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Features Archive:

2011 Archive:
 Paranormal Peeps and Holiday Traditions
December 29, 2011

Littlest Mummy (A Christmas Story) By Richard Senate
December 21, 2011

Wartime UFOs with Mack Maloney
December 20, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Electronic Voice Phenomenon (EVP) with Mike Markowicz
December 13, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Ghostly Lowdown on American Horror Story By Deonna Kelli Sayed
December 7, 2011

The Curse of H.H. Holmes with Jeff Mudgett
November 29, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Paranormal Roundtable with David Rountree and Paul Browning By Deonna Kelli Sayed
November 17, 2011

Legends Are Born in October By Christopher Balzano
October 17, 2011

Halloween Nation with Lesley Pratt Bannatyne
October 11, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

The Haunting of Major Graham Mansion by Deonna Kelli Sayed
October 5, 2011

The Hunt for Ohio's River Styx Ghost Train by Ken Summers
September 29, 2011

Evidence of Ancient Aliens with Peter Robbins
September 27, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Southern New England Haunts with Andrew Lake
September 20, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Pop Paranormal Culture and Middle Eastern Legends with Deonna Kelli Sayed
September 13, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Legend Tripping with AdventureMyths by Deonna Kelli Sayed
September 12, 2011

Out of Place in Time and Space with Lamont Wood
September 6, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

TAPS Academy Comes to Town by Deonna Kelli Sayed
September 1, 2011

The Amityville House with Christopher Quaratino (Lutz)
August 30, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Springfield, Missouri’s 150th by Debra Prosser
August 26, 2011

Column - regular feature

Paranormal Pastoring by Rev. Sherrie James
August 22, 2011

Live-ish From the Haunted Fearing Tavern
August 16, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

In Defense of Paranormal Reality TV by Deonna Kelli Sayed
August 8, 2011

Gone From Sight by Debra Prosser
August 3, 2011

Column - regular feature

The Psychology of Being Watched By Wayne Harris-Wyrick
August 2, 2011

The Paranormal Pastor Robin Swope
July 26, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Living Voices: Dr. Dave Oester By Deonna Kelli Sayed
July 20, 2011

Living Voices: Richard Senate By Bobby Garcia
July 13, 2011

What's in a Name? Let's Try "Paranormalogy!" By Rev. Sherrie James
July 6, 2011

Caged and Staged by Katie Mullaly
June 23, 2011

The Haunted Dibbuk Box with Jason Haxton
June 14, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Spring of Culture at Ghostvillage - Ghost Hunter's Grant Wilson
June 13, 2011

The Haunted Book by Lee Prosser
June 10, 2011

Column - regular feature

Raymond Cass - EVP Pioneer by Bobby Garcia
June 9, 2011

Illinois Haunts with Michael Kleen
June 7, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Spring of Culture at Ghostvillage - Artist Paulina Cassidy
June 2, 2011

Alien/Human Hybrids with Barbara Lamb
May 31, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Spring of Culture at Ghostvillage - Author Marley Harbuck Gibson
May 26, 2011

Biblical Apocalypse Prophecies with Dr. Robert M. Price
May 24, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

America's Strangest House by Deonna Kelli Sayed
May 23, 2011

Two-Year Anniversary Special
May 17, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Spring of Culture at Ghostvillage - Artist Jackie Williams
May 13, 2011

Wiliford by Lee Prosser
May 12, 2011

Column - regular feature

The Spirit Box with Psychic Chris Fleming
May 10, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Violating the 13th Amendment Paranormal Style by Reverend Sherrie James
May 6, 2011

Inside the Church of Satan with Joshua P. Warren
May 3, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Spring of Culture at Ghostvillage - Terri J. Garofalo, creator of Entities-R-Us
April 28, 2011

Haunted San Francisco with Loyd Auerbach
April 26, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Future Predictions with Dr. Louis Turi
April 12, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Spring of Culture at Ghostvillage - H.C. Noel, Creator of Tara Normal
April 7, 2011

Pennsylvania Bigfoot with Eric Altman
April 5, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Spontaneous Human Combustion with Larry Arnold
March 29, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Japanese Earthquake Ghosts, 2011 by Lee Prosser
March 28, 2011

Column - regular feature

UFOs with Stanton Friedman
February 8, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Ophiuchus with Astrologer Christopher Renstrom
February 1, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Crashing the Ghost Adventures Shoot
January 11, 2011

30 Odd Minutes - webcast

Marjorie Myrene Hart by Lee Prosser
January 3, 2011

Column - regular feature

May 6, 2011

A Paranormalogy Commentary:
Violating the 13th Amendment Paranormal Style

By Reverend Sherrie James

I had a discussion recently with a colleague. She was talking about the requirements by many historical sites and inns that ghosts hunters and paranormal investigators must sign documentation promising that they will not choose to cleanse, attempt to cross over, or to assist ghosts in any form in leaving the premises. Being a minister who does her best to assist any living or dead human who asks for help, I found that problematic and rather unethical.

I can understand the sites' points of view though. Many locations are businesses and exist to make money. If they have no ghosts, the paranormal teams and individuals will stop getting evidence. Many people will stop coming to their locations. A historical site often depends on the number of visitors and publicity to literally exist. Many locations get new visitors based solely on the possibility of seeing or making a contact with a ghost or a spirit. If the ghosts leave, the historical site suffers. If the site loses one of its biggest tourist attractions, it may have to close down. These sites may be attempting to preserve history by preserving their historical ghosts.

But are these sites actually violating the 13th Amendment of the Constitution of the United States with this requirement?

This anti-slavery and involuntary service amendment states the following: "Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction. Section 2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation."

I know that some people are rolling their eyes or chuckling at this point, but I would invite you to actually think about this. By denying the ghosts assistance and the opportunity to transition in whatever form that works for them, are these sites not in fact enslaving certain ghosts? (We will get into the freedom of religion debate at another time even though it mirrors this same argument.) In the very least, are these sites not forcing certain ghosts to remain perpetually as their servants? I recognize this as a mote point with residual haunts. A residual haunt is more like a time loop.

No interaction or awareness seems possible or that we can detect and perceive at this time. Just a repeated and perpetual motion of action or event occurs. If the ghost involved has total free will, this also is a mote point in the slavery and involuntary servitude argument.

Some people believe that many ghosts and spirits can travel where they wish. They can follow investigators home. They can hitch rides in cars. These ghosts are free to go wherever they want and do what they choose within their individual abilities and limitations. This could include the possibility of the ghost finding someone on his or her own to help him or her to transition if he or she needed assistance.

But what of the ghosts who appear to be aware and interactive, but are unable to go where they want? These ghosts may be considered to be mentally or metaphysically challenged. They might be considered to be suffering from an unknown and not understood phobia that may be similar in ways to agoraphobia (the fear of open spaces, crowds or uncontrolled social conditions). What of the ghosts who seem to be attached to places or to objects almost in an obsessive/compulsive fashion? These ghosts may want to leave but they cannot or believe that they cannot. Do these ghosts have any rights? Should these ghosts be protected under the 13th Amendment?

Before you judge, consider this example: An African-American slave dies, but remains attached to a historical house for an unknown reason. She is aware of what is going on around her and even attempts to interact. She is so sad and visitors often get EVPs of a female crying out, "Help me!Ó" She would love to be freed to move on to a better destination but she simply does not know how. Because of the historical site's requirements of refusing to allow anyone to assist her, she is forced to do the current master of the property's bidding, which is to remain. She is being forced against her will to haunt the site for years to come and perhaps for all eternity without the possibility of ever gaining her freedom because she is denied the opportunity to be offered assistance. In essence, she remains a slave despite the 13th Amendment. If you were her great-great granddaughter, would you be OK with that?

Should anyone have a right to deny any human, living or dead, the right to be helped or to be freed, especially when it is requested?

Now, consider this: You find yourself in this exact same condition when you die. Do you think that you should have the right to transition? What if you cannot figure out how to do that on your own? Do you think that anyone should have the right to refuse to allow you to be assisted if you wanted and needed help? (Sigh.) Ah, but if this situation were merely that complicatedly simple!

Not everyone feels, believes or thinks the same about ghosts. Some people do not care about the dead or even believe in the existence of ghosts. Other people hold various levels of respect for ghosts and spirits. Certain individuals claim all spirits are actually demons and should be exorcised. A person may feel that he or she does not know enough about ghosts to make any informed decision. For yet others, it must remain only about the bottom line in order to preserve the site or business for future generations. Since those who are mediums, those who conduct cleanings, and/or those who act as exorcists vary so widely in their methods and in what they believe happens to the ghosts during their rituals, many owners or directors of sites might be confused as to what should be allowed to be done in permitting the ghosts to be assisted. Thus the answer apparently has become for many locations that it is simpler just to refuse to allow any assistance at all to be allowed to take place. But again, is that a violation of the 13th Amendment? So many additional questions flash into speculative focus when considering this topic. Should anyone have the right to attempt to force a ghost to leave against his or her wills? Is that not as bad as forcing them to stay? In some cases, the owners of the properties may actually be protecting the ghosts. Would some individuals who would try to cleans or exorcize the property actually be enslaving or harming the ghosts by acting against the ghosts' will to stay? In addition, should the owners or directors be forced to allow a ritual on their property for which they might not approve or believe in? What of the property owners' rights? I do not want to be one of those people who brings up a complicated issue just to muddy the waters.

Thus I will propose one possible solution. At least once a year, historical sites and haunted businesses should allow an Assistance Service for any ghosts on the premises. The owner or director of the site evaluates the methods to be used during the service to make sure the rights of the ghosts will be respected and that any ghost has the invitation to transition but no one will be forcing him or her to leave. Leaders of the Assistance Service should rotate yearly between various clergy and spiritual leaders to allow the possibility of whatever faith system the ghost or spirit may resonate with to be presented. In this way, at least once a year, any ghost present has the possible possibility of transitioning to a better place. This Assistance Service could be a very positive and even profitable compromise.

The historical site or business can get free advertising by publicizing the event as a type of memorial/transition service and inviting the public to attend. Perhaps past owners of the property or their descendents could be invited to attend to offer freedom to whoever may be there. Out of the respect for the dead, the site also might option to make it a private service. Then the site could put out a press release about it, after or before the fact, as positive publicity about how the site respects the dead. In addition, the reality is that even with the service, nothing may change. (Well, except for the perception of the site by people who actually care about the ethical treatment of ghosts and who do not view them as just casual entertainment and venues for profitable slavery.) Again, this Assistance Service should not affect residual haunts. And again, some ghosts may choose to stay. What is important is that those ghosts who desire it will have an opportunity to experience their freedom and to move on, if they so desire. These sites need to recognize this as a healthy thing because hurting ghosts can turn into angry ghosts who can attempt to harm people and potentially get the sites sued. The other thing is that when a ghost vacates a site, the speculation is that other ghosts may move in. These new ghosts may be even more active than the previous spirits, which could prove to be a moneymaker for the site. The expectation would be that an Assistance Service and the recognition of the 13th Amendment by paranormal locations would be a win-win situation for both the living and the dead.

So are ghosts actually protected under the 13th Amendment? I have no idea. That is a playful debate for lawyers. What I do know is that as this new science of Paranormalogy (a term that I have coined to describe the study of all aspects of the paranormal. This includes not only its scientific and metaphysical components, but the study of the paranormal's sociological, ethical, and cultural impact) emerges that more ethical, religious and legal considerations will continue to arise.

The Rev. Sherrie James works in the paranormal and religious communities to help bridge the gap between religion and the paranormal. She writes and she speaks at conferences and on the radio to help educate about the spiritual and ethical aspects of paranormalogy and about negative hauntings. As part of her ministry, Rev. Sherrie acts as a paranormal crisis intervention specialist, and occasionally as an exorcist, as she assists clients and their families who are experiencing especially challenging or negative haunts. For more information, please go to her website, or write to her at

2014 Haunted New England Wall Calendar by Jeff Belanger photography by Frank Grace
Check out the 2014 Haunted New England wall calendar by Jeff Belanger and photography by Frank Grace!

Paranormal Conferences and Lectures
Don't miss the following events and lectures:

Jeff Belanger and “The Bridgewater Triangle” at Dedham Community Theatre - April 6, 2014 9:00PM

The Spirits of the Mark Twain House - Hartford, Connecticut - April 12, 2014

Paracon Australia - East Maitland, New South Wales, Australia - May 10-12, 2014