Bill Maher on liberals’ Manichean mentality

Why has this perfectly rational analysis of “crime ranking” by Bill Maher (below) turned into Something That Can’t Be Said? As I noted the other day, Matt Damon, for making the statement below, got viciously attacked and demonized, with Minnie Driver being the most vociferous—and irrational—critic:

“I do believe that there’s a spectrum of behavior,” [Damon] said. “And we’re going to have to figure out — you know, there’s a difference between, you know, patting someone on the butt and rape or child molestation, right? Both of those behaviors need to be confronted and eradicated without question, but they shouldn’t be conflated, right?”

“All of that behavior needs to be confronted, but there is a continuum. And on this end of the continuum where you have rape and child molestation or whatever, you know, that’s prison. Right? And that’s what needs to happen. OK? And then we can talk about rehabilitation and everything else. That’s criminal behavior, and it needs to be dealt with that way. The other stuff is just kind of shameful and gross.”

In the clip below from Real Time, Bill Maher goes after the “no spectrum” people who are, by violating common sense, further eroding the image of the Left.

And can someone explain to me why noting that some misdeeds are worse than others—and showing how that’s relevant to how we treat people—has become a no-no? This isn’t unique to #MeToo or threats of sexual harassment, as you’ll know from the recent transformation by some Leftists of “my opponent” into “Nazi!”.



  1. jaxkayaker
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    Nuance is dead.

  2. Jeff Chamberlain
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    It’s also a legal commonplace in criminal law. Robbery with a weapon is more serious than robbery without a weapon. Burglary of an occupied dwelling is more serious than burglary of a house when no one is home. Assault causing more serious injury is more serious than assault causing less serious injury. Murder is more serious than manslaughter. Etc. etc.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:14 am | Permalink

      Yes, except I think you mean battery rather than assault. Technically, an assault is a threat to commit a battery, with the apparent ability to do so. Assaults alone do not cause physical injury.

      • Jeff Chamberlain
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

        In penal statutes nomenclature varies by jurisdiction, and in many “assault” is used for what you’ve termed “battery.”

    • ALe
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

      Yes, but who writes the laws? MEN.

      • nicky
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

        You forgot the /s

    • Christopher
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

      I cut my fingernail off last night


      I cut my finger off last night.

      Now that we live in a post-spectrum culture, there is no difference between those two sentences I guess.

  3. Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Its. Not. Part. Of. The. Narrative.

    Dogma must be followed and only interpreted by the clergy.

  4. Jake Sevins
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    I think Maher is fully on point here. I think it’s sad that Damon felt compelled to recant his statements on this.

    • nicky
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

      I agree, he should not have backed down. He was completely right and rational. It should give us food for thought that he was put under such pressure as to be compelled to back down.
      Equating a pat on the butt -annoying and uncalled for as it is- to rape trivialises rape (If it were, maybe rape is not that bad?)

      • rickflick
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

        Makes you wonder, doesn’t it, what the complainers really have in mind. Are they saying if you are male and have an opinion we no longer care? Or are they saying, it’s about time the mores we’ve lived with since the era of Humphrey Bogart are no longer in play.

  5. Historian
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    Maher’s monologue is great. He argues that the inability of certain people to see that there are degrees of “badness” in regard to sexual misbehavior is a form of madness and an abdication of reason. With feminism, as virtually in all social and political movements, an extremist wing has emerged. The reasonable center must put them down or they will lose control of the movement, another common phenomenon. I cannot predict whether radical feminists will successfully succeed in a coup against responsible feminism, but I can say that they are losing many allies.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      Feminist Jacobins?

  6. JohnE
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    Denying that there are different “degrees” of wrongdoing is to deny the reality that has been acknowledged by jurisprudence for centuries. To my knowledge, every state in the U.S. has laws acknowledging that there are different degrees of murder, ranging from reckless homicide to manslaughter to second degree murder to first degree murder. Our laws also recognize degrees of sexual misconduct, ranging from “battery” to “criminal deviate conduct” to actual rape. How can any sane person not be aware of this, and deny that it exists — or should exist?

  7. Brujo Feo
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    By the time that this all settles out, one of (at least) two things will be clear: either MOST males are irretrievably evil, and we need to get Wonder Woman and her crew in here to wipe the evil bastards out and make the world Safe For Snowflakes™, or maybe RNA has developed completely different strategies for how to use males to produce more RNA, as opposed to how to use females to produce more RNA.

    Backlash much? I predict that by the time the “anti-spectrum” absolutists are done, we’ll have Sharia law, women forced into burqas, and in sand up to their necks, being stoned to death.

    Be careful what you wish for…

  8. Geoff Toscano
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    I think Bill Maher should be the next President.

    • yazikus
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:13 am | Permalink

      Because one TV celebrity president isn’t enough? No thanks.

      • Geoff Toscano
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:38 am | Permalink

        Yep, you’ll just have to settle for Oprah!

        • Bob
          Posted January 21, 2018 at 7:18 am | Permalink

          One Donald Trump is more than enough. We don’t need a Donna Trump.

  9. qp83
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    I think the problem is that normal media lets social media lead the debate, which is just insane. Normal media has bowed down to clicks and views. And this distorts the starting point of every debate/discussion. Intelligence and thought has been pushed back by clicks and views, i.e quick (often emotional with little content) reactions.

    We just have to remember that lots of clicks and views doesn’t mean people agree.

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      This “click, like and share” dynamic so ubiquitous on FB, Twitter etc. is an effective “dumbing down”.

  10. Jake Sevins
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    I think judging crimes on a spectrum makes sense. For example, I view Maher’s calling Milo Yiannopoulos “a young Christopher Hitchens” is pretty offense and stupid, but Larry Wilmore’s hit piece on Otto Warmbier was far more offensive and stupid.

  11. Kirbmarc
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    Blame Critical Theory. Blurring definitions and deconstructing meaning is one of the worst aspects of Post-Modernism, which Critical Theory uses as a basis for its political aims.

    The problem isn’t with the principles of the left, or (of course) even with the more generally widespread idea that violation of boundaries of consent is an immoral act.

    The problem is with the constant deconstruction of the meaning we assign to acts or laws or institutions or principles in a misguided attempt to create a better society.

  12. Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    The reason why authoritarian leftists hate this kind of common sense is because permitting it would make them think for a second or two and adjust their behavior accordingly, instead of just instantly screaming abuse at the designated enemy.

    Maher has long been doing an excellent service by calling out these loons.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

      I agree.

      There is a lot of group-think on the authoritarian left, just as there is with right wing authoritarians. Therefore when someone well known comes along and says something “edgy”, there’s a tendency to agree without thinking. Along with their wish to shut down the ability of their opposition to speak, the authoritarian left have lost the ability to argue against their opponents.

      The Minnie Drivers of the narrative only seem like a majority because they get the most attention.

      However, to those men who say they are going to stop supporting feminists because of people like Driver, I’d ask, “Are you sure you’re not just looking for an excuse? Why is it you don’t already call yourself a feminist, only a supporter of feminists? By making that distinction, is it possible you’re part of the problem by enabling the extremists to take control of the narrative?”

      When sensible, reasonable voices like Maher’s identify themselves as feminist, as he does, that does an enormous amount for the majority who eschew comments like Driver’s.

      • darrelle
        Posted January 22, 2018 at 8:28 am | Permalink

        +10^10 on your last two paragraphs particularly. I hear that “radical feminists are turning me against feminism” type of comment rather frequently these days. It really doesn’t reflect well on the people who say it.

  13. Merilee
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    Maher is often eminently sensible, but then he’s also an anti-vaxxer.

    • tomh
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:59 am | Permalink

      Irrational about medicine and disease in general.

    • nicky
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      I’m still not convinced he’s a die-hard anti-vaxxer. He has some reservations about the flu vaccine (some of which I share, and you will have difficulty in finding a more pro-vaxxer than nicky). I never heard him argue against any other vaccination. I think there is not enough evidence for a ‘verdict’.

      • tomh
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

        “I’m still not convinced he’s a die-hard anti-vaxxer.”

        Perhaps you haven’t really looked. I would refer you to Dr. David Gorski’s well-known blog, “Respectful Insolence,” for an expert opinion. A good start is the post “After five years, Bill Maher lets his antivaccine freak flag fly again,” as he details the show where, “Maher and his guests rubbish vaccines, “Western” medicine, GMOs, …

        It’s not just vaccines, it’s pretty much all of Western medicine. After all, he had David Letterman, who had just survived a heart attack and bypass surgery, on his show and told him he should consider giving up all his heart medications and turn to natural solutions. He’s always been a first-rate quack on medical matters.

        • nicky
          Posted January 21, 2018 at 2:07 am | Permalink

          Yes, that video is pretty damming. He clearly hasn’t a clue how vaccines work. And he’s eaten the anti-GMO woo too.
          Have to admit it is worse than I thought, sad.

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

      So what? He’s right on this.

      • Posted January 20, 2018 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

        Yes he is! And I’ll take that, as no one is “right” on every issue.

        • tomh
          Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

          It’s just too bad that a minor issue like not being “right” on every issue, can cost people their lives when you’re giving quack medical advice on national TV.

          • Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

            “It’s just too bad that a minor issue like not being “right” on every issue, can cost people their lives when you’re giving quack medical advice on national TV.”

            Maher isn’t a major promoter of anti-vaxxing, nor does the make any money off it, as do the others.

            • tomh
              Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

              Who said anything about making money? Maher has said things (about cancer treatment) like, he “doesn’t know whether Laetrile works,” but he does know that “the shit we’ve tried for the last 50 years doesn’t.” He equates Laetrile with modern cancer treatment, and goes on, “but in this country you can’t talk about that. I might get arrested right now.” (A ridiculous statement.) There are lots of examples of his (medical) anti-science beliefs over the last fifteen years. And yes, he does promote them heavily. But I’m done with this, it’s not the subject of this post, not that I agree with him on that, either.

  14. Randall Schenck
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    But don’t we agree the left, liberal progressives or whatever label you apply had lost the ability to have a conversation about lots of things? Then why should this subject be any different? Two of the worst things to have a reasonable conversation about are politics and sex.

    However, Matt Damon is having the wrong conversation. Any idiot knows there is difference between a pat on the butt and rape. We do need Damon to tell us this. That is partly what the Senator is saying.

    I realize this subject is new to many people and they also think that Weinstein or Cosby are the first where we discover this deranged behavior in men. It is not and plan old sexual harassment has been around for more years than any of us. Women have been putting up with this shit forever. Now they are discovering a voice and a way forward.

    So Matt Damon and Bill Maher need to suck it up and listen for a while and just shut up. Some only open the mouth to insert foot.

    • tomh
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      Well said.

    • yazikus
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:11 am | Permalink

      Yes, pretending that people don’t understand that there are levels of bad beneath the umbrella of bad behavior is just insulting. Every time some fellow feels the need to pipe up on their massive platform that some forms of bad behavior are way worse than others I’m tempted to wonder which things on the less-bad end of the scale they are worried about being held accountable for. The hubris involved in their thinking that this important distinction must be shown to the world by them, specifically, is rather astounding.

      • Jake Sevins
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:18 am | Permalink

        Damon spoke up only AFTER people starting conflating prank photos with brutal rape. And your insinuation that Damon is guilty of sexual misconduct simply by speaking about it is pretty unfair.

        • yazikus
          Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:22 am | Permalink

          I don’t agree that saying both behaviors (‘prank photos’ and brutal rape) are under the umbrella of bad behavior is conflation, and I don’t think anyone else does either. I didn’t insinuate that Damon is guilty of sexual misconduct either (by all appearances, he seems to be a stand-up fellow). But why did he think he needed to make the statement in the first place? When someone gets into a fender bender, I don’t feel compelled to make statements about how totaling a car is so much worse, and the fender bender isn’t as bad. Neither are good, and people understand that.

          • Ken Phelps
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:45 am | Permalink

            This strikes me as breathtakingly naive.

          • mikeyc
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

            It bothers me that you and Randall are eliding over the fact that people’s lives are being ruined by the conflation of these things.

            To me it doesn’t matter why Damon said what he did; he spoke a truth. To many it seemed he was derailing the conversation, and I understand that. But the lives of real people are being derailed because we are ignoring those differences.

            That is what Maher was getting at; we need to have BOTH conversations.

            • Rita
              Posted January 20, 2018 at 1:36 pm | Permalink


      • Rita
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

        You might want to re-visit Minnie Driver’s tweet, then think on this a little more.

        • Randall Schenck
          Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

          I am sorry but my overall opinions and understanding of this subject is not based on a pack of Hollywood celebrities or a pack of tweets.

          If people here think thousands of men are being mowed down by false reports I cannot help them. And how about the Doctor for the American Olympics who molested all those young women for years. Do we cry for him as well? Or maybe we get on line and decide which women might just be lying about this.

          I would say you should think a little more on this and not jump on some band wagon. I mean if Matt Damon said it, it must be good.

      • nicky
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

        Well, I’m guilty, I have patted on butts. Always -luckily, I realise now- seen in a non-sexually-aggressive light.

        • mikeyc
          Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

          Some would be glad to see your life destroyed for it and THAT is the issue Maher was touching upon.

          • yazikus
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

            Non-sexually-aggressive butt patting that ruins the lives of men is the issue that Bill was ‘touching’ (pun not intended, I’m sure) on? Do you have any examples of this happening to a man?

          • nicky
            Posted January 21, 2018 at 2:09 am | Permalink

            Yes, that’s why I realise I should count myself lucky.

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      Looking at the substance of their statements, a conversation is exactly what Damon and Maher are trying to have not what Minnie Driver is up to.

      In Maher’s case at least (I don’t follow Damon’s public comments) he is not engaging in reflexive push back. He routinely calls out misogyny on his show and gives feminist issues a prominent platform. There are plenty of women who have also voiced concerns that the me too movement will be able to hit the brakes at the right time.

      Also, there needs to be a conversation about this stuff. Men are generally such complete freaking idiots when it comes to sexuality we need to be able to talk and reflect on this issue.

      I would fully agree, however, that such a conversation would require a lengthy ‘shut up and listen’ phase to start with.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:36 am | Permalink

        We discovered an odd thing about sexual harassment many years ago in our company when we were trying to do something about it. All the conversation and classes people were required to attend did not make much difference. We continued to have more classes but it did not have much impact. It confused lots of people and everyone tried to figure out if they could identify it and define it.

        What did work really well was taking the problem out of the hands of the general population of workers, both management and blue collar. Anyone thinking they had been or were being sexually harassed simply had to report it to their supervisor. It had to be turned in right away, no more than two hours from the time of report. After that the trained investigator takes over and handles the who thing. This had great results and basically solved the problem.

        So, sometimes there are solutions that are better than talk, discussion and lots of people attempting to define the thing.

        • Posted January 20, 2018 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

          I agree that clear regulations should simply be enforced by a neutral party. I’ve also seen in the workplace that trying to deal with it internally is just a invitation for cover ups and enabling further abuse. Until that is achieved, nothing else is possible.

          But I also think it should be possible for people to complain about milder forms of harassment without being concerned that they might get him fired or publicly humiliated — or be seen to be intending that.

          • Heather Hastie
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

            Yes. And while I fully agree with and endorse the approach Randall’s company has taken, I also think the conversations can be useful.

            In the initial stages, one of the reasons talking about sexual harassment etc in a general way doesn’t work is that a lot of men are just looking for guidelines for what they can get away with.

            People get confused about consensual relationships at work too.

            • Randall Schenck
              Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

              Sexual predators who harass women in the work place environment often do it because it has always been the safe place to operate. It also makes them feel important, having some power. They do not just do it once or to one person. They nearly always have a history and all it takes is a little investigation to nail the bastard. They do not do it in places that have set up systems like I have explained earlier. They know they will be caught and they are generally cowards anyway.

              • Heather Hastie
                Posted January 21, 2018 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

                All very true.

            • nicky
              Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

              Maybe I’m a bit old fashioned, but when the contacts between me and my co-workers get slightly (slightly) physical, which is not the same as sexual (I think sexual relations in the workplace is an absolute nono), and there is the slightest of doubts, I just ask if it makes them feel uncomfortable (an easy question), and adding that if so, I’ll immediately change the way of interacting. It is rare I have any doubts, and -until now- of about the dozen (over decades) I wasn’t sure it was taken in good spirit, there was only one person who said she would rather keep her distance (which we did and we’re still working great together, after 9 years).
              There is also this thing of slightly sexual banter too, nothing serious of course, can work well. Many of ‘my’ nurses demand a ‘drukkie’ (a hug) now.

              • Michael Fisher
                Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

                Drukkie – will add to my lexicon & try out ASAP. I suppose it comes from “druk” which seems to be Dutch for [applying] pressure.

              • nicky
                Posted January 21, 2018 at 2:15 am | Permalink

                Yes, Michael, exactly, it indeed comes from Dutch ‘druk’.

              • Heather Hastie
                Posted January 21, 2018 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

                A lot of it comes down to how well you know the people you work with, how long you’ve been working together, how open and comfortable the environment is etc. There are things that are okay from someone you’ve been working with a while that aren’t from a new person. And there are people who give you a “creepy” feeling. Most people navigate work relationships pretty well, and some banter is okay in some situations. Most people can tell the difference between good and bad banter. The main rule is, if in doubt, don’t do it. Asking is good, but ensure a yes isn’t because they feel obliged to say it (which I know is not the situation with you).

  15. Jon Gallant
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    Randall Schenk reports: “All the conversation and classes people were required to attend did not make much difference.”

    Not much difference in the problem at hand, no doubt, but you are forgetting one thing: the creation of a new class of consultants, specialists, and “facilitators” for the required classes in question. In academia, classes and trainings and memoranda about “Diversity”, “Microaggressions” and so on have given rise to a large new bureaucracy of well-paid diversicrats. It is a whole new academic career path.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      Well, there is that. It’s like that consultant your firm hired to improve the company. Often all they do is talk to the people, find out what they want and put that in the report they charge you for.

      Senator Gillibrand tried to get sexual harassment and sexual assault taken out of the chain of command in the military. That is because she knows all to well, reporting harassment and assaults to your supervisor does not get you anything. Especially when the supervisor gets a bad review if he reports any problems. Half the time he is the harasser in the first place. But she has not been able to do that yet because the military has lots of friends in congress and we already know most of them do not care about the subject. They are too busy do it. The military will never solve their problem in is issue if they don’t get it out of the chain.

  16. Posted January 20, 2018 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    I understand why pointing out degrees of bad, “what about the mens” or “don’t all lives matter?” and such “common sense” objection make a lot of people angry. They might be true, but they are distractions at least, or peceived as stalling and making excuses.

    However that gives way to the bigger problem: there is no actual controversy or something that needs to be settled. There are already laws that one can consult in case of doubt. Maher brings up Justitia to show the principle. But he misses the mark ever so slightly, because the badness for sexual wrongdoing is also long cast into the law. So what is this even about?

    Social media is the box, and we are Maru who must enter it. We are then baited into manufactuversies about things that aren’t really controversal by a Woke Culture foremost, and their Alt Right counterpart.

    The Woke People, when caught, disappear in a puff of smoke, like a Rebecca Watson and her extreme assertion that atheism is a literal rape culture where men think they have a right to sexually assault (that’s the bit that subsequently disappeared from the narrative, check e.g. Wikipedia).

    Meanwhile, everyone argues about uncharitable interpretations to reponses of uncharitable interpretations, as communicated in 140 characters, and quoted out of context.

    The Woke people who are immersed in “rape culture” and gender war as their favourite topics pad each other on the back for having raised the consciousness, while they take selfies while posing as the Rosa Parks of this day. They aren’t of course. Add to this the postmodern condition of mixing in trivially true (sex must be consensual) with utter nonsense (there are no biological sexes).

    We are being culturally hacked by the unhinged, the illiterates and their enablers who use this zeitgeist to float their race/gender ideologies.

  17. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    This my seem to contradict my previous post on the topic, but I agree.

    However, the process of assessing justice after the dust settles is independent from the reaction of pain.
    Driver’s point that a woman’s visceral pain at indecent exposure may approach and approximate her pain at rape remains a legitimate ooint. But with regard to the best outcome in the court of public opinion, Damon is largely right.
    Likewise, the unchecked accumulation of small infelicities does act to enable major ones. That, I think, was Alyssa Milano’s point.

    Didn’t see Kirsten Gillibrand’s statement in full. She probably should have said this is the wrong time and place for this conversation right now, but surely there IS a time for that conversation. She should NOT say it’s the wrong conversation.

    Love Maher’s metaphor of Lady Justice with a scale vs a shotgun.

  18. Posted January 20, 2018 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    I have possibly a dumb question, but since Matt Damon was pointing out that minor misdeeds should not be treated equally to major ones, I was wondering if there were cases where that has happened.

    • mikeyc
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      Of course we can only speak of widely known cases (which, by dint of their popularity, tend to be more salacious) but one possibility comes to mind. Compare and contrast the responses to, the consequences for, Roy Moore and Al Frankin.

      • Posted January 20, 2018 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

        That’s a good answer (to a fair question).

      • Mark Sturtevant
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

        It is a good answer. But it does not seem possible to assert that their treatment was the same, or nearly the same.

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

      We don’t necessarily know all the facts but, if his version of events is correct, it looks like Garrison Keillor’s career has ended and his work is being erased from history over accidentally touching one woman’s bare back.

  19. ALe
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    Remember when it was the right that advocated “broken windows” policing? The idea being that small or minor crimes like vandalism and graffiti were basically gate ways to bigger crimes like robbery and assault. So the police, in order to prevent the bigger crimes, ought to crack down hard on the minor ones.

    Now we’ve got the left telling us that minor offenses like complimenting a woman’s appearance need to be cracked down on because it contributes to overall rape culture which will then lead to rape.

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      Broken Windows policing was not about cracking “down hard” on petty crime [public urination, graffiti, fare dodging etc] – it was about ordering the police to begin to actually take notice of such stuff & to deal with it rather than eating doughnuts in their comfortable, warm, dry prowl cars [cynical me]. NYC reported a drop in serious crime in that period although some say that was due to a drop in unemployment at the time.

      I can’t see a connection between the above & the painting with one brush of the spectrum of sexual harassment – presumably fare dodgers weren’t routinely punished to the same degree as arsonists, drug dealers or murderers.

      • mikeyc
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

        You’re right about the broken windows thing AND that you’re being cynical. I grew up with a guy who became a NYC cop in Bed-Sty. I got to meet some of his colleagues and though I won’t stand up for their other character traits, laziness on the job was not one of them. Holy cow they worked long, hard hours, sometimes in harrowing circumstances.

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

          I accept your mild reproach with good grace. 🙂

          What was happening in my brain was I was conflating the NYC situation with my own experience in the UK as a 12 year old. My mother was being threatened by my drunken father – I dragged her away to neighbours & went to the cop shop to report it [there was a long history of similar incidents ending in violence most of the time] – the cops went into their routine about it being a “domestic”, which in those days [1967] was a licence for them to ignore. Which they did.

          • Merilee
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

            Trevor Noah reports the same thing about the cop shops in South Africa when his step-father was threatening his mother. It was all a good ol’ boys club with commiseration about how women drive the men to it😬

            • Michael Fisher
              Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

              The words goose, gander & sauce come to mind 🙂

            • Michael Fisher
              Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

              Ignore previous – misread on my phone screen. Yes indeed – the culture of normalising male violence came from the very top in my case. My Irish RCC background was steeped in it & broadly ‘approved’ by the community, priests & all. To “take the Lord’s name in vain” was the worst thing possible – thus my poor, brainwashed mother was intensely proud that her father never once said goddam or the like & dressed impeccably for Mass, even though he was a right bastard in every other respect. Hitting the girlfriends, wives & children one ‘owned’ was perfectly normal &, in effect, taught at home at ones mother’s knee & reinforced by teachers, priests & nuns. The nuns being the least merciful of all. People as chattels.

          • mikeyc
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

            Make no mistake, my old friend and his colleagues were violent thugs. They weren’t lazy violent thugs, though. But then part of their job was to apprehend other violent thugs (and in the early 80s in Bedford-Stuyvesant that was a significant minority of the population) so though it dosen’t excuse them, it does help explain them.

  20. Posted January 20, 2018 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

    Sexual exploitation from a position of power is bigger than Hollywood, committed
    on all levels throughout societies wherever they are on this planet.
    It should not be subject to:
    ‘offence of the day’ and the shotgun effect of killing off all discussion but surely open to all levels as free speech demands.

  21. Posted January 22, 2018 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    I’ve thought about the accusation of derailing against those who do the nuance stuff. Assume for the moment that the accusers here are right and everyone really does “get the nuance”. Then why not just say so and move on?

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