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Posts Tagged ‘Minnesota’

Are you a girl?…Because you fucking fight like a girl.  –  Matt King

Since I’m not a fan of rap, I decided to commemorate the passing of Coolio with this parody of his most famous release.  He also infamously tried to sue Weird Al over it, but later displayed wisdom and maturity by publicly admitting that he had been wrong and apologizing to Weird Al.  Coincidentally, the other celebrity death listed here was a close friend of Weird Al’s.  The links above the video were provided by Popehat; Emma Evans; Isley and Franklin HarrisCop Crisis; Popehat again; Stephen Lemons; and Cop Crisis again, 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 very much!

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Schools are using [cops]…to…do their dirty work.  –  Jackie Ross

License to Rape (#932)

Cops raping whores is so ubiquitous, others pose as cops to facilitate rape:

…hundreds of…men claiming to be [Irish cops have been raping,] abusing and harassing sex workers…The [attacks] range from demanding [sex]…worker[s submit to rape], to violent abuse, including [forcible] rape, choking, and assault…at least two [incidents involved] men…produc[ing] handcuffs and attempt[ing] to [abduct] the women…one such [rapist]…targets foreign sex workers due to their particular vulnerability and demands [they submit to rape or else face]…deportation…

Moloch (#1048) 

Pigs in schools are a menace which should be abolished:

…Across Illinois, police are ticketing thousands of students a year for…adolescent behavior once handled only by the principal’s office…Ticketing students violates…an Illinois law that prohibits schools from fining students as a form of discipline.  Instead of issuing fines directly, school officials [snitch]…to police, who then ticket them for municipal ordinance violations…Another state law prohibits schools from notifying police when students are truant…but…dozens of school districts routinely [violate]…this law…At the assembly-line hearings where…these cases are handled, students have no right to legal representation and little chance to defend themselves against charges that can have long-term consequences…fines can be hundreds of dollars, presenting an impossible burden for some families, and administrative or court fees of up to $150 are often tacked on.  Unpaid fines are sometimes sent to collections or deducted from parents’ tax refunds.  And, unlike records from juvenile court, these cases can’t be expunged under state law…

Disaster (#1072)

The FOSTA challenge is proceeding yet again:

Two human rights organizations, a digital library, a sex worker activist, and a certified massage therapist [have] appealed a ruling that denied  their constitutional challenge to FOSTA…an overbroad and censorious internet law that harms sex workers.  The plaintiffs, Woodhull Freedom Foundation, Human Rights Watch, The Internet Archive, Alex Andrews, and Eric Koszyk, have been challenging the law since it was enacted in 2018.  The district court…dismissed the case last month, [pretend]ing that FOSTA did not violate the First Amendment…

To Molest and Rape (#1130)

Calling himself a monster is the first honest thing he’s said since he was caught:

A [typical and representative] Boston [cop who was president of the pig union] is now pleading guilty to…child rape…Patrick Rose Sr…pleaded guilty to 33 charges in connection with the rape and abuse of at least six children…as far back as the 1990s and as recently as four years ago…Rose [was first caught] in 1995, but he was allowed to keep his badge for another 20 years…

Guinea Pigs (#1191)

This has been going on for years, and platforms do nothing to stop it:

[Pigs] of the Minneapolis [cop shop]…engaged in [unauthorized] surveillance of local Black leaders and organizations…as just one [of] a litany of other abuses that included “[murder]ing community members of color and Indigenous community members” at a highly disproportionate rate, according to a [new] report…[showing] a pattern…of racial discrimination…extending over a period of at least 10 years…includ[ing] the “covert use” of fake social media accounts to spy on local Black residents who were not suspects in any criminal probes…The groups included the local chapters of the NAACP and Urban League.  [Lying pigs] used fake accounts to gain access to posts they could not otherwise read…commented on posts, sent private messages, and contributed to discussions…[while pretending to be] like-minded individuals and claim[ing], for example, that they met the targeted person at a prior demonstration or protest…

Opting Out (#1199) 

The worse the idea, the more eager politicians are to ape it:

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe…issued a resolution…urging European nations to mandate online [censorship software] for “pornographic materials” on all devices, to be “systematically activated in public spaces, such as schools, libraries and youth clubs”…The PACE p[olitic]ians [also bloviated about… “addiction to pornography and…unhealthy sex.”  There is no scientific evidence for a clinical “addiction to pornography” and n[one of] the p[olitic]ians offered any definitions of what they consider “unhealthy sex” or…explained how these mandatory [censorship algorithms] would be coded and by whom…The…resolution includes a number of…suspiciously-sourced statements that seem to echo anti-porn propaganda by both religious activists and sex-worker-exclusionary feminists…

To Molest and Rape (#1220)

Another specimen of the garbage the state pays to violate kids:

A [cop paid by the state to stalk, harass, and spy on students] was arrested by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation for child molestation in Carrollton…Jerric Gilbert…[molested] an 11-year-old girl…

The TV station which produced this story felt compelled to defend a child molester by digging up someone to say what a great guy he is and how he never molested her son.

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Where is the baby pit bull?  –  cop, during no-knock raid

I’m really annoyed that The Steven Banks Show, an extremely funny comedy produced by my home-town PBS station, WYES, has never been released on DVD.  To give you a taste, here’s the show’s soundtrack album (which I own on CD, naturally).  The links above the video were provided by Mike Siegel, Franklin Harris, Cop Crisis, Jesse Walker, Cop Crisis again, and Amy Alkon, in that order.

From the Archives

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It’s as if Disney were entering Notre-Dame.  –  Maurice Culot

Every once in a while social media produces something really exceptional; this was called to my attention by Mike Siegel, who also contributed “improved” and “baby”.  The other links above the video were provided by Dan Savage, Scott Greenfield, Kevin Wilson, and Radley Balko, in that order.

From the Archives

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The myth of sex addiction is a pathological view of male sexuality, sexual diversity, non-monogamy, and non-normative sexual desire.  –  David Ley

Here We Go Again 

Prohibitionism never, ever changes:

…in the early 20th century…prostitution became seen [by busybodies] as a social evil that concerned a wide range of [people who were completely univolved in it]…evangelical Christians, feminists, business leaders and medical experts demanded immediate and unrelenting repression of [sex work]…self-styled “abolitionists” in both the United States and the United Kingdom gained public support for their efforts by [spreading propaganda about a fantasized epidemic] of “white slavery”…the legislation they produced was antithetical to prostitutes’ interests…policies that sanctioned state control and punishment of prostitutes flourished…[but] rather than eliminating prostitution, the anti-prostitution movement simply changed the nature of the sex trade…and…subjected [all women] to increased state control.  During World War I, the “American Plan” authorized the arrest, inspection and detention of women suspected of carrying venereal disease…surveillance of women in the name of public health increasingly committed the U.S. to a “neo-regulationist” prostitution policy that controlled women’s bodies…

The article has some interesting information, but if you notice the faint reek of Swedish thinking (as if some cretin had stuffed used toilet paper down between the sofa cushions), it’s not your imagination.

Traffic Jam (#619)

You may remember that I called this as bullshit ten years ago:

St. Paul [Minnesota sow] Heather Weyker…[fabricated] an interstate sex trafficking ring run by Somali refugees…result[ing] in 30 indictments, 9 trials, and 0 convictions.  Hamdi Mohamud, then a 16-year-old refugee from Somalia, found herself caught up in that scheme in 2011, when one of Weyker’s witnesses, Muna Abdulkadir, tried to attack her and her friends at knifepoint.  Mohamud called the police…Weyker…arrested Mohamud and her friends for allegedly tampering with a federal witness, and Mohamud subsequently spent two years in jail before the trumped-up charges were dismissed…but…since [Weyker framed all those victims]…as part of a federal task force, she is entitled to absolute immunity and cannot be sued…Mohamud hopes to change that…by asking the Supreme Court to hear her case, which she made official last week…

No Difference (#888) 

American puritanism is a pox on the entire world:

One of the world’s most restrictive “anti-pornography” laws, the indecency statute passed by Uganda in 2014, has been struck by the nation’s Constitutional Court as unconstitutional…the law was “quashed” following pressure from women’s rights groups, with a panel of five judges unanimously ruling “that sections of the law that defined pornographic offenses, including a ban on ‘indecent’ clothing, were unconstitutional”…the…law…was [typically]…used for morality policing and led to…song lyrics and music videos…be[ing] labeled pornographic…[with] the…artists criminally liable…the [censorship law and an anti-LGBT law were passed due to lobbying by]…American evangelicals…[especially] the…International House of Prayer…the parent ministry of Exodus Cry

Neither Addiction Nor Epidemic (#1033) 

It’s always a pleasure to watch experts trash harmful sex myths:

…it’s important to recognize that the concept of sex addiction was introduced…in the 1980’s during the HIV/AIDS crisis.  As…a society, we were terrified of sexual excess, of non-monogamy, of casual sex, of sex outside relationships, and of gay male sex…It is not by accident…that gay men get diagnosed as sex addicts…around three times more than anybody else.  The second very large group…are people struggling with a moral conflict over their sexual desires…[due to growing] up in religious household or communities where they were taught that any sex other than hetero sex within marriage is a sin…the third group…[consists of] men who get in trouble for sexual behavior…who self-identify as sex addicts to avoid responsibility for those behaviors…going to sex workers is…literally a diagnostic criterion in the sex addiction screening test that many therapists use…sex workers are [therefore] framed as analogous to either a drug or a drug dealer…self-destructive things that help people destroy their lives…

Welcome to the Future (#1052)

Prohibition by human idiots is bad enough:

Over the past two decades, the US…has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into developing and maintaining state-level prescription drug databases…In the past few years…a single [fascist collusion] called Appriss has…merg[ed] the[se] into…a…national prescription drug registry…[managed by] algorithms to generate “data insights” and…[accessing] huge reservoirs of data outside state drug registries to arrive at them.  NarxCare…is Appriss’…“analytics tool”…that purports to instantly and automatically identify a patient’s risk of misusing opioids…the software mines state registries for [so-called] red flags indicating that she has engaged in “drug shopping” behavior…the[n]…assigns each patient a unique, comprehensive Overdose Risk Score…Appriss is adamant that a NarxCare score is not meant to supplant a doctor’s diagnosis.  But physicians ignore these numbers at their peril.  Nearly every state now uses Appriss software…and most legally require physicians and pharmacists to consult them…on penalty of losing their license.  In some states, p[igs]…can also [root in this database]…without a warrant…to prosecute both doctors and patients…

The Pro-Rape Coalition (#1096)

Sex workers and allies speak out about Nick Kristof’s latest anti-sex crusade:

Kristof’s “The Children of Pornhub” — a…[propaganda screed] dropped as 2020 was winding to a close…triggered the removal of millions of videos from Pornhub and led to both Mastercard and Visa cutting ties with the adult industry giant…protecting…l[egal minor]s [ca]n’t  [be accomplished with] sweeping legislation and widespread content moderation, which endanger the safety and income of sex workers [and the civil liberties of everyone]…“Treating child sexual abuse as a moral failing is the wrong approach and is harmful to sex workers,” [says] Jeremy Malcolm, director of the child protection organization Prostasia Foundation…“dealing with [child sexual abuse] through a harm reduction lens is far more effective and less likely to [be used to cloak]…intended [attacks] on marginalized communities”…

Legal Is as Legal Does (#1151) 

It looks like Victoria is about to become the world’s fourth jurisdiction to achieve decriminalization:

Victoria will join a growing number of states by decriminalising sex work…the…government announced it would begin a two-year legislative overhaul, starting with the removal of offences and criminal penalties for consensual sex work, with the aim of having it passed by Parliament by the end of the year…sex work will be regulated through existing government agencies and…laws will be updated to support a decriminalised system…Victoria will join New Zealand, the Northern Territory and NSW…

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I feel like I’ll never get out of here.  –  17-year-old inmate of a US “shelter”

The End of the Beginning (#772) 

Perhaps we’re at last about to witness the beginning of the end of these evil laws:

On June 8, the American Law Institute…voted to approve the most recent draft [of its model penal code], which…state[s that] sex offender registries…should be limited to law enforcement access for law enforcement purposes, as is the case in virtually every other country besides the US…people [condemned to these] regist[ries]…can be searched on public online databases, along with a slew of other data including their home addresses…this…enables…exileextortion and vigilante violence a[gainst]…such [people] and…their family members.  T[he] Supreme Court…still [pretends] that public registries of this kind are not “punishment,” though lower courts are growing more skeptical…[indeed,] public registration is…such a thoroughly soul-crushing punishment that it disincentivizes following the law for people subject to it

Surplus Women (#931)

A classic case of NHI:

Since 2001, at least 55 women (and counting) have lost their lives at the hands of the Chicago Strangler, whom the police have denied even exists.  The…serial killer’s methods are brutal, cold, and repetitive, practically a calling card at this point…[yet] the police swear they see no connections [because]…the…victims are, without exception, women, killed on Chicago’s South and West sides…Three-quarters…are Black…47 had some history of sex work…the women were killed by strangulation, either by bare hands or with a ligature like a belt, rope, or the women’s bras.  Some were suffocated via plastic bags placed over their heads.  Most were at least partially undressed, if not completely naked, and many of them showed some signs of sexual assault.  The bodies were found in semi-public places, like back alleys, empty lots, snowbanks, or dumpsters — places where someone should have seen them placed and set on fire.  The Chicago Strangler barely attempts to hide his crimes, and that’s if he’s not outright gloating about them, knowing that the police do not take him seriously…

The Crumbling Dam (#1105)

The feds will try to stop this just as they did in Philadelphia:

[Rhode Island] Gov. Daniel McKee…signed into law a proposal to…establish…safe injection sites…The goal is to provide clean needles to curtail the spread of infectious diseases; test drugs; and provide a bridge to medical and substance abuse treatment.  The [new] law…requires the approval of a center by the city or town council in which it is proposed…[and] the funding would all come from foundations and private donors…Federal prosecutors successfully blocked a…safe…[injection site] in Philadelphia…[and] President Biden…is [a hypocrite and unrepentant drug warrior]…

Winding Down (#1121)

Much more of this worldwide, please:

The Mexican Supreme Court first ruled that marijuana prohibition was unconstitutional in 2015.  That decision became binding nationwide three years later, when the court gave the Mexican Congress 90 days to pass a legalization bill.  [Politicians ignor]ed that deadline and several others, and [finally] the court lost patience, ordering the federal government to issue permits that will allow cannabis consumers to possess and grow marijuana at home.  Similar permits have been available since 2015, but until now they were limited to [individuals] who had filed lawsuits and obtained injunctions.  Commercial cultivation and distribution remain illegal…

Guinea Pigs (#1136) 

Apparently, Psychology Today doesn’t bother to check whether its writers actually know anything about the subjects they write about:

Felipe Aros-Vera is an…assistant professor of industrial engineering at Ohio University…[who programmed] one of the world’s more powerful computers, the IBM Watson [with a lot of prohibitionist sexual fantasies about “]human trafficking[” in order to act out a puerile cops and robbers fantasy of]…caus[ing] the greatest damage to a human trafficking network.  He focuses on [the myth that sex workers are] victims…[who are] groom[ed]…acquir[ed]…[and] transport[ed by “pimps”] from place to place…and that…demand for…sex…is [not natural to humans, but artificially created by]…internet…advertising…

Despite the author’s panting nonsense, this is actually an example of the principle of garbage in, garbage out, and therefore unlikely to be as dangerous as systems such as Palantir and Memex.

Torture Chamber (#1141)

A prison doesn’t magically become a “shelter” just because those confined there are minors:

[Legal minors] inside the Biden administration’s largest [concentration camp] for unaccompanied migrant youth were subjected to filthy living conditions and medical neglect under the watch of unqualified government contractors…said…Laurie Elkin and Justin Mulaire, two federal employees who were detailed to the Fort Bliss [concentration camp]…near El Paso, Texas…they were repeatedly ignored or discouraged by [bureaucrats]…when they tried to report the…unsanitary conditions and poor care…Elkin recounts three instances where she discovered girls in distress, only to encounter resistance from contractors wh[o apparently think]…medical care [consists of shouting “Stop faking!” at sick prisoners]…contractors used loudspeakers to play music at intolerable volumes throughout the day, starting in the morning…at around 6 a.m. or 7 a.m…One contractor…used a bullhorn to wake [inmates] up in the morning…

Simple rule of thumb for reporters: if those confined there can’t come and go as they please, it isn’t a “shelter”, “center”, or “school”; it is a prison.

To Molest and Rape (#1142)

Another specimen of the garbage the state pays to violate kids:

A [typical and representative cop paid by the state to stalk, harass, and spy on students], Neil Dolan, a[greed to a]…plea…[bargain in which he confessed] to two…sexual [assault]…charge[s in order to escape more serious rape charges]…The hearing was held…via Zoom with Dolan appearing from [a cage where] he’s [locked for] two years for another…[plea-bargained-down] sexual [assault charge]…[the prosecutor thought it was very important] that Dolan wore [his magic clown suit while being a dangerous pervert]…Dolan groomed students at Bagley High School [by literally offering them candy] and…sending [his targets dick pics since at least]…2011 or 2012…he…also [hunted]…victims…as a…Boy Scout camp program director…

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To what extent the prosecution will twist the law to its ends remains to be seen.  –  Stephen Lemons

Whore Madonnas (#808)

More from Juniper Fitzgerald:

…my children’s book, How Mamas Love Their Babies…is the only children’s book– to my knowledge– to include a sex-working mother: “Some mamas dance all night long in special shoes. It’s hard work!”…You would never suspect that such a modest inclusion of sex workers in a picture book about how parents provide for their children by any means necessary would provoke the bowels of the internet so profoundly.  Claims that I—along with Hilary Clinton, mind you—am sex-trafficking my own child grace my timeline even three years after publication.  My inbox still tells me that I am a literal witch and devil worshipper—whatever the fuck that means.  Or, my favorite, that I am “communist whore filth.”  It’s easy to dismiss Q-anon and #PizzaGate believers as a handful of rabid, marginal cultists.  But these…exist on the same continuum with wine-sipping white ladies who think sex workers are a threat to their children…

The Punitive Mindset (#880) 

“Drugs” are a popular pretext for petty vindictiveness in US prisons:

Billy Steffey…is a former federal inmate…still trying to fight the BOP for stripping him of good behavior credits and throwing him in solitary confinement for five months based on…an unverified [drug] test with a well-established track record of leading to wrongful arrests…[such] tests…[a]re not admissible…in court; and the manufacturers explicitly warn that all tests should be sent to crime labs to be verified…Yet the federal Bureau of Prisons relies solely on such tests to pu[nish prisoners]…and strip them of…rights…with virtually no avenue for recourse…The issues with these tests have been known for decades and are easily verifiable…In December [2017] a [screw] opened a package…legal…papers [that he claimed] felt “unusually thick” and gritty and looked discolored…many…prisons have…bann[ed] physical mail and used book donations…[under the pretext that] they…are [used]…to…s[muggle] drugs…[screws] tested the…papers…[and claimed they saw evidence of] amphetamines…[then] linked the package to Steffey after [rooting in his] email…threw him in…solitary…for five months…and…stripped him of 41 days of “good time” credit…

A Moral Cancer (#1000)

Because obviously prohibition doesn’t ruin enough lives yet:

[Oregon governor] Kate Brown…[approved] a bill banning the online sale of nicotine-containing vaping products to state residents…despite convincing evidence that limiting access to e-cigarettes drives users, especially young people, to traditional cigarettes that pose greater health risks…as politicians eternally pretend to not understand, banning things doesn’t mean that people give up on them.  Instead, it drives them to legal substitutes that may pose different or greater risks, or else to black market suppliers who offer products of unknown quality and safety.  [When] San Francisco banned the sale of flavored tobacco products in 2018…92 percent of [users] continued their habits after the ban…[but] high school students’ odds of smoking conventional cigarettes doubled…The conclusion that prodding youthful users from vaping to cigarettes is a bad idea is not [even] controversial…

Micromanagement (#1012)

This would be better news if judges didn’t simply rubber-stamp cops’ warrant requests:

Maryland and Montana have become the first states to pass laws…requir[ing] police to have court authorization…[and] probable cause…[Maryland further requires that] the crime being probed must be a murder, a rape, a felony sexual offense, or a “criminal act involving circumstances presenting a substantial and ongoing threat to public safety or national security”…AncestryDNA and 23andMe both prohibit such investigations using an ordinary user profile.  But other companies, such as FamilyTreeDNA and GEDMatch…allow police to [root in] their databases…[at will]…

Devil’s Advocate (#1114) 

Your periodic reminder that a child-shaped toaster is still a toaster:

[Creepy weirdos] assigned to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s [Sympathetic Magic] Unit have arrested and charged a…man accused of possessing child[-shaped toasters]…in October 2020, [intrusive and unconstitutional surveillance revealed] that William Crowder…ordered a child[-shaped toaster] to be shipped to his home.  TBI agents subsequently [roo]ted…at Crowder’s residence and found at least six [toasters (it’s difficult to be sure because Tennessee cops can’t count that high)], several of them dressed in children’s clothing…Crowder [was charged] with six counts of [making toast in a way that upsets redneck busybodies]…

Stalkers in Blue (#1138)

Another cop demonstrating exactly what he is:

Minnesota State [pig] Albert Kuehne sat in his [pigmobile] in March 2020 and [rooted] through a phone belonging to a 25-year-old woman he’d just…[accused] of drunken driving…he [had no permission to even touch the phone, but] clicked through her photos [anyway].  Hours later, the woman’s boyfriend noticed something alarming on her MacBook, which was synced to her phone:  Outgoing text…messages to an unknown phone number with nude and partly clothed pictures of the woman attached.  When they called that unfamiliar number, Kuehne answered…Kuehne…[has finally] admitted that he sent himself three explicit photos of the woman, and then deleted the outgoing messages on the woman’s phone to try to cover his tracks.  Kuehne pleaded guilty…to a misdemeanor…

Dangerous Speech (#1138)

US “authorities” keep pretending “because sex” is an excuse for any tyranny:

During a June 7 status conference…in the Lacey/Larkin case, Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin Rapp…objected to the phrase “escort services” in a survey question about whether jurors had “strong feelings” concerning…the “legal adult entertainment industry”…Rapp [claimed] that the phrase is “a misnomer” for “prostitution services…[that] suggests that escort services [are] somewhat legal”…Whitney Bernstein, an attorney for Jim Larkin, [correctly responded] that escort services are…legal…in…many…states…[Judge] Brnovich…overruled Rapp, allowing the question to remain…

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All I could do was bend over and duck.  –  Lecresha Murray

Here’s another 1960s novelty song recorded by the stars of a hit TV show, in this case Patrick Macnee and Honor Blackman of The Avengers.  They’re not really in character, though of course Blackman’s character Cathy Gale was definitely an afficionado of “kinky boots”.  The links above the video were provided by Jesse Walker, Tim Cushing, Brooke Magnanti, Thaddeus Russell, Emma Evans, Cop Crisis, and Mike Siegel, in that order.

From the Archives

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The legislation…grossly limits…sex workers from taking steps to protect their health and safety.  –  Justice Phillip Sutherland

Imaginary Evils (#929)

Is there anything the government won’t label “sex trafficking”?

In 2004 [Nicole] Daedone founded a group called OneTaste, disseminating…the practice of what she called orgasmic meditation, or OM.  At its peak, OneTaste was reported to be making $12 million a year; it had centres in nine cities, including New York, San Francisco and London, and was endorsed by no less a personage than…Gwyneth [“jade vagina egg”] Paltrow.  But the organisation has now shut down following accusations by former members of the group, with the FBI reportedly investigating allegations of sex-trafficking, prostitution and violation of labour laws…

Property of the State (#989) 

Pregnant women are uniquely vulnerable to state coercion:

…each new wave of illegal drug panic and crackdowns…has spurred new excuses for monitoring pregnant women, overriding their consent, and applying strict laws against them.  In Alabama, hundreds of pregnant women have been prosecuted for positive drug tests…”A woman can be charged with chemical endangerment from the earliest weeks of pregnancy“…and…face up to 10 years of prison time [if her baby is born perfectly healthy]…and up to 20 years if the child shows signs of exposure.  High courts in…Alabama, Oklahoma, and South Carolina…have affirmed that it’s OK to use general child abuse statutes in the criminal prosecution of pregnant women who test positive for any illegal drug…in…South Carolina…[hospital] staff called the cops on a woman whose child tested positive for [metabolites of THC]…In Louisiana…a woman was charged with child desertion and second-degree cruelty, punishable by up to 40 years imprisonment, for smoking pot while breastfeeding.  In…Minnesota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin…drug use during pregnancy can lead to involuntary civil commitment.  At least 23 states [pretend] any drug use during pregnancy is…child abuse…Even in states without this explicit policy, a single positive test can trigger…investigation by child protective services

Sex Rays (#1059)

Another sleaze turns old news into an ad for his business catering to superstitious snobs with more money than cognitive development:

Jeffrey Epstein’s Palm Beach mansion is being demolished in the hopes of [ritually] cleansing the area of [evil spirits].  The waterfront property was purchased…for…$US18 million [by real estate]…developer Todd Michael Glaser…the gated estate is modest for the area, which is largely made up of extravagant holiday homes…occupied only during the summer months, leaving the area eerily quiet during the off-season…

I Spy (#1067)

At least a few politicians’ moral compasses aren’t entirely defective:

A bipartisan group of [politicians] has introduced a bill to stop federal law enforcement from sidestepping citizens’ privacy rights by secretly purchasing our personal data from third-party brokers.  In 2018 the Supreme Court ruled in Carpenter v. United States that the FBI violated a suspect’s Fourth Amendment rights by tracking his cellphone without getting a warrant first…[so] federal agencies began…just buy[ing] the information from brokers…And so a group…including Sens. Rand Paul…Ron Wyden…Patrick Leahy…and Mike Lee…has introduced…a…bill [which would]…require fed[s]…to…get a court order [to buy the data] just as they have to do now if they want to force a phone service provider to cough up your information.  It prohibits the use of this data as evidence [unless the spooks simply lie and pretend they obtained the data using a legal method, in a dodge called “parallel construction”]…

Morality Lessons (#1112) 

This unconstitutional bill failed in over a dozen states before passing in Utah:

The Alabama House Judiciary Committee held a hearing…on a “copycat bill” of the legislation…passed in Utah [which] aim[s] to force phone and computer manufacturers to install default “porn filters” on devices sold in Alabama.  The bill…[i]s part of a current effort…by [pro-censorship group]…Morality in Media…and other religiously motivated…organizations — to pass state-by-state laws making this requirement…

Winding Down (#1118)

Washington state politicians demonstrate their hypocrisy:

…in February the Washington State Supreme Court…struck down the state’s felony drug possession law…decriminaliz[ing] drugs statewide and suddenly render[ing] tens of thousands of prisoners eligible for reduced sentences.  The Legislature could have seen this ruling…as an opportunity [to end the drug war in]…Washington…But…the provincial, fearful mommies and daddies who run Olympia have made…plans to restart the war on mostly Black drug users.  The only question is how much destruction they want to cause, and for how long…

Whither Canada? (#1126)

Slowly chipping away at a terrible law:

An Ontario Superior Court judge has declared unconstitutional legal provisions that ban sex workers from being able to work safely, including by being able to advertise…hire security, work together and communicate with clients…Justice Phillip Sutherland ruled…that the law breaches the right of sex workers to life, liberty and security of the person…Jenn Clamen, national co-ordinator for the [Canadian Alliance for Sex Work Law Reform]…stressed [that] the ruling is just a partial victory [as] it does not address…provisions…banning the purchase of sex and communication for th[at] purpose…this is the second time in Ontario that a judge has partially struck down the [prohibitionist law which imposed] the Nordic model [on Canada.  Crown attorneys whined]…that [it]…would be more difficult [to destroy people’s lives for consensual adult sex]…

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If the First Amendment will protect a scumbag like me, then it will protect all of you.  Because I’m the worst.  –  Larry Flynt

R.I.P. Larry Flynt

The last of the “Big Three” of men’s magazine publishing, Larry Flynt, died of heart failure a week ago today at the age of 78 (Hugh Hefner preceded him in 2017 and Bob Guccione in 2010).  Flynt’s magazine Hustler was (intentionally) the raunchiest of the three, and its brand had the greatest commercial viability in the long run due to its expansion into home video and strip clubs.  As I’ve repeatedly pointed out, infringements of civil liberties always start with those nobody wants to defend, and Flynt intentionally set himself up as a target for censorship attempts by prominently featuring the nasty, the grotesque, and the deliberately offensive, especially in Hustler‘s cartoons and cover art.  He was prosecuted for obscenity several times, always prevailing in the end, and battled fundamentalist blowhard Jerry Falwell all the way to the Supreme Court in the ’80s; after 1978 he was paralyzed below the waist due to being shot by a racist who objected to Hustler featuring interracial couples.  Despite attacks from dried-up “feminists” like Gloria Steinem and prissy editorialization from bluenosed “journalists”, the fact is Flynt was a bona fide free speech hero, and not merely in his own mind as the WaPo’s pearl-clutching headline pretends.

Droit du Seigneur 

What did this guy think he was, a cop?

The Ohio Supreme Court suspended the law license of a [lawyer who]…was charged with human trafficking involving six women — most, former clients…Michael Mearan…say[s]…the allegations [a]re [a frame-up by cops using] testimony from [prisoners] who [were given] favorable treatment for co[lluding with cops]…Mearan…was [also a politician who sat on the]…Portsmouth…city council…he [is alleged to have] targeted women who were poor, addicted to drugs and facing criminal charges to take part in [what cops label] a prostitution ring during a 15-year-period beginning in 2003…

Thought Control

US institutions often need to be reminded that they do not own people:

…Kimberly Diei, a pharmacy graduate student [was expelled from] the University of Tennessee…[after] her posts on Twitter and Instagram were…[the subject of a poison pen accusation by] an anonymous [busybody]…She was given two days to appeal, and she scrambled to find a lawyer.  With the threat of a lawsuit looming, the dean of the college reversed the decision to expel her.  But the experience was so painful that…Diei filed a federal lawsuit with the help of a pro bono lawyer, arguing that the public university had violated her constitutional right of free expression “for no legitimate pedagogical reason”…universities are…fumbling to [extend campus censorship] policies…into the world of social media…And young people are fighting back, contending that their off-campus speech is no business of their school…the Supreme Court agreed in January to hear the case of a high school cheerleader in Pennsylvania who was removed from the junior varsity squad after she posted vulgar complaints about not making the varsity team…

Acting and Activism (#556)

Predictable ugliness from the “celebrity” prohibitionist trash who once called stripping a “gateway to slavery”:

Red Table Talk…[hosted by noted bigot] Jada Pinkett Smith, her daughter Willow…and mother…“Gammy”…tout[s] itself as a space where three generations of women can discuss various topics in a judgment-free environment…But…Ava Louise Lockner…[revealed that] the “open and honest” policy the show pushes is not what she experienced when she was set to be featured in an episode about being a sugar baby in the fall of 2019…she [was verbally] attacked during the several hours she spent at the Smiths’…home, [with] Pinkett Smith…rolling her eyes and Gammy…slut-shaming her throughout filming.  When the segment failed to air, Ava Louise spent weeks chasing up once-eager producers.  Finally, she…received a…call from a high-level executive on the show…[who] told her…they would not be airing her episode because…the hosts found her “gross and disgusting…they don’t want to be associated with sex work”…

Banishment (#870) 

This Orwellian tyranny is part of how governments are getting around the push to reduce prison populations:

Twenty states, the District of Columbia, and the federal government have laws that authorize civil commitment of [human beings arbitrarily branded] sex offenders…after serving their prison terms…The state punishes people…based on the [claim] that they could and should have controlled themselves.  But when it is time for them to be released after completing the punishment prescribed by law, the state says that was not actually true; now they must be locked up precisely because they can’t control themselves.  If the government decided to retroactively increase an offender’s penalty, it would be clearly unconstitutional…The trick is to cast continued confinement as treatment rather than punishment.  But…in Minnesota, only 13 [prisoners] have been unconditionally released since the program was established in 1994; more than six times as many have died in custody…the Supreme Court [says that’s okey-dokey]…Joe Morrissey…argues that Virginia’s [similar] program is “abhorrent”…[and] introduced a bill that would have abolished the program [but other politicians]…derailed [the] bill

Cooties (#884) 

UK cops are still shoehorning people into their public masturbatory fantasy of “pop-up brothels”:

Three men and a woman have been arrested for [consensual sex dysphemized as “]slavery[” in a raid on an apparent incall dysphemized as]…a “pop-up brothel”…Two [migrant] women…were [also arrested and]…are currently being [held pending deportation]…

“Safeguarded” is the UK euphemism for “held without trial or charge pending deportation”.  The term is Orwellian even in a field littered with such propaganda.

Torture Chamber (#1098) 

Stop faking!

An Alabama man [locked] in a prison mental health [cell] overheated and died in December after temperatures inside his cell topped 101 degrees Fahrenheit.  Tommy Lee Rutledge was found unresponsive in Donaldson [cage stack] on the night of Dec. 7, sitting near the window of his s[olitary-confinement] cell with his head “facing out the window,” in an apparent attempt to breathe cool air…his core body temperature [had] reached 109 degrees…[Screws refuse to explain] how temperatures inside the…cell skyrocketed past 100 degrees on a winter night with a low of 31 degrees…citing an “ongoing” investigation…

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