News Reporting

Diminshed memories

Let’s Talk About Kasandra Perkins for a Change.
The man who abused her and killed her was a sports star, so she gets to be a bit player in her own death – a mere cipher to discuss him. It is not the same as he put her through – but it certainly is analogous. She deserves a voice in this story, as it is hers too. She suffered. Her baby is motherless, fatherless, and this is the legacy she has too. Her father is ‘mistaken’, a ‘victim of sports pressure’. There is even suggestions, hints, if not outright statements that somehow she is culpable.

She was only culpable for believing they could work it out. That the Counselling was helping. That he meant his promises of change. She wanted to believe it for her daughter. From the depths of her frequently cited (by those who bothered to seek) compassionate, warm, sympathetic heart, she wanted to believe for him, too. There is the same blinding heroism of the star athlete that has led to her diminishment in the story told, who knows what role that held in her optimism? He was such a ‘good guy’….

Too many abusers are seen that way. Too many victims are not believed because ‘he couldn’t be like that’. She must be mistaken, exaggerating, she must have earnt or deserved it. As if anyone deserves it. And it is worse for men – who can also be abused. More often (but not only) emotionally rather than physically abused, they are even more supposed to ‘man up’. As if a man could be broken by words. Huh. Anyone can be. Words can erode your sense of self, of worth. You become ‘lucky they will put up with you’, somehow deserving all the abusers because of your own faults. You become pathetically grateful for any small kindness. And it can all be masked behind makeup or smiles. People can never suspect.

I know all too well. I, like many others, have scars inside that won’t heal, and I am lucky, I escaped. With enough left to recover somewhat, become seemingly strong. I was lucky in my friends and family, they came put to save and support me. I will regret all my life the scars I thought I had protected my children from, that I thought I had hidden away from them. But children are wounded themselves, of not abided directly, from seeing some one they love suffer, and how confusing to have it be at the hands of the other person they love and trust.

So, it’s hard, and it hurts, but you can escape and rebuild. We do need better protection for men and women facing the most dangerous of abusers, the crazy violent stalkers. And we need to remember the victims matter.

Her friends called her Kasi.

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Angelina Jolie and her film on the Bosnian War

This film sounds like it evokes the horrors of war in a way that many films have not ever capture – the female horrors of rape, child loss. It is different from male horrors experienced. And as rending, heart breaking as it sounds, that is a valuable voice to hear.

[Jolie] took this focus and directness, this earnest approach to her new film, In the Land of Blood and Honey, which opens in the U.S. this month. She told me that when it came to the technicalities of making a film, “I wasn’t afraid to ask the DP [director of photography]. And I listened to my cast, most of whom lived through the war. I listened to their stories and tried to incorporate it into the work.” Against the backdrop of the war, she has created a moving and surprising love story of a Serbian soldier and the Bosnian woman he reencounters ambiguously during the war. It is difficult not to admire Jolie, particularly after watching her film.

via Angelina Jolie Directs a Film About the Bosnian War – The Daily Beast.

Power and abuse

Map of Texas highlighting Aransas County

Image via Wikipedia

I know people who have struggled to have a child, and your heart aches for them, you know what amazing wonderful parents they would be.

Then there is this utter douchebag – a judge beating the hell out of his disabled daughter with a belt – then coming back to do it a second time. With the collusion of the mother. Damn.

He is bitching now that the daughter, who secretly videoed the ongoing abuse, has ’caused trouble for him’. There are no words i can use in public for the depth of my loathing for people like him. Let us just say i lose my normal live and let live approach and turn old testament about it all.

Those who abuse the powerless, especially their own family, are evil, vile monsters. i can sort of understand snapping once (just) and living with the regret of that, trying to be a better person, but this sick b*st*rd really got into this. Sick doesn’t cover it, actually.  And she has a younger sister still living at home, so i can understand her releasing it.

Watching this video breaks my heart. It should break everyone’s heart. And i bet this evil man gets away with it – after all, a Texan judge?

The Internet is blowing up with a video allegedly posted by the daughter of an Aransas County judge that she says shows him beating her.

Someone who says she is the daughter of Judge William Adams posted the 2004 video only recently. The hard-to-take clip shows a man whipping her with a belt because she was downloading music from the net.

“Bend over the fucking bed!!” he screams as he belts her while she tries to squirm away. At another point he threatens to hit her “in your fucking face.”

At another point a woman, who the poster says is her mother, comes in and tells her to bend over “like a 16-year-old and take it.”

via Texas Judge William Adams Allegedly Beating Daughter: Horrifying Video (UPDATED) – Houston News – Hair Balls.

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Early present for me…

NeilGaiman the Cat enjoying a  fellow authors work

NeilGaiman the cat enjoying a fellow author's work - Image by LilithSativa via Flickr

Neil Gaiman interviewing Terry Pratchett about his latest Discworld novel – but it isn’t Xmas yet! Hey, i will take the gift of video goodness anyway – yay!

Terry Pratchett on Snuff – Boing Boing.

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Never fight a land war in central Asia…

Kabul Kids

Image by mknobil via Flickr

A quote form The Princess Bride that still resonates with truth. Maybe more politicians should have sene that classic and paid some attention.

The media has been engrossed in the saga of Qantas quite understandably – greedy execs! evil unions! country to hostage! weary travellers! sound bites! tension! outrage!

Perfect camera fodder.

There was, however, other main stories happening. One tragically huge one.
Three young men were gunned down, shot in the back by an Afghani soldier, someone they had treated as a comrade, someone who they believed they were helping train to defend his country. It sadly turned out his idea of that defence and theirs were polar opposites.

The lack of media involvement with this sad case, overwhelmed by the more media glamorous, and,  to be fair, quite genuine upset of the travellers, does question how much consideration was given to real victims of long term suffering, the families left behind by these latest deaths. And how many more families, and how much longer are we there for…isn’t it time we stopped berating yet another greedy CEO and ask these questions for a while? The CEOs will obligingly still be opportunistic parasites, and thus will be there after we have tried to find solutions to this particular disaster.

As we mourn the death of three young men and their wounded comrades, perhaps we should be spending more time reflecting on how and why it is that they won’t be coming home. Surely it’s as important as showing us a middle-aged man angrily waving a Qantas frequent flyer card and berating the fact that he’s suck in the Qantas Club at Bangkok airport for an extra day.

via When your journey’s not just disrupted, it’s ended – The Drum Opinion (Australian Broadcasting Corporation).

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Rolling in The Hamster Wheel

As a sometime only Chaser’s fan, i am revelling in The Hamster Wheel – looking at media in Australia in a way that is very Australian but with elements of Chasers & The Daily Show crossed. The Hamster Wheel comes from a quote from Jay Rosen “The Hamster Wheel isn’t speed; it’s motion for motion’s sake. The Hamster Wheel is volume without thought. It is news panic, a lack of discipline, an inability to say no.”

The Hamster Wheel – ABC TV.

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Today Tonight – yet more proof ratings is more important than integrity or decent reporting.

The cynical lies and beatups are nothing new. The gross violations of both privacy and journalistic standards are becoming sadly more common. But even in this all too common sphere of journalistic beatups, this is a stand out piece of ratings based exploitative garbage, designed to fan the flames of racism and ignorance against genuine refugees…I urge you to read the article, and the linked fuller breakdown of the footage.

On Monday, Media Watch included a critical analysis of a report aired on October 10 on Seven’s Today Tonight. For a full transcript, click here.

I’ve spent four years in the Media Watch chair – and in all that time I have never seen a more mendacious, deceptive and inflammatory piece of ‘journalism’.

via Today Tonight: refugees from journalistic decency – The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation).