Tag Archives: ABC 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

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

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

Why Copenhagen will Never Work in the U.S.

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

Re-post original creation date 2009…The Denmark model still has bigger issues than public perception of conservation or government policies; on many practical levels the models would not work for countries, like the US, with large populated landmasses. The whole of Denmark is roughly the size of Minnesota, so in discussing replacement of traditional gas stations with electric outlets designed for cars to be able to plug in and charge or battery exchange stations for long cross country trips, they are talking both less dollars in replacement of technology and less exchange stations needed. Many people in Copenhagen bike to work, school stores, that becoming the primary mode of transportation other than public transit systems; however biking, and the other popular alternative walking, presents problems. Not just in terms of out of shape Americans not physically healthy enough to pull it off, but in terms of weather extremes, hot and cold that make it next to impossible to bike or walk even the majority of the time. In Copenhagen it is done only April through October; persons interviewed for a PBS special leading up to the climate summit said nothing about what they do the rest of the year. Other obstacles in America or major cities worldwide are walking becomes dangerous with so many cars on the road; America cannot afford the daunting infrastructure changes necessary to make things safer for pedestrians. Walking and biking also make you more of a target for crime, ripe for the picking when it comes to theft and assault. Read More

The Problem With “Female Bodies and Alcohol”: Stop Framing Campus Sexual Assault As A Drinking Issue—Agree To Disagree A Critique

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

We will do anything but teach alcohol education, consent education, legal definitions of rape… Also addressing changing public attitudes on key social issues like criminal responsibility while under the influence of substances, ‘I was high’ uttered by defendants or victims in court meant to explain why the gas station clerk was heinously shot during the commission of a robbery you admit to participating in, doesn’t cut it anymore. ‘I was high’ is no longer an excuse to why you can’t account for your whereabouts on the night in question for a crime to which you have pled not guilty, no longer explains away the vicious beating of your girlfriend. Bad trips, laymen’s terms for bad illegal drug reactions, have ceased to be an acceptable reason eliciting leniency from judges, jurors for extreme vandalism or otherwise seen as random attacks of persons on the streets, stopped being a blanket understood concept of ‘how can you expect me to be responsible for what I did,’ years ago. ‘I was drunk,’ long abandoned as a believable defense when causing death or injury to people with your car, motorcycle or boat, any kind of motor vehicle. And following historical lines in the modern era is fast becoming less of an excuse why it is ok to be judgmentally impaired enough to think raping someone is ok, then actually doing it. But equally for victims, it is unacceptable they can’t remember significant events surrounding the incident due to, not the drugs in their system, not the thing someone slipped into their drink, rather their alcohol consumption, again not liquor they were plied with by a predator, even coerced into drinking via peer pressure, ever popular drinking games everywhere you turn in college, instead willing alcohol ingestion, type of liquor (usually hard liquor) they indulged in. Nor is it wrong, seeing what’s clearly going on, to put out pamphlets talking about alcohol, even one titled ‘Female Bodies and Alcohol’ bullet pointing facts that weighing less, having less muscle mass than men and a different hormonal makeup, more hormonal fluctuations than men you metabolize alcohol differently may, and probably will, feel it’s effects sooner and more acutely, therefore need to drink accordingly. Neither is it overly condescending to begin a guide “We like to think men and women are equal in all things, right,” because they’ve been brought up all their lives to believe this, which socially is true and a message very much needed; however, that doesn’t apply to science, physiology, the basis for their information. Men and women are not equal when their bodies process alcohol…Gaging then campus response, appropriateness of that response is to likewise remember, even post Todd ‘legitimate rape’ Akin, how many high profile sex assault allegations, on campus rapes have been proven false, utterly made up. Going all the way back to the Duke lacrosse case to present day stories like Jackie’s, subject of the since retracted Rolling Stone article…And when it comes to athletes, high school, college and beyond they are natural targets due to their social status, wealth; Duke’s accused played lacrosse, Brock Turner was what, a swimming star, Steubenville assailants later convicted played what, football, the Massachusetts case receiving similar sentencing and attention involved a high school basketball star mirroring Derrick Rose, following in the dubious footsteps of Kobe Bryant off the court and found not liable in is on sex scandal case plays what, basketball. Now this could just as much be about athletes who think, because they are brilliant with a ball, gifted in a sport they are god and have narrowed their perception to seeing women as objects, or it could be some women are looking to be with an athlete, mad about rejection, seeking money. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle differentiated on a case by case basis. Prime example, convoluted story of Brian Banks, charged, tired and convicted as a promising 16 year old up and coming football star, sounds an awful lot like Steubenville doesn’t it; eventually cleared after 10 years, 5 in prison, 5 on parole, contact with the Innocence Project and an accuser recant, finally getting his dream football chance. Welcome to what victims, authorities and the, trying to discern it all, public are up against…. There are a thousand and one things wrong with how universities in general, Stanford specifically, handle sexual assault, handle under age, binge drinking, any issues cropping up involving mass student safety, learning and enrichment; this guide wasn’t one of them. Discouraging fellow members of the swim team, counterpart members of the women’s swim team from writing their own victim impact statements to the judge describing their own strange, creepy, uncomfortable encounters with Brock Turner, possibly speaking to sexually predatory behavior, evidence society may need to watch him long after this incident, proof he perhaps belongs on the sex offender registry rockets to the top of the list… UVA’s ‘don’t go to frat parities’ mandate stands out as the most condescending and offensive to women. Or officials blaming the campus newspaper for their decreased reporting in sexual assaults post their publishing stories of an associate professor’s sexual harassment and assault of students; University of Kentucky staff at The Kernel (the publications name) put forth it’s the exact opposite, more people are coming to Kernel staff because they distrust the university, awareness and reassurance it’s not their fault, they can speak up and receive support, justice helps too… But backing up a step, where are the fundamentals of personal safety, party safety, bar safety, concert safety we’ve tried to drill into our citizenry, focused on this age group, people who regularly frequent above venues? Let’s too dismiss the notion general party, personal safety rules, regardless of the guide’s wording, what it covered, is sexist; watching your drink, monitoring it being poured, not leaving it alone, applies to anyone looking at the increasing numbers of homosexual, bisexual, transgender, non-traditional encounters, situations showing that as the increasing norm… . To that end what were you doing, in the case of Brock Turner’s victim, unconscious behind a dumpster; not because you had been hit over the head, physically assaulted, robbed, not because you had something dropped into your drink, suddenly had a medical episode, heart attack, seizure, asthma attack, succumbed to meningitis you thought was the flu, are homeless and want a place un-harassed by the mean public to sleep, but because you had had too much to drink, have/had no awareness of alcohol’s effect on your unique body?… Massachusetts high school basketball player convicted of raping 2 girls and receiving only probation depicted 2 girls having gone to a bedroom to lie down, reading in between the lines, to sleep it off, and being penetrated with his finger as they slept. He denied touching one girl at all, apologized to the other as well as telling the court when she didn’t protest, he thought it was ok; victim precipitating his light sentence via her impact statement saying he didn’t want to ruin his life, didn’t think jail time was necessary, hints the light sentence everyone is blaming everything from bad judges, to ‘rape culture’ to ‘white privilege’ for. Except, rewind what were you doing sleeping in some strange house, post a house party, crawling off to a room surrounded by people you barely know, don’t know at all, drunk people you barely know, don’t know at all, likely without telling a soul where you were going to sleep thinking you would be safe?…Bringing us to St. Paul’s prep school and Owen Labrie, less about alcohol and more about non-existent safety instincts…You met a boy you were chatting online with, who went to your school true, on the roof of your school; online to real life meet up’s 101 meet in a public place, then later go on a date alone once you are around person X, sense if he is a threat or not, if he is who he says he is unlike the BYU student who met with and was then raped by a guy who lied about everything—age, marital status. Agreeing with the Salon link below, it has to be about women trusting their gut, young women developing that gut, those sets of protective instincts… lone felony related to using a computer to lure a minor, divulging the path to his lighter sentence. Vanderbilt’s headline making rape case, unquestioning these young men were despicable, especially confronted by accusations an ex-boyfriend orchestrated the whole thing, the 2 photo takers didn’t step up and ask what are you doing, hey stop this, sentence more fitting for the last one to be convicted, seeing the singular reason we know about this is surveillance footage. Yet we come around again to the redundant question of what were you doing so drunk you passed out to the point they could carry you around, drag you back to his room and not once did you wake up; remembering there are accusations the former boyfriend orchestrated and manipulated things, part of that manipulation however wasn’t drugging her drink…. common denominator alcohol, way past too much of it combined beside terrible instincts; underscoring the crystal clear, none of these excuse rape, should never excuse rape, but going back to dissecting the base article, certainly explains why there is such a guide, why Stanford is trying to limit alcohol and focusing on alcohol at all. It bolsters it was written exactly as it should have been, sexist, condescending or not, judging by behavior exhibited here…. It’s blatantly obvious we will do anything but talk to our kids about culturally relevant developments regarding drinking, particularly binge drinking, dangers of alcohol poisoning, party culture, sex, consent, even what constitutes a healthy relationship then we want to come down with the fury of god’s own thunder on young people, young boys/men repeatedly for things they didn’t do or say proliferated by social media in addition to legal charges they face…. First seeing widespread evidence of just that when the Steubenville saga began; Michael Nodianos’ sickening ranting video about an incident he wasn’t part of was attributed to both him as well as Ma’lik Richmond and Trent Mays, though they never said any such things. Likewise every mean tweet calling her a wh*re, death threats for daring to charge her attackers that came from others landed on their shoulders….amplified when Ma’lik Richmond got out and his lawyer said patently offensive things upon his release from juvenile detention talking about how hard things had been for him…Forgotten, that’s his lawyer and part of his lawyer’s job in a high profile case like his is to present his client in the best light while he Ma’lik Richmond kept his head down and his mouth closed, no hint of criminal activity ever again years later. Identically Bock Turner’s father makes a comment about his son’s sentence, sex offender status, lifetime ban from swimming exc. being a steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action and all the sudden we see the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, exactly where he got his views on women and sex, but he’s held accountable for his father’s words, he doesn’t control, the judge’s sentence he didn’t have anything to do with other than writing a statement, something every defendant in his position has the opportunity to do; no he’s not. He is solely responsible for what he did and the impact it had on his victim, society, more than enough to contend with… Because it’s not as if we’ve ever misconstrued a situation, more information through greater investigation trumped admittedly preliminary speculations on crime X committed by teen Y featured on the nightly news; wait that’s every modern case for 2 plus decades if it involves the latest heinous, depraved thing done by children/teens, drunk/high college students… On the other side a court just found Rolling Stone liable for the defamation of UVA’s college dean in reference to their story later retracted story “A Rape on Campus” and what happened to Jackie…. We will do anything but teach whether that’s sex education that includes conversations about healthy relationships, consent, too many conservatives afraid what students will actually learn about their own bodies… In direct opposition to alcohol education and how what you drink, what type/kind of liquor you consume affects your impairment level, we would prefer to stick to don’t drink your underage, don’t drink and drive you’ll die, because it’s simpler for us, doesn’t cover nuance or conflicting messages; never thinking to teach responsible drinking in preparation for when they are legally able to drink. In light of legalization in an increasing number of states marijuana education a-la what Colorado is doing, broadening it to a comprehensive explanation of the differences between all illicit drugs, their addictiveness, their danger to your body, impact of prescription drug abuse, instead of treating all illicit drugs equally, as the same kind of off the charts horrible, when teens find out that’s not true discarding every other thing you said. Oh no, absolutely not, on the contrary one California mother and police officer didn’t want her state to legalize pot because it will be more prevalent and challenging for kids to say no, though the legal age for recreational use will be identical to alcohol 21, most states have decriminalized 1-2 joint amounts, “there will be more people driving DUI, losing their lives”… Stanford bans alcohol in X quantity for select younger students, no one ever putting together k-12 education stops at 18, college students will turn 21 before graduating, maybe we ought to educate them on the differences in types of alcohol, gender differences and alcohol. Floating so much as the idea people getting sick, falling down, slurring their words is not responsible drinking; responsible drinking… returning again to the base article critique the author talks angrily and incredulously about, “What is frustrating in these ongoing campaigns, however, is the tone is almost always focused on what women can do to not get raped instead of how men can conduct themselves to not rape people.” As if it’s the simplest thing in the world, as if no decent person should ever have to be told this and it’s a sad commentary on society we do, when it’s so much more nuanced than that; here being where feminists and women’s rights activists earn parts on their bad name… 99% of the time we aren’t dealing with future sexual predators, budding serial, habitual rapists as much as drastically uninformed, misinformed young people; even Brock Turner whose behavior points to that possibility, it’s hard to know if he would never have done those things with a father who said more than his measly sentence was a steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action. Ma’lik Richmond told the ABC interviewer what he thought rape was, jumping out of an alley and attacking a girl, forcing yourself on her in that context, saying he didn’t do that, elaborating later he didn’t rape anyone, see a rape going on and if he had seen one he would have stopped it. David Becker the Massachusetts high school student found guilty of rape sincerely told the judge he thought his victim’s lack of protest meant it was ok; if we want men, young men specifically to stop raping people, not to be rapists we have to give them an accurate definition, picture of what that is in all it’s facets, something we have yet to do, never mind effectively… We don’t have a rape culture in America we have a consent ambiguous culture whereby rape remains a crime on the books that is dutifully enforced, cases prosecuted and rapists put in jail every day; our problem is narrow social definitions of rape that haven’t caught up to real life scenarios, federal definitions and recent court cases…We operate on the ignorance is no excuse understanding to ensure ‘I didn’t know that’ doesn’t become a legal defense for any number of obviously illegal actions, stealing, killing, physical assault, rape where the person is fighting you, screaming, no, begging you to stop. But is it time to reexamine that in the shadow of Zach Anderson, what really happened in Steubenville, details surrounding David Becker producing that impact statement and persecutors went ahead with the rape, not a lesser degree charge, anyway, when adults are as unaware as their teens and teaching them wrongly, when education systems don’t, won’t teach these issues from a legal perspective believing it’s a family thing, the province and purview of parents to teach these values according to their moral compass, religion?… Surely we can and should do better by both women and men.Read More

This Is The Future Of Our Elderly, Disabled And Hearing Impaired To Be Beat Up, Shot At And Killed By Police

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

Public awareness of these frightening, horrific and uncalled for encounters with police by the differently abled, possible dementia cases, developmentally delayed and deaf persons really began on a national scale highlighting what happened to Marlene Pinnock, 51 at the time, allegedly stopped by California highway patrol for walking unsteadily and too close to busy freeway traffic; savage beating by patrol officer caught on passerby cellphone initiated when she purportedly would not comply with instruction to come with him, taken in for her own safety. Short while later released from mandatory psychiatric hospitalization, exhibiting no signs of cognitive impairment, dementia, mental instability, emotional distress, no evidence there had ever been such symptoms; making the officers claim seem bogusly made up, an excuse to beat her for non-compliance. Independent having broken no laws, not being found violating any city, county, municipality ordinances, sans having any outstanding warrants and no real danger to self or others, there was no legal obligation for that compliance. Next galvanized in an Indian grandfather visiting his son thrown to the ground and partially paralyzed owing to he fit descriptions reported to 9-1-1 of a suspicious person and didn’t speak English well…It both follows and is followed by cases like an older homeless man in Florida harassed and assaulted by law enforcement for simply trying to use bus terminal public toilets, including an open handed slap loudly heard on captured cellphone video and literally shoving him into brick pavement, officer getting more belligerent than his ‘loitering perp’ swearing when the latter asked not to be touched, then roughly hauling him away….Nothing seen as more despicable ordinarily than picking on the mentally ill, developmentally delayed; equally understood, challenges faced by officers dealing with mentally ill individuals in potentially dangerous situations. Yet that doesn’t explain how unarmed Ezell Ford, known throughout his neighborhood by everyone to be a bit slow, have mental health issues, ended up shot in the back, if he was such an overwhelming threat to police. Especially when they encountered Ford doing standard neighborhood patrol, deciding he was suspicious, for avoiding them and having his hands in his pockets, hiding behind cars present area wide when scrutinized; cops then chase and grab Ford, him grabbing back, wrestling match ensues, officer statements alleging Ford tried to pull one officer’s gun resulting in both officers firing their guns, one being a back-up weapon. Eye witnesses contradicting polices’ story saying he was shot while laying down, another claiming to have heard an officer shout “shoot him” before Ford was indeed shot 3 times; encompassing noted controversial single shot to his back, found to be at close range evidenced by its distinctive gun muzzle imprint on/in the wound….Unexpected dangers encountered being a cop certainly doesn’t nullify hearing about the unnecessarily lethal outcome of a man, suspected schizophrenic and bipolar, whose mother called police during pre-dawn hours of one morning because his behavior increasingly scared her; when they arrived he began wielding a broom, standard household variety, and confrontation ended with him shot dead. Surpassing what threat Lavall Hall represented waving around a described old red broom with straws against cops carrying guns and perhaps tasers, is police weren’t unfamiliar with Hall, the home or family address; why, Hall was documented mentally ill, had been out of a psychiatric facility barely a week. In fact they had been to her home and escorted him to that mental health facility the week before, him having been properly released from in-patient care which is how he came to be back in his mother’s home. Worse his mother calling them believing, not that her son would be shot, arrested, manhandled, merely taken back to the previous facility, perhaps kept longer this time… Family lawyer’s hope, to see changes regarding how the mentally ill are treated; equally hoping law enforcement there will adopt the FBI’s standard system approaches when confronting, handling emotionally disturbed, mentally ill individuals. Those high on drugs representing a persistent problem for law enforcement, carrying the same unpredictability, penchant for possible public and officer injury, such as the woman who frantically dialed 9-11 driving on a highway in her car because her son was hallucinating, violent, threatening to both self as well as others after taking synthetic marijuana. Strangely 1:48 seconds into physical efforts on the part of officers to control him, restrain him he says ok, I quit; as in I give up, still tased another 4 minutes…. Only after he stopped moving completely did they notice he wasn’t breathing; her son ending up dead at that very scene, simultaneously an officer heard on body cam footage saying dude, I’m fired man, at another point high fiving fellow officers once he’s loaded into an awaiting ambulance. Worrying about your job not the 30 something year old person, who was conscious and physically well when you arrived, if not coherent, who is now not breathing, soon to be pronounced dead; story breaking May 20, 2016. Officers facing no suspensions, hailed to have done the right thing since Chase Sherman, death ruled a homicide by virtue of the number of taser activations and crushing weight compressing his torso, remains an identified perpetrator, not the victim, police officials naming officers and his parents victims of him having taken illegal/unregulated drugs… Overshadowing core issue of drugs doesn’t unravel what police were thinking handling transpired events unfolding in final video here, also surfacing this year, showing Virginia man Linwood Lambert in route to a local hospital for evaluation after responding officers found him in a trashed hotel room hallucinating and acting paranoid… Things go wrong however at the hospital entrance area where he kicks out the police car’s window, begins running to escape police, making it to hospital doors, banging his shoulder into them before being tased repeatedly, falling to the ground, admitting to having done cocaine, asking why they were trying to kill him, complies with instructions to roll over, tells them as he moves he’s trying to roll over, remember he’s handcuffed. But instead of being escorted into the hospital for medical treatment, mental evaluation, given a room/bed in which to come down, sober up (medical version of the city/county drunk tank) they load him back into the car, tase him at least once more, upset he refuses to sit up, despite both hands and feet being bound, in route to the precinct; plan, book him for their car’s vandalism, Lambert having stopped breathing at some point during his ride. Prosecutor calling police actions incompetent and negligent still deciding against filing charges predominately because his cause of death is listed in autopsy documents as acute cocaine intoxication, not noted taser wounds implicating police conduct in his death. Nor did they show intent to commit felony level crimes, misconduct…Chronology of police inexplicable, jaw dropping behavior culminating in footage of a black man lying on pavement, on his back, hands exaggeratedly up in the air announcing he is a behavioral therapist for a group home and the autistic man he is attempting to help, bring back to his care facility is merely holding a toy truck, only to be shot anyway. Even more astounding is why, both why police were called to the scene and why an officer took a shot at the man trying to help his developmentally challenged charge, how doing so got him shot in the hip….Ultimately the officer firing his wounding shot doing so because he thought said autistic man represented a threat to the prostrated man on the ground… shot fired partially due to confusing, conflicting information regarding what was actually happening on the side of that road, in that parking lot; audio revealing one officer thought, the autistic male 23, was loading up his ‘weapon,’ scene chaos and consequences resulting in the scene commander’s expedient firing compounded by fabricating his police report… Mirrored in stories like our next one, police shoot deaf man who leads them on minutes’ long chase to his front door, then as he tries to use ASL (American Sign Language) to communicate is fired upon, killing him; that’s their story and they’re sticking to it in North Carolina where the young father’s family and community want answers. Daniel Harris’ alleged heinous crime, mandating he be shot dead in his own driveway feet from his home, failing to stop, be pulled over for a speeding ticket….Unknown is if officers tried to use a bull horn, turning their lights on and off to get his attention, as opposed to the familiar rotated flashing of those light-bars affixed to hoods on traditional police cars, important considering somewhat common knowledge flashing lights are adapted to phones, doorbells, smoke alarms to alert deaf persons to incoming calls, visitors, and fire providing another way to get his attention. Did the car that pulled over Daniel Harris have a routine bar of lights or was it newer configurations with flashing lights in a different place, similar to where they would be on police motor cycles, built into the headlights of an SUV type vehicle, making them less likely to be seen when you can’t hear. Did they pull up alongside his car, letting him see the lights, uniforms, motion for him to pull over, try to pass him, get in front of him, lights flashing, alerting him maybe cops need to talk to him, are trying to interact with him, before just following him?… By this time you were probably shouting orders for him to put his hands up, get down on the ground, answer your questions; did you not catch minor details e.g. he was dazed, confused, clearly not comprehending what you wanted from him, translating in your mind to he was either drunk or high, which would also explain the speeding. Indicating you should slow down, be patient, cautious yes, but defaulting to your gun, no? Did he at any time point to his ear trying to tell you he either couldn’t hear you, didn’t understand you, perhaps, though he appeared Caucasian, default assumption automatic US citizen, he doesn’t speak English? Educated guess no on every count because it never entered their mind the person driving could be deaf/hearing impaired, that hearing impaired people do drive…Beyond the pallor attached to ideas exposed in the previous paragraph, police now shoot drunk or high people, those they merely suspect of being drunk or high, as they did with Daniel Harris, because they don’t want to deal with them, they are at fault, guilty, underserving of being treated like a human being, let alone a citizen, due to being drunk/high, are worthless drains on society due to their intoxication/addition, forfeit their rights by abusing alcohol, being addicted to drugs. Understanding that’s not how policing should go, officers are not to be judge, jury and executioner, drugs aren’t new, difficulties in handling persons high on an ever changing array of substances isn’t new; what is new is police impatience, defaulting to their guns in handling people obviously impaired, the social narrative resurfacing past ‘the war on drugs’ making that impairment why misdemeanor criminal X is dead during routine interactions with police, graduating to upstanding members of our citizenry…. Nevertheless Chase Sherman and Linwood Lambert are dead because both had a bad drug trip in the presence of law enforcement, also not new occurrences for police to come across; one continued to move trying to escape pain and discomfort from a taser, being cramped in a back floorboard, at one point sobbing. And the other, already observed to be paranoid, got scared, broke a car window and tried to escape into the hospital he was being escorted to, taser deployment making him think you were trying to kill him and he still follows instructions, but gets tasered again because he won’t (can’t) sit up trussed up like Sunday chicken, mainly because you are annoyed, he represents an inconvenience, more paper work you have to file….Drug addicted, influenced and impaired people can be brought in alive, safely to either face trial for use, possession of illegal substances, criminal acts to support a habit, violence, vandalism, property damage committed in an altered state, or better still, receive help; we saw that when the DJ Avicii concert devolved into a bunch of molly hopped up kids too intoxicated to get into the venue who were then taken to Boston hospitals, none died unless it was from chosen drugs, despite one person it took 4 cops to subdue, as little as 2 years ago. Bath salts ‘excited delirium’ cases who were successfully apprehended alive and only suffering effect of the substances ingested do exist; as do K2 users rounded up by the cops, like the 30 odd zombie-like people wondering Brooklyn New York… Pepper spraying an 84 year old grandmother, we can all agree on how over the top that is can’t we; especially when she’s not even the target of police investigation, arrest, when officers kicked in her door, the door to her rightful residence. Try telling that to Oklahoma police, heightened absurdity looking for a man who ran a stop sign, then fled police running into her home. Even if they thought his running a stop sign meant he was a wanted criminal on a much greater crime as opposed to he just didn’t see it, being black knows the reputation of police nationally, locally and doesn’t want to die tonight, even if they though he ran into her home looking to barricade himself, take hostages, which sounds like something out of an action movie, not reality, saw it as a rescue mission for home owner X… Assuming police get it right in the first place which they always don’t; how many times have they gone to the wrong house for a drug raid, bounty hunters looking for a bail jumper accosted the Arizona police chief. In another case police got the wrong house answering a 9-1-1 call about a woman screaming; according to occupants police didn’t announce themselves, shone a light into the couples bedroom window, their dogs were ‘going crazy’, husband grabs gun, goes to open his garage to see what has his dogs upset, thinking potential intruder no doubt, is shot by cops. Or the man who calls 9-1-1 to report an attempted car-jacking, robbery against his wife, grabs his legal pistol to defend her, is shot by police mistaking him for the perp, despite giving a clear description…they didn’t (get it right) in Victoria Texas circa 2014 when an officer pulled over, then tased a 76 year old man for a non-existent expired sticker violation accusing citizen X of getting nasty with him even though citizen X was driving a dealer car exempt from current inspection sticker statutes, realities he tried to point out to the then 23 year old officer fired early 2015, planning appeal. Only to be hired approximately 2 months later by a different police department…Policing doesn’t have to be, shouldn’t be shoot first and ask questions later, nor does it have to be a constant nerve racking set of unknowns once you are on scene…Read More

Back To School Means Back To Shenanigans The Political Correctness Clint Eastwood Should Have Been Worried About

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

Instead it’s the standard go to these days clothes, school dress codes and general polices on everything under the sun putting small area, key city schools on our national radar, garnering national attention for becoming more fascist and Nazi-like every year to some; to older, more traditional minds rolling their eyes bemoaning they had to add yet one more item to a banned clothing list, school administrators had to hammer out yet another policy on issue X because parents can’t employ common sense, if it’s not written down as a firm no, parents think anything goes. School in all facets fast becoming a topic tradition of mine, every graduation season inspires vivid commentary on anything but inspirational speeches to combat further coddling, cloistering of young people about to be smacked by the real world where you don’t get a trophy for everything, you don’t get points for just showing up. Alongside graduation nightmares spawned from clothing that shouldn’t be objectionable suddenly being put on a no, no list, parents showing up in the exact same attire as clever, justifiable revenge; dress code parameters for select, specific occasions that might as well have been written by their parent’s grandmothers mentioning sausage rolls to describe body fat, telling young women to keep the girls covered and you can’t put 10 pounds of mud in a 5 pound sack purportedly trying to speak their language to convey what is appropriate and what’s not. All because they feared stage placement would have people looking up girls’ short skirts, but the self-described ‘impressionable’ girl (18 and now an adult) speaking up is over sensitive and completely unprepared for real life; while her school, who should be leading by example, shows no class and gets away with it. Eagle feathers and other cultural, religious symbols banned from graduation tassels, gowns of individual students, one school barring their valedictorian from speaking due to his goatee facial hair; ironic we want boys to grow up to be men, men to act like men and emasculate them at the same time. Graduation ceremonies marred by racial slurs, overtones, one school outing their valedictorian to his father when he dared include that in the last seconds of his speech he was then banned from giving because it mentions him being gay. Speaking of parents, coveted parent involvement, a school superintendent who threated to have arrested excited parents cheering their child walking across that stage; desired charge: disturbing the peace. Others locked out of an overfilled auditorium due to ticket mix-ups; a 5th grader in a wheelchair forgotten at her elementary school graduation, no handicap accessibility provided, even leaving her name off the list of graduates. Likewise I have joined a chorus of fed up Americans, parents and non-parents equally, tired of schools shaming girls for simply buying their clothes off available racks at Target, Wal-Mart, K-Mart, JC Penny in appropriate size and age groupings, leaving it to parents to draft petitions about where is the fabric in girls’ clothing, clearly showing how much there is to boy’s clothes. Never adding their voices to said petitions just chastising parents for letting their child wear ‘booty’ shorts, more proper name daisy dukes, a bikini top to school (oh the horror in no air conditioning schools where you go outside to adjacent buildings for art, music confronted with hot, humid air)… news watchers remember the Utah school who edited yearbook photos without student/parent consent or notification based on moral compunctions of perv-y, white, religious minded men, blue haired old ladies and clique ridden year book staff despite a parent who took 2 students to orientation/registration and didn’t see any supposed sign announcing no sleeveless tops, visible bra straps, school reserved right to edit inappropriate pictures. Utterly stupid in summer where sun dresses, sleeveless shirts are worn for comfort in hot weather and bra straps, by the laws of physics, can be seen wearing a standard t-shirt, never mind U-neck popular women’s shirt styles (see screen shots) you can’t escape buying today. Reinforcing ideas, boys soon to be men, aren’t to control themselves, women are to cover up; girls, women are sex objects even in middle and high school, don’t want sex, propositions for sex, flirting, comment, cover up… So it’s no surprise dress codes made news again this year at the start of classes or that, as Yahoo’s article below states, dress codes right out of the 1950’s are popular with administrators and terms they use to define appropriate and inappropriate; latest round’s racial targeting found in banned hairstyles, items and ‘fashion trends’ lost on all of no one. Out, corn rolls (again you know persons writing this are out of touch when they don’t know it’s corn ROWS) twists, dreads, Mohawks, fro-hawks, ‘afros’ must be no longer than 2 inches, no jewelry to be worn in your hair, prompting one mother to call out their blatant racism, banning things unequivocally worn by mostly black students, eventually resulting in a slight change of policy eliminating statutes on aforementioned styles. Nor is it close to the first time said policies have come down on racial, ethnic minorities or become absolutely unenforceable….And then there’s the second Yahoo link complete with blow up screen shot below depicting posters informing Illinois middle school students of their dress code; Yahoo author commenting on their 1950’s language and attitudes. Lady-like and school appropriate on 2 headless women wearing nearly the same thing but the ‘revealing’ ‘distracting’ ‘dress code violation’ one was deemed so apparently because said girl chose to wear a see-through shirt over a thicker solid color one revealing nothing, or was it that her shirt wasn’t oversized enough to cover formfitting, ‘revealing’ parts of her leggings; you can’t tell truthfully. Beth Greenfield far from alone in her assessment decrying this throwback flyer and dress code, “Wow, Freeburg’s been invaded by Maoists,” noted one…while another posted the image of a flyer which read, in part, “I am a 15-year-old girl. If you are sexualizing me, YOU are the problem.” 15-year-old spot on, both Greenfield and cited psychologist questioning why; “all the women are drawn “with cleavage,” and “voluptuous,” when the flyer is meant to target middle-schoolers. “Even the way they depict women’s bodies is sexist.” Others penning sarcasm to make their point; “Who in their right mind would aspire to have schools as they were in the 1950’s? When the quality of education/teachers were better….students were held strictly accountable for their behavior……parents cared about how their children performed academically and behaviorally……….and reading, writing, and arithmetic took priority over social indoctrination, and political correctness…..classroom size didn’t matter, and teachers knew how to control their classes.” None of which has anything to do with the topic, over the top dress codes, and what is more 1950’s than parts left in the natural hair issue school’s dress code stipulating no 2 toned hair, males may not dye their hair and it must be no longer than their collar, bangs no lower than top of eyebrows. Butler school in Kentucky, check the calendar it’s 2016…. what we really want to know is where was Clint Eastwood talking about this, talking about educating a child’s mind is more important than what is or isn’t on their body?… where was he calling out old fuddy-duddies about dress codes in public schools; where was he calling out the ridiculousness of polo shirts and leggings on a sweet middle school girl getting them thrown out of class?… Dress codes should be: are they wearing clothes, then they can come to class; students looking to protest should merely come to school in their underwear, socks, shoes, bras for girls alerting these tightwads nationwide their attire will change when dress codes are amended to the above sentence period…. Pledge of allegiance back in the news this year too for variations on redundant, reoccurring ‘reasons’… Pulling us up to current fracas around our pledge, predictable Fox News showcasing a letter from one school sent home with students allowing them to opt out of the pledge and one corresponding parent’s asinine response, ‘this is the dumbest thing I’ve ever read and I’m so ashamed of this;’ panel going on to detail proclaimed ridiculousness of an opt out form despite their own references to a 1943 ruling by the United States Supreme Court saying firstly, the fixed star in our constitutional constellation was you could not force people to confess their faith in orthodoxy, policy, nationalism exc. Translation they possess 1- constitutional, confirmed by Supreme Court, choice to not stand, not recite the pledge, no official, independent rank, high, low can compel them to; further, there must be written notification of the opt out option finally signed by parent or guardian. So represented Florida school, recognizing turmoil about the pledge, probably at stated request of a parent, whole groups of them, followed Supreme Court guidelines in offering an alternative…. No panel members understanding how serious an issue it has become for students, less centered on bullying by their peers manifesting in prolonged, lasting injury and more dangerous bullying by adult, school authority they have little recourse to fight back against. When a teacher can demand you stand during the pledge or be suspended for 2 days, receive 2 more days suspension for every day you don’t stand, chiefly because you defied what she believed to be her authority, weren’t falling in line with whole class, whole school group-think, oblivious to how her actions looked compared to dictator countries Saudi Arabia and North Korea quoting the Secular Talk radio host describing what happened to a high school young man in Texas. When a school nurse can say to an 8th grade student you refused to stand during the pledge of allegiance, I refuse to service you; girl in tears, denied first aide, medication access, whatever she came to school nursing staff for, proceedingly barred from calling her parents before receiving a stern lecture. Which is not only a violation of the conditions of her employment failing to do her job, it constitutes a violation of medical ethics stating you treat the patient in front of you, going against probable portions of the Hippocratic oath. Saga exacerbated and elongated when a guidance counselor stepped in, they no better informed about basic constitutionality saying she didn’t have to say the pledge but should stand in the hallway until its completion. David Packman show clarifying she certainly does not have to/need to stand outside; delving deeper into that 1943 case and its ruling, not only can students not be compelled to say and stand during the pledge, there cannot be repercussions visited upon students who don’t, putting both school officials in the extreme wrong… Identical principles hold true about how we discuss certain issues, how we frame certain conversations by the words we use, actively don’t use, enact change to positively alter society’s use of words counter to social order, function, equality; why we stopped using the N word, negro, adopted native American over Indian. Call someone gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender respectively as opposed to queer, fag, homo, transvestite, cross dresser, butch, carpet muncher, promote majoritively accurate sex education and proper names for body parts; encompassing reproductive organs, sexual activities. Why president Obama sought to remove the word retarded replaced with developmentally delayed from government documents; our evolving vernacular depicting what is socially acceptable to talk about, to say, how you say unpleasant, uncomfortable things, better address sensitive issues as much a part of the American fabric, American tradition as apple pie, baseball. Somewhat perplexing then why Fox News, surprise, surprise seems profoundly bewildered by that evolution reflected in a university’s notice to faculty advising them not to use words like crazy, psycho as it is offensive to people dealing with mental health issues, warnings not to out someone’s transgender identity, abstain from asking said persons about their ‘real name’ or surgical status and support students stated gender identities letting them know they should choose bathrooms corresponding with that identity…Largely gender identity related discussed parameters highlighted by both New Mexico university and Fox News streamed lined with the Supreme Court’s legalizing same sex marriage, countering exposed homophobia behind bathroom bills exploding this summer, that it was an end run around select North Carolina municipalities adding sexual orientation and gender identity to anti- discrimination statutes. Other states following their horrible bathroom bill example, Texas GOP members apoplectic calling it the end of public education when president Obama stepped in saying there will be federal guidelines allowing gender identity bathroom use to students in a place they are mandated to go 5 days a week to receive an education. Their lieutenant governor who can’t handle a tolerant, common sense set of “Transgender Student Guidelines,” fostering a “respectful and trusting” transgender student policy. Except to them, upholders of bathroom freak outs, Fox News, constant disparagers of this generation, our young people it’s representative of the extended coddling college culture of safe spaces, trigger warnings and political correctness gone wild; however, their mocking tone, laughing and segment title to mind your political P&Q’s indicates exactly why such parameters are needed. Forgotten, experts said the same things regarding mental illness in the final Sandy Hook report after Adam Lanza killed 26, most children, openly speaking about stigma surrounding these illnesses, opposed to cancer patients, diabetes sufferers, often preventing people from treatment, medication, causing people to fear both. Society’s use of words like psycho, crazy, cray, cray for persons who may be mentally ill; worse our too casual use of those same words not to indicate medical, mental health diagnoses merely describing those odd, unusual, unique or different, perception mental illness is as contagious as a cold, the flu, when it’s inherently not. Except, beyond safe space, trigger warning, free speech zones that are anything but, being transgender is about waking up one day and deciding your transgender, i.e. female instead of male, so you can use the woman’s bathroom and harass them, hit them up for sex, see partially naked women. Narrowly considered, were their theory correct, transgender males, biologically female could do the same harassing, making feel uncomfortable males hit on, propositioned for sex in Men’s rooms America wide; neither happening to date, if ever. Not about spending a lifetime feeling like you’re in the wrong body, enviously looking at girls wearing dresses, long hair, pretty outfits, feeling in your head, your heart that should be you too, feeling male, wanting to stand up using the bathroom confused as to why you have to sit, why your anatomy doesn’t match your mental image of yourself, terrified about gaining breasts, having a period. Instinctually knowing you don’t have a safe place to go to the bathroom because facilities matching your anatomy feel wrong, yet you’re nervous about those of your gender identity finding out you’re not like they are, harassment you’ve probably been subjected to trying to use either restroom….but telling New Mexico university students gender identity bathroom use is supported on campus is out of line, unnecessary, too much political correctness…. Just like an Arkansas Catholic school for boys, who teaches the importance of ‘soft failures’ posting a sign on their office door as follows: “If you are dropping off your son’s forgotten lunch, books, homework, equipment, etc., please TURN AROUND and exit the building,” the sign reads. “Your son will learn to problem-solve in your absence,” assumes student’s implied poor problem solving is directly resulting from helicopter parenting, helicopter parenting is the sole and singular reason parents bring items to their kids at school; during this day and age going viral. Ignoring, what, are you going to have school security escort out parents deciding it’s their child and they make the decisions not you, resort to calling police to gain compliance from parents with your new policy, how fast you won’t have a school if you go that route; you’ve forgotten parents who bring their child’s hockey, lacrosse, baseball gear to them after school for practice less because of their irresponsibility and more because you know if you do, it will remain in your child’s possession the entire time, less likely to be stolen, expensive equipment won’t be damaged, mandate replacement jostled repeatedly on the school bus (think hockey sticks). It’s what we say about driving all the time, it’s not you, you have to worry about but everyone else on the road; it’s not your kid you don’t trust, just everyone else maybe not raised with the same values you raised your son, especially if you’ve had problems with theft before, broken sports gear before. Their supposed to be cleverly worded sign assumes the child forgot, not you arranged to bring their science volcano, solar system model, history diorama to school so it wouldn’t be damaged on the school bus either; because after taking your hard earned money to buy the supplies, the multiple tries and several kitchen disasters to get the volcano to work properly, you’ll be damned if it gets destroyed before your child gets their hard earned grade… Obviously remarking on an era of ‘bad’ parenting, so called helicopter parents who want to swoop in and fix everything, never let their child fall or fail, protect them from everything brushes off other characteristic ‘bad’ parents, the flake who forgets everything themselves, assumes there’s that word again and what is it they say about making an ass of themselves, the parent showed up to correct, remedy their child’s mistake not their own…. Surely they have poorer students, families even attending probable tuition based catholic schools, parent working multiple jobs, where they told you they needed index cards for their research paper, would be given points for bringing, showing their teacher the index cards and you only had a chance to buy them, get them on your lunch break, just got paid and told your child you would drop them off before X hour class when required. And it’s not a soft failure for a child to flunk a class, the entire grade for the love of a paper left in their room I can bring them, left precisely because of it being such a huge portion of their grade, anxiety about how much is riding on that one thing, their little brother got ahold of their backpack not because it was left somewhere haphazardly but because they had to watch them while I worked late and do their homework at the same time, their sibling is 2 and doesn’t know any better; it too conveniently precludes identifying/helping students, families experiencing problems, needing help or needing you just to leave them alone, stop lumping them in with today’s cultural stereotypes. Backpack with important project left at grandmas because she’s ill, needs care, doesn’t qualify for a nursing home, we don’t want to put her in a nursing home, stumbling out of there at midnight when we got her to bed, us exhausted; Catholic school being an extension of the Catholic Church committed to representing god, helping others exc. that matters more. Precludes help reaching a child with noted memory issues, who may need to be seen by a neurologist, learning specialist even late diagnosed in high school, high school sometimes in smaller, parochial schools, select areas encompassing what would be middle school grades elsewhere; how well did that hard line work with famed Harry Potter character Neville Longbottom, hint it didn’t. Except similar to the discarded dunce caps, we know better than a fictional wizard school stuck in the 1960’s; at least we’re supposed to, capable of acting like it…. Stanford‘s ban on hard liquor follows typical collage policy mixed messages saying publicly they want more responsible adult students acting their ages as opposed to closer to their shoe sizes while simultaneously assuming the same fragility on both sides alleged discussing the New Mexico university parameters on offensive statements, smacking of mounting hypocrisy they want to change campus party culture, limit risky behavior, preludes to binge drinking by refusing to allow hard liquor, refusing to deal with something; knowing roughly 5 years ago college policies managing drunk students was to call their parents to deal with it… it’s better to ban hard alcohol. It’s better to ban hard liquors than it is to institute alcohol education realizing k-12 school ended at 18, drinking age is 21 and they’ll reach that on your campus, teach the difference between beer and Smirnoff Vodka…It’s better to ban hard alcohol than to teach student party goers of both genders, remembering rape isn’t limited to females, heterosexual encounters, party safety lest you be either victim or accused; beyond things like minding your drink for drugs persons might have slipped into it, not succumbing to pressures to drink more than your comfortable with, knowing your own personal alcohol limits, how alcohol affects you. Putting forth drinking till you pass out isn’t normal, acceptable, an ok part of party going, don’t drink until you pass out because it makes you more vulnerable to becoming a victim, makes you unable to remember the next morning what you did the night before, rendering you less able to recount what happened if you are a victim, participate in your own defense if you are the accused…Yet it’s better to ban hard liquor, wrongly presuming college kids don’t get drunk on beer, wine and wine coolers, mixed drinks made from wine or beer and soda, orange juice, playing drinking games, aforementioned beer pong, than it is to have and open honest conversations about what consent actually looks like, its legal definitions rather than the social gray areas these students, all of America have grown up with… Closely connected, having an open honest conversation about what rape really looks like that it’s more than jumping out of an alley and attacking a girl to quote later convicted Steubenville rapist Ma’lik Richmond, who followed up saying I didn’t do that…. Read More

“When I Grew Up, Those Things Weren’t Called Racist”: Clint Eastwood On Why He’s Voting For Donald Trump—A Critique

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

Who could forget last election cycle Clint Eastwood’s, viewed strange, monologue recitation to a chair meant to represent president Obama? Where he, among general observations standing out, mumbled frequently and filled gaps repeating the word uh a lot; impersonated our sitting, then up for reelection (obviously), president interrupting him, telling candidate Romney, our intrepid speaker of the hour both to shut up at several points. Purported the suggestion Mr. Romney go f- himself; imaginings president Obama told Eastwood he too could go f- himself at another juncture, after saying something he wouldn’t like…People back then generating predictable mixed reactions, from viewers, analysts who thought it was republican swill to about time, a larger swath seeing the prolific actor, director, even composer as fragile, senile and out of his depth. Yet, considering Eastwood’s personal politics, shaking off reserved shadows once again sharing his views, it was little surprise he was back this year commenting on, even going so far as to assuage people’s curiosity telling readers he was voting for Donald Trump; however, it was his additional comments on society today that raised eyebrows. In an interview for Esquire he said of Trump and current culture in general, title lines spawning Salon’s piece and subsequently mine: “When I grew up, those things weren’t called racist.” Pontificating everyone was walking on eggshells and how Trump was onto something because people are secretly tried of political correctness, kissing up, calling such actions the kiss-ass generation, elaborating: “we’re really in a pussy generation.” Not included either by Eastwood himself, the Salon or Esquire authors so much as a singular example describing exactly what he alone has been called out for regarding racism, sexism, what he believes are over the top examples of political correctness calling something racist or sexist when it isn’t. We could be talking fan uproar swirling around black Hermione in stage adapted Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which was actually more about author JK Rowling’s character/casting inconsistencies, constant contradicting trickle down information pieces, characters’ background tidbits that don’t match series norms never mind shattering fan generated images accompanying their beloved Potter-verse. Or we could be talking substantive elements, without more information we’ll never know…or doesn’t recognize it, partly due to his age, times he did grow up in, where American once was. Renowned actor breaking down his thoughts on Trump comments voiced disparaging the judge overseeing Trump University lawsuit proceedings, calling attacking said judge’s Mexican heritage and suggesting that renders him unfit to decide outcomes pertaining to his case from a fair, legal-based standpoint merely a stupid thing to say. Directly afterwards highlighting both sides say a lot of them (stupid things); stating everybody, press were making a big hoodoo out of it when they should just f-ing get over it…We can’t just f-ing get over it because, he isn’t you, he isn’t just an actor, a however good one with untold credits to their name and a stellar reputation. He is vying for the highest office in the land, completing job application materials toward hopefully becoming commander in chief demanding a higher standard of conduct, conversation; and he speaks this way about our melting pot country, on countless fundamental topics not simply immigration…. . Unfortunately, we can’t just f-ing get over it; we must repudiate it because, Trump has already gotten as far as he has encountering few stumbling blocks. Because it sounds too much like Phil Robertson, who closed 2013 comparing homosexuality and bestiality, as if they were one in the same, and said he never saw an unhappy black person picking cotton circa the Jim Crow south. His failure to recognize, in his decrying entitlement, welfare, purposefully creating a population of second class citizens, second class human beings with whites only eateries, public restrooms, drinking fountains, public bus seats, schools was, is and always will be wrong. Reiterating, Donald Trump’s comments, satisfying though they may be to his avid listeners, were and always will be wrong as well, regardless who endorses them, supports them, and by extension him, encourages others to do so…. Confronting Eastwood’s asserted assessments, dismal stated descriptions of current American culture, it’s not rampant political correctness gone awry, social sensitivity run amuck hamstringing people so completely they can’t tell the needed, uncomfortable truth to expect people running for public office, particularly our nation’s highest office, reaching bona fide nominee status, certified by voters, to have their facts straight… Nor is it political correctness on steroids, gone horribly wrong, kissing up, walking on eggshells to dare require of political leaders, known names, influential persons understanding their words have increased power, significant weight. To that end, they should be careful with them comprehending; quoting Hillary Clinton, words matter. Following up another Salon piece challenging Republican surrogate Anne Coulter needs a dictionary along with her nominee, exclaiming words mean things. Added to their list ‘sarcasm,’ ‘rape’ and ‘legitimate,’ focusing less on whether Trump confused sarcasm and hyperbole, ‘just kidding,’ ‘obviously I was joking’ and ‘I was being sarcastic’ can’t be excuses for ideas, suggestions he’s put forth publicly talking, however quasi seriously, to America’s citizenry or foreign governments, leaders alike… We are not living in a kiss ass, never mind pussy generation to be taking stock of our wars Afghanistan, Iraq, Libyan intervention and the cost beyond dollars. Thinking maybe we should do something different, maybe if we stopped bombing their country they would stop trying to kill us. Or, on the other hand, seeing on nightly national news evidence supporting chemical weapons attacks on Syrian civilians and we do nothing because it’s too expensive to get involved, we’re weary of the fight? Syrian kids creating their own no-fly zone burning tires while apologizing to environmentalist for global impact saying we abandoned them. Here at home taking stock of our political discourse, social conversation and the divisiveness, unrest it leads to, social injustice it allows to continue festering… Eastwood eerily close to mirroring Trump, synchronized on how they view government function, how to get maximum function out of it; evidenced listening to his monologue 4 years ago Salon link below illustrating quite nicely both are utterly clueless…. Except they correctly explicate what flies over the heads of both Eastwood and Trump, America’s government is not a corporation, a president is not CEO and he can’t wave a magic wand, bombastically declare from a speech podium, floors of congress what he wants done and expect worker bees to scatter in all directions hastily making it happen. That description belongs to a dictatorship al-a Vladimir Putin, Kim Jung Un, government controls in China; although, who exactly did talk about shutting down ‘that internet thing?…. Now this time around Trump his, CEO of a company ideas, is the candidate; Scott Baio and Antonio Sabàto Jr. speaking to their generations, Willie Robertson to his all supporting a guy who doesn’t know how the government works. And, Salon hitting another nail on the head, since people listen to actors, television personalities more than they listen to high school civics, social studies, history, government teachers, we’re poised to elect someone, by choice, who doesn’t know how the government works; scarier than Clint Eastwood’s hair, voice, strange monologue, political persuasions or the reasons for them…
Read More