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“They’re Remorseful” vs. “He Was No Angel”

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This is how the criminal justice system functions:

Zachary Costin and Andrew Ward, both then 22, went to Colorado and bought 18 pounds of pot from an illegal grower. They hired another 22-year-old man to bring it back to Kentucky. Police say the man had done the same thing for them twice before. Police in Colorado later found and seized a large amount of marijuana, hashish, money and documents linked to Costin.

This time, though, the “mule” was stopped for speeding in Kansas, where police found and seized the marijuana. He was allowed to continue on to Lexington in return for cooperating with a police investigation. The man told Costin, Ward and Ethan Hatfield, 21, what had happened in Kansas and that he was cooperating with police. Hatfield, whose family has been associated with Rod Hatfield Chevrolet, and Costin were then fraternity brothers in UK’s chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon.

Costin asked the man to come to Hatfield’s home, a mansion valued at $2.5 million in McAtee Run, a gated subdivision off Tates Creek Road. He was led to the basement where Hatfield and Costin were accompanied by John Nathaniel “Porky” Cooper, 36, who introduced himself as the “person hired to kill you.”

They forced the man to take off all his clothes and snort a Xanax pill. For the next two hours, he was held against his will and tortured with a hammer, pliers and an AR-15 rifle stock. He told police the men also pointed handguns and a shotgun at him. After he agreed to pay them $45,000, he was allowed to shower and leave the house naked, but the men took his Armani watch, wallet and cell phone.

Cooper, Costin and Hatfield were indicted in April 2017 on kidnapping, robbery and assault charges. Costin and Ward were indicted on a charge of criminal conspiracy to traffic in more than five pounds of marijuana. But those charges were amended down, and the defendants pleaded guilty: Cooper, Costin and Hatfield to unlawful imprisonment, theft by unlawful taking and misdemeanor assault. Costin and Ward also pleaded guilty to conspiracy to traffic 8 ounces to 5 pounds of marijuana.

Fayette Circuit Judge Thomas Travis in May sentenced Costin to seven years, Cooper and Hatfield to five years and Ward to two years in prison. But between Aug. 7 and Sept. 10, Travis granted all four men “shock probation” — releasing them from jail in return for 15 hours of community service each year for five years.

Travis’ decision, which prosecutors didn’t oppose, came after defense attorneys filed papers saying their clients were remorseful, that they wanted to continue their education, return to their families. They claimed there was little chance the four young men would commit another crime.

Kentucky is one of a few states that allows shock probation. The idea is to give a second chance to offenders who might be “shocked” straight by a short stay behind bars.

The state, of course, keeps no statistics on the demographics of offenders who might be “shocked” straight.

Let’s also be clear; I doubt that a short stay behind bars can “shock” the stupid out of you.  Their co-conspirator did the stand-up thing of informing them that he was working with the police before they imprisoned him in the basement of the suburban mansion. Then they torture him, rob him, and let him go?  Did they think that without his cellphone he wouldn’t be able to get in contact with the cops?

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CallMeWilliam
4 hours ago
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diannemharris
5 hours ago
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tubaterry: https://twitter.com/CriminelleLaw/status/1037511306906099712 Reminds me of my mom...

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tubaterry:

https://twitter.com/CriminelleLaw/status/1037511306906099712

Reminds me of my mom getting remarried several years ago, for about a weekend - dude waited until after the wedding to tell her he expected her at waiting at home with dinner waiting when he finished work.

I dunno, like I get that this version of manhood is “normal” but goddamn is it the most brittle, contemptable fuckin thing

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CallMeWilliam
2 days ago
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We maintain a healthy competition on income and assets. I'm currently winning on income (hooray), and losing on assets (boo, debt). This competition means we strive for better paying jobs. That we love each other means we support each other in leaving bad jobs.
diannemharris
3 days ago
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benzado
3 days ago
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It is useful for young men who think these things to read these reactions before they get too old to rethink them.
New York, NY (40.785018,-73.97
duerig
3 days ago
I don't know what is worse. The idea that your partner is somebody you are in competition with and whose strength intimidates rather than empowers you. Or the idea that 'teacher' and 'nurse', two highly-credentialed and highly intellectual disciplines are somehow non-intimidating because the practitioners don't 'think so much'. If any man confides this kind of feeling in a partner, it should be in the context of confessing a personal problem that they want to fix in themselves. This is just gobsmacking that it could be a normal reaction to wish that your partner wasn't successful.

"Are you willing to believe one woman if it means explicitly, definitively not believing one man? How..."

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Are you willing to believe one woman if it means explicitly, definitively not believing one man? How many women’s testimonies are worth one man’s protestations? In the long list of vastly important issues facing America today, where do you place, “believing women”? Is it above or below, say, “climate change” or “upholding Citizens United”?

These aren’t meant to be leading or accusatory questions. They’re not even really about Brett Kavanaugh. They’re about what it means to develop your personal moral code when cases are deeply messy, as these types of cases often are.



-

Monica Hesse in Do we really ‘believe women’? How the Kavanaugh accusation will put a slogan to the test. 

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diannemharris
3 days ago
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acdha
3 days ago
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Washington, DC
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Mom’s blistering rant on how men should be blamed for all unwanted pregnancies going crazy viral. 

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via <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/hey__paul/6980584656/in/photolist-bCRjBS-7qYCFS-ht4o7H-7qUHLz-aqqBxn-qgx9wL-p1XW9k-eyFXm8-9wVPMa-diyGJV-fiYHpP-7qYD61-28aGDYB-fizHVp-bAwExG-2c1hXf-Gnd3Et-21BtQfS-283JWR9-fBzGZ-bVFx68-cm3kh7-6qme4Y-2z5zP3-de2M4a-de2LMb-eZ9nmn-o6Tyvh-de2MpG-az4SG-de2MRD-de2LDa-5oXRxs-7Vkiq8-de2Mko-7QG4nS-8c225Z-6dhjmS-5oXRtC-8chyyc-osgeZ3-de2JNh-YMvTM3-bLauEg-YE51t2-qgxwL5-dLRpVM-Y9bZNc-ZKfUZ6-YQ6QKR" target="_blank">Hey Paul Studios/Flickr</a>

Members of the Church of Latter Day Saints, commonly known as Mormons, are a conservative group who aren’t known for being vocal about sex.

But best selling author, blogger, and mother of six, Gabrielle Blair, has kicked that stereotype to the curb with a pointed thread on reducing unwanted pregnancies. And her sights are set directly at men.

She wrote a Cliff’s Notes version of her thread on her blog:

If you want to stop abortion, you need to prevent unwanted pregnancies. And men are 100% responsible for unwanted pregnancies. No for real, they are. Perhaps you are thinking: IT TAKES TWO! And yes, it does take two for _intentional_ pregnancies.

But ALL unwanted pregnancies are caused by the irresponsible ejaculations of men. Period. Don’t believe me? Let me walk you through it. Let’s start with this: women can only get pregnant about 2 days each month. And that’s for a limited number of years.

Here’s the whole thread. It’s long, but totally worth the read.

Blair’s controversial tweet storm have been liked hundreds of thousands of time, with the original tweet earning nearly 200,000 likes since it was posted on Thursday, September, 13.

The reactions have earned her both praise and scorn.

Most of the scorn was from men.

But Blair wouldn’t budge.

For other men, the tweet thread was a real eye-opener.

Women everywhere applauded Blair’s bold thread.

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diannemharris
4 days ago
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hannahdraper
4 days ago
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Washington, DC
diannemharris
4 days ago
I wish I could star your reply
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fxer
4 days ago
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come see my band; Irresponsible Ejaculations
Bend, Oregon
hannahdraper
4 days ago
No thanks, I've seen enough of those in my life.

Killing god in small town America

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My colleague in the English department, Michael Lackey, published a letter in our local small town newspaper, the Stevens County Times. I think it needs wider distribution!

Atheism is coming to America, and it is conservative Christians who are bringing it here. During the Nazi period, around 95 percent of Germans identified as Christian. But today, just a little more than 75 years later, almost 60 percent of Germans identify as either non-religious or atheist. What happened?

On the surface, it might seem that atheists infiltrated society and persuaded Germans to dismiss or reject God. But there is little evidence to support this interpretation. More likely is the following: Hitler and the Nazis were self-described conservative Christians. When Hitler first came to power he declared in a speech: “It is Christians and not international atheists who now stand at the head of Germany.” It was through their conservative version of Christianity that Hitler and the Nazis were able to make the case for criminalizing, violating, and eventually exterminating Jews, Gays, Gypsies, Immigrants, and many Others. Germans today know what a fanatical version of conservative Christianity can lead to (not all versions of Christianity lead to horrific behavior), which, in part, explains why so many contemporary Germans reject God and religion.

I don’t believe that Trump will do in America what Hitler did in Germany, but the overwhelming support for Trump by conservative Christians will lead, I believe, to the same cultural transformation in America that occurred in Germany. Many (and I even believe a majority of) Americans will eventually say: “Look at Trump and his conservative Christian base. These people support perpetual lying, belittling the disabled, criminalizing immigrants, degrading women and minorities, supporting white supremacists, and so much more. In good conscience, not only must I reject Trump, but I must also reject the conservative version of Christianity of which he is a part.”

In thirty years from now, when people ask the question, “who killed God in America,” the answer will not be “the atheists.” It will be the conservative Christians who supported Trump.

Sources: For the 95 percent statistic of Germans who were church-affiliated Christians, see James Carroll’s book Constantine’s Sword: The Church and the Jews (28).

For the nearly 60 percent statistic of non-religious and atheist Germans today, follow this link to the Washington Post article: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2015/04/14/map-these-are-the-worlds-least-religious-countries/

I’m slightly more pessimistic — one thing we’re seeing is how flexible Christian morality is, and while it’s obvious to some of us how hypocritical many Christians are being, the religion still has a lot of resilience. We shall have to wait and see if Trump finally breaks many peoples’ faith.

After that bit of pessimism, though, you have to read the other letter in the paper. The Morris community church is evolving, a rather ironic headline given that this is the local very conservative church, which does not believe in that heathenish notion of evolution. “Evolving”, in this case, means “Our attendance has plummeted and we can’t pay our pastor and we’re selling off our church building”. Yay!

After 30 plus years of having regular Sunday morning services, Morris Community Church is transitioning to a new model of doing church.

Over the last number years, there have been many changes to the paradigm of church life in America. Those changes and transitions have made waves in big cities, and we believe are now rippling to our small, midwest town.

MCC embraced this change by moving from weekly services to church as a lifestyle. Our focus is on discipleship, relationship, and being the body of Christ in and among our communities. Two major factors have brought us to this decision: spiritual and practical.

Spiritually, we feel it is time for our body to do something different in our community. We have the utmost respect for the other churches in Stevens County. In no way is our shift a judgment of them and what they feel God is leading them to do. We pray for blessing for each congregation that the kingdom can advance through their service to the community. At the same time, we feel God is leading us to a different model. Instead of brick and mortar, our foundations are relationships. In 1 Corinthians, Paul writes how we, the people, are the church. With that, church can be anywhere; a coffee shop, a garage, a basement, or at work. We will strive to bring the gospel everywhere we go and aim to serve those in need by being influences in our communities seven days a week.

Practically, our congregation size has dramatically decreased this year. Our senior pastor, Pat Franey, had to come off paid staff and currently is an IT Technician with Morris Electronics. We now meet as an corporate body twice a month; one Saturday for a potluck and worship service and one Sunday for a traditional service. We can continue to meet our financial responsibilities at this time, but it is clear that removing any debts would best fit our current situation.

Being true to the new model we feel God is calling us to, and embracing the practicals in front of us, we are selling our building in hopes to take the proceeds to bless those in need in our community and start from a clean slate.

Maybe Michael Lackey is a True Prophet.

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acdha
10 days ago
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It’d easy to forget how dishonest the more strident Christians can be: 94% of Evangelicals voted for Trump but I’ll be shocked if the number who admit it in 10 years is much over 30%
Washington, DC
diannemharris
10 days ago
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They Might Be Giants - The Communists Have the Music (Official Audio)

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From: ParticleMen
Duration: 02:36

I got handed an Ayn Rand sandwich
straight from a can it tasted so bland
I asked a lass to pass me a glass
of Engel’s Conditions of the Working Class

right away they dragged me to the committee
to explain my un-American activity
they’re gonna see they made a mistake
if they’d only let me play my mixtape

I’m not partial to the martial
or the plutocrats in their beaver hats
and the fascists have the outfits
but I don’t care for the outfits
what I care about is music
and the communists have the music

I hear a melody
and just as suddenly
I know who I’m
supposed to be

I don’t need a rationale
to sing the Internationale
I only need to plug in the headphone jack
so I can listen to my backing track

I’m not jealous of the zealous
or anarchics with guitar picks
and the fascists have their outfits
but I don’t care for the outfits
what I care about is music
and the communists have the music
yes the communists have the music
oh the communists have the music

I hear a melody
and just as suddenly
I know who I’m
supposed to be

I’m not partial to the martial
or the plutocrats in their beaver hats
and the fascists have the outfits
but I don’t care for the outfits
what I care about is music
and the communists have the music

Dial-A-Song Video Week 32.

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diannemharris
11 days ago
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jepler
11 days ago
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Earth, Sol system, Western spiral arm
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