Wednesday, November 26, 2014

UVA "Pledges Zero Tolerance Policy In Rape Cases"

link
   This, uh, highlights the question: what degree of tolerance did they think was ok before? And how can anyone think that a less-than-zero tolerance policy toward rape is a reasonable thing?
   I'm torn when I hear this sort of thing. Of course, I think we ought to have a "zero tolerance" policy toward rape and sexual assault. I think we ought to have a "zero tolerance" policy toward all assault, for that matter. (Though I do agree that sexual assault is a particularly heinous category of assault.) However, I also think we're in the grip of a kind of rape crisis hysteria (hardly an original thought). And some institutions seem to have begun listening to extremist feminists, SJW/neo-PCs and the like, and, consequently, begun defining rape downward--e.g. characterizing ordinary drunken sex is rape. (And not mutual rape, incidentally...only males seem to be classified as perpetrators...)
   As often seems to be the case, people are justifiably incensed by a terrible crime, but they can't catch the actual criminals, so they settle for catching catchable people and characterizing them as criminals. Liberals are totally against this...except in the case of rape...in which case they seem to be...rather more open to the strategy...
   So...promising as it sounds, I can't emit three robust cheers for UVA just yet. I do hope that they've seen the light...but that means that I hope that they're planning to crack down on actual perpetrators, rather than doing the other thing.

Carolina 66, Butler 74

   Congrats to Butler, who played hard, and played good D much of the game.
   Unfortunately, that was one of the worst games I've ever seen a Carolina team play. Couldn't shoot, couldn't hit free throws, couldn't hold onto the ball, and, worst of all, got absolutely killed on the boards by a much smaller, much less athletic team. It can be good to get your ass totally kicked early in the season...so maybe this will be one of those watchacallit?...learning experiences... OTOH, it really did have that it's just not your day feel to it...so maybe it's just best to shrug and move on.
   Anyway, more Carolina hoops tomorrow, so it's hard to complain...
   Go Tar Heels!

Timeline/Graphic Of Wilson/Brown Shooting in Ferguson

   I've been looking for something like this...and here it is.
   I'm ignorant of the law, but it's rather difficult for me to believe that there's not enough doubt about what happened to warrant a trial.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Jonathan Cohn at TNR on Ferguson

  Worth a read, it seems to me.   (via Lawyers, Guns, and Money)
   My poorly-informed view from afar is that Wilson's account sounds more consistent with the physical evidence than alternate accounts that make Wilson a murderer...but I've wondered whether there might be enough contrary evidence that the grand jury should have indicted and let a trial jury sort it out.
   Sadly, I'm too ignorant of the law to deserve an opinion on this. If anybody can point me to anything helpful, I'd appreciate it.

Nobody Cares That Benghazigate Was GOP Propaganda

The false allegations seemed to get a whole lot more air time than the refutation

Monday, November 24, 2014

Ferguson: Reddit Live Feed

   Reddit live thread
   Doesn't look too good.
   McCulloch's summary of the evidence was fairly persuasive, but it shouldn't take long for lots of careful analyses to appear on the web, and then we'll know better what to think about all this.

No One Has Ever Been Expelled From UVA For Sexual Assault

   If we temporarily set aside questions about "Jackie"s rape allegations in Rolling Stone, this was the most striking revelation to me. Since 1998, 183 expulsions for honor code violations like cheating on exams, but 0 expulsions ever for sexual assault.
   I have some inclination to think that sexual assault should always be a police matter, so I could imagine a situation in which this made sense...but it doesn't sound like that's the kind of thing actually going on over in Hooville...
   I couldn't really understand Associate Dean Eramo's attempt to justify the policy of not expelling students who admit to sexual assault.
   This whole mess has caused me to spend rather a lot of time starting uncomprehendingly at my computer screen with a stupid look on my face. I've spent the vast majority of my life in academia, but I'm really just baffled by much of what's going on and being revealed in this case.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Rolling Stone: A Rape On Campus: A Brutal Assault And Struggle For Justice At UVA

   This hit the internet like a bomb.
   I was prepared to be outraged... If true, of course, it is horrific almost beyond belief. However, honestly, the account does not sound very plausible to me. That counts for very little, of course, and I don't make much of such initial judgments of plausibility--even my own. There's little doubt in my mind that a UVA frat is the kind of place that has more than the average number of assholes and psychopaths. But the story of seven guys attacking the alleged victim without preamble for hours on end with a party going on downstairs, referring to her as 'it' and so on...it does strain credulity a bit. My credulity, at any rate. That may, of course, be wishful thinking. As terrible as a false accusation of rape is, that's the best-case scenario here. Then there is the strange account of her friends, immediately after the alleged gang rape, attempting to talk her out of calling the police on the grounds that it would harm her social standing. She also claims that she was attacked on the Corner for having spoken out about the incident, and that her alleged assailant threw a bottle at her, breaking it on her face and leaving her bruised and cut. At least these other parts of the story should be verifiable or falsifiable--the friends who came to get her should be able to testify, and one would think that there would be a police report about the bottle incident, or at least some witnesses.
   A fairly quick Googling reveals virtually no skepticism about the account, so perhaps I'm some kind of lunatic outlier.
   Of course innocent until proven guilty is a legal standard, not a moral one, but it seems notable to me that there seems to be a rush to judgment here. Of course it's difficult to hear an account like this without becoming outraged, and it's difficult to believe that someone would make up such a story. I suppose all there is for it is to hope that the truth comes out in some very clear way, and that justice is done, whatever that might come to.

Friday, November 21, 2014

38 Closed Guard BJJ Combinations In 4 Minutes

Some of these are really sneaky.

BENGHAZI BENGHAZI BENGHAZI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111

Sooo....will they just keep screeching about Benghazi anyway? Or maybe revert back to Fast and Furious or Solyndra...or Whitewater or Troopergate or...whatever...?

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Inequality, Unbelievably, Gets Worse

Well that's just great.

Harvard, Carolina Sued Over Race-Based Admissions

This issue makes me want to go cower in the corner.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Anti-Authoritarian Calisthenics

   aka "anarchist calisthenics."
   Along similar lines, I sometimes tell my students: you need to be prepared to tell people to go to hell when necessary...

   (h/t Armenius Apoplexis)