Sunday, November 10, 2013

Minimal Ethics

Two news stories have quirked my interest this week. That is The Roast Busters and, one which I think is related in America, the Richie Incognito bullying story.

One of the things that has really annoyed me is the people being dismissive of the actions in both cases. In the case of the Roast Busters, it was female friends of the members of the Roast Busters talking about how they're just being teenagers and "it's just normal". The police who were dismissive of the 4 complaints (that we know of) from victims of the Roast Busters - apparently trying to ascertain if the length of these victim's skirts constituted rape or "asking for it". There are protests being held next weekend about it. I'm likely to be going. There is a story on it here (though it's a demonstration of just how completely fucked up the media is - they report that the protest is about charging the Roast Busters as opposed to the blatantly dismissive "we have insufficient evidence" line from the police and the treatment of the victims of the Roast Busters by the police. It's worth noting that a protest against police is probably kind of a dangerous thing to happen).

And in the case of Richie Incognito, there's been loads of talk about American Football culture. It's perfectly normal apparently...

I don't care how isolated you think your particular "culture" is - there are, what I would call, a very minimal set of ethics that form the basis of our society. It's not okay. We should have absolutely no tolerance for it. The police? You should be ashamed! The people saying idiotic things like "boys will be boys" - I hope I'm never in situation where I could save your lives because I really don't know which way I would go. To the school that didn't take the complaint seriously when told they'd raped a 13 year old... Where are your priorities? Don't you have a responsibility to the other kids in the school?

I think there's a whole other issue here - and that is one of the arrogance being shown towards people. A couple of weeks ago I got a rather annoying text. It just said "Sup". It turns out it was some dickhead who thought I was some girl he'd met the night before who thought his particular brand of harassment was somehow endearing. For the entire day he kept on. When told to stopped he kept going.... I ended up ringing him, told him to go fornicate himself and that I'm not there for his entertainment.

Herein lies the problem. People are not playthings. They're people... They're like you. How would you feel being treated the way that you're treating them? I have absolutely no tolerance for anyone who dismisses behaviour that would have them feeling victimized. Enabling people to treat other people in ways that are just plain immoral and arrogant is, to my mind at least, as bad as doing the actual deed. So the police who keep spouting "insignificant evidence" when 4 girls have tried to lay rape charges against this group - the backlash is going to be interesting. Can you really claim that you've acted in the most ethical way?

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