Tag Archives: Newsy

Dating, Flirting, Asking Out Or Showing Romantic Interest In Age Of #metoo: In Defense Of Socially Awkward, Sexually Awkward Men

No it’s not a sex panic yet, but how do we avoid one; how do we appropriately punish the guilty and spare the innocent, spare people who just wanted to ask a girl out, who genuinely believed behavior to be consensual? How do we distinguish accurately between aspects like sexual regret and sexual misconduct, assault and rape; we don’t know but #metoo doesn’t either despite clamoring for social change, a society wide behavior shift. Read More

INDIE MUSIC NEWS

Time For An Age Of National Consent— Not So Fast— A Critique

It’s one of those things that looks good on paper but turns out disastrous in practice here’s why… Because unfortunately what Salon’s author fails to realize is, in addition to multitudes of the stories we are just hearing now about Moore, Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey and others being decades upon decades old, situations that would not take place in America today, probably not within the last 15 years, a national age of consent wouldn’t have stopped Roy Moore. Any more than it would have helped the journalist’s son assaulted by Kevin Spacey devastatingly traumatized by what was done to him or the despicable described scenario with Anthony Rapp. Not singularly highlighting stopping them had to involve the victims coming forward, making reports to authorities, alerting law enforcement to what was happening; the missing link to their downfall at the time not laws on the books or gaps in the legal code. Consent law, dealing primarily with legal age to sign documents, live independently absent being considered a runaway, juvenile delinquent, and yes have sex with another person discarding fear of being charged with rape or child molestation, wouldn’t have protected the majority of Bill Cosby’s victims realizing they were mostly of age, stopped the U.S. gymnastics doctor, a gymnastics doctor who played off what he was doing as medical massage, treatment. Why, of either set that weren’t of age by the guidelines across most of the country, they both had plausible reasons for their, even intimate looking, contact with minors. Bill Cosby was mentoring both of and underage aspiring actors, models, writers, could have easily told police parents had given verbal guardianship to him for the duration of an event, trip or job, which it appears for all intents and purposes they did; enough under the law through the 1960’s 70’s and early 80’s, especially to stave off curious questions of rarely inquiring police officers. Larry Nassar was USA gymnastics team doctor and massage is a legitimate medical treatment for athletes; parents of underage gymnasts not accompanying their children on such trips had signed release and guardianship forms congruent with state laws and years of tradition in the sport rendering the age of consent issue null and void related to what he did. Then to be exceedingly graphic, there’s the type of assault he used fondling and fingering these girls penetrating their anus or vagina via his fingers leaving no detectable evidence; further his victims were too ashamed, worried for their careers, sacrifices they and their parents had made to reach this far, to remotely consider speaking out, confused by his doctor status and was could and couldn’t be deemed medical treatment to ask questions outside their own heads. Consent that wouldn’t have hampered Jared Fogle in the slightest owing to his willingness to break the law from the outset, charged with possessing volumes of child porn tacked onto his egregious crossing state lines to have sex with a 17 year old prostitute; breaking the law herself by exchanging sex for money, fitting the pattern of focus on society’s undesirables to engage in sexual criminality. Consent ages not a preventive to both headline making high school student teacher ‘romantic’ relationships, never mind before they ran off with their students; teens invested in keeping them secret. Victim reluctance to come forward, to report lingering number 2 problem today in managing sexual abuse, assault, harassment and rape cases behind the sheer numbers of perpetrators, instances taking place; chronicling said abuse continues to be vastly underreported almost 20 years into the 21st century due to persistent social factors essentially both Moore and Spacey’s accusers, accusers of any prominent figure, local celebrity or known name come up against…. Though Amanda Marcotte makes clear what she thinks the age of consent should be (18) as well as the underage relationships we shouldn’t interfere with, sexual activity, exploration of similarly aged teenagers; she again naively misses the mark, that’s exactly what it has been used for in the past, continues to be used for at present and will be used for in the future by those crafting such laws, voting for local officials who support such measures under the misguided heading moral fiber. Conveniently forgetting too aid to dependent children being cut off at 17 throughout several states, which can result in teens thrown out of their homes at that time; how often America’s justice system rushes to charge teens as adults in violent crime, crimes particularly offensive to old fuddy-duddy politicians’ sensibilities. Namely ones entailing sex with each other, sex with someone they label their boyfriend, girlfriend that falls under fornication, AKA premarital sex; the shocking reality, to many of the same people, teens actually do willingly have sex comparatively age appropriately absent any abuse, predation or ‘older guy manipulation.’ Making a national age of consent markedly more complicated than first glance thoughts indicate, statements taking on exponential new meaning as you read her article comparing it to what is actually happening; she enfolded comments about writing consent laws to avoid punishing and prosecuting teens for ‘sending dirty pictures to each other’ because that’s precisely what district attorneys and state prosecutors were doing for years right up to present day penning of her missive. Cases this blog has reported on like Phillip Alpert who got angry at his girlfriend in the middle of the night and sent a naked photo she had given him to her entire e-mail list (by accident), not even remembering he had done so, but because he was 18 and his girlfriend was 16 he was charged with possession of child pornography. Convicted, despite both teens’ parents confirming their ongoing relationship and forced to register as a sex offender, attend classes with ‘fellow’ sex offenders, listening to topics like ‘why it’s bad to rape someone.’ Citizens willing to say that was 8 to 10 years ago things have changed, read the story of Zach Anderson (going viral in 2015) who used the dating app Hot or Not, known as a meeting space for hook-ups by persons seeking sex, sexual encounters with no strings attached to find a date, connected with a girl who stated she was 17; Anderson 19 having graduated high school the year before thinking little of the age difference. They chatted, swapped nude photos, agreed to meet; he picked her up at her house, went to a convenience store to buy condoms, went to a place to have sex, had sex, he hugged her and took her home. Only for police to show up at his work roughly 2 months later ultimately charging him with statutory rape and a slew of related charges, pleading guilty to 4th degree criminal sexual conduct; why, she was actually 14 not 17, lying about her age to register a profile on the adult portion of the site, lying to him to in order to meet up with him and have sex. Forcing him to serve 90 days in jail, go onto the sex offender registry, move out of his parent’s home because it’s 800 feet not 1,000 from a public boat access, forfeit his chosen career in IT because he was no longer allowed to use a computer or smartphone, barred from the local skate park due to it being a public place where children might be…. already starting 2018 brought with it a host of new laws taking effect, bringing us to Colorado whose legislature passed tougher penalties on what, teen sexting; a step backwards if there ever was one. Going an added step in the wrong direction ganging public reaction to a 2016 proposal that would reduce sexting to a misdemeanor offense, parents and teen advocates worried it would lead to more charges, precisely because it was no longer a devastating blotch on young criminal records…. Zach Anderson’s story hardly over seeing as he was rearrested for a probation violation after a lie detector and subsequent confession done to end his 2 year probation revealed he sat in a room with his brother’s 17 year old friend eating pizza and volunteered at a church function where a 17 year old girl also worked. Arrested by his Indiana probation officer under condition 20 stating incidental contact like being served at a McDonald’s by a server under age must reported within 24 hours, Zach did not; except his lawyer has found condition 20 is illegal, ruled unconstitutional siting precisely what the Reason blog author did, it turns mundane daily life into a legal minefield. That pitfall avoided in Indiana while his Michigan probation officer (he has 2 since his ‘crime’ crossed state lines between the 2 states and he resides in Indiana) was ready to release him slightly early him having been exceedingly compliant, going a step beyond in earning good grades; the judge said no, going as far as to give him another 6 months due back in court April of ‘18. Why, he violated the stipulation he only use the internet for school instead googling a filter for his fish tank and how to build a skateboard ramp, not to be confused with adult, legal porn, not horrifying child pornography, anything to do with children suggesting he has a budding pedophile problem, presents any danger whatsoever to society. Self-righteous adults who want to say well he can’t follow the rules, readers would doubtlessly heartily enjoy watching them try to live by his abbreviated yes, but still extensive list of restrictions, for 2 straight years having younger siblings who want friends over in what is their own house too, getting out of one’s own head and volunteering at church, looking up constructive things to do on the internet, opposite of getting into more trouble to have it bite them in the ass the way it has Zach Anderson… Pivoting back to adults bad, truthfully sexually predatory behavior exclusively, moreover it isn’t the age of consent that’s the largest problem with Moore and the #metoo celebrities exposed as sexual predators, sexual predators in general, throughout the broader public; instead the consent that was never given. Not only because the victim in question is a young child incapable of understanding what is happening, but older adolescents who maybe know just enough to know they don’t want it, grown men and women who know for sure they don’t want what their potential abuser has in mind and makes that abundantly clear… Applying additional needed perspective, his actions with Leigh Corfman amount to child molestation not singularly because of her age, but also because she gave no indication of consent to what he did, no sexually precocious ‘flirting’ often used as an excuse as to why teachers and other grown adults ‘couldn’t help themselves,’ claim they acted older than their age, a warning sign in and of itself if present there is much more going on with that child; thoroughly shocked by what was happening, telling him she was uncomfortable. Him still not getting the message of her disinterest, forget trauma, repeatedly trying to ask her out on subsequently desired ‘dates’ she never went to. That ‘forceful,’ unwanted kiss he suddenly planted on Gena Richardson constitutes sexual misconduct/assault, and provided descriptions of what he did to Beverly Young-Nelson is nothing short of attempted rape, pure and simple; behaviors every one against the law be you 6, 16 or 60, anywhere along said age line, or exceeding it. One social, societal game changer to come out of cases like Steubenville, the conviction of teens involved, backlash toward extraordinarily light sentences given for convictions related to rape/sexual assault where the perpetrators were in high school or college, think Brock Turner and the high school basketball player where the judge commented a harsh sentence would ruin his life, is a shift in how we talk about consent, in depth conversations on how we present consent to young people, productive discussions on adding it to comprehensive sexual education curriculum. Scrapping the overly simplistic no means no we grew up with to telling hormone filled youngsters they must secure an enthusiastic yes to sex before going ahead with intercourse; because, as this blog pointed out Steubenville convicted rapist Ma’Lik Richmond said he didn’t see a rape, had he seen one he would have stopped it, that Massachusetts basketball player point blank told the judge since she didn’t say no, when he started to finger her, he thought it was ok. Indicating a drastic gap in legal definitions of concepts like consent, rape and public general knowledge definitions; our kids are falling victim to poor information, poor definitions and no preparation for the scenarios they face navigating their world like the ‘everybody falling down drunk at parities, games, concerts’ Richmond told the ABC news interviewer about as well as what he thought rape was, jumping out of an ally somewhere and attacking a girl. Connecting that to Roy Moore and conversations around age of consent, the national age of consent Salon’s author insists we need, contrast the evolving approach to teaching consent, the idea of receiving an enthusiastic yes to sex before continuing with sexual advances to the enthusiastic NO he kept getting from local teens. Enthusiastic no’s he paid no heed to and neither did anyone else from store managers to local police who only put him on a ‘watch’ list, resolving to keep a better eye on him; never mind stalking and harassment are real crimes, offenses prosecutable under the law, actions for which you can be arrested/jailed and apply whether you are 8, 18 or 80 again anywhere along that age line or outliving it. Yet it doesn’t just boil down to a person’s age, questions on dubious consent to a sexual encounter, high school and college parties where nearly everyone has ingested alcohol, are varying degrees of drunk, where you’re clearly operating in a gray area, it’s the consent never sought out nor asked for. Surpassing the ruffies rewind used by Bill Cosby to get women to willingly down pills by telling them they were something benign, dropping them in women’s drinks or setting it up to make it appear an established addict had a relapse, abusing medical authority over patients in your care the way Dr. Nassar did in order to get Maroney alone in a hotel room to abuse her on a trip, taking away their ability to consent legally or otherwise by introducing multiple mind altering substances. Tina Johnson was never asked if she wanted to date Roy Moore, unaware until later he was married a huge no go zone for her, never asked if she liked/appreciated the flirty attention he was giving to her, in fact freaked out by it; if ever having tried a case in a courtroom, indications he should have been able to pick up on, sneakily grabbing her buttocks she states scarred her for life, a whole different level of brazenly not ok….Zero consent, permission sought in what happened to Terry Crews at a party where a Hollywood talent agent sort started out leering at him and sticking his tongue out at him in an overtly sexual way; confused, trying to understand if this was an icebreaker or what, Crews goes over to shake his hand. And while he puts his hand out to be shaken in the standard, especially male, professional business greeting, said agent reaches under his hand to grope him causing Crews to jump back vehemently objecting; body language/facial expression showing shock, his assaulter continuing with ‘the tongue move’ this time with added grunting noises. Coming back again to do the same thing prompting Crews to slap his hand away, shove him backwards with more force than the last time and outraged, ask what he was doing; whole scene happening in front of his wife who confirmed the account to ABC news. Crews left reeling from the absurdity of the situation, questioning still a year later as of interview footage, if it really happened; almost identical descriptions of what happened to Kevin Sorbo at the hands of now deceased Gianni Versace. Who graduated from verbal sexual harassment to running his hand up the actor’s leg; whose purported response to Sorbo’s assertion he was straight was to say “that’s why I like you, you’re not a girly man you’re a man’s man… adding an all too familiar element virtually dangling a modeling job in front of him if he would engage in a sexual encounter/relationship. Sounding all too much like the women describing assaults by now president Donald Trump his hands suddenly everywhere on a plain, at a bar he reaches up a woman’s skirt sitting in the next seat, making crude comments about a woman to a group he was out with one night walking in front of a building/on the sidewalk in front of it, woman waiting for her cab/car to be chatted up then have her beast groped. Sounding all too much exactly like what Mr. Trump said on the found Access Hollywood tape candidly depicting how he just starts kissing women, doesn’t wait for permission, simply does it and how being a star means he can get away with it, even to the point of grabbing her genitals. A county board member arrested after hallway building surveillance caught him in similar actions with a female colleague shortly after Trump’s election; sickeningly claiming said election meant he didn’t have to be worried about political correctness, which to him included the freedom to grab random women’s private parts. Louis CK was randomly masturbating in front of women while on the set of his many comedy productions without a thought they might be uncomfortable, uninterested in seeing his genitals, admitting the allegations against him were in fact true. Creating a 3 fold vice grip, vicious cycle of seemingly endless and next to unstoppable sexual misconduct, assault, emotionally scarring abuse, full on rape systematically unreported are those who use their power; paralleling what happened to Sorbo, Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey plus virtually every one of the #metoo exposed persons used their status as directors, movie makers, it actors, people with business currency to get aspiring talent jobs to gain sexual favors, elicit their silence about sexual propositions, harassment, forced sex acts. Even insidiously making it seem like part of the job; if you want the movie role, the connections I have access to, you must in return sleep with me… Moving away from celebrities and expanding out into the general public’s sexual abuse, predation problem carried out by ordinary citizens with no national recognition/status, there are those who use the social etiquette of tight, crowded spaces to perpetrate their abuse while putting themselves in places people either have to go or are commonly likely to be; hash tags like its not ok and tweet me your first assault unveiling creepy to abjectly terrifying encounters that have nothing to do with the age of consent so much as stopping pedophile predators, educating citizens on the legal parameters of consent correlating to real world, modern day scenarios. Making it clear to cat-callers what they’re doing is not complementary, polar opposite degrading, humiliating and profoundly unwanted; demonstrating the invariable fact that woman you may think looks hot and are giving her suggestive compliments accordingly may be an underage teen who’s highly developed for her age, a tween who is tall, again well developed for her age, reason 5,002 to knock it off. Social media experience recounts including the author who started the sharing movement telling her story “old man on city bus grabs my p**sy and smiles at me, I’m 12;” her far from the only one who couldn’t get on a bus or walk through a store being a kid without being used: 11 year old in a store, mother shopping the next aisle, man touches her a few times tries to take her. Women for years have told stories of not wearing makeup on the subway to avoid harassment, assault and rape on their way to work, shopping, business meetings, you name it. Exacerbating how young it starts, how young boys are when they get the idea they own a girl’s body not herself, “boy grabbed my chest in 4th grade when I yelled at him to stop, he punched me so hard in the stomach I doubled over,”14 year old grabbed from behind thought it was her fault she was wearing a dress, never told a soul; prime examples of the importance of teaching our kids what consent and respect are related to their own bodies and that of the opposite sex, speaking up when something uncomfortable, possibly criminal happens. Is how the utterly mundane basics of earning a living in a regular job can spell sexual danger for women, 19 year old first day in an office job, she said hello to male coworker, he kissed her full on the lips, a sneaky engineer who used to rub his arm into one woman’s breast reviewing projects with her; going through, getting higher education can also mean being raped: 18 assaulted in her college dorm by guy she went on 1 date with. Not having your own transportation, your own car can translate into attacks getting out of cabs, people of all ages being rubbed up against in a sexual manner on busses, trains, subways by all ages of men, boys, child sex abuse to full on rape; particularly alarming in the era of Uber and Lyft, popularity of the ride sharing apps and service among millennials uninterested in drivers licenses, getting their own vehicles or as yet unable to afford them just starting out in their careers, battling student loan debts and basic expenses. Actual Uber drivers using it for sexual assaults, usually of teens and college students, tired or drunk individuals; while fake Uber divers using similar looking cars and knock off logos proceed to kidnap, sexually assault women throughout every major city in the country. One woman writing a blog titled ‘my disposable body’ chronicling child sex abuse and later surviving rape, being in a crowd and finding someone’s hand inside your shirt, guy exposing himself to her on a kayaking trip with friends, being looked at like she was crazy by police when reporting anything short of full blown rape visited upon her via random guys who felt perfectly free to do these things with impunity. Then there are abusers who put themselves in their respective positions seemingly to find victims; teachers, coaches, youth program mentors all ones we know about. Jerry Sandusky seems to have built Second Mile exclusively for that purpose; Dennis Hastert before he came within miles of the U.S. congress was a high school wrestling coach who took boys on mentoring trips again using his title as wrestling coach and things he told students were to help their muscles exc. as a means to abuse boys. NBC news tracking down the woman whose Twitter recount assault story involved a camp counselor who reaches into her pocket and touches her vagina during a hug. Holders of career professions paralleling the gymnastics doctor, sometimes molesting girls with their parents’ right there in the room, spouting medical sounding jargon neither party could understand. From the tweet me your first assaults initiative: “Optician fitting me for my first contact lenses “drops” one down my blouse, grabs, strokes my breast as he “saves” it. I’m 14.” “My 3rd assault was by dermatologist made me undress in his office closet. Age14.” Currently there is a backlash against so called helicopter parenting supposedly bubble wrapping our children making them totally unprepared for adulthood which they appear to be reaching later and later according to college presidents and experts; well here is why we helicopter parent, no longer let our kids go into an exam room alone, push back against them having frank, open, solo conversations even with a trusted pediatrician about typical teen sexuality and sexual health. Because, we can’t so much as drop off our kids to be fitted for contacts, be a single dad and wait in the waiting room of a dermatologists office for our daughter to come out after an acne checkup appointment without finding stories like these; so, we will be in the room. Realizing in the room or not there is no guarantee of safety for kids so we will at least be present and available ask questions, report doctors that make us our kids uncomfortable. Prior to #metoo and #It’s not ok revelations came multi-media journalistic investigations revealing doctors abusing their patients fondling, forcing patients to fondle them as they were coming out of in office procedure anesthetic; complaints against doctors treated reminiscent to accusations in the priesthood about sexual abuse of children primarily, young boys, when not largely dismissed, explained away as a confused patient coming out of sedation, innocent removal of a contact or other dropped medical equipment, device, the dermatologist undressing contorted to legitimate viewing and touching of effected areas to devise treatment, doctors were shuttled to other practices out of town, state based on the premise it’s so expensive to train a doctor. Not sure what the excuse was for the pattern of doing like musical chairs with teachers known as passing the trash easily removing problem, sexual assaulting teachers only as far as a different school district, a different state via confidentiality agreements and glowing recommendations; this blog inclined to concur with the interviewed prosecutor calling it the easy way out, calling it the quickest, most efficient solution to get rid of a dangerous teacher… At the same time encompassing conversations illuminate it isn’t just ideas on a sane, universal age of consent, 18 being the obvious choice lining up with when you can vote, when you can legally sign documents, think apartment lease, open a bank account, it’s the glaring age difference between these predators and their victims when the younger is under 21, let alone 18, sending up giant red flags….this is about pedophilia and true sexual perversion of primarily men seeking young girls, men seeking young boys. Repeating scenario with the teacher pleading guilty to active pursuing a relationship with a teen in his school, having been employed at a different school where he made proposition promises of sex when she was at the age of consent to a prior student seeking algebra tutoring (another 16 state) while she was currently merely 11, the police officer arrested in a sting operation for soliciting who he thought was a 14 year old girl unveiled to be an undercover sting to catch persons precisely like himself. Anthony Weiner sits in a jail cell not for being a congressman and posting suggestive pictures of himself online, offering himself to women who were staffers but free to say no, he sits in a jail cell because he knew the girl he was sending lewd texts to was in high school while Mr. Weiner easily well into his 40’s and knowingly violating the law to boot; once out of prison he will probably never get past, at best supervised visitation with his now young son because he knew this girl was in high school, knew he was violating the law and still proceeded to stage a pic of him in his underwear laying next to the minor child then send it to her or post it online. Patrick Meehan’s staffer according to friends and associates was decades younger than he was and here he’s upset because she dares date someone age appropriate rather than respond to his love sick affections. Discussing exclusively the underage, jaw-droppingly low ages of legal marriage aspect, it isn’t limited to how young, usually the female side of the ‘partnership’ is when coming before a judge, but completing a pattern, the age disparity between the 2 persons being married; teens and tweens as young as 12 being married off to middle aged men by parents and/or judges signing off. 100% make the age for marriage 18, her preferred 21 if we are going to say you must be 21 to drink, vote or use legalized recreational marijuana; consent being nuancedly different than marriage as Marcotte illustrates. Close in age teens can consent to sex, sexual experimentation with each other, age appropriate relationships are natural and healthy even if the couple has yet to reach 18 and no one should be jailing, more importantly slapping a pedophile, child molester, sex offender label on a teen for continuing to date his high school girlfriend, sexting dirty words or pictures to his girlfriend, forwarding a willingly given picture to friends of his latest hookup, as much as we adults don’t like it. Marriage is markedly different usually binding the younger, more vulnerable half of the union, almost always the girl, to her partner financially, cutting off her means to higher education, career opportunities above medial employment, setting herself up to be trapped if the relationship is violent, turns violent at any time over the course of the marriage. What the Nepal and related investigations into American forced marriage, child marriage highlights is that only of age adults can file for divorce, even in the case of domestic violence, battered spouses; advocacy and rescue groups’ hands tied when they receive pleas from minors wanting out of said marriages apparently because the marriage makes this teen’s ‘husband’ her legal guardian and police are relegated to treating her as a runaway thus returning her to her toxic situation. Wait we’re confused, false imprisonment laws don’t apply because the person you don’t let go anywhere, constantly stalk while they leave the house is your wife; you claim this person as your spouse, petitioned a judge and/or her parents, if not both, to marry her at such a young age, then you beat and abuse her? Domestic violence, battered spouse laws don’t apply because the marriage was to a minor in a state, city, county that legally allows it with parent and/or judge permission, you can’t thus prosecute these abusers with physical evidence of beatings, abuse under simpler assault? Because they are a minor, or since guardianship seems to be why these ‘runaways’ are returned to their abusive ‘husbands,’ in a child marriage situation, why not slap them with child abuse charges? Effective legal maneuvering ways to combat such scenarios either while educating congressional members, facets of the legal community including ruling judges or without directly attacking the no minimum ‘age a girl can marry’ legal gap in some states, the low minimum ages in others; likewise avoiding sticky religious freedom and states rights’ arguments bound to come up local citizens will really behind if the federal government tries to step in. Step 2 then is to emancipate these ‘married’ minors, since a judge signed off on thinking they were adult enough to get married in the first place, making them legally adults and able to file for divorce; also, allowing advocacy and rescue agencies to intervene uninhibited and remove them from their abuser, a marriage they never truly wanted, setting the youngest sometimes (gag) 12 up in assisted living group/home type facilities meeting their financial needs until old enough to work. Legal adult status permitting them access to their official and identity documents birth certificate, social security card, obtain copies of same, file for lost/replacement card; documents allowing them to enroll, reenroll, maintain enrollment in K-12 public school, apply to colleges and access Pell grants, scholarships and other financial aid sources when the time comes, get a job. All a clarion call for shoring up domestic violence laws, spousal abuse statutes, strengthening parameters of basic assault charges; perhaps another angle to tackle the child marriage conundrum isn’t to mandate an age, isn’t to wade into the quagmire of religion, the fundamental basis for underage marriage of teens, tweens to much older men, choosing preemptive attack from the perspective of child abuse before her husband is beating her, as it pertains to contributing to the delinquency of a minor, possible sex abuse on the part of parents who want her married so young. It should be a sweeping red flag to a judge when he sees a teen wanting to marry anyone especially over the age of 20, never mind 30, 40 and above, it should be a bigger red flag when the parents too are eager for their daughter to be married to a middle aged person… Returning to child marriage solutions under child abuse statutes, laying out cases minus consent proving how marrying her off to a man at that young an age is harmful to her development, robs her of fundamental, legally mandated education, opens her up to marital violence, in the youngest cases the physically harmful effects of having sex, penitential pregnancy, her flagging ability to emotionally, developmentally care for a child; bullet points every one used to compel states to take custody of children born to teen mothers, petition the state teen mother’s rights be terminated, a child the product of a teen mother be placed for adoption, permit adoption proceedings of a long-term care foster family, so why not here? Side note there are often what used to be thought of as dowries exchanged, monies, goods exchanged for marriage agreements like the 2009 man who literally sold his 14 year old daughter to an 18 year old bridegroom for thousands in case 100 cases of beer, and 100 cases of meat calling police when the bridegroom failed to deliver on payment. Police promptly arresting the man on the grounds you can’t sell people period, per the state of California law he could not sell a minor into the situation the arranged marriage would put her in and their consent laws said she also could not be legally married. Link below that older story is a 2016 case chronicling a mother’s sentencing for among a litany of other charges encompassing forcing her 11 year old daughter to do drugs selling her for access to sex and heroine. Why can’t we apprehend, legally punish so called parents getting up to this negligent, dangerous crap on periphery charges if it is indeed that hard to convince judges, push politicians to change legislation, bring up wanted changes for a vote; none of it should be happening to children, let’s stop it all, not one aspect. Yes a long and arduous process yet far better than the defeatist tone taken by the child marriage awareness advocate essentially throwing up her hands saying there’s nothing we can do short of, while in the process of changing marriage laws across all 50 states, establishing minimum ages, raising existing minimum ages—not true or it shouldn’t be….So if a nationwide age of consent won’t work for anything except perhaps handling the creepy child marriage problem, what would have stopped Roy Moore and mirroring individuals; moving beyond Barbara Bowman being laughed out of a lawyer’s office, listening, acting on reports of harassment, misconduct, unwanted advances/pursuits, never mind assault or rape. Roy Moore should have been stopped when repeated complaints about unwanted pursuit, constant seeking of phone numbers prompted police to school him on harassment; while he likely would have had a plausible excuse for accumulating phone numbers, today his calling a high school and being able to bring a potential ‘date’ to the phone would not happen, they should have said to him he couldn’t continue to come to the mall to leer at teen girls, start random conversations that have nothing to do with products being sold, things he wants to buy making them exceedingly uncomfortable, he couldn’t continue causing girls to flee into bathrooms, hiding from him. If he was going to continue patronizing, using the YMCA, he was going to have to confine himself to the adult sections and refrain from speaking to teenagers, in eating establishments his leering at teen wait staff and pulling teen girls’ long hair was no longer going to be tolerated; if he was going to remain in attendance at local ballgames he was going to be required to steer clear of cheerleaders or be faced with trespassing charges, dido the dance recital where he first saw he wife. Along with helping the teens achieve restraining orders and protection orders against Mr. Moore barring him from coming within X feet of them so that they could work after school/weekend jobs in peace, absent fear of what he might do or what he wanted from them. When he kept doing it, he should have been charged and jailed, put on trial, before a bench to answer for his actions, facing potential disbarment from the American bar association for his conduct; not exactly an open and shut case, but close enough…Read More

INDIE MUSIC NEWS

Texas Gunman And Beyond: President Trump Is Right It’s About Mental Health

But if you want to talk about laws effecting mental health and the ability to buy guns, then we also have to talk about poor, non-existent coordination between law enforcement entities/agencies, lagging tech, too many databases and the information never put in them in the first place. Read More

INDIE MUSIC NEWS

Dear Alabama About Roy Moore: Of Course It Took Women 40 Years To Come Forward

He was banned from the local mall, a community WMCA, twice ousted from his judgeship for an inability to follow the constitution; what was he doing running for the United States senate even before we knew he was a bible thumping, god squad pedophiliac?…We’ve never treated women well in this country, hell anywhere across the globe, spanning the planet; why should now be any different? So is it any significant surprise these women didn’t come forward before now in a society determined not to believe them, shame anyone who dares speak up and say X happened to me, I too experience Y, exactly what happened to them. Revealing things deeply personal and traumatic in a public venue for the betterment of your fellow citizens only to be called liar not singularly by your abuser, harasser, attempted rapist but your community, the country as well, to have your history of failed marriages, financial troubles, sexual partners, weekly presence at a bar for girls night (being single and unattached) bought up as reasons you shouldn’t be believed, taken seriously, asked well what did you do, did you flirt, when regardless of flirting no still means no, period. But women who come forward are up to something nefarious, a fake news conspiracy, sure…Remembering most of his accusers were children/teens at the time, children who even at this late stage, budding on adulthood, have an uncanny ability to make things their fault whether they feasibly are or not; sexual abuse, assault victims doubly, triply prone to thinking it’s their fault if they were too shocked to say no, are unsure if they clearly said no. Teens chronologically 18, legally an adult but psychologically still very much a kid; more importantly kids, just turned adults not looking to date, get into a relationship, be kissed, fondled, have sex, certainly not interested in the attention of an older man: case in point 22 year old Becky Gray. It’s Bill Cosby all over again someone of fame, notoriety, power using those things to prey on women and girls; only this time adding in the worst elements of small town, Barney Fife America. A place where justice is doled out by a city, county sheriff, series of them and based on whether you’re liked or not in the community, seen as good people or not, their collective interpretations of your community standing. Far less on fact, tangible evidence, inconvenient corroborating witness statements, conflicting statements designed to discredit, shame the victim in the eyes of the community. A place doing its best to imitate, too often forgotten fictitious, Mayberry anchored in so called ‘good Christian values;’ who would doubtlessly agree with the backwards school dress code policies, various nationwide clothing bans on thong underwear and deemed ‘see through’ clothing worn in public regardless of the visual reality you can’t see anything untoward/indecent. People conditioned to think baggy pants are immoral and ‘slutty,’ ‘easy,’ ‘loose’ women running around like ‘that’ deserve what they get. Roy Moore used his standing as an attorney on his youngest victim Leigh Corfman and her mother offering to sit with her while Corfman’s mother went into custody proceedings stating she didn’t want her daughter to hear ‘all that; spending the time chatting her up, getting her phone number to days later take her to his wooded cabin where he undressed her and himself touching her through her underwear and manipulating her hand to touch him. He used his age and the popular gathering hub that was Gadsden’s new mall, combined with the strangely low age of consent (16) to troll for teen girls he wanted to date, flattering them with the attention he gave them, soliciting and receiving their phone numbers; teens like Gloria Thacker Deason, Kelly Harrison Thorp. No doubt playing on their desire for romance coupled with making them feel grown up, mature; only troubled later as they grew older and understood how abnormal was he did really was. Undaunted by continued rebuffs, he used his profession to call the local high school and have one teen he was interested in taken from trig class (trigonometry, that’s math), brought to the phone in order to ask her out. Gena Richardson recalling to this day nervously thinking it might be her dad, utterly shocked at who was actually on the other end of the phone, feeling like all eyes were on her, saying yes to a date because she didn’t know what else to do; fitting a pattern of others who agreed to stop his harassment, only to be forcibly kissed and have to tell him her curfew was right now prevent anything else from happening. He used both his job as district attorney and guest speakership in a high school history classroom talking about the law, the justice system to pick up a 17 year old Debbie Wesson Gibson; and, when we say pick up we mean ask out on a date. He bluntly told his 5th victim, coming forward to cameras in a press conference, she was just a child and he was the district attorney of the county before dumping her out of his car into the cold; unsuccessfully able to physically subdue her into giving him oral sex initiated post offering her a ride home from the diner where she worked because her boyfriend hadn’t shown, as he usually did. Troubling isn’t just the allegations leveled against Roy Moore, it’s his response to them; confronted with what women said he did to them as minors, while working at his law office again he then used local culture to deny, deflect, lastly defend his actions…Mirroring Cosby, classic predator behavior Moore knew exactly what he was doing when he met Leigh Corfman around the corner from her house on a dark, cold night letting her think they were going to the movie, waiting until the second time he ran said routine to ‘seduce’ her, her word describing the abuse in a later Today Show interview. He knew what he was doing repeatedly making himself a presence at the diner waiting for an opening to get a girl, the girl he’s had his eye on alone; an opening materialized that cold night exiting said diner able to freely offer Beverly Young-Nelson a ride when her boyfriend was late picking her up. He calculatingly knew precisely what he was doing parking his car in back between the dumpster and the building where passing people, cars couldn’t see, locking the car doors so she couldn’t get out; panicking when he began trying to remove her shirt, fondle her breasts then push her head toward his crotch. Yes the age of consent in Alabama then and today is 16, unsettling as we may find it, it’s the law; however, forcing/manipulating someone into having sex, attempting to do is called rape/attempted rape and is still against the law. Beverly Young-Nelson did not consent, wanted no part of a sexual encounter with Moore, let alone participating in oral sex; and made that clear in her physical efforts to fight him off, still making it a crime independent Alabama’s views on who is old enough to consent. Smoothly coercing Gena Richardson into his car prior to giving her the, unexpected, paramount unwanted, ‘forceful kiss’ that left her scared (making his actions sexual assault) wasn’t a happy accident for him, but the disgusting ease of a practiced predator who had done this so many times it was routine….Again he knew exactly what he was doing, choosing to flirt with, ask out on a date while married himself, then grope, a recently divorced, implied emotionally fragile, woman necessitated into signing over custody of her son to her mother; waiting for her mother to leave the room, actively maneuvering things so she left first leaving him just enough alone time with his unsuspecting, understandably distracted, possibly distraught, victim…Nor did these women stay absolutely silent for 40 years, not that it wouldn’t be standard psychology if they did, because it would fit to a T profiles of sexual violence, molestation sufferers; many sexual abuse victims/survivors, sexual assault, rape victims/survivors take years to come forward, come to terms with it enough to speak openly about what they endured. However every teen case told friends or relatives sometime between when it happened and present day, most mere days later; ready to speak they tell people they trust, persons in their life that make them feel safe, why they told who they did…. friends recall bruises all over Beverly Young-Nelson’s neck following her attack, 2 years later informing her younger sister. Like many child victims she feared telling those around her not wanting Moore to harm her, potentially her family citing his violent temper; Richardson, similar to siblings who endure sexual abuse believing they are protecting the other(s), thought she was the only one he had done this to, becoming physically ill years later as a mother and grandmother realizing she was just a notch on his pedophile, child abusing belt… Hearing his victims tell their stories, the 2 agreeing to television interviews, you expediently conclude these were girls who had no idea what was going on, what was going to happen until it was happening and too late. Listening to Leigh Corfman’s Today interview cements in your mind her Washington Post statements: I wanted it over with — I wanted out,” she remembers thinking. “Please just get this over with. Whatever this is, just get it over”…‘She remembers thinking, “I don’t want to do this” and “I need to get out of here.” She says that she got dressed and asked Moore to take her home, and that he did.’ She sounds like exactly what she is a child/teen victim of pedophile grooming and culminating abuse; combining victims’ innate sense such abuse, violence is there fault is how it intertwines catastrophically with small town values, small town rearing it’s ugliest head again via ingrained sentiments echoed in Corfman’s extended interviews. Telling both the Post and Today’s Savannah Guthrie she previously thought of confronting Moore on multiple occasions almost did during the early 2000’s when he was up for Alabama chief justice, but decided against it based on her small children still in school, her less than perfect/idyllic life, 3 divorces and spotty financial record. Elaborated on during that same interview she was a single parent, sitting her kids down, in elementary and Jr. High at the time, terrified they would be ostracized from their respective social groups; thus deciding against it. Sounds an awful lot like another accuser of another prominent political candidate, it echoes Natasha Stoynoff’s encounter with businessman turned presidential candidate Donald Trump advised by friends and ultimately choosing not to let him win, ruin her career, by filing charges initiating a public legal confrontation. Sad realities that don’t make these 2 women’s experiences, important distinction, not fabricated stories, any less true; Beverly Young-Nelson said in her press conference she probably would have taken what Roy Moore did to her to her grave if not for the courage of other women affected to speak first. CNN revealing in a profile on Moore’s wife Kayla maiden name Kiser was in the same graduating class as, wait for it, Beverly Young now Young-Nelson; gee I wonder the other half of what closed her mouth for a good 30 of those 40 years? Who else among his known victims, ones who have yet to come forward, never will stayed silent after adulthood, stay silent did so/do so currently because they have relatives who are friends with the Moore’s, the Moore siblings from years ago? And don’t want to be the subject of town gossip, suddenly known singularly as the person who accused Roy Moore of the unthinkable, losing what little support system they have in terms of friends, emergency babysitters for their kids, people to watch their house while they go out of town for work, to handle a family emergency? Victims who want to remain living in Gadsden, where they grew up, despite everything find it a good place to raise their kids; more simplistically, want to go to the grocery store, gas station, continue working, attending church, community functions without being gawked at, bombarded with questions, anger, hate, run out of town by vandalism, violence, harassment because they told the truth about what he did to them, a truth no locals weren’t ready to accept? What will be the social fallout, repercussions for people coming forward who right now live in Gadsden, have family in Gadsden; will they find themselves forced to move, to keep a job, extract their children from torment at school, their grandchildren, get a loan, all things effected in a small town when you’re part of a scandal like Roy Moore’s, whether you did anything wrong or not. Will it be a case of desiring to move to regain the peace and quiet they once had in this previously sleepy Alabama town, escape character assassinations from people they once called friend asking how they could do such a thing to him, a good Christian man, to them his supporter, their parents, siblings cousins; saying they’re only doing it for money, attention, because they are mentally unwell, not because it’s 100% true. No, no these women did it for nothing other than spitefully ending his political career; not because his political career, which is supposed to be an act of public service, should end, not the least of which for the plausibility of the accusations against him piled atop abysmal policies he fully intends to bring to the United States senate…Neither is Roy Moore the first holder of public office, hopeful public office holder wanna-be marred in some sort of sexual impropriety scandal, believable ones derailing campaigns, spelling resignations; years before Bill Clinton, years closer to the time frame Roy Moore was doing inappropriate things to young girls there was Gary Hart. Where the mere allegation had him suspending his campaign before the picture emerged of a woman, not his wife, perched on his lap in what looks like an intimate weekend getaway not a publicity photo where some random person jumped on his lap exclusively for the picture. Arguably most famous instance, known in every corner across the country, former president Bill Clinton; difference is Bill Clinton has been litigated to the nth degree, many of Clinton’s accusers were not credible, provable to the standard merited in a court of law…There really is no truly questionable narrative surrounding daughter Chelsea’s parentage; like the Clinton murder rap sheet housing victims of plane crashes, heart attacks, self-inflicted suicides and a handful of persons still very much alive when conspiracy theory publications said they were dead. Difference is we didn’t know what we know now when we first elected him to office in 1992; Pula Jones’ lawsuit didn’t come until 1994, concluded by summary judgement against Jones in ’98, Kathleen Willey stated her groping and forced fondling of his genitals didn’t take place until 1993 reported also in’98, 2 years after his reelection to a second term. Willey who went on to write a book published in 2007 alleging the Clinton’s hired someone to kill her cat, then her husband, graduating to full tin foil hat conspiracy level non-sense. Analysts too have a point saying that comparing Bill Clinton and Bill Cosby, Bill Clinton and Donald Trump, currently Bill Clinton and Roy Moore is false equivalency; fundamentally because, directly contrasting Trump surrogate Rudy Giuliani’s rehashing and re-characterization, Monica Lewinsky never accused him of rape rather admitting a consensual relationship. The thing they could legally prove approaching beyond a reasonable doubt was Bill Clinton lying under oath about a consensual blow job given by a well of age woman. Difference is most, most media nicknamed ‘sex scandals’ involving political figures, waiting in the wings political wannabe’s didn’t/don’t involve pedophilia, the systematic sexual abuse, exploitation of children and underage persons…We’re being told now about what Roy Moore has credibly said to have done to 9 people, 9 people he’s impacted horribly; not because he prosecuted them for reasonably thought guilty wrongdoing as a prosecutor, even was overzealous in the pursuit of a suspected criminal he thought was ‘his man’ and got it wholly wrong locking an innocent person away. Not because he harshly sentenced someone who came before him as a judge, even under his extreme religious beliefs deviating from the constitution; but, because of his proclivity for ‘dating’ teen girls. Trolling the local mall, YMCA, ballgames complete with cheerleaders, high school dances, lurking outside public bathrooms to the point female workers were avoiding him, outright hiding from him, complaining to managers, drawing straws to see who would have to go down to the courthouse to turn in store receipts (described as a dreaded experience for older teen managers), earning him 2 bans from the first places listed and putting local police on watch alert for games. Hounding and badgering them until they gave up their phone numbers or said yes to going out with him only to forcibly kiss them in a way that frightened them. Playing on his ‘wholesome’ nature to gain a parent’s trust while they handle a custody matter spending the intervening time priming her for the abuse he was already planning to inflict; on eagle-eyed alert for opportunities to, let’s call it what it is, assault, abuse engage in active predation. Like seeing the teen at the diner walk out end of shift and her boyfriend be late giving her a ride, garnering trust because he’s the district attorney; only to be groped, have your shirt nearly ripped off and extensive bruises on your neck, because you dared fight having your head shoved into his crotch. Eventuality: giving him oral sex, except he gave up and dumped you on the cold pavement and rode off into the night. Why would we, citizens of Alabama or elsewhere across the country, want to send him to congress to continue chasing interns, groping female staff and quite possibly answer more allegations as they come forward; instead of focusing on national policies that can help Alabama, taking the people of Alabama’s issues to Washington to be heard?…Truth is Roy Moore had problems beyond running as the family values candidate from the beginning of his senate bid, even if his defiance over the 10 commandments display in his courtroom or his vow to put an identical monument in the courthouse lobby was defensible to his electorate; as was his stance on gay marriage, refusal to inforce it, orders to his district clerks and judges not to, could have pushed him over the edge in terms of winning…There were and are countless red flags Moore was not who he purported himself to be or a good prospect for the job he was essentially applying to, announcing, going ahead with his candidacy. From the outset he flunked knowledge of fundamental issues that would have disqualified him running in a state house or senate race on the basis of incompetence; Salon.com noting he came into his bid not knowing what DACA was, dido right to work laws. So how would he help his state navigate critical issues handling their immigrant populations, craft decisions either shoring up unions or continuing right to work policies because they are working for your state, never mind showing up to the United States senate having anything to contribute to policy conversations effecting the whole country, areas drastically more impacted by those 2 issues alone. Prompting the question what additional issues specific to Alabama, adjacent state, regional designation known as the south doesn’t he know about? Further he suddenly believes the NFL national anthem protests are against the law direct contradiction to the constitution, having nothing to do with his stated biblical views; a giant indicator he has no intention of following the constitution in any circumstance rather the bible combined with his gut intuition, making him dangerous as a government public servant designated law maker…Next were his recorded comments on race, how he referred to other nationalities, the fact it reverberates like it’s from 100 years in the past referring to American Indians reds and Asians as yellows; granted he did so shrouded in the context of division, how bad it is for our country, but that remains no excuse. Alabama like the rest of the collective south spending years trying to erase its racist persona, or was that just during the Obama years? Moore has dug himself deeper in the racism hole taking huge sums of money, half a million dollars over the last decade plus, from an extremist pro-secessionist group and founder who calls for the ‘more Christian south’ to secede plus wanting to start his own Anglo-Celtic elite state; perhaps having graduated from law school and aspiring to a U.S. senate seat he might want to show them the supreme court case Texas V. White making secession illegal instead of pocketing money from them. Roy Moore, close to his flagrant race bating, bigotry doesn’t stop talking about religious freedom apparently only believing it’s for the ‘constantly oppressed Christian’ referencing both his comments about Islam and his reaction to Keith Ellison, who generated right wing scandal of the highest order when he took his oath of office hand on a Koran; taking it a step further saying Ellison shouldn’t be permitted to serve because he’s a Muslim and in Moore’s experience ‘the only thing he understands about Muslims is spelled 9/11. Despite the reality there is no requirement you be sworn into public office on a bible, or religious book for that matter, you could be sworn in on a copy of Sports Illustrated if you so desired; knowledge that should fall under things we learned watching iconic political classic The West Wing. But before we get to that there seems to be a need to review other fundamental basics about American government, the founding of this country and pivotal mandates to hold office; first and foremost that there is no religious test involved whether holding the highest office or the lowest, junctures in between…. Attractively popular as his positions on sexuality and social issues may be, worth weighing carefully for the citizens casting ballots in Alabama is results garnered in North Carolina’s bathroom bill; something Moore would surely throw his weight behind from Washington, push for on a national level rehashing DOMA (the defense of marriage act), a constitutional amendment defining marriage. Calculating vast quantities of revenue that fled the state, businesses that refused to go ahead with developments there, singers, entertainers who boycotted the state, canceled upcoming concerts exc. there, relocation of all basketball; an immeasurable block of income for the state clearly not worth risking. Mirroring effects in any state also considering bathroom bill legislation Mississippi and Georgia to name 2; Georgia particularly poised to be hit hard called the Hollywood of the south, if they had gone through with their religious liberty bill holding bathroom provisions forcing persons to use the restrooms, locker rooms, fitting rooms corresponding to the gender on their birth certificate. Alabama already scorned nationally for the LGBT phobic reaction to a gay character in the Beauty and the Beast remake; at least one drive-in there refusing to show the movie on those grounds. Expanding upon reporters remarking about just how out of step he is with most Alabama citizens/voters, true they may not be big fans of homosexuality but don’t think the entirety of America is evil because of it or agree that legalizing gay marriage, permitting homosexual persons to marry like anyone else, be a complete part of society is worse than slavery the way he does; exercising a modicum of common sense it’s hard to see the Yellowhammer state going along with his stated perception homosexuals, homosexuality should be outlawed, clogging court systems with persons trying to disprove their gayness so they can rent an apartment, get a job, see their long time doctor, let alone stay out of jail, prevent being rounded up because they are, thought a ‘fag.’ Roy Moore’s allegations reeking of rank hypocrisy and casting in new light judicial decisions he’s made while on the bench; once decreeing during a lesbian woman’s child custody case she couldn’t see her child unsupervised or with her partner based on the harm homosexuality does to children. Never pondering also the psychological impact of barring a child from their mother, already processing the stress of a divorce, because of their romantic relationship, no evidence she’d done anything irresponsible in her parenting, was abusive, neglectful, exposed them to someone inappropriate, allowed the child to see them having sex, taken the child to rendezvous to have sex; just that she was getting a divorce, identified as a lesbian and judge Moore didn’t like that. Decided another jaw dropping case where he ruled in favor of a daycare worker who raped a 12 year old because he said there was no ‘implied threat of physical injury;’ not that anyone has ever heard his definition, reasoning being the standard to prove or disprove rape. The standard is did person X, the defendant brought up on charges, standing in the courtroom force the identified victim to have sex with them, attempt to force them to have sex with them, perform sex acts on them involving their mouth, objects, fingers making contact with genitals exc. Here standard being statutory since the child’s 12, and even if she ‘seemed to be/behaved in a willing manner,’ has no legal capacity to consent; meaning having sex with a 12 year old is against the law, and if you prove that indeed did happen to the level accepted in a court of law, you’re guilty to be sentenced accordingly period. Further any pediatrician, let alone someone with half a brain, would disagree rape most certainly can and will cause harm to a child’s physical body just by the size difference of anatomy; size playing a role too in whether there is an implied physical threat when the person abusing you, in this case raping you, is 2, 3 or more times bigger than you in terms of actual stature, build debunking the argument behind his legal finding. In a subsequent daycare case were a presumably male worker raped a 4 year old Moore said “sodomy is an abhorrent crime and should be strictly punished” but argued the evidence did not support a lower court’s finding that Higdon had assaulted a child using “forcible compulsion.” What do you mean forcible compulsion, remember the child is 4 and again is physically incapable of fighting back by the sheer stature of their abuser; considering his toddler age coercion is probably all he had to use until the boy was too trapped to get away, but under no circumstance is sex with a child potentially still in diapers acceptable, even thought about by someone who is not seriously mentally perverted. To say nothing of the psychological impact rape, whatever the specific/horrific details, has on a fully grown adult forget a child, unfathomable for one pre-school age still learning to form words, speak in complete, more complex sentences; and you’re ok voting for this guy Alabama? Senate candidate Roy Moore who challenged his state’s rape shield law meant to protect victims of sexual violence, positing in his dissenting opinion offenders should be allowed to use parts of a victim’s past as evidence in their defense; as if bringing your rapist to justice wasn’t difficult enough emotionally, psychologically, system often seen as victimizing the victim multiple times over by the time a verdict is rendered. Nor was his opinion a rare one attached to individual cases where the victim had a history of false accusations, psychosis related mental health problems or other extenuating, mitigating circumstances where not lifting it in the prescribed instance would hinder the defendants’ opportunity for an adequate defense; The Guardian uncovered during his last 3 year stretch as Alabama’s chief justice of their state supreme court he cited similar thinking on 13 of 16 cases having to do with sex crimes, downright creepy all around when mulling over the accusations leveled against him. Frightening foreshadowing it play there was his opinion on a case scarily parallel to his own interactions with young women, saying of a school police officer accused of having sex with a 17 year old student: “although I do not condone the behavior” of Bonds, the courts should consider the notion that Bonds was not technically an employee of the school, and therefore may have been wrongly prosecuted.” Rather than recognizing even though the age of consent remains 16, the unequal power dynamic and given authority makes it inappropriate enough to prosecute in a court of law. But what we must look out for is the gays, lesbians, sodomites, Alabamians need to seriously ask themselves the same question Charles Krauthammer asked last year in the midst of the bathroom bill dust ups, do we have an epidemic of transgenders being evil in bathrooms; relating it to Moore and the vote taking place in a little less than 2 weeks, do we have an epidemic of LGBT rapists anywhere, LGBT predators preying on children, sodomy negatively impacting anyone besides the people willingly engaging in it, key word being willingly? Or, is it what has been pointed out for years A-we have more arguably sexually repressed, supposedly straight republicans doing creepy things in bathrooms? B- the biggest problem we have on the LGBT front is harm to members of this community visited upon them from the so called ‘normal’ rest of the town, city, state, region, nation, globe; ‘normal people convinced by their religious dogma LGBT is an abomination, unnatural, even contagious ‘normal’ people who replaced lube containers with acid in an Australian gay club, a Georgia man who poured scalding hot water on his girlfriend’s son and his boyfriend leaving them with 3rd degree burns, horrendous pain, endless surgeries and lifelong scars, their only sin that night, sleeping in bed after a hard day’s work. The tragic fates of Mathew Sheppard and Brandon Tina the most horrifying bookends to numerous accounts sexual bullying, sexual humiliations, occurrences of rape, sodomy, sexual assault, brought down on LGBT persons by characterized ‘good Christian’ boys and girls, teens and adults thinking because they’re gay they’ll like it, because they are gay they deserve the pain and torment forced sex brings, believing they can turn them straight make them realize they are indeed the gender they were born anatomically by having sex with them. C- clever predators using sickening methods to rid their prey of their gayness to hide their own sexually deviant tendencies and have unfettered access to a wealth of victims; like the teacher, at a Christian school, who spent weekly appointments raping one young man him, in every way possible, because he was gay, wanted him to hate men, so he would change. Which is realistically the greater threat to society/people’s feeling of personal safety, LGBT persons who like the same gendered person, both genders, not about sex at all feel they were born in the wrong body, all wanting to just be who they are, go about their business, same sex couples who want to marry like their heterosexual counterparts, to borrow a phrase from his vocabulary ‘live right;’ or, sexual harassment that effects both genders and can happen regardless your sexual orientation, gender identity? Usually perpetrated by straight, predominantly white men who feel entitled to comment, evaluate and indiscriminately touch women’s bodies whenever they feel like it, sexually or not; Tennessee so focused on their bathroom bill, regulating LGBT people they ignored their own sexual harassing straight, male predator in their midst until he had potentially assaulted, in some way, 34 women. How about the country board member caught p*sy grabbing shortly after the election of Donald Trump who thought the election of the president meant he didn’t have to be bothered by fussy political correctness; ignoring since when was it under the term political correctness to keep your hands to yourself, expressly off a woman’s behind, genitals or breasts, your tongue out of her mouth, anywhere else you can think of unasked for/uninvited, that’s common decency, a crash course and how not to get arrested for assault, novel thought…. Contrast what usually happens to pedophiles in Alabama to what hasn’t happen with Roy Moore for 40 years; a man, regular average Joe citizen, was convicted of “Using a Computer to Attempt to Persuade, Induce and Entice a Child to Engage in Sexual Activity” and spent 5 years in jail independent never having met the 14 year old because she did not exist and it was a sting operation by law enforcement to catch predators such as himself, upon release placed on the sex offender registry listing his home address make model and license plate of his car, identifying scars. Comparing like powerful people look at what’s taken place with Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacy, Mark Halperin, Charlie Rose, Roger Ailes, Bill O’Riley and Eric Bolling before them, all fired from their professions, persona non grata in the professional circles they used to inhabit, awards, honorary doctorates, professional society memberships retracted, rescinded and revoked; Mr. Moore on track to go to the United States senate instead, what’s wrong with this picture? In the sobering words of victim Tina Johnson “quit being willingly ignorant…Read More

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Microchips Are For Fido Not For You; It’s Not Hip, Cool, Cutting Edge Science And Is In Fact Dangerous—Fundamentalist Religious Connotations Aside

Maybe an interesting way to keep track of socks, locate lost possessions, car keys, tools, go into so called wearable technology but not in you, and certainly not for want of never losing your keys, finding a place to put your wallet/credit card, room key at the beach, medical records available at a swipe, thrill you get at doors opening by the wave of your hand… It isn’t a real life substitute for the force and it’s not supposed to be; as great as technology and the world is today this isn’t Star Wars. Oh how quickly we forget that universe too had its problems; great to read about, see movies about, absolutely horrible to LIVE in, remembering exactly where Darth Vader’s force sensitivity led him, hmm….While the Ohio surveillance company ‘implantation’ was completely voluntary and clearly testing the waters 11 years ago and the BuzzFeed author was delving into the future of money, how he chose to go about it represents choice, exploration, curiosity; Sweden’s moves are a little more insidious and compelling. First, as the BuzzFeed author noted, they have migrated farther away from cards or the nearly obsolete cash payment forms opting for mobile payment systems and chip readers not to mention professionals to implant them; next workers at the company featured by BBC all apparently agreed to chip implantation as a condition of their employment, we don’t need a crystal ball to see where this is going do we? How long before, in Sweden at least, it isn’t voluntary if you want a job, need medical care, wish to buy standard, basic personal hygiene items, food, rent an apartment; the UK and other small European countries the next to likely follow suit. Sold to the public as ultimate security, identity protection, removes the need for carrying cards or documents, eliminates what can happen in fire, natural disaster— loss of important personal data. Here is what older, slightly religious to absolutely fundamentalist religious persons, those simply reasonably cautious talk about when they shout mark of the beast, start correlating RFID technology to eternal damnation laid out in the bible for all who take the mark in their hand or forehead, without which they will be forbidden to buy or sell goods. Current technology, its pushed for direction begging the question, if the bible is the hoax, merely moral guideline book filled with endless inaccuracies, implausibilities, then why does RFID, its potential future offshoot technologies include a creepy picture of a man wearing an adhesive circuit board on his forehead? Thankfully the U.S. and most of the world has a long way to go before RFID could be remotely commonplace….People familiar with my work know my continued chronicling of this technology and repeated cautioning against it; in addition to the litany of possible negative bodily effects always seeming to get the last 2 lines maximum in any article, no true in depth thought given to what could physically, medically go wrong, are the vastly underplayed societal ramifications equally needing to be combatted, as is public apathy to something that has the potential to exert more control over a person than any object, government entity has a right to. Those who dispute biblical references to the mark of the beast, the eternal damnation comeuppance purportedly visited upon non-Christians to be doled out at a still undetermined date in our distant, not so distant future featured so prominently in the Left Behind book series/movies should ponder the following question left as yet unanswered; if not spiritual consequences, are we in for continuing to use said technology fostering a one world government where, ‘the man,’ apply called ‘big brother’ is in every aspect of your life to far greater degrees than we now constantly must resist, keeping in mind reactions to warrantless wiretapping, NSA surveillance, Edward Snowden anyone, government mass data collection. Worried about the vast number of cameras snapping photos of us throughout any given day; data breaches not only representing disconcerting flaws in our ever dependent technology but anxiety producing hyper vigilance around privacy; who has our data, what they plan to do with it, what technology will let them do with it before laws are crafted to protect us. Said laws being continuously undermined by the current presidential administration just putting forth a bill that would allow internet service providers to sell your browsing history to third parties, surely under the pretense of giving you a better browsing experience, ads only tailored to products interesting you and your family; opposing lawmaker summing it up beautifully, “Give me one good reason why Comcast should know what my mother’s medical problems are,” said congressman Mike Capuano during the hearing before the vote, explaining how he had researched her condition after a trip to the doctor. “Just last week I bought underwear on the internet. Why should you know what size I take? Or the color?” [Sic] All due respect to the congressman’s undergarments and the tinge of silliness housed in the example versus say political searches, employment searches, he is absolutely right on 2 distinct fronts; first, it is none of their business understanding existing law doesn’t say they can’t sell user information only that they must obtain your permission before doing so, respect your decision to opt out, say no to selling the information. Secondly, arguably more important to their financially driven ends, if you flood the person with ads for item X, Y type of underwear in specific brand, color Z it will be futile because you’ve already bought the underwear you need; sidestepping if they were a gift for someone, you’re researching something for the purpose of expanding your knowledge not exclusively for personal use, then sellers of your browsing history have given a false impression to the end recipient of that information meaning they won’t sell to you as successfully as they planned…. Now picture a world where there is no expectation of privacy, it’s all right there in/on your chip and with a simple scan everyone can know everything about you; don’t like it, find it unnecessarily invasive, then you can figure out how to get a job, rent an apartment, buy foods, see a doctor sans a chip when everywhere requires one. Sounds pretty close to the descriptions depicting the mark of the beast to me, unable to buy or sell goods, easily extrapolated own a business, absent a mark, chip, barcode on your hand or forehead, and to a plethora of others; digressing from the spiritual once more, whose response to reports about chip technology to be put inside persons as identification, medical record storage or the cool factor of opening doors at the wave of your hand is to say they would rather starve naked in the woods, live totally off any grid than be subject to that kind of control. Hardly difficult to see why when thinking a short time about it; compounding the perceived invasions of privacy, intrusions on free will we contend with today, try being confronted by your employer because you were tracked to a bar after work by your chip, ‘caught’ with a different girl every night of the week at which point they fired you despite being single. Have credit card debt, student loan debt you’re blocked out of buying that morning latte, any fast food, that outfit or dress never mind if it’s for a major event say a wedding, new clothing for work, cable or internet services, throwing out completely you may use one, perhaps both to get a job, seek a better, higher paying job, you have basic cable because over the air TV no longer works where you live and you still need news and weather, use that to write freelance materials, putting lines on your résumé toward paid work. Also you can forget that car loan, so much as funds to repair your old one being released to you, though its your money you worked hard for, independent your need for a car, vehicle to get to work, earn money to continue making payments on your debt. Welcome to wage garnishment to the nth degree in the 21st century and beyond; shouldn’t we all be proud? Sick, have a chronic medical condition say diabetes no more cake, ice cream, junk food, red meat, soda available for you, dido if you are obese; we are in the midst of an obesity epidemic, to that end no Easter, Halloween, valentines candy. Cake and ice-cream for your kid’s birthday, you still can’t have it; planning a summer barbecue, family reunion or other event with food, where you, yourself plan to eat almost none of the unhealthy things precisely because of your health status, condition, those realities don’t matter. Under this system no need to outlaw foods, vastly regulate the food industry, oh no, just regulate who gets access to what food generating a whole different type of class warfare. Struggle with alcohol addiction, suspected an alcoholic, forgo expensive, repetitively, ‘ineffective’ drug treatment, taxpayer dime funded rehab, merely block them from buying alcohol, history with pills: red flag their medical file to cut off pain medication, gambler prevent them from participating by locking funds, dispatching social, morality police to remove a gambler from an establishment specializing in same, restrict their internet access based on personal history with gambling sites, or the other popular ‘addiction’, porn viewing. Notice operative words in the previous list were suspected and addictions; reasonable proof not required to trigger government imposed freedom restrictions when 99% of the time the singular person hurt is one’s self…. Juxtaposed against the strictly social RFID negatives are technological realities conveniently ignored; we’ve seen the hacking of POS (point of sale) machines where you swipe your credit, debit or store card when making a purchase effecting all the major retailers Home Depot to Target and back again, hacks of major banks JP Morgan Chase to name one, Yahoo’s data breach effecting up to a billion accounts worldwide. Devastating exactly what was affected user names, passwords, security questions meant to add safety, phone numbers, addresses, e-mail addresses, dates of birth happening just under 6 months ago, loudest in the growing white noise of hacks heard about becoming our new normal; previous breaches occurring at the CIA, pentagon pilfering workers, service members social security cards. We’ve seen the vulnerability, drawbacks of smart homes where the internet of things is alive and well, thieves can hack your internet router, home Wi-Fi/internet network and open doors/windows, turn lights on and off, change security codes subsequently robbing you blind without ever having to set one toe into your home, next to impossible to track. And just weeks ago we saw the ‘wannacry’ cyber-attack exploiting a known weakness in Microsoft operating systems software that went global putting at a standstill hospitals and surgeries in the UK, reaching as far away as Mongolia; worse Microsoft was aware of the vulnerability, had created a patch for it but many had not updated their computers. In fact we owe lessened effects in the US to 2 white hat (good guy) hackers who found an uncomplicated way to thwart the attack; over the course of this article’s creation are developing concerns popular Russian made anti-virus software Kaspersky running on a good section of US personal computers, business computer networks, sounding greater alarms government utilized PCs at the US bureau of prisons, select defense department agencies, could be a hidden national security threat requiring whole computer access to achieve the software’s touted protection, a would be tool for enhanced meddling, espionage above and beyond what has been authenticated pertaining to the 2016 election, business spying, intellectual property theft carried out by powers like China…. Domestically substantiating long held fears regarding a cyber-attack on the computers, computer systems that control major networks like city, country electrical grids, water purification and supply facilities, 9-1-1 emergency centers, utility plants, any local nuclear operations, in addition to the foreign threats there’s the hacker who hacked into Dallas Texas tornado sirens and set them off in the middle of the night merely to prove he could do it, to alert officials to the ease with which he pulled it off, a hackers standard way of imploring city, state leaders to fix glaring problems. Giving us a sad glimpse into the future of smart cities, their crippling, possible epidemic starting, national shutdown vulnerabilities that can and will ultimately jeopardize lives if we don’t get smarter in both creating but maintaining technology running them, slated to run them when we discard traditional systems…. Right up there with those headaches we’ve seen when purportedly smart, next generation technology fails spectacularly; the smart dumb fridge that reboots in demo mode after a power outage with the cooling compressor off, result a fridge full of spoiled food, firmware updates to Blu-ray players and you can no longer access your Netflix, Hulu or YouTube accounts through it, Samsung who got into public hot water post stopping produced updates for one player after a measly 3 years. Microsoft made headlines and elicited collective American groans when they announced discontinuance of updates to popular system windows XP, terribly short sighted forgetting its global usage and said usages implications; outer reaches of Mongolia probably are still using it, developing world advancement and cheap software needed on the scale for whole city utilities, emergency services will undoubtedly mean being a couple generations behind the latest Microsoft, wide spread global office, business, record keeping product. Exponentially troubling too tech expert attitudes at home that, if we are running so called out of date tech hacks like ‘wannacy’ are our fault, we are contributing to a growingly devastating problem; oblivious to the reality lesser developed countries can’t upgrade major city systems, medical institutions, critical institution record keeping to windows 10, whatever’s next on a dime and shouldn’t have to….fast forward a few short years and imagine a time, with the gung ho attitude toward RFID, when they aren’t hacking sales devices at stores, hacking hospitals and businesses with so called ransomware, but are actually hacking individuals’ RFID chips, forced to mass reconfigure hundreds to thousands of individual persons chips to get those flights finally moving. Because, contrary to their major current selling point, that imbedding it in several layers of skin makes it harder to hack, RFID is some of the easiest technology to either hack or clone, a system on the whole that is in no way secure, furthest from it actually. Utterly idiosyncratic to the CBS This Morning segment featuring a Swedish tech aficionado doing a presentation, he billed as educating the public on how RFID can help you as well as ways it can be used against you, holding parties where interested citizens can get chipped together, he frankly admitted the chips were insecure, advised not putting your life’s secrets on them. Except held up alongside listed wonders, being able to open everything from your car door to your formerly key-carded office with your hand, your life secrets are your credit cards, your social security number, computer passwords, online account passwords, e-mail to shopping, not just your hush, hush porn habit, kink fetish or diaper obsession, adult baby group membership, your purchases at an adult store. By the numbers, as it stands, identity theft is one of the most expensive threats to handle for the average person spawning security agencies like Life Lock pledging to spend up to a million dollars to resolve your case; holding that thought, put yourself in the position of trying to explain to officials at social security, your bank, the DMV, your doctor’s office your personal chip, residing inside you, has been hacked. The first few hundred cases would be scoffed at, laughed out of institutions, businesses and chalked up to people who didn’t understand how the new tech worked and therefore thought they could escape their bills, pull a fast one claiming to be hacked. To do this, not so incredible hacking, criminals, tech enthusiasts simply create a better skimmer identical to those used to skillfully scan/skim credit card data as you bump into unsuspecting marks in a store, restaurant, skillful skimmers very adept at slapping their own realistic device over ones at the grocery store while keeping you and the cashier dutifully distracted, attached to ATM’s again looking like the real thing so as you enter PIN information it can take you for all you’re worth. Almost guaranteed is they won’t have a mechanism, even with en-masse use, for when early version chips suddenly stop reading or otherwise malfunction locking you out of the ability to perform bank transactions, buy groceries, if technology protagonists and employers a-la Sweden have their way, report to work, be functional, productive once you get there…. Neither, as quickly referenced above, is literally microchipping people medically sound; beyond car accidents, extreme sports causing chip migration that sets off a cascade of possible related health problems extrapolating short or long term into the future, i.e. considering wide spread usage, implantation a matter mandated by law. It is especially disconcerting trying to answer pertinent burning questions: at what age do they implant such a personal data chip, when a child’s hand is big enough to safely tolerate a chip, who determines that safety parameter? Are we looking at a situation where we can no longer practically educate our children on how the world works, how to go through a checkout, teach them money sense, financial literacy by simply letting them use allowance money, birthday dollars to pay for an item due to being too young for chips, chips not allotted to young people until they are 16 and old enough to work? More insidiously if they did microchip babies, toddlers the moment their hands were big enough to tolerate it, hold their chip in its proper place it would doubtlessly increase rates of chip failure and persons having to have more than one input in their lifetime; multiply the chances of chip migration to other parts of the body skyrocketing their potential for heart attacks, strokes, brain bleeds, blood clots, embolisms and aneurisms, serious and often times fatal, amputations when it catches in a major artery and fat or blood collects around it, person oblivious until it’s too late. Would a chip in an infant, toddler, child pre-puberty, the electrical impulses emanating from it interfere with natural development, regular brain electrical impulses, trigger early, so called precocious puberty being bombarded by electrical reading when out in public, prolonged exposure to electrical pulses could it stunt, alter brain growth? Once there is proof of chip migration, for whatever reason, how do you safely remove then replace it remembering it’s mandated by law; what are the risks of said removal procedure, since you are dealing with things roughly the size of a grain of rice is one of the potentially deadly medical complications a bubble in your vein also possible when injecting medicine, illegal drugs intravenously, nicking an artery or vein during attempted removal, suction used to try and extract an errant chip doing identical damage to said arteries, veins? Seems a pretty dire set of choices, near instantaneous death contrasted beside being a health ticking time bomb; less drastically contrary to the idea RFID can be engineered to supplant the Fitbit and Apple watch’s fitness health data collection, concepts behind it as next generation medical monitoring tracking blood pressure, heartrate, signs of everything for irregular heartbeats to stroke, heart attack or onset of diabetes, the soon to be circulated if not already internet meme ‘Fitbit saved my life,’ what happens when your chip inevitably malfunctions sending you scrambling to your doctor, an ER, erroneously dispatching ambulance services, for which you’ll doubtlessly be billed, oh….Which brings us to exactly how many times do we have to see failures of medical devices placed in the body, vaginal mesh lawsuits, hernia mesh recalls to stint apparatuses supposed to prevent blood clots in the lungs that were horribly designed, patently unsafe and the testing corrupted, poorly formed hip replacements, heard about when there’s a class action level lawsuit, major law firm is on TV seeking plaintiffs, before we reduce their number, never mind stop advocating putting foreign objects inside you that have no medical purpose?… common sense says people who are diagnosed with the above, epilepsy, have a pace maker probably shouldn’t add in another electric device to their existing one, certainly not in the name of cool factor, convenience, ultimate government bureaucracy laziness, underlying mentioned control. Epileptics routinely triggered by bright lights, flickering strobe type lights staples during music concerts, stage shows; video game consoles reaching back 20 odd years or more, accompanied by specific games, categories of games have carried the potential for seizure warning. Speaking of people with disabilities, society appears growingly determined to exclude them, make their lives harder, oblivious to the rigors they face daily doing normal activities most take for granted; how difficult it is to bank, buy things, travel through an airport when you can’t wave your arm well in front of a scanner or hold your head up well for a forehead barcode scanner due to advanced Parkinson’s MS, cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy, results of an accident rendering you quadriplegic. Forced to sacrifice what little independence, dignity they possess, shouldering a financial burden utilizing a care attendant to bag their groceries at the store because electronic check outs and a fully chipped society have removed actual people from said venues cutting down on business operating costs. Often too readily dismissed gaps between cutting edge medical marvels helping children with cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, those newly diagnosed with degenerative, progressive diseases, chronic ailments and individuals who were born with their condition and have dealt with the effects 20, 30 years, people who, according to studied medical data on treatment X, will receive little or no benefit due to the stage of their disease, underlying wear and tear, secondary problems of say cerebral palsy on muscle and bone, prior surgeries to correct deformities, aid in walking, limb function. People who will thus still require, continue using assistive services, adaptive technologies evolving and continuing to be made; a plethora of reaching grabbing tools for people with varied physical disabilities, automatic door openers on public places, specialized easy open door handles for home, transfer apparatuses for showers, the computer generated voice computer set up used by Steven Hawking, those afflicted by debilitating degenerative conditions. Developmentally delayed Americans, frightening rises in rates of neurological disorders on par with autism and its spectrum of disorders, behavioral manifestations need a whole different set of assistance tools, long term care well into adulthood; here are people who may need to hold a paper bus pass, bus pass punch card to understand it, apps like Autismate facilitating communication among the non-verbal garner such success with featured case Joe because they use video of the actual person performing the desired task, doing the selected activity compensating for spectrum disorder persons’ lacking imagination, easing frustrations decoding symbols for tasks, activities they don’t comprehend. Understanding, comprehension an advocacy point pushing past a quark board, set of refrigerator magnets has never been hacked for keeping intact the United States postal service, paper bill statements, mortgage and insurance policy statements sent to senior citizens, remaining an option for older Americans who don’t possess computer skills or good ones, who can’t afford internet, computer and printer, combat age related limited mobility to frequent the local library, senior center to conduct such business, print paper copies of bills, banking statements…Some may be quick to point out lines in the introduction about hardly believed in spiritual consequences, only speculated government control a speck on a still distant horizon of maybe, referencing common knowledge medical techniques, devices and call out hypocrite; highlighting no one is screaming mark of the beast about them ready to chalk that portion up to lunatic religious fanatics. While concurrently giving a short history of modern medicine resistance to new techniques Jehovah’s witnesses that think, to this day, a blood transfusion is the same as occult blood drinking mentioned in the bible, people who shuddered at the concept of organ transplants believing they desecrated the dead to finding it plain grotesque to have another person’s organs inside you, pro-life advocates who believe life begins at conception and wish those lives prior to reaching medically/scientifically determined fetus stage, zygote, gamete level be granted personhood, full rights of any citizen under the law, one must realize that pace makers, cochlear implants for the deaf, hearing impaired and hard of hearing, even the new technology implanted into a paralyzed man’s brain to use in conjunction with a standard computer is meant to restore functions. Pacemakers regulate the heart to beat normally allowing a person to live and not die, correct suffering arrhythmia that can stop the heart completely; cochlear implants bypass the damaged portion of the ear transmitting sound impulses to the brain allowing a form of hearing. Subcutaneous insulin pumps are primarily outside the body except for the tube dispensing insulin at select times, wearable glucose monitors routinely worn by type 1 diabetic kids, are adhered the skin again on the outside of the body preventing dangerous highs and lows especially while sleeping producing happy side effects of saving young lives still outdone by diabetic alert dogs increasingly common place and slated to take over, if we haven’t found a cure, better treatment in coming decades. Think pancreas islet cell replacement via stem cells stimulating the body to make its own insulin, the failure causing type 1diabetes. Remember the height of the embryonic stem cell research debate, science surpassed it by finding different places for essentially blank stem cells that could be converted to any cell, tissue, organ in the body, cord blood and resulting cord blood banks storing umbilical cord blood to name one; cancer treatment progressed to using chemo therapy, radiation to eradicate the cancer then take either bone marrow or stem cells for the persons own body, re-implanting them cancer free; lifesaving methods when transplants weren’t available, rare matches couldn’t be found. The circuit board-esque system the young man featured had attached to his brain A- was intended to bypass his damaged spinal cord allowing limited limb movement for basic tasks i.e. holding/grasping a spoon, swiping a credit card similar to advances in prosthetics; futuristic medical machinery to stop epilepsy or curb obesity are correcting malfunctions and dysfunctions all, not necessarily using computer chips or omni-trackable. B-none are engineered capable of self-awareness evolving into a Skynet like hell scape, are in no way sophisticated enough to supplant or override human thought, impulses, basic will; key too is it uses a person’s own thoughts, recognition of brain impulses to control the artificial limb, sent though the device rigging as opposed to the spinal column to achieve movement. A leg up from deep brain stimulation used to control Parkinson’s tremors, Tourette’s ticks, balance mood in major depressive patients who’ve tried everything else, offered in extreme cases for weight control of morbidly obese persons to staunch cravings, but absent any chance to influence a person’s cognitive ability, will, desire. Finally, C- represent stop gap technology until we can either generate an artificial spine, already in the research works, or totally organically progress stem cell treatment to completely repairing devastating spinal injury….RFID, most importantly is a complex, prone to malfunction redundancy piled onto redundancy; jumping well past fear inducing scenarios generated from contemplations on should our futuristic one system for everything suddenly crash is ever expanding proof once and for all we don’t need it, it solely invents new problems without solving the old ones…Countering chicken little ism thought we must eventually do this or else there will be no privacy, security, reasonable means to protect ourselves, buy good, services, merchandise independent being robbed blind, new forms of protecting and verifying identity crop up daily including Pulse Wallet that works by scanning the veins in your forearm, ideal for someone who has been in an accident whose face is prominently disfigured, who may have also lost finger prints, one or both hands. Smart home alternatives to traditional locks feature a key pad to enter codes of authorized persons than when entered will unlock the door; thumb print scanning home door locks are a little lesser known but widely available. Easily adaptable to disability accessible needs; voice recognition doors placement of thump, retinal scanner into a wheelchair, mobility device likely coming quicker than accessibility parameters to mass use devices predictably looking identical to airport body scanners. Key fobs are todays keyless entry people, you don’t even need your key to start the vehicle with the starter buttons hello; inclined to think waving your hand and having your car unlock is still the height of cool, hackers are well on their way to stealing cars via hacking, giving up good old fashioned grand theft auto for pilfering the information from your car’s very own key fob, all the more proof and reason we don’t want them hacking us, our RFID chip to abscond with our wheels. Simplistic safeguard for key fob code theft, when you lock your doors upon getting out go ahead and press that lock button 2-3 extra times resetting the codes and rendering any code taken useless; almost guaranteed is they won’t have that uncomplicated a fix for a first, second even 3rd generation hacked chip. Car dealers already have means to disable your vehicle if you miss a payment much to the chagrin and danger of a women trying to juggle her chronic kidney disease, constant need for dialysis and an eventual kidney transplant plus her car payment, stories of parents trying to get their child to an emergency room, parent having stopped somewhere and the child is left stranded at a school; further alerts about such devices were about how they were used, lack of regulation, dangers if the dealer isn’t paying attention when the shut off the vehicle, only failsafe is the car can’t be moving. But there you go a tool for both non-payers and something to activate should the car be stolen, comparable the i-phone kill switch installed after people were literally being attacked and killed for their next generation i-product before being able to use it; switch rendering it useless if stolen removing the incentive for violence over a piece of entertainment technology…. Read More

INDIE MUSIC NEWS

Pepsi Ad Controversy: It’s Black Hermione, CBS’ Pledge Of Allegiance Debate All Over Again Race And Issue Batting We Don’t Have Time For

Proof you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t whether you try to stay above the fray as CBS did or try to make a statement, be culturally relevant, positively impactful even while selling soda, candy, entertainment, foods. And no, America doesn’t need a better, more attuned emotional quotient unless it involves not falling for these non-scandals, but certainly not in terms of avoiding the ‘Kendal Jenner’ ad as it has since been dubbed or immediately recognizing why it is offensive. Because just as fans, the internet’s debate of a black Hermione for the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child stage production had nothing to do with race and everything to do with J.K. Rowling’s constant additions, revisions, inconsistencies and incongruent information sessions during, but especially post, series following in the unfortunate steps of George Lucas and Star Wars, leading to a situation making casting a black Hermione the way they did completely silly and untrue to the character. Dawning comprehension CBS’ rejection of a cute little girl reciting the pledge of allegiance had absolutely nothing to do with the unpatriotic, un-American sentiments of network bigwigs, an attempt to appease secular humanist liberals, social justice whine-o’s who want to annihilate America’s cultural history, generate a forced utopia as fake as reality television with twice the devastation, and was contrastingly centered around its ill-fit to sell real estate, varying kinds of insurance for those properties even to a local audience viewing an annual rodeo event. Because they knew where opinions would fall on both sides, the further likely spawned uproar regarding using patriotism to sell a product, any product versus say giving to charity; lively discussions talking about using a child in such a shameless way, not to mention the added, special permissions needed to use children in such commercials, particularly scrutinizing known exploitation revealed running wild in Hollywood on top of the droves of lost young stars, ruined young talent chewed up and spit out by too much pressure too soon. All detracting from the goal: to sell insurance, draw business to your firm, agency, group, bring in dollars for the TV network; CBS, reading the landscape tealeaves, shrewdly said no thank you. Returning us to the latest hot button, trending topic, social media explosion cranking out article after article, warranting a nightly news mention, Pepsi’s gamble arguably should have been worth it offering a totally different message that should have resonated rather than making people feel patronized, their struggle cheapened, angling a bid for unity, defacto providing recognition in a more vibrant, lasting form than endless protest footage on wall to wall cable news….
General consensus seems to be Pepsi should have just stayed out of it, found another way to sell their product without being utterly tone deaf to the mood of the country; belying to ridiculing the seriousness of resistance and what it means to the activists, people fighting for life, livelihood, the lives of their children, justice for unfathomable wrong those who’ve never experienced it simultaneously can never understand. Situations sufferers already feel the rest of America doesn’t see, white people pre-privileged out of the womb, handed opportunities as their defacto birthright wouldn’t know how to live, function or succeed without and why are you making it worse in the process of selling soda, something you have a thousand other ways to sell it might be added? Recurring theme here, aren’t we putting too much stock in a soda ad, what people could possibly get out of aforementioned soda ad, giving it their maximum attention and let’s face it who does that today with anything forget a commercial, not part of the super bowl set meant to grab and keep your rapt attention costing millions to make and the only consistent time throughout the year you can get a mass audience focused on the same thing at the same time. Commercials, shock and awe, drawing attention to something they, viewers, may not particularly like, won’t necessarily buy, may prefer Coke, Mountain Dew, Doctor Pepper or Root Beer over Pepsi, the unique beverage not the brand…. Further tackling the accusation Pepsi used other people’s pain to sell a product, a particularly crass product in the form of soda with no intrinsic value, hold it; you mean they did what advertisers every one have done for decades going back to the first newspapers, traveling salesmen peddling elixirs, tonics throughout the old west laced with every kind of drug and not fulfilling half their claims, shock everything seen in a commercial isn’t real? Perhaps people need a reality check on the fundamental nature of advertising then along with a twin dose of recognition Pepsi’s advertising tactic is no different than funds solicited for St. Jude or Shriners hospitals, the ASPCA, religious program documentation of abysmal conditions for faith X and needing viewers’ financial help to change it, pictures of the drought induced famine underway in Africa; equally the links to donation options posted on ABC’s website, the donations accumulated from something billed an informational newscast segment. Few see anything wrong with that excepting possibly televangelists bilking grandmas out of social security checks if that wasn’t a stereotypical slanted trope to begin with; quite the opposite argument, the segment was done in hopes it would both make people aware and elicit donations to help save lives. Unhindered and widely un-objected to products do the same too from hair removal wands to bathtub and sink scrubbers, specialty mops whose top selling point is either no need to visit a doctor, pay for expensive electrolysis treatments to remove unsightly hair or clean your home with ease sans bending to reach shower corners, be on your hands and knees to effectivity clean floors. What about specially tubs ideal for elderly persons permitting them to stay in their homes, life alert and adjacent systems of wearable devices connecting elderly disabled persons to emergency help; again granted mentioned causes, attempts to sell certain products are for their target audience’s good making it possible to stay at home safely, mitigating fall, bone breaking hazards for our growing elderly population, convenience cleaning items holding positive implications for older individuals, those with disabilities, painful injuries, but isn’t that always advertising’s angle, even soda can enhance your life with a better tasting drink? Additionally, despite the current political climate, data surrounding the election of president Trump, emboldened hate groups of all stripes, first and foremost white supremacy, spewing their views at every turn, feeling justified in saying what they’ve sadly been thinking for quite some time, directed hate toward African Americans, Muslims, LGBT persons; our activist climate, numerous protests are proof more people want diversity, inclusion than don’t… Too blaming Kendal Jenner, who it has to be pointed out between laborious character assassinations, independent who her family is, the sizeable wealth she stands to inherit at some juncture in her life, may have already inherited since 21 is the standard age for such inheritances to activate chooses to work anyway, unless working in some aspect is tied to receiving inheritance monies, continuing to receive said monies. Kendal Jenner, who regardless of unknown stipulations placed on her in reference to accessing family wealth seems to enjoy the work she does, has several modeling, business venture and writing gigs to her name, belying her fame and popularity comes exclusively from appearing on her family’s reality TV show. Jenner who technically, theoretically, if she ‘truly wanted to work’, be a ‘normal’ contributor to society could have become a doctor, lawyer, teacher, social worker; however, in the longstanding climate of who you know outpacing, outperforming what you know when it comes to career entrance and mobility, she arguably did the right thing parlaying her family knowledge of the business, not just name connections, into opportunities for herself. Nor is she unique in doing so the Olsen twins did the same thing both during and post their Full House years, Hillary Duff, Miley Cyrus, several former Disney stars including Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears, Selina Gomez branched out significantly from their beginnings; neither is she responsible for the current state, the longstanding state of the industry she elected to work in because it made the most sense, she appears to have a talent for, worthy to keep in mind she is new and just works there. To that end, she showed up to do a job, unknown is if she petitioned Pepsi for the gig, maybe her agent did; stars of her caliber, looking to gain jobs routinely have one, at which point he’s merely doing his job in securing his client meaningful paid work. And, everyone in acting, modeling, TV, show business, by the way, puts in their time, pays their dues doing small parts, underwear ads, TV commercials before hitting it big, moving on to better, greater projects. News at 11:00, bashing Kendal Jenner for being white, privileged and successful all at once is not only reverse racism personified, it will not change race dynamics in this country…. Never mind who exactly is paying that much attention to commercials, who would see it anyway calculating the number of households steadily cutting their cable cords, trading in expensive cable packages for a Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime subscription combo giving them better quality programing and a distinct lack of ads, Roku, Apple TV, Chromecast creating similar effect, internet purposefully crafting ads based on user search histories virtually eliminating ads for things that don’t interest that specific person…. . When all else fails, you actually are dealing with old school audience members the invention of the mute button and the fact we all know watchers head for the refrigerator, the bathroom as commercials start takes huge chunks out of the body of persons you’re reaching; before going off shelves entirely VCR’s held an auto-fast-forward activated during commercials no one wanted to see, common knowledge people pause shows using their TiVo, TiVo usage reducing ads seen as well multiplying the fold reduction of people viewing the ad, translating into, again why are we talking about this period, still talking about it?…. Talk about a distraction, wasting ink, talking points, news segment space over Pepsi or Kendal Jenner in this instance is a trolls and the Trump agenda win; because while we were talking about Pepsi’s bad ad in the context of anything other than this is what gives so called social justice warriors a bad name, remarking it leaves them open to being called ‘snowflake,’ pansy ass real things were happening that effect broader swaths of the American people in much realer ways than perceptions from a soda commercial. Setting aside ongoing escalations with North Korea, how the French election impacts Europe, reshapes functional parts of the world, what Russia is doing today to manipulate us, someone else, undermine democracy globally there’s what’s happening here at home, local legislation going on behind the national scenes. Example, do you live in South Carolina, are you of child bearing age; then you might be interested in their latest push to outlaw abortion with hot off the presses incarnations of a personhood bill. For or against LGBT rights, issue neutral: North Carolina you voted out Pat McCrory over the bathroom bill backlash costing the state millions if not billions in revenue from lost advertising, canceled concerts, celebrity and other boycotts, business withdraw, not to mention the NCAA, NBA and every other national basketball organization fleeing the state, so shouldn’t you be more upset they are spending legislative energy trying to overturn the Supreme Court’s decision on gay marriage at least as far as North Carolina is concerned?… Everyone should be paying attention to the flurry of executive orders, regulation rollbacks issuing from the Whitehouse including ones allowing coal mines to dump their waste in rivers, slash safety regulations for workers not to mention potentially their overtime pay, a new religious liberty order greenlighting religious institutions’ foray and monetary donations into politics, possibly streamline with ease discriminating against both contraception and LGBT persons when it refers to religious landlords and employers…Zika funding may end by summer 2017 for want of funding for tracking effects, devastating birth defects i.e. microcephaly and the documented 58 cases, prevention; Zika on track to wreak more havoc as there is an outbreak in Texas ahead of traditional mosquito season even for such a warm area. Stoppage of Zika funding removes too mosquito control that could cut down on other health effects, viruses and sickness carried by the insects, end patient education about the virus, its transmission, potential devastation on pregnancy and the resulting infants. Major headlines are focused recently on healthcare, tax cuts as they should be; sadly meanwhile republicans are likewise very quietly doing all they can to erase precious few gained financial regulations enacted post the financial crisis—chipping away at Dodd/Frank , weakening the consumer protection bureau behind banking regulations, controlling credit card fees, revoking rule preventing commercial banks from risky speculative investments, shrinking the too big to fail test, elongating timeframes between tests to discern health of financial institutions posing a risk to the entire system, paving the way for increased debit/credit card fees. GOP tax proposals released to media beyond projected to explode the deficit, amounting to little more than massive tax cuts for the rich, consisted of one page double spaced bullet points in more fonts than most knew were available in standard word processing programs, extremely light on details pushed out just prior to Trump’s 100 day mark embodying a play on the saying Jesus is coming look busy; this time constituents are watching look busy…What offends me more than any celebrity, white celebrity doing just about anything, let alone seen in an ad for whatever product racist or no, is minorities paying greater premiums, greater amounts for car insurance for no conceivable reason other than they weren’t born white. Held up alongside people who don’t understand, nor want to understand, initiatives like affirmative action continuing to insist our race problems nationally are in the past, and anyone speaking out about race issues now, it’s all in our heads. Collective society concurrently doubling down on the portrait, narrative black people are Hulk Hogan sized monstrous thugs who need to stop going out committing felonies if they want to be seen otherwise while minorities in F towns like Ferguson Missouri are targeted for traffic stops, jay walking, breaking hardly known ordinances on old cars situated on your own property in order to fill city coffers. And poorer minorities or whites are victims of court systems only open 1 day per month, are miles away from where the ‘defendant’ lives; such persons forced to languish in jail, unable to contribute to their own defense because they can’t afford bail. Cops are caught on tape telling their subordinates to arrest more black people coupled with a jury who couldn’t convict cold blooded murderer, laughing former police officer Michael Slager for the life of them or 50 year old Walter Scott…Offending more still, police manage to avoid charges in the brutal slaying of Alton Sterling though they had him on his back and shot 2 bullets point blank into his chest while kneeling on him; gun he bought to protect himself from area muggings during the course of hocking CD’s out of his car trunk giving what little monetary support to his kids he could after amassing a ‘criminal record’ under previously described F-town conditions, found in his pocket. Officers plainly appearing to panic the moment they emptied his pockets discovering the gun, somehow forgetting as pinned down as he was he couldn’t have reached it anyway. The enraging case of 15 year old 9th grader, honor student Jordan Edwards gunned down by police leaving a party where police allegedly were called to a noise complaint; why, the car came towards the officer in an aggressive manner, claims proven false by body cam footage, as was apparently reports by responding officer(s) of shots fired. Escalating my offense level is, the proms that weren’t desegregated until double digit years of the 21st century because they were hitherto held in private venues, the Mississippi school courts ordered in 2016 to desegregate deemed acceptable until then due to railroad tracks dividing essentially 2 area middle and high schools, not race exclusively ending a legal fight began in the 1960’s. The Alabama school allowed by federal court ruling to return to what is basically segregation or the Florida principal of a largely black school who instructed staff to put all white students in the same class…What offends me more is our society wide failed understanding why personalities a-la Ann Coulter and Milo Yiannopoulos never should have been invited to speak on any college campus anywhere, anytime; yes, we know college campus violence, mass protest is rare, most college students are worried about being awake for their first class, passing professors’ pop quizzes, doing well on finals and that Berkley has always been a flashpoint through previous decades, times of national upheaval, unrest for protests. However, problems with the named persons, other headline making commencement addressees, event speakers is not owing to they are conservative and campuses are primarily liberal, not that the term ‘safe space’ has gone so far students think they have the right not to hear viewpoints, different, opposing from their own, coopting too many administrators and professors into believing the same, willing to desecrate free speech by not allowing them to speak in the process. Converse to all that millennial gen Z stemming drama, it’s said speakers behavior, prior, present statements disqualifying them the same way revelations about Bill O’Reilly, Rodger Ailes, Bill Cosby and Shawn Hannity mark them undesirable. The same way we wouldn’t invite a holocaust denier, 9/11, Sandy hook truther to spew their hate; it’s one thing to not impede freedom of speech, it’s another to hand hate, vitriol, inciting of violence and obnoxiousness a podium. The same way climate change deniers, all/most birth control is abortifacient champions would be unwelcome, because the things they are saying are factually inaccurate. Highly offending under listed criteria is why people are confused at uproar over Condoleezza Rice’s Rutgers commencement speech invite years before or Betsy DeVos’ days ago, blaming the students for protests, trying to ban speakers the antithesis of the event they are scheduled to speak during when that falls to, talk about tone deaf, administrators; administrators who should have been cognizant that Rice receiving an honorary doctorate in law hypocritically, not only could be viewed but was, inappropriate. Considering her prattling on beside her boss George W. Bush about WMD that very probably did not exist, her support of water boarding, themed attitude leading to incidents like Abu Ghraib; her actions, support of actions taken during aforementioned administration leading many far removed from social justice warrior college campus snowflakes to believe she should be tired for war crimes. Astute protesting students stating had she been invited to a panel on ethics during war, her administrations, presidential administrations in general’s response, declarations of war, modern warfare as seen in Iraq, Afghanistan Syria, Yemen exc., ethics in modern warfare vis-a-vis the preceding instances she would have been both welcomed and respectfully heard, even if profoundly disagreed with. DeVos on the other hand represents something distasteful to the institution of education itself, incompetence, a job achieved by deep pockets and cronyism while knowing nothing about it; evidenced by her confirmation hearing where she couldn’t answer the most basic questions regarding debates in approaches to education, achievement measuring, is totally clueless on the challenges facing public schools, has never attended one herself, allowed her children to attend a public school, even plagiarizing senate questionnaire answers, irony lost only on her. Provoking legitimate fears, understanding her religious background, she will privatize, monetize through tuition fees, charter schools now public K-12 Ed.; also unsettling her financial support for gay so called conversion therapy and the largely religious institutions who practice it, a practice one state has taken steps to outlaw on persons under 18 cataloging the devastating psychological effects. Sealing her dunce like fate in the minds of even high school flunkies, never mind college educated students set to graduate admonished at the ceremony where DeVos tried to speak, scenes from her confirmation hearing where, when asked about guns in schools and do guns have any place there, presumably in the hands of security guards, conceal and carry authorized teachers to prevent, mitigate loss of life if confronted with an active shooter situation she suggested guns were needed in Wapiti Wyoming to protect students from grizzly bears, footage readily available to mildly tech savvy persons on the internet. What offends me more is looking at the march for science, the climate march, going back to the women’s march beginning of the year comprehending we’ve needed a march on each one of those subjects plus many others besides in growing pockets of the nation for a solid decade or longer when Texas schoolboards decided to whitewash history books translating to the whole nation because the largest maker of textbooks manufacturing facilities are concentrated there, when one state tried to craft an AP history class solely out of the 10 commandments and Reagan speeches, scaling back biology, physiology at the high school level to accommodate abstinence only sex ed. And we’re just now getting national attention to what’s been happening when president Trump was elected? Read More

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