Monday, March 12, 2018

Cruising the Web

The Mirror has the story of an absolutely horrible sex abuse scandal in Britain that has been going on for 40 years.
Up to 1,000 children could have suffered in Britain’s worst known abuse scandal - where sex gangs targeted girls as young as 11.

The rape hell of vulnerable young girls in one town - Telford - went on for a shocking 40 years, the Sunday Mirror can reveal.

As many as 1,000 children could have suffered at the merciless hands of perverts and torturers in Telford since the 1980s.

Girls as young as 11 have been lured from their families to be drugged, beaten and raped in an epidemic that, say victims, is still ongoing.

THREE people were murdered and two others died in tragedies linked to the scandal.
And yes, this sounds like other sex abuse scandals that we've already learned about in other cities in Britain. The details are remarkably similar, especially about how the authorities just turned a blind eye because they were afraid of being called racists.
The Mirror’s 18-month investigation reveals abuse on unprecedented levels. We found:

Social workers knew of abuse in the 1990s but police took a decade to launch a probe

Council staff viewed abused and trafficked children as “prostitutes” instead of victims, according to previously unseen files

Authorities failed to keep details of abusers from Asian communities for fear of “racism”

Police failed to investigate one recent case five times until an MP intervened

One victim said cops tried to stop her finding out why her abusers had not been prosecuted because they feared she would talk to us

The scale of the abuse uncovered in Telford – population 170,000 – is feared to be the most brutal and long-running of all.

The Rotherham toll was put at 1,500 – but that was in a community of 260,000.
Girls as young as 11 were kidnapped and forced into what amounted to sexual slavery as they were gang-raped over and over. They were threatened that if they told, their younger sisters and mothers might be next. The testimony of what these girls suffered is truly horrifying. And yet...the authorities preferred to hide the scandal instead of trying to stop it.
Documents which will be passed to the Home Office reveals authorities knew of the horrors a decade before investigating – and shows how they tried to hamper our probe....

A police investigation called ­Operation Chalice identified more than 100 potential victims abused between 2007 and 2009.

Cops also said there could be as many as 200 perpetrators – but just nine were caged and the case was then closed.

Today our investigation reveals the authorities were told of the abuse epidemic more than a decade before Chalice.

Our probe – backed by documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act – found two predatory paedophiles began targeting girls from a local children’s home in 1981.

One of the abusers earned thousands a night for years trafficking girls around the country for sex with hundreds of men, according to one victim.

In another case, a 14-year-old was groomed by an 18-year-old Asian man in 1985.

After she had his baby he passed her to friends to have sex with and allegedly rape her....

A police investigation called ­Operation Chalice identified more than 100 potential victims abused between 2007 and 2009.

Cops also said there could be as many as 200 perpetrators – but just nine were caged and the case was then closed.

Today our investigation reveals the authorities were told of the abuse epidemic more than a decade before Chalice.

Our probe – backed by documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act – found two predatory paedophiles began targeting girls from a local children’s home in 1981.

One of the abusers earned thousands a night for years trafficking girls around the country for sex with hundreds of men, according to one victim.

In another case, a 14-year-old was groomed by an 18-year-old Asian man in 1985.

After she had his baby he passed her to friends to have sex with and allegedly rape her.
Some of the girls who tried to escape were murdered, one along with her sister and mother. Women tell of begging authorities for help for themselves or their daughters and being turned away. How could this go on so long in a civilized country? Well, it happened elsewhere in Britain. In the city of ROtherham, authorities think thta as many as 1400 children were sexually abused, but the authorities hid it all.
A report commissioned in the wake of revelations that "at least" 1,400 children were sexually exploited in Rotherham has branded the local authority "not fit for purpose" and left it facing takeover by government commissioners. How did it reach this point?

The issue of child sex abuse in Rotherham first came to light in November 2010 when five men from the town's Asian community were jailed for sexual offences against underage girls.

But suspicions were already growing that the scale of the town's problem was far more widespread.

Almost two years later, in September 2012, Andrew Norfolk, a journalist on The Times newspaper, published an investigation which revealed a confidential 2010 police report had warned thousands of such crimes were being committed in South Yorkshire each year by networks of Asian men....

Rotherham was not the only community in the North and the Midlands to have uncovered such abuse. There have also been arrests or prosecutions of groups of men in 11 towns and cities, including Oldham, Rochdale and Derby.

"In the other cases, overwhelmingly, they were men of Pakistani origin and we need to understand why this has been happening," said Mr Norfolk.

He described a previous report into gang exploitation as a "missed opportunity" because of its failure to look at the proportion of men of Pakistani origin committing such offences.

Yet, despite the concerns, in 2012 no further prosecutions for child sex exploitation took place in Rotherham.

However, the council did say "improved public awareness" had helped it identify more young girls at risk of sexual exploitation in the town.

In January 2013, the town once again fell under the scrutiny of MPs. This time it was the borough council which appeared before the Home Affairs Select Committee to answer questions about the lack of prosecutions.

Mr Vaz said the council had not done enough since the 2010 prosecutions.

"In Lancashire there were 100 prosecutions the year before last, in South Yorkshire there were no prosecutions," he said.

"We're talking about hundreds of victims, of vulnerable young girls, who have not been protected because, at the end of the day, what people are looking for are prosecutions."
When Professor Alexis Jay was commissioned to write a report on what had gone wrong in Rotherham, he made it pretty clear that blame could be spread among many in authority.
Children as young as 11 were raped by multiple perpetrators, abducted, trafficked to other cities in England, beaten and intimidated, it said.

The report, commissioned by Rotherham Borough Council, revealed there had been three previous inquiries.

Council leader Roger Stone said he would step down with immediate effect.

Mr Stone, who has been the leader since 2003, said: "I believe it is only right that as leader I take responsibility for the historic failings described so clearly."

The inquiry team noted fears among council staff of being labelled "racist" if they focused on victims' descriptions of the majority of abusers as "Asian" men.

'Doused in petrol'

Professor Alexis Jay, who wrote the latest report, said there had been "blatant" collective failures by the council's leadership, senior managers had "underplayed" the scale of the problem and South Yorkshire Police had failed to prioritise the issue....

The report found: "Several staff described their nervousness about identifying the ethnic origins of perpetrators for fear of being thought as racist; others remembered clear direction from their managers not to do so."

....Failures by those charged with protecting children happened despite three reports between 2002 and 2006 which both the council and police were aware of, and "which could not have been clearer in the description of the situation in Rotherham".

Prof Jay said the first of these reports was "effectively suppressed" because senior officers did not believe the data. The other two were ignored, she said.

The inquiry team found that in the early-2000s when a group of professionals attempted to monitor a number of children believed to be at risk, "managers gave little help or support to their efforts".

The report revealed some people at a senior level in the police and children's social care thought the extent of the problem was being "exaggerated".

Prof Jay said: "The authorities involved have a great deal to answer for."
And if it was going on in several cities and these poor children were getting distributed around the country as sex slaves, I would guess that the network of sexual abusers involved is much larger than we have any idea of now.

I don't want to downplay the harassment that actresses in the #MeToo movement in Hollywood, but this is so much worse, so much more widespread, and so much more egregious due to the levels of abuse and the willful blindness of authorities to what children were suffering. This should be the subject of outcries across the globe so that other places where this is happening will come to light and the predators be stopped. How many more of these sorts of abuse stories are going on in other parts of Europe or the Mideast or Asia or Africa and we never find out about them. Yet here in America, we an spend a week discussing a guy who exposed himself to a woman but let her leave without touching her or a woman who had a bad date with a big star who seemed intent on using her for sexual gratification rather than building a true relationship. Yeah, those stories are appalling, but these are children being repeatedly raped with their families being threatened.

Meanwhile, as Allahpundit points out, we have outrage across the internet because a female worker at Oxford University was shown cleaning off chalk grafitti celebrating Universal Women's Day on that very day. Oh, the outrage! Clearly, there is nothing more shocking or sexist going on in Britain than a woman doing her job on such a day. And Oxford had to issue an apology. Allahpundit is puzzled.
A cleaner shouldn’t have been asked to clean? Or the school should have asked a male cleaner to do it, which would have set off a different round of hand-wringing over the symbolism? Or chalkings celebrating International Women’s Day shouldn’t be cleaned, period?

No matter. What matters is repentance and a promise to go and sin no more.

It can’t be that people honestly believe liberal Oxford University has it in for women, so much so that they’d rush out a janitor to wipe away a chalking specifically celebrating IWD — and that they’d purposely choose a woman to do it to boot, just to maximize the embarrassment. Imagine the intensity of the misogyny one would need to feel to arrange a slight that petty, which was only noticed and publicized through happenstance. This is a school that recently announced it would give women more time than men on math and computer science exams in the name of boosting their success in STEM fields, and now it’s being accused of this. There’s no benefit of the doubt in virtue-signaling.
But thousands of young girls being raped for decades...let's not ruffle feathers by investigating those crimes because of who the perpetrators might be. Lord help us!

There is nothing particularly surprising about the results of this survey by Heterodox Academy. They surveyed college students about their feelings about expressing their opinions on college campuses. Some results:
53% of students surveyed reported that they do not think their college or university frequently encourages students to consider a wide variety of viewpoints and perspectives.

32% of conservatives (vs. 8% of liberals) were very reluctant to discuss politics in the classroom.

29% of conservatives (vs. 8% of liberals) were very reluctant to discuss gender in the classroom.

30% of conservatives (vs. 15% of liberals) were very reluctant to discuss race in the classroom.
That is actually lower than I might have expected for the percentage of conservatives who feel uncomfortable expressing their views in the classroom. That's good that about two-thirds do feel comfortable. However, I wonder what other minority group (and let's face it - on most college campuses, social conservatives are a minority) would professors and administrators be content to see that members of that group feel uncomfortable and marginalized on their campuses today.

Once again, Donald Trump goes for a good crowd-pleasing line without any indication that he knows anything about how the Supreme Court has interpreted the Constitution in recent years. He gave a speech in Pennsylvania touting the idea that drug dealers should get the death penalty.
While addressing crowds at a rally in Pennsylvania, the President claimed that countries like Singapore and China have lower recorded rates of drug crimes because of the punishments they enact.

“You kill one person, you get the death penalty in many states, or you get life imprisonment,” he said. Mr Trump claimed the “only way to solve the drug problem is through toughness”, adding: “These people are killing our kids and they’re killing our families, and we have to do something…I think it’s a discussion that we have to start thinking about.”

“A drug dealer will kill 2,000, 3,000, 5,000 people in the course of his or her lives…you can kill thousands of people and go to jail for 30 days,” the president said during the rally.
Personally, I support the death penalty and might be willing to support a well-crafted law giving the death penalty for repeat drug dealers. However, that is not what the Supreme Court has said. If they struck down the death penalty for a man who raped and permanently injured his eight-year-old stepdaughter, I don't seee them allowing the death penalty for drug dealers. Anthony Kennedy believes that the death penalty should only be for homicides and most of the more liberal justices don't want the death penalty at all so there we are.

The news from California's bullet train keeps getting worse.
The price of the California bullet train project jumped sharply Friday when the state rail authority announced that the cost of connecting Los Angeles to San Francisco would be $77.3 billion and could rise as high as $98.1 billion — an uptick of at least $13 billion from estimates two years ago.

The rail authority also said the earliest trains could operate on a partial system between San Francisco and Bakersfield would be 2029 — four years later than the previous projection. The full system would not begin operating until 2033.

The disclosures are contained in a 114-page business plan that was issued in draft form Friday by the rail authority before public hearings and formal submission to the Legislature in about 60 days.

The new estimates will force California's leadership to double down on its political and financial commitments if it wants to see the system completed, against a backdrop of rising costs, years of delays, strident litigation and backlashes in communities where homes, businesses, farms and environmental preserves will have to give up land to the rail's right-of-way.
But hey! They've dug themselves into this idiotic hole so they don't seem to have any other idea than keeping on digging.
A spokesman for Gov. Jerry Brown, who since the 1980s has championed high-speed rail, said the disclosures do not change the strong support he expressed in his recent State of the State address, when he said: "I make no bones about it. I like trains and I like high-speed trains even better."
What a mess. It's as if California politicians saw what happened during Boston's Big Dig and said, "Hey, Boston! Hold our beer."

And with all the miserable news these days, here is your feel-good story for the week.
A teenager has been rewarded for her kindness with a college scholarship after she was photographed cutting up food for a 78-year-old diner who couldn’t do it himself.

18-year-old Evoni Williams works as a waitress in a Texas Waffle House in La Marque, Texas to save money for college.

During her shift, an elderly man who was on oxygen came in for a bite to eat.

When he was served his meal, a customer overhead him mention to Williams that his hands don’t work well.

According to a Facebook post uploaded by Laura Wolf, Williams immediately began cutting up his food.

Wolf’s post reads: “I don’t know her name but I heard this elderly man tell her his hands don’t work too good. He was also on oxygen and struggling to breathe.

“Without hesitation, she took his plate and began cutting up his ham.

“This may seem small but to him, I’m sure it was huge.”

Wolf concluded her post: "I’m thankful to have seen this act of kindness and caring at the start of my day while everything in this world seems so negative. If we could all be like this waitress and take time to offer a helping hand…”

Wolf’s post documenting William’s act of kindness quickly went viral - and thousands of people expressed their desire to thank and reward the teen.

According to KHOU, Texas Southern University has awarded the 18-year-old a $16,000 scholarship so that she can fulfill her dreams of studying business management

And the mayor of La Marque decided to show his gratitude for Williams as well - by declaring March 8, 2018 Evoni “Nini” Williams Day, a day in her honour.

Moved to tears by the response, Williams told KHOU: “I got my own day.

“It’s something I would do any other day."

As for Adrien Charpentier, the 78-year-old customer, he seemed pleasantly surprised he had ended up on “Facebooks.”
While this story is so very sweet and has such a happy ending, I guess it also says something about our society today that such ordinary kindness seems remarkable enough to go viral on the internet and merit a scholarship.