Friday, October 30, 2009

A Faraway Raptor Sits and Waits

these were cropped from the originals, which i took from pretty far away, very much magnified.

Sweetest Chiuaua

From the calendar I love best,

this is where i generally get the dog photos  that i did not take myself.
i LOVE this calendar. it makes me smile every day.

from the calendar

Jasmine is a Good Dog! by mtodd

Jasmine and Cindy, Sittin in a Tree! mtodd

this is abby, i took her pic last month in lawrence

this is janie's dog!

and sweetest santa:
The sweetest santa, More the Real Santa HERE

Jasmine the Chiuaua. mtodd June 2010

I did not take this pic of the Blond Chiuaua pup. From The Calendar above
More Pups HERE


addendum: some pics from the Pinterest...

Jess' Story Part 6 -- Aftermath and the Future.

Manhattan Serial Rapist
A year following the assault, Jess stated:
“I haven’t dated anyone for a year.
In a way, I am scared of that day when I’ll have to tell someone what happened to me, I’m afraid they’ll think that it ruined me, mentally. Like I have a scar in me, and that I won’t see a sexual relationship in the same way as other people, even though I think I will.
Because I don’t see what happened to me as a sexual event. I don’t see it as that at all.”

The research supports Jess’ view. Rape is considered by most experts to be a crime motivated by the low self-esteem and anger of the rapist, and a need for power and control through hurting others.
But she has some fears that come and go.

“Well, I feel like my family might not see me as innocent—you know, one of these days, when I get married, when I’m walking down the isle, they won’t see me quite as pure, I mean I know it’s not my fault, but in way I feel like that was taken away from me.”

When she considers the future, Jess is hopeful. “I want people to know I’m able to move on with my life. Something so tragic happened, but now I know I can overcome anything. Her message to others: Don’t assume you are safe. Take precautions such as extra locks on doors, lock your balcony sliding doors, check with apartment managers to make them install “panic” button alarms in each apartment.

Time Passed.

As I mentioned at the beginning of this Story, Jess is now doing very well.
She is a very successful, intelligent, caring individual
that anyone would be proud to call a friend, a sister, a wife.
She recently spoke of her experience:

"I have tried to not make this experience affect my life even though it has definitely scarred me forever. It's upsetting to me because I loved my college experience but, I always think about the
rapist that lives there and how sad it is that he could do it to another girl any day. I finished up my degree there because I didn't want this experience to change the goals and path that I had set out for myself. I wasn't going to let one disturbed person change my goal of getting a degree from K-State. To me that would mean that he had succeeded in ruining or controlling another person's life-which is what I believe he wants to do by raping young girls.
At first this experience affected me --
 I moved into a place with roommates and would never stay there alone. But, within 2 years of the rape I overcame my fear and was able to live by myself (in another town). I have always been very aware of my surroundings but since then, I have been very suspicious of strangers if they are staring at me.
This experience has definitely affected my ability to sleep well at night and one thing that I haven't been able to enjoy since is sleeping with my windows open at night. I enjoyed doing that in the past and since then have not been able to (even though that night my windows were closed). Maybe once I'm married I'll be able to enjoy that again but, as for now I would never be able to fall asleep with them open."

Jess considered the specific emotional fall out  from the experience, and her healing.

"From day one, I told myself that there was nothing I could've done differently that would've caused this not to happen. Therefore I have no regrets....that is how I have made it through this experience and healed myself. So many girls get raped and are embarrassed/mad/angry because they blame themselves and for me there was no reason to blame myself. I didn't do anything wrong. This is just a terrible thing that happened to me and the only thing I can do is try to move on and hope that he gets caught before it happens to another girl.
 I was at my house in my bed with my doors locked and this terrible thing happened. And, I truly believe that this guy had been stalking me so, if it didn't happen that night and I would've been somewhere else, it would've happened another night.  The memories affect me and I can't wait until the day that he is caught."

Perhaps he would come forward and make things right.
"That is when I will truly be able to move on with my life. "

Punish the Onlookers by Wendy Murphy

By Wendy J. Murphy

October 30, 2009
A California girl’s alleged gang rapists face life in prison, but what of the two-dozen people who watched and said nothing? Wendy Murphy on why we need laws to compel bystanders to report crimes.
Unless we ramp up the pressure on people to report crime, we risk ceding our communities to the power of thugs, rapists, and “no-snitch” bullies.

In Northern California, four young men, ages 15 to 19, have been charged with rape and special circumstances that could put them behind bars for life for the alleged gang assault of a 15-year-old girl outside a high school. But what of the nearly two-dozen people, including adults, who watched the alleged gang rape last Saturday and did nothing?

This wasn’t just a few people standing around watching a barroom brawl or consensual group sex. This was a group of folks finding entertainment value in human savagery.
Cops say more arrests are likely for some of the witnesses—for “aiding and abetting”—but only if they can prove some degree of active participation that somehow facilitated the crime. Those who only enjoyed the spectacle will face no charges, though nearby security guards who also reportedly did nothing can and should face civil lawsuits for negligence.

This is when I start to think we should stop claiming to be the most civilized nation on earth.
If two-dozen people can stand by and do nothing while a group of men forces a parade of penises and other objects inside a defenseless 15-year-old girl, there’s a long list of words and phrases I can think of using—but civilized isn’t among them.

Yet we have no laws in place to punish or deter such vicious passivity.
Oxymoronic as it might sound, “vicious passivity” is exactly what we’re talking about. ... entertainment value in human savagery.
Four animals (apologies to PETA activists for the insult) allegedly did things to a teenage girl that even the most hardened criminals don’t do to each other behind bars. And while it’s incomprehensible that not one of them had the capacity for a moment of decency, it’s almost harder to understand how two-dozen people thought so little of the crime that not one of them did anything to help.

If this case is an expression of how some young men feel about sexuality and violence, it simply isn’t practical anymore to expect people to treat each other with civility. And even if this case is an anomaly, one 15-year-old suffering the way this victim did is more than any society should tolerate.

That so many people watched and did nothing suggests that we not only need tougher enforcement of laws against sexual violence—only a small percentage of rapists spend even one day behind bars—we need better ways of incentivizing bystanders to give a damn. Put another way, it’s embarrassing that doing nothing is OK, but without some legal ramification for such interpersonal inertia, doing nothing will always be the preferred path of least resistance for many people.

One case doesn’t an epidemic make, but gang rape isn’t exactly rare. It happens often enough that there’s actually a pet name for it. “Running a Train” is what opportunistic rapists call it when they line up to get “f—ked,” as one person reportedly described it to a bystander outside Richmond High. In short, it’s about guys reveling in the fact that there’s an incapacitated female body nearby to which a sex offender can do whatever he wants.

That one human being has the capacity to so mistreat another is not news. Nor is it shocking that laws against sexual violence have failed to prevent rape. Rapists don’t respect women—why would they respect the law? But there’s a good argument that requiring witnesses to report sexual violence to police when they see it might actually make a difference in reducing incidence rates.

It’s hard to know what the impact of such a law might be because in the few states that have such laws, such as Massachusetts, the crime of failing to report a crime is almost never enforced, partly because it’s a tough crime to uncover, but also because civil libertarians claim it offends individual liberty to require people to do anything to further the investigative efforts of law enforcement.

Naysayers also will complain that we can’t expect people to “snitch” on each other because the risk of retaliation is too great, and because they have to remain silent in order to survive in their communities. One study found that the Los Angeles County district attorney investigated 1,600 cases of witness intimidation, a number that has grown consistently in recent years. In more than 1,000 gang-violence cases, witnesses refused to cooperate.

But citizens have a right and a duty to testify in judicial proceedings. If a person is summoned to appear in court and doesn’t show up, he or she can be arrested and sent to jail. The system itself, not the police and prosecutors, has a right to insist on “everyman’s evidence.” It isn’t fascism, it’s democracy in action.

It would be even better if we could encourage more direct bystander intervention, and not just criminalize the nonreporting of crime. But it’s a lot to ask folks to put themselves in harm’s way for the protection of others and the good of society—even though we expect firefighters, cops, and people in the military to do it every day for little compensation.

And there’s always a risk that encouraging witnesses to get personally involved in crime prevention will breed vigilantism. But most data from Crime Stopper types of organizations and neighborhood watch programs suggest the opposite is true. More involvement by citizens tends to increase the social stigma associated with unlawful behavior—which helps reduce crime.

I’m not saying we should all take CSI training and start snooping on each other about every suspicious thing we see and hear. But we know that mandatory child-abuse reporting laws help to protect kids by obligating nonoffending adults to file a report with protective-services agencies when there are “reasonable grounds” to believe that a child is being neglected or abused.
If we can make a phone call when we THINK a child is in danger, is it too much to ask that we do the same thing when we KNOW firsthand that a human being of any age is being brutalized?

Wendy Murphy is a former child abuse and sex crimes prosecutor who teaches at New England Law/Boston. Wendy specializes in the representation of crime victims, women and children. Her expose of the American legal system, And Justice For Some, came out in 2007. A former NFL cheerleader and visiting scholar at Harvard Law School, Wendy lives outside Boston with her husband and five children.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Nothing Is Invisible

In A Handbasket

I was overcome with a feeling of revulsion when i read the little clip in the KC Star:

Around a dozen individuals watched as a girl was raped and beaten by outside a homecoming dance.
"The crowd of students who watched and may have even recorded a two-and-a-half hour gang rape of a California teenager should be held criminally liable for indirectly encouraging the attack, experts told ABC News today. The outrage over the gang rape of the 15-year-old girl outside Richmond High School's homecoming dance is equalled by the fury that so many stood by and watched, and may have encouraged the attackers by their actions or their words." says one report.

I asked a student to see what she could find about this. Here is what she sent:
"This community is really screwed up. The high school has had 19 students murdered in the last year and it sounds like the school administration are trying to avoid any kind of responsibility. "
Gang rape raises questions about bystanders' role

Friend of Richmond, California, gang rape suspect tells what happened on night of attack

Richmond rape reaction: Residents pray, light candles and vent their anger

Can Prosecutors Charge Gang Rape Witnesses for Doing Nothing?

Five people now under arrest for Richmond, California, gang rape (video)

Police Look for More Suspects in Gang Rape

3 arrested in Calif. in alleged gang rape of girl

Prosecutor About to Decide on Charges for 5 in Gang Rape

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Deceiver has It Coming, Baby

Well October began
and a really nasty rape occured.
What makes me characterize it that way? Aren't they all really nasty? Yes. I guess i am being redundant. Each crime makes me sad and angry.
Every Single rape makes me want to DO SOMETHING.
so what is it that i am trying to tell you when i say, a Really Vile Rape happened?
to try and not let You get used to it either?
that is, not to let them become typical?
is it about seeing and wanting you to know how horrible it was for this very one?
for this kansas girl, this oklahoma boy, this oregon woman?
that for each each girl or boy, it is a heartbreaking experience that screws up the very wonderful and heretofore taken for granted sense of trust and connecting and relationship that they have been given through careful nurturing or journeying through time?
(a Plant, so Tiny, lovingly sprouted, tended, nourished, protected, enjoyed for its individual beauty, put outside for a lovely fall day and some nasty rotten Little creature comes along and does its destructive, hurtful, selfish little act of theft. perhaps the little creature has some hurting inside deep and is trying not to notice. let us help him.
For those who are passing along their own hurt, let us Pray. )

My guess
it has something to do with those little creatures who are artful and full of guile.
Perhaps--yes, it seems when the rape involves lots of deception
 it makes me angrier. Oh, The Deceiver has it coming, baby.  A guy who acts like he is someone's girlfriend to fool those around the room, or who dresses his comatose victim in his clothing, or who pretends he has a message from a friend or who uses tricks to fool a woman into following him; culling her from her friends---the deception is evil.
The Art of Rape.   

So October continues and more rapes occur.
 And some are particularly galling. Aren't they all galling? Yes.
Yet somehow,
a girl still years away from 20
who comes to the Big Little Apple from a sweet little farm--full of expectations of a great fresh adventure--
 who is targeted for her sweetness and 15-year-old Naiveté
Cruelly Fooled,
who is Drugged, whose Conciousness is obliterated without her knowing
what is happening,
whose life is put at risk because a loser weakling selfish little thug of a ----------(i can't find the right name) decides to actually DRUG another human-
it really truly exposes the truth the Math
of Violence begets Violence.
perhaps DECEIVER is the name.

i have to stop
and get some air.
more ...
this morning another report.

Young women do not usually report the crime. want to know why?
first, read the national reports why:

but i can tell you from experience that women are often not believed - sometimes even by their own families! "friends" will often tell them not to "ruin the perpetrator's life." The police, lawyers, hospital folk and advocates let them know their case will either probably not go to trial or that a conviction would be unlikely.
no matter how confidential reports are, they aren't. word gets out. "sides" are taken.
I can and will give reasons to report.
but i can and do give complete power to the crime victim to decide how they want to handle it. no one knows better than they, how to handle their life at the moment.

On Any Given Day

On any given day, open any newspaper and there are multiple reports of sexual abuse, child porn rings, rape, sexual sadism, and more.
I opened the KC Star one day this week to find 5 stoires about the sexual abuse of children. One case involved a man who laced ice cream with sleeping agents and gave them to children.  Phillip Edwards (age 60) was indicted on various charges. he told investigators he did not do anything he felt was wrong. he felt that our society's age limits on "sexual behaviors" were arbitrary. Once the girls were unconscious, he would then pose them (ages 6-12) for pornographic pictures, and then distribute them online.

Reading story after story after story like this can get you down. each month the stories are worse.
i am interested in your comments and emails regarding your thoughts on how we are reaping this sickness.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Autumn on Colorado

I miss Colorado.
The Rockies are healing.

coming from the East,
as one approaches the immense Lift in the Earth, an intake of breath begins which does not end .
like the backs of dinosurs appearing through the distant mists, and happy that with each blink they remain, growing closer...
in the Little Apple, i happened down Colorado Street yesterday.
At Noon I had stood in a high place near the lake,
with eyes closed, meeting the wet wind and
breathing in autumn molecules which had the scent of december

the trees were showing off luxurious overflow of color. some were impossible; God must have tweaked the hue/saturation button.
i needed more, and wended my way down into "old town" -- the blocks of houses which were stable over so many years. the trees were old and healthy. i turned and suddenly found a Lane of light and color; yellow, maze, burnt orange. the boughs overhung the road and reached to the other side. it was a painting, a hidden place, an atumnal archetype, in the middle of town. Too lovely not to share on this particular day; i went to the office, enticed the students, and off we went. Our path left the non-natives unsure of exactly where we were. But here it is: we were on Colorado Street and 16th, moving east. The magical street was a lane of colored light. It has been 24 hours but if you can make it, hie thee!!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Paolo the Shy

Paolo lived by the bay in Tampa.
A very good photographic subject,
Showing his Shyness.

Pretty Shy Kitty named Konza Prairie Dog

Kitten on Courderoy, The Konza Prairie Dog

le konza dark watches the whip

Shy Kitty Cat