It’s interesting the reaction some people can have to odd dates. I’m sure many of our readers saw the information swirling around the social media about 12-12-12 – the date, not the concert. The date is the last time for almost a century that the day, month and (the last half of) year will match. To most of us this was a passing curiosity but some people took it more seriously.
Like Brent Troy Bartel of Forth Worth, Texas. He believed the day to be a “holy day” and to celebrate it, carved a pentagram on his 6-year-old son’s back. Bartel called 911 to tell the dispatcher that he had “shed innocent blood,” according to a recording made of the call. The emergency dispatcher asked him to clarify so Bartel admitted he had “inscribed a pentagram on my son.” When the dispatcher asked him, “Why did you do that?” Bartel replied that it was “a holy day.”
Mere moments later, a call came in from the boy’s mother, who was calling from a neighbor’s house. She ran to the home to report on her husband’s activities and was crying and pleading for help. Police officers responded to the call shortly after midnight on the 12th. They found the boy shirtless and shivering with a large pentagram carved into his back and his blood smeared on the front door of the house. Police also found a box cutter at the scene and believe that it was used by Bartel to carve into his son’s flesh. The boy was taken to a local hospital for treatment of the, thankfully, shallow cuts while his father was arrested. Police reported that Bartel’s manner was ” flat and emotionless.”
Some numerologists think the day was auspicious, saying that there are more positives associated with the date than negatives. Some believed it to be a special moment of peak spiritual energy while others thought it might bring emotional turmoil, attacks and other nasty things. The date’s numbers, according to numerology, add up to the number three which is considered to be a lucky one, associated with the planet Jupiter. Most folk, though, just got on with it on that day.
The pentagram is an ancient symbol, sacred to many faiths including Wicca and Native American Shamanism. Despite misinformation (including in the article cited above), it is not a satanic symbol unless it is reversed — two points up — and even then, it is not always satanic. The number 5, which the pentagram embodies, is sacred to many religions and, with one point up, symbolizes the importance of spirit over the material world.
Mr. Bartel is now being held on a $500,00 bond, charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. His motives for harming his son are unclear and there has been no explanation as to why he thought 12-12-12 was a “holy day” or why he thought it necessary to “shed innocent blood.” Child Protective Services are investigating and, hopefully, will get to the bottom of things. In the meantime, the boy is with his mother.