First, there's some lunatic who decided that it'd be fun to hit #Occupy protesters with his car down by the Convention Center in two separate incidents on Friday night. Accounts differ sharply about what happened, though the police are investigating one incident as a hit-and-run and cited or arrested six pedestrians, Occupiers all, in the other. Apparently both incidents involved the same driver. DC Police Chief Cathy Lanier, who is usually a pretty reasonable egg (and her position here is disappointing, though unsurprising despite her usual tendency toward reason), has had enough of this; her press statement today called the Occupiers "increasingly confrontational and violent," belying my earlier conviction that MPD would be smart enough not to engage.
I have no trouble believing that the following things are true:
-Some asshole wanted to commit vehicular assault against Occupiers.
-Some Occupiers were dumb enough to believe that no one was crazy enough to commit vehicular assault against them.
-The Occupiers were in a particularly irritable humor that night, since the event they were protesting at was an Americans for Prosperity dinner gala.
-MPD is pretty fucking tired of this shit, and also, two different sets of cops, of varying levels of sympathy, handled the two different incidents, five minutes and no more than two blocks apart.
Of course, if I'm right, it doesn't negate vehicular assaults. Nor does it negate the consequences of violent protest, if that's in fact what was occurring. To be clear, my opinion is that probably both of those things occurred. My opinion, my asshole, right?
But it's not doing anything to improve my humor about the mass of dickweeds who are expressing unbridled joy that maybe some protesters got assaulted for the crime of creating an inconvenience, or their fervid wish that these unwashed loser hippies would just get jobs, which are of course plentiful, except when we're talking about President Negro. In fact, it in no way makes motherfuckers who need to shut the fuck up a whole lot any less motherfucking tiresome.
Second, there's the growing parade of women who've allegedly been harassed or assaulted by Herman Cain, and the legion of retards suggesting that they're all whores, that Bill Clinton was worse, or that liberals are responsible for the sudden outpouring of information about candidate Cain's behavior as president of the National Restaurant Association. I'll go all in on Dahlia Lithwick; my lede for this item goes way too easy on lying motherfuckers, because what they're really saying is that sexual harassment doesn't exist.
I don't profess to know what happened, but actual legal settlements by the candidate's employer sort of point to some conviction on their part that something did, in fact, actually happen. Contemporary witness accounts--attested by affidavit--also tend to militate toward the notion that this isn't bullshit. Conservatives' conviction that Monica Lewinsky was the last victim of sexual harassment need to be met with punches in the mouth.
I've read a lot about how the shadow of sexual harassment has permanently changed workplace social dynamics. I have something to say about this. I've been wrongly accused of sexual harassment. I've been rightly accused of sexual harassment in one instance, at least in the sense that, while my actual behavior was unthreatening, inoffensive, and irrelevant, I damn sure wanted to do something inappropriate with the accuser, and while I didn't overtly manifest that, my behavior was probably such, in some way, that she picked up on that vibe (I beat the rap, which didn't negate my Carterian heartlust). And in another instance, I was involved in a wildly inappropriate relationship with a colleague that she could easily have perceived as harassment, had she chosen to do so (she didn't, and in fact wallowed willingly in the inappropriateness, but that doesn't change what could easily have been).
This shit's real. It was a long time ago. I was younger. But it's all real. I was a dick. I got better, at least I think I did--my last brush with a grievance was over a dozen years ago (it was wrongful--the righteous one was farther back, and to be fair, I got out of the business of managing people for about 7 of those years). Does the shadow of those happenings affect the way I act now? Fucking A. I examine my behavior in the light of my past. But what casts the shadow is my behavior, not the threat of what people might do if they don't like me. And what that shadow darkens is any intention I might have of being a dick. This cannot be construed as a bad thing. It provides additional internal motivation--as if I need any--to not be an asshole.
My past has convinced me that truth will out. Herman Cain's behavior is a perfect model of a guy who's scared shitless that truth is outing.
A Creel of Eels
17 hours ago