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INV4ST IN THE T’UTUX8 Of The Texas Observer WITH CHARITABLE REMAINDER UNITARY TRUST. THAT’S A PRETTY HIGH-FALUTIN’ NAME for when you make a bequest while you are still alive. TIRST” gooD THING is that you get the charitable deduction up front and the income from your gift for life. Then, when that inevitable thing besides taxes finally happens, CANOTHER. goOD THING WILL cl-LIPPEA: Your gift will help ensure that The Texas Observer keeps on fighting for justice and equality for all Texans. If you want to give The T,7as Observer a gift that keeps on giving or have questions about your options or how to set up a charitable remainder unitary trust, give us a call: The Texas Observer 512-477-0746 Oc& 800-939-6620 v apftw.. ..ecera Mi tt a.* HE PEOPL4s , Pitittiv -k$ orwoRROZO .07 licer though death was tempting her to doubt it could take place. The cold hands and face. The blue-tinged lips and fingertips. The gaping bloody hole. Those symptoms … the presence of death … were the devil’s lies. God always responded to prayer. And if he didn’t, who’s fault was that? Not God’s. Look for it elsewhere …” “She really believed she could raise him from the dead,” Wilson told me. “And I know that the Pentecostals absolutely believe it. And if you can’t do it, it shows your lack of faith. It’s similar to faith healingthe faith makes you well. So it’s a problem with you if you can’t do it, not with God.” This tenet of Wilson’s ancestral faiththe placement of guilt for life’s cruelest events squarely on the shoulders of the suffereris part of what causes Wilson, at the book’s conclusion, to crumble. One of Holy Roller’s few weaknesses is that it fails to make absolutely explicit what happens at this critical moment of truth. The reader is told that movie star Anthony Perkins \(of Psycho and tells her how the two of them are going to act. She writes, “My head’s insides moved an inch. My handwritten message in the dirt switched from right leaning to left leaning. And in the weeds and later under the chinaberry trees \(the shedding, in my house.” Wilson apparently means by this abstraction that she experienced a psychic break. “What happened is, I was nine years old, and I believed everything they told me:’ Wilson says. “I was a very gullible kid. And God got to be a little too violent and a little too angry, so I developed this other personality. It totally took over. … The main thing about Anthony is that he was stoic. He couldn’t be reached by anything. … It was almost like I was invisible. That’s how I survived until I was probably 20,” which is when Wilson says she consciously rejected the religion of her youth. “I wrassled God to the floor:’ she says. “And when I did, suddenly I had this pure silence. And I knew from then on I would never ever take in another thing that I did not personally know to be true. And that’s the way I live. I don’t care what anyone says to me. If it doesn’t ring true to me, if I don’t experience it as true, I reject it.” Miraculously, Wilson hasn’t become a nihilist. Instead, that rejection empowered her faith on behalf of the environment. “I’m a mystic:’ she says now “I think everything is alive. That’s the part of the Pentecostal faith that I retaineda sense of the invisible world. Even when I do my activism, I take action with a certain confidence that the universe is working in a positive manner. And I may not know what’s going to happen or how things will work out, but I know they will … “I believe man is ultimately good and that we are evolving;’ Wilson adds. “That’s why I’ll step out here with no money and insurmountable oddsif you do activism, the odds always seem insurmountable. But if you really believed that, you’d turn and walk away from it. I don’t. I have no doubt in my mind that good will come of it. I have no doubt. I’m positive.” Contributing writer Emily DePrang lives in Pearland. 22 THE TEXAS OBSERVER OCTOBER 31, 2008