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Posts Tagged ‘South Carolina’

Sex trafficking stings often serve as a general dragnet for petty offenses.  –  Elizabeth Nolan Brown

Innocence Never Had

To cops, sex workers can only be victims or criminals:

Two 17-year-old girls were arrested as part of a “human trafficking” operation in Volusia County, Florida…18 people [in all] were arrested…[on] charges including prostitution, drug possession, and probation violations…[oddly, the sheriff actually admitt]ed that “what they were doing was prostitution—they were doing it willingly…they both went to great lengths and showed us things that they’re doing this because they want to do it, they’re not doing it because they were forced to do it…One of [the girls] had an outstanding warrant for her arrest” and [so] was…[locked in a cage like a stray dog], while the other “was returned to her father” [whom she had apparently run away from]…It’s rare for police departments to admit that they arrest teenagers for prostitution in the first place…and authorities almost never acknowledge that teenagers may sell sex for myriad reasons, not only because they’ve been abducted and forced into it…So it’s actually somewhat refreshing to see the sheriff in this case be open about what really went down (the teens were arrested) and not try to overplay the heroics by insisting that his office saved children from sex trafficking…


If Men Were Angels

Oh look, it’s another “youth pastor”:

A [typical and representative South Carolina] youth pastor…sexually abus[ed] a teenage boy for more than two years…Michael Paul Keech…[was] charged with…[offenses] stretching from July 2019 to February 2022…[when] a family member of the…victim reported signs of the abuse to [the cops]…

To Molest and Rape

This paper copsucks so hard, it even puts the word “rape” in scare quotes:

A Stockton [California cop raped at least]…three women…Nicholas Bloed [was sacked by]…the Stockton Police Department…[after he enjoyed] about five months…paid [vacation] while [other cops were trying to figure out if they could cover up his crimes]…Bloed…repeated[ly]…pulled [women] over, [sexually] harassed and sexually violated…[them, one of them] for several years…Dan Gilleon, the…attorney representing the three women, has described [the rapes committed by] Bloed…as “rape”…

Morality Lessons (#1133) 

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

A…Pennsylvania [politician] has introduced a [copycat] bill mandating default “porn filters” on phones and computers sold in the state…Jim…Gregory, whose background as a TV sports journalist does not seem to involve any neuroscience expertise, claims that these unspecified “porn filters” would “shield children from the harmful effects pornographic material can have on developing brains”…

The Clueless Leading the Hysterical (#1185)

Some reporters still refuse to grasp that nobody is going to give expensive edibles to your spawn for free:

The Pennsylvania state police want parents to [believe the stupid scary tale that]…your child might receive [THC or Psilocybin edibles] while trick-or-treating this Halloween…These products could be confused [by morons] with candy and accidentally distributed to children…PSP is not aware of any incidents where these products were distributed to children but [wants to whip up fear to justify their bloated budget]…

But while Pennsylvania cops admit their stories have no basis in reality, Alabama cops are willing to blatantly lie to whip up hysteria:

Macon County Sheriff Andre Brunson said he was six years old when he went to a trick-or-treat fair with his mom…[and] he was forced by a stranger to each [sic] his candy…Brunson recalled his doctor telling his parents the candy he tasted was laced with…LSD.  The sheriff said he was hospitalized and was unconscious for just tasting this candy.  He [also claims]…his department sees drugs that look just like candy and even sweets with razor blades in them…

There has literally never been a case of a kid getting drugs or a razor blade in trick-or-treat, so if his department has “seen” that it was in their own sick imaginations.

The Cop Myth (#1262)

Sleeping with a cop is one of the most dangerous things a woman can do:

A Gonzales [Louisiana cop] who…beat…his [wife also]…bragged that he would get away with [it]…Michael Britt…was arrested…for…domestic abuse…includ[ing]…repeatedly kick[ing] the victim in the groin and…chok[ing] her.  The victim told [cops] that she’s been in a “violent relationship” with Britt for over a decade….[but] felt “stuck in her situation”…because [she knew] “cops [routinely get]…away with domestic violence”…

Thought Control (#1268)

Apparently, I was destined to fight censors regardless of my career path:

In the name of “curriculum transparency,” Florida…has…hastily assembled [a] censorship council…[which will attempt to indoctrinate] public school librarians to abide by new restrictions…the council was…staffed under suspicious circumstances, with the state Education Department ignoring its own call for official candidates from local school districts and instead filling most of the slots with [pro-censorship] activists…in Brevard County…the department went with…Michelle Beavers…[h]ead…[of] the local chapter of Moms for Liberty, a [pro-censorship group at the forefront of this year’s book-burning crusade]…Meanwhile, censorship measures that initially targeted school libraries were extended to individual teachers’ classroom collections, which must now “be reviewed by a [functionary of the State to ensure ideological compliance with Party teachings”…

 

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What is it with government agencies & the media teaming up to Streisand some dumb thing…almost no one has ever…heard about…into a thing…everyone knows about?  –  Mike Masnick

Do As I Say, Not As I Do

It’s too bad most arrests aren’t of other cops:

Deputies in South Dakota have arrested a Louisiana state [cop], accusing him of hiring a prostitute while in town for a…conference…Kirk Thibodeaux…has been [rewarded with a paid vacation]…pending the criminal and administrative investigations…

So What Else Is New? (#504)

I’ve never understood why some men are so attached to this notion:

…a[t] orgasm…a “milky fluid” is excreted from the urethra…[but] about 5 percent of women release a clear liquid…studies have determined the milky fluid comes from the Skene glands…[and] scientists in Japan have just published research that [demonstrates] the [clear] fluid comes from the bladder, stating only the “milky fluid”…can be classed as the female ejaculation…Miyabi Inoue…and her colleagues injected blue dye mixed with water into the bladders of five female volunteers w[ith a history of “squirting”]…after a subject was stimulated to the point of climax, a researcher collected the ejected liquid in a sterile cup, and in all five women it was blue…[true] female ejaculation…contains prostate-specific antigen…[and the squirted] liquid from four of the women…was found to contain PSA, suggesting they produced female ejaculate around the same time as they squirted urine, and the two fluids mixed together in the urethra.  Despite the fact previous studies have [produced similar findings]…the[y were] met with skepticism from hordes of men online…Women were quick to mock some of the shocked men and their responses, explaining it was something “women knew all along…Men need scientific study to admit they are being peed on and not actually gods in bed,” one scoffed…

Gullible’s Travels (#977)

Americans will believe basically any scaremongering about teenagers:

…the number of videos…of teens calling people idiots for even daring to think of putting a Tide pod in their mouth far, far outnumbered the extraordinarily few videos of people actually putting a Tide pod in their mouth.  As some people have noted, it’s way more dangerous to talk about teenagers as if they’re all too stupid to know not to put a Tide pod in their mouth.  But the media absolutely can’t resist.  Last…week…the FDA (for whatever reason) released a consumer alert saying that people shouldn’t cook their chicken in NyQuil, calling it “a recent social media challenge”…of course, like all the earlier examples, this…turned out to be a whole lot of…adults freaking out over things that kids weren’t actually doing…the whole thing started as a shitpost on 4chan where someone made a joke about cooking chicken in NyQuil…and some people [making videos] reacting to the joke.  And, then, of course, the FDA Streisanded the whole idea into becoming a thing.  According to…TikTok…there were only five searches for NyQuil chicken…on Sept. 14, one day before the FDA posted its statement.  By Sept. 21, searches on the topic had increased by more than 1,400 times

A Broker in Pillage (#985)

The South Carolina Supreme Court declares itself illegitimate:

In a major blow against government accountability, the South Carolina Supreme Court…upheld the state’s civil forfeiture laws, which let police [openly steal] cash, cars, and even ho[us]es, without ever filing criminal charges.  By overturning a lower court ruling that declared civil forfeiture unconstitutional, the decision jeopardizes property rights for [every citizen]…in…nearly 40% of all forfeiture cases…the owner was never convicted of a crime.  And under state law, if an owner doesn’t formally file a claim for their seized property, [cops] win a “default judgment” and keep [the stolen property]…Worse, state law provides a powerfully perverse incentive to police for profit.  [When any] property [is stolen by cops], the [robbers’ gang] keeps the first $1,000 and then 75% of the remainder.  Prosecutors receive 20%, while a mere 5% is sent to the general fund. Since 2009, [cops have robbed citizens of]…nearly $97 million

Disaster (#1234)

An amicus curiae brief was recently filed in the FOSTA challenge by a group of organizations including Decriminalize Sex Work, The Sex Workers Project of the Urban Justice Center, Freedom Network, Brooklyn Defender Services, The Erotic Laborers Alliance of New England, Old Pros, the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom, New York Transgender Advocacy Group, Free Speech Coalition,  SWOP Brooklyn, GLITS, and the St. James Infirmary.  Elizabeth Nolan Brown has an in-depth look at the arguments in the suit and brief, and you can see a PDF of the brief here.  In related news, the Woodhull Foundation (one of the parties to the FOSTA challenge) has recently launched a petition seeking to block the so-called EARN IT Act; I’m not sure if petitions have any effect in such cases, but I suppose they can’t hurt.

Dangerous Speech (#1270)

The government’s evil clown show has been renewed for another season:

The prosecution of Backpage founders Michael Lacey and James Larkin…can continue to drag on, per a new ruling from the…9th Circuit.  The court [is pretending] that trying them again after a mistrial…would not count as double jeopardy.  “No one is the least surprised”…Lacey tells Reason…”We have always believed we must rely upon jurors, not judges, for a fair shake. And so to trial.”  Lacey, Larkin, and the other defendants are likely to face trial again in 2023, though no date has been set.  That would mean a sixth calendar year in which their lives are upended by this…seemingly eternal attempt to put people in prison for running a website where sex workers advertised.

Permanent Record (#1274)

If prohibitionists really want to “rescue” sex workers, why do they keep trying to shut us out of other jobs?

A [teacher] who set up an OnlyFans account to supplement her income was fired from her…job…after her employer found out about the account…[thanks to a self-appointed morality cop who also] posted photos from the OnlyFans account without her consent…Sarah Juree worked full-time as a teacher in South Bend, Indiana…but…was unable to support her family on the modest salary of $55,000 per year…her rent alone cost nearly half of her income and her employer didn’t offer health insurance…Around the time Juree set up her OnlyFans account, she…had a casual conversation with a colleague and their boss about side gigs that fall under the sex work umbrella, including OnlyFans pages.  “My boss got really excited and said, ‘Yeah, you can start a page.  You can make a lot of money’…I was like, ‘Great, I’m not going to have any issues with work because my boss literally told me to sell my panties on OnlyFans”…

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You don’t address issues in a broken criminal legal system by layering technology on them.  –  Jumana Musa

Permanent Record

Surely you didn’t think this would only be used to punish sex workers?

Erick Adame says that he has been fired from his position as the morning meteorologist on Spectrum News NY1 for a leaked appearance on an adult cam site.  Adame [said he was]…aiming to “share [his] truth rather than let others control the narrative of [his] life”…[and] not[ed] that his psychiatrist has called his actions “compulsive behavior” and that he is “not in a position to disagree”…Adame made a point to highlight that while he regrets his appearance on the website, he rejects any criticism that may come about his sexuality…He also filed a lawsuit against Unit 4 Media Ltd. to seek the identity of the anonymous user who leaked the content of him on the adult site…

The Pro-Rape Coalition (#754) 

Just another study showing the same results as every other one:

A recent study published in the academic journal Crime & Delinquency suggests that sexual offenders rarely replicate what they see in pornography as a driver of sexual aggression…the research suggests that “sexual scripts learned through pornography use are not present in patterns of sexual offending behavior,” reports Craig Harper in his recurring column “Articles of Heterodoxy” for the Psychology Today directory website…Other research has arrived at similar conclusions.  The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) and Stetson University in Florida, in a paper published in the summer of 2020 for the academic journal Trauma, Violence, & Abuse found that pornography does not cause violent sex crimes.  Harper referenced this study in his Psychology Today column, as well.  The researchers, Chris Ferguson…and Richard Hartley…found that there are scores of poorly designed studies that “tended to be more likely to support a link between pornography and sexually assaultive behavior…Our evidence suggests that policymakers should examine other causes of sexual aggression and that beliefs about pornography may be driven more by methodological mistakes than sound science”…

Welcome to the Future (#944)

Fascists are trying to destroy young people’s lives before they even get started:

For a few thousand dollars a year, Social Sentinel offer[s] schools across the country sophisticated technology to s[py on] social media posts from students…[thus] allowing campus police to surveil student protests…as more students have embraced social media as a digital town square to express opinions and organize demonstrations, many college police departments have been using taxpayer dollars to pay for Social Sentinel’s services to monitor what they say.  At least 37 colleges…collectively educating hundreds of thousands of students, have used Social Sentinel since 2015.  The true number…could be far higher…and…the company has been moving in a new and [even] more [dangerously] invasive direction — allowing schools to monitor student emails on university accounts…a…private Ohio-based company…acquired Social Sentinel in 2020…and…changed the name…to Navigate360 Detect earlier this year…

Choke Point (#993) 

In a fascist system, politicians’ inability to pass a law doesn’t stop them from getting what they want:

Government officials continue deputizing private businesses to implement restrictive policies that can’t win traction through the political process or are forbidden by the Constitution.  The latest…development comes in the form of a specific merchant category code for retailers of firearms and ammunition, breaking them out from the broader category of specialty retailers in which they were previously included.  The code makes credit card purchases from such businesses much easier to track and potentially exposes buyers and sellers to harassment…That has industry insiders worried that politicians are again weaponizing the financial system to target activities they don’t like but haven’t been able to ban through law…such as abortion…

To Molest and Rape (#1103)

It took 35 years of evil for the government to notice a serial rapist:

A [typical and representative] Kansas [cop] who had long…rap[ed] and terroriz[ed] Black women as he p[row]led the streets of Kansas City has been indicted on federal charges that he repeatedly sexually assaulted two women over several years while on duty…Roger Golubski, 69…face[s] a maximum possible sentence of life in prison…

Pyrrhic Victory (#1229)

Clearview is once again trying to rehabilitate its reputation among useful idiots:

…Andrew Grantt Conlyn…[was] the passenger…[when] his [drunk] friend drove [wrecked the car at] approximately 100 miles per hour…When he came to, his friend was gone, the car was on fire and his seatbelt buckle was jammed.  Luckily, a good Samaritan intervened, prying open the driver’s side door and pulling Mr. Conlyn out of the burning vehicle…that Wednesday night in March 2017…[after] the police…found the body of his friend, Colton Hassut, in the bushes near the crash…[they decided to try to railroad] Conlyn…[because they believe no tragedy should go unexploited as an excuse to destroy someone]’s life.  If Clearview AI…hadn’t granted his lawyer special access to [its] facial recognition database…Conlyn might have spent up to 15 years in prison because the police [didn’t care whom they crucified]…Clearview…now plans to offer access to public defenders.  Hoan Ton-That, the chief executive, said this would help “balance the scales of justice,” but…“I think it’s a rare situation in which most defense attorneys would want to use it,” said Jerome Greco, who oversees a forensics technology lab at the Legal Aid Society, in New York City.  “This is mostly being done as a P.R. stunt to try to push back against the negative publicity that Clearview has about its tool and how it’s being used by law enforcement”…

Thought Control (#1268)

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

The Greenville County [South Carolina] Republican Party wants [politicians] to investigate who ordered and displayed a number of LGBTQ children’s books at public libraries earlier this year.  It also wants the county to ban books that mention LGBTQ topics from the children and juvenile sections of the county’s libraries…The resolution names a handful of children’s book titles…[including] Twas the Night Before Pride, My Shadow is PurpleThe Rainbow Parade, I’m Not a Girl, and My Own Way: Celebrating Gender…Jeff Davis, GCGOP chairman, said party members have checked the books out of the library and plan to [steal them so as]…to prevent them from being displayed for children to see…“They’re downstairs here at the (GCGOP) headquarters,” Davis said…

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen would-be censors advocating the actual theft of books from libraries, and I suspect it won’t be the last.

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After the government does something especially awful, there is usually an avalanche of horror stories illustrating exactly what reasonable people warned would happen after the awful government act.  The overturn of Roe v Wade is no exception; if I had included these stories in my normal news columns, they would’ve completely dominated most of the late July installments.  So instead, I opted to collect them all together here; future updates to these stories will appear in regular news columns under the appropriate tags.

One of the strongest reasons to oppose authoritarian laws of any kind is that they inevitably harm people the politicians insist they weren’t trying to target:

A sexual assault survivor chooses sterilization so that if she is ever attacked again, she won’t be forced to give birth to a rapist’s baby.  An obstetrician delays inducing a miscarriage until a woman with severe pregnancy complications seems “sick enough.”  A lupus patient must stop taking medication that controls her illness because it can also cause miscarriages.  Abortion restrictions in a number of states and the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade are having profound repercussions in reproductive medicine as well as in other areas of medical care…Even in medical emergencies, doctors are sometimes declining immediate treatment. In the past week, an Ohio abortion clinic received calls from two women with ectopic pregnancies…who[se] doctors wouldn’t treat them…

More about the aforementioned lupus drug many women are now being denied:

Methotrexate is a cheap, common drug prescribed to millions of Americans…[for] rheumatic illnesses…inflammatory bowel disease, psoriasis or cancer…[but because] it is used off-label to end ectopic pregnancies…it could be restricted by doctors or pharmacists even in states…that do not ban abortion…in low doses, it has proved to be one of the safest, least expensive and most effective treatments for roughly a dozen autoimmune conditions, from juvenile idiopathic arthritis to Crohn’s disease…“I have gotten some reports where children have been denied methotrexate for their juvenile arthritis until they’ve proven they’re not pregnant,” said Dr. Cuoghi Edens…a rheumatology expert…“The majority of rheumatic diseases affect females at substantially higher rates than males…The prevalence of rheumatoid arthritis in women to men is 3 to 1.  For lupus it’s 10 to 1.  And so rheumatology is a very female-predominant patient population”…some doctors have already stopped prescribing methotrexate rather than risk [persecution]…Many pharmacists have likewise refused to fill methotrexate prescriptions, or have demanded additional proof before dispensing the medication to patients they believe could get pregnant…

And it’s not just a few fundamentalist asshat pharmacists, either:

…the largest pharmacy chain in the country sent explicit instructions to its pharmacists informing them that new checks would be implemented to confirm the reason a doctor prescribes a drug before filling routine medications for patients…CVS headquarters sent a memo to pharmacies in [Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Montana, Oklahoma, and Texas]…review[ing] diagnosis codes that are deemed acceptable for dispensation, which include miscarriage…If they find abortion is the intended use, they “must refuse to fill the prescription”…

Some of the tyrannies forced-birth fetishists are trying to impose are blatantly unconstitutional:

South Carolina [politician]s introduced legislation that would make it illegal to “aid, abet or conspire with someone” to obtain an abortion…Provisions would outlaw providing information over the internet or phone about how to obtain an abortion.  It would also make it illegal to host a website or “[provide] an internet service” with information that is “reasonably likely to be used for an abortion”…the proposal is…modeled off a blueprint created by the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), an antiabortion group, and designed to be replicated by [politician]s across the country…

Other FOSTA-inspired laws which encourage nuisance lawsuits have unfortunately not yet been declared unconstitutional:

Nearly four years after a woman ended an unwanted pregnancy with abortion pills obtained at a Phoenix clinic, she finds herself mired in an ongoing lawsuit [after]…A judge allowed the woman’s ex-husband to establish an estate for the embryo, which had been aborted in its seventh week of development.  The ex-husband filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the clinic and its doctors in 2020, alleging that…[he has the right to make decisions for his ex-wife]…

Naturally, this new extension of the police state will be enabled by the same fascist surveillance tactics as the War on Whores:

Many of the states rushing to ban abortion are also the biggest users of a surveillance tool that [cops] could use to track women ending their pregnancies — the location data from people’s phones…states across the country are already using this kind of data for other [surveillance and harassment].  And a POLITICO analysis found that many of the states that have criminalized abortion have relied increasingly on location data in recent years…Figures from Google…show that the company received 5,764 “geofence” warrants between 2018 and 2020 from police in the 10 states that have banned abortion as of July 5…

Of course, sex workers know all about most of these oppressions, because they’re tested on us first before being extended to amateurs:

Madolline Gourley, a Brisbane resident…was treated like a criminal during her transit through Los Angeles on 30 June, where she was detained at the border due to suspicions about her intention to house- and cat-sit in exchange for accommodation while holidaying in Canada.  Gourley was held in a detention room, interrogated twice, patted down, fingerprinted and photographed…At one point a US b[ureaucrat] asked Gourley, who was wearing a loose-fitting dress, whether she was pregnant.  The same question was repeated as she was moved between rooms.  When she again [replied that]…she was not pregnant, Gourley was asked whether she had had an abortion…

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It’s hard to imagine that in just a few short weeks we will have no ability to provide…care [to kids impregnated by rape].  –  Caitlin Bernard

Property of the State

Such pro-life, very protecting children:

…three days after the Supreme Court issued its…decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, Dr. Caitlin Bernard, an Indianapolis obstetrician-gynecologist, took a call from a colleague, a child abuse doctor in Ohio…[where sociopathicc politicians] had outlawed any abortion after six weeks. Now this doctor had a 10-year-old patient in the office who was six weeks and three days pregnant…abortion providers [in Indiana] have…experienc[ed] a dramatic increase in the number of patients coming to their clinics from neighboring states with more restrictive policies…

If Men Were Angels

It’s striking how much the sexual behavior of “pastors” resembles that of cops:

A Florida pastor has been arrested for exposing himself and masturbating outside a Starbucks…Enginio Dali Muniz-Colon…is a pastor in Kissimmee and…[w]as…previously…charged over a similar incident at the same Starbucks…

Stalkers in Blue (#814)

If this shocks you, you haven’t been paying attention:

Angeli Rose Gomez, the mother who ran into Robb Elementary School to save her two young kids during the [Uvalde, Texas school] shooting, says she’s since faced a barrage of frightening harassment from [cops] in retaliation for her rightfully harsh criticisms of them in the media.  Gomez’s lawyer, Mark Di Carlo, announced plans this week to take legal action…and also offered specific, chilling details about what their harassment of Gomez has entailed…Gomez was recently pulled over…and…falsely accused of having “illegal immigrants” in her car…police parked outside Gomez’s house for 45 minutes and flashed their lights at her and her mother as they took a walk…police approached an unnamed family member of Gomez’s, and told the[m]…to tell Gomez to stop speaking to the media…

Welcome to the Future (#1052)

No, it can’t.  And scientists who create weapons of oppression like this are moral imbeciles:

An artificial intelligence can now predict the location and rate of crime across a city a week in advance with up to 90 per cent accuracy.  Similar systems have been shown to perpetuate racist bias in policing, and the same [is] true in this case, but the researchers who created this AI [deny it]…Ishanu Chattopadhyay at the University of Chicago [is the chief badge-licker on this project]…

The Convergence of Censors

I’m sure the “freeze peach” morons will vomit out something about fires and theaters:

A [spook] and two p[igs] showed up to a North Texas woman’s house on Thursday morning…to…threaten…he[r]…after she posted in anger over the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade.  The feds’ letter to Madeline Walker [ignored the fact that hyperbolically]…tweet[ing] about burning government buildings [does not constitute a credible threat or any other category of speech that is considered unprotected by the First Amendment]…and…threaten[ed her]…with…criminal charges…Joshua Henry, a [thug] for DHS, confirmed the letter’s authenticity…Walker [pointed out that]…“Pastor Dillon Awes of Stedfast Baptist Church in Fort Worth is allowed to preach that gay people should be ‘lined up against the wall and shot in the back of the head.’ when people reported him to the police they said, ‘free speech’”…Henry [responded by threatening her again for] sharing the letter on Twitter…[and demanded a US citizen be] “remorseful” [for exercising her civil rights rather than kowtowing to the precious fee-fees of petty bureaucrats]…

The Vultures Descend

Some tyrannies are too loathsome even for some cops:

Charleston County Sheriff Kristin Graziano commented…on her office’s role in the recently passed law that essentially bans abortion after six weeks.  The state legislature [demands] abortion providers to send sheriff’s offices reports of women who were impregnated by rape or incest and are trying to terminate the pregnancy.  “I want the public to know that while these providers are now mandated by law to send us these reports regardless of the will of their patients, we will not contact the patient if she doesn’t want us to…sexual assault…is traumatizing, and my agency will do everything we can to offer…respect to these women who are seeking health care”…

Thought Control (#1240)

If you support restrictions on “offensive” speech, you helped create this lunacy:

Virginia Beach [shyster] and [politician] Tim Anderson is suing publisher Oni Press and author Maia Kobabe on behalf his client Tommy Altmann, a[nother politician]…claim[ing] that Kobabe’s work is damaging under the state’s obscenity lawsGender Queer and A Court of Mist and Fury–the other book being challenged in this suit–do not fall under obscene materials in any definition of the law[, but Anderson fully admits his intention is to be a nuisance]…

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They do it just because they can.  –  Richard Serrano, of abusive screws

Torture Chamber 

And yet ProPublica still licks the boot by obediently and deferentially referring to torture as “correction”:

[The state of Illinois hides] disciplinary records for [screws after]…four years…So WBEZ and ProPublica used the files that are available to try to piece together how the system responds when…[screws inflict mayhem on] prisoners…Through that effort, WBEZ and ProPublica identified 18 Illinois [screws] who…had [brutalized] or sexually [assaulted victims caged] in the state’s prisons…including at least] one [murder]…all 18 held onto their jobs after the [atrocities]; 11 remain employed by the Illinois Department of [Torturing Caged People] today…


If Men Were Angels

“Pastors” are as bad as cops:

The…pastor of a Southern Baptist church in South Carolina has been charged with molesting a child under 16…Tracy Darin Turner resigned [on] April 18, 2021, from Trinity Point Church [after somebody reported him to the cops]…

To Molest and Rape

Like inviting a vampire into one’s home:

[A British cop named] David Longden-Thurgood…[raped a] woman…[he had met] on the Bumble dating app…after a day of…exchanging sexualised messages and…naked selfies, the woman invited him to her home…but…repeatedly said “I don’t want sex”…when she noticed Longden-Thurgood taking his boxers off, she told him [again and]…he replied “don’t worry we won’t have sex”…then, “without warning”, raped her]…

Stalkers in Blue

Sleeping with a cop is one of the most dangerous things a woman can do:

A Florida [cop]…hid Apple AirTags in his ex-girlfriend’s car and bag to track and stalk her…Javier Magarin…was [rewarded]…with [a paid vacation]…after she…report[ed] the [harassment] to his employer…[Magarin also threatened her]…and…canceled [her airline reservations by]…logg[ing] into her email account…

The Last Shall Be First (#1230) 

Seeking a temporary halt to a deranged jihad:

A new lawsuit…is challenging [Texas] Gov. Greg Abbott’s di[ktat] to [persecu]te parents who provide gender-affirming care to their transgender children.  The lawsuit was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and Lambda Legal on behalf of three families…[and] also seeks to block the state from [persecu]ting any families that belong to PFLAG…The state is currently blocked from investigating one family that brought a prior legal challenge.  This lawsuit seeks to widen the number of people who cannot be [persecu]ted under the di[ktat]…

The Last Shall Be First (#1232) 

Politicians are competing to see who can criminalize parents for the most deranged reasons:

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis [blovia]ted…that he might urge the state’s child protective services to investigate parents who take their children to drag shows…The [threat was in response]…to…videos showing young children attending a Dallas drag show…which…were…the [subject of performative outage by other members of DeSantis’ playground “culture war” team.  The other team, in order to prove they had just as little respect for Constitutional rights, responded by demanding]…new gun laws…

The Cop Myth (#1235)

It’s hardly strange that a typical, representative cop became chief:

Noble Waidelich rose through the ranks of the Ukiah [California cop shop]…and eventually [became] chief.  [He abused his fiancee] Amanda Carley…[until] she packed her things and moved her children out of the house they owned together in 2015…“It started out as a shove and him standing in the doorway when I wanted to take a break.  Then he was throwing me down on the table and swerving into oncoming traffic, threatening to drop me off in the middle of nowhere,” Carley said.  She did not hesitate to disclose the abuse to her friends and co-workers…[but despite being backed up by her kids and another cop named] Freddy Kepplinger…Waidelich was not questioned…[despite] evidence of the injuries Carley had endured…[the district attorney] declined to file criminal charges against Waidelich…and [instead]…interrogated [Carley] and threatened [her] with criminal charges…

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Asset forfeiture laws imperil people’s rights to property and due process.  –  Elizabeth Patton

Droit du Seigneur

What the people who enforce “sex trafficking” laws are really like:

[Typical and representative Honolulu cop] Mason Jordan [i]s a “hands-on sexual offender of multiple children” who allegedly bullied victims to send him their nude pictures and…[then tried to force them into] prostitution…[with him as] pimp…he…also [liked to fantasy role-play]…as a teenage girl [online] to…stalk…[threaten, and attempt to blackmail] a woman…

A Broker in Pillage

Nobody will be safe until this odious, contemptible practice is recognized as unconstitutional:

…Kansas [cop shops] raked in $21 million through civil asset forfeiture over the past two years, according to a report…by the Americans for Prosperity Foundation…less than one-quarter of the owners have been convicted of a crime…half of all [that stolen loot]…had a value of $3,100 or less, meaning it would be impractical in those cases, if not a net loss, to hire an attorney to try and recover one’s property…the numbers…omit [the federal governent’s cut of the spoils, amounting to] more than $5 million…

Magic Formulae

Remember this next time somebody tells you that “cop checks” actually work:

[At least nine cops in British Columbia] engag[ed] in “disgusting, appalling” behaviour as they went to “extreme lengths” to prove they were not cops…[they] penetrated a colleague using a vegetable, [shat] on [each]…other and exposed their genitalia…[so-called] experts [who somehow didn’t know cops did stuff like this]…are now calling for an immediate overhaul of undercover tactics…[law professor] Kent Roach…expressed concerns over the liberal use of deceptive and even violent tactics which Canadian police are allowed to use in undercover operations…

Property of the State

Most tyranny starts with governments claiming they want to “protect” people:

Poland has officially started recording pregnancies in a digital database when [women] seek medical care…The country…has a near-total abortion ban with narrow exceptions…[which means that] every pregnancy that doesn’t end in a live birth is a potential crime scene [in the authoritarian mind]…the Polish government…[claims] it’s simply trying to protect [women] from X-rays and medicines that could harm the…[fetus and pretends that]…only medical professionals will have access to the data…[but even if true, that hardly seems likely to withstand cop demands]…

If Men Were Angels

“Youth leaders” = “youth pastors” = predatory perverts:

A…youth leader at two South Carolina churches…has been charged with sex crimes involving children…William Pinckney Carpenter III…[molested] victims as young as 7 [between 2016 and 2021]…

To Molest and Rape

Rapist cops never stop until they’re caged or dead:

A…[typical and representative Georgia cop] pleaded guilty to raping a woman [in]…2019…David Wilborn…[used the pretext of a traffic] stop [to]…block…a car with his p[igmobile].  After…[humiliating the driver], he [raped the passenger at gunpoint.  After]…Wilborn [left]…the victim immediately called police…Wilborn was sentenced to a term of life in prison to serve 25 years without parole, with the balance on probation.  He must also register as a sex offender.  Wilborn was previously a…[cop in] Atlanta…but resigned after…[sexually assaulting a woman in] 2007…

Served Cold (#1156) 

As OUR collapses, expect it to engage in increasingly-petty interference with sex workers’ lives:

The abrupt cancellation…of the Latin American adult industry conference, LALExpo, has been linked to a single press release from controversial, Mormon-led U.S. organization Operation Underground Railroad…As the local religious and conservative campaign attempted to sway local officials into denying LALExpo…permits, OUR issued a press release on June 3…seemingly attempting…to insinuate that the trade show’s sponsors were somehow responsible for “human trafficking”…

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Here I stand, I can do no other.  –  Rikki de la Vega

A Broker in Pillage

Unlike other government departments, the IRS doesn’t even bother to accuse people of actual crimes before robbing them blind:

…Institute for Justice client Lyndon McLellan saw the…IRS…reach…into his bank account [to steal] his life savings without warning or cause in 2014.  McLellan [owned] a small convenience store…in Fairmont, North Carolina…he…worked long hours and rarely took vacations…Yet federal agents accused him of violating so-called structuring laws because his business frequently made bank deposits in amounts under $10,000…the[y stole] more than $107,000…”It took me 13 years to save that much money,” he says.  “And it took fewer than 13 seconds for the government to take it away”…

All-Purpose Excuse

“Sex trafficking” is a convenient excuse for any tyranny:

The Manitoba government is tabling a bill…[which] would require hotels and people operating on online accommodation platforms, such as Airbnb, to keep a record of guests’ information, including their names and addresses…and…to hand over that information to police…on…demand…without a warrant…[politician Rochelle Squires tried to justify this incredible violation of civil rights by vomiting out the words] “human trafficking”…and “children”…

Feminists and Other Puritans

It’s nice to see someone whose name isn’t Maggie McNeill writing about this:

…the worst form of prudery and repression is that which comes from those who also claim to be feminists…Women’s rights activists have been divided about sex from the beginning.  In the nineteenth century, the “free love” movement, which promoted birth control and sought to replace traditional male-dominated marriage with consensual unions of equal partners, butted heads with the “social purity” movement obsessed with controlling men’s lust as a way of eradicating such “evils” of prostitution and venereal disease…Those leaning towards the equality pole welcomed and worked with men who agreed with their goals, like Frederick Douglass and John Stuart Mill.  Those on the protectionist side, however, viewed men with skepticism, and demanded that they prove their worth by swearing to be chaste and “chivalrous” towards women…Not far off from contemporary pledges to not use porn or “end demand for sex trafficking”!  If the women who worked for social purity back then sounded like religious zealots, it’s because they were…

The Puritan Recrudescence

Politicians are increasingly convinced that they’re allowed to redefine legal concepts as they wish:

A strange new bill introduced by Oklahoma [politician] Rob Standridge would make it illegal to knowingly give “obscene material” to a “vulnerable person,” explicitly including unhoused people…SB 1522 [also includes] an unconstitutional redefinition of…“obscene material” as “any description, exhibition, presentation or representation, in whatever form, of nudity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement or sadomasochistic abuse”…Such supposedly obscene materials would include “book, magazine, newspaper, pamphlet, poster, print, picture, figure, image, description, motion picture film, record, recording tape, CD-ROM disk, magnetic disk memory [sic], magnetic tape memory, videotape, computer software, video game,” and other unspecified media to be determined by the authorities.  Despite his seeming concern for the moral hygiene of the unhoused, Standridge recently opposed a new homeless shelter, making statements conflating Oklahoma’s unhoused population with “sex offenders” and calling them “a public safety risk”…

Stalkers in Blue (#987)

Another cop demonstrates what he is:

A Bay Area [cop] has been charged with masturbating in front of a family that called police during a fraught domestic violence call…Matthew Dominguez…“milled around the home…keep[ing] the daughter in view of his Body Worn Camera”…Dominguez [later]…unzipped his pants and began rubbing his crotch…[in full view of the mother and] daughter…Dominguez [kept] follow[ing the daughter]…around…The mother and daughter then went to find…the father…who…[also] “saw…Dominguez…with his erect penis in his left hand”…

Blunt Instrument (#1012)

This would be a much better article if it didn’t pretend that prohibitionism is a solely a phenomenon of the “right wing”:

For the past year, low-income Asian women in Newmarket [Ontario] have been engaged in a fierce battle with [politicians]…working to close down their massage businesses by claiming that the workers are both disreputable criminals and sex trafficking victims…in January…the town council imposed a set of regulations requiring massage businesses to get a new type of licence…[under] threat…[of] fines of $4,000 to $5,000 per day…the town…[is] using a fake anti-trafficking campaign…with zealous support from [the usual suspects]…thanks to centuries of racism and employment segregation in North America, body rubs are associated with crime, sex work, and people of colour…Newmarket town council declared their intention to create new rules that would drive out the businesses that they defined as “appeal[ing] to sexual appetites,” and the “brothels” that town councillors claimed were “hosts for human trafficking.”  Their…plan was to get rid of suspected sex work by tightening the rules so that only businesses whose workers have formal educational certifications from Canada could get the newly [inven]ted Personal Wellness Establishment Licence…[such] certifications can take years…and tuition can cost thousands of dollars…

Repeatedly claiming that prohibition in Canada is “right wing” when Trudeau and his party eagerly promote it is tantamount to pissing on the readers’ legs and telling them it’s raining.

Torture Chamber (#1182)

The government needs to be buried in lawsuits before this will stop:

[Young men] at a South Carolina…[prison are locked in cages] with feces on the floor, mold on the walls, and cockroaches in their food, according to a new lawsuit…the kids — who range in age from 13 to 19 – are [also] subjected to routine violence by [screws and] other [prisoners]…[screws also] use solitary confinement — in cells with no natural light — as a way to “protect” them from violence…some[times for]…months [at a stretch], and there [are] no meaningful educational or mental health services for the[m]…the…[prisoners] are disproportionately Black and from families that live below the federal poverty line…

Once again: it does not help young victims of governmental brutality to infantilize them as “children”.

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Technology is not magic.  –  Andrea O’Sullivan

To Molest and Rape

So many words to downplay a rape:

A Columbia [South Carolina cop]…was arrested…[for raping] an “incapacitated” person…[and] was fired from the department shortly after[ward]…Keith Ryan Williamson [committed the rape]…in October…

“Accomplished sexual battery with the victim and had reason to know that the victim was incapacitated at the time of the assault” is a ridiculously cumbersome way to say “raped a drunk woman”.

To Molest and Rape (#1158)

Rapist cops don’t only target women:

An Indianapolis [cop] is [merely] facing misconduct and battery charges…[despite sexually assaulting] a handcuffed man…multiple times before throwing him to the ground…Travis Lewis…[decided to arrest the] man who called police [in the first place, and when he resisted being forced into a pigmobile]…Lewis…grab[bed] the man’s [testicles]…and…twist[ed them violently.  In video the man can be heard screaming]…”My balls are bleeding”…Lewis [then] threw the man to the ground…

Stalkers in Blue (#1167)

Once in a while, there’s evidence of the way cops act toward women:

A…Charleston[, South Carolina cop]…was fired…after a…[woman he tried] to coerce [into sex at] a department store [secretly recorded his harassment with her phone]…Darryl Felkel…made repeated attempts to coerce the woman…at [her work in] a Dillard’s department store…the woman refuse[d]…him…but…he…[just kept on haranguing her for seven] minutes…

Decentralization (#1181)

Bitcoin is a kind of folk devil for economically-illiterate politicians:

Politicians who don’t like bitcoin rarely have one reason.  They have all of the reasons, and will seize on whichever one is most convenient or newsworthy at the time.  Right now, it’s war.  Hillary Clinton was trotted out to wag her finger at crypto exchanges that did not extralegally ban all Russians from their services. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is on the case, “monitoring” cryptocurrency for its capacity to give aid and comfort to the Ruskies…But [Elizabeth] Warren stole the show with fearmongering about…”criminals and cheats” before…direct[ing confused] questions at a representative from…a blockchain forensics company…which…is…routinely able to unmask transactions…Warren, surprised but undeterred, continued with her confused line of questioning, so proud of herself that she put a transcript of the objectively embarrassing exchange on her government webpage…

Scapegoats (#1210)

No rumor is so stupid that some politician won’t believe and repeat it:

Nebraska [politician] Bruce Bostelman…is the latest [fool] to repeat th[e] urban legend [that] “Schoolchildren dress up as animals—cats or dogs—during the school day…And now schools are wanting to put litter boxes in the schools for these children to use.  How is this sanitary?” he said…during a televised debate, before backtracking hours later amid school district denials…similar myths have made the rounds in Iowa, Michigan, and Texas, prompting the same denials from school administrators…these stories…line up perfectly with conservative fears about transgender and non-binary students and…reminiscent of how [politicians] for years insisted that same-sex marriage legalization would lead to people marrying animals…

Thought Control (#1222)

Every so often the difference between upper and lower house becomes visible:

An Idaho bill that would have cr[iminalized]…librarians who provide minors with content [politicians] deemed inappropriate is now dead in the water; it…[will] not get a hearing in the state Senate…the Idaho Senate has also declined to take up the state House’s anti-trans bill

Science! (#1223)

“Sex trafficking” fetishists keep publicizing their creepy fantasies about Ukranian women:

Social media posts from a German sex work support network [were dishonestly]…use[d as propaganda by prohibitionists] falsely claiming the group is “recruiting” Ukrainian refugees to work in brothels.  The group was in fact highlighting support for existing sex workers…Trans*Sexworks is a Berlin-based peer support and mutual aid group primarily for transgender, intersex and non-binary people who do sex work…Wren Oscyth, one of the group’s members…explained…“We have absolutely no connection to brothels or places of employment in Germany.  There currently is not a single member of our group who is employed at a brothel or club since it is very uncommon for those places to hire trans and non-binary workers”…

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There have always been efforts to censor books, but what we’re seeing right now is frankly unprecedented.  –  Carolyn Foote

Damned If You Don’t

Everyone harmed by “prostitution stings” needs to keep suing over them:

A man is suing the City of Myrtle Beach [South Carolina, and its cop shop, for enabling a sow who nonconsentually involved him in her creepy fantasy roleplay to]…wrongfully arrest…him for prostitution…Ronald Thomas Uhrie…stopped at a local gas station to purchase a drink and some scratch-off tickets when he saw a woman waving frantically at him in the parking lot…because it was dark and rainy he could not tell if he knew her or not, and so he pulled over to speak to her…[when h]e asked the woman if she needed anything…she replied that she needed $20 for oral sex.  Uhrie…[t]he[n] rolled up his window and left, not knowing the woman…was a [disguised sow out to ruin men’s lives.  Her cronies stole]…his truck…and [publicized their lies, resulting in Uhrie being] fired from his position as a diesel mechanic…unemployment…was denied because the…[government claimed people who talk to strange women who seem to be in distress deserve to starve to death in a gutter]…The [bogus] charges against Urhie…were later dismissed…Urhie is seeking lost wages, front pay, future lost wages and benefits, compensatory and consequential damages and attorney’s fees and costs…

Scapegoats (#449)

Once again, vanillas reveal themselves as the true perverts:

…In Pennsylvania, Maine, Michigan, and Iowa in recent months, school board meetings have been disrupted by [people claiming] that educators are giving special treatment to furry students…the widespread hoaxes play into a broader right-wing effort to discredit and demand further control over public education…The rumors simmered for months in districts like Central York [Pennsylvania] last year, where a “concerned parents” Facebook group promoted fears that furries “could be in your child’s classroom hissing at your child and licking themselves”…in Michigan’s Midland school district [one parent claimed]…“I heard that at least one of our schools in our town, has in one of the unisex bathrooms a litter box for the kids that identify as cats”…the [hoaxe]s soon spread to Texas, where a [politician]…claim[ed]…“Cafeteria tables are being lowered in certain…middle and high schools to allow ‘furries’ to more easily eat without utensils or their hands”…chatter about litter boxes and doggie bowls display a misunderstanding about…furries[, who] do not literally believe they are non-human animals…a furry might play-act the role of a cartoon animal, but when nature calls, she’ll step out of character and remove her costume to use a normal toilet…

You Were Warned (#1060)

You just can’t keep a bad law down:

People don’t want outsiders reading their private messages —not their physical mail, not their texts, not their DMs, nothing.  It’s a clear and obvious point, but one place it doesn’t seem to have reached is the U.S. Senate.  A group of [politicians] led by…Richard Blumenthal…and…Lindsey Graham…have re-introduced the EARN IT Act, an incredibly unpopular bill from 2020 that was dropped in the face of overwhelming opposition….the…Act would [create]…a massive new surveillance system, run by private companies, that would…scan every message sent online and report [anything that tripped error-prone algorithms] to law enforcement…anything hosted online—backups, websites, cloud photos, and more—[would be] scanned.  The bill empowers every U.S. state or territory to create sweeping new Internet regulations…as long as they somehow [include the magic word]…child…the bill [also] creates a 19-person federal commission, dominated by [pigs and spooks], which will lay out [compulso]ry “best practices” for attacking…online [privacy]…

Top Cop (#1103)

Copmala will never let go of her hatred of sex workers:

Kamala Harris is back to [ly]ing…about human trafficking.  In a speech to the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, Harris—who has a long history of dishonesty about sex trafficking—said that “in 2020 alone, there were 11,000 instances of human trafficking that were reported in the United States.”  Where did Harris get that figure?  From calls to the Polaris Project’s national human trafficking hotline…but the large numbers Polaris puts out are…just a tally of contacts to the hotline.  That includes pranks, cranks, and people reporting sightings of consensual sex work.  It’s refreshing (and all too rare) to see a major news outlet acknowledge this reality, as The Washington Post‘s Glenn Kessler did in a column last week…Kessler — who has previously tackled other false or misleading claims about human trafficking — points out that the Polaris numbers are mostly anecdotal…and…only about a third of these “potential cases” are even reported by Polaris to law enforcement.  They don’t know how many of those prompt the police to open an investigation, let alone what those investigations uncover…

The End of the Beginning (#1153) 

This would at last truly be the beginning of the end for these evil laws:

In March, the Council of the American Law Institute will meet to vote on revisions to the Model Penal Code…Though not legally binding, the Model…[h]as [been] hugely influential [since first published in 1962], with a majority of states adopting it wholly or in part.  The current revision, almost a decade in the making, will guide states to update their laws based on knowledge that we’ve acquired over the past 60 years.  The proposed revision recommends limiting the convictions that trigger [“sex offender”] registration to the most serious [actual] sex crimes…eliminating unrestricted public notification of registrants…and capping the maximum registration period to 15 years, in the absence of new sex crimes.  Crucially, the revised code recommends ending the practice of placing children on registries, except in rare cases of youth convicted in adult court of violent sex crimes committed at age 16 or older…

Thought Control (#1200)

There is nothing as contagious as a bad idea:

…libraries…[are] now a battleground in an unprecedented effort by parents and conservative politicians in Texas to ban books dealing with race, sexuality and gender from schools…hundreds of titles have been pulled from libraries across the state…over the objections of school librarians…who…face increasingly hostile work environments and mounting [bureaucratic] pressure to pre-emptively pull books that might draw complaints…school districts…report…more challenges this year than in the past two decades combined.  All but a few…targeted books dealing with racism or sexuality, the majority of them featuring LGBTQ characters and explicit descriptions of sex [and most titles drawn from lists circulated by pro-censorship groups]…Similar [crusades] are [disrupt]ing communities across the country…[but] the fight is particularly heated in Texas, where Republican state officials, including Gov. Greg Abbott, have gone as far as calling for criminal charges against any school staff member who provides [legal minors] with access to young adult novels that [censors] have labeled as “pornography”…

The Cop Myth (#1204)

41% of cops admit to beating their wives; some don’t stop with mere beating:

An Illinois state [cop murdered] his wife before [shoot]ing himself…Antonio Alvarez and [his estranged wife] Amanda…were found dead…on [January 24th, but]…the Illinois State Police…[thought] the [most important detail was that the murderer was neither in his clown car nor wearing his magic clown costume, rather than that Alvarez]…had long been in[credibly abusive]…and [murdered]…Amanda [because she]…planned to leave h[im] for good…She was [survived by] two children, ages 1 and 4 years…

The headline is so poorly written it makes it look like he murdered three people rather than one person plus himself.

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