Seven years ago I posted this exchange between the followers of a woman named Sherry Shriner, her followers and I. At the time, I was astounded by the sheer insanity I saw on her Facebook page (I'm still blocked from viewing it, by the way) and amused by the interplay that resulted from my attempts to locate a modicum of logic in their bizarre belief system.
In a nutshell, Sherry Shriner believes in every conspiracy theory regarding aliens, monsters and secret societies out there. She uses the Bible as a way of combining them all. Soon after the reposted exchange, I decided to start investigating this individual to see if she was insane or a con artist. I wrote several articles, finally arriving at a disturbing conclusion: She was both. It is indeed possible to believe one's own delusions and still be a manipulative confidence artist. Charles Manson and Jim Jones come to mind.
Shriner does it in a post-modern online way but she still leads a cult of unstable wackjobs desperate to believe what she says ties up all the things that make them uncomfortable or uncertain and presents them in a neat, prepackaged bow. Most of my articles are, sadly, no longer available but as I published them, I went from outright amusement to deep concern. Cults have always fascinated me. I actually began a novel featuring feuding cults fighting over a captured alien. But Sherry Shriner always struck we as someone potentially dangerous and now I know why.
Somebody has died because of her insanity.
It's not funny anymore. This woman needs to be institutionalized right alongside her equally mentally ill followers.