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Evin Prison  


Darkness settles in as you rest your head on your pillow.  You yawn and drift into a state of sub-consciousness that's half a world away.  It's as real as real can be.  Your wife slips on a new pair of slacks and blouse, puts on her make-up, grabs a cup of coffee, and heads off to work.  Upon arriving at work, unexpectedly and abruptly two armed uniformed men slam her against the front fender of her car.  With hand-cuffs pinching her wrists, she's thrown into a van and driven to Evin Prison.  Her crime?  She's wearing make-up and slacks.  


Two weeks pass and you hear nothing.  Day after day tension mounts.  You wonder what's coming next.  Around the water cooler outside your office door you vent your anger against the tyrants who run the country.   


Four weeks pass and still no word.  Silence is a game tyrants play.  They mess with your head, hoping you'll cave in and submit or else just go insane so they can lock you up for good.  Either is fine with them. 


While sitting at your desk attempting to work under the weight of fear and uncertainty, the phone rings. Your 11 year old daughter isn't in school.  Her teacher wonders why, and so do you.     


Moments later the phone rings again.  "My dear friend", a deep mysterious voice mutters slowly.  "I just thought you'd like to know we've got your daughter locked up in Evin Prison.  One of your co-workers turned you in.  You will now pay for your rants at the water cooler". 


"My dear friend"?  You explode.  You throw your  cordless phone across the room. It breaks into pieces as it hits the wall.  Bursting into uncontrollable anger you yell, "damn those clerics and the thugs they anoint to dictate our lives"!     


Prior to your wife's disappearance, the two of you helped a poor girl who could hardly afford to feed herself let alone her two children.  From time to time she sold herself to the authorities and clerics who run the country.  She wasn't happy about that but the proceeds of her service bought milk and bread for her children.  Her fate now torments you.  She was arrested.  Her crime?  Adultery.  Her punishment?  Evin Prison.  Her fate?  Rape, thrown into a hole in the ground, buried up to her neck, and then stoned.  Stones flew from all directions, even from those who benefited  from her service.  Her head became one messy ball of blood.  Such a pathetic excuse for a young lady could not be tolerated in a theocracy such as ours.  There's no salvation for someone like her.    


Eight weeks pass.  Your body is breaking out in irritating rashes because of the overwhelming stress.  Finally another call comes from the mystery voice.  "My friend, come, take the body.  Bury your little slut of a daughter.  We can't stand to look at her ugly face ".    


"Burry her"?  Severe pain strikes deep into your chest.   


"And by the way", the mystery voice says, "don't comfort yourself with the idea your daughter is in heaven.  She lost her virginity to a guard in Evin Prison before she faced the firing squad.  Only virgins go to heaven my friend, and your daughter is no virgin".


You're numb, and void of any feeling.  You lose consciousness for a few brief moments.  If not for your burning anger, you would have fainted. They raped your 11 year old daughter before blowing her head off.  One bullet would have done the job, but no, they had to use five or six high powered machine guns to kill one little innocent girl. You've just paid the price for your rants, and you still have no word about your wife.  Falling  face first to the floor you wonder how things ever got this bad.   


You awake in bed sheets drenched in sweat.  It seemed so real.  It takes a while, but you eventually fall back to sleep, only to find yourself in western Europe in the year 1649.  You were a staunch Catholic before the Christian Reformation came to town.  Tyrannical religious leaders dictating your life was all you knew.  Freedom from tyranny never entered your mind, but now, at least in your soul, you are free.  No one could ever rob you of that.      


In your dream you pass away long before the seeds of freedom planted by the Reformation could take root in society.  However, generations later, in a land far away, those born from your lineage would stand on the banks of the Potomac River and on the hillsides of the Commonwealth of Virginia .  With hands raised, they thank God for their new found freedom.  In unison they sing, "let freedom reign".  Freedom to speak and to live under the guidance of God was now unfolding before their very eyes in a national experiment never seen quite like this before.      


You wake again, wondering what this all means.  You've just seen tyranny in contrast with freedom.  Your head begins to clear and an irrational reality sets in.  It's now obvious, your nation is beginning to lose the reason for its very existence.      


You've watched the cable news channels for years.  People have openly, routinely, and relentlessly, criticized government authorities without reprisal or retaliation.  You've never been arrested for your rants on Face Book, but little by little that's beginning to change.  And by the way, isn't change what you voted for?    


It's now clear.  Western nations have experienced freedom because they have embraced the Reformation, a Christian revival.  Nations who failed to embrace the Reformation have never experienced this freedom.  Bondage to religious or atheistic tyranny is the norm for them. 


Your stomach is now sick with disgust.  The west, your nation included, is forsaking that which made you free.  In the name of tolerance, attempts to make peace with the intolerant are made.  How weird!  They compromise the Christian consensus, thinking such compromise will produce peace.  You know it won't.  It never will.  Tyranny will rise like a blinding and irritating cloud of smoke when truth is sacrificed on the altar of compromise.  It hits you like a hundred mile an hour fast ball right between your eyes.  Peace in the name of tolerance will surely back-fire.  Clones of Evin Prison may soon appear in towns near you. 


Post Script  


Evin Prison is in northwest Tehran, Iran.  Those who oppose, or even appear to oppose, the Islamic Revolution and it's leaders are imprisoned, tortured, raped, and killed within its walls.   


On June 23, 2003, Iranian/Canadian photo-journalist Zahra Kazemi was arrested for simply taking pictures of Evin Prison.  There, she lived out her final few days.  The Islamic Revolutionary Guard claimed she died of a stroke.  It was subsequently learned that she had massive head wounds.  It was also learned that she too was raped before she was apparently clobbered to death.  Countless critics of the Islamic Revolution have suffered a deadly fate in Evin Prison.  Now, in the name of tolerance, we attempt to negotiate peace with the intolerant.  I'm reminded of Jeremiah 8:11, "peace peace, when there is no peace".       


I close with a portion of a popular song from the late 1960's.  "For What It's Worth", sung by Buffalo Springfield, was an anthem of the failed hedonistic revolution of that generation.  Little did the hippies realize that what they were rebelling against was that which gave them the freedom to rebel in the first place.    


"Paranoia strikes deep.
Into your life it will creep.
It starts when you're always afraid.
You step out of line,
The man comes and takes you away.
We better stop, hey, what's that sound,
Everybody look what's going down".


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