahiti he had only 8 of the crew, 6 Tahitian men, 11 women and 1 child. Thankfully it was a short trip to Pitcairn Islands. As treason was considered a high crime punishable by death (abandoning the navy was considered treason) the new colonialists burned their ship in order to evade detection. A new home was found and the crew quickly settled in.

It makes one wonder why on earth would one agree to go on a trip, particularly a trip where you dont intend on coming back, where the men outnumber the women... Sailors are like dogs in heat at the best of times, one can only imagine how they react when they are gazing upon their neighbours wife, knowing that they are never going to meet another woman as they are on an uninhabited island out in the middle of the pacific ocean. Needless to say that the happiness was short lived. It was not long before one of the crew was responsible for breaking up a marriage between two Tahitians and a small scale war commenced. By the end of it in 1793, all but four of the original ships crew, ten of the tahitian men and several children had been killed. The names of these four men are still used by the current inhabitents of the island (along with some of the names of the dead). This of course will be touched on later in the article as it would seem that tradition seems to carry with family name.

The remaining four men, John Adams, Edward Young, Matthew Quintall and William McCoy did what any man would do if they found themselves with some time on their hands...drink. Not unlike several places in the south pacific there were roots that could be distilled into very potent drinks (most common concoction/root being Kava). Its intoxicating effects soon ran amuck with the four sailors minds. Half of the remaining women on the Island were made in to concubines for their 'great white rulers', the other half took their children and created a fortress away from the camp. The first to go was William McCoy, the initiator of the drinking binge. So unsatisfied with the islands outcome he jumped off a cliff. Not long after Quintall became insane with the drink and began to threaten every living being on the island. Young and Adams soon hatched a plan. Quintall had to be done away with, they were not going to put to death by a drunken madman (unlike themselves, drunken gentlemen they were). It was a long bitter death, having nothing but crude tools on the Island, Quintalls life was extinguished by way of axe. After Quintalls death Young was taken in by the women and children (good idea, he has consumption, thats not infectious) and Adams lived by himself on the far end of the Island amongst the wreckage that had been created.

It was amongst the wreckage that Adams found the ships bible that had been taken ashore by one of the other ship members. Unfortunately for Adams, he was illiterate and it took the return of the women, children and Young for him to understand its words. Shortly after educating (of sorts) Adams Young passed away. Adams was then the only adult male on the Island. He continued to drink. It was hardly surprising that one morning Adams claimed that he had religious awakening and soon the small population began practicing christian services.

Over the next few years there would be brief points of contact with members of the British goverment. For the most part the Islands and their community would be ignored as there were more important home issues such as the Napoleonic wars and a variety of other bits and pieces. Some of the outside world contact they would have would even be with some Americans. These same Americans would lead the community to religious conversion, abandoning the Church of England, the small community of Pitcairn would become Seventh Day Adventists.

Still today you see the names Brown, Christian, Adams, Young, McCoy amongst the islanders. It would also seem that not only did they carry on their names but they carried on their brutal legacies.

In 2004 seven of the 45 islanders stood trial for sexual abuse dating back almost 40 years. The islanders were hand in their guns as there were concerns that a riot might brake out during the proceedings. Several of the accused included the islands mayor Steve Christian (a descendent of Fletcher Christian) and his own son, Randy. Some of the charges had been sexual interference with a child under the age of eight as well as a variety of rapes. Six of the seven men were convicted, the islands magistrate, Jay Warren was set free. Just recently, October in fact, their convictions were upheld. Thankfully the most time anyone did was about 6 years. Fphew, thank god, godforbid they be punished for tradition. Speculation is rarely a good tool for investigation, however one might suspect that inbreeding may have been involved in all of this...

6 Comments:

Blogger Richard said...

Gotta say you keep it interesting on here... Great obscure topics... You gotta get into the fundementalist mormans in the US and Canada... Keep it close to home... Grab the book "Banner of Heaven"... The best book I read last year... But then again, I only read 6 books...

12:23 AM  
Blogger CeePee said...

Thanks man, i try, defo more to come. Ima see if i can buy that this weekend. Dl some "Big Love", youll love that shit, Harry Dean Stanton is INCREDIBLE. I love me some religion, especially if they are nutters.

10:22 PM  
Blogger Larissa_T said...

hey... hey!
WHO DOESNT POST OFTEN
don't you have anything political to say about anna nicole? COME ON!

3:23 PM  
Blogger CeePee said...

Ah Anna Nicole, yes, ive got alot to say about her, czech that other blog tho, suuuuuuuuuriously.

12:21 AM  
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1:22 AM  
Blogger yng said...

Bravo, religious nuts are simply the most engaging subject matter.

10:05 AM  

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