Here’s a couple examples I’ve noticed of late.
A new term has cropped up recently to describe the act of publishing a person’s real name, address and other personal information on the internet with the intent to cause harm.
Yes, it happens so much there’s a word for it now.
The term is “dox.”
Years ago, long before it was trendy, I was doxxed. I had banned a couple of racists from an online forum and they were none too happy about it. So they threatened to kill me. “You have 24 hours to get out of town. Or else.” Seriously? You just did that? I didn’t realize I lived in the town of Tombstone. Oh, look. There goes a tumbleweed. Somewhere a chicken clucks.
I reported the emails to the police. They contacted me and I showed them the printouts. “That happened online? That’s not real. There’s nothing we can do.” True story. Good times.
Later the racists doxxed me on Craigslist, published photoshopped pictures of me and my wife, and took credit for killing my missing cat. Craigslist wouldn’t reply to my requests for help. Remember, I was years ahead of my time. Again, I turned to the police. I had proof I had been doxxed. Their reply? “Nothing we can do about that. It’s not illegal. That’s public information.”
Fast-forward to today and the Topsy-Turvy part: Oregon currently has about 55 “juvenile sex offenders” attending class in 24 different school districts. Parents and other students are not notified of their presence. Why? Because of federal and state laws that protect the privacy of the sex offender student.
How do you know when a situation is Topsy-Turvy? When it only flows one way – against you – at every possible turn. That’s Topsy-Turvy!
You may remember the name Ethan Couch. Recently his name has been coming up in the news again. He’s the Texas teenager who used the “affluenza” defense to get out of serving jail time for killing four persons while driving drunk at over three times the legal limit. He was 16 at the time when he crashed into a stalled pickup on the side of the road.
A CBS television station in Dallas, Texas, reported yesterday that Ethan will be released “very soon” from about a year spent in rehabilitation. Once released, he will be on ten years of probation. He will not have served any jail time for his actions.
And now some Topsy-Turvy: A 90-year man was arrested and taken away, in handcuffs, by Fort Lauderdale police. His crime? Feeding the homeless.
For 23-years Arnold Abbott has operated a non-profit organization called “Love Thy Neighbor” which distributes hundreds of meals per week to the needy. The mayor of Ft. Lauderdale supports a city ordinance that essentially bans food sharing among local citizens.
The mayor was initially defiant. “Just because of media attention, we don’t stop enforcing the law,” he said. Now, in light of media attention that threatens tourism and the local economy (which consists primarily of horny millennials drinking lots and lots of booze and having gratuitous sexual relations with each other and inanimate objects like fire hydrants) he has adopted a more conciliatory tone.
A killer of four walks free among us while a 90-year old man is “dragged away in cuffs” for feeding hungry people and threatening the rights of young people to act like assholes. That’s a whoop ass can full of fucking Topsy-Turvy.
Simple in concept but, like most things, the devil is in the details. How will we as an evolving society continue to embrace this simple concept? Under this basic principle, being arrested is decidedly not the same as being guilty.
Once upon a time I, yours truly, was arrested by the police. I’m not sure if I’ve ever told you that story. It’s a harrowing tale of poop, felis catus, neighborly love, and C.S.I. And just like most episodes of C.S.I. the identities of the guilty will be revealed in time for the credits.
I imagine the whole thing looked a lot like George Clooney being handcuffed and taken into custody. Yeah, exactly the same.
Continue reading →
A very thought provoking post that makes some excellent points.
A quick post about this week’s flap about electronic spying. (Stay tuned for a review of Jaron Lanier’s new book, which is quite interesting in this context, as well.)
First—most of the information is deeply secret, so we really don’t know anything.
Second—the guys holding the secrets are very good at keeping secrets and at manipulating public opinion. Some “leaks” are deliberate misinformation, the best misinformation is plausible and partly true.
That said, there appears to be an amazing amount of hand-wringing about reports that the US security agencies are routinely obtaining all the phone records from telecom companies. Some of the reports seem “shocked” that this is happening, despite the fact that it has been happening for many years. Note that this is legal (under current laws), reported to Congress (per usual mechanisms), and routine. I.e., the US national security agencies should be assumed to have all phone…
View original post 813 more words