Post of the Week

Post of the Week


Post of the Week
March 3, 2000 7:50PM (UTC)

Gay Politics

Politics
hamp simmons - 10:00 pm PST - Feb 28, 2000 - #3646 of 3657

Speaking of frat boys, I have a great story that is totally off thread, but I'm going to tell it anyway. When I was in college, my boyfriend was in Kappa Sigma Fraternity at another school. He left his Kappa Sig jersey in my laundry basket after one of his week end visits and for several months after that I slept in it. (Actually, I often wonder what happened to it, since I don't recall tossing it out. Hmm......interesting sidethought, but.....)
So, one night, three friends and I pulled an all nighter studying for a poli-sci test and I put on the jersey at some point and wore it the rest of the night. That morning, we all three staggered over to the poli-sci test and then staggerered to the cafeteria for lunch. As on many campuses, each frat had a table. The Kappa Sigs had the one right next to the door and as I approached, (unmindful of the fact that I was still in my KS jersey) they all looked up and started to greet me.....until they saw who it was: Centenary's only out homo.
By the time I had gotten to the end of the lunch line, the entire cafeteria was abuzz over the fact that the only known fag on campus was wearing a KS football jersey. Already, sides had been taken, the TKE's thought it was funny, the KA's were offended (I had crashed Old South in drag with my Mammy the year before), the Theta Chi's were confused (as usual), the Chi Omega's were conflicted, half of them dating Kappa Sigs, and the Betas simply looked down their noses at any activity that did not merit attention from girls of their social standing. The president of Chi O came over and joined me at lunch in solidarity. Several of the major freak druggie boys also came over to sit with me since they thought the whole thing was a great hoot. I was mystified that wearing a football jersey could honestly become one of the most controversial things I had ever done.
Finally, I took my tray to the dishwasher and began my exit from the cafeteria. None of my staunch allies had the balls to walk out with me but since balls has never been something I lacked, I walked as casually as possible toward the door. Two Kappa Sigs intercepted me, the President and the Secretary, two of the sexiest boys on campus, and the taller one said, "We couldn't help but notice your jersey, would you mind telling us exactly where you got it?"
I smiled, very sweetly and told the truth: "My boyfriend spent the night and left it." Their jaws dropped open and they seemed to have nothing else to say, so I walked between them and on to the door.
They rushed back to their table, the entire fraternity huddled and then in unison, they all looked at me, then around the table at one other. For weeks, a pledge was stationed in front of my apartment to watch for the errant KS member who was visiting my den of inequity.
It soon became one of the biggest jokes on campus and I was named the Sweetheart of Kappa Sig by the campus paper. Unfortunately, the Sigs never developed a sense of humor and out and out refused to put my pic on their page in the yearbook. They never discovered who my boyfriend was and rumours continued until my graduation as to who the owner of my Kappa Sig football jersey might be. Of course, after getting so much attention for my choice of wardrobe, I began to wear it at least once a week, just to keep their anxiety levels up. For the next three years, I would don my jersey, wander the campus and smile and wave at cute Kappa Sig boys and smile suggestively as they blushed.

Advertisement:

Your favorite kids' books, those of us born before 1970

Books
Mary E - 11:30 am PST - Mar 2, 2000 - #619 of 626

I promise not to be contrary today. One of my favourite childhood books was "Ping." This book wasn't given to me by a parent --I found it lying in the street. It was one of the first books I can remember reading entirely on my own. Ping was a duckling who lived in China. Everyday his owner would let him and the other ducks swim out on the lake on their own, but they always had to come back at a certain time. The last duck to return always got a light swat on the behind with a small switch. One day Ping had been dawdling, so he knew that he was going to be the duck to get swatted. So, instead of returning, he swam away and got into all kinds of trouble (but he had some interesting adventures, too). He nearly ended up being turned into Peking duck for one human family's dinner, but the son took pity on him and let him go. In the end, Ping finds his owner and returns to him--and accepts the light swat this time.
This story has really stayed with me all these years. In one way it's one of those moralisitic tales parents love to spring on children--see, if you don't accept the loving mild, correction of your elders, you'll get into even worse jams! But it is rather true to life--some of the worse muddles I've gotten into as a child and an adult have been because I was trying to avoid some smaller problem. Irrational, but human.
I don't know the author of this book. I'd be interested in finding out if it is an actual Chinese story (all that emphasis on submiting to your betters seems awfully Confucian!) or if it was simply a story set in China written by a Western author.

The Diallo Verdict

Social Issues
Clem Kadiddlehopper - 10:44 pm PST - Feb 25, 2000 - #11 of 170

The rules are, shoot until a suspect is neutralized or down. There are no intentional 'woundings' in street cop training; that's special weapons and tactics area. The theory being, if you are going to shoot someone, it is in response to a lethal threat. You don't meet a lethal threat with a non-lethal one.
There is no magical 'one shot' instant deaths like Hollywood portrays; no flying across the room, no gaping entrance holes ala 'exploding blood-packs' implanted in an actor's clothes, and suprisingly little blood at the moment someone is shot. It is common for an average sized suspect to soak up several shots before he physically responds in a telling way that would indicate he is being hit. The shooter's momentum is always 2 to 3 shots ahead of the victim's response, which is why it is common for there to be shots fired after a suspect falls. ...

Advertisement:

What you have is two parties, both acting reasonably under the circumstances. Diallo may have thought he was going to be robbed, which was reasonable for him to think under the circumstances. The officers believed that Diallo's movements of back-pedaling while reaching behind him, then producing a black object was textbook behavior of a suspect attempting to produce a weapon, and was reasonable for them to believe under the circumstances. Both parties were wrong, with terribly tragic consequences. That does not equate to murder.

Gay Politics

Politics
hamp simmons - 10:00 pm PST - Feb 28, 2000 - #3646 of 3657

Speaking of frat boys, I have a great story that is totally off thread, but I'm going to tell it anyway. When I was in college, my boyfriend was in Kappa Sigma Fraternity at another school. He left his Kappa Sig jersey in my laundry basket after one of his week end visits and for several months after that I slept in it. (Actually, I often wonder what happened to it, since I don't recall tossing it out. Hmm......interesting sidethought, but.....)
So, one night, three friends and I pulled an all nighter studying for a poli-sci test and I put on the jersey at some point and wore it the rest of the night. That morning, we all three staggered over to the poli-sci test and then staggerered to the cafeteria for lunch. As on many campuses, each frat had a table. The Kappa Sigs had the one right next to the door and as I approached, (unmindful of the fact that I was still in my KS jersey) they all looked up and started to greet me.....until they saw who it was: Centenary's only out homo.
By the time I had gotten to the end of the lunch line, the entire cafeteria was abuzz over the fact that the only known fag on campus was wearing a KS football jersey. Already, sides had been taken, the TKE's thought it was funny, the KA's were offended (I had crashed Old South in drag with my Mammy the year before), the Theta Chi's were confused (as usual), the Chi Omega's were conflicted, half of them dating Kappa Sigs, and the Betas simply looked down their noses at any activity that did not merit attention from girls of their social standing. The president of Chi O came over and joined me at lunch in solidarity. Several of the major freak druggie boys also came over to sit with me since they thought the whole thing was a great hoot. I was mystified that wearing a football jersey could honestly become one of the most controversial things I had ever done.
Finally, I took my tray to the dishwasher and began my exit from the cafeteria. None of my staunch allies had the balls to walk out with me but since balls has never been something I lacked, I walked as casually as possible toward the door. Two Kappa Sigs intercepted me, the President and the Secretary, two of the sexiest boys on campus, and the taller one said, "We couldn't help but notice your jersey, would you mind telling us exactly where you got it?"
I smiled, very sweetly and told the truth: "My boyfriend spent the night and left it." Their jaws dropped open and they seemed to have nothing else to say, so I walked between them and on to the door.
They rushed back to their table, the entire fraternity huddled and then in unison, they all looked at me, then around the table at one other. For weeks, a pledge was stationed in front of my apartment to watch for the errant KS member who was visiting my den of inequity.
It soon became one of the biggest jokes on campus and I was named the Sweetheart of Kappa Sig by the campus paper. Unfortunately, the Sigs never developed a sense of humor and out and out refused to put my pic on their page in the yearbook. They never discovered who my boyfriend was and rumours continued until my graduation as to who the owner of my Kappa Sig football jersey might be. Of course, after getting so much attention for my choice of wardrobe, I began to wear it at least once a week, just to keep their anxiety levels up. For the next three years, I would don my jersey, wander the campus and smile and wave at cute Kappa Sig boys and smile suggestively as they blushed.

Your favorite kids' books, those of us born before 1970

Books
Mary E - 11:30 am PST - Mar 2, 2000 - #619 of 626

I promise not to be contrary today. One of my favourite childhood books was "Ping." This book wasn't given to me by a parent --I found it lying in the street. It was one of the first books I can remember reading entirely on my own. Ping was a duckling who lived in China. Everyday his owner would let him and the other ducks swim out on the lake on their own, but they always had to come back at a certain time. The last duck to return always got a light swat on the behind with a small switch. One day Ping had been dawdling, so he knew that he was going to be the duck to get swatted. So, instead of returning, he swam away and got into all kinds of trouble (but he had some interesting adventures, too). He nearly ended up being turned into Peking duck for one human family's dinner, but the son took pity on him and let him go. In the end, Ping finds his owner and returns to him--and accepts the light swat this time.
This story has really stayed with me all these years. In one way it's one of those moralisitic tales parents love to spring on children--see, if you don't accept the loving mild, correction of your elders, you'll get into even worse jams! But it is rather true to life--some of the worse muddles I've gotten into as a child and an adult have been because I was trying to avoid some smaller problem. Irrational, but human.
I don't know the author of this book. I'd be interested in finding out if it is an actual Chinese story (all that emphasis on submiting to your betters seems awfully Confucian!) or if it was simply a story set in China written by a Western author.

The Diallo Verdict

Social Issues
Clem Kadiddlehopper - 10:44 pm PST - Feb 25, 2000 - #11 of 170

The rules are, shoot until a suspect is neutralized or down. There are no intentional 'woundings' in street cop training; that's special weapons and tactics area. The theory being, if you are going to shoot someone, it is in response to a lethal threat. You don't meet a lethal threat with a non-lethal one.
There is no magical 'one shot' instant deaths like Hollywood portrays; no flying across the room, no gaping entrance holes ala 'exploding blood-packs' implanted in an actor's clothes, and suprisingly little blood at the moment someone is shot. It is common for an average sized suspect to soak up several shots before he physically responds in a telling way that would indicate he is being hit. The shooter's momentum is always 2 to 3 shots ahead of the victim's response, which is why it is common for there to be shots fired after a suspect falls. ...

What you have is two parties, both acting reasonably under the circumstances. Diallo may have thought he was going to be robbed, which was reasonable for him to think under the circumstances. The officers believed that Diallo's movements of back-pedaling while reaching behind him, then producing a black object was textbook behavior of a suspect attempting to produce a weapon, and was reasonable for them to believe under the circumstances. Both parties were wrong, with terribly tragic consequences. That does not equate to murder.
The definition of 'acceptable human error' is a judgment based on an erroneous perception which was reasonable to form under the circumstances; even if those consequences are tragic.
I watched some of the testimony, and it is evident these officers are not the fascist, amoral, Gestapo that race-baiting sensationalist Al Sharpton makes them [and every other incident] out to be. These officers have to live with this incident, which for any person of conscience would be exceedingly difficult to do. Guilt can exact an immense toll on the human spirit unlike any imposition by law.


Post of the Week

MORE FROM Post of the Week

BROWSE SALON.COM
COMPLETELY AD FREE,
FOR THE NEXT HOUR

Read Now, Pay Later - no upfront
registration for 1-Hour Access

Click Here
7-Day Access and Monthly
Subscriptions also available
No tracking or personal data collection
beyond name and email address

•••


Fearless journalism
in your inbox every day

Sign up for our free newsletter

• • •