Tag Archives: CBC

CBC and the Propagation of Ignorance

Every time the adults play the “we just need to sell newspapers” game, children end up paying for it.

A couple of years ago, when I first started the in-depth research for my book, CBC was on my list of Very Useful Entities. CBC took a risk with I, Pedophile, and they were pretty good with the facts. (No one is perfect.) Here’s a screenshot from their article Four Misconceptions about Pedophiles:

That was two years ago.

Today, they seem to have forgotten their own work. This past month, as more sexual offences in the church have been brought to light, CBC has chosen to use the word “pedophile” as a synonym for “child sexual abuser”:

The secret life of ‘one of the most prolific sexual abusers in Canadian history: Pedophile priest at centre of Nova Scotia class-action lawsuit sexually abused more than 100 kids in Ontario

Southdown Institute: A ‘shield’ for the Church or a place to provide ‘meaningful’ help for pedophile priests?

‘There’s no room for forgiveness’: Pope’s sexual abuse letter meaningless to survivor

This is a strange thing to do if one is an institution whose mandate is to inform and enlighten (though the next word is “entertain”… and entertaining the punters with scandal is a sure way to sell newspapers).

Even thought it may not sell newspapers, please stop doing this.

Just stop it. Mark Gollom, you are responsible for a headline. Jack Julian and Jon Tattrie you are responsible for another. Stop misusing the words. Tell your colleagues to stop misusing the words.

Everyone has to talk about sexual abuse if we’re ever going to improve the problem. We can’t talk about it until we use the proper language. If we blame all the blue flowers because the purple flowers are taking over, we’re not doing anything useful. It’s a waste of everyone’s time, and it leaves children to take the brunt of it all.

CBC, stop propagating ignorance. Stop propagating hatred for something we don’t understand. You made a promise to inform and enlighten: take it seriously.

You’ve Brought It on Yourselves

Activity Being Avoided: nothing, really: I’m just waiting for Windows to update on my other computer.
Music In My Head: Tin Man – The Avett Brothers (Hey, at least it’s a different song.)
Tea Being Drunk: none. I’m trying to not float away.
Book Being Read: A Man for All Seasons – Robert Bolt

In an effort to avoid branding, I decided (upon finishing Homology and then again upon finishing To Be Human Again) that I would write about something other than sex. It’s an awesome topic–and I use the adjective literally, not colloquially–but fitting into a box just isn’t my thing.

You monsters, though, you just won’t let it alone. Every time someone proposes an excellent idea, some eejit takes everything back a couple of light-years. For chrissake, I just finished a book for you monsters, demonstrating that there’s reason for everything deemed “deviant”, and you ignore me.

Well. That means I just have to write more.

A recent issue of The Walrus had an article that is good, in that it offers reason and a possible solution to a problem that has not been solved in the history of humankind. It’s aptly entitled Why Would Someone Choose to Be a Monster? Indeed. No one chooses such a life–and no one is asking that pedophiles be allowed to go on their merry way; the point is that we come to understand their perspective so that we can find a way to accommodate their needs without people getting hurt.

And then CBC–written and edited by people who, by virtue of residency and calling, are obliged to be unswerving readers of The Walrussensationalises the idiocy of our justice system with the ever-so-useful term “dangerous offender” in the headline.

Mr. Lund, the “dangerous offender”, has been sentenced to indefinite incarceration; the article notes that he spent more than half his pre-trial incarceration in segregation.

This is a human being. What makes his life any less-important than the lives of the people he’s hurt?

Currently, I’m working on a nice, often-pleasant love story. You monsters, however, have left me in a position where the books beside my bed are starting to display a disturbing tone (again) and the characters are starting to find a place in my head. You monsters have boxed me in, so I’ll have to find a way to use it to an advantage–anyone’s advantage.

I leave you with a video that is a socially-acceptable step in the right direction. Apply it to sexual mental illness. Don’t take us backwards, please.

 

Pop

*Activity Being Procrastinated: rewrites
*Music In My Head: Alice – Avril Lavigne
*Tea: mango and passionfruit
*Books Being Read: The Indian Clerk – David Leavitt, The Empty Family – Colm Toibin

This year at Christmas, my sisters and I tried something new: our presents to each other were the promise of a Sister Weekend. That would be all four of us in a hotel room, away from the distraction of our families and dishes and laundry. With lots of tea. And an obligation to eat dessert at every meal.

We terrorised Buffalo this past weekend.

It was everything we thought it would be.

Of course, it was the mealtime discussions that provided the most entertainment for the people around us. Sunday morning – a 7 a.m. breakfast at IHOP (we couldn’t fit in breakfast and dessert, so we had dessert for breakfast) – was a debate about nicknames. Sister #2 has been known as “Proximity Child” for a couple of years because she lives in the same town as our parents and therefore reaps the benefits of being close to people who always have extra homemade bread, etc. Sister #3 has been known as “Golden Child” since we were teenagers because she never seems to get in trouble with the Parental Units, no matter what she does. Sister #4 is hereby known as “Whiny Child” because I have to get her back for the new nickname she gave me.

I, Sister #0, refuse to answer to “Bubble Child”.

While you may believe I live in a bubble, it’s rude to mock the bubble publicly.

Besides. I like my bubble. A lot. So there. Stay out of my bubble.

My bubble has taken a bit of a beating the last couple of weeks. Actually, I’m not sure it’s even intact anymore. It may have an ozone-hole-sized hole in it. It has nothing to do with greenhouse gases, so you should just can the jokes about digestive gases.

Two weeks ago, Sri Sathya Sai Baba died. On Easter Sunday. While I may have certain opinions about the day they chose to take him off life-support, no one has asked about these opinions so I won’t voice them. My client, the one who is a devotee of Sai Baba, is doing alright now that the ordeal is over. The bubble-battering was done by CBC: their announcement of Sri Sathya Sai’s death was, by no means, an obituary. They included all the sordid details of sex scandals and false miracles. This is what his followers saw the day their god died. All these people – whose lifetime goal is to create peace and happiness in the world through selflessness, who follow the motto “Love all, hurt never” – were greeted with a list of every sin the man was ever accused of.

Bubble Rule: In The Bubble, an obituary must be printed at the time of death. The people who love the deceased – the ones who are still alive and sad – are to be considered before the ones who didn’t know the deceased. An objective article about the person may only be printed a week after the death. Honesty is a good thing, but there’s a time and a place for everything.

The second serious poke to the bubble took place Sunday night. Barack Obama proudly announced that Osama bin Laden had been killed, and that the United States had his body in their custody. He assured the American citizens of the government’s commitment to “liberty and justice for all”.

Even in The Bubble, bin Laden was a bad guy. He – and his followers – are the sort of people bubble-dwellers have a hard time acknowledging. There’s a level of barbarism that just doesn’t make it into my brain: the kind of barbarism that involves a complete lack of humanity. It’s even beyond animalistic. It’s just plain evil.

This Bubble Dweller hoped that the civilised government of a civilised country would never stoop to his level. No civilians would be harmed, no bombs or guns used (because the only purpose to these things is killing). This Bubble Dweller hoped that – because he was human – Osama bin Laden would be arrested and tried, just as any American would be had they done such evil things. Though this Bubble Dweller is completely opposed to capital punishment, lethal injection would have seemed reasonable in this case. We are, after all, human, and are therefore inclined to a certain degree of retaliation.

But, no. Instead, the government denied bin Laden justice and stooped below his level. A manhunt and a body snatch. And photographs of the event.

If any one person had done such a thing, we would be yelling “EVIL!”

Now, people are cheering.  It was a government that did it.  Mob mentality.  I believe William Golding deals with that in Lord of the Flies, does he not?

Bubble Rule: If it’s alive, it must be treated the same way you would like to be treated. We’re coming up to the anniversary of James Connolly’s death, when he was tied to a chair because he was too wounded to stand up for his execution. The British thought they were doing the “liberty and justice for all” thing, too; look at what the world thinks of them now.

This week I’m hiding out within my four walls, trying to repair the bubble. I’m surprised: I always thought spherical shapes were pretty strong. I was also sure that the walls were… I was going to say “flexible”, but I know what my mother would say about me an’ that word so I’ll use the word “impregnable”. I’m going to stop reading the CBC website and return to my writing. At least my characters understand the consequences of their actions.

Oh, wait. Someone outside is cutting the grass, and it smells really, really good. It’s sunny and relatively warm out there. Maybe I’ll poke my head through one of the holes just for another hour.

Yes, I have sexual orientation, yes, please

http://www.cbc.ca/technology/story/2009/02/02/f-strauss-sexual-natures.html

So, if we can’t even communicate with “them” (as if teenagers are some sort of different species, rather than just group of individuals) on the one subject we all live for, would the problem be with “them”, or “us”?

“They” seem to be communicating just fine.

We tell them not to believe everything they read; then we ask them to write things for us to read, and we believe them.

If someone had given me a sex survey in my early adolescence, I would have been offended and filled it out as though I were Puritan.

If someone had given me a sex survey in my late adolescence, I would have lied, and then used it as a check list.

If someone were to give me a sex survey now, I would likely be inclined to use my creative writing abilities to make it entertaining for the reader.

Language discord is a sick thing, dude.