Tag Archives: CNN

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

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

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

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

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

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

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

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

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

Of Course We Should Be Taping Our Kids’ Teachers, Allowing Them To Tape Their Teachers Surreptitiously Or Otherwise

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

How administrators, parents, larger society reacts to any issues found on aforementioned recordings is the true problem; which the author illustrated with his examples, and commenters were 100% correct, there is no expectation of privacy in a public/school classroom for teachers.

How administrators, parents, larger society reacts to any issues found on aforementioned recordings is the true problem; which the author illustrated with his examples, and commenters were 100% correct, there is no expectation of privacy in a public/school classroom for teachers.
How administrators, parents, larger society reacts to any issues found on aforementioned recordings is the true problem; which the author illustrated with his examples, and commenters were 100% correct, there is no expectation of privacy in a public/school classroom for teachers…You solve these developed ‘political sensitivity’ problems by, in example 1, reminding students and parents words like feel in the quote “If you have a history teacher teaching you that Trump is good then I feel really scared for you” indicates an opinion. Reality the student should be old and educated enough to grasp; moreover something teachers are freely allowed to give, particularly to a classmates question. And you are free to disagree with, but since it was neither inflammatory, gratuitously provocative there will be no negative repercussions for the teacher. There was no need for administrator expressed concern regarding what she said, nor Zimmerman’s stated problem with her if she was trying to slant students against president Trump, as her fear reads genuine, alarmed by what her student conveyed another teacher said. Increasing the care with which she said what she did by saying if then paraphrasing what she believed the student to have relayed to her, and we don’t know what the student seeking an answer, not the one recording, asked. Identical to example 3: “the only people who seem to be safe” from Trump are “white Christian males” using the word seems probably backed up with tangible examples based on his comments about Mexicans, Muslims and women; part of the issue is readers lack critical context to hear what was said before or after the quote comments, recordings began or ended, even what class this is for. As there are huge implications of what president Trump is doing for government classes, lessons on the constitution, the factual beating he has given to our founding document, the distain he displays for the rule of law and basics for how our government works, worth discussing in high school classes. Assuming consent is being taught in a majority of health/sex ed. classes, and we hope it is in light of Steubenville, the Stanford rape case, it is things like the infamous Access Hollywood tape and the litany of women to come forward accusing now president Trump of sexual harassment or assault have timely relevance. along with Roger Ailes and entities at Fox News, Harvey Weinstein and allegation of male on male harassment spoken about by Terry Crews, Kevin Sorbo and Anthony Rapp; you have hope of reaching kids, showing them Brock Turner’s face currently provides photo representation of rape in a recent edition criminal justice textbook. Why we should be less upset with example 2’s teacher calling Trump a “rapist and a dictator,” able to defend their argument by allegations and admissions made as well as ways her has run roughshod over the constitution, instead honing in on the criticism of the Make America Great Again hats. Examining closely if it constituted bullying; if it did, firing would be appropriate also if he could not adequately defend the labels he placed on Trump with quoted statements, documented actions as it points to biased ranting out of place in the classroom. Challenging Zimmerman again, readers shouldn’t adopt the perspective of the following quote, “In all of these cases, school officials noted — correctly, of course — that the teachers’ behavior was inappropriate. But nobody pointed out that it was also inappropriate for students to record them;” all of them weren’t inappropriate and the biggest reason the last student was recording their teacher was precisely because their “Los Angeles substitute teacher gleefully telling students that their parents would be deported” predictably to a largely Hispanic, Mexican descent, Latino classroom. Heaven only knows what he said prior the student didn’t get a chance to record; what we did get meeting the definition of inflammatory, gratuitously provocative, with a side of inaccurate owing to he could not possibly know the citizenship/immigration status of the students being a substitute, information none of his business no matter what kind of teacher he is. Amazing is that Zimmerman would want anyone like that substitute associated with the profession he obviously cares so much about. And if psychologists have put their careers on the line under the softly spoken duty to warn before regulatory bodies for the medical practice largely lifted the Goldwater rule prohibiting public comment, long distance clinical analysis of persons they have not seen or treated, to adequately respond to the Trump era and the potential danger our president’s mental status, whatever the cause, presents to the country, goes around the country speaking to groups about just this topic seeking to inform America’s public, 27 phycologists, psychiatrists, similar clinicians weighing in for a book on the subject, so many chiming in there wasn’t room to catalog all the credits, innumerate all insights. Don’t teachers have the same implied, perhaps clearer duty to explicate, explain what’s happening, how we got here, how we move forward, how we protect the fundamental pillars of our democracy from apparent unrelenting assault, provide reassurance and support? Kids 20 years into the 21st century need every tool in their arsenal to combat an increasingly dangerous, in hospitable world; gone are the, fictitious to begin, with Mayberry days where it can be as a commenter on story articulated “America: the land of you can’t do that it makes me uncomfortable.” Read More

No Mr. Rowe It Isn’t Just About Making Work Cool Again

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

It’s about making work functional for both employer and employee, not matter your field, your vocational talent, conventional or unconventional skill, skill set; it’s about us, society deciding what’s more important, our biased, antiquated views on work or a system where everyone who both can and desires to participates…Remembering this is the same Mike Rowe as mentioned in the Fox News piece of the show Dirty Jobs, Somebody’s Gotta Do It, better known these days for adhering to the Bill Maher, Dennis Miller school of thought mocking occupy Wall Street, spouting ‘we can’t all be the one drawing on the cave wall, ‘we need people who do something’ mocking liberal, entertainment, animation and standard art degrees. Mike Rowe who would probably wholeheartedly agree with the final judgement given to a cop suing a local Starbucks for the major burn on his leg costing him time off work, very literal and legitimate pain and suffering; without ever realizing both his purpose in suing wasn’t his too late comprehension coffee is hot, deficient intelligence robbing him of that conclusion earlier and that the whole situation could have been avoided if they switched from a 5 cents to make cup to a 10 cents to make cup, from a 2 cent lid to a 5 cent lid that, side effect fit properly, neither collapsed or boke, to quote Homer Simpson: DOH! Mike Rowe who has an odd bias toward blue collar work, a genuine desire for that kind of work he was steered away from in his youth. Yet an odd bias all the same coloring everything from his view, understanding of why students today shy away from it, to why their parents will do almost anything to steer them away from work they, themselves supported a family on. Sentiments blinding him to those up and coming persons who are proud to be a 3rd, 4th or 5th generation laborer in whatever industry, contributing factors vastly changing the landscape of employment, how manufacturing, pipe fitting, welding, engineering jobs are done, skills mandated to be successful in them. Mike Rowe who tried to explain Trump’s election by contrasting the white working class, rural voters to hedge fund managers making the papers, news for raking in millions while not completely buying his promise to bring back manufacturing jobs as he campaigned; saying to Fox News at the time looking back didn’t make sense to him, his philosophy was looking forward enter: comments on skilled trades and industries so desperate for workers trained individuals can write their own tickets. Mike Rowe who told students last year, in what was supposed to be a commencement speech, for a dubious university, not to follow their passion in seeking employment and that a degree didn’t mean ticket to your dream job instead admonishing students to follow, opportunity predictably in a skilled trade….. So in honor of 2017’s graduation season and the potential we could be wasting here is an in-depth look at Rowe’s concepts on American work, workers and how none of what he says truly works….Oh where to begin deconstructing his ignorance laden misconceptions, ones guesses it’s to say country wide STEM (science technology engineering and math) initiatives routinely overlapping traditional skilled trades aside no, we haven’t removed vocational training from high schools, wholly, completely or nationally; better classifying what schools have done, they have removed it in parts of the country where it is, by and large not used, major metropolitan economies much more dependent on other industries, hardly without individuals in all the trades Rowe mentioned and added ones to boot, just less so, based on need… Proof positive vo-tech is neither dead nor dying my high school alma mater in the Midwest hasn’t scrapped skilled trade prep in the least, the exact opposite, both expanding and adapting it to changing needs and times, creating more advanced block classes, direct lines to internships on school time if/once a student completes prep course X, reaches a certain level; H/VAC and construction equally popular with youth programs and vocational training seekers post college, engaging in retaining, jobs beyond minimum wage. I don’t fit well into my local economy because I’m neither good with these industrial trades or the helping/healthcare professions; leaving me virtually opportunity-less. Same regional area, take the McCaughey septuplets who reached a milestone times 7 graduating high school last graduation season, among them 2 hopeful computer science majors, 2 future teachers to be, one about to be military man, a music major, and 1 of the 2 staying home as opposed to utilizing the offered Hannibal Missouri scholarship studying what, construction; no coincidence either they are from Iowa. Even if Rowe were marginally right it wouldn’t impact where we are at present because, no matter how extensive high school courses, accompanying internships that rarely are long enough to encompass the full scope of jobs or satisfy employer experience requirements, students would still need continued instruction at a vo-tech school teaching advanced skills, certifying abilities, funneling graduates into the workforce; without it there would be left only another facet of employer complaining high school programs that aren’t good enough, expansive enough, teaching the right skills. Further rendering his assertions on high school instruction irrelevant, vo-tech has its place on the post-secondary circuit just like colleges, technical institutions provide classes, certifications and where appropriate ‘degrees’ in the very skilled trade aspects he’s talking about, a tech institution in nearly every state; many also present in local community colleges serving the same purpose singular possible exception, tiny rural areas or urban blight effected schools where there isn’t a shop teacher due to being unable to afford one, yet that has to do with the dollars and cents of simple math not Washington lobbying, the ‘national push to say this is the best path for the most people’ unto success and pulling back the curtain on 4 year college degrees. You also won’t see a trigonometry, advanced science teacher in aforementioned areas for the same lack of both funds and interest, local economies that just don’t support it. Other factors drastically effecting where students nationally, on the bigger macro-scale, get a job, what career they ultimately land in has nothing to do with positions parents, mentors, school officials, demonized by the coinsure of ‘dirty jobs’ repeatedly, guidance counselors think is ‘cool’ or the converse ‘uncool’ translating into totally unacceptable for my kid. Though, regular readers remember this one, multitudes believe parents who’ve ruined their joints by 55 after 30 years of jackhammering, ruined their knees via 30 years navigating an 18 wheeler, 30 years plumbing, crawling through sewer systems, multiple tight spaces for work, chasing various types of farm animals, 30 years on a bobcat giving them sciatica, injured on fishing, deep sea drilling oil rigs (think deep water horizon, oh) forcing them on disability long before the benchmarked 65 while the government keeps hiking up the retirement age incrementally pointing to longer lifespans and medical advancements evolving into a better quality of life they just don’t see, can be forgiven wanting better, different options for their kids, pushing their kids toward anything far from what they do daily, less grueling, catastrophic on the body… Similarly we don’t have crumbling infrastructure systems because there is a massive shortage of people to perform the work regardless what the numbers are telling us, Rowe’s theory kids of the past generation right up to the current one got psyched out said solid jobs due to ‘degree pushers’ calling college higher education and skilled trades, vo-tech, tech institutions alternative education developing a sigma personified in ‘if you couldn’t/can’t hack the other one; preposterous bullshit putting too much weight on what he believes guidance counselors are telling kids, precious little it might be added, and emphasis on parents’ wants kids are wired at that age to ignore anyway. We have a D+ graded infrastructure causing a domino effect of problems whether it’s tragic train derailments, subway/commuter train delays caused by crashes, mechanical failures and old underground structures directly because the federal government won’t release funds for upgrades and replacements, state and local governments don’t have it, won’t use if for that if they have monies to do the slightest incremental repairs, the true story behind our nation of potholes, rotting and collapsing bridges. Or their shady attempts to privatize aforementioned work to corporations/private contractors, think what Backwater did in Iraq when they were supposed to be rebuilding, getting rich while infrastructure doesn’t improve, improve enough to make a difference. Flint’s water crisis, subsequently found pockets indicating high lead levels in city tap/drinking water isn’t for want of pipe fitters, welders, pipe makers, machinists working together to make it happen, instead bluntly about a lack of political will to ensure the safety of our nations drinking water; Flint switched over to the dirtier water source sans chemical treatment neutralizing known lead in the water/pipes to save a few bucks. Older buildings, disproportionately public housing, subsidized section 8 housing are potentially lined with interior/exterior lead paint; one such complex in Mike Pence’s Indiana no less, built on the site of a lead industrial plant in years past sans adequate testing to ensure soil safety; because, we don’t have the political will of elected officials to remove all the lead from existing buildings, care enough about citizens, both current and future workers, to allot enough to public housing proper for adequate lead removal, vouchers for subsidized housing keeping up with rental costs so recipients don’t have to live in a dilapidated house, apartment, a dump that’s potentially toxic. Rather than the easily dismantled Rowe doctrine, diagnosis of what’s wrong with the American employment system current ‘job outlook deficiencies’ are indiscriminately tied to businesses, employers desperate for employees having, readers hearing this before too, done an abysmal job of saying to students these are jobs for which you can get paid money, earn a solid paycheck…
Where we’ve gone horribly wrong, beyond the extraordinarily specific job skill subsets within traditional general skilled trades/engineering, welding, pipe fitting, plumbing, bricklaying, machinists, industrial machine maintenance and repair, exc., workers holding those jobs past or present immediately highlighting don’t translate well into broader umbrella manufacturing or skilled trade jobs, often necessitating retraining when switching jobs, is where we’ve always gone wrong for the last 45 plus years. America’s projected 6 million jobs job gap encompassing every region has far less to do with skills and everything more to do with dissemination of information, hiring practices and bias against the very workers they need; starting with are the jobs listed even available or are they doing as some applicants have speculated listing jobs just to see what skills are out there… Shamefully New York has judges sitting on the bench, presiding over cases who don’t hold law degrees, mystifying is how that’s possible even adjusting perspective to understand small town court rooms, tiny townships; why it’s such a big deal (in light of popular shows like Suits, which at least housed a legal prodigy who could pass the bar sans a degree, expediently test out of courses to obtain his degree if he chose) isn’t limited to the staggering misconduct by judges egregious enough it would mean firing from any job let alone something as important as a judgeship, ultimately expelling them from the bench. It’s their totally lacking comprehension of basic legal principles, lack of jury boxes, an actual judges bench, ‘official proceedings’ held in office buildings, basement rooms, witnesses not sworn to hell the truth, no verbatim recording of testimony. “But serious things happen in these little rooms all over New York State. People have been sent to jail without a guilty plea or a trial, or tossed from their homes without a proper proceeding. In violation of the law, defendants have been refused lawyers, or sentenced to weeks in jail because they cannot pay a fine. Frightened women have been denied protection from abuse. The examination found overwhelming evidence that decade after decade and up to this day, people have often been denied fundamental legal rights. Defendants have been jailed illegally. Others have been subjected to racial and sexual bigotry so explicit it seems to come from some other place and time. People have been denied the right to a trial, an impartial judge and the presumption of innocence…” [Sic] And there are too many lawyers, though perhaps it does explain the bizarre rulings coming out of court rooms today, slaps on the wrist and diversionary programs for rapists, ignorant justifications offered for why what happened wasn’t rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual harassment….Endless résumé advice, a constant revolving door of do’s, don’t, cliché phrases to avoid; alternative providing examples of how you cut costs, improved sales figures exc., shutting out people in janitorial, reception work, anyone whose biggest selling point is they came to work consistently and constantly did their unglamorous job well. What they provided their employer, apart from a consistent worker, was a lack of hassle forced to hire someone else; as opposed to having a uniform résumé format at most varying by field of employment, a uniform transitional format for résumés of persons changing fields so applicants are not being docked points for meaningless aesthetics. Applicant seekers, businesses bemoaning sparse workforces, worker choice too enamored by outcomes produced from amateur psycho analysis of handwriting, what can be read into your walking gate, condition of your teeth, whether or not you wear glasses, wear a watch (it makes you seem punctual, organized caring of others time); swallowing valuable interview time, passing over potentially very talented, capable persons doling out ‘snowflake tests,’ the latest variation on asking silly questions what space alien/animal you are to determine personality, if you fit the work culture rather than investing in job scenario questions, paring answers to experience listed on their résumé, deciding who of those individuals had the best answers and hiring them. Flagrant abuse and misuse of Skype, Facetime, video chat services interviews as a window into an applicant’s home, routinely their bedroom, to make otherwise unattainable value judgments about crooked pictures, Victoria Secret posters, book titles on a bookshelf; just the latest in trends of finding increasingly petty reasons not to hire a worker. Taking a big gamble they even have access to fundamental hardware moving the interviewing technique outside tech, computer jobs; plunging neck in neck with using Equifax and Spokeo to ascertain credit scores, personal data employers shouldn’t have access to specifically age and relationship status, 2 things barred from job applications for a reason. Worse, Equifax lost a multi mullion dollar lawsuit for failure to correct serious errors on a woman’s credit report despite her repeated attempts and filling out reams of paperwork; an estimated 1-4 reports containing significant errors incorrect birth dates, social security numbers, and that was roughly 5 years ago. Where are you placing your want-ad, your job opening, older workers probably aren’t perusing the internet for employment, if they are they certainly aren’t using professional job boards, exclusive websites; skilled tradesmen not looking to uproot, relocate across the country, to a different city, town, state are most likely networking where they live, connecting with friends, family, work associates to land a gig, visiting the local employment agency. If you don’t then have a sign plumbers needed, ads in your city, town paper, postings at the employment agency, don’t use word of mouth, you’re missing out; i.e. in Larimer county Colorado….Next let’s stop beating around the bush about employers who have summarily done away with the internship, apprenticeship across all fields in the employment sector, even to a significant extent skilled trades; skilled trades producing students who will still need real working world experience and time to hone their skills to equal persons on the job 5, 15, 25 years. Hardly to be dismissed, employers unduly let off the hook, worth chastising them about also is their complete abdication of any job training at all, rudimentary basics they are many times legally mandated by law to give regardless experience level, past job experience they not only don’t, but blatantly refuse; their habit of hiring individuals off the street with no prior experience and no training fully expecting the employee learn by osmosis, observation, as a last resort ask similarly poorly trained co-workers how to do task X. Example, young man looking for a job, applies to an auto parts distributer is hired his responsibility, going around to local auto-parts stores ensuing they have the inventory they need; except he had no clue how to do that, differentiate parts, facts known to the employer upon hire, based on application materials, résumé finally fessing up to his boss how lost he was….Alluded to in the introduction was the interesting why everything had gone to a class, everything has gone to a class, certification, certificate or degree, less because the colligate money making machine and Washington lobby made it so and more due to employers expecting their applicants to come in with those skills, experience under their belt, believing it the responsibility of the higher educational institution excluding any corresponding internship cooperation to reach that goal; and, when that drastically turned out not to be the case, they couldn’t get all they wanted including the preverbal kitchen sink, then came the job listings demanding both degree and experience creating much of the catch 22 new grads find themselves in, but all we need to do is make work, as defined by Rowe, cool again…Paralleling the above asking when was the last time businesses wanting employees went into an educational institution and spoke, when was the last time companies like GE in Erie Pennsylvania took the highest aptitude workers/job applicants, (because the middle age worker has a point, you want the degrees but you have provided no means for experienced workers, been doing it for years, to get newer skills) and sent them to school, crafted programs only teaching the math and science, engineering skills for the job, the field not a 4 year degree, not a years long certification process? Contrast their mindset to the CEO paying for all his full time workers’ children to attend college irregardless where they choose to go to school, what the intend to major in because he knows what it’s like to watch a parent get by on minimum wage, knows what it’s like for higher education to be a dream and actively seeks to pay it forward. Contrast the G.E. standard approach to employers who have taken it upon themselves creating their own training programs, work in tandem with local community colleges, take the step to pay for a young workers’ college education that will advance them in the job they already had during high school, they are met with overwhelming success and experience, no shortage of workers, interested candidates, applicants; chief reasons Jamie Dimon’s aerospace high school and IBM’s fast track high school melding diplomas and associates degrees plus an internship at IBM remains so successful is directly owing to they are teaching up to the minute skills coupled with hands on internships. Conversely, universities, tech and trade schools can’t keep current if employers insist on keeping silent, being absent from the conversation, talks to aforementioned institutions, simultaneously complaining to any news outlet, labor study complier they can’t find workers; have eliminated and continue rebuffing the internship, apprenticeship, don’t know what to do with them when they have them, regularly giving them coffee fetching, filing busy work unrelated to the job, (to the point their next employer is saying I need to know if you got coffee or did actual work) shunting them away from true experience…. Adjacently America, society, teachers, guidance counselors, mentors, job coaches must strive to reorient existing, isolated up and coming workers expectations, employer expectations round 2; many of the people in ‘Trumpland’ rustbelt states, former, current manufacturing hubs housing those who excel at construction, bricklaying, drywall, plumbing, pipefitting, welding, machinist, mechanic exc., several kinds of factory work are quite frankly living in a 1980’s or earlier time warp. Why did the younger of 2 men featured in the Carrier update announcing jobs still going overseas, down to Mexico despite president Trump’s previous efforts think he would be able to retire at Carrier at his age of no more than 40; why does the 38 year old profiled in the obstacles to the American dream piece think at 38, taking a factory job just out of high school, he would retire in that field, be guaranteed a job all his working life? Mindsets dying latest, at the turn of the 21st century starting with the year 2000; trends any employment forecaster or person with eyes could conclude in the early, mid 90’s. 3rd case in point, you live in Williamson West Virginia and all you’ve wanted to be all your short life is a coal miner, yes there’s an argument for exposing people to job opportunities, young people to career fields especially in a place caught in an obvious time capsule, looking for all the world like the set of Steven Spielberg’s Goonies; immediate question jumping out is where are/were the city managers, city, state chambers of commerce bringing new business prospects in and why does it seem they’ve been asleep since the Carter administration, arguably when local establishments got a new coat of paint? Then again strapping 20-year-old, you own at TV don’t you, heard about Trump from TV didn’t you, don’t you ever see something on TV you’d like to be, aspire to besides coal miner, what’s holding you in Williamson, talked about elsewhere Erie, PA; why are you so insularly and like president Trump uncurious about your world, the rest of your country, what might be out there for you should you leave your dilapidated, one horse, run down home town? Why the clinging to a ‘home town’ that is literally dying, why does it escape the understanding of you and the newly minted college graduate in Erie that that dying is normal, the ebb and flow of time since the goal rush days, mining boom towns leaving the moment mineral access dried up, oil wells ran dry; your best course of action up against those odds take any, every opportunity to move, leave, go where things are that fit your credentials, what you want to do, talents you have. Continuing, for the former of the 2 young men, if you can sit through a class on underground drilling, you can sit through a class on installing solar panels to rooves, clean energy installations of any kind, an industry showing exponential growth, sit in a construction, welding, pipefitting, journeyman class. Ideal people to be inspired by fictional characters Augie March and Tom Joad read about in school, apparently not, ideal people to believe that is a path to a better life, larger achievement, greater stability apparently don’t, yet millennials are pegged as the go nowhere generation…On the flipside employers act put out they can’t find workers, claimed to have raised wages, offered amenities toward enticing workers to jobs, but never offered to cover even a fraction of relocation expenses for a single worker and their family content to wring their hands, whine to print publications, news outlets about ‘the skills gap;’ extraordinarily self-defeating when the problem in Larimer county Colorado (video 1 after paragraph 2) was they added almost twice as many jobs over 5 years than they did citizens, how does that even happen?… Combine that with entire growing segments of the population who are excluded from workforce participation through one hurdle or another; here’s a hint it’s not the typical republican, Robert A. Hall, Mike Rowe, Dennis Miller, Bill Maher, screaming, complaining and telling bad, supposed to be timely jokes, regaling us via relentless mantras depicting people too stupid or lazy to earn a paycheck. Top on the list women, we already know it isn’t safe, forget fulfilling to show up for work, whether you work somewhere like Fox News as a television anchor doing so much as your local news, in a place however reminiscent of Hollywood, that needs to retain its professionalism, sell jewelry at Kay, women sales staple Avon, try to sell your own created brand of product X, work in the tech industry unless you enjoy being inundated with work while on negotiated, unpaid maternity leave, relish being the odd duck in the office, only one of your gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation; here everyone thought it was because math was just too hard for their ‘fairer sex,’ programing/coding too complicated…. Proven you can’t be an athlete and a woman either, just ask the U.S. gymnasts systematically sexually abused as teenagers by the team doctor; don’t go into management women, don’t try to compete there guaranteed you won’t get it and be utterly demeaned in the meantime, passed over hardly knowing why. Jill Abramson was unceremoniously fired from her prominent newspaper job then replaced by a man known for punching holes in walls either because she couldn’t save an already sinking ship or for speaking out about the pay gap she discovered. When you can be fired in some states if you don’t wear makeup, deign to use birth control, veteran senator Elizabeth Warren is being told to sit down and senator Kamala Harris basically told to shut up; congress has new ‘dress codes’ for reporters standing outside the Whitehouse in dangerous heat told to don sleeves, too well do we remember the national outcry over former first lady Michelle Obama’s bare arms. Now imagine being a girl, woman holding an interest in the very do something, dirty jobs Mr. Rowe champions, does he honestly think that will go over well in the overwhelmingly male dominated fields he put on his show, housing the most vacant jobs, noting it took a viral twitter hashtag to break through stereotypes of who looks like an engineer, a line of pink building toys to let girls freely explore building things, chronicling news stories about air marshals gone wild resulting in the suicide of one lesbian marshal thanks in part to a perverted Jeopardy game played around the office demeaning women, minorities and the LGBT community, the sexual assault of another female marshal. Sexual misconduct, harassment, assault and full-blown rape in the military is as par for the course as boot camp; worse, women serving in military ranks who report sexual assault are pegged as having a personality disorder and told to get over it or discharged entirely, lock step in line with a society where Jennifer Lawrence’s self-deprecation regarding her pay inequality and lagging negotiation skills was readily accepted, women continually berated for lacking negotiation skills, so called refusal to negotiate. Compartmentalizing the undeniable questions about can a woman handle large hammers, industrial sized equipment, construction equipment, unscrew corroded pipes, handle large animals, manage duties on a fishing ships, comments on their lesser upper body strength, based on medical research or no, can they tolerate grueling hours, the sexist nature those comments are bound to take, fact employers, no matter how desperate, wouldn’t dream of hiring a woman to do these jobs. Who would tell their daughters to go into such a field understanding how easily they could be sexually harassed, assaulted on a construction jobsite, inside someone’s home as a plumber doubted for her abilities, the reverse of perception on male handymen, predators posing as utility company workers, using that job to assault people when; 2 New York City female bus drivers performing an unsung, do something job allege they were systematically sexually harassed at work to the point one contemplated suicide to end pressure of keeping quiet, who felt broken like never before post the experience of having her face licked trying to pick up her daily schedule…Similarly, persons overcoming disabilities, mental health challenges, developmental delay are a whole different section of slammed doors in their faces; because despite the Americans with disabilities act, businesses determined to help these individuals secure a job and a means to support themselves, at least in part, there aren’t nearly enough of them to accommodate need….Returning exclusively to the able bodied or mostly able bodied, further if you want to start, have a full discussion about both moving forward, defacto meaning embracing innovation as well as filling jobs that consistently go wanting for workers, there has to be a serious conversation surrounding restoring the dignity of work; not just how we talk about blue collar work and workers, not just convincing employers to fill said positions they must raise wages, moving it away from implied hazard pay for extremely strenuous work, being covered in various levels of filth for the should be middle class life they can’t achieve. Rowe is right it is completely up to us to define what a good job is, what productive, solid work looks like, fine; however, a good job should be one where employers are treated with decency beyond how their bosses and co-workers speak to them, tones on the jobsite…Why, not because of ever talked about American laziness, lacking stamina, perceived softness; but, knowledge people allowed to do physical labor safely, correctly can work longer, be on the same job along enough to pass on their expertise to younger workers, cost less to programs like Medicare, Medicaid, such people need less disability payouts, none at all. No young person 16 to 30 is going to entertain the idea of engaging in do something, manual labor work despite their inclinations, known skills with their hands until you do, not because they are allergic to work, fear getting their hands dirty, possess an aversion to sweat, but because they know the end result of decimated physical ability and live in an increasingly health conscious society. Instead of the most basic safeguards complying with laws we already have, workers are daily subjected to dangerous conditions, temperamental, poorly working machines, outdated, overly repaired rather than replaced tools or equipment partially explaining the man in the extended Erie, PA profile haughtily asking how much the jobs scooped up be immigrants pay, causing viewers to bristle until he mentioned unsafe working conditions and hazardous tools; Deepwater horizon oil rig explosions, mining operations leading to the death of workers, factory fires all things we know/knew about. Proving there is nothing perfect or reasonable about asking someone to do a job, in order to earn a living that will eventually leave them with a serious musculoskeletal deformity in their golden years no matter how good a shape they keep themselves in throughout their life, there is nothing to be celebrated, around a kitchen table or anywhere else, about promoting work, doing work that multiplies exponentially the chances of respiratory disease, cancer and other serious maladies, literally cripple young, youthful persons in a few short years because it satisfies anyone’s definition of what a good job, hard work, solid work looks like, what it is to be a man’s man or any of that other macho, rah, rah crap that went out with the 1950’s for good reason, and no, Tucker Carlson there is nothing dignified, that confers dignity about forever being sweaty, filthy, dirt covered, unable to get car grease, industrial lubricants or the remanence of manipulating plumbing all day, farm excrement, meat packing scraps out from under your nails, out of your work clothing, chancing experiencing heat exhaustion, heat stroke, hypothermia or frost bite, constant exposure to temperature extremes weakening the immune system and leading to colds, bronchitis, pneumonia, sick days, extra sick days taken, blindness or asthma just to go to work….As mentioned at the start of the paragraph embracing technology, as opposed to shunning college degrees, comprehending computer programing, coding, robotics, engineering and all its facets will solve problems of both now and in the future preserving the health of current and coming generations, believe it or not; calculating how many practical applications of science, engineering, technology and math bent towards solving an existing conundrum, bettering someone’s life with cheaper adaptive technology, prosthetic limbs or related materials began as high school, 4 year university class projects in STEM, advanced STEM subjects, science fair contest entries, robotics competitions. Whether you’re talking about the incubator designed specifically to aid low birthweight babies in developing counties miles from a hospital, the boy who invented a lighter more portable and effective sandbag, the older young man who created a better detector for pancreatic cancer, the disease taking famed lecturer Randy Pausch, the middle school class who used 3D printing to create a prosthetic limb for a farmer following in the footsteps of college students who did the same for people in war torn Africa; another created a custom wheelchair for a little girl who couldn’t easily fit into standard models, never mind her parents couldn’t afford it, weighted backpacks helping calm kids with autism. Too it’s acknowledging the primary reason we don’t already possess machines, innovations, apparatuses to help workers work safer, to make work less strenuous and grueling toward lessening joint degradation, eventual replacement, chronic pain is precisely due to there also always having been an immigrant, slave, negro, disadvantaged African American or desperately poor white person, prior convict, societies ‘undesirables’ willing to do such back breaking work, viewed lowly, humble work for meager money. However, just because we always previously could hire such workers and cheap too, doesn’t mean we should have in the past, should continue doing so now; said advancements positively putting less stress on human bodies not because we’re wusses, have gone soft, are ‘all obese and so out of shape we can’t work,’ and countering instead because repetitive stress injuries, tendonitis, arthritis and joint damage were always bad, costly and most importantly unnecessary in the modern era…Using either robots to fight fires or soundwaves to douse flames only makes sense considering both monetary and human cost should a firefighter be injured, burned unto death, inability to continue working as a fire fighter or working at all; mitigating, minimizing property damage, fire spread, possibility for greater loss of life if spread is an added happy side effect. Imagine for the remainder of coals usage as fuel using robots to enter mines, do work, collect natural materials saving future generations’ black lung; it can happen if we let it. Hopefully machines changing pipes in tight places, navigating dirt and debris in some of the places Rowe has routinely filmed himself removing the daily contortions required for the love of saving the human musculoskeletal structure of every U.S. inhabitant; migrating the machines globally for everyone’s benefit. Science, technology applied to everyday problems is what’s going to eliminate flushable wipes clogging of sewer pipes, the toilet paper clogging pipes in Mexico and more importantly eliminating the filth in the poor man’s job who’s raking that ewww away from a water filtration screen; either by creating a better degradable wipe, a natural non-toxic substance to be put in pipes removing clog build up and/or replacing the man with a robot absent a sense of smell….
Finally, people who have a passion for the work they do, do their best work period end of sentence; people who have a passion for their work 9 times out of 10 have an inherent talent for the largest part of their job description, making them better than the best educated, trained person you cultivate for years because they possess a natural instinct for what they are doing. Perhaps a more accurate, inspiring way to phrase, rephrase what Rowe was getting at is to replace the word passion with natural talent, aptitude, what you do best and how you can turn that into a job or career, avenue to make you money. Watch video on the high school who made the students it’s IT department; sure under Rowe’s doctrine he’d much rather our featured young man walk his original course going into diesel mechanics, because we desperately need those, but he found something that ignites his world, makes it worth living in and isn’t that the point too, where all the dirty job workers would like to get to? Nor is it that there aren’t people who want these so called and aptly named dirty jobs, forgetting momentarily all the pervious aspects discussed about job knowledge, post high school training while costing less than college is still unaffordable to persons possessing no way to pay for post-secondary schooling at all; people who desire vacant jobs driven by dollar signs, the last remaining employee market where they can drive their own destiny, may not have the mathematical skill, but more importantly the mechanical aptitude to quickly distinguish tools i.e. types of wrenches, screwdrivers or drills, may not be physically capable of doing the job owing less to obesity and poor physical shape instead manual dexterity, individuals who are clumsy, klutzy, don’t work well with their hands, excel and wood working or even understanding welding, small gas engines, have no facility with computer operation, never mind coding or programing, clearly their brains aren’t wired to excel in this area. Exactly who you don’t want working in a STEM or dirty job; if someone is more likely to show up at a Mike Rowe apparently coined phrase ‘shovel ready’ job promptly bonking themselves in the head with said shovel, stabbing their co-worker in the foot with it, they need to be somewhere else and that’s ok. We want them somewhere else, if we’re smart, we’ll help them find that somewhere else making room for people with the aptitude, inherent skill; the challenge is getting them out and the right people in.

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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

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

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