Thursday, April 16, 2015

Can You See Me?

Clowns that only let you know
Where you let your senses go
Clowns all around you
It's a cross I need to bear


*Warning: Contents could contain information that is offensive, or display trigger images.

The Rock Group T.A.T.U sing a haunting song about a flesh and blood person living in a purgatory of beings who see right through her. Her pain doesn't matter; she is not important. We all have that pursuit of happiness thing that we want to go for as much as possible. It's fun to party, drink, and go a little wild when studies are done. Or Vacation time is here for that working stiff who has kept their nose to the grindstone.  Sad that some people see Spring Break as a time to lose your mind and do something stupid to a young woman. The worse part about this attack, it wasn't any he-said she-said situation. Cause there were witnesses... A lot of witnesses.

I received a story from a friend on Twitter last week that stopped me dead in my tracks. It froze the blood in my veins, and then shot it back to a boiling point. A young woman, who was passed out on a public beach in Florida, was the victim of a public gang rape. The most chilling part of the whole story wasn't just the rape itself, but the fact that onlookers just stared and watched the whole scene, as if they were extras in a porn shoot. Some said the onlookers seemed more concerned about spilling their drinks than what was going on. Many with cell phones out, were actually recording the rape, but no one intervened. 

All This Weeping In The Air

"What's wrong with people?" my friend texted back. That has to be the question of the year. To stand there and watch this as though it's some form of free entertainment by a bunch of clown-types sends our respect for another person's well-being to the basement.

 Suspects sought in alleged Florida spring break gang rape
By Standers look on in alleged Florida spring break gang rape Youtube

Aside from several perps being arrested who were involved in this animalist frenzy, the only spot of mercy was that the victim did not see the faces of the bystanders looking on. At the most needed moment of her life, she was no more important than a character on TV, or a reality show. The revulsion I have for people who rape is unchallenged, unless it's in the bystander who looks is so close to what's going on, but not compelled to act in any manner. I'm not talking about the person who fears and then turns away or cowers in fear of their own safety, but the people who look on, with recorders and cell phones in hand, recording a crime for their own amusement. 
Somehow this incident was discovered by the police because of a shooting incident that was unrelated. Troy police were quick to condemn this act as disgusting and cowardly.

Panama City, Bay County Sheriff Frank McKeithen
"You need to wake up and see what's going on. This is what we see everyday. This is probably one of the most repulsive sickening things that I've seen on Panama City beach, and I've seen a lot of them.--- Within ten feet of where this is happening, there is hundreds of people standing there- watching, looking, seeing, hearing whats going on, and yet our culture, our society, and our young people, have gotten to the point where this is acceptable." 
April 12, 2015 CBS News

Clowns All Around You

So with drinks in one hand and cell phone in another, gawkers with painted clown faces looked at the spectacle without a shred of empathy in their hearts or a sense of outrage in their minds. They never thought "This could have been me, or my daughter, sister, or best friend." Or even that this was a crime and someone should try and stop it.  It makes me pause to wonder what people see as fun or amusing. I'm amazed with all the attention that colleges have been getting about campus rape, that the students in this crowd actually thought that drugging and raping a woman in broad daylight on a public beach was a good idea.

There are times when people question if a real rape culture exists. Apparently many people are so mentally soaked with porn images, they either don't know the difference between (so-called) art form and reality. Maybe their attitude is "celebrities make porn movies... what the hell???" Now if you don't like my little connection with porn or not, then that's on you. But my main point still is that this rape flick was produced without the victim's knowledge. If some sleaze gets a hold of it, it will be easier to nail an omelet to a tree! All it takes is to capture the hearts and minds of one emerging generation and you can conquer it. Gene Roddenberry's classic
A Young Village woman has been sexually
 assaulted in Star Trek: Return of The Archons
Star Trek series illustrates a world that was out of order by a computerized mind called Landru who absorbed the inhabitant's will so as to live orderly lives, turning them into a Stepford Society. The people become mindless puppets. The parents hide, while the young people run wild, pillage destroy and even sexually assault one another in public. I wonder if we are becoming too programed by our passions in this century. Healthy sexual expression is good, but against another person's will or permission is still rape.

So I'm addressing this issue of bystander indifference to give people some pause to think. Rape is still a crime. But it is being perpetrated in broad daylight on victims, while crowds look on as though they are part of a new adopted theology of life. I usually write articles about the failing institutions and the system that ignores the rape culture or enables it. But when bystanders standby and feel no obligation to at least get involved at some level, then "we the people" need to remember that without liberty and justice for one, there is liberty and justice for none.

This issue is dedicated to the "unknown victim survivor" of the Spring Break, Panama City situation, and to others like her.  In the future I hope we will see them.


CBS News

Star Trek
Return of The Archons 1978 Paramount Pictures

Clowns (Can You See Me?)
Copyright: Universal Music Publishing Int. Mgb Ltd

Special Thanks to 
Vera SantaClara for twitter alert to this story
Hang in there kid. 
And Friends and Advocates
Rosie Palfy
James W. Weirick