klwilliams: (Karen passport photo)
[personal profile] klwilliams
So I've been trying to understand why the Trump supporters are, well, Trump supporters. My uncle Joe lives in Louisiana. He's a Vietnam vet who believes firmly in the ideals of the '40s and '50s. What I gather from that is that he believes in serving his country and protecting women and children, among other things. He's basically a nice guy, reasonably intelligent, and not a Fascist by any stretch.

I asked him to be specific about why he doesn't want Muslims in the US, and he said it's because of stories like these that he claims aren't being reported in the mainstream press. I googled on "germany islamic men rape women" and found many articles about what the wikipedia article talks about, including this from The Washington Post. Go ahead and take a look. I'll wait.

I read the San Jose Mercury News every day, cover to cover, because it's not nearly as thick as it used to be. Still, it has a decent national and international section, though the international news seems to be mostly about ISIS and the countries where they have footholds. I hadn't read anything about the rapes in Germany and Sweden. However, looking at the sites that are reporting on these rapes, I see some are from fake news sites, like this one.

So, is this really happening? It's certainly one of the fears from the grand old days of the '40s and '50s, that black men might rape white women. It might be happening. When I was in high school I was raped by an Iranian college student, who said the same kind of things to me as are reported in these internet stories, so yes, this happens. But, I don't see this happening, certainly not on this scale, in the United States. We do a much better job of vetting our refugees, and while we probably get a terrorist or two, I don't think we're importing enough for this kind of thing to happen. However, my uncle is concerned enough about this happening that he doesn't want any Muslims to enter the country at all. It's an interesting problem.

Date: 2017-02-08 02:29 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] coth.livejournal.com
I'm not going to follow the links - I'm feeling too fragile right now.

I have a relative who believes that Romanians come to this country and kill the swans on the rivers to eat. Last month that same person explained to me in detail how a specific person had behaved well, with competence and honesty, and later in the conversation went on to say that all members of that person's ethnic group are lazy, dishonest and corrupt and have no right to live in this country. Sometimes I challenge. Sometimes I despair. I wish I had answers.

Date: 2017-02-08 03:15 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] loupnoir.livejournal.com

Groups of bored young men find trouble.

I had no idea you had been raped. I am so sorry that you had to endure that.

Date: 2017-02-08 03:30 am (UTC)
ext_13461: Foxes Frolicing (Default)
From: [identity profile] al-zorra.livejournal.com
Men of all kinds whatever nation of origin prey on vulnerable women.

A friend of mine -- a very close friend indeed -- she introduced me to Himself -- went off to Europe on her own back in the 80's, getting out in Germany at the -- I forget which city -- not Berlin at that time!

A Turk offered her a great deal to take her to her hotel, much cheaper than taking a taxi. She was jet-lagged. She went with him and was held prisoner and raped for almost two weeks. Then -- he just let her go.

She never thought this happened because he was a Turk, but because that's what so many men do.

Date: 2017-02-08 04:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] klwilliams.livejournal.com
I'm so sorry for your friend.

Date: 2017-02-08 01:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mrissa.livejournal.com
A few things jump out at me about the WaPo article.

It says that about half the suspects are foreign nationals who had only recently arrived in Germany. Which means...half are not.

There is also a blurring between sexual assault and rape in this article. I have suffered sexual assault. It is bad. But it is also highly variable in how bad, ranging from the merely upsetting to the distinguishable from rape by the tiniest technicality. And it seems to me to make a rather large difference what social problem you're describing. If I had been raped on the dance floor at numerous concerts, that would tell you far worse things--shocking things--about the concert-going public, the people who run those venues, etc. That I was instead groped by men I did not know does not mean that it was a happy time or that they were well-behaved or even non-criminal, but it is an entirely different picture. Combining the two seems designed to raise the ire of people like your uncle.

The phrase "accused of groping" makes me wonder how many sexual assaults happen on NYE between people of the same ethnic and immigration status here in the US. My best guess: lots. Really lots. In a major city, "hundreds" would not surprise me.

I don't mean to diminish sexual assault here; it is and should be a crime. As I say, I've experienced various forms of it. But I feel like this article is very nearly written to give you the impression that hundreds of "foreigners" are raping women when an examination of what they are actually saying is that hundreds of men--both native-born and foreign-born to the country in question--engaged in sexual assaults including rape but also including groping passersby in a crowd.

By all means, charge the people who did this. But that's just it: it's a crime. Prosecute it as a crime. Recognize that it's a crime that needs more attention in most countries when native-born people do it as well. Let's get better at policing assault and particularly better at policing rape, and everyone, no matter where they are born, will know that they can't get away with it. Turning away refugee kids because they might grow up to be gropers while ignoring the gropers we have right here does not seem like a moral position to me.

Date: 2017-02-08 08:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] klwilliams.livejournal.com
I agree that much more needs to be done to police all sorts of sexual assault at all levels. The Stanford swimmer/rapist brought that conversation to the forefront out here, at least for a while, but the issue needs work to change men's behaviors. Kind of like how having a designated driver became an accepted part of going out drinking, there needs to be some sort of concerted effort at large.

Date: 2017-02-08 04:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mevennen.livejournal.com
First of all, I'm sorry to hear about your experience.

There have been a few incidents in Europe, widely reported in the mainstream media. They've been appalling, but we read about assaults from military personnel and footballers, e.g., in the US and shudder, and I know people (including myself) who are increasingly reluctant to visit the US because of gun massacres. You could mention this to your relative: I'd rather be raped than shot dead.

I've lived and worked in 3 Islamic countries, and nothing whatsoever happened to me: Kazakhstan was safe enough to hitch with strange men on a regular basis. I've had comments in Turkey, and been routinely groped in Egypt in a mild way (irritating but not traumatic). I've been physically assaulted and seriously threatened by Englishmen in England: the worst that's happened has been here in my own country by my own countrymen.

Date: 2017-02-08 08:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] klwilliams.livejournal.com
I think you're more at risk of sexual violence than gun violence here in the US, though both are reasonably low in the area where I live. That doesn't mean that an angry white man with a gun won't pop up shooting here tomorrow, though.

Date: 2017-02-08 05:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ms-cataclysm.livejournal.com
I have linked to an article in the Independent - a fairly reliable newspaper featuring reporting by Stacey Dooley who is a thoughtful and feminist tv journalist.


There have been a lot of groping incidents in Germany and some of the women also had their bags taken. My recollection was that there were also a smaller number of more serious sexual assaults at a Swedish musical festival.

Reaction here in the press has ranged from :

Right wing press reporting it with horror.

Left wing press reporting it but also pointing out that right wing press hasn't covered very widespread rapes and forced trafficking into prostitution of refugee women and children.

Left wing press has also asked why right wing press is focussing on the brown on white German and Swedish attacks when white on white and brown on brown attacks aren't reported so extensively (well not unless famous footballers are involved).

My own view are that the incidents did happen and even if some papers have blown it up , the incidents are still serious . Realistically, there are over 1 million refugees
in Germany and some are going to be rapists and thieves. But it's also true that very large numbers of refugees are being raped and this gets very little coverage in the tabloid press.

Amnesty International have said that very large numbers of refugees are being raped in the camps and by smugglers -report here if you're feeling strong .


Date: 2017-02-08 08:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] klwilliams.livejournal.com
Thanks for the information. I'm not really up to following the links, though.

Date: 2017-02-09 06:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rustmon.livejournal.com
love and strength. <3 <3


klwilliams: (Default)

June 2017

1112131415 1617

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 22nd, 2017 02:47 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios