Over the past couple of days, I have been reminded of one of the harsh realities of the administrative structure of the traditional Golden Dawn. And that harsh reality is that unless you are at the top of the totem pile, often the only way that you can vote is to walk away.
Resign, demit, walk away, cease paying your dues---this is the sole form of protest that a member of so many esoteric Orders have. They have no voting rights. There is often no court of appeal; and if there is one, you are often forced to appeal to the very person that you are disagreeing with.
And sometimes even when you do have voting rights, all you can do is to walk away. Unless the majority agrees with you (three quarters or better of voting members), if the issue really irks you, sometimes walking away is the best option.
The reminder of this aspect of the system came in the form of an insult. Several people have started to say that those people who chose to walk away from the EOGD were cowards, that they should have stuck around to oppose Robert Zink. Other people have said that the Adepts of the EOGD should have gotten rid of Zink sooner; and by letting him stay in office, they were supporting his actions.
I will admit that I asked the question myself: What took you so long?!
But I knew the answer. The administrative structure of the system had to be a nightmare. My proof? Zink could do things that no one approved of.
The members who chose to walk away were not cowards. The members who stayed did not necessarily approve of Zink's actions. The administrative structure of the Inner Order of the EOGD was a nightmare. There were few, if any, choices for protest.
A large part of my proof for this is that a few years ago, I came across a pdf of some of the rules and regulations of the HOMSI Inner Order. (The Order had a laundry list of names---it is almost as long as the list of mottos that I have used in my magical career.) While others used the correspondence course and the Inner Order documents that had been pdfed to prove the weakness of HOMSI/EOGD, it was the Inner Order rules and regulations that scared me the most. If you read them, you could see who had all the power, that there were no voting members, and the court of appeal was to the last person you would want to talk to.
Another insult that has came up is that no other Golden Dawn Order spoke out about it, except for Griffin's HOGD/A&O. There were a couple of reasons for this. One was the trademark lawsuit---you did not speak out against your allies in the lawsuit. This did not prevent things being said in private. But publically, allies stuck together (reminds me of events in WWII).
Secondly, there was the fact that if you spoke openly about not liking Zink's method of running his Order, you were immediately labelled a "flame-warrior." It is hard to talk about how you really feel about events in the Golden Dawn community when you know that you are going a villian automatically. It is one of the after-effects of the great flame-war that those of us with strong opinions are in constant danger of being labelled as villians. By dumping water on the flame-war, it was assured that no one outside of the flame-police would be willing to talk about abuses of the other Orders. Way to go, flame-police! How does it feel to be a tool of the power-mad?
Again, the only choice you had was to walk away, and do something else. So yes, a lot of walking away and ignoring the problem occurred. It did not mean that people approved or were cowards, it merely meant that they were being realistic about the situation, especially how much weight their opinion actually carried.