See, It Was Rape, But Not the Bad Kind of Rape, Not the Rapey Rape

I just watched a new clip (which I assume will come up here later) about the Rutherford County School Board president who at a school board meeting tonight, for some reason, felt compelled to announce that, after viewing the rape of a girl caught on a school bus camera, that he was disappointed in the gossip because, though it was clearly a rape, it wasn’t a rape. In other words, the dude forced his hand inside her as she begged for someone to stop him, but he didn’t force his penis inside her so… well, you know.

I’ve got nothing.

Edited to add: Still no clip, but via Ginger, I found this story over at WKRN. I quote for you the particularly douche-baggy part.

But Byrnes said, “There were a couple times where she did say no or stop. The rest is up to interpretation.”

And according to Byrnes’ interpretation he said, “Nothing I could see indicated a sexual assault was taking place.”

But police detective Wayne Lawson says after watching the video, it was clear that an assault had occurred.

That’s what led to the rape and sexual battery charges police filed against Riverdale senior Brandon Stover.

Even the Rutherford County school spokesperson told the media he saw the girl ask for help.

That’s right, girls and boys, you can say “no” and “stop” and ask for help and somehow that doesn’t constitute a sexual assault, even though having someone jam his hand into your vagina counts as rape under the law. I don’t know who gave Dr. Byrnes his PhD but they ought to revoke it.

Edited again to add some more: Elizabeth Ulrich, over at Pith, is also all over this. Because there’s nothing more heartwarming than a bunch of powerful men sitting around watching video of something unpleasant happening to a 14 year old girl and then passing judgment in public about whether they think it was traumatic enough to count as rape.

Edited one more time to link to the WSMV storyHere’s the link to the WSMV video.

I Don’t Want to Say I Told You So, but…

Firing Hobbs would have been total bullshit because the problem runs much deeper.  Check out this story at the Scene about what a charmer that Robin Smith is.

Over at Pith, Jeff Woods compares her rhetoric to Bin Ladin, which is all well and good and true, but I think he’s missing the more important comparison.  Tell me, what is the difference between Smith’s rhetoric and the rhetoric of the Council of Conservative Citizens?  We don’t have to look yonder to imagine people so filled with anger and fear over people who have different religions from us.  We grow them right here.

One or the other

It’s the kind of day you either want to spend hanging between two palm trees on a beach in San Juan


or listening to Nina Simone, practicing singing “Go to Hell” in that cheery a voice.

As you might guess, I’m not in San Juan.

Where’s a Girl Find an Acacia Tree in These Parts?

There are some parts I really love in the Bible.  I adore how, even though we’re all supposed to be good girls, it’s the bad girls who do all the fun stuff.  I love Wisdom refusing to be relegated to a ametaphor.  “No,” she says, “I was there with God in the beginning, helping him with creation and taking delight in what we’d created.”  I love that moment when Jesus is cooking breakfast for the apostles just because I come from a family of people who would think it was hilarious to sneak into your house unexpectedly and surprise you with food.  It’s that moment, for me, when you realize that it wasn’t, for Jesus, about establishing himself as the head of some giant bureaucracy, but about his real adoration of his friends and his community.  I love the Preacher moping all over Ecclesiastics and I love in Psalm 62 when the poet is talking about how awesome God is, how He is his rock and his defense and how, because of this, “he shall not be greatly moved.”

A lot of translations render that as “shaken,” but I prefer “greatly moved.”  Both because it’s more poetic and because, when I was a Christian, that was exactly the type of Christian I was–as the old hymn says–prone to wander.  I liked the idea that I was only ever slightly off course.

I love that Abram and Sarai had God and his buddies over for dinner.

And then there’s that moment when God’s all like “Moses.  Hey, Moses!” and Moses is looking around, wondering if he’s hearing things and then there’s a bush and it’s on fire, but not consumed, Hey, Moses, hey, Moses! and Moses starts to tentatively come closer and God’s all like, “Come on, man, I don’t have all day” and just when Moses gets over near the bush, God says, “Take your shoes off.  You’re standing on holy ground.”

Whew.  It gives me the heebie jeebies just typing it.

Anyway, it turns out that Moses was probably tripping on some kind of acacia bark tea.

I, myself, don’t think that mitigates the story; I think it suggests a path.

It also puts me in mind of the tripping leopard, which is one of the things I love about blogging, I can find that stuff again and remind you of it.