Ruby Tuesday Ethics Round-Up, 1/21/2020: The Boy Scouts Are Going Down, Curtis Flowers Is Getting Out, And David Hogg Is Still An Ignorant Yutz

Good morning, everybody!

Good morning, Mick!

It’s disturbing how things get planted in my head: I couldn’t get the Rolling Stones out of it after someone commented, in reaction to an observation that we had another anti-Trump freakout looming when Justice Ginsberg dies, to the effect that she was the Keith Richards of the Supreme Court. Okay, but she has to leave us sometime,  as do we all, and I would bet that she cannot last another four years. I don’t even like to think about how low Democrats, the “resistance” and the news media will go to try to block the confirmation of a conservative replacement, or the hysteria that will follow.

1. The Lesson: organizations tend to act to protect themselves, not the victims of their misconduct. The Boy Scouts of America may face bankruptcy as lawsuits alleging sexual abuse by leaders and volunteers proliferate. The crisis is greatly aggravated by the loosening statutes of limitations across the country. The District of Columbia  eliminated the statute of limitations that restricted  the time for sexual abuse survivors to pursue civil litigation,  and created a two-year window for survivors under the age of 40 to file suit regardless of the date of the incident.  Accordingly,  Abused in Scouting filed suit in Washington, D.C., on behalf of eight men who say they were victimized as boys by Scout leaders and volunteers. The same process is going on in California, where similar suits are underway by 14 plaintiffs. California’s Assembly Bill 218 just kicked in on January 1, like D.C.’s law allowing victims of child sexual assault to file suit until age 40 and opening a three-year window for those abused as children to sue for past incidents.  Many more states have or soon will follow suit.

This appears to be ready to follow the awful path of the Catholic Church’s child molestation scandal, with similar evidence of cover-ups. The BSOA are a lot smaller than the Church, but they also have far less money to pay in multi-million dollar court settlements. It didn’t take a lot of imagination to see this coming, and the Scouts were already in trouble, with a blurring mission, falling membership and gender issues.

The Boy Scouts saved my father’s life, as I’ve related on Ethics Alarms elsewhere. I’m glad he didn’t live to see this.

2. No, better late than never doesn’t begin to cover this. I have written two posts about the persecution of murder suspect Curtis Flowers, To refresh your recollections, here’s a snippet from a 2018 post:

After 22 years of trials, mistrials and reversals, Flowers has faced juries six times for the same crime. He has been on death row since the first conviction, and the most recent one is being appealed. Many believe he is innocent. I think it can be stipulated that this has been a badly botched prosecution, whether Flowers is innocent or not. There is no limit on how many times someone can be tried for the same crime, as long as the trials end in mistrials or convictions. The Flowers case suggests that we need a limit. If the system can’t get a conviction properly after a reasonable number of attempts—I don’t know what a reasonable number is, but I am confident that it is less than six—then the accused should go free. So far, Flowers has been in prison for over two decades without being convicted. That’s wrong.

Now, at long last, Doug Evans, the obsessed and incompetent prosecutor (he may also be a racist, since he is white and Flowers is black, and yes, this is Mississippi, but Hanlon’s Razor applies has voluntarily recused himself from future involvement in Flowers’ case. This probably means that there will not be a seventh trial, and that Flowers, who is currently free on bail, will go free.  Then I would like to see Evans lose his job and law license.

3. Somebody please set this arrogant twerp up with Greta Thunberg and maybe they’ll get hitched and move to Europe...The news media, Virginia’s governor and  the antigun-mad social media mob thoroughly disgraced themselves over the Second Amendment rally yesterday, smearing law abiding Americans who sought to signal their disapproval of Virginia’s onrushing attempt to strip away Second Amendment rights in the state. Especially vocal was self-righteous gun ignoramus David Hogg, now a Harvard student (Update: my diploma is still turned to the wall), who demonstrated  why his admission was ridiculous (surely there are a few thousand Asian-American  students who are better qualified?) by tweeting out one dumb and dishonest attack on the demonstrators after another, like:

  • “VA is in a state of emergency because white supremacists and nazi’s are using their 2nd amendment rights to shutdown the 1st amendment rights of students, veterans, and clergy.”

True, Hogg was only aping the fake news being issued all day by CNN, MSNBC and others, but the rally was not made up of “white supremacists and Nazis” (there’s no apostrophe in “Nazis,” you idiot), but just normal, patriotic, democracy-loving, tax-paying citizens of all races who want to continue to benefit from the Bill of Rights. The “emergency” was a revolting effort by Governor Northam to pretend that a large group of Second Amendment supporters would be violent. Then there was this:

  • “17 y/o Trayvon Martin was shot on his way to get some skittles. Yet there are thousands of white men able to march around openly caring assault weapons on Capitol grounds. This is not about self-defense it’s about the enforcement of white supremacy.”

Where to begin?  Hogg is recycling the completely false narrative that has been thoroughly debunked in every respect. How much more false information can you pack into 12 words? Martin was shot in self-defense after jumping a smaller man and while trying to bang his head into pulp. Then Hogg really starts lying. The demonstrators were neither all male nor all white. They were not carrying “assault weapons,” but then poor David has never learned anything about the subject of his rants. And “white supremacy” had nothing to do with the event.

Other than that, good job, David. That kind of accuracy is worth at least a B+ where you’re going to school.

 

23 thoughts on “Ruby Tuesday Ethics Round-Up, 1/21/2020: The Boy Scouts Are Going Down, Curtis Flowers Is Getting Out, And David Hogg Is Still An Ignorant Yutz

  1. The average GPA at Harvard, last I checked, was an A-. (Data about 6 years old.)

    No disrespect Jack, but many of the elite schools now behave like clubs. If you’re (allegedly) worthy of getting in, you’re worthy of the grade.

  2. Watch Justice Ginsburg announce her retirement this year so that the Democrats can see if the Republicans still maintain that justices shouldn’t be replaced during a national election year (I’d still love to see President Trump nominate Merrick Garland – just to see the Left’s head explode).

    1. It’s unfortunate. The BSA has done so much good, but it had the responsibility to protect the children under its care more than it had the responsibility to protect itself.

    3. David is learning from the Nazis that, if you repeat a lie loudly and often enough, it becomes the truth. This has been a Democratic strategy for years now.

    And yet they keep wanting us to believe that it’s the Republican Party that mimics the Nazis.

    • 1. It’s unfortunate. The BSA has done so much good, but it had the responsibility to protect the children under its care more than it had the responsibility to protect itself.

      Have there been any allegations of abuse that happened after 2005?

      I give no credibility to people who wait half a century to come forward.

      • Oh sure there have. That’s what prompted the change.
        The statutes of limitation represents tradeoffs, and they always have. The views on what balance was iela were bound to change after the Catholic Church mess, and such situations as Bill Cosby stream of sexual assaults.

        • The whole thing with Brett Kavanaugh reinforces my beliefs that the statute of limitations (when the victim is a minor) should be the victim’s twenty-sixth birthday, if the victim had filed a formal report by the twenty-fifth birthday.

          Allegations of abuse published decades after the fact should be ignored; we need to focus on abuse that is happening today.

  3. Hogg writes: “VA is in a state of emergency because white supremacists and nazi’s are using their 2nd amendment rights to shutdown the 1st amendment rights of students, veterans, and clergy.”

    From The Root:

    This Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It’s a day of remembrance when we honor one of the most renowned civil rights leaders in U.S. history. A man who certainly stood for peace, but, most of all, equality and justice. A man who is often made out to be synonymous with non-violent protest. In Richmond, Va., on the state capitol, a massive event has been planned that will be perfectly appropriate to commemorate King and celebrate his legacy.

    Nah, I’m just messin’ with you—they’re having a gun rally with white supremacist neo-Nazis and shit.

    Ha’Aretz:

    State officials and U.S. hate-monitoring groups are warning about the potential for violence ahead of a gun-rights rally in Virginia that’s expected to draw a mix of militias, firearms advocates and white supremacists to Richmond.

    Citing credible threats of violence, Gov. Ralph Northam declared a temporary state of emergency days ahead of Monday’s rally, banning all weapons, including guns, from Capitol Square.

    Kathleen Belew (“Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America”):

    Questions

    How shall a ‘confused narrative’ be sorted through? It is true that the Virginia First Amendment Rally is composed of ‘law-abiding citizens’. What, were people expecting armed felons? It is also true that those who attended the Charlottesville rally were similarly ‘law-abiding citizens’. There were dozens of groups who came out because a monument was threatened, and many of them are involved in *discomfiting* ideas and viewpoints that have arisen out of different motives, but which are largely oppositional to government policies, the collusion of government in the suppression of critical ideas, the advance of hyper-progressive ideas and ideologies, and in defense of an ‘older America’ that is being threatened by a rising generation and demographic which is changing the *face* of America. You have to be aware that many of these groups have rather radical positions. And if you trace their views and their ideology you will note that the lines sometimes go back to ideas, ideologies and movements that are socially (and politically) condemned.

    For this reason Belew’s book “Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America” is not a bad source for information. But it all depends on how you read it. Her position is that these people and groups are *bad* or *evil* and must be suppressed. Therefore, she can be brought out when people who do not at all relate to the ideology and ideas many in the Opposition Movement today (this would include many of the groups and people who attended in Virginia) and she can contribute to exciting their paranoia, or their *justified concerns* about an identity movement that is forming — that is coming out of the closet to use an unfortunate metaphor).

    But if you must know, that is if you want accurate information so to be able to form accurate views, many of those groups and those people are tending toward ideas which are counter-establishment. So, when these articles speak about the ideas and opinions that are discussed (or perhaps ‘blurted’ is a better word?) on the on-line forums, you will find that many of them do indeed say things, and think things, that *you* might not like. They are concerned about things like race, immigration, government excess, political control of opinion, attacks on social media, blacklisting, banning, defunding and all the rest: all the issues that are issues of concern for the Dissident Right.

    They are — logically, if you understand their logic and the way their minds work and their perception-system is built — alarmed by ‘white supremacy’, but here you have to stop and linger over this term. Any defense of whites as whites, any declaration of *value* of whites as whites, any conversation in which ‘whiteness’ is taken as a valid topic of concern, and certainly if ‘white wellbeing’ is privileged as a concept: all of this and much more (Eurocentrism, even European Christianity, art, literature . . .) is understood to be, and is described as, white supremacism in embryo or in clandestine form.

    These people are dealing in ‘white supremacism’ if you can successfully, but with a certain internal power and conceptual clarity, translate their own terms from ‘definitions of wickedness’ to necessary and positive self-affirmation.

    It has to be understood that in America today — indeed this extends to the whole world as an extension of America’s hyper-progressive reach — it is not allowed, and it will not be allowed, to focus on those definitions of America that stress its European roots. You are not allowed to conceive of America in this way! You can only think of America as an *idea* and as a *proposition* that you join or are brought into. But by doing that you must surrender, if I can put it like this, your terrestrial identification, your terrestrial self. This is a primary tenet of today’s Americanism. And one can also notice its even more developed form in Canada.

    What I notice is how very difficult it is to sort through the *narratives* and the *spin*. It can be done — at least I hope so — but it is excruciating and even agonizing.

    • The Charlottesville demonstration was organized by a white supremacist group. The Richmond demonstration was organized by a Virginia gun rights group. Gun rights groups are not white supremacy groups. It’s pretty simple, really. There’s no confusion unless someone sets out to make it confusing.

      • ‘White supremacist’ is not the appropriate term because those who advocate for what Unite the Right advocate for, do not define themselves as supremacist. The term — I think this is obvious, you might differ — is one of those ‘hot terms’ that the Progressive-Left, and some radical and some moderate factions also, use to characterize a wide movement: to brand it in such a way that it is put outside the pale: made inconsiderable, made ‘deplorable’. One does not dedicate time to trying to understand what is deplorable, one shuns them. That is how these terms function. That is there function.

        I am trying to draw to *your* attention that there is a wide and developing opposition movement in the US which is largely situated within white and European-descended groups of Americans. This movement is not without ‘roots’ in American culture, and these roots (as I said) extend back in time, in history, and in culture, to some groups (not all, but some) that *you* would not like. That is, those whose views and ideology are not permitted in this American present.

        It is true that the Virginia rally was organized by a First Amendment rights group. My assertion is that this this group has links and relationships to some of the same groups that attended the Unite the Right rally.

        The reasons why this is so, are the topics that interest me. That is to say, the discontent, the *anxiety* they feel has to do with similar issues.

        It’s pretty simple, really.

        I agree that if your statement were true, it would be simple.

        “The gun rights rally was not organized by a ‘problematic group’ and therefore there is nothing problematic about it” is what I take you to mean.

        But your statement is not fully true and is partially false. People with varying affiliations and ideas/sentiments attended and these ideas/sentiments connect to wide social phenomena. These social issues within the culture — and here I will say within the white demographic — are not simple. They are complex. It requires study to understand them.

        Not paranoid assumptions, and not necessarily acceptance of their ideology or view, but a clear view of how they have come to be, and why. (That is my endeavor).

  4. Ginsburg was asked once when there would be enough women on the Supreme Court. Her answer was “When there are nine.” I believe the answer to your question as to how low will her supporters go to block a conservative replacement will be the same “as low as it takes.” They know this is a fight for all the marbles, and there is no limit to what they’ll do to make certain she is not replaced by a conservative.

    1. I already said plenty about my time in the Scouts, but, much as I learned and as much as it enhanced my resume for college (which is why a lot of boys did it in the first place), there was always an undercurrent of bullying and mistreatment, like bigger boys saying things to each other like “Hey, his shirt’s dirty, do you think we should give it a wash? I think so!” before throwing a smaller kid in the lake with his clothes on, and the adults shrugging afterwards that this was just how you grew up. Some of the adults were just as bad, like one old fart who would always pull kids’ shirts out of their pants or give them fingerprints on their glasses, but then threaten to knock them down if they resisted. I saw him a few years ago (I was in my 30s), confronted him, and asked him if would like to try picking on me then and see what happened. He didn’t take me up on the challenge. I’m all for camaraderie building, but not providing jerks with a steady supply of smaller, weaker victims who can’t fight back, while the leaders stand around, drink coffee, smoke, and laugh, saying “boys will be boys.”

    3. The left is big into linking issues. If you go on a site for one of the groups opposed to the war on terror you will usually see mention of gender issues, racism issues, poverty issues, environmentalism issues, and so on, like the left is opposed to everything that’s wrong with the world. You will also see the left linking most policy positions favored by the right (aggressive foreign policy, less restrained capitalism, free speech, religious freedom, the right to bear arms, strong policing, etc.) with one another and then trying to link them all with racism and hate. The idea is they want to show that the right stands FOR everything that’s wrong with the world. It’s that much easier to attack someone if he dares voice anything vaguely supportive of any of those positions, because it must mean he’s everything that’s wrong with the world.

      • Yes, but I think that’s slightly different than what I’m talking about here. I hope I’m not just the absent minded professor who walks into the pharmacy and asks for some prepared monaster of salicylic acid.

  5. Heh. When I read the email message body but before I read the post, I was thinking to myself that Hogg should hook up with Thunberg to create the World’s Most Arrogant, Ignorant and Annoying (would it be an Ad Hominem attack to add “Least Physically Attractive”?) Power Couple. I was even thinking of a reply to that effect.

    Not the first time I’ve been scooped….

  6. The Boy Scouts of America may face bankruptcy as lawsuits alleging sexual abuse by leaders and volunteers proliferate. The crisis is greatly aggravated by the loosening statutes of limitations across the country. The District of Columbia eliminated the statute of limitations that restricted the time for sexual abuse survivors to pursue civil litigation, and created a two-year window for survivors under the age of 40 to file suit regardless of the date of the incident.

    to say that the crisis is greatly aggravated by the “loosening statutes of limitations across the country” is quite an understatement.

    The crisis exists only because legislators, lobbied by trial lawyers,. loosened the statutes of limitations retroactively.

    And on this, I cry foul.

    Here is the money quote from the article.

    One man told of sexual abuse starting when he was 10.

    Another man reported he was sexually abused as a teenager.

    A third said he was sexually abused from the age of 11 on.

    All three incidents have two other things in common: They date back half a century, and the men accused were Scoutmasters, the adult leaders of Boy Scout troops.

    And another quote.

    The suits contain allegations that span decades, from the mid-1960s to the late 1980s.

    Some of these allegations are older than Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

    Here is what you wrote about victims coming forward too late.

    https://ethicsalarms.com/2018/09/28/ethics-morning-sickness-9-29-2018-the-ford-kavanaugh-hearing-hangover/

    Then they lose their chance. There are a lot of things in life like that. If I’m reluctant to speak up and challenge a mob harassing a US Senator while he’s dining with my family, I can’t wait 20 years and do it then, can I? If you are afraid to report a community criminal when you have evidence against him because you’re afraid to snitch, it’s no mitigation to report the evidence after more people have been hurt because of your delay. How about women who don’t stop their boyfriends from sexually molesting their children because they are afraid? Is it acceptable that they wait until the Statute of Limitations has run, the damage has been done, and the kids are grown and molesting children themselves before they speak up?

    You don’t have to remind me of the dilemma. I’m sorry, but I am really sick of this argument…It’s an excuse and a rationalization. It makes fairness and due process impossible, and it allows false accusers to manipulate others. Three decades? Holding a complaint until the exact moment when it can’t be defended against AND will do the most damage?

    (emphases added)

    there is no “except for the Boy Scouts” exception to this principle. These people waited too long, and it is unethical and immoral for the state to have made it possible for them to sue.

    Real victims do not wait half a century.

    Elizabeth Smart certainly did not wait half a century.

    Nechemya Weberman’s victims certainly did not wait half a century.

    This ethical principle of accusers losing their chance if they wait too long must apply universally and equally to all types of accuser and all types of accused.

  7. Where to begin? Hogg is recycling the completely false narrative that has been thoroughly debunked in every respect. How much more false information can you pack into 12 words? Martin was shot in self-defense after jumping a smaller man and while trying to bang his head into pulp. Then Hogg really starts lying. The demonstrators were neither all male nor all white. They were not carrying “assault weapons,” but then poor David has never learned anything about the subject of his rants. And “white supremacy” had nothing to do with the event.

    I understand where his biases come from.

    He grew up in a gang-infested shithole where children were regularly shot dead on the streets by super predator gangbangers like Nikolas Cruz, merely for the shoes that they wore or for wearing the wrong color clothes.

    this of course does not excuse his words or his actions.

    But what about the leadership and spokesholes of the anti-gun cult, nevermind the Virginia legislators?

    My longtime Usenet ally Christopher Charles Morton, a native of Chicago, Illinois, a veteran of the United States Army, and a current resident of Rocky River, Ohio, noted this.

    The history of gun control in North America is the history of violent White supremacism and the efforts of its proponents to achieve a “safe working environment” for themselves. After all, where’s the fun in a lynching or race riot if there’s no guarantee of who’s going to end up dead when things shake out?

  8. I know three brothers whose father died when they were young. They also say that scouting basically saved their lives, and they are good men today. I love the idea of helping boys learn positive masculine traits. It’s needed now more than ever.

    But I’m thinking that it can’t work to have organizations that pair up groups of boys with men who aren’t their dads. At least not without some pretty stringent rules. There is more perversion out there than people like to admit.

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