Monday, October 15, 2018

Babysitting While Black: Georgia Man Was Stalked by Woman as He Cared for 2 White Children

The NYT ran this story as part of their usual agenda of creating racial disharmony. And it is undoubtably an unfortunate story.  It is also, however, an understandable story.  The high rate of criminality among blacks makes whites justifably suspicious of them.  And it all follows from that.  Unmentioned is that hundreds of other white  people did not react to the situation.  It is they who define white treatment of blacks

Corey Lewis first noticed the woman as he crossed the Walmart parking lot in Marietta, Ga., on Sunday afternoon. She was sitting in a Kia sedan, he said, as he led the two children he was babysitting back to his car.

By the time he had them buckled up and ready to go, he had his phone out and was live-streaming on Facebook as he narrated a story about how the strange woman had begun stalking them after he refused to let her talk to the children, Mr. Lewis, 27, said in an interview.

She followed him out of the parking lot, to the gas station across the street, and to his home, where Mr. Lewis, who is black, was questioned by a Cobb County police officer about why he had with him two young children, who are white.

“I didn’t know what was going on, what she wanted to do,” Mr. Lewis said on Tuesday, believing that the woman had called the police because he was a black man walking around with two white children. “I felt like my character was being criminalized.”

Sgt. Wayne Delk confirmed the incident, saying that an officer had responded to a call from a woman on Sunday afternoon. The police did not say whether they knew her identity.

In a series of live videos on Facebook, Mr. Lewis recorded the incident, which began in a Walmart parking lot and ended as the latest instance of a black person being reported to the police while doing a lawful activity, like golfing, napping, shopping or even canvassing.

For Mr. Lewis, the episode was particularly troubling because it happened while he was working. Mr. Lewis owns his own business, Inspired By Lewis, in which he takes care of children five days a week as part of the youth mentoring program he created three years ago. His clientele is mainly white, he said, but up until Sunday, it had never occurred to him that that would give someone a reason to call the police on him.

He said he had spent that afternoon watching 6-year-old Nicholas and 10-year-old Addison while their parents were out. After taking them to an indoor play area, he took them to Walmart to eat at the Subway, he said.

After leaving the store, he and the children were hanging out by his car when the woman pulled up and asked if the children were all right. Confused, Mr. Lewis replied, “Why wouldn’t they be O.K.?” She shrugged before driving off, he said, only to return to ask to speak to Addison. Mr. Lewis said he told her no, and she insisted on getting his license plate number before driving away, only to stop within sight.

Mr. Lewis said he drove to a nearby gas station, where she followed him. Instead of taking the children home, he drove them to his house, where he knew people would be outside.

Mr. Lewis continued to record as a police car pulled up, and the officer asked him what was going on. “I’m being followed and harassed,” he says, to which the officer replied, “I’ve heard.”

The confrontation ended without issue, with the officer seemingly convinced that the children — who offered similar explanations for what occurred — were fine, but he asked if he could check in with their parents, Mr. Lewis said.

“It just knocked us out of our chair,” David Parker, their father, said on Tuesday. “We felt horrible for Corey.”

Mr. Parker and his wife, Dana Mango, were at dinner when they received the call, and his wife had to be convinced that it was not a prank, he said.

Mr. Lewis is a family friend and well known in the community for working with children, Mr. Parker said, describing him as an “All-American guy.”

Mr. Parker said that he wanted to give the woman the benefit of doubt, but that his children were having a good time with Mr. Lewis, and they were not in any apparent danger. Mr. Lewis was also wearing his signature shirt — a bright green T-shirt bearing his company’s logo.

“I don’t think you have to watch too many ‘Law & Order’ episodes to realize kidnappers don’t usually wear fluorescent green shirts,” he said, adding that he felt Mr. Lewis had handled the situation well.

Mr. Parker said he had a proud moment when, during an interview with a reporter, his daughter was asked if she had anything she wanted to say to the woman. “She said that, ‘I would just ask her to next time, try to see us as three people rather than three skin colors because we might’ve been Mr. Lewis’s adopted children,’” he recalled.

On Tuesday, Mr. Lewis was back working with children, saying he wasn’t going to let the episode keep him from doing his job.

“You see these things, but they’re like from a distance,” he said. “But then for it to actually happen to you, it’s unbelievable.”


The differences between Christine Ford and Nobel Peace Prize-winner Nadia Murad, an Iraqi Yazidi woman

Dawn Perlmutter

Hysteria was the first mental health illness attributed to women. For centuries it was considered both a common and chronic medical disorder. Female Hysteria was intrinsically intertwined with women’s sexuality and reproductive organs. The origin of the term hysteria stems from the Greek equivalent for uterus ‘hystera’. Symptoms included everything from nervousness, sexual desire, insomnia, irritability, loss of appetite, and a "tendency to cause trouble".  Hysteria was the diagnosis for everything that men found mysterious or unmanageable in women and was used as evidence of the instability of the female mind. Many women who were diagnosed with hysteria were forced into insane asylums or to undergo surgical hysterectomies. One of the major triumphs of the feminist movement was to eradicate the diagnosis and stigma of female hysteria.

After centuries of fighting against stereotypes of women as irrational emotional hysterics, Christine Blasey Ford and her cult of feminist victims reestablished the worst stereotypes of women as fragile, defenseless, erratic and unstable. When women were marching for equal rights, equal pay and equal position in society, they did not envision being represented by a woman who is the very personification of female hysteria. Christine Blasey Ford’s fragmented recovered memory of a sexual assault, her 36-year-old ongoing trauma, uncorroborated allegations, childlike affectation, feigned helplessness and alleged irrational fears are a profile in female hysteria.

The American Psychiatric Association dropped the term female hysteria in 1952. Subsequently, the classification of disorders formerly known as female hysteria have been controversially categorized in other conditions such as schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder, conversion disorder, and anxiety attacks. Another condition that was formerly associated with hysteria is referred to as Factitious disorder also known as Munchausen Syndrome and related to Malingering. Malingerers commonly fake psychological disorders such as anxiety and fabricate trauma for a variety of reasons -- most often financial compensation tied to fraud. Munchausen Syndrome is a factitious disorder where people feign disease, illness, or psychological trauma to draw attention, sympathy, or reassurance to themselves. Symptoms include phobias, anxiety disorders, a history of recurrent hospitalization and dramatic, extremely improbable tales of their past experiences. The person often exaggerates or creates symptoms of illnesses to gain attention, sympathy, and/or comfort from medical personnel. In some cases, the person becomes highly knowledgeable about the practice of medicine and can recite and produce symptoms to garner more attention.

Christine Ford received a lot of attention and sympathy when she testified before Congress about her alleged assault by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.  During her testimony, Ford frequently responded not as a victim but as a physician. When asked by Senator Feinstein about the impact the events had on her, Ford responded:

Well, I think that the sequelae of sexual assault varies by person, so for me personally, anxiety, phobia and PTSD-like symptoms are the types of things that I’ve been coping with. So, more specifically, claustrophobia, panic and that type of thing.

When Senator Feinstein asked her how she was sure it was Judge Kavanaugh that assaulted her, Ford responded:

It’s — just basic memory functions. And also just the level of norepinephrine and epinephrine in the brain that, sort of, as you know, encodes — that neurotransmitter encodes memories into the hippocampus. And so, the trauma-related experience, then, is kind of locked there, whereas other details kind of drift.

The press praised her unusual responses by characterizing her as a research psychologist who appeared as her own expert witness. The reason expert witnesses do not testify on their own behalf is that a court and jury rely on expert witnesses to be disinterested parties, who are not biased and have no motive to fabricate an issue. It never occurred to the media to question Ford's self-diagnosis as the result of a trained political operative or the manifestation of a mental disorder. In fact, people who suffer from factitious disorders often research and study symptoms and diseases, so they can better fake them. Ford has made a career out of studying mental illness, writing prolifically about the long-term impacts of trauma, including trauma related to sexual abuse. She would know exactly how to lie about the symptoms and trauma associated with sexual assault.

There is a significant difference between studying trauma and authentically experiencing it. The genuineness of Christine Ford’s choice of language, affectation and disclosures were questionable. Throughout her entire testimony there was no other person, event, detail, or evidence that corroborated her testimony. Her demeanor and body language appeared rehearsed and coached. The most obvious pretense was her speech pattern. During most of her testimony she used a deliberate and calculated childish voice to project vulnerability and helplessness. When responding to specific questions about her trauma, she spoke in the third person in the guise of an esteemed physician. Survivors of sexual assault do not describe their trauma in the third person nor do they have to read from a written script to remember the details.

One week after Ford’s testimony, Nadia Murad, a 25-year-old Iraqi Yazidi woman was awarded the Nobel Peace prize for her campaign to end wartime sexual violence and to free the Yazidi people who were captured by ISIS terrorists. Murad became the voice and face of women who survived sexual violence by the Islamic State after she escaped sexual slavery. At 19 years old she was captured from her village of Kocho. Six of her brothers and her mother were killed in the massacre. Murad was sold as a sex slave and repeatedly gang raped, tortured and beaten until she escaped. Nadia Murad is a true survivor. By definition survivors do not think of themselves as victims. The differences between Ford and Murad is evident in their own words.

The first time Nadia Murad attempted to escape she was caught and was punished by being gang raped by six of her slave owners guards. She was then subjected to even more abuse as she was passed around to other militants. She described the incident in her memoir, The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State:

'Nadia, I told you that if you tried to escape something really bad would happen to you,' … A moment later Morteja, Yahya, Hossam, and the three other guards walked in, staring at me. …As soon as I saw them, I understood what my punishment would be. Morteja was the first to come to the bed. I tried to stop him, but he was too strong. He pushed me down, and there was nothing I could do. After Morteja, another guard raped me. I screamed for my mother and for Khairy, my brother…... My body was covered in filth left by the men ….The bed still smelled like the men who had raped me.

Senator Leahy asked Christine Ford: “What is the strongest memory you have, the strongest memory of the incident, something that you cannot forget?” She answered, “Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter, the laugh — the uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.” Ford’s diagnostic answer of the strongest memory of her alleged sexual assault is being laughed at, while Murad remembers being covered in filth and what her rapists smelled like.

On June 21, 2016, Nadia Murad  testified before members of Congress during the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on Capitol Hill. The comparison between Ford and Murad is striking. Murad is not reading from a script, nor talking in a childish voice. She does not use medical terms or repeatedly refer to herself as a traumatized victim of sexual assault. She remembers every face, name and smell of her very real multiple serial sexual assaults. She holds her head up high and states that she was raped, sold and abused but wants Congress to know that there are hundreds of other victims and that girls as young as nine also suffered that.

Nadia Murad is a true profile in courage and bravery. Christine Ford is a profile in female hysteria. Murad refused to accept the strict social codes that require women to remain silent and bravely spoke publicly about what she had suffered. She did not remain anonymous to avoid personal pain. She inspired the world to collect and preserve evidence that would allow ISIS militants to be brought to trial.

Christine ford inspired mass hysteria resulting in roving mobs of hysterical women stalking senators in the halls of the capitol screeching about rape like some primal scream group therapy session. Ford inspired women to disrupt the confirmation vote by chanting "Shame! Shame!" like the religious zealots in a Game of Thrones episode.

Nadia Murad is a remarkable brave woman, a true survivor, a heroine fighting for justice for both men and women and the future of both women’s and human rights. Christine Ford is a professional victim, a throwback to female hysteria, the poster child for the infantilization of women, a disgrace to every woman who fought for women’s rights and an insult to every victim of sexual violence.


Mark Zuckerberg held a meeting to try and calm Facebook employee outrage after an exec attended the Kavanaugh hearing

Facebook has held a company "town hall" meeting with employees to try and quell outrage after a senior executive attended the recent Senate hearing of US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg were both in attendance.

Last week Joel Kaplan, the company's policy chief,was visibly seated behind Kavanaugh, Trump's embattled nominee for the US Supreme Court, as the judge angrily defended himself against allegations of sexual misconduct by multiple women.

Kaplan and Kavanaugh are friends, having worked together in the Bush administration, and he was there in a personal capacity - but his appearance has enraged employees, and company leadership screwed up its initial response.

On Friday, the company called a meeting in which Zuckerberg, Sandberg, and Kaplan all spoke in an effort to diffuse the internal tension.

According to a report from Axios, Zuckerberg stressed that the importance of supporting people with diverse viewpoints at Facebook. The company has recently been criticised by conservative employees who feel they are unable to speak out about their political beliefs.

Kaplan reportedly said he felt he had an obligation to Kavanaugh, and he acknowledged he should have cleared his attendance with senior leadership before going. He had previously apologised over the uproar while defending his actions, writing to colleagues: "I want to apologise. I recognise this moment is a deeply painful one - internally and externally ... I believe in standing by your friends, especially when times are tough for them."

Some Facebook employees have argued that Kaplan's appearance made them uncomfortable or was "inappropriate." "There is absolutely no such thing as personal capacity when you're a high level manage/executive at the company ... I might feel uncomfortable sharing the workplace with this person now," one employee wrote in a message before Friday's town hall seen by Business Insider.

A Facebook spokesperson declined to comment on the record.


One year after Weinstein scandal, accused male celebrities are attempting comebacks

​​As each new allegation has surfed the wake of the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment scandal, a familiar script has emerged: a headline which names and shames, a social media storm and the sacking, suspension or professional exile of the accused.

A year into that process we are seeing the first signs that some of those are hoping to swim against the tide and find a way back.

The comedian Louis C.K., accused last year of masturbating in front of a number of women, made the first of two appearances at New York's Comedy Cellar in August, the club's owner Noam Dworman telling US media "there can’t be a permanent life sentence on someone who does something wrong".

The New York Times has reported disgraced chef Mario Batali (accused of sexual misconduct by multiple women) is "eyeing his second act". And another media report quoted former Today show host Matt Lauer (who was fired after sexual harrassment allegations) saying he would be "back on TV soon".

It could be argued it's not an impossible feat. After all, bigger stars have in the decades prior fallen from great heights, some with jail sentences, and managed to claw their way back to polite society, their past sins erased from the tabloid record.

New York-based crisis public relations expert Mark Macias says every case is different. "Depending on how bad it is or depending on how big the image is or even depending on where your comeback is taking place," Macias says.

While the cases may differ in degree of offence, golfer Tiger Woods, who was caught in an infidelity scandal in 2009, actor Hugh Grant (caught with a prostitute in 1995), homeware maven Martha Stewart (jailed in 2004 for insider trading), singer Chris Brown (pleaded guilty to assaulting  singer Rihanna in 2009) and Robert Downey jnr (jailed in 1999 on drug charges) have all returned, with varying degrees of success.

In each case what is tested is both our ability to forgive and, thanks to surround-sound social media and shortening memories, forget. "As people, we want to forgive," Macias says. "We just don't want to be swindled. We don't want to feel like, hey, we forgive you, and then you come back and mess up again."

Macias believes that given the right context almost any reputation can be repaired. Even, he argues, Harvey Weinstein. "He's a talented producer, no one doubts that [and] if investors have a project and they want someone who's proven they will go to him," Macias says. "We might not see his name prominently in the credits, and we might not even see his name in the credits, maybe there's just a little quiet backroom deal with the handshake."

Hollywood, like most billion-dollar industries, is simply one of mitigating risk, Macias says. And it is operated in a manner which could be described as survival of the fittest, he adds.

Weinstein was charged with rape and a criminal sexual act in May, and faced a second set of charges in July, including predatory sexual assault. He has pleaded not guilty to the first set of charges.

Writing in the trade newspaper Variety, American culture commentator Caroline Framke argues that individuals like Louis C.K. are not "owed" a return path.

"Wading back into the world to see where he might fit is his prerogative," Framke wrote of Louis C.K. "But it's also our prerogative not to give him the kind of time and consideration that many are insisting he deserves, especially when there are so many others who could use even one of the many chances he’s getting."

Framke says the idea that a "time limit" should be applied, or that an assessment that Louis C.K. had "suffered enough" was ridiculous. "It minimises the damage he caused, the women he targeted taking enormous risks to expose it and the misogynistic rot within the entertainment industry that made it possible at all."

According to Eric Schiffer, a leading US consultant on reputation and brand strategy, successfully navigating the path back depends heavily on the audience which is lining the route. And in this case, Schiffer argues, sex and politics are maybe not so different.

"A career besmirched by #MeToo allegations and/or acts that would trigger outrage will face a similar fate to the way political campaigns are run," he says. "Meaning there will be constituencies that will, under no circumstance, ever give an opportunity for redemption."

Conversely, Schiffer adds, "because of their personal backgrounds, experience, beliefs, and moral standards, there will also be a constituency that will be willing to give an opportunity to someone after a period of time.

"The issue is hard to navigate he says because it "touches on the cross section of, I think, people's individual, personal pain, the identity of women and respect toward women, the male culture that has dominated, and women's and feminists' rights.

"But there are careers that can survive if they find the right market niche and the right groups of individuals that fall in to the category that would be more apt to give them an opportunity," he adds.

What we are seeing, he points out, is Louis C.K., who has not been charged with any criminal offences, attempting to find that pocket. "He knows he's not going to change some people's minds, ever again," Schiffer says. "But the market is large enough to where he can still find an audience, a sub-audience within his prior audience."

Another case, not related to #MeToo but in a way swept up in its aftermath, is that of writer/director Matthew Newton, who left Australia about a decade ago in the wake of alleged domestic violence and assault scandals.

Newton announced a return earlier this year, as the writer/director of a new film, Eve, to star Jessica Chastain, who had lent her voice to the #MeToo movement. Social media judgement was swift: Chastain was accused of hypocrisy and Newton was forced to step down. "For the past six years I have lived a quiet and sober life," Newton said in a statement. "All I can do now is try to [make] living amends and hopefully contribute to the positive change occurring in our industry."

An infinitely more complex case, that of actor Kevin Spacey, who was accused by a number of men of sexual misconduct including making a pass at the then 14-year-old actor Anthony Rapp, has an almost impossible path back, Macias says. "It's not going to be easy for him either but if he can show over time that he's a different man and with a different type of empathy, then that's the first step towards rehabilitating the image," Macias says.

One crucial point is contrition. It's hard to measure publicly but the reaction to attempts by Louis C.K. and Newton to mount comebacks would suggest that in most people's eyes neither has done enough to mitigate the return.

Some US experts suggest a metric similar to the ninth step of the Alcoholics Anonymous 12-step program which talks about making "direct amends" to those people affected by an individual's actions. Others say those charged with sexual offences or domestic assault should make a more substantial contribution by directly engaging with victims.

There are a number of variables, Schiffer says, not least the individuals themselves. "With Louis C.K. his unique advantage is he's a comedian, [he] is not a politician or someone who is running a bureaucratic agency expected to have a pretty conservative set of behaviours."

"But the timing of what he did, when he did it, all of these things go together and form kind of a calculus at this point, as to how the public is going to react and I think it's still very raw," Schiffer adds. "Time will heal. And with some, that are on the spectrum, at the low end of the offensive side, they can, again, find an audience.

"[But] there are some that time won't be their friend; won't matter," Schiffer says. "Kevin Spacey and Weinstein and some of these, I think they are cooked. They're going to die a merciless death as individual brands. And human beings."

Schiffer argues we are still only taking the first steps in a much longer arc of social change. "A year in is relatively small in the totality of all these underlying forces that are driving this, we're still in the early stages," he says.

Perhaps the biggest challenge for the #MeToo movement then is converting accusations into convictions, a difficult task given in many cases the claims have passed the legal statute of limitations or, in some cases where there is little corroborating evidence, are reduced to exchanges of he said/she said or he said/he said.

"I think in the short run, that's true, but in the medium to long run, I think the legal system will play a role in shaping the strength or lack therein on #MeToo in a sustained way," Schiffer says.

"If many of these allegations that are asserted for specific offenders are undermined, legally, I think it undermines the movement [but] conversely, it can also strengthen the movement," he says. "I do think it will have an effect. I don't think it will end the movement, even if there's a tremendous amount of legal victories for these people that are named offenders, but it certainly could affect the momentum."

Ultimately, Schiffer says, the legal system must play its part.

"Because you're talking about assertions that, ultimately, should be fairly adjudicated," he says. "That's not to say that when there's smoke, there's not fire, but in fairness, [in] a democratic system, the legal system should have the ultimate authority."



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


No comments: