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Children compete to create Nazi Party mascot

To Georgia, where middle schoolers have been set a test: dream up a mascot for the Nazi party. WSB-TV Atlanta looks on as sixth graders from Shiloh Middle School in Snellville get to work.  “Directions: The year is 1935 and you have been tasked with creating a mascot to represent the Nazi party at its political rallies,” the task reads. “Think about all the information that you have learned about Hitler and the Nazi party. You will create a COLORFUL illustration of the mascot. Give the mascot a NAME. You will also write an explanation as to why the mascot was chosen to represent the Nazi party.”

 

nazi toy school

‘My Little Genocide’

 

Pass the crayons:

Gwinnett County Schools said learning about Nazism, the use of propaganda and the events that resulted in the Holocaust is part of the sixth grade social studies curriculum.

However, a school district spokesperson said in a statement, “This assignment is not a part of the approved materials provided by our Social Studies department and is not appropriate and the school is addressing the use of this assignment with the teacher.”

Given what you know about Nazis, industrialised murder, the Holocaust and more, get colouring, kids!*

Bonus marks will be awarded for any child stealing another child’s work with extreme prejudice and blaming it on the Jews.

Spotter: DrRandomFactor

Posted: 7th, October 2017 | In: Key Posts, News, Strange But True | Comment


Arek Jozwik, Brexit and the travesty of facts

Sterling work by Brendan O’Neill on Spiked, who ‘fisked‘ the story of Arek Jozwik, the man the papers told us was “murdered for being Polish”. Mr Jozik’s death was the result of violence, true enough – a 16-year-old boy from Harlow, Essex, has been found guilty of manslaughter and jailed for three years.

But to a monocular press, the trial’s facts arrived as inconveniences: it wasn’t murder and it had nothing to do with the victim’s nationality.

Following a row, a 15-year-old British thug punched Mr Jozwik, a 40-year-old Pole, in the head. Jozwik fell. His head hit the pavement. Two days later Arek Jozwik was dead.

But the media narrative was set from the outset. This was foremost a suspected hate crime. Loud voices told readers and listeners that the death of Arek Jozwik was evidence that since Brexit racism was out of control.

Ross Clark noted:

James O’Brien, an LBC radio talk-show host, declared that certain Eurosceptics had ‘blood on their hands’ as did ‘anybody who has suggested speaking Polish in a public place is in any way undesirable’. This was the premise of almost all reporting on the story: a man seemed to have been murdered for being Polish.

Viewers of BBC1’s News at Six were told, ‘the fear is that this was a frenzied racist attack triggered by the Brexit referendum’.

The Indy was arguably the biggest miscreant, positioning the horrible altercation that ended in the death of one man and the imprisonment of another as a return to “white man’s gulch“. The paper mused: “Harlow: Did the great hopes for a post-war new town end with the death of a Polish immigrant in a shopping arcade?” The whole town was in the dock, just as how all of Eltham and its inhabitants were found guilty when Stephen Lawrence was knifed to death in a racist attack. “Harlow in Essex… was once the shiny future of post-war Britain. What went wrong?” asked the paper. What is wrong with Essex man?

The story of what really happened emerged after a trial. It made its way into the Sun, which invited Brendan O’Neill to expose “one of the most shameless misinformation campaigns of recent times”. He wrote:

For certain political and media types, still reeling from the electorate’s rejection of the EU, this was more than just a drunken dispute that ended tragically — it was an act of political evil.

Instantly, and without the benefit of evidence, they labelled Mr Jozwik’s death a Brexit crime…

Jakub Krupa, of the Polish Press Agency, wrote in The Guardian that the killing “exposes the reality of post-referendum racism”.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker also used it to attack Brexit. He told the European Parliament: “We Europeans can never accept Polish workers being harassed, beaten up or even murdered on the streets of Essex.”

Robert Halfon, Tory MP for Harlow, said the killing showed that some people “from the sewers” were using Brexit to “exploit division”.

Meanwhile, the leftish Twittersphere went into meltdown. Tweets included “Welcome to Brexit Britain”, “(Jozwik was) murdered for being Polish”, and “This is what was encouraged by Farage, Johnson, Cameron.”

Good stuff.

Or as the Sun put it previously:

 

 

 

 

 

And:

 

 

And:

Anti-Brexit boors have gone silent over the killing of Polish man Arek Jozwik..

A HORRIBLE night in ­Harlow, Essex, a little over a year ago. A drunken Polish bloke gets into an argument with a 15-year-old black kid. He pushes him and calls him “n*****”. The kid responds with a single punch.

The convicted teenager is believed to be white.

Such are the facts in the trusty mainstream media.

Posted: 6th, October 2017 | In: Key Posts, News, Tabloids | Comment


After Las Vegas: only candles, thoughts and prayers can stop another massacre

After the horror in Las Vegas, will anything happen? Something must after America’s worst mass-shooting. The sane thing would be to debate gun control and why it’s ok for someone to own an arsenal of high-powered weapons. But amid the candles, prayers and hashtags – and the flurry of guessing about why Stephen Paddock executed scores of innocent music fans out for a good night – nothing gets done. Second Amendment freedoms remain unchanged in law. You can buy a machine gun in the USA and keep it shiny in the hope that when someone aims their machine gun at you, you can shoot back.

The newspapers are full of the Las Vegas bloodbath. All mention Stephen Paddock, the 64-year-old killer, in the opening lines. Police and the FBI are looking for Paddock’s motive. There are many being spouted: he is a jihadi; a white supremacist; an anti-Trump activist; a pro-Trump gun-nut; a terrorist; a white male; and so on. Reuters hears an official says that Paddock had a “history of psychological problems”. Paddock’s father, Benjamin Hoskins Paddock, was a “psychopathic serial bank robber” who was once on the FBI’s most wanted list between 1969 and 1977.

 

 

Donald Trump says it was an “act of pure evil”, a phrase that invokes God and invites us to think the Devil did it. Is that going to be Stephen Paddock’s excuse? Is he going to become a victim of some kind of hereditary condition and demonic possession?

“WHY DID HE FLIP?” asks the Mirror over two pages. The answer can be summed up in one word: “Dunno.” But the Mirror, as with so much media, analyses the dead murderer’s brain. Did he “inherit his criminal father’s mental illness and ruthless passion for violence”? The Mail wonders: “Did gambling losses turn law-abiding ex-accountant into mass killer?” The Sun leads with news that Paddock was “thought” to have gambling debts.

We like a clean narrative: man with money worries / troubled upbringing / religious devotion murders scores of people. But none of it sheds any light on the horror. It just offers Paddock an out. He deserves none. The Las Vegas Police Department’s Sheriff Joe Lombardo is honest: “I can’t get into the mind of a psychopath.”

The only sense would be to look at how mass shootings can be prevented. Better mental health provision? More exorcisms? Locking up children of the criminally deranged? Stopping a man on a mission to kill isn’t easy if you value freedom. How about stricter rules on who gets machine guns and bullets? The US gun lobby won’t budge. Trump needs to find a way to keep the US constitution intact – the freedom and equality it enshrines in law – and stop manics getting their hands on high-velocity killing machines.

The next slaughter won’t be stopped by tea-lights and prayers.

 

Posted: 3rd, October 2017 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment


After Las Vegas: everyone knows why Stephen Paddock did it

Why did Mesquite, Nevada, man Stephen Paddock shoot dead more than 50 people and wound 400 more when he opened fire on a country music festival in Las Vegas? Police “believe” he committed suicide before they raided his room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel. It was from there that he fired at the crowd below, allegedly.

 

Stephen paddock las vegas

 

We might never know why he did it, if he did it and if he did it alone – 10 weapons were found in his room, say police. So can anyone with an agenda subscribe their bigotry to this horror?

ISIS says they know why Paddock did it. A statement published by the group’s Amaq propaganda agency says: “The Las Vegas attacker is a soldier of the Islamic State in response to calls to target coalition countries.” They claim Stephen Paddock “converted to Islam several months ago”.

The Daily Mail endorses that message:

 

 

Eric Paddock, the suspect’ brother, is quoted in the Orlando Sentinel:

“We are completely dumbfounded. We can’t understand what happened. We have absolutely no idea whatsoever. I can’t imagine. When you guys find out why this happened, let us know. I have no idea whatsoever.”

Tariq Nasheed says it’s to do with white supremacy.

 

Tariq Nasheed stephen paddock

 

Paddock had been travelling with Marilou Danley, who is not a suspect. The Australian said Danley was “an Australian passport holder, possibly of Indonesian descent, but officials there have not confirmed her nationality”. White supremacist friendly with Indonesian women attacks country music festival. Really? Danley relocated to the United States 20 years ago, according to one of her former neighbours who said she is originally from the Philippines, The Herald Sun reported.

Was it terrorism? “There is motiving factors associated with terrorism other than a distraught person just intending to cause mass casualty. Before we label with that it will be a matter of process,” says Sheriff Joseph Lombardo.”We believe it’s a solo actor. A lone wolf,” Lombardo added.

Is there something about his name?

 

What about Donald Trump? Armchair Detective On Twitter tabs the side of his nose and gives us the side eye:

 

Paddock hated Trump! right?

stephen paddock donald trump

 

 

How about Stephen Paddock’s whiteness?

stephen paddock white

 

Terror attacks are used to further a cause. What Paddock’s was Charles Clymer doesn’t say. But when it comes to being murdered, he is producing a league table. Ban white guys, says Charles!

Can we ban God, who was angry at Trump.

 

 

The dead are victims of white privilege:

 

Deborah Schurman-Kauflin says he was a killer:

Too many people are at a loss to understand such killings. They can’t comprehend the deep pitted hatred that fills the black hearts of these multiple murderers. A shooting or mass event shocks the public which doesn’t spend its time dreaming of murder. However these killers do just that. Every waking moment is focused on their deviant desires. By rote, they practice over and over in their minds how they will destroy as much life as possible. They live and breathe an inevitable revenge. Fueled by continuous anger, they prepare for their destiny. That is how they see it. Every mass killer I interviewed said they always knew they would kill. In a way it is a self fulfilling prophecy.

Whatever method they choose to execute their plan, they practice ad nauseum. They go to the location they want to attack. Once there, they watch. They want to memorize the patterns of the people at the location. They want to see who is there and where they go. What is normal for this area? Yes, killers profile too. They need those patterns so they can predict the behavior of their targets. When they can anticipate how a victim will react, they can cut off escape routes.

Weapons are obtained, and very often, they tell someone of their goal. Though they are deadly serious, the threat is blown off. People have a hard time believing that this person could do such a thing. Or, the person is too frightened to say a word. Thus, the behavior and words do not get reported. And the plan continues.

 

 

More to follow…

Posted: 2nd, October 2017 | In: Key Posts, News | Comments (3)


3 dead in Marseilles: ‘Allahu Akbar’ ad infinitum

Three people are dead at Marseilles’ Saint-Charles train station in France. Police shot one dead after he’d murdered the other two. The Guardian says the murderer was a “man”, an “assailant” armed with a knife, a “knifeman”. And that’s all.

“Two victims have been stabbed to death,” says regional police chief, Olivier de Mazieres on AFP.

But a clue to what the “man” might have been and why he did it comes via an unnamed French official, who tells France’s Le Monde newspaper that the killer yelled “Allahu Akbar” as he stabbed two women to death.

How relevant is that chant? It’s very relevant, reasons the Daily Mail, which unlike the BBC and Guardian makes the familiar war cry of militant Islam central to the story. “Two passengers are killed as attacker shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ slits a woman’s throat with a butcher’s knife and stabs another at Marseille station before soldiers shoot him dead,” announces the headline.

The Mail mentions “Islamist radicals” in its story. The Guardian makes no mention of Islam whatsoever in its. Why is there such a clear difference in reporting? Why does one publication make Islam a key part of the narrative, whilst another ignores it entirely? I’d hazard a guess that it’s something to do with the uncertain, fearful censorious times we live in. Ever watchful of triggering the slack-jawed mob, the simplest fact is redacted from reports lest it foment a race riot. With free speech and free expression stymied, what should be objective – simply stating the facts – becomes confrontational and daring. Most worryingly, it leaves the facts to actual bigots who adopt the role of rebels and present themselves as brave and knowing sources of ‘truth’.

As for the police, well, the soldiers who shot the killer dead are part of Operation Sentinelle, the military operation launched after Islamists massacred so many at Charlie Hebdo magazine and a Jewish supermarket in Paris in January 2015.

Good the soldiers were there, then.

Aside from a conversation on armed police on the streets this attack invites, is there also a conversation to be had about Islamist violence? Since 2015, more than 230 people in France have been killed in Islamist attacks. Discuss.

Posted: 1st, October 2017 | In: Broadsheets, News, Tabloids | Comment


Brexit poll: 88% of young voters want Britain to quit the EU?

Is Brexit a disaster? We’re not sure what it entails in detail, but that vote was glorious. And a new poll tells us that far from being fans of a second referendum and voting until we deliver ‘the right’ answer, most of us rather enjoy democracy and the chance it’s given the country to try something different:

 

brexit poll

 

The stand-out figure is the 12% of 18- to 24-year-olds who think the country should press on and quit the European Union. That figure is topped by the 92% of the working class who want Brexit. Jeebus – 70% of Remainers want the country to get on with it.

So let’s not stop Brexit. Let’s not heed the demands of Labour MPs who demand a second referendum and think us all duped for voting for Brexit in the first place. They don’t want democracy; they want to stymie it.

The full survey for the Times went like this:

 

brexit

 

Such are the facts.

 

Posted: 1st, October 2017 | In: News, Politicians | Comment (1)


No anti-Semitism in Labour – just calls for a ‘final solution’

Good job there’s no anti-Semitism in Labour or else we’d think Labour Friends of Palestine and the Middle East (LFPME) seeking of a “final solution” ugly.

 

labour final solution

 

 

Having been alerted that Nazis were fond of just that term, and forced to why they used it in regard to the world’s only Jewish state, the group Labour Friends of Palestine and the Middle East (LFPME) has apologised for its “extremely poor choice of words”.

They then added a sympathetic backstory:

“Due to the preparations for the Party conference, we were unable to effectively check every piece of content being published on our page.

“While the use of the phrase in this context was genuine error we would like to sincerely apologise for the hurt it has caused and will endevour [sic] to ensure such errors do not occur in the future.”

Look out for Labour debating “the Jewish question” at a meeting near you.

Posted: 1st, October 2017 | In: News, Politicians | Comment


Words are bad: Australians warned not to offend weak-minded women at work

The Diversity Council of Australia (DCA) wants to warn you about words. The DCA is an “independent not-for-profit peak body leading diversity and inclusion in the workplace”. The DCA are guns for hire. They will deliver a 2 hour talk at your organisation “by experienced DCA staff and consultants”. Does it cost? Yes:

Fees
$2,500 per session for DCA members.
$3,600 per session for non-members.

For small businesses of – get this – as low as one employer (can you offend yourself?) membership is $1,645 a year.

You will be told that using words like “abo”, “retard”, “poofter”, “fag”, “dyke” and “so gay” can be upsetting. Who knew? Also saying “hi, girl’ or “hi guys” is taboo.

“We want to get people thinking about the language they use in the workplace and whether it’s inclusive or excludes people,”says DCA’s CEO Lisa Annese. She offers an example. “A really good test is reversing the gender,” says Annese. “Would you walk into a mixed gender group and say ‘Hello ladies’ or ‘Hello girls’? No, because men would be offended. I used to use the word guys. I have both genders in my team and I out of respect for everyone, I think it’s much better if I say ‘Hi team’ as it includes everyone. It’s a small change.”

Women are so weak and easily offended that they need protecting from hearing the word “guys”. What an understanding view of women that is. These delicate types need safer spaces to work in. And who hasn’t met a modern Aussie male intimated by being called a ‘lady’? Well done DCA!

And “mum” is out, too. You should also avoid “drudge”, “slave” or “Filipino”, if you work in one of the smarter areas:

 

Posted: 1st, October 2017 | In: Money, News | Comment


Media bias: Bournemouth robbed as Leicester’s Simpson tucks his hands onto his arms

When Bournemouth hosted Leicester City in the Premier League, the Cherries were hard down by when a clear handball by the Foxes’ Danny Simpson in his own area went unpunished.

The official Leicester FC website reports on that early goalmouth action:

Defoe connects with a King cross and turns his effort onto the underneath of the bar. Pugh’s follow up is deflected wide and City clear the corner.

No word on how the shot was deflected wide.

Leicester says the game’s “major moment” was Shinji Okazaki missing a good chance –  not the handball.

Over on the Bournemouth FC website, it’s a different story:

Within three minutes there was high drama. Joshua King’s low cross was directed onto the crossbar by Defoe, and as the ball rattled loose Marc Pugh’s close-range shot was deflected wide by the hand of Danny Simpson.
Pugh’s shouts for a penalty were sustained, but referee Graham Scott was unmoved in signalling for just a corner.

Let’s see if a local newspaper can give us the facts?

The Leicester Mercury reports:

The tone was set in the third minute when a sweeping move carved City open and Jermaine Defoe struck the underside of the bar form close range and Marc Pugh struck Danny Simpson’s arm with the follow-up.

As Simpson nurses his arm and #pray4Danny trends in Leicester, we see what the BBC made of it:

The home side dominated the game and will feel they should have had an early penalty when Leicester defender Danny Simpson appeared to handle inside the box.

Can you handle something with your arm? No. The Times explains:

Early on, Defoe exchanged passes with the impressive Josh King whose low cross was turned against the bar by the England striker. Marc Pugh looked certain to score from the rebound, but his effort was deflected wide by the palm of Danny Simpson.

Handball, then. Bournemouth were robbed. But not if you get your news from Leicester, in which case we wish Danny Simpson well.

Posted: 30th, September 2017 | In: Back pages, News, Sports | Comment (1)


Ben Stokes reminds the country that people still play cricket

England cricketer Ben Stokes has been making news ever since he was arrested following a bout of alleged fisticuffs with Ryan Hale, a former soldier who served in Afghanistan, on a night out in Bristol.

Everything about Stoke’s life to date is being examined for signs of mania. He wore comfi-Slax and a jumper for his interview for the England captaincy; the winner, Joe Root, wore a suit and tie, and most likely tucked his vest into his Y-fronts. He did an impression of Katie Price’s disabled son Harvey, which someone filmed. In 2011, Stokes was arrested and cautioned for obstructing the police. He’s ginger. He was rusticated from a tour of Australia for boozing. He achieved four speeding offences in one month.

 

 

The big shock, of course, is that a cricket should be on the front pages at all. Cricket usually attracts less media attention than Wayne Rooney’s urine; it’s f7 on the keyboard when there’s no football on. And that’s the international stuff. Cricket at country level has less pull than Ann Widdecombe in a moist tent.

 

 

The MCC, ECB and all other cricket boards should write a letter to Stokes thanking him for making cricketers and cricket worthy of our attention. Cricket needs exposure even more than the aforementioned Katie Price and her Jordans.

As for Stokes, a player who often eschews the cloying professionalism in favour of the amateur spirit, we,, he should save his aggression for the match.

 

Posted: 30th, September 2017 | In: News, Sports | Comment


Arsenal riot, stroll and stumble at BATE Borisov

Arsenal ran out pretty easy winners in their Europa League match against BATE Borisov, winning 4-2, having been 3-0 up after 25 minutes. Arsenal are the first team to beat Bate on their own patch in European competition since Barcelona defeated them in 2015 – a run of seven games.

What do the newspapers have to say about the match?

EASY!

The Daily Mail calls it an “Arsenal stroll”. The Sun agrees that it was a “stroll”. The Gunners, boasting a squad of nine players aged 20 or younger, “ran riot”. The Express saw Arsenal “picking apart the BATE defence at will”. The Daily Star says it was “stunning stuff from Arsenal”.

HARD!

The Daily Mirror says it “wasn’t an easy ride” for the Gunners in Belarus.

And the Times:

Times Arsenal

 

One man’s stroll is another reporter’s stumble.

Such are the facts.

 

 

 

Posted: 29th, September 2017 | In: Arsenal, Back pages, Broadsheets, News, Sports, Tabloids | Comment


Madeleine McCann: police get more cash for another 6 months of looking

Madeleine McCann news watch – a look at reporting on the missing child. There is “new hope” in the “Maddie hunt” says the Daily Express. Is hope born of new clues? (Any clues?) New evidence? (Any evidence?) No. It’s just that police have been given an extra £154,000 to keep investigating what happened to the child who vanished on a family holiday in May 2007. This, says the paper, is a “massive boost”.

But is it, really? It keeps the investigation going, yes, but unless we know on what it will be spent and if any investment will answer to the question ‘What happened?’ it’s pretty meaningless. What value £154,000 when the Metropolitan Police’s Operation Grange has cost over £11million? It’s less a massive boost than a top-up deal.

The story continues on page 9. We see a the familiar photo of Madeleine McCann in her Everton kit. And we see a picture of her parents, Gerry and Kate McCann. We hear Clarence Mitchell, the McCanns’ spokesman, say his clients are “extremely thankful to the Home Office and Scotland Yard for continued funding”. The McCanns are “encouraged that there remains work to be done that requires the extra budget,” he says. What work that is, we’re not told. Perhaps wrapping up a large police operation caries its own costs?

The story is all about the money because the changing number is the only new fact. The single thread story remains just that: child vanishes.

The Star carries the same story on its page 4, sticking to that bald fact and summing up the entire case in a caption that says “Missing: Madeleine”.

But the Mirror thinks the news of “MADDIE COPS” being “GIVEN ONE LAST CHANCE” worthy of its front page. The paper reasons that if police “fail” to find “fresh leads” the probe “could be axed”. On page 5, readers learn that £154,000 is enough for fur police to work full time on the case for 6 months.

Unless they find out what happened sooner, of course…

 

 

Posted: 29th, September 2017 | In: Madeleine McCann, News, Tabloids | Comment


Manchester City star Aguero fractures rib in car accident

Manchester City’s Argentinean star Sergio Aguero has been injured in a car accident in Amsterdam. The 29-year-old fractured a rib when the taxi he was taking to the airport struck a lamp post. Aguero was in Holland to watch a concert by Colombian singer Maluma.

Reports in Argentina estimate Aguero will be out of action “for at least three months”, noting that the “seat belt saved his life”. The Sun calls it a “horror smash” and says he “cheated death”.
 

 

It could have been worse, then. We wish Aguero well, of course. But look out for fans of rival clubs being delighted.
 


 

And let’s not forget the jokes:
 

 

But don’t worry City:

 

Ooer.

Posted: 29th, September 2017 | In: Manchester City, News, Sports | Comment


Lavinia Woodward’s case tells us nothing about race but it might expose the myth of gender equality

Afua Hirsch has something to say about Lavinia Woodward, the troubled woman guilty of attacking her boyfriend. For the crime of unlawful wounding Woodward was sentenced to 10 months’ imprisonment suspended for 18 months. Much of the narrative has focused on her intellect, which the judge praised. He told her “normally it would attract a custodial sentence, whether it is immediate or suspended”. Judge Pringle praised her “extraordinary talent” for learning and medicine – Woodward wants to be a heart surgeon –  and listed “mitigating factors” in arriving at his conclusion that a period in prison would be the wrong sentence.

 

 

The Press disagreed, calling it “TOFF JUSICE” (The Sun) and reworking the judge’s comments into “Oxford student branded ‘too clever to be jailed'” (Mirror). Woodward became a talking point. So here’s Hirsch to tell Guardian readers: “The Lavinia Woodward case exposes equality before the law as a myth.”

It does? She describes Woodward as “white, and privileged”. I’d add ‘blonde’. It is surely Woodward’s blondeness that made her case front-page news.

Hirsch adds: “At the time of her attack, she was studying medicine at Christ Church college, Oxford. She had attended a prestigious international school. She could afford an excellent lawyer. She was able to demonstrate – in a language the judiciary can easily understand – her potential future contribution to society.”

Hirsch then reviews all the facts – although the judge’s full comments have not been published – adding maybe a dash of her own prejudice to the matter. “She is as deserving of a prison sentence as the young black men so often reported as being involved in stabbings,” she writes, as if all stabbings are of equal damage and all cases easily comparable.

But if it’s inconsistency we’re seeking, the key word might not be ‘white’. It might be ‘she’. In the 2013 Government report “Statistics on Women and the Criminal Justice System – A Ministry of Justice publication under Section 95 of the Criminal Justice Act 1991” we read more.

Women go to prison less often than men:

 

 

That the crime was Woodward’s first was noted by the judge, who told her: “There are many mitigating features in your case. Principally, at the age of 24 you have no previous convictions of any nature whatsoever.”

The report states:

Offending histories: Female offenders were less likely than male offenders to have any previous cautions or convictions throughout the ten years from 2003 to 2013, with a third of females and only a fifth of males being first-time offenders in 2013.

Is Woodward likely to repeat her crime?

In the most recent period (2012), males (both adults and juveniles) re-offended at a higher rate than females (27.7% compared to 18.5%), and this has not changed over the past ten years.

 

 

And what about those mitigating factors? The judge told Woodward:

“There are many mitigating features in your case. Principally, at the age of 24 you have no previous convictions of any nature whatsoever. Secondly, I find that you were genuinely remorseful following this event and, indeed, it was against your bail conditions, you contacted your partner to fully confess your guilt and your deep sorrow for what happened.

“Thirdly, whilst you are a clearly highly-intelligent individual, you had an immaturity about you which was not commensurate for someone of your age. Fourthly, as the reports from the experts make clear, you suffer from an emotionally-unstable personality disorder, a severe eating disorder and alcohol drug dependence.

“Finally, and most significantly, you have demonstrated over the last nine months that you are determined to rid yourself of your alcohol and drug addiction and have undergone extensive treatment including counselling to address the many issues that you face. In particular, you have demonstrated to me since I adjourned this matter in May a strong and unwavering determination to do so despite the enormous pressure under which you were put and which has been referred to me by your counsel.”

Says the Government:

A case with many aggravating factors is dealt with more severely than a case with a few aggravating factors. These offenders are more likely to be sent to prison and more likely to be sent there for longer. Conversely, offenders with many mitigating factors taken into account in their case are less likely to be sent to prison.

If you satisfy the court that your sorry, well done:

 

 

 

And:

The type of sentence outcome given at court differs between male and female offenders and has also changed over time, due largely to the greater use of SSOs since 2005 when they became more readily available under the Criminal Justice Act 2003. As with the wider trend for all indictable offences (highlighted in the defendants’ chapter) there was also a decline in the proportion of community sentences over the time period.

The most common disposal given to male offenders across each of the four specified violence offences is now an immediate custodial sentence, with the proportion increasing over the last ten years for ABH and remaining stable for the other offences. By contrast the type of sentence outcome given to female offenders has differed for each of these four offences. In 2013, the most common disposal given for the offences of ABH and cruelty to or neglect of children was a community sentence, whilst for GBH without intent it was a SSO and for breach of a restraining order it came under the otherwise dealt with category.

Across each of these four offences, male offenders were around twice as likely to be given an immediate custodial sentence than female offenders. By contrast, a greater proportion of female offenders received less severe sentence outcomes.

Money matters, of course. But to argue that Lavinia Woodward’s case typifies the “racial inequality at the core of our justice system” is wrong. But there might be an argument to be made around gender…

Posted: 28th, September 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Key Posts, News | Comment


RIP Hugh Hefner: breaker of taboos

 

RIP Hugh Hefner (1926-2017), the man who made your feel less guilty about looking at nudes. Hefner was the man who gave us the enjoiner: “I only buy it for the articles.” And, boy, were those stories good. So good that the protectors of our minds and bodies branded Playboy magazine “obscene”. We lapped it up. And in the 1960s Hefner moved into teasing punters with actual flesh and satin-eared women in Playboy clubs. Punters drank in the wit of black comics Dick Gregory and Jewish enemy-of-the-state Lenny Bruce, a man Hefner could not stand to watch “persecuted or prosecuted for his words and his ideas”,  proving that when it came to entertainment and escapism, segregation, whether born of race, gender or rudeness, is for losers.

This was social revolution.“

Hefner was the first publisher to see that the sky would not fall and mothers would not march if he published bare bosoms; he realised that the old taboos were going,” Time magazine said in a 1967 cover story. “He took the old-fashioned, shame-thumbed girlie magazines, stripped off the plain wrapper, added gloss, class and culture. It proved to be a sure-fire formula.”

The Hollywood Reporter:

Hefner became the unofficial spokesman for the sexual revolution that permeated the 1960s and ’70s and he was both lauded and criticized by feminists of the era, with some accusing him of objectifying women while others said he liberated and empowered them. During a conversation with Gloria Steinem in 1970, Hefner dismissed feminism as “foolishness,” and Steinem told him: “What Playboy doesn’t know about women could fill a book … There are times when a woman reading a Playboy feels a little like a Jew reading a Nazi manual.”

Hefner was a staunch supporter of abortion – including helping to finance the landmark Rowe v. Wade decision in 1973 — and more recently was an outspoken advocate of same-sex marriage, and his dedication to such issues (along with his distribution of pornography) made him a pariah in some religious circles. “By associating sex with sin, we have produced a society so guilt-ridden that it is almost impossible to view the subject objectively,” he wrote in 1963 in one of his many broadsides aimed at Christian leaders.

Cheers, Hef.

Image:  Hugh Hefner (April 9, 1926 – September 27, 2017) at his kitchen table working on the first issue of Playboy (1953)

Posted: 28th, September 2017 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News | Comment


RIP Mehmet Aksoy: the British filmmaker who showed us the Kurds fight against ISIS

British filmmaker Mehmet Aksoy has been killed. The 32-year-old Londoner of Kurdish descent went to Syria in June, joining the Kurdish militant group, the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), and filming its battles against ISIS.

 

Mehmet Aksoy

 

The Kurds deserve our support. Betrayed by the West after World War 1, the West now arms them in the fight against ISIS. The Kurds are fighting to stop ISIS spreading further into the Middle East. If the Kurds win, they surely deserve the autonomous region they crave.

Posted: 27th, September 2017 | In: News | Comment (1)


Labour is still trying to work out when it’s ok to hate Jews

Labour doesn’t much mind the rampant anti-Semitism in its ranks. Jeremy Corbyn says anti-Semitism is not “a huge problem” within the party. Union leader and Corbyn backer Len McCluskey says accusations of anti-Semitism are “mood music… created by people trying to undermine Jeremy Corbyn”. And there’s dear Ken Livingstone, who says: “Some people have made offensive comments, it doesn’t mean they’re inherently anti-Semitic and hate Jews. They just go over the top when they criticise Israel.”

And there isn’t any Jew hatred. Well, not that Labour can find. The party was given a clean bill of health by crack racist-spotter Shami Chakrabarti, who despite a pathological fear of men from Essex (none of which are Jews, natch.), was able to engage in a full and far-reaching investigation hat went a bit like this:

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

In utterly unrelated news, the Leader of the Labour party nominated Shami Chakrabarti for a peerage. She is now Dame Shami.

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

There is no antisemitism in the Labour Party.

Time and time again we are alerted to the hideous anti-Jew hatred that for years has been allowed to thrive on the Left and now has wormed its way into Labour’s heart. Stephen Pollard tells Daily Express readers that Labour is now run by “thugs”. Labour activists at the party’s conference in Brighton demand that the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) be “expelled” and leaflets compare Israel and Jews to Nazis, a nasty, snide slight that presents Jews as unworthy of the Holocaust and deserving of it, making the millions of Jewish victims of Nazi murder, rape and torture complicit in their own deaths. It’s hideous and deliberately cruel.

John Cryer, Labour MP for Leyton and Wanstead and chairman of the Parliamentary Labour Party, told a meeting at the conference: “I have seen some of the tweets from paid up Labour Party members and I am not kidding you, it makes your hair stand up.” He says attitudes to Jews in Labour ranks are “redolent of the 1930s”.

The Daily Mail leads with the story of how anti-Semitism has been allowed to fester and grow in Labour. The paper lists examples of the kind of Jew hatred Labour acquiesces to. Over two pages, the Mail tells Labour: “ROOT OUT YOUR RACISTS!” But in the Daily Mirror, the story appears in one slim, short column on page 10 (the left-hand page). “Anti-semitic views face a crackdown,” says the headline. “Labour has backed new powers to stamp out anti-Semitism in the party.” Labour members voted to “back a tightening of rules against racism”.

Nasty. No, not just the bigots – the Press using the horror of anti-Semitism to damage Jeremy Corbyn and cheer moves to turn being an anti-Semite into an act of rule-bashing rebellion. It’s not a light matter to hate Jews. History teaches us that. Do we sincerely believe everyone aghast and agog at anti-Semitism is a friend of the Jews, a champion of Jewish rights? Do we not suspect that some of the shock and horror is born of a desire to bash Labour? What should be free, frank and open debate about a poison that places people in fear of their lives for the ‘crime’ of being a Jew or being a Zionist (ie thinking Israel has a right to exist) becomes a witch-hunt.

Labour has a problem with Jews. That much is clear. And that it’s not all that bothered by anti-Semitism is also clear. Why should it be? Not all that many Jews live in the UK, so their vote is relatively unimportant. Labour has no need to woo the Jewish vote. Ultimately, Labour is representative of its members, who haven’t been deterred by the racism. In fact, Labour membership has grown in recent years. So expect more of the same, then.

Posted: 27th, September 2017 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment


Billionaire donates £200m to investigate ‘baloney’ and spread bad science

leeches homeopathy Henry Samueli

 

Mega-rich Henry Samueli, a fan of “integrative medicine” (homeopathy) has donated – get this – 200m to UC Irvine. “The human body is a very complex and highly interconnected system. Therefore our healthcare needs to be looked at through a more holistic lens,” opines Samueli, who owns the Anaheim Ducks. “Our genetics, our surrounding environment, our nutrition, our physical activity and our mental state all play critical roles in our well-being.”

As someone who has been stricken by serious illness, I can says that I’m going with the science and the big machines over the pseudoscience, personal prejudice, propaganda, faith-based medicine guff that denies human progress in chemistry and physics.

Rebecca Watson is scathing:

Now they’ve given millions to UC Irvine, a public university, to set up a school for baloney….I mean “alternative medicine.” It’ll be called the “College of Health Sciences,” misusing at least three words in a four-word name, which is really pretty impressive.

I read about all this in a positively glowing article in the LA Times, which didn’t seek out a single voice to disagree with the idea that a college of baloney is a brilliant idea. The LA Times didn’t even consult the LA Times of six months ago, where they reported on another woman who took aconite as a remedy. That woman was hospitalized for weeks and then she died, because aconite is a poison. Susan’s aconite product must have been real homeopathy, meaning that it was just sugar water and there wasn’t actually any aconite in it at all. Otherwise, instead of getting better naturally from her cold she also would have fucking died, and then nobody would be giving millions of dollars to a public university to spread dangerous baloney.

As they say in Anaheim: Quack!

 

 

Spotter: BB

Posted: 27th, September 2017 | In: Money, News | Comment


Arsenal balls: Manchester United park the bus and Chelsea never lose

Arsenal are on the up. With four wins and one draw from their past five games, and with just one goal conceded in that period, Arsene Wenger’s team have recovered from their early season defeats to Stoke (in which they were unlucky and robbed by poor refereeing) and Liverpool (where they got the thrashing their abject performance deserved). It also behoves a mention to note that following Arsenal’s 2-0 win over a spark West Bromwich Albion, the Gunners have won eight consecutive home games in the Premier League.

But in the Sun, the forecast at The Emirates remains grim. Therein they are “FALTERING Arsenal”. You “could not disguise just how far the Gunners are falling behind their major rivals. While City, United and Chelsea are brushing opponents aside with contemptuous ease, Arsene Wenger’s team are labouring to see off even the most unambitious of rivals.”

 

Arsenal table

Arsenal “far behind” at one point away from third sport

 

Arsenal drew 0-0 at Chelsea in a game they could well have won, hitting the post and missing an open goal from inside six yards. And that’s the same Chelsea who lost at home to the mighty Burnley. Manchester City were flukey away to Bournemouth, scoring a very late goal courtesy of Raheem Sterling’s boot and a massive deflection, and drew 1-1 with Everton. Manchester United have drawn 2-2 with Stoke, and last weekend beat Southampton 0-1. Of that match the Sun’s sister paper, the Times, called United’s performance “strangely lethargic”. Adding:

Given the lead by Lukaku, United went into abject retreat in the second half when Southampton had the bulk of possession and most of the chances. At the final whistle, United had six defenders on the pitch, while the home side brought on two attackers, a fair reflection of the balance of power.

Manchester United parked the bus. So much for “brushing aside opponents with contemptuous ease”. United and City have yet to play any of their title rivals.

And what of West Bromwich Albion being unambitious? The Evening Standard reports:

Pulis had employed a more ambitious West Brom lineup than might have been expected, with Hal Robson-Kanu and Rodriguez making for a mobile, high-pressing front two.

It’s hardly perfect at Arsenal, but to ignore the facts and stick to a bogus narrative is poor reporting.

Such are the facts.

Posted: 26th, September 2017 | In: Arsenal, Back pages, Chelsea, Manchester City, manchester united, News, Tabloids | Comment


Police use story of climbers stuck on Scafell Pike to attack cannabis users

scafell pike stoned rescue

 

Four walkers from Manchester got stuck on England’s highest mountain last weekend because they were too goofed to walk back down, says the Guardian. Stoned on the Scafell Pike’s 3,210-foot “peak”, the men summoned help. Cumbria Police went on Twitter to lament:

 

 

 

But that’s not quite true. Only one of the men had smoked weed, but all had been drinking. Richard Warren, of Wasdale Mountain Rescue Team, never mentioned police involvement when he told the North West Evening Mail: “As a group, they were emotionally feeling very concerned. Half of them had waterproofs. They were totally unprepared for what they had got themselves into. When one of them got unwell because of the substance they had taken, it added further worry.” The paper notes: “It is understood the men had been drinking and one of them had taken cannabis.”

 

 

 

But writing on Facebook, a police spokesperson doesn’t mention the booze:

“Persons phoning Cumbria Police because they are stuck on a mountain, after taking cannabis. Now having to deploy M’tain Rescue, Air support and Ambulance to rescue them. Words fail us…..”

A helicopter was not deployed. But one was placed on standby. Esquire reports:

Police worked with the Wasdale mountain rescue team to help bring the men down to safety at 9.45pm, with police adding in a second post on their Facebook page: “Persons rescued by MRT, after becoming incapable of walking off mountain due to cannabis use. MRT volunteers putting themselves at risk to prevent harm.”

Were police called?

Someone using the Twitter name “Samuel Coleridge” says he was one of the rescued men. He tells ITV:

“At the time of making the call we were panicking, cold, wet and hungry and knew if it went dark it was going to be hard getting down.

“I can’t remember exactly how the emergency call went, but I did tell them it was only one of the four of us who had collapsed and was out cold and that we had been drinking and that he had smoked some cannabis.

“My biggest concern now is that our names could be leaked, as we’re all working individuals and I wouldn’t want to risk that. Also most of our families have put two and two together which has caused plenty of headaches…

“There wasn’t a huge costly rescue operation launched as reported by the police. They made out a helicopter, police officers and ambulances were used, but there were none. The only truth was mountain rescue were alerted and we met them near Boot not on the mountain.

“Of course we are sorry for taking up the time of the mountain rescue team. We carried him down as far as we could and only called as a last resort. We fully appreciated their help and support, because we mentioned cannabis on the emergency call the whole situation was blown way out of proportion.”

But if you pick the facts to present it as a police operation mopping up after doped dopes so much the better…

Posted: 26th, September 2017 | In: News, Strange But True | Comment


Lavinia Woodward’s mitigating factors: she’s not black, male and poor

Lavinia Woodward, 24, has been in court for assaulting her boyfriend – she stabbed him in the leg with a bread knife after throwing a laptop, a glass and a jam jar at him. Should she go to prison? “No!” rules judge Ian Pringle, who reasons that because Woodward is bright and wants to be surgeon, a stint in choky might damage her career. You and anyone sane might baulk at being treated by a surgeon with a history of stabbing people with kitchen equipment – taking work home with her? – who suffers from an emotionally-unstable personality disorder, a severe eating disorder, and alcohol and drug addiction.

Might it be that the victim, one Thomas Fairclough, a Cambridge graduate Woodward had met on the dating app Tinder, took one for the team?

 

lavinia woodward

She’s presented as someone we should envy – the blonde ‘toff’ laughing in the face of justice. That’s ugly. She seems far from happy.

 

But Woodward remains at large. Judge Pringle thinks she’s possessed of an “extraordinary talent”. Dwayne from the council estate can go to prison for his crimes, on account of being normal or even blow par; but Lavinia was really terribly good at school so when she gets into drugs and knife crime, it’s all a dreadful waste of potential that society cannot bear. So for pleading guilty to unlawful wounding she receives a sentence of 10 months’ imprisonment suspended for 18 months. Well, so goes the tabloid narrative.

Pringle is sympathetic to Lavinia, telling the court: “It seems to me that if this was a one-off, a complete one-off, to prevent this extraordinarily able young lady from following her long-held desire to enter the profession she wishes to would be a sentence which would be too severe. What you did will never, I know, leave you but it was pretty awful, and normally it would attract a custodial sentence, whether it is immediate or suspended.”

Judge Pringle seems to believe that because sentencing aims to protect society and help to rehabilitate the offender, jailing a bright student would be counterproductive.

Pringle has more to say to the young woman at Oxford Crown Court:

“There are many mitigating features in your case. Principally, at the age of 24 you have no previous convictions of any nature whatsoever. Secondly, I find that you were genuinely remorseful following this event and, indeed, it was against your bail conditions, you contacted your partner to fully confess your guilt and your deep sorrow for what happened.

“Thirdly, whilst you are a clearly highly-intelligent individual, you had an immaturity about you which was not commensurate for someone of your age. Fourthly, as the reports from the experts make clear, you suffer from an emotionally-unstable personality disorder, a severe eating disorder and alcohol drug dependence.

“Finally, and most significantly, you have demonstrated over the last nine months that you are determined to rid yourself of your alcohol and drug addiction and have undergone extensive treatment including counselling to address the many issues that you face. In particular, you have demonstrated to me since I adjourned this matter in May a strong and unwavering determination to do so despite the enormous pressure under which you were put and which has been referred to me by your counsel.”

 

The judge never said she was “too clever” for prison. Only newspapers did.

 

So the “highly intelligent” young woman – someone you might suppose can understand the weight of her crime better than most – doesn’t go to jail. Which appears to be a lesson for us all: don’t be poor, black and male. But it’s not that simple.

Lavinia Woodward should not be envied. She appears to be struggling and have suffered. And the media exposure must be challenging, especially to someone who appears unhappy in her own skin. It’ll be interesting to see what occurs when someone less bright and less blonde than Lavinia Woodward charged with similar crimes stands before the judge – and if the tabloids report their trials at all, let alone deem the cases worthy of front-page news. We might not like the story of the “toff” who “escaped” prison for “being too clever”, but that might be something to do with our own prejudices.

That’s another lesson for us all: if you want to be on the tabloids’ front pages and ride high on the news cycle: do be blonde, female and young.

 

Posted: 26th, September 2017 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment


A ‘very disgusting bodily fluid’ was found in soap dispensers

I once worked a biscuit factory. After an hour in the job, I swore never to eat that brand of biscuit again. Whenever I now see someone eating one, I wince and can’t look away. But maybe the taste of ‘personal extras’ are what keep the punters coming back?

Doubtless someone using the toilets at Detroit Metro Airport smelt their palms after washing them in ‘soap’ and thought “nice”. The rest of us are left wandering what the authorities mean by an “unusual substance” discovered in the toilets’ soap dispensers. It’s a “very disgusting… bodily fluid” they say. Which one?

We don’t know. But to be on the safe side all soap dispensers at Detroit airpot have been replaced, and we’d advise against washing your hands and to be on the look out for anyone sexually aroused by anything with a pump action. And that includes the NRA.

Spotter: Click on Detroit

Posted: 25th, September 2017 | In: News, Strange But True | Comment


Poppy monoculture: a draconian silence falls over Wembley

Without any hint of irony the Daily Telegraph hears that England – the national football side rebranded ‘The Three Lions’ – are allowed to wear pictures of poppies on their shirts and calls it a “major victory for the British game”. England might not win many meaningful football matches but when it comes to decorating our tops, decades of hurt have been undone. On November 10, England will wear poppies on their shirts as they play – get this – Germany at Wembley.

Before last year’s Armistice Day, FIFA banned England and Scotland — as well as Wales and Northern Ireland — from wearing the poppy, the symbol of remembrance, for matches on that day. FIFA says “political, religious or personal” designs should no infect the national shirts. But England and Scotland players wore them anyhow, albeit as black armbands with a poppy motif.  Odd, no? Football is about rules. It’s all about rules. Without rules there is no sport. Flouting the rules is no small deal.

Rory Smith notes that “Until 2009, it was rare for British club teams to display a poppy on their uniforms at this time of year… A campaign led by the Daily Mail that year changed all that. The intention, of course, is an admirable and honorable one: to show that football, as the slogan goes, remembers. That is not, however, necessarily the effect. Wearing a poppy is designed as an individual act; when it becomes compulsory, it loses not just much of its impact, but some of its meaning.”

An act of remembering in a minute’s contemplative silence became enforced duty. And it became political. Theresa May called it was “utterly outrageous” that FIFA should rule on poppies. The FA says “common sense” has won. The Sun calls it “VICTORY – Poppy ban KO-d as FIFA sees sense”.  “POPPY VICTORY,” declares the Express. “POPPY POWER,” hails the Mail. “Sportsmail ran a successful campaign in 2009 for all Premier League clubs to have the poppy emblem on their shirts, which is now commonplace.” No. It’s compulsory. And anyone who objects is portrayed as morally repugnant.

In 2010, Celtic fans protested a decision for their club’s shirt to feature the poppy. Their banner declared: “Your deeds they would shame all the devils in hell. Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan. No blood-stained poppy on our hoops.” Celtic vowed to ban he protestors. The Sun called them “hate mobs”. Don’t sing sectarian chants about past battles and loss, goes the top-down directive, but you must wear the poppy.

This is not about heartfelt remembrance, giving private thanks to the sacrifices of so many for our freedom (to choose) and supporting the armed forces; it’s about public displays of group think and compliance.

 

Posted: 25th, September 2017 | In: Back pages, Broadsheets, Key Posts, News, Sports, Tabloids | Comment


Leland Melvin writes and Roseanne Barr flees as Donald Trump reviews NFL games for poor anthem singing

Donald Trump wants sportsmen to stand up straight and give full throat to the US National Anthem. Trump’s directive is not an attempt to best Kim Jong-un in the battle to be the most controlling leader, rather because a few players in the National Football League (NFL) have turned the pre-match anthem into a form of protest.

Says Trump on twitter: “If NFL fans refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag & Country, you will see change take place fast. Fire or suspend!.. Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now… he is fired’?”

Let’s got further. As the cameras pan along the line of anthem and non-anthem singers, how about adopting a decibel-o-meter? Any players mumbling, not singing loud enough or humming something from the current Top 40 will be shot. To further test patriotism, the anthem will be played at random moments in the game. Anyone failing to stop instantly, place their palm to their heart and sing will also be shot. This offer will then be extended to cheerleaders, crowd members and through a ‘Retweet’ system linked to electrified Anthem Chairs, eventually the people watching at home.

Trump will then set up a commission to review past matches to check for inappropriate singing and non-singing. He willl put a bounty on Roseanne Barr, whose rendition before the San Diego Padres v Cincinnati Reds in 1990 game was described by President Bush as “disgraceful”.

 

 

As everyone prepares to die by the third quarter, it’s time to hear from Leland Melvin, the astronaut and former footballer:

To Donald Trump

I believe in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of this country even though at the time they were drafted, their tenets of life, liberty justice for all and eventual freedom of speech, religion, assembly, press and petition amendment ratified in Dec 1791, only applied to a select group of people and not ones that looked like me.

Donald Trump, I listened to your Alabama rally rant and could not believe how easily you say what you say.

We have become numb to your outlandish acts, tweets and recent retweet of you knocking down Hillary Clinton with a golf ball that you hit.

Donald Trump, your boorish and disgusting actions are not funny. They actually promote violence against women especially when your followers act out what you say.

I used to walk the grounds of UVA in Charlottesville, VA as a graduate student only to watch in horror as those same grounds became a battlefield being trod by Nazi and anti-Semitic worshippers armed with assault style weapons ready to fight to make America White again. (their words). You actually said there were nice people on both sides. People armed and ready to kill other Americans for the purpose of eradicating Blacks, Jews, Hispanics, Mexicans, Asians, Latinas and even the first real Americans, Native Americans to make America Great Again were “nice people”?

Comparing this to what you say in condemnation of an unarmed black man peacefully protesting by exercising his constitutional First Amendment rights by silently taking a knee is appalling, unnerving and reprehensible.

Today, you called Colin Kaepernick “a son-of-a-bitch.”

You said he should be fired.

You are calling his white mother a bitch.

The strong contrast in language for a black man and a Nazi is very telling. Do you have any sense of decency or shame in what you say to the American people that are part of your duty to serve respectfully with dignity, presidentially?

Our National Anthem has been edited to try not to offend, because when Francis Scott Key penned the song he watched freed slaves fighting for the British and wrote this stanza:

“And where is that band who so vauntingly swore,
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion
A home and a Country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave,
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.”

I guess if I were a slave back then I probably would have done anything to obtain freedom from my American oppressors who were whipping, killing, raping, dismembering, hanging or releasing the dogs on people like me all under our Constitution.

In 1814 former slaves fought with the British for their freedom from their American enslavers.

Key witnessed a battle from a ship off the Maryland shore at Fort McHenry, which inspired him to write what became our National Anthem.

I served my country not in the military, but as 1 of 362 American Astronauts that have explored the universe to help advance our civilization. Not just Americans, but all humans. I also was briefly in the NFL and stood for the National Anthem with my hand over my heart. What makes us great is our differences and respecting that we are all created equally even if not always treated that way.

Looking back at our planet from space really helps one get a bigger perspective on how petty and divisive we can be. Donald Trump, maybe you should ask your good friend Mr. Putin to give you a ride on a Soyuz rocket to our International Space Station and see what it’s like to work together with people we used to fight against, where your life depends on it. See the world and get a greater sense of what it means to be part of the human race, we call it the Orbital Perspective.

Donald Trump, please know that you are supposed to be a unifier and a compassionate and empathetic leader. If you can’t do the job then please step down and let someone else try. I pray that you do the right thing.

May God bless you.

Sincerely,

Leland Melvin
Former Astronaut and NFL Player

 

Leland Melvin

Leland Melvin

Posted: 24th, September 2017 | In: News, Politicians | Comment


Punching fascists and other hate crimes: why Astro Labe ‘attacked’ tony Abbott

Astro Labe has been charged with assault for an alleged attack on Australian MP Tony Abbott.  Labe, a 38-year-old bartender and barista, tells Adelaide Now why he did it. Was it all about Abbott’s opposition to same-sex marriage, something Australians are voting on? At the time of the alleged incident, Labe was sporting a same-sex sticker on his anorak. He says:

“It was nothing really remotely to do with that. It’s just about Tony Abbott – the f***ing worm that he is. All it was is I saw Tony Abbott and I’d had half a skinful and I wanted to nut the c***. I want to divorce myself [from the same-sex marriage issue] — not because I disagree with their stance — but this was nothing to do with that. That’s just my personal hatred.”

 

Astro Labe

Not a hate criminal

 

Is this a hate crime, then?

“I was like ‘Tony, Tony’, I kind of trotted up behind him. I trotted up behind him, ‘I just want to shake your hand’ and just went bang. Kind of missed it. Gave him a fat lip. He got off pretty lightly. He’s just lucky I’m not a violent c***.”

Phew! Lucky escape for Abbott that Labe’s a peacnick.

He goes on to tell Sydney Morning Herald:

“[It] was just a lifelong ambition to headbutt a fascist because I’m a skinhead that likes ska music and hates fascism. He’s an evil c—, I’m an anarchist and I believe in human rights … I headbutted him quite piss-poorly because I was quite pissed.”

If Labe wants to attack a  fascist, why did he go for Abbott, someone who does not oppose democracy in principle? What Labe means by fascist, of course, is anyone he disagree with and finds morally unacceptable. It’s thinking very bit as lazy as his headbutt.

Posted: 24th, September 2017 | In: News, Politicians | Comment