Saturday, 16 June 2007

(Before I saw Casper's email, I'd intended to write another post about Edith Wharton. I apologize to those of you who read me for, well, what I write. You shouldn't be subjected to this. So more on Wharton tomorrow. Also, I've posted more today than I've ever posted on a single day before, which is ... a dubious distinction. I'll be posting less frequently, but more substantially, very soon.) Is it against the law to request the IP address of someone who refuses to provide identifying information for the purposes of having his lawyer contact them? Is it a felony? According to someone, it may be "solicitation to commit a felony/conspiracy and solicitation to commit a felony/substantial battery." Given that I acquired his IP address from the very email he sent me, I wonder whether he is himself complicit (thus culpable) in this conspiracy? As you might imagine, someone has forwarded another email. It is over 2,500 words long and apparently took him two days to compose. I'll post the "highlights" below the fold, but let me take a moment to explain why I'm not simply letting this drop. I received hundreds of emails—which I'm responding to, albeit slowly—from people who have been harassed by the likes of Casper. Most were women. Most had no way to respond. I'm lucky enough to have a wide enough audience to publicly shame Casper for his abusive behavior. It is not acceptable. His words drip with privilege, born of race and class, bolstered by his belief that he's superior to those he claims to defend. His treatment of Kevin is typical. It may seem hypocritical of me to speak for those who can't while mocking him for doing the same, but there is one crucial difference: I don't assume anyone incapable of self-defense. I know people had no recourse, that they were happy that someone stood up to an online bully. He assumes all African-Americans unable to mount any sort of defense against a "racist" like me. That he sends his emails to everyone who looks African-American at UCI is significant. One recipient of Casper's mass-mailing wrote me back surmising, correctly, why he, a native of Nigeria, had been included in the email. He wondered why those who oppose racism in their words are so quick to endorse it in their actions. With that, I present the latest defamatory statements by John Casper: [1.2] Does UCI own the software, lines, or servers that Mr. Kaufman used to try and obtain my IP address? If not, who does? I am very interested in what Mr. Kaufman planned to do once he unlawfully obtained my IP address. Is he still looking for it? A police report provides that kind of detail and I most assuredly want a copy of the police report for my files. Not still looking for it. You already provided it to me. [1.3] A related issue is that Mr. Kaufman accused me of harassing him. Did Mr. Kaufman follow UCI procedures...
Nice Breasts Tour The Creation Museum My friend John—a self-professed "atheistic, post-Mormon, freethinking-Quaker, pro-feminist, aspiring SF writer and some time religious studies grad student"—wrote a post about two atheists who went to the Creation Museum undercover. One wore this shirt, the other this one (front, back). The whole set's worth a look, as it's the most exhaustive documenting of the museum I've yet seen. Just as I was about to write a little something about the museum itself, however, I made the mistake of looking at the comments on the first picture of the shirt. The first is: nice breasts. GOD. nice breasts. Who would spend their time trawling Flickr for photos and commenting on the appearances of strangers? The "GOD" is doubly egregious, since the couple's clearly there to mock the Creation Museum. Granted, I'd still have been off-put if it'd read: nice breasts. NATURAL SELECTION. nice breasts. That granted, I'm tempted to leave that comment, but I'm understandably gun-shy this week. Would the context be clear? Would I be commenting on the comment, or on the woman? Would an additional comment be required, something like: nice breasts. ACQUIRED CHARACTERISTICS. nice breasts. I could start multiple fake accounts, such that the first comment would be left by "dArW1N lu\/3r," the second "lA/\/\aRc|< r00lz," but that'd be excessive. The context would be clarified, but the time invested would've been better spent reading more Edith Wharton. Which, I should add, is reason I find such an everyday slight so galling. Consider: a few days before her wedding, Wharton was seized with such a dread of the whole dark mystery, that I summoned up the courage to appeal to mother, & begged her, with a heart beating to suffocation, to tell me "what being married was like." Her handsome face at once took on the look of icy disapproval which I most dreaded. "I have never heard such a ridiculous question!" she said impatiently; & I felt at once how vulgar she thought me. But in the extremity of my need I persisted. "I'm afraid, Mamma—I want to know what to know what will happen to me!" The coldness of her expression deepened into disgust. She was silent for a moment; then she said with an effort: "You've seen enough pictures and stataues in you life. Haven't you noticed that men are—made differently from women?" "Yes," I faltered blankly. "Well, then—?" I was silent, from sheer in ability to follow, & she brought out sharply: "Then for heaven's sake don't ask me any more silly questions. You can't be as stupid as you pretend!" The dreadful moment was over, & the only result was that I had been convicted of stupidity for not knowing what I had been expressly forbidden to ask about, or even to think of! To lurch from that to the lewd remarks of random strangers is quite the fascinating ordeal. I'm not so judgmental as Wharton's mother, but the impropriety of those remarks, the casual disregard of vestigial decorum, seems all the more offensive...

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