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September 11, 2013

When will Dawkins stop putting his dick in the soup?

Richard Dawkins defends “mild pedophilia,” says it does not cause “lasting harm” - Salon.com
In a recent interview with the Times magazine, Richard Dawkins attempted to defend what he called “mild pedophilia,” which, he says, he personally experienced as a young child and does not believe causes “lasting harm.” Dawkins went on to say that one of his former school masters “pulled me on his knee and put his hand inside my shorts,” and that to condemn this “mild touching up” as sexual abuse today would somehow be unfair. “I am very conscious that you can’t condemn people of an earlier era by the standards of ours. Just as we don’t look back at the 18th and 19th centuries and condemn people for racism in the same way as we would condemn a modern person for racism, I look back a few decades to my childhood and see things like caning, like mild pedophilia, and can’t find it in me to condemn it by the same standards as I or anyone would today,” he said. Plus, he added, though his other classmates also experienced abuse at the hands of this teacher, “I don’t think he did any of us lasting harm.” Child welfare experts responded to Dawkins’ remarks with outrage — and concern over their effect on survivors of abuse.

September 05, 2013

Penny Arcade artist doubles down on attacking rape survivors

Why I'm Never Going Back to Penny Arcade Expo | Underwire | Wired.com
And then on Monday at PAX, in front of an audience of thousands, Krahulik told business manager Robert Khoo that he regretted pulling the Dickwolves merchandise from the Penny Arcade store — merchandise he had created as a “screw you” to rape survivors who had had the temerity to complain about a comic strip. While the audience burst into applause, Khoo nodded sagely and said that now they knew better; now they would just leave it and not engage. Let’s be clear: Making the dickwolves t-shirts in the first place was engaging. So was Krahulik’s decision to draw dickwolves at PA’s make-a-strip demo at PAX and then put on a dickwolves t-shirt and wear it to a Penny Arcade event. These were not neutral choices. Nor, at this point, is the decision to attend, exhibit at, or cover PAX. There is no longer a clear line between uncomfortable silence and complicity — and more members of the gaming and comics communities are beginning to speak out. . . . Cartoonist Rich Stevens of Diesel Sweeties reached out to WIRED when he heard we planned to report on the PAX incident. “It’s just so disappointing to see people I’ve known since we were all new and broke turn out to be such tone-deaf, old man bullies. He’s Rush Limbaugh with tattoos. I could get over the original comic if they’d just moved on or apologized, but they had to make merchandise out of rape just to poke back at people and then encourage fans to wear it to a convention that supposedly has pro-woman policies,” said Stevens. “It’s like he never got the point of growing up having been bullied as a kid. You’re supposed to get older and not repeat it … I wish more people in our field would be open about this, but I think there is a lot of social and economic pressure not to be… I really want to let them know that not everyone in webcomics is scared to stand up to them.” . . .

August 20, 2013

This town is literally exiling homeless people

South Carolina City Approves Plan To Exile Its Homeless | ThinkProgress
Many homeless people in Columbia, South Carolina are facing an arduous choice: vacate downtown or be arrested. That’s because last week, the Columbia City Council unanimously approved a new plan — the Emergency Homeless Response” — to remove homeless people from the downtown business district. Here’s how the initiative, which was spearheaded by Councilman Cameron Runyan (D), will work. Police officers will now be assigned to patrol the city center and keep homeless people out. They will also be instructed to strictly enforce the city’s “quality of life” laws, including bans on loitering, public urination, and other violations. And just to ensure that no one slips through, the city will set up a hotline so local businesses and residents can report the presence of a homeless person to police. In order to accommodate all the homeless people who will now be banned from downtown, the city will partner with a local charity to keep an emergency shelter on the outskirts of town open 24 hours a day. However, it’s unlikely the shelter, which can handle 240 guests, will be enough to handle the local homeless population, which numbers more than six times the available beds. . . .