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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sunday Morning News

Posted by on Sun, Dec 9, 2012 at 9:02 AM

Chavez Needs Surgery: He's directed the people to vote in his vice president if anything happens in surgery.

No The Other Tripoli: There's fighting in Lebanon's northern city, Tripoli, where clashes with machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades killed four people.

Mandela Spends Night in Hospital: The former South African president was admitted to the hospital yesterday, and current President Zuma assured the public yesterday that Mandela was only admitted for tests. However, after he spent the night, many are voicing concern about the 94-year-old civil rights leader.

Olympia Bar to Allow Marijuana Smoking: But only for over 21-year-olds and in an enclosed members-only type area separate from the rest of the bar.

If You Needed Any More Encouragement Not To Walk Alone at Night: Horiuchi Park, off Boren, was the site of a Friday night sexual assault. After the assault, the woman managed to get to a nearby shop and call for help.

That Crazy Kid! Yesterday night Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi backed down from his power grab. Maybe the masses of people camping out calling for his head on a pike changed his opinion.

OMG Weddings!!! As Dan Savage mentioned, there are wonderful free weddings for wonderful happy couples today at City Hall! You should come and celebrate with these happy happy happy people. And while I can't speak to the legality of throwing rice, you can bring flowers! Weddings start at 10 a.m. and go until 5 p.m.


Comments (39) RSS

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On a PIKE, not a spike. Heads go on pikes.
Posted by Pol Pot on December 9, 2012 at 9:15 AM · Report this
Yes, walking alone at night is dangerous, but you know what? Maybe the main take away from that story needs to not be yet again what women should or should not do to try to prevent rape. Rape isn't a natural disaster. Why isn't your summary about finding the piece of shit who did this and how to make this area safer for everyone from future similar pieces of shit? This kind of a response to rape is a huge part of the problem.
Posted by olechka on December 9, 2012 at 9:22 AM · Report this
Fred Casely 3
I was under the impression that Tripoli was not just a northern Libyan city, but the capital.
Posted by Fred Casely on December 9, 2012 at 9:41 AM · Report this
Phoebe in Wallingford 4
Even though the sun has gone down at this time of the year, it irks me that 6:30pm is 'alone at night'. It's still commute time.
Posted by Phoebe in Wallingford on December 9, 2012 at 9:45 AM · Report this
JonnoN 5
@1, @2 and @4 are all correct.
@3 No The Other Tripoli
(-1 to intern for capitalizing "The" :P )
Posted by JonnoN on December 9, 2012 at 9:57 AM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 6

Yes. It's classic victim blaming. This is not a reason to never walk alone, it's a reason to stop rape.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on December 9, 2012 at 10:02 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 7
When I moved to S.F. in the seventies, we used to smoke pot in the bars. In fact, I think I smoked pot in a bar's outdoor area here many years ago. Oh well, more things change...
Posted by Pope Peabrain on December 9, 2012 at 10:03 AM · Report this
reverend dr dj riz 8
wedding tip # 47 don't throw rice.. it messes up the inards of the hongry innocent birdies. throw birdseed or dried lavender
Posted by reverend dr dj riz on December 9, 2012 at 10:12 AM · Report this
internet_jen 9
Anyone got pics of the city hall decorations?
Posted by internet_jen on December 9, 2012 at 10:15 AM · Report this
Anne18 10
@ 2 - Right on. Woman can live in fear or, as a society, we can work on preventing RAPISTS from raping.
Posted by Anne18 on December 9, 2012 at 10:25 AM · Report this
douchus 11
#8 - Much respect, but I do not believe that rice actually harms birds. I have seen no studies either way, but why would it? Birds eat grain all the time...
Posted by douchus on December 9, 2012 at 10:31 AM · Report this
Tacoma Traveler 12
If one must throw rice, throw cooked rice.
Posted by Tacoma Traveler on December 9, 2012 at 10:38 AM · Report this
#10 - how exactly do we prevent rapists from raping? It seems to me that if a rapist is going to attempt a rape, there's not much we can do to stop him. It's not exactly a crime of passion, but it does seem like something that stems from deep within the psyche of the rapist. I get that anti-rape campaigns and "take back the night" rallies feel good, but are potential rapists's minds really swayed by such things?

(Please, don't think I'm being an apologist for rapists. That's idiotic. I wish you all the luck in stopping rape.)
Posted by catsnbanjos on December 9, 2012 at 11:06 AM · Report this
Queen of Sleaze 14
The rice thing is a myth. Feel free to throw rice sans guilty conscience.
Posted by Queen of Sleaze on December 9, 2012 at 11:07 AM · Report this
@1: My memory is you preferred your heads in plastic bags rather than on pointed sticks of any denomination..
Posted by Eric from Boulder on December 9, 2012 at 11:51 AM · Report this
Tacoma Traveler 16

The medical literature tells us that rapists generally speaking have a mental condition known as an Axis II Personality Disorder. there's something all these folks have in common: they tend to attack what they perceive as easy targets.

So, the answer to your question is to make their targets harder to attack. We can do this in a number of ways:

1) Alter the environment. Better street lighting, more cops on the beat in high-impact areas, more places where calls for help can be pl;aced and heard. emergency alarms that will attract lots of attention if activated by the victim, etc.

2) Harden the targets. Teach women and small statured people generally how to defend themselves through martial arts classes. Teach potential victims to to exude an aura of self-confidence. Sometimes what you say can make a huge difference, such as telling a stranger at a bar that your dad is the county Sheriff or that your family is politically connected. Even if untrue, it makes you a much less appealing target. So does walking with your head up, and with a confident stride. Shy, timid creatures with no local family and zero friends are the easiest targets.

3) Track the assailants. While everyone is capable of experiencing temporary psychopathy resulting from illness, brain injury or stress, some people are permanently psychopathic, and this originates from deep structural differences between their brains and those of normal people. If someone has committed a sexual assault and has been diagnosed with an Axis II personality disorder arising not from temporary circumstances but from an organic brain structure, that person should be tracked and monitored for life. If they should act upon their inhuman drives again, the police should be able to respond immediately to limit harm to potential victims.

4) Empower the community. Community attitudes greatly influence how a community responds to a victim's cry for help and an assailant's attempt to cause harm. Develop a societal norm that declares misogyny to be unacceptable. Promote the idea that physical strength is not by and of itself an admirable trait, or that persons of small stature or build are not inferior. Create a social more that judges people by their ideas and the strength of their minds and ideas. Create social sanctions against sadism and cruelty. While these are instinctive traits, they can be suppressed if not inhibiting them would lead to ostracism.

And above all, your approaches should be data-driven. If it can be shown that a given area has a high incidence of rape, it should receive stronger attention. Treat rape as if it were a disease, and let the epidemiologists contain the contagion.
Posted by Tacoma Traveler on December 9, 2012 at 12:01 PM · Report this
So many happy people at city hall! Wish I didn't have to work so I could have stayed all day.
Posted by Hanoumatoi on December 9, 2012 at 12:10 PM · Report this
I thought we passed that initiative telling smokers to take it outside for the health and wellbeing of other patrons and, specially, bar workers. Is marijuana now exempted because it's cooler? Or is there a loophole because it wasn't mentioned specifically in the initiative way back when?

Obviously this is a business owner trying to capitalize on a trend, and there's nothing wrong with that in and of itself, but I wonder if this is also a sneaky way to undermine the no-indoor-smoking initiative. (And yes, I can't stand marijuana, even as I voted for its legalization, but my point remains.)
Posted by floater on December 9, 2012 at 12:21 PM · Report this
shuvoff 19
@18 The area reserved for smoking is a dues-paying-members-only area staffed by volunteers rather than employees, which is how Frankie's wiggles around the anti-smoking law. The establishment (as I understand from the article, I've never actually been there) has a regular public space in addition to the special smokers area which is obviously designed to keep smoking patrons happy & legally segregated.

From what I understand, though, everyone would have to bring their own to smoke, as any sharing (let alone selling) of cannabis is still illegal under 502. Bumming cigarettes and sharing cigars while trading tastes of beverages? A'ok.
But even in private, passing a joint between friends is still not allowed under the new law.
Posted by shuvoff on December 9, 2012 at 1:03 PM · Report this
@18: Read the article. It's one of those bars where they have a "private club" room upstairs where willing participants pay $10/year to have access. I don't know what, if any, loopholes there are in the smoking ban regarding marijuana, but the private club loophole seems not to discriminate between types of smoke.

That said, the [whomever polices the smoking ban] is continually trying to shut down these so-called private clubs in which the only thing defining them is paying an annual fee, or just signing your name on a dotted line, as the hookah bars all started doing right after the initiative passed. Seems to be an uphill battle.
Posted by Garth B on December 9, 2012 at 1:07 PM · Report this
Tacoma Traveler 21
18, 19, 20

I'm opposed to smoking anything. The human respiratory and circulatory systems did not evolve to accommodate carbon monoxide gas as anything other than a poison. A marijuana brownie bakery I would be fine with. I oppose allowing bars to have smoking rooms for the same reason that I oppose bars having a "let's snort lines of rat poison" parties. Harmless fun is one thing, group suicide is another.
Posted by Tacoma Traveler on December 9, 2012 at 1:15 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 22

The interesting thing here is that given the option of limiting the freedom of potential rapists, we choose instead to place limits on the freedom of potential rape victims. Or more generally, rather than risk the possibility of infringing on the rights of men to come and go as they please, we instead decide it's better that women can have their lives circumscribed.

It's not the old saw about "trading a little freedom for a little security", because it's really a matter of protecting the freedom of those in the established power structure at the expense of those outside it.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on December 9, 2012 at 1:46 PM · Report this
shuvoff 23
Just make sure not to share or sell those brownies. Gotta eat that whole pan to yourself, because passing them out is still more illegal than strangers exchanging tobacco-stick-cancer-factories. Because people who would never choose to ingest cannabis in any form decided a long time ago that their decisions about what to put in their body should be imposed on others.
Posted by shuvoff on December 9, 2012 at 2:06 PM · Report this
ScrawnyKayaker 24
@16 So, it's OK for women or small statured people to fight back with their fists, knees or car keys, but you won't allow them a weapon that will actually work more often than not, like a .380? Brilliant.
Posted by ScrawnyKayaker on December 9, 2012 at 2:19 PM · Report this
McJulie 25
My mother has been attempting to encourage me not to walk alone at night for twenty years and it hasn't stopped me yet. That's because walking alone at night isn't dangerous. At least, it's not particularly more dangerous than anything else you could be doing.

If a woman is sexually assaulted, it's probably going to be by someone she knows. So, statistically speaking, she's actually safer alone than with a male companion.

When women are assaulted by strangers, it might happen at night in a public place when she is alone. But it might happen when she's alone in her home, or when she's not alone, or when she's at her workplace, or when she goes to use the restroom at a dance club. It could happen in the morning or the middle of the day or in the afternoon. The assaulter might be her date, her boyfriend, husband, uncle, father. It could be the driver of the cab she took in order to avoid walking by herself at night, or the guy she sorta knows from work who offers her a ride to where she parked her car because hey, it gets dark so early these days, doesn't it?

We need to stop perpetuating the idea that there's a special danger conferred by the simple fact of a woman having the gall to exist by herself, after dark, in a public place. Yes, assault happens under those circumstances, but only because it happens under every circumstance you can imagine.

The impulse to tell women they should try to avoid assault by sequestering themselves is the same impulse that leads, unchecked, to the abuses of the Taliban.
Posted by McJulie on December 9, 2012 at 3:02 PM · Report this
shuvoff 26
@ 25 FTW!
Posted by shuvoff on December 9, 2012 at 3:25 PM · Report this
venomlash 27
@24: Two stiffened fingers jabbed between the clavicles, just above the manubrium sterni, will at the very least keep some distance between you and an assailant. Less lethal than a firearm and a whole lot less messy.
Posted by venomlash on December 9, 2012 at 3:34 PM · Report this
ScrawnyKayaker 28
@27 In the real world, shit like that tends to have a tiny success rate when you're talking about 90 pound women vs. 200 pound men. In my college aikido class, I watched small women struggle to have ANY effect on big guys who were COOPERATING. If there'd been any retaliatory effort, we'd have had a woman with a concussion in about 0.17 seconds.

If you suggested "open up a big can of pepper spray," I might accept that as a better alternative.
Posted by ScrawnyKayaker on December 9, 2012 at 4:31 PM · Report this
@2 @4 @6 @25...fuck it, to those who think I am victim blaming:

Rape is the fault of rapists. Rapists are scummy pieces of shit and no woman has ever 'asked for it' or 'had it coming' because she was walking alone at night. The title I used for that post was my personal reaction to reading the news that in an area I walk through most days at night by myself, as a woman, makes me afraid. And no, I don't feel confident or safe, nor do I have faith that passers by would help me if I was in trouble.

Additionally, I would love it if we could catch this fucker but the only thing we have to go on is this point is that he was 1) male and 2) wearing a tan jacket. So rather than lynching every dude in the area wearing a tan jacket, I'm going to let the police do their work.

Glad that this thread is happening and that at least one person mentioned that violent rape is exceedingly rare and acquaintance rape is practically a pandemic.
Posted by Guest Author on December 9, 2012 at 5:20 PM · Report this
vavavarooooom 30
Seriously, Stranger -- how many times are you going to publish this 'she was asking for it by daring to leave her home' bullshit? Again and again and again I read this here. If the Times wrote an article saying that the solution to gay-bashing was for all gay people to be closeted, how would you respond to that? Go fuck yourself, unpaid intern. I will go where I want.
Posted by vavavarooooom on December 9, 2012 at 5:33 PM · Report this
vavavarooooom 31
OK Unpaid Intern - you are not going to lynch every guy in a tan jacket, you are just going to lock up all the women. Makes sense.
Posted by vavavarooooom on December 9, 2012 at 5:36 PM · Report this
Bob in Guanajuato 32
vavavarooooom, Ms. Unpaid Intern didn't type the things you attributed to her. You're behaving badly.
Posted by Bob in Guanajuato on December 9, 2012 at 7:05 PM · Report this
"This kind of a response to rape is a huge part of the problem."

Right on olechka!
Posted by nwcitizen on December 9, 2012 at 9:38 PM · Report this
venomlash 34
@28: Aikido and most other martial arts are all about defensive tactics, emphasizing proper positioning and leverage to make the most of one's strength. The technique I laid out is not like that.
No matter how big and muscle-bound someone may be, everyone has their weak spots. The trachea is soft and unprotected at the base of the throat, lacking the rigid rings of cartilage that reinforce its middle span. The effect of a stiff object pushed into that spot is not one that can be overcome by brute force; pushing against it will only crush the trachea. Just as effective as kicking a man in the balls (if less excruciating) and somewhat more dangerous.
If you don't believe me, try jabbing yourself (GENTLY) in that spot. (Between the medial ends of your clavicles, just above the manubrium sterni.) You will feel a horrible sense of choking pressure.
Posted by venomlash on December 9, 2012 at 9:52 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 35

Even so, maybe we could make a rule saying men should not be allowed to walk around alone at night. Have somebody next to you in case you decide to rape, and they can talk you out of it, or else call the cops. It would be a pain in the ass for men, and that might motivate them to take the problem seriously.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on December 9, 2012 at 10:02 PM · Report this
TortoiseTurtle 36
@35, You think men don't take rape seriously? You know that's utter bullshit right? Men get raped, and not all rapists are men, so WTF are you even talking about?

Telling a person - especially a person readily perceived to be an easy target - to make safe decisions is in no way 'victim blaming.' Rape, like robbery and other violent crimes is not going to magically disappear from wishful thinking. So, until the law of averages suddenly gets obliterated by tear in spacetime, be aware of your surroundings and make smart decisions, okay?

Also, someone needs to tell people that the 'tell men not to rape' posters weren't ACTUALLY suggesting that as a solution. It was just a little role reversal to call attention to the (uncommon) phenomenon of ACTUAL victim blaming.
Posted by TortoiseTurtle on December 9, 2012 at 11:28 PM · Report this
The bartenders at Frankie's are awesome, their normal patrons are not.
Posted by suddenlyorcas on December 10, 2012 at 8:20 AM · Report this
@24: Yes, knees, car keys and fists are much, MUCH less likely to be taken from a woman and used against her, no?
Posted by suddenlyorcas on December 10, 2012 at 8:24 AM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 39

Men do not take rape seriously.

Men care about sports. They care about terrorism. Taxes. The price of gas. Men care about a long list of shit and they show how much they care by their actions. Based on their actions, rape is a very, very low priority.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on December 10, 2012 at 2:09 PM · Report this

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