Thursday, July 26, 2012

Olympics Takes A Stand

Papachristou, triple jumper, June 29th, 2012

People in the spotlight never learn that what they type on social networking sites can have serious consequences. Even people that are unknown to the mass public online know that one tweet can get them fired from their jobs. However, their tweets (in comparison to celebs and public figures) is unlikely to go viral and create a huge moral outrage.

Voula Papachristou sent some tweets about Africans and West Nile and was subsequently banned from the Olympics. The triple jumper ducked after some criticisms and was taken out of the London Olympics. She's now bitter and upset. Think how bitter and upset the African community is. If there were little consequences, it would be communicated to the public that this type of behaviour is condoned. 

The 23 year-old tweeted, "With so many Africans in Greece, the West Nile mosquitoes will be getting home food!!!" in response to West Nile mosquitos in Athens "as a joke". Stupid move.
Seems Papachristou is not much of a comedian. She has also retweeted Ilias Kasidiaris, the spokeperson for Golden Dawn who became notorious for hitting a woman Communist law maker and throw water at another woman who was a legislator. By the way, he wants to sue his victims for defamation of character. He said that his victims provoked the attack. Umm... No.

Papachristou initially reacted to criticisms by tweeting, "That's how I am. I laugh. I am not a CD to get stuck!!! And if I make mistakes, I don't press the replay! I press Play and move on!!!"

It seems she's a contradiction and went back on her "I don't press replay" because she has since erased those tweets hoping for a clean slate. Unfortuately, she had insulted the character that was trying to be maintained by the Olympics. 

The tweets could be deemed as the opinion(s) of the account holder. However, when you are involved with and a part of a large corporation, when you have the status of a public figure or a celebrity, you cannot remove yourself from the repercussions of your "opinions". Papachristou insulted her fellow African competitors and the Olympics are showing that this behaviour will not be tolerated. After her controversial tweets on Sunday, she sent out six tweets on Wednesdays within two hours as an apology. 

She stated, "After so many years of hurt and sacrifices to try and get to my first Olympics I am very bitter and upset. But what has upset me the most is the excessive reaction and speed of the disciplinary decision."
Well after so many years of hurt and sacrifice, you'd think you wouldn't jeopardize all of that by making stupid moves. Her reaction to the excessive and speed of the disciplinary action makes me laugh. Did she think she would get a trial?

This is another thing that in irritating about people in the spotlight. Although they cause the controversy online, like Twitter, they restrict their apology ONLY to Twitter. Yes, Twitter reaches to millions in an instant. But how sincere is the apology when you type within 140 characters? In Papachristou's case, the maximum characters in her apology were 840, and that includes generously giving her credits of spaces and punctuations.

Instead of involving yourself in Twitter beef and misjudging your actions and trying to erase them later... Why not just do your job? It's one thing to have an opinion, and it is most likely that political opinions can be super charged. But Papchristou's were "meant as a joke" and a good amount of people didn't find it very funny. 

Papachristou's expulsion has been supported by the Hellenic Olympic Committee as well as Greece's track and field federation (SEGAS)

Her coach, Georgi Pomaski, stated that although the decision was understandable, it was harsh for "a kid we're trying to educate". 
Let's be real, 23 years of age IS young, but she is not a child. We expect much from a 23 year old... they can vote, drink, attend college/university, pay rent, pay taxes and have children. She is NOT a child.

Mind Under Matter

FRANCE-- Housing Minister Cecile Duflot wore this dress while speaking at France's National Assembly. As soon as she stood to speak, male legislators began hooting and catcalling. They heckled her while she was speaking, refusing to listen to her words and focusing on her body.

Sadly, the male legislators find there was nothing wrong with their behaviour. They claimed that she was just being admired. Newsflash dumbasses, France's National Assembly is not a runway show and Duflot is no supermodel. Instead of admiring her body, which had NOTHING to do with the assembly, the right thing to do would have been to listen to her speech. If the male legislators weren't sexually harassing her, if they weren't humiliating her, and if they were just admiring, then could they recall the content of her speech?
Bet they couldn't.

This isn't the first time that a woman in politics received more attention of her body than her mind. Both Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton received more press about they womanhood, bodies and image more than their political standpoint. Clinton was criticized for "distracting the men" with her cleavage after where a low cut v-neck shirt... because, you know, we're supposed to control their sexual urges... Michelle Obama is often the focus of men's face book and twitter uploads/status updates on how "hot" she is, and how she "can get it", more than they pay attention to her work.

How about the male legislators control their penises (the one in their pants and the one in their brains) and focus elsewhere.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Abuse of Authority

This may be news for some people, but many of us know far too well and are quite familiar with crimes such as this. In London, Ontario, Andrew Michalski, 31, has been a force member for eleven years. He has been charged with three counts of sexual assaults involving two women between June 2011 and June of this year. 
This is an example of how people that are in a position of authority in our community abuse their status and power to bring upon sexual force. The question is, how much justice the victims actually get when the accused is someone of authority like a police officer? 

Back in 2008 in Ottawa, Stacy Bonds was walking to a friend's house when police had stopped her. Police claim that she was drinking while walking, yet no alcohol was collected by the police as evidence. Bonds was let go, and on her way out she asked why she was even stopped in the first place. Police then began what you see in this following video:

Viral video shows Bonds was restrained by officers, she was kneed, her hair pulled, forced to the ground, while her bra and shirt were cut off with scissors and she was strip searched. She was left topless in her cell, with soiled underwear for three hours. 

Sergeant Steve Desjourdy faces charges of sexual assault, but maintains the claims that he is not guilty of any crime. The case is now before the courts, and Bonds is suing Ottawa police for 1.2 million dollars. Desjourdy was assigned desk duty, but three months after the incident, he was reinstated back to Sergeant for excellent history of supervisor/leadership and references.

In March of 2011, it has been reported that 42 Division (Scarborough, Ontario) officer of 7 months, Brandon Fraser, admitted to having sex with a 14 year old boy as well as a 16 year old boy between 2009 and 2010, both whom he had met over the internet. Fraser was sentenced to 14 days in jail, one year probation, and will be registered as a sex offender for 10 years. I'm pretty sure I've heard of individuals that received a harsher sentence for more minor crimes... Haven't you?

Fraser's lawyer stated that the charges have nothing to do with his job as a police officer. Um, actually in does.
Think about it. I work in a daycare. If I am charged with abusing or neglecting my own children, doesn't that reflect how I may have treated the children at work? 
Fraser's a predator and he definitely preyed over the two young boys and had every intent to do so by seeking his prey over the internet. As police officer, aren't you suppose to protect and serve? Or is that just when the uniform is on?

If the justice system is lenient on police officers when they abuse their authority, then what is to stop many of them from committing crimes? Isn't that just enabling those tempted officers to break the law because they're protected by the badge?

Sexual Assault in Canada reports that it isn't only police officers that abuse their power, which many of us know. They also report that it is quite common for government employees to take advantage of the power dynamics, such as probation officers. The big question for them is, should the government be liable for their employee's wrongful actions?

The main "test" involves these criterias:

1. the opportunity that the enterprise afforded the employee to abuse his power

2. the extent to which the wrongful act may have furthered the employer's aims

3. the extent to which the wrongful act was related to friction, confrontation or intimacy inherent in the employer’s enterprise

4. the extent of power conferred on the employee in relation to the victim; and

5. the vulnerability of potential victims to wrongful exercise of the employee’s power 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Take It To Twitter

Savannah Dietrich, 17, from Kentucky was a victim of sexual assault back in August 2011. She had attended a social gathering where she passed out after consuming alcohol. Two boys, whom she knew, decided to take advantage of Dietrich's passed out body, sexually assault her in front of an audience who don't seem to be so bright, and take/share photos of the assault with others.

Dietrich was frustrated because the boys, who pleaded guilty to the charges, were given a leniency with a plea bargain, which she and her family were unaware of after announcing in court. She took to Twitter and released the names of the accused in a tweet. Now, it has been reported that she was about to face charges of contempt, but the lawyers of the accused decided to drop the charges.
Why was there even a plea bargain?
If you follow the link above to the article by Toronto Star, Chris Klein who is the attorney for one of the boys idiotically says that producing their names on Twitter could be problematic for their future.
Um... Shouldn't they have thought of that BEFORE they decided to sexually assault someone? They're worried about Twitter when they pleaded guilty to sexual assault? Are you serious?

Let's be clear that Dietrich didn't say no. But she's COULDN'T say no, she was passed out. She also DID NOT say YES. Some men and little horny boys tend to assume a YES because that's what they want to hear.

There are two sides of this. Yes, there was an order by the judge in juvenile court that the names of the victim and the accused are not to be released, and the case was not to be discussed. Dietrich and her family wanted her story to be public, so she chose to release her name. Fine.

But what did the law and justice system do for Savannah Dietrich that she should obey the order by the judge? She received no justice.
She was humiliated, assaulted and her body was treated like an artifact in a museum---CORRECTION, artifacts and paintings in a museum can't even be touched. So... we value these artifacts and paintings more than our youth's bodies?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Women and Video Games: You Scared?

I haven't played video games since I was younger-- the last I remember was a Mario game on Nintendo 64. Yeah... I'm way behind.

However... I've never wanted to, and never have, played a stereotypical feminine game such as these.

Gaming companies rely on marketing surveys to tell them what the consumers want, and when faced with criticism for producing these types of games while limiting female gamers into reproductive roles, they simply throw up their hands and say, "We're just giving consumers what they want".

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Gun Violence and Race

Michael de Adder, a freelance cartoonist, was under some fire --- especially via Twitter tonight.
He frequently appears in the Toronto Star, among other papers, and was under some scrutiny about his latest illustration (above).

Monday, July 16, 2012

Parents Put Baby in Carryon Luggage

Authorities at the United Arab Emirates say that at the Sharjah International Airport, Egyptian parents had put their baby in a carryon to avoid a two-day wait for the baby's visa.

Halton Children's Aid Dragon Boat Event

Many of you who know me must know that me + any kind of sports = disaster:

I took tennis lessons when I was younger, for like two months.
I don't play pool because I accidentally hit someone with the pool cue. Is it called a pool cue?
I took swimming lessons only because I wanted to wear water wings when I was little.
I tried soccer, but it was too much running.

...I'm more of the... artistic type.

Many of you who know me also know that I volunteer at the Halton Children's Aid Society so you're bound to read about some events by HCAS on my blog, even if its a sports/recreational event :)

And so, the Rotary Club of Oakville Trafalgar is hosting a Dragon Boat Event on August 12 at Kelso Conservation Area in Milton Ontario. This event generates lots of awareness in the local media.

If you are interested in paddling or volunteering (with me!) please e-mail me ASAP.

Thank you in advance

Twitter: @she_said_so

Police Brutality, No Jailtime

In May of 2009, Police Officer of Rhode Island, Edward Krawetz, kicked a woman he had arrested (Donna Levesque) while she was handcuffed and sitting on a curb.

Rap Cures Stutter

TORONTO- Three years ago, Jake Zeldin arrived home from Summer camp and told his mom he wanted to be a rapper. Most parents would've brushed it off as a phase of a ten year old that was just easily influenced, without a clue of the hardships of making it in the music industry, and just plain infatuated with shining lights and fame. But for Zeldin's mother, it was a different story.

Monday, July 9, 2012

More Sexual Assaults at York U

There have been three reported York U sexual assaults last week. In July of 2011, I wrote about sexual assaults on and around York University and the implications of the campus and the area's security system... or lack thereof, that makes it quite easy for perpetrators to sexually assault women in that area, whether they are residents, students or just passing by.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

No iPads for Iranian-AMERICANS

So... are you from Iran? Yeah, you can't get an iPad.
This also includes people from Cuba, North Korea, Syria and Sudan, regardless if you're in the States on a Visa or an American citizen.