Barracking

Jan 17th, 2023 9:00 am | By

Steerpike at The Spectator reports on the shouting down of Rosie Duffield:

This afternoon, Rosie Duffield rose in the Commons to support Scottish secretary Alister Jack’s decision to block the new legislation. But she had barely started speaking before the jeers rang out across the House.

Barracking is hardly unusual in parliament, yet what was remarkable was how they came exclusively from the opposition benches. Members of Duffield’s own party joined in unison with the SNP to express their displeasure at her words of encouragement for Jack.

How dare a woman refuse to side with men who call themselves women at the expense of women? How dare a woman side with women instead of men who call themselves women and want to take over everything that belongs to women?



Being shouted down

Jan 17th, 2023 8:53 am | By

Men on the left shouting down women on the left who dare to defend women’s rights. Same old same old same old.

Because it’s only women. Women don’t count the way men do. Women aren’t fully people the way men are. Women are a little bit empty, a little bit trivial, a little bit unreal. They just don’t matter all that much.



Albuquerque roulette

Jan 17th, 2023 7:41 am | By

If you lose an election, the thing to do is just start shooting at people in the winning party. Payback.

A man who ran unsuccessfully as a Republican state politician in New Mexico is accused by police of masterminding a shooting spree targeting the homes of Democrats. Solomon Pena, 39, conspired with and paid four other men to shoot the properties of four local politicians, say Albuquerque police.

Shoot the properties? So, just, like, shooting the chimney or something?

No.

Mr Pena lost his attempt to sit in the state’s House and contested his defeat. The election result was a convincing one, with his Democratic opponent and incumbent winning 73% of the vote.

Hahahaha that’s not so much convincing as a massacre.

On 15 November he posted a photo of himself in a Make America Great Again sweatshirt and draped in a Trump 2024 flag, saying he would not concede the election.

Also, he would throw catsup all over his walls.

At a press conference on Monday shortly after his arrest, police said that following his loss, Mr Pena had approached the four Democrats he later targeted – two county commissioners and two state legislators – to say without evidence that the election was fraudulent.

The following week…

The local paper, the Albuquerque Journal, reported that on 4 December eight shots were fired into a commissioner’s home and then 12 bullets at another commissioner’s home a week later.

On 3 January, three shots were fired at a state Democrat’s home. The bullets travelled through her young daughter’s bedroom, the paper reported. A fourth politician then found damage to his property.

It’s just a matter of luck that no one was killed or injured.

We still live in Trumpworld.



Twanzphobia ith a thin!

Jan 17th, 2023 7:11 am | By

The godbotherers join the fun.

Image

Typical godbothering blather, announcing that “transphobia” is a “sin” without explaining what “transphobia” is or what “sin” is. Let’s join up all the magicky words in a chain so that we can tie everyone up with it.

Transphobia is a sin, plus trans people are whole and holy. Wtf does that mean? What does it mean for a human to be “whole”? It has all its parts? Well, trans people who’ve had “gender-affirming” surgery don’t have all their parts, so in literal terms, whole is exactly what they aren’t. Or is it supposed to be “spiritual”? But then it means everything and nothing; it’s just churchy warm fuzzies. As for “holy”: warm fuzzies times a billion.

Transphobia is a sin. Trans people are divine. Trans people exist because their ancestors existed.

Lying is a sin, or rather lying is bad. The core dogma of trans ideology is a lie, the lie that people are whatever sex they say they are as opposed to the sex their body is. This dim-witted person doesn’t bother to say what counts as “transphobia” but doesn’t hesitate to call it a sin – so churchy, that is. Trans people are of course not “divine” because that’s a magic-word, and magic isn’t real. If the evangelist means “divine” as in “this chocolate mousse is divine” well then it’s a case of de gustibus non est disputandum. As for the last bit…well duh. All people exist because their ancestors existed. Are we supposed to think their ancestors were trans and that’s why they are? They come from a long and glorious line of divine trans people? If so, what are her sources?

Let us all call out and denounce the sin of transphobia in our communities and institutions and loudly, boldly and joyfully proclaim that trans people are created in God’s image to be their extraordinary selves.

Blah blah blah. Let’s get happy-clappy, kids – bring out your guitars and let’s all embarrass ourselves!



Who gets the equality protections?

Jan 16th, 2023 5:09 pm | By

The gender recognition wars rumble on.

The UK government has decided to block a controversial Scottish bill designed to make it easier for people to change their legal gender. UK ministers say the draft law would conflict with equality protections applying across Great Britain.

What equality protections? Mostly the ones that protect women. It’s odd (or cowardly) that the Beeb doesn’t spell that out. The harm done by gender ideology is done almost entirely to women; no doubt that’s why nobody cares.

Nicola Sturgeon’s government believe the current process is too difficult and invasive, and causes distress to an already marginalised and vulnerable minority group.

But what about distress to an already subordinated and vulnerable half-of-humanity group? Why do trans people matter so much more than women? Why is it all right to trample on women’s rights, but not all right to deny men who identify as women peculiar new “rights” that aren’t really rights at all?



Guest post: A highly stunted cultural exposure

Jan 16th, 2023 4:06 pm | By

Originally a comment by Enzyme on It would be so easy to move on.

That made me think of Daniel Barenboim taking Wagner to Israel, too.

On a more general point, I wonder whether the reason they can’t leave Harry Potter alone is that most of the complainants are of the internet-in-the-bedroom cohort. They’re the generation that grew up online, rather than reading. As such, I would not be surprised if HP is the only book/s they have ever read, or at least the only ones that they’ve read aside from those they were required to read at school. Their cultural exposure is, I strongly suspect, highly stunted.

Harry Potter blocks off most of the horizon because they genuinely don’t know how big the horizon is.

And lest it sound like I’m being disdainful – oh, all right then: I am, a bit – they’re products of a culture. We can’t hold them to blame for having intellectual rickets when it’s the culture generally that’s kept them out of the sun.



Mursal Nabizada

Jan 16th, 2023 11:37 am | By

News from Afghanistan:

A former Afghan MP and her bodyguard have been shot dead at her home in the capital Kabul, Afghan police have said.

Mursal Nabizada, 32, was one of the few female MPs who stayed in Kabul after the Taliban seized power in August 2021.

Her brother and a second security guard were wounded in the attack on Sunday.

Former colleagues praised Ms Nabizada as a “fearless champion for Afghanistan” who turned down a chance to leave the country.

The Taliban’s god hates women.

Hannah Neumann, a member of the European Parliament, said: “I am sad and angry and want the world to know!” in response to the killing.

“She was killed in darkness, but the Taliban build their system of gender apartheid in full daylight.”

The Taliban hates women.



Hyperb much?

Jan 16th, 2023 10:52 am | By

What world does Owen Jones live in?

By “anti-trans activists” he means women who don’t share his belief that men who call themselves women are women, and who point out the ways such a claim negates women’s rights. It’s not hateful and cruel for women to defend our rights and resist a campaign to hand them over to men who call themselves women.

Meanwhile he continues to pretend that “trans rights”=LGB rights and LGB rights=trans rights. Holyrood’s “gender recognition reform bill” is an assault on women’s rights.



Obsessed with emulating violent sexual acts

Jan 16th, 2023 10:31 am | By

Home life with David Carrick according to an ex:

“He used to say: ‘Who do you belong to? You belong to me.’ He said many, many times: ‘You have to obey me. You’re here to serve me.’” The woman described Carrick as a sex addict and alcoholic who started drinking at 7am after returning home from night shifts guarding Westminster VIPs.

She said his three-bedroom terrace house in Stevenage, Hertfordshire, was full of pornography and he became obsessed with emulating violent sexual acts. She said he would often text her pornographic videos while on duty, and if she said she was not interested he would send her “sad face” selfies.

The easy instant availability of porn has been such a wonderful thing for women yeah?

“Sex became really violent,” the woman said. “He wanted me to be the same as a prostitute but I didn’t want to do this kind of stuff. It was weird, crazy stuff and I didn’t accept it and that’s when the fights started.”

But don’t let anyone tell you that prostitution is not a fabulous career choice for women! Sex work is work!

She alleges that Carrick would become violent if she refused, kicking her out of bed and strangling her. She recalled a harrowing experience on holiday in which he tried to force her to drink his urine. “We had a really bad fight because he wanted me to do that,” she said. Fighting back tears, she added: “One time he made me do it. We were having a shower together. You say no and he forces you. He forces you. You want to get away from that situation but you can’t. It’s awful.”

She accused Carrick of raping her on more than one occasion, saying: “I would say no and then wake up with him on top of me … He’s not a normal person – but he used to call me frigid.”

Carrick also restrained her using his police-issue handcuffs, sometimes lashing her wrist to her ankle and leaving her immobile. She recalled once being handcuffed at his home for hours after he claimed to have lost the key. “I started crying, saying I was going to call my family and he said he had to go to his base in central London to get the key.”

Don’t worry, it’s just kink, it’s fine.

The woman said she ended the relationship a year later after Carrick handcuffed her before throwing her outside naked in the middle of the night. Carrick then blackmailed the woman in an attempt to make her stay with him, she claimed. “He told me: ‘I’ll put drugs in your car and call the police. Who are they going to believe?’” But she told Carrick she was going to report him to the police and he eventually stopped harassing her.

He stopped; it’s in the past; what’s the big deal?



Reason for travel

Jan 16th, 2023 7:55 am | By

Why Andrew Tate moved to Romania:

In one of his social media videos, Andrew Tate explains why he moved to Romania in 2017.

“One of [my reasons] is the #MeToo era,” he says. “People say: ‘Oh you are a rapist’. No, I am not a rapist, but I like the idea of being able to do what I want, I like being free.”

“If she goes to the [Romanian] police and says: ‘He raped me yesterday’, they’ll say ok, do you have evidence? Is there CCTV proof?”

Yes quite. Rape is such a fun crime for the perp, because all you have to do is turn the CCTV off and you’re golden. Everybody knows women are all lying Karens, so it’s generally quite safe to rape them.



Guest post: It would be so easy to move on

Jan 16th, 2023 7:32 am | By

Originally a comment by Piglet on Holy dread.

I can’t get over how pathetic it is. There are so many fantasy novels out there that they could read, including ones by trans authors and with trans characters, yet they’re hung up on this one. It would be so easy to move on and read a different book. I used to love the music of the Smiths, but Morrissey turned out to be such a prick that I haven’t been able to listen to them anymore. That’s OK, plenty of other bands out there. Conversely, I know Jewish opera fans who enjoy Wagner, feminists who love James Brown, CSA survivors who still listen to Michael Jackson. They accept that you can enjoy the music without signing off on everything the artist did and believed in.

But this “I can’t move on and let go of these books so I’m going to steal the credit for writing them” routine is bullshit. As long as they keep reading those books, they’ll know that JKR wrote them and got the royalties for them, and it will torment them because you can never completely lie to yourself. You can’t half-ass a damnatio memoriae, so move on from reading Harry Potter. Hell, JKR herself has moved on from writing Harry Potter – her other projects are selling very nicely thank you very much, because she is a genuinely creative person, while all they can do is plagiarise and imitate and rebrand and steal. Pathetic.



49 counts

Jan 16th, 2023 6:44 am | By

High up London cop turns out to be a serial rapist. What a surprise.

A Metropolitan police officer has been revealed as a serial rapist who committed more than 71 serious sexual offences, despite the force being told of repeated allegations over two decades that he was a threat to women.

Well twenty years isn’t that long, and you don’t want to rush these things. It’s better to wait and see how it all plays out.

PC David Carrick, an armed officer in the parliamentary and diplomatic protection command, admitted on Monday to 49 counts – some detailing multiple offences, against 12 women.

Police and prosecutors say he exploited his position as a Met officer to lure women, then terrorise them into staying silent about his sexual attacks and degradation of them.

The scale of offending by Carrick, 48, spanning 17 years, makes him one of the worst sexual offenders in modern criminal history.

He pleaded guilty to the final offences against him on Monday at Southwark crown court, allowing reporting restrictions to be lifted.

He’s one of the worst sexual offenders in modern criminal history (that we know of) and he’s a cop. Brilliant.

After more than a year of pre-trial hearings covered by tight reporting restrictions, Carrick pleaded guilty to the final six charges on Monday, having pleaded guilty in December to 43 charges.

In all Carrick admitted 49 charges, some of which detailed multiple instances of offending.

In total the Met officer entrusted with a gun and guarding some of the country’s most sensitive sites pleaded guilty to 24 counts of rape, nine counts of sexual assault, five counts of assault by penetration, three counts of coercive and controlling behaviour, three counts of false imprisonment, two counts of attempted rape, one count of attempted sexual assault by penetration, one count of causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent, and one count of indecent assault.

Police suspect Carrick had other victims who have yet to come forward, or who told detectives of the Met officer’s attacks on them but could not face the ordeal of a trial, which is notoriously gruelling for victims of sexual violence.

And not likely to succeed anyway.

Harriet Wistrich, of the Centre for Women’s Justice, said: “All these revelations in the context of the wider picture that has been revealed of misogyny within the Met is seriously undermining of women’s confidence in the police …

“[Carrick’s] crimes, along with a significant number of other Met police officers, reveals the a deeply rotten misogynistic culture that has been allowed to exist within the Met.”

These are hate crimes more than they are sex crimes.

Now the reporting restrictions have been lifted, the Guardian can reveal part of the until now secret reason Cressida Dick was ousted as Met commissioner in February 2022 by the London mayor, Sadiq Khan, was the Carrick scandal, as details emerged of his offending and possible Met errors.

Oh that’s interesting.

In a statement Khan, who is also the police and crime commissioner for London, said: “Londoners will be rightly shocked that this man was able to work for the Met for so long and serious questions must be answered about how he was able to abuse his position as an officer in this horrendous manner.

“The work to reform the culture and standards of the Met has already started … But more can and must be done, including acting on the findings of the forthcoming Angiolini inquiry, and I will continue to hold the Met to account as they work to implement the reforms needed.”

Fine, but he needs to unsack Joan Smith. She’s been reporting on this subject for decades.



Holy dread

Jan 16th, 2023 5:41 am | By

Don’t utter the name!!

A Canadian trans artist is taking JK Rowling’s name off Harry Potter books and reselling them without it following the debate about the writer’s views on trans issues.

Is a trans artist someone who claims to be an artist but isn’t actually a literal artist?

More to the point, what a childish and spiteful little hobby. Some observers are saying it’s a violation of copyright, but we can say for sure it’s childish and spiteful.

Artist Laur Flom is now removing her name from books about the boy wizard, before giving the books new covers and selling them for £140.

It has been reported that some of the proceeds are then donated to transgender charities.

Some. That’s still quite a hefty profit.



Art historians respond

Jan 15th, 2023 6:42 pm | By

The faculty of the Department of Art History at the University of Minnesota issued a statement of its own, a far better one.

The tenure-stream faculty of the Department of Art History at the University of Minnesota writes to address the recent non-renewal of adjunct instructor, Dr. Erika López Prater, from her term appointment at Hamline University in Saint Paul, Minnesota. As has been widely reported, and especially well documented in a New York Times article of January 8, 2023, Dr. López Prater showed a 14th-century manuscript painting depicting the Prophet Mohammad in her art history survey course, prompting student complaint and the subsequent cancellation of Dr. López Prater’s spring semester course. This happened without the due process of formal investigation, without an opportunity for Dr. López Prater to respond to the administration’s ill-informed and unfounded accusations, and without good-faith institutional investment in open dialogue or the restorative practices of communication and relational repair. The blame for the mishandling falls entirely to Hamline’s administration.

One, two, three. No due process, no chance to respond, without institutional investment in open dialogue and relational repair.

In response, we offer this unanimous statement from our position as tenure-stream faculty at the only PhD-granting institution in art history in the state of Minnesota and as faculty in a department that has long been proud to be a leader in the field of Islamic art. These distinctions overlap. We are uniquely positioned to serve and learn from Minnesota’s rich and diverse Islamic communities, which include students who we know regularly negotiate an educational landscape often pitched against them.

That’s how it’s done. They’re passionate about Islamic art and they’re passionate about students from rich and diverse Islamic communities who feel beleaguered. I bet they’re a lot more passionate about those actual students than the goons who fired Dr. López Prater are. I bet the goons are just afraid of them.

It is in view of all of this that we offer our strong support of Dr. López Prater, an alumna of our graduate program who achieved her PhD in Art History from the University of Minnesota in 2019. We view her course at Hamline to uphold the standards and norms of our discipline and its changing, global canon. We also admire Dr. López Prater’s thoughtful approach to teaching, as demonstrated by, among other things, her clear and sophisticated understanding that historical knowledge always intersects with contemporary circumstances and experiences. 

As art historians, we believe that images and objects are unique sources of cultural information. Our job is to study them in their original and ongoing historical contexts — contexts that we understand to be widely varied, overlapping, and dynamic. As art historians, we believe in the unique power of images and objects in social life. Our discipline treats that power with responsibility and respect. As educators, we are challenged to make past worlds alive and relevant to contemporary viewers, which we do through the conveyance of artworks, even when it means presenting cultural realities that are distinct from or even anathema to our own. Indeed, we study artworks from the past precisely because they were understood in their own time very unlike how viewers might apprehend them now. This is what makes them indispensable records of individual, cultural, and historical difference. 

There. They make me want to study art history. They also make me want to cheer and applaud and fling roses.

Dr. López Prater’s course included a discussion of a medieval Persian painting, commissioned by the Il Khanid Prime Minister, Rashid al-Din for an illustrated manuscript known as Jami al-Tawarikh: Compendium of Histories. The Compendium itself is widely considered to be the first truly global written history, covering all time periods and religions of the known world. Illustrated copies were made in both Arabic and Persian, the main languages of the Muslim world at the time, and distributed widely to libraries. Rashid al-Din established a trust so that at least one copy would be made every year to ensure its longevity and spread. In other words, the book’s paintings had a wide audience in the 14th century, achieving something akin to what we might now call public domain. Illustrations from the Compendium, including the image at the center of the Hamline controversy, are considered masterpieces in Islamic art history, commonly taught in college and university courses, and reproduced in Yale University Press’s textbook, The Art and Architecture of Islam, by Sheila Blair and Jonathan Bloom, as well as in many other specialist publications. 

And it’s a beautiful image. As I mentioned when I first posted about this, it’s not literally an image of Mohammed, because it was hundreds of years after he lived, and they didn’t have photos. It’s an image of their idea of him, and a very humane image it is. It’s sad as well as bad that it’s taboo.

Including the Jami al-Tawarikh illustration in a classroom lecture and displaying it at length allowed Dr. López Prater to analyze its considerable formal merits, to explain the artistic and theological diversity of Islamic visual histories, to demonstrate their change over time and across cultural geographies, and indeed to present Islamic artistic and scholarly traditions as having always been central, not peripheral, to a global, cosmopolitan world. For all these reasons, we agree with the Muslim Public Affairs Council’s statement of January 9, 2023, which affirmed Dr. López Prater’s lecture as useful to the effort “to combat narrow understandings of Islam” and so also “to combat Islamophobia” writ large. Such a perspective does not delegitimize student experience or obviate the need for sustained conversation when classroom harm and cultural offense occurs. It is this experience of active discussion, response, disagreement, and curiosity about alternative perspectives that we as art historians and college educators often enjoy most about our classrooms.

But Hamline just said get out.

In its removal of Dr. López Prater from its teaching roster, Hamline’s administration took an explicit stand against higher education’s longstanding tradition of instructional prerogative, compromising the freedom of college-level instructors to make individual selections and decisions in presenting expert knowledge of all stripes (factual, theoretical, interpretive, editorial). This prerogative goes by the term “academic freedom” and it is an extraordinary privilege. As faculty, we cherish this privilege as necessary to our scholarly enterprise and earned through our pursuit of scholarly inquiry, knowledge, and insight. We take the responsibility that comes with this privilege seriously, practicing it within the social contract of the university classroom and the responsive learning communities we seek to forge there. Academic freedom, too, is a privilege we fear is currently under threat, a precarity made worse specifically by the casualization of academic labor via the underpaid adjunct gig economy and the disposability of expertise in pursuit of rising revenues. 

Isn’t it nice to read people who know how to write? And think?

Big thanks to Sackbut for alerting us to the letter.



The vice president for inclusive excellence

Jan 15th, 2023 3:59 pm | By

The Times reports on that firing of an academic who showed an image of Mohammed in an art history class we talked about last month.

Erika López Prater, an adjunct professor at Hamline University, said she knew many Muslims have deeply held religious beliefs that prohibit depictions of the Prophet Muhammad. So last semester for a global art history class, she took many precautions before showing a 14th-century painting of Islam’s founder.

Let me just interrupt here to say it’s an art history class and students shouldn’t be able to impose their religious taboos on all the students in the class. Their deeply held religious beliefs should be their problem, not everyone else’s. If they can’t tolerate images of Mo then they shouldn’t take an art history class.

In the syllabus, she warned that images of holy figures, including the Prophet Muhammad and the Buddha, would be shown in the course. She asked students to contact her with any concerns, and she said no one did.

In class, she prepped students, telling them that in a few minutes, the painting would be displayed, in case anyone wanted to leave.

Then Dr. López Prater showed the image — and lost her teaching gig.

She’s an adjunct. Adjuncts don’t have the protections that academics with tenure have. It’s easy to fire them.

Officials at Hamline, a small, private university in St. Paul, Minn., with about 1,800 undergraduates, had tried to douse what they feared would become a runaway fire. Instead they ended up with what they had tried to avoid: a national controversy, which pitted advocates of academic liberty and free speech against Muslims who believe that showing the image of Prophet Muhammad is always sacrilegious.

But again, whether they believe it’s always sacrilegious or not, they don’t get to impose their beliefs on everyone else. If Christians don’t want to engage in a discussion of the historical Jesus and whether he existed or not, then they shouldn’t take a class in the subject. Same goes for snapshots of Mo.

A senior in the class went whining to the administration. Other students, not in the class, added their whines. The university lay on the floor while the whiners walked up and down on it.

Officials told Dr. López Prater that her services next semester were no longer needed. In emails to students and faculty, they said that the incident was clearly Islamophobic. Hamline’s president, Fayneese S. Miller, co-signed an email that said respect for the Muslim students “should have superseded academic freedom.” At a town hall, an invited Muslim speaker compared showing the images to teaching that Hitler was good.

Minnesota has a sizable population of immigrants from Somalia. Minnesota should by all means welcome them, but it shouldn’t impose their religion on anyone (including the immigrants themselves).

Dr. Miller, the school’s president, defended the decision in a statement.

“To look upon an image of the Prophet Muhammad, for many Muslims, is against their faith,” Dr. Miller’s statement said, adding, “It was important that our Muslim students, as well as all other students, feel safe, supported and respected both in and out of our classrooms.”

But lots of things are against lots of faiths. If people go out into the wider world instead of staying inside a religious enclave, they give up the power to impose their religious beliefs on everyone else.

And it’s actually not important that students – any students – feel safe, supported and respected in the sense of shielded from material that violates their tedious religious taboos. It’s actually important that students not feel sheltered in that way, because otherwise they won’t learn much.

Omid Safi, a professor of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies at Duke University, said he regularly shows images of the Prophet Muhammad in class and without Dr. López Prater’s opt-out mechanisms. He explains to his students that these images were works of devotion created by pious artists at the behest of devout rulers.

“That’s the part I want my students to grapple with,” Dr. Safi said. “How does something that comes from the very middle of the tradition end up being received later on as something marginal or forbidden?”

And then used as a weapon against hapless art history professors who don’t have tenure.

Four days after the class, Dr. López Prater was summoned to a video meeting with the dean of the college of liberal arts, Marcela Kostihova.

Dr. Kostihova compared showing the image to using a racial epithet for Black people, according to Dr. López Prater.

Oh for fuck’s sake. No it’s not.

“It was very clear to me that she had not talked to any art historians,” Dr. López Prater said.

Zing.

The good news is she doesn’t particularly want to stay, and has job offers.

But on Nov. 7, David Everett, the vice president for inclusive excellence, sent an email to all university employees, saying that certain actions taken in an online class were “undeniably inconsiderate, disrespectful and Islamophobic.”

The administration, after meeting with the school’s Muslim Student Association, would host an open forum “on the subject of Islamophobia,” he wrote.

Dr. López Prater, who had only begun teaching at Hamline in the fall, said she felt like a bucket of ice water had been dumped over her head, but the shock soon gave way to “blistering anger at being characterized in those terms by somebody who I have never even met or spoken with.”

I bet David Everett loves to call women terfs, too.

At the Dec. 8 forum, which was attended by several dozen students, faculty and administrators, Ms. Wedatalla described, often through tears, how she felt seeing the image.

Other Muslim students on the panel, all Black women, also spoke tearfully about struggling to fit in at Hamline. Students of color in recent years had protested what they called racist incidents; the university, they said, paid lip service to diversity and did not support students with institutional resources.

The main speaker was Jaylani Hussein, the executive director of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil rights group.

Ah yes CAIR – not so much a Muslim civil rights group as a theocratic Islamist rights group.

The instructor’s actions, he said, hurt Muslim students and students of color and had “absolutely no benefit.”

“If this institution wants to value those students,” he added, “it cannot have incidents like this happen. If somebody wants to teach some controversial stuff about Islam, go teach it at the local library.”

What an ugly and stupid thing to say. Hamline is a university, not a madrasa (and not a monastery either). Universities teach “controversial stuff” all the time – it’s an important part of the job.

Mark Berkson, a religion professor at Hamline, raised his hand.

“When you say ‘trust Muslims on Islamophobia,’” Dr. Berkson asked, “what does one do when the Islamic community itself is divided on an issue? Because there are many Muslim scholars and experts and art historians who do not believe that this was Islamophobic.”

Mr. Hussein responded that there were marginal and extremist voices on any issue. “You can teach a whole class about why Hitler was good,” Mr. Hussein said.

Again – that’s a stupid thing to say. Showing an image of Mohammed – from an Islamic tradition – is not remotely comparable to saying Hitler was good.

During the exchange, Ms. Baker, the department head, and Dr. Everett, the administrator, separately walked up to the religion professor, put their hands on his shoulders and said this was not the time to raise these concerns, Dr. Berkson said in an interview.

How horrible. How disgusting. Get your hands off me and yes it is the time, it’s exactly the time.

But Dr. Berkson, who said he strongly supported campus diversity, said that he felt compelled to speak up.

“We were being asked to accept, without questioning, that what our colleague did — teaching an Islamic art masterpiece in a class on art history after having given multiple warnings — was somehow equivalent to mosque vandalism and violence against Muslims and hate speech,” Dr. Berkson said. “That is what I could not stand.”

Seriously. Bringing in the CAIR guy just made it more like that.

A higher up CAIR guy has a much better take.

Edward Ahmed Mitchell, the deputy executive director of the national chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said that he did not have enough information to comment on the Hamline dispute. But while his group discourages visual depictions of the prophet, he said that there was a difference between an act that was un-Islamic and one that was Islamophobic.

“If you drink a beer in front of me, you’re doing something that is un-Islamic, but it’s not Islamophobic,” he said. “If you drink a beer in front of me because you’re deliberately trying to offend me, well then, maybe that has an intent factor.”

“Intent and circumstances matter,” he said, “especially in a university setting, where academic freedom is critical and professors often address sensitive and controversial topics.”

He should have a word with Mr. Hussein.



In the way and dangerous

Jan 15th, 2023 10:26 am | By

Allons enfants:

Parisians will be invited to vote on whether to allow electric scooter rental services to continue operating in the French capital as authorities weigh banning the controversial for-hire vehicles, the city’s mayor has said.

Do it. Those things are a nightmare. People zoom silently down the sidewalk [pavement] on them, risking the lives of all pedestrians.

The issue is “extremely divisive”, Anne Hidalgo told the weekend edition of Le Parisien newspaper, with critics saying riders show only cursory respect for the rules of the road.

Cursory meaning zero.

They often defy bans on riding on pavements, or park without consideration, while some abandon the scooters in parks or even toss them into the Seine river.

David Belliard, Hidalgo’s deputy in charge of urban transport, still said a cost-benefit analysis did not favour the rental schemes. “They are in the way and they are dangerous,” he said, saying he favoured a ban to “pacify our streets and pavements”.

There was “too much negative feedback” from citizens about the scooters, he said.

Get rid of them. Set an example.



Today in Newcastle

Jan 15th, 2023 10:03 am | By

Let Women Speak part one:

Apparently the audio cuts out a lot, so be warned.

Part 2 is refusing to embed so here is Part 2.

H/t latsot



Disordered

Jan 15th, 2023 7:28 am | By

Interesting. It seems that if you’re in the military, reporting rape=having a “personality disorder” and getting discharged.

Hundreds of female members of the Armed Forces who accused their colleagues of rape were “misdiagnosed” with having a personality disorder, The Telegraph can reveal.

You can kind of see the logic, I guess. No one but a personality disordered person would accuse a colleague of rape. It’s such a…disordered thing to do.

The victims claimed that after they sought help for sexual assault from the military’s departments of community mental health (DCMH), they were “written off” with emotionally unstable personality disorder and subsequently medically discharged.

Very community mental health. I’m sure it did wonders for them.

Paula Edwards, the chief executive of Salute Her UK, a charity for female military personnel who have experienced sexual assault and rape, said that victims were being “overdiagnosed and misdiagnosed” so that the military can “get rid of the problem”.

By throwing out the victims and keeping the perps. It’s a very good idea to keep the military well stocked with rapists.

Ms Edwards told The Telegraph that it became a “common theme” for young women to have the diagnosis on their medical records when accessing support from her charity.

“It is a worrying pattern,” she said. “A woman is raped so she goes to DCMH. She’s understandably all over the place. She might be suicidal. But instead of the medical practitioner seeing it as post-traumatic stress disorder [PTSD], they diagnose her with a personality disorder. 

“You can’t serve in the military with this diagnosis, which enables the military to get rid of the problem.”

It’s not at all personality disordered to rape, but it’s very personality disordered to report rape. That’s the long version of bitches be lyin’.

Read the whole thing. It’s infuriating.



Guest post: Standing for Women event today

Jan 15th, 2023 6:01 am | By

Originally a comment by latsot in Miscellany Room.

I’m going to the Standing For Women event in Newcastle today. There are expected to be ‘counter-protesters’ there (by which I mean crybabies in masks) so there might be interesting things to report.

If you want to follow what’s happening on Twitter, the official account is @SFWnortheast and the most relevant tags are #LetWomenSpeak, #LetWomenSpeakNewcastle, #WomenTalking.

I expect footage of the talks (if they are allowed to take place) will be on KJK’s various spaces at some point. I’ll be filming what I can, but I won’t be able to get decent footage of the talks. I need my hands to get around so I’ll be using a chest-mounted camera and I’ll be in a crowd. And The mic isn’t great.

If you don’t know what these events are about, here’s KJK talking about the Newcastle one:



A person seemingly exposing

Jan 14th, 2023 5:28 pm | By

Oh yes about that guy with his dick out:

Victoria Centre statement over pictures of person exposing themselves in House of Fraser

Not themselves, just himself. He’s a guy.

A statement has been issued after photos of a person appearing to indecently expose themselves in a Nottingham designer shop caused rage on social media. The censored pictures have been widely shared on social media, depicting a person seemingly exposing their private parts in public.

What an abominable piece of writing. The photos were of a man apparently flashing in a Nottingham shop.

Users have identified the shop where the pictures were taken, which was in various locations across House of Fraser, in Nottingham’s Victoria Centre. The person seems to pull up their skirt slightly, revealing stockings, while posing at the camera smiling.

The man. His skirt. Also that was only one of the photos; the others were more…er…direct, although I’ve only seen them with an emoji over the actual naughty bits.

pause to rummage through Twitter

Ah yes, this is the one.