Tag Archives: dishonesty

A Reply to Robert Dante’s Article

Let me start by pointing to the article in which I am about to reply. It was written by Robert Dante and is entitled When Having Principles Hurt.

There needs to be a few things cleared up and I will allow you to decide what’s the truth as I post my entire OP and comment on it piece by piece. The first part of my OP on my personal Facebook page stated the following:

I have refused to do business with people who said they intended to use my whips on other consenting adults. They kindly took their business elsewhere and didn’t involve lawyers or the government. That’s how free, civilized people handle such things.

Since at least 2002, I have stated on my website publicly that I do not endorse nor condone the use of a whip on another person and do not knowingly make orders for those purposes (other than martial arts perhaps). This should not be news to anyone who’s ever looked at the page on my site where I have my policies posted, especially someone who’s known me since my early days online selling whips.

I have, in the past, refunded orders and not taken orders of those who told me they planned to use the whips for BDSM. I do not recall Robert saying he intended to use my whips for anything like that, and I don’t ask what people plan to do for conscience sake. The few times I have refused to do an order was when I was explicitly told the order was going to be used in a setting with which I am not comfortable being associated.

What people do with the whips I sell is their business, but again, my preference is to make whips for sporting, work, and martial arts purposes. I recall at one time when Bullwhip.org actually posted with a maker’s link that they did not do BDSM work, and asked everyone to respect that. And for the record, all I have ever received is respect on this matter, until now.

I have never sought after that market. That there are cowboys who go to conventions that do it is of no consequence to me. I’m not into it. Never have been, never will be. Sorry, that’s just me. Robert says he’s surprised I didn’t know what he did with the whips? Well, I’m equally surprised he didn’t know where I stand on this! I’ve never made it a secret.

And now for the rest of that most terrible, offensive, and misunderstood part of my OP:

Here’s the deal: If you use government to force Christian bakers to cater gay weddings against their conscientious objections, then we will have to force gay bakers to cater Westboro Baptist events against their conscience. How about forcing Jews to cater neo-Nazi events? Forcing black folks to cater KKK events? etc.. Think about it. (Not to mention the fact I don’t want someone preparing my food after I’ve taken them to court!)

My only point here is that government forcing people to do business with others against their values is a slippery slope. It may sound like a good idea when it benefits you or people with your shared values, but what happens when that same government force is applied all around equally? Thus, this is my reason for using these other examples.

My comparisons here were never, ever meant to equate gays to Nazis or the KKK, but simply to point out that making Christians/Muslims/others cater weddings against their religious beliefs (recognizing that freedom of religion is historically one of America’s most cherished ideals!), it will open the door to people like Westboro Baptist suing gay bakers to bake them cakes against their will. (And don’t think WBC won’t try!) What is so hard to understand about this? Is this not a legitimate concern? Or can’t we think beyond the most recent media spawned outrage?

Dante writes,

What Rhett has done is the equivalent of saying that because someone likes oral sex, he/she is prone to walk down the sidewalk biting people at random.

No, I wrote nothing of the sort, nor did I imply anything like that! This is just slanderous and makes absolutely no sense to me. It’s not even a logical inference to make from anything I wrote.

Would Robert –now wanting nothing to do with me because of my stance on this issue– want the government forcing him to buy my whips? I doubt it. My guess is he’d rather take his business elsewhere and certainly wouldn’t waste time, or money, trying to drag me into court to make him a new set of whips exclusively for BDSM. And that’s the very point I’m trying to make! Let’s keep people free to make decisions to buy or not buy, sell or not sell, on our own, without dragging the government into it!

Robert, I’m sorry it has come to this. I wish you well.

Update: Robert has replied to this article. Please click here to read it.

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A Plea for Integrity

After you read this, please see my follow-up article as well!

I really wish I wasn’t having to write this article. But, as a whipmaker who has been selling whips online since 2001, I think there comes a time when someone has to “call a time-out” and address something that is allegedly going on within our small community.

Dishonesty in Our Midst

It has come to my attention that there’s a whipmaker selling nylon whips that is being less than honest in his product descriptions. This was discovered by someone who’s first experience with nylon was with a whip I made. The customer liked the whip and started ordering other styles from other vendors.

The customer ordered a 7ft nylon bullwhip from someone that advertised it as having 2 plaited bellies. Noticing something was amiss, the customer did what most would not, and opened it up and found that the whip had no plaited bellies at all! In fact, it contained what probably amounted to several rolls of wrapped black electrical tape!

For the record, I do not know who the offender is and I told the customer I didn’t want to know, at least for now.

I also know that the offender is apparently NOT a newbie; he’s part of the “varisity team.” I think this makes the allegations even more disappointing. I expect this sort of thing from the fly-by-nights and hucksters on eBay, but not from among the better known nylon plaiting establishment. Varsity whipmakers should have enough personal integrity to be honest in their descriptions and sell what they claim to sell. I honestly don’t have a problem with someone making whips with tape bellies, but they should describe and sell it as a wrapped tape belly -and price it accordingly! Don’t say it has “2 plaited bellies,” when in reality, it contains a dozen rolls of wrapped electrical tape!

(What I do know for certain, based on the information I received, was that it IS NOT Steve Huntress at Noreast Whips and that the whipmaker is based in the United States) [edited 10/15/2013 @ 3:24pm]

Those of us who have been around for a decade or more selling synthetic whips will recall a time when nylon was somewhat frowned upon in the whip cracking community.  Many of us have worked very hard to produce the best product we can in order to get synthetic whips to the place they are today. And that’s the point, we did our best and we were honest in our dealings: that’s why we’re still around and nylon whips so widely used today!

If there are people within the whipmaking community deceiving their buyers and turning out garbage, it’s inevitably going to hurt those of us who have worked very hard to get where we are.. In fact, the customer who brought this to my attention said that if the tape-bellied bullwhip had been their first experience with nylon, she would have not bought any more synthetic whips! Think about that for a second my fellow synthetic whipmakers!

To the person who is guilty of this charge:

12 of these wrapped ≠ 2 plaited bellies

12 of these wrapped ≠ 2 plaited bellies

I don’t know who you are, but I realize you could be someone I know; maybe even someone I number among my friends in the whipmaking community.  I sincerely hope you will make amends, or at the very least, make your descriptions match what you are really selling. You’re only going to end up hurting your own reputation as people figure out what you’re doing. You have everything to lose and nothing to gain from these deceitful practices.

You’re very lucky this customer is not willing to see you publicly thrashed. I believe you truly deserve to be called into account for this practice. I guarantee that if you continue to do this, it won’t be long before someone else finds out and exposes you. Do yourself a favor and do things right.

You shall not steal; you shall not deal falsely; you shall not lie to one another.” -Leviticus 19: 11(ESV)

“You shall do no wrong in judgment, in measures of length or weight or quantity. You shall have just balances, just weights, a just ephah, and a just hin: I am the Lord your God,…”  Leviticus 19: 35-36 (ESV)

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,” -Colossians 3: 23 (ESV)

“A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favor is better than silver or gold.” -Proverbs 22: 1 (ESV)