How Difficult Is It to Bruise a Backside?

Filed under:Mothering,Priorities,Sad — posted by Anwyn on June 12, 2008 @ 10:32 am

Update: Shorter, corrected, clearer me: Either 1) IMO, Indiana’s standard of child abuse is too narrowly focused on the severity and longevity of bruises caused on the child to the exclusion of the emotional and psychological harm to the child through the mother’s causing such bruises in the first place or 2) The standard does include this kind of harm but the prosecutors failed to prove it in this case, which seems incredible to me based merely on the facts of the article. (Update x3: Also, my inner jury is still out on whether I think any punishment that results in bruises at all should automatically rise to the level of abuse and thus IN’s standard is too low to begin with, but I lean toward “of course, yeah.”) Xrlq has called bullshit on almost all of my amateur attempts to question the legal nuance here, and I defer completely to him on those points. I’d probably make a pretty crappy lawyer. But I stand by my conclusion that there is serious and permanent harm done to a child who understands that his mother is willing to bruise him and a radically ignorant mother who could not foresee such bruising based on the implement–whether belt or extension cord–that she chose to use to spank an 11-year-old boy.


Update x2: Anybody notice how I’m getting a swell series of little snapshot legal lessons by writing something inane and then inviting Xrlq over here to shred it for me? Pretty cunning, don’tchathink?

*** (more…)


Filed under:Sad — posted by Anwyn on June 8, 2008 @ 7:33 pm

I don’t, not much, not as much as I should, but Rachel Lucas says there’s a good man in need of prayer–her boyfriend’s father, Joe, who was hit head-on while riding his motorcycle by a car that came into his lane. His injuries sound gruesome and potentially life-changing, although, thankfully, perhaps not life-threatening. Her description of his wreck was enough to raise my hair and I hope the instigator is punished to the extent of the law. Also that some people who are idiots stupid enough to leave contrary comments on a post like this (see update to second link (Update: And here–even bigger idiot alert)) eventually see themselves as others see them–pretty fitting punishment for anybody, but especially appropriate for people like that.

Robert Knox, Actor in Forthcoming Harry Potter Movie, Stabbed to Death

Filed under:Movies,Priorities,Sad — posted by Anwyn on May 24, 2008 @ 7:57 pm

Protecting his younger brother from a knife-wielding thug.

Judging by some of the facts laid down in the story, it appears knives are becoming guns in Britain. Knives are a lot easier to use, people, and a lot harder to ban. Unintended consequences of gun bans go on and on.

I have a British friend, husband of a friend I love dearly, who during dinner at my house actually uttered the sentence “You Americans have too many freedoms. Like guns, and that.” I swallowed my rejoinders and acted the hostess. But thugs and crazies, inexplicably, it seems, continue to find a way, even in Britain. It is not our freedoms that are the problem. The Bible can be paraphrased: Outlaws and nuts you will always have with you. And that’s why we ought always to have our guns, as well.

RIP, Rob Knox.


Filed under:Sad — posted by Anwyn on May 7, 2008 @ 2:43 pm

Man dies shielding his daughter from a car that jumped the sidewalk because its asshole driver was high. RIP, Joseph Richardson.

Horses Too Young to Run for the Roses

Filed under:Sad,Sports — posted by Anwyn on May 5, 2008 @ 5:07 pm

I was out doing errands while they ran the Kentucky Derby. Little Bean and Daddyman were watching at home. The Bean once went several months racing us everywhere, calling himself Seattle Slew, me Affirmed, his father Secretariat. The two of them are interested in the horses and their names and what races they win. I was horrified when I called home and was told that the horse of The Bean’s choice, Eight Belles, had had “an accident” on the track and broken both ankles after coming in second. Me, anxiously: “What did they do for her?” Daddyman, conscious of The Bean’s listening ears close by: “Well, they pulled the horsey ambulance around to the track and … took care of it … right there.” The Bean knew nothing of what “took care of it” meant, even when the TV announcers used the word “euthanized.” Fortunately he didn’t think to ask about that long-tailed word’s meaning.

And I spent the rest of the day thinking there must be something wrong with horse racing, even if I personally don’t know exactly what it is, and that maybe people shouldn’t race horses like this.

Turns out it’s true, people shouldn’t race horses like this:

Eight Belles was three-years old and 17 hands high. The average amateur, like me, wouldn’t even start jumping her until she was five because her bones haven’t finished developing. Am I smarter than the megabuck owners and trainers? I’d have to say “yes.” Just look at the outcome.

I got Lucy, my fat Thoroughbred who flunked out of racehorse training when she was two, on the New Year’s weekend when she turned three. I treated her like a baby. She was a baby and didn’t finish growing until she was past five. I didn’t start jumping her until she was five. This is considered common sense.

I don’t have much sympathy for animal rights groups, but I do have a lot of sympathy for animals and concern over their treatment at human hands. I’m relieved to find that it’s not racing as a practice that is abusive, still a bit on the fence about whether racing as a practice is abusive, but relieved to find that what seems to cause these shocking deaths is not racing, but the racing of horses before their time. The destruction of these beautiful animals is terrible. Read Anne’s whole piece if you were shocked by the fate of Derby runner-up Eight Belles, and remember that human skull bones don’t fully fuse until we’re over twenty years old. Over twenty! Allowing the horses’ bones to set hard before they’re put through these paces is the least race owners, trainers, and jockeys can do.


Filed under:It's My Life,Sad — posted by Anwyn on March 20, 2008 @ 11:57 pm

My son’s paternal grandfather has passed away. We’ll all be away coping with that for a while. Be well.

Memo to Obama: The Race Thing is Secondary

Filed under:Jerks,Politics,Sad — posted by Anwyn on March 18, 2008 @ 8:47 am

Obama’s speech about race described Wright’s “incendiary” comments as not only “wrong” but also “divisive,” which is, of course, the most negative word Obama has. If anything’s divisive, then it’s horrible, never mind whether it’s correct, true, applicable, outright fabrications and lies or completely batshit insane. Which brings me back to Wright. Memo to Obama: Wright isn’t a problem for you because he dislikes White America and says so vehemently; Wright is a problem for you because of his batshit insanity–that [White] America “started the AIDS virus;” that the [white] government “gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strikes law and then wants us to sing ‘God Bless America’ … God Damn America, that’s in the Bible …”

Tell me, Obama, if your pastor couldn’t even drop his race-fueled conspiracy theories on the Sunday immediately after 9/11, when exactly was he not blaming the [white] government for all the problems of black people? Not ever, is the answer, because only somebody deeply embedded in the notion that our government is a vast conspiracy to keep third-world nations in “grinding poverty” would, immediately after the cold-blooded killing of 3,000 innocent citizens, describe the act as “chickens coming home to roost.”

If Obama should somehow rally and be elected president, it’ll be interesting to see how fast he drops “divisive” as the bitterest epithet and moves on to “this is for your own good” when many of us start to feel alienated and “divided” by government-mishandled “health care,” government-bloated “education” and all the other goodies he has in store for us. Those policies are divisive because they aim to bring us all together into “one size fits all” government malfeasance–not by conspiracy but by design.

Update: Ace, pithy as ever:

My takeaway: White racism is pernicious and bad and we must correct it. We must learn.

Black racism, on the other hand, is perfectly understandable, justified even, and blacks get to keep on hatin’ for as long as they might like.

Obama, of course, will one day change all this.

But he didn’t change the heart of Wright when he had the chance. Nor even is there any evidence whatsoever he even attempted such an undertaking.

So Obama is sold to us as biracial, transracial, postracial. A new kind of black candidate.

And yet he seems to look precisely like the old sort of black candidate, the Jesse Jackson type, the Al Sharpton type.

All that (definitely read the whole thing) plus no mention at all by Obama about the insane conspiracy thinking Wright’s racism has led him to. I repeat, it’s not just the racism–which, after all, is the kind of garden-variety victimhood we get from Sharpton, Jackson, Nagin, et. al.–but Wright takes it five steps beyond, all the way to the government is deliberately, systematically, oppressing and murdering black people. Because there’s some upside to that, right? Because in Wright’s mind, keeping blacks down is all the upside we need. I guess I was wrong. I guess it’s about the racism after all–and where the years of hatemongering have led: to Wright.

I Know I’m Getting Old

Filed under:Sad — posted by Anwyn on March 11, 2008 @ 10:41 pm

…when they retire a fighter jet that came onto the line when I was a kid. Fare thee well, F-117.

The Air Force decided to accelerate the retirement of the F-117s to free up money to modernize the rest of the fleet. The F-117 is being replaced by the F-22 Raptor, which also has stealth technology.

[Brig. Gen. Gregory] Feest, who is Bandit 261, also led the first stealth fighter mission into Iraq during Desert Storm in 1991. He said the fire from surface-to-air missiles and anti-aircraft guns was so intense that he stopped looking at it to try to ease his fears.

“We knew stealth worked and it would take a lucky shot to hit us, but we knew a lucky shot could hit us at any time,” he said.

Incredibly, not one stealth was hit during those missions, he said.

H/t: J.

That Didn’t Take Long

Filed under:Politics,Sad — posted by Anwyn on February 7, 2008 @ 11:11 am

What, a week since Slublog made me that cool Romney button?

Two Good Reads at TWS

Filed under:Not Cool,Politics,Priorities,Sad — posted by Anwyn on January 27, 2008 @ 7:15 pm

If you want to know how Jena’s nooses and its six-on-one beating came to be related in the public mind even though they weren’t, how it’s plausible that the nooses were never intended as a racial statement at all, how the ringleader of the six is a repeat thug, and who put together the “greater narrative” that the media and the race-baiters swallowed hook, line, and sinker, here it all is in cool, collected detail. (H/t Sarah.)

And if you need comforting over Thompson’s withdrawal from the race: rest glumly assured that it’s because he was every bit as normal as we thought him and not a pandering, lying ignoramus. My favorite passage:

It’s telling that his most notable moments were negative–marked by his refusal to follow some custom of the modern campaign. (From another debate: “Should government step in and help Chrysler and the other auto makers?” Thompson: “No.”) Asked about education reform, he said: “It would be easy enough for someone running for president to say: I have a several-point plan to fix our education problem. It’s not going to happen. And it shouldn’t happen from the Oval Office.” When journalists and candidates, with their typically childlike enthusiasm, suddenly began gumming the word “change” after the Iowa caucuses, Thompson pointed out the obvious: “Change has been part of every election since the dawn of elections, if you weren’t an incumbent.” He noted how easy it was “to demagogue” the issue of federal spending by dwelling on relatively insignificant earmarks: “All these programs that we talk about in the news every day are a thimbleful in the ocean compared to the entitlement tsunami that’s coming to hit us.”

Views like these might have earned another candidate a reputation for “straight talk”–maybe even the title of “maverick.” But Thompson was more subversive than that; he was an existential maverick, and his campaign was an implicit rebuke to the system in its entirety. He was a man out of his time. With its reduced metabolism and procedural modesty, his campaign still might have served as an illustration of what politics once was like and–if we have the audacity to hope–might be again. After all, by the standards of a century ago, Thompson was a whirligig.

Brave, Beautiful Mother

Filed under:Mothering,Sad — posted by Anwyn on January 25, 2008 @ 2:25 pm

Lorraine Allard delayed cancer treatment so that her unborn son might live. She died two months after he was born. She was my age. RIP.

Somebody Explain to Me

Filed under:Sad,Sports — posted by Anwyn on January 11, 2008 @ 9:44 am

…why baseball players are not facing the same penalties. Why they are not being asked about their substance abuse by federal prosecutors instead of by useless congressional committees. Why the judge felt it fit to sic the maximum sentence on a nursing mother when Barry Bonds is going scot-free. Why he thinks popping a female track star into prison is going to deter male baseball players who have been getting away with it for years.

If this stuff is illegal, prosecute. Everybody. If it is not, don’t sic federal prosecutors selectively and then slap on jail time for the lying.

That Marion Jones should serve time for lying to federal prosecutors, I don’t doubt. That there are, seemingly, some pretty heavy inequities here before the law, I do believe. The whole thing is disgusting.

So Wrong, for the Right Reasons

Filed under:Sad,Television — posted by Anwyn on December 4, 2007 @ 9:02 pm

Maksim Chmerkovskiy won’t return to Dancing with the Stars next season.

Talented, hot, and smart into the bargain.

Maks, this woman would have voted for another woman if I’d been able to get my thumbs (or my password) out. I’m sorry. Knock ’em dead back on your native dancing heath.

previous page · next page

image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace