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Posts Tagged ‘California’

They’re trying to George Floyd me!  –  Keenan Anderson

This week’s video, provided by Stephen Lemons, was made by a hip-hop musician called Afroman to mock the cops who raided his home on bogus pretexts; like the taqueria I featured back in January of ’16, he used surveillance footage in the video to have the last laugh on the thugs who violated his property.  The links above the video were contributed by Mirriam Zary; Franklin Harris and Dan Savage; N. Colby; and Cop Crisis (x4), in that order.

From the Archives

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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A right does not, as a practical matter, exist without any remedy for its enforcement.  –  Justice Elissa Cadish

The End of the Beginning (#1197) 

It’s horrifying that a court order was required to stop the government from trying to punish people for being unable to do the literally impossible:

A rule that Attorney General Merrick Garland issued in 2021…requires people to do things that are plainly impossible.  If they have been convicted of a sex offense, they must register with their state, even when the state neither requires nor allows them to do so.  They also must supply the state with all the information required by federal law, even when the state does not collect that information…someone [unable] to meet those requirements…who travels outside his state can be charged with a federal crime punishable by up to 10 years in prison.  At trial, the defendant has the burden of proving that he was unable to register “as required”…That Kafkaesque situation, a federal judge in California [has] ruled…violates the constitutional right to due process…The case, John Doe v. Department of Justice, illustrates the perverse consequences of the federal government’s attempt to identify and track sex offenders through detailed registration requirements that often conflict with state law…

Panopticon (#1212)

Useful idiots keep providing government with excuses for Orwellian levels of surveillance:

A bill…in the Mississippi Legislature would require public schools and postsecondary institutions to install video surveillance cameras all over their campuses.  The bill would require that the cameras also record audio and that they be installed in classrooms, auditoriums, cafeterias, gyms, hallways, recreational areas, and along each facility’s perimeter.  Further, it would permit [even adult] students’ parents to view live feeds of classroom instruction…the bill’s sponsor…Stacey Hobgood…[belched out the catchphrases] “critical race theory”…and…”accountable”…[to justify creating a stifling] atmosphere of suspicion and distrust [across every school in the state]…

Robocops (#1249)

Since SCOTUS refuses to slay this monster of its own creation, state courts will need to do the job for it:

…the Nevada Supreme Court [has] unanimously ruled that victims of wrongful searches and seizures have the right to sue the responsible government officials.  Just as critically, the court firmly rejected qualified immunity as a potential defense against those lawsuits.  The court’s twin holdings will better ensure that government officials can actually be held accountable for their misconduct…

Thought Control (#1268)

I never would’ve thought my first profession would become as much a target for authoritarians as my second:

Books containing [what politicians vaguely term] “sexually explicit” content…would be banned from North Dakota public libraries under [newly-proposed] legislation…the measure…proposes up to 30 days imprisonment for librarians who refuse to remove the [censored] books…In addition to banning depictions of “sexual identity” and “gender identity,” the measure specifies 10 other things that library books cannot visually depict, including “sexual intercourse,” “sexual preference” and “sexual perversion,” — though it does not define any of those terms.  The proposal does not apply to books that have “serious artistic significance” or “materials used in science courses,” among other exceptions…

Presumably, the “serious artistic significance” would be determined by politicians, which is a bit like asking a panel of tone-deaf 11-year-olds to discuss the relative merits of Bach cantatas.

The Vultures Descend (#1273)

Calling politicians on their hypocrisy is an interesting strategy:

A group of religious leaders who support abortion rights [has] filed a lawsuit…challenging Missouri’s abortion ban, saying [politicians] openly invoked their religious beliefs while drafting the measure and thereby imposed those beliefs on others who don’t share them.  The lawsuit…is…among nearly three dozen post-Roe lawsuits that have been filed against 19 states’ abortion bans…and…was…filed on behalf of the faith leaders by Americans United for Separation of Church & State and the National Women’s Law Center…Lawsuits in several other states take similar approaches.  In Indiana, lawyers for five anonymous women…and…Hoosier Jews for Choice have argued that state’s ban infringes on…Jewish teaching that a fetus becomes a living person at birth and…Jewish law prioritizes the mother’s life and health…In Kentucky, three Jewish women sued, claiming the state’s ban violates their religious rights under the state’s constitution and religious freedom law…

Presumption of Guilt (#1288)

Another step toward total financial surveillance:

…if you’ve sent money across American borders…Big Brother is likely watching.  In what began as an Arizona-led effort before going nationwide, a not-so-independent nonprofit organization has been indiscriminately compiling sensitive financial information and making it available to [cop shops and spook houses] across the country…ACLU…has published more than 200 documents revealing details of the program which fed a vast database of sensitive data…run by an organization called the Transaction Record Analysis Center…The surveillance dates to 2006, when Arizona’s attorney general sought details from Western Union about money transfers to and from the Mexican state of Sonora…[the ensuing] legal battle [was] settled in 2010…and…TRAC was established in 2014 as a nominally independent repository for intercepted financial records…in 2019…DHS took over funding TRAC and…[began] compel[ling] financial disclosures with…a type of subpoena…

Blunt Instrument (#1296)

This will continue for as long as the voters allow it to:

Attorney General Daniel Cameron has announced [a scheme]…to [use “]human trafficking[” as an excuse to carry out violent pogroms] in Kentucky by targeting “illicit massage businesses”…[Cameron plans to threaten] landlords and [spread racist propaganda] to [encourage useful idiots to snitch on migrant-owned] businesses that Cameron [wanks to pedophilic fantasies about]…Cameron is…running for governor this year…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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Silicon Valley lobbyists are…trying to avoid the real debate: whether technology this dangerous should even exist.  –  Fight for the Future

Cooties

Anti-sexworker bigotry harms all women:

An Airbnb host was caught on camera threatening to “smack” a woman in the face and calling her a “prostitute” before telling her no one would believe her if she complained…Yet despite complaints to Airbnb and local police, the man has faced no sanction more than four months on…Airbnb claimed it had suspended the listing, but several others from the same landlord – including one in the same building – are still available to book as of 6 January.  The woman and her cousin…were staying at the flat in Somerset…[when] at the end of August they say they received a phone call from the landlord threatening to physically attack them unless they left…he…the[n]…let himself into the flat…threatened them again, made racist remarks and pinned one of them against the wall…He told them…“You are prostitutes operating from this apartment”…Both women deny…that they were doing sex work on the premises, saying they only had a few friends to visit during their stay…

Fallen Idol (#1052)

Probably not the outcome prosecutors expected:

Former adult film star Ron Jeremy is suffering from “severe dementia” and will be declared incompetent to stand trial on multiple charges of rape later this month…weeks before Jeremy’s trial was slated to begin last year, his defense attorney, Stuart Goldfarb, [report]ed…his client did not recognize him…mental health experts called on by both prosecutors and…defense…have determined…there is no evidence he is faking his symptoms…dementia is a progressive and degenerative illness from which Jeremy is unlikely to recover…the experts reached their conclusion based on a review of medical documents and interviews with Jeremy, his relatives and several…[screw]s who interacted with him while in [jail].  Some of Jeremy’s relatives apparently suspected he suffered from dementia before his 2020 arrest…Jeremy is likely to be placed in a state-run hospital…

Torture Chamber (#1098) 

Perhaps Alabama’s state bird should be the ostrich:

The Alabama Department of C[ramming Human Beings into Filthy Cage]s will no longer track the number of…deaths [in its cages] by month…the department ended [2022]…with 225 deaths…[Chris] England, a member of the prison oversight committee, says now is not the time for less transparency…He wants to…require them to report more often..the Governor’s Office…[claims less frequent reporting is actually “]more accurate[“]…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1135)

Cops really don’t care how many false positives these systems shit out:

Instead of enjoying a late Thanksgiving meal with his mother in Georgia, Randal Reid spent nearly a week in jail in November after he was falsely [accused of grand larceny] by Louisiana [cops on the basis of] facial recognition technology…Reid…[was] misidentified as one of three people who allegedly stole over $10,000 in Chanel and Louis Vuitton purses from a pair of shops via bogus credit card purchases…[and arrested] by…Georgia…[cops during a traffic stop]…“They told me I had a warrant out of Jefferson Parish. I said, ‘What is Jefferson Parish?,’” Reid recalled. “I have never been to Louisiana a day in my life…”

Rooted in Racism (#1151)

In Europe as in the US, the real humanitarians are fighting against racist “anti-trafficking” schemes:

Greek prosecutors…[are putting] humanitarians on trial for search-and-rescue efforts that are protected under international human rights law and Greek law…The [latest] trial is…against…Sarah Mardini…Sean Binder [ans 22 others]…is riddled with procedural flaws that undermine their rights to due process and a fair trial…“Greek authorities…are going after people for saving lives the authorities didn’t want them to save,” said Bill Van Esveld…[of] Human Rights Watch…prosecutors…split the misdemeanor charges from felony charges in the case so the misdemeanors could be tried before expiring under Greece’s five-year statute of limitations…The misdemeanor charges…include espionage and forgery…based on humanitarians’ efforts to identify migrant boats in distress…[while] the…felony case misrepresents…search-and-rescue…operations as human smuggling by a criminal organization…

The Last Shall Be First (#1246) 

The war on trans people has expanded to include drag queens:

Arkansas [politician] Gary Stubblefield…[has] filed a bill…that would classify drag performances as…”adult-oriented business,” along with escort agencies…adult book…or video store[s]… massage establishment[s, etc.  The bill would also restrict all]…adult-oriented business[es from] be[ing] located on public property or anywhere where a minor could [possibly] view [them]…

It would be remiss of me to fail to point out that this wouldn’t be a big deal if sex work weren’t so stigmatized; maybe the queer community should’ve supported sex worker rights as we’ve been urging them to do for the past 20 years.

Panopticon (#1295)

Why bother with license plate readers when fools will pay to be tracked?

A team of security researchers managed to gain “super administrative access” into Reviver, the company behind California’s new digital license plates which launched last [October].  That access allowed them to track the physical GPS location of all Reviver customers and change a section of text at the bottom of the license plate designed for personalized messages to whatever they wished…“An actual attacker could remotely update, track, or delete anyone’s REVIVER plate,” Sam Curry, a bug bounty hunter, wrote…Reviver is the sole provider of these plates, [which] are legal to drive nationwide, and…[cost] between $20 and $25 a month…Users can digitally update the lower section of their license plate to display different messages…[such as] “Go Team!”  An accompanying app can also update a user if their car moves when it is supposed to be parked…the license plate will then display the text “stolen.” Reviver promises “continuous rollout of new features,” including automatic toll payment, parking payment, roadside assistance, and vehicle diagnostics…Reviver [calls this tracking device]…“security” [which] offers “true peace of mind”…

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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When I edit a news story for inclusion in one of my news columns, the first thing I do it to decide which tag it belongs in, then check to see whether there’s an earlier item it follows from (either directly, as a development of an earlier story, or indirectly, by bearing a resemblance to an earlier one).  But every so often a tag becomes too “busy” for me to easily use it in this way; if I have to go through a dozen pages of tagged items before I even reach the beginning of the year, it eats up too much time and may even make it more difficult to find appropriate items (because skimming dozens of similar articles quickly becomes mentally fatiguing).  That’s why I break up such cluttered tags every once in a while so as to make it easier to categorize them in the future.  The “Torture Chamber” tag reached that point sometime last year; I already have two tags devoted to the ongoing human rights debacle which is the US prison & jail system (the other being “The Punitive Mindset“), but I think it’s time for a third.  In the future, items about prison rape will appear in this tag; they were previously linked in several long chains, culminating most recently with Torture Chamber (#1302), (#1301), and (#1299), but there are also quite a few similar items which simply appear in the main “Torture Chamber” tag.  I’ll start the new tag with three items, the first a typical collection of euphemisms from Colorado:

…Jason Hillyer…pleaded guilty to [lesser charges after orally raping a woman confined to a cage by the State]…he…[will be] required to register as a sex offender…Hillyer [committed the rape] in May 2021…[but his victim was afraid to report him before] June 29, 2021…Hillyer [tried to escape surveillance cameras by raping] the victim…in…the bathroom…

The other is from a major hotbed of prison rape, California:

An Orange County…deputy has been charged [with misdemeanors] after…sexually assaulting two [women locked in cages]…he w[as posted to supposedly guard]…Arcadio Rodriguez [moles]ted them on multiple occasions dating back to May 2022 by [groping] them…and [forc]ing them [to watch] videos of himself [masturbating]…

As so often happens, Rodriguez’ picture is being suppressed by “authorities” so he can continue to predate on unsuspecting women.  If that surprises you, you may not have realized how endemic rape by screws and other staff is to prisons:

The state of New Mexico spent at least $860,000 last year to settle…[cases in which screws] rape[d or]…sexual abuse[d]…women…[condemned to its] prisons.  The settlements resolved…seven [cas]es…each [filed by a woman who had been raped by prison staff in the name of “]correction[“]…In addition to the cost of the settlements, New Mexico spent about $2.5 million in recent years defending itself against [suits alleging systemic liability for] the [rape]s…[due] to…a culture in New Mexico prisons that expose[s] women to…sexual abuse…“They have focused their efforts, including remarkably high expenditures on legal fees, on hiding such abuse from the public rather than on investigating and eradicating it,” [said Elizabeth Harrison, an attorney for some of the victims]…

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We need to…finally pursue drug policies that help people instead of incarcerating them.  –  Scott Wiener

Do As I Say, Not As I Do

It’s deeply satisfying to see cops preying upon each other:

…Charlotte [North Carolina cops arrested]…a state trooper [named]…Jeffrey Scott Salyer f[or]…misdemeanor…charges [of hiring a sex worker] and one felony count of [getting a blow job]…on Dec. 23…Salyer resigned that same day…

Follow the Leader

Note that as a cop and screw, Conklin was legally allowed to treat strangers and their kids in exactly this same way:

…a [typical and representative] Arizona [screw and his wife violently]…abus[ed] their 10 children…Kelly [and Melissa] Conklin [were found out] after two of their boys ran away by jumping out of their bedroom window…[and spoke] with…other [cops]…In one instance…the…father…grabbed [a] child…[in a chokehold, then] slammed him to the ground…[and locked] him in handcuffs…he …had [previously] slammed [the same boy’s] face into the gravel, punched him, banged his head, then choked him to the point that he blacked out…The boy also said that he had been beaten…by his father using handcuffs…the [boys’] room locks from the outside, [so] they must use a doorbell to ask to leave the room…they sleep on the floor, because there is no bed for them.  In another instance, [Conklin pulled a knife on] one of the girls…and held her to the wall…after one child [was left with] a black eye [from the abuse]…Conklin…pulled a gun and threatened the other kids…telling them they needed to lie to DCS about [it]…

A Moral Cancer (#1157)

As I’ve been telling you since 2012:

[Shoddy] studies have been linking red meat consumption to health problems like heart disease, stroke, and cancer for years.  But…nearly all the research is observational, unable to tease out causation convincingly.  Most are plagued by confounding variables…[and] are based on self-reported consumption…lastly, the reported effect sizes in these scientific papers are often [too] small…[to be] really worth worrying about…In a new, unprecedented effort, scientists at the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) scrutinized decades of research on red meat…formulating a new rating system to communicate health risks in the process…“We found weak evidence of association between unprocessed red meat consumption and colorectal cancer, breast cancer, type 2 diabetes and ischemic heart disease.  Moreover, we found no evidence of an association between unprocessed red meat and ischemic stroke or hemorrhagic stroke,” they summarized

To Molest and Rape (#1181)

An earlier report identified only 245, until somebody dug deeper:

More than 400 Scottish [cops] have been reported to their bosses [due to] serious misconduct…sexual assault[, or rape]…Police Scotland commissioned an internal review following the rape, kidnap and murder of 33-year-old Sarah Everard in March 2021, by [London cop] Wayne Couzens.  The report showed that Police Scotland had recorded 410 [complaints] over four years…around 118 of the 410 were “assessed [by bureaucrats] as criminal” with the remaining 292 classed as “non-criminal”, which saw 44 [cops] resign or retire “during proceedings” [to escape the consequences of their actions]…

If Men Were Angels (#1251)

“Youth pastors” of a feather flock together:

…David Shagena was a youth leader at The River Church [in Port Huron, Michigan] when [he molested at least four] minors…Shagena’s name was brought up while [cops] were investigating another [typical and representative] youth pastor, William Stefan Wahl…

Torture Chamber (Rapist Roundup)

Your “leaders” refer to rape as “correction”:

A guard at a California…prison [for women] is under investigation after the state [finally decided to listen to] more than 22 [women who reported that]…Gregory Rodriguez [had raped them]…

Winding Down (#1289)

When will the federal government finally read the writing on the wall?

Colorado voters last month approved a groundbreaking ballot initiative that decriminalized five psychedelics derived from fungi or plants: psilocybin, psilocyn (another psychoactive component of “magic mushrooms”), dimethyltryptamine (DMT, the active ingredient in ayahuasca), ibogaine (a psychedelic derived from the root bark of the iboga tree), and mescaline (the active ingredient in peyote).  This month a California legislator introduced a bill, S.B. 58, that emulates Colorado’s new policy, aiming to legalize the possession, preparation, noncommercial transfer, and transportation of those five drugs by adults 21 or older…polling indicates that California voters are receptive to the idea, which builds on a series of reforms in other jurisdictions that suggest psychedelic prohibition could collapse faster than marijuana prohibition did, thanks largely to recent research on the potential benefits of these drugs…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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We have the right to be safe at work just like anybody.  –  Cherida Fraser

To Molest and Rape

This is brazen even by cop standards:

An [Alabama cop] pulled over a woman before kidnapping and [rap]ing her [at gunpoint]…Joshua Davidson…is facing federal charges…since…[the] Jan. 30, 2020…[attack]…prosecutors filed a motion asking the court to detain Davidson…[because] he is “a flight risk and danger to the community”…[having] previously fled…to New Hampshire…in 2020…However, the court denied the prosecution’s motion [because cop]…

Down Under (#876)

In the US, the government would’ve “helped” by prosecuting the victims:

…John-Paul Pohe…filmed 14…sex [workers in session] and went on to face 17 charges of making an intimate visual recording…Pohe was also sentenced for the repeated rape and sexual violation of a young girl…he [also] filmed the [rapes] and kept the footage on his phone…le[ading] to hi[s] being caught…Pohe recorded the [women] – three of wh[om] he recorded twice – without…consent between September 2021 and April this year at four different brothels around the Wellington region…he [would] put his phone in one of his shoes at the end of the bed, to covertly capture the [act].  The discovery of the recordings led to identifying the women, [none] of whom had [any] idea they had been filmed…In each video the[ir]…faces are visible…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1065) 

This is only the beginning:

Kelly Conlon and her daughter [went] to New York City the weekend after Thanksgiving as part of a Girl Scout field trip to Radio City Music Hall to see the Christmas Spectacular show.  But…Conlon was…identified [by a facial recognition system]…security guards approached her right as he got into the lobby…and…kicked her out…she [i]s an attorney…with the New Jersey based law firm, Davis, Saperstein and Solomon, which for years has been involved in personal injury litigation against a restaurant venue now under the umbrella of MSG Entertainment…”This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment on adversaries who would dare sue MSG in their multi-billion dollar network,” said Sam Davis, a partner at the firm…Other firms have sued over being blacklisted.  Conlon said she thought a recent judge’s order in one of those cases made it clear that ticketholders like her “may not be denied entry to any shows”…

Torture Chamber (#1267)

Where “alleged” is used to mean “endemic”:

For five decades, [young people condemned to] Los Angeles County [prison] camps and [cage stacks] have suffered repeated sexual assaults at the hands of [screws and] probation…officers, according to a lawsuit filed by nearly 300 [victims]…The…suit, involving 279 plaintiffs, follows two lawsuits filed earlier this year [by] 70 women…[who] were sexually assaulted [in]…other…facilities. [Screws]…not only [raped and] abused teenage girls, but also…boys…

Stalkers in Blue (Rapist Roundup)

Cops are sexual predators who often specifically target traumatized women:

Rachel Wilks was just 15 when…[she was] assaulted by a family member…[Victoria cop Jayden] Faure [started] grooming…[her via text and Snapchat and] also checking the details of one of her family members on the police [“]LEAP[“] database without any legitimate reason…[at least] 178 [cops] have…misuse[d]…LEAP in the past five years…[only] 65…were disciplined, and…Faure…was…the only o[ne of them] to be convicted…

Do As I Say, Not As I Do (#1292)

It’s always lovely to see them feeding on each other:

A…[typical and representative Florida cop named] Jarrod Eldridge was arrested…[for interacting with] a…coworker…[fantasy role-play]ing as a 14-year-old girl named Jenny…Eldridge…[and the other wanker] exchanged dozens of messages, and Eldridge sent a photo of himself…

To Molest and Rape (#1298)

They’ll use any dodge to avoid saying “cop”, especially when the victims are literal babies:

A [typical and representative] Florida [cop]…received 60 years in prison for sexually abusing children on video.  Scott Matthew Yotka…videotaped himself abusing two children and distributed it over the internet, according to…an…FBI agent…[who was pretending to be a fellow]…molest[er]…The FBI agent asked Yotka how he kept the kids quiet about the abuse, and he responded, “they are young and don’t talk”…Yotka a[lso confessed]…he was an administrator on a social media for people who like “little kid things, incest fetishes and animal things”…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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Your face is like a password you can’t change.  –  Pete Warden

Torture Chamber

Just in case you thought this was restricted to the US:

…a man [died in] a central Japan police station…[after being beaten and then] left naked and bound with his head in a toilet bowl, and a senior official is among those…[recorded on camera] kicking the…[prisoner] as he lay tied up…[cops also] neglected to take necessary medical measures, such as having a doctor examine the man, though he had diabetes and schizophrenia…

Stalkers in Blue

This week’s entry in the “No shit” department:

…Connecticut cop…Joshua Zarbo has been suspended after he…ask[ed] an emergency dispatcher to check a woman’s license plate to obtain her name and personal information in hopes of securing a date…It’s not the first time a police officer in the state [ab]used the system to identify potential [sexual target]s…[typical and representative] Norwalk [cop] Taranjit Singh resigned in 2021 before he could be punished after…four women [reported] he either pulled over and threatened to give them a ticket unless they gave him their cellphone number or obtained their names and addresses through the same database system Zarbo…[ab]used…One…wom[a]n who was twice stopped by Singh…became so fearful of running into him again that she moved out of Norwalk…

Eavesdropping (#1152)

Why does a vacuum cleaner need either a camera or a wifi connection?

In the fall of 2020, gig workers in Venezuela posted a series of images to online forums where they gathered to talk shop.  The photos were mundane, if sometimes intimate, household scenes captured from low angles…In one particularly revealing shot, a young woman in a lavender T-shirt sits on the toilet, her shorts pulled down to mid-thigh.  The images were…taken by…development versions of iRobot’s Roomba J7 series robot vacuum…[and] sent to Scale AI, a startup that contracts workers around the world to label audio, photo, and video data used to train artificial intelligence…iRobot—the world’s largest vendor of robotic vacuums, which Amazon recently acquired for $1.7 billion in a pending deal—confirmed that these images were captured by its Roombas in 2020.  All of them came from “special development robots…that are not and never were present on iRobot consumer products for purchase”…given to “paid collectors and employees” who signed written agreements acknowledging that they were sending data streams, including video, back to the company for training purposes…

Monsters (#1195)

Never forget that this started with censorship of internet porn:

…Putin…[has] signed new legislation that widely bans public expression of [LGBT content]…in [Russia by criminalizing the]…spread [of] “propaganda” about “nontraditional sexual relations” in the media, advertising, movies or…social media…and from any outlet visible to minors.  Distributing to minors any information “that causes children to want to change their sex” was also prohibited…Putin has long cast [the existence of sexual minorities] as a Western intrusion into Russia’s traditional society and values, and proponents of the new law recently likened the[ir crusade]…to Russia’s military actions in Ukraine, which they [depict] as a broader civilization clash between them and the West…

Prudish Pedants (#1223)

Redefining words to mean something more convenient is the oldest trick in the politicians’ playbook:

…Sen. Mike Lee…[has] introduced the Interstate Obscenity Definition Act (IODA), which attempts to edit the legal definition of “obscenity” to allow…for [government] regulation of pornography…The definition of obscenity is based on a stringent, three-part test originating from the 1973 case Miller v. CaliforniaIODA is an attempt to challenge the Miller test’s prominence, creating an alternate definition of obscenity…[which]…would basically render the majority of pornography legally obscene…thus allow[ing] for the criminalization of most internet pornography, by removing the requirement that sexual depictions be “patently offensive,” as well as the requirement that “contemporary community standards” be used to judge material…

Stalkers in Blue (#1282)

Hey, female cops; how’s that collaboration with the police state working out?

A Los Angeles [cop has enjoyed a paid vacation since]…he…shared explicit photographs and videos of his [cop] wife with other [cops]…without her knowledge or consent.  Brady Lamas…[merely] faces…misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct…[for] shar[ing] the images between Dec. 29, 2021, and Jan. 24 in a group chat on Kik…They were discovered by his wife…on Jan. 30…[and he was rewarded] the day after…

Absolute Corruption (#1293)

Expecting moral courage from a politician is like expecting a duckbilled platypus to perform Shakespeare:

In a [wholly predictable] reversal of a [rare moment of moral clarity, Massachusetts governor] Charlie Baker…withdrew his recommendation to pardon Gerald Amirault and Cheryl Amirault LeFave, who were convicted in a [“Satanic Panic” kangaroo court] in…1984…the Amirault family has always maintained their innocence…[and] the testimony of [young] children, which formed the backbone of the case, was coerced by improper interviewing techniques.  But after years of litigation, including two trials and six Supreme Judicial Court rulings, the courts upheld their convictions.  Baker recommended the pardons against the advice of the Advisory Board of Pardons…but the Governor’s Council must confirm any pardon recommendation…and…more than half of the eight councilors expressed grave doubts about [the political popularity of bucking “child sex abuse” hysteria]…Councilor Eileen Duff said she does not believe the Amiraults are eligible for a pardon because they did not [perjure themselves by claiming guilt for “crimes” that never happened]…Amirault will be released from strict parole conditions in another year.  But both LeFave and Amirault will continue to have to register as sex offenders in the absence of a pardon…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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There is no world in which we can say this is a good outcome.
–  DoJ Inspector General

The Last Shall Be First (#904)

How can people fail to grasp that bigotry is not a legal justification for sexual assault?

A woman who grabbed a transgender man’s genitals after demanding to know what sex he was has been convicted of sexual assault.  Karen Waldron…claim[ed] she was just looking out for a friend who had “taken a shine” to the man.  But Waldron…was ordered to pay her victim…£300 in compensation. She had approached him…[and] when…[she] grabbed his genitals and squeezed…he…told her that it was not appropriate.”  Waldron replied “I don’t care”…

To Molest and Rape (#1137)

Canada often rewards its rapist cops with years-long paid vacations:

London [Ontario] police issued a public safety warning…about a former [typical and representative cop] who spent two-thirds of his career [on paid vacation] before resigning last year…Steve Williams…already fac[es] eight charges for [rape and]…sexual assault [and is known for] choking [his victims]…William…[uses at least] a half-dozen [different] aliases t[o find victims] on dating and social media websites…[including] Will Stevenson, Will Stephens, Will S. Will, Where there is a Will there is a way and Will Si…Williams…was first [rewarded with a paid vacation] in November 2017…

Leaving the 20th Century

If this passes, South Africa will become the third country to achieve decriminalization:

South Africa has said it will decriminalise sex work, hoping to tackle high levels of crime against women…“It is hoped that decriminalisation will minimise human rights violations against sex workers,” Justice Minister Ronald Lamola told a press briefing…“It would also mean better access to healthcare and … afford[ing] better protection for sex workers, better working conditions and less discrimination and stigma”…

Torture Chamber (#1219)

The PREA is just feel-good nonsense as long as screws have absolute power over their victims:

The federal Bureau of Prison’s deeply flawed, backlogged system for investigating sexual assault fails to protect female inmates from rape while protecting [rapist] employees…[rapes are so pervasive at] FCI Dublin…in California, [that it’s known as “the rape club”…both the…warden and prison chaplain, among other employees, have been found guilty of [rape][at] FCC Coleman…in Florida…prison leadership created a “sanctuary” for guards who were known sexual predators.  “The sexual abuse at these…prisons is rampant but goes largely unchecked as a result of cultural tolerance, orchestrated cover-ups and organizational reprisals of inmates who dare to complain”…Ostensibly, incarcerated people are protected from sexual assault by not only the Constitution and criminal law, but the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA)…passed in 2003, [which] was supposed to create zero-tolerance policies for sexual abuse…However, in practice, PREA is toothless…Both Dublin and Coleman were found to be in compliance with PREA standards…

Without Let or Hindrance (#1282)

Some people still believe these sociopaths are motivated by a desire to “protect children”:

To varying degrees from state to state, low-income families…particularly Black, Hispanic and Native families…are inordinately subjected to child abuse investigations, says Anna Arons…[director of] the New York University School of Law…Family Defense Clinic… “statistics…estimate that 37 percent of all American children will be subjected to one of these investigations before they turn 18…That is a huge, kind of mind-boggling number that speaks to the scale of the system”…a vast, invasive surveillance apparatus is not necessary to keep children safe[, yet] “That experience is forced on millions of families around the country every year, and fewer than 20 percent of reports end up being substantiated”…In many jurisdictions…the case workers who handle child abuse investigations are trained by police, which shapes the way they approach their work…Many agencies will consider it a safety risk to the child if a parent objects to [being treated like a criminal or subjected to warrantless raids]…

The Cop Myth (#1295)

Cops hiding evidence are described as murderer’s “co-workers”:

Co-workers of Austin Lee Edwards, the Virginia [cop] who [murder]ed the grandparents and mother of a 15-year-old [California] girl he “catfished” online, removed a sheriff’s truck and a black trash bag from Edwards’ property the night before it was officially searched…Two deputies from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office…arrived [just a few hours after]…the [murder]s…[without permission from] Smyth County (Virginia)…[where] the house [is located]…Washington County Sheriff’s Office had [no] warrant for Edwards’ property, [and]…there are few — if any — legitimate reasons for [cops]…from a different county to go onto a property before an official search…

To Molest and Rape (#1296)

For a change, this one really was “former”:

A former [Florida] police chief was arrested…[for] the [aggravated rape] of a minor…William Ray Pruitt…[raped] a 14-year-old girl…while using a[n unidentified] deadly weapon…Pruitt…[w]as Center Hill Police Chief from March 1998 to Sept. 1999…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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To deny [a dying man permission to be with his daughter] is heartless, cruel, and inhumane.  –  Sandy Rozek

Banishment

I’m sure you feel safer now:

The daughter of a bedridden, dying 79-year-old man asked for permission to care for him at home.  This request was denied by the city council of Shenandoah, since the man is on the sex offender registry.  Registrants must live at least 1,000 feet from playgrounds.  The daughter’s home is 894 feet from a toddler park…the Texas bill regarding registries seems to require that towns “establish procedures for a registered sex offender to apply for an exemption from the ordinance,” that option was not provided in Shenandoah.  The chief of police, Troye Dunlap, [said]…”My opinion is no exceptions should be made…If something were to happen, then it falls on me.”  The possibility of something happening seems remote, since the man…is confined to his bed and receiving end-of-life care…

If Men Were Angels

Even the use of the distancing “former” is the same as for rapist cops:

A [typical and representative] Des Moines…youth pastor is charged with giving alcohol to minors [in order to] sexually assault…them.  Caleb Toney [molested at least] five…boys…in [this]…manner…

Only Rights Can Stop the Wrongs (#786)

Indonesian fanatics have been trying to impose this evil scheme for years:

Indonesia has passed a new criminal code that outlaws sex outside of marriage [and] defamation of the president, and expands its laws against blasphemy.  The new laws, which apply to foreigners in the country as well…[will be used] to [target sexual minorities, especially sex workers]…and religious minorities.  Critics also say the new laws could damage Indonesia’s [attempts to pretend to be] a tolerant and secular nation.  In 2019, the Indonesian government tried to pass a similar draft law, but it was shelved by President Joko Widodo after protests from young people [because] the law [blatantly violates] civil liberties…

Torture Chamber (#1202)

Your “leaders” refer to this as “correction”:

An Oklahoma [screw]…was caught using white supremacist gangs to go after Black inmates…Matthew Ware…was sentenced to [a mere] 46 months…in prison.  It’s unclear if the prison will be the one where he worked, however…

To Molest and Rape (#1214)

It’s rare that a rapist cop is stopped after only one victim:

A [typical and representative] Atlanta [cop] who was…a serial rapist…was found guilty…and sentenced to 50 years in prison…Lionel Dely…[raped] a mass[euse after vomiting the word]…investigation [at]…her…[it later came out] that Dely had [raped] three other [women previously]…Though Dely was not charged in those cases, the three victims testified against him at trial.  Police [thought it was very important to tell reporters]…that Dely [did not have permission to rape]…the victim…

Torture Chamber (#1219)

He wasn’t a “former” warden when he raped three women:

A federal jury convicted [boss screw] Ray J. Garcia of [raping]…three female victims who were [condemned to the hell-hole Garcia was supposed to be managing.  As is typical of government press releases, prosecutors and other “officials” stood around congratulating themselves to an almost comical extent, but did point out that]…Garcia…fostered [such] a culture of abuse at FCI Dublin [that it was nicknamed “The Rape Club”]…

The Cop Myth (#1270)

Can you imagine any other gang responsible for this level of mayhem being described as merely “troubled”?

Fewer fatal police shootings are recorded by the federal government every year, despite [a collective pretense of increased] scrutiny of police use of force…Even though federal records indicate that fatal shootings by police have been declining nationwide since 2015, The Washington Post’s Fatal Force database shows the opposite is true: [cops] have [wantonly murdered] more people every year, reaching a record high in 2021 with 1,047 deaths.  The FBI database contains only about one-third of the 7,000 fatal police shootings during this time — down from half when The Post first started tracking…Fatal shootings by [cops] in at least 2,250 [cop shops] are missing from the past seven years of federal records…The excluded data has created a misleading government picture of police use of force, [intentionally] complicating efforts at accountability…

 

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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Since there are trees and you are Black, you could climb onto the trees.  –  “Officer” Yohan C

For Christine McVie’s memorial, I selected this song of all those she penned for Fleetwood Mac because it was for many years used as the band’s final encore; it’s also the song Mick Fleetwood has said he wants played at his funeral.  The links above the video were contributed by Dan Savage, Jesse Walker (x2), Walter Olson, and Cop Crisis (x3), in that order.

From the Archives

I find paywalls distasteful, and so many people find this blog valuable as a resource I just can’t bring myself to install one.  Furthermore, I find ad delivery services (whose content I have no say over) even more distasteful.  But as I’m now semi-retired from sex work, I can’t self-sponsor this blog by myself any longer.  So if you value my writing enough that you would pay to see it if it were paywalled, please consider subscribing; there are four different levels to fit all budgets.  Or if that doesn’t work for you, please consider showing your generosity with a one-time donation; you can Paypal to maggiemcneill@earthlink.net or else email me at the same address to make other arrangements.  Thanks so much!

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