Saturday, February 13, 2010

Solutions, not excuses

Female biology professor kills three at the University of Alabama after being denied tenure:

Three faculty members at the University of Alabama in Huntsville were shot to death, and three other people were seriously wounded at a biology faculty meeting on Friday afternoon, university officials said.

The Associated Press reported that a biology professor, identified as Amy Bishop, was charged with murder.

According to a faculty member, the professor had applied for tenure, been turned down, and appealed the decision. She learned on Friday that she had been denied once again.

Sadly, women are feeling pressure and turning to violence at times, just like men but posts like this one at Newsweek by Kate Dailey will just keep talking about the rarity of female violence, and lead to excuses, rather than solutions.

For less PC reading on female violence, try Patricia Pearson's When She Was Bad...: Violent Women and the Myth of Innocence.

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Friday, February 12, 2010

Why third party information is important in investigations

Forensic psychologists learn to be very thorough in our work, I assume (hope) that police investigators learn this also. However, I was a bit dismayed at the school shooting at Inskip Elementary in Knoxville where Principal Elisa Luna and Assistant Principal Amy Brace were shot by teacher Mark Foster.

My dismay comes from reading at that an anonymous emailer (who later turned out to be the suspect's brother) told the school that Foster was a "ticking time bomb." Naturally, this is not enough evidence to fire someone over, but it ought to be taken seriously, especially when there were two incidents reported at the school, involving yelling at students and grabbing one. An investigation on Foster was opened up but it seems the investigators did not go far enough. The most glaring mistake the investigators made was not contacting a boss from Oak Ridge that Foster threatened to shoot:

10News looked deeper into the school system's investigation on Mark Foster.

Despite the school system's repeated efforts, they missed an important link in their investigation.

Johnny Sellers' email listed Terry Mullins.

School investigators said they tried to contact Mullins twice, but never reached him.

10News quickly found Mullins Wednesday night. He told us Mark Foster was fired from his company, Oak Ridge Tool Engineering, in 1995 for absenteeism.

The CEO said a disgruntled Foster tried to return a few weeks later to shoot him.

Mullins also told us Foster was taken to Ridgeview after his arrest.

School investigators never heard Mullins' story.

Mullins told 10News he never got the messages investigators said they left for him.

Forensic psychologists are supposed to use third party information when we do a violence risk assessment. This means talking to family, friends and yes, co-workers and bosses. I realize that police investigators are not forensic psychologists but I would think they would be just as thorough or more so, given the stakes in these cases. The case should not have been closed until this boss had been reached. If not by phone, they could have gone in person, Oak Ridge is not that far. It is a big deal and not something to overlook or dismiss so easily. Surely, a little more effort on the part of the investigators would have been warranted.

A good book on workplace violence and how to avoid it is Mark Braverman's Preventing Workplace Violence: A Guide for Employers and Practitioners.


"Police said the stiletto penetrated the eye socket and touched the victim's brain."

A reader sent me this article about a man who was attacked by Staci Hargreaves, 33, from Stalybridge, Cheshire, in a cab:

A woman has appeared in court charged with wounding after a man was stabbed through the eye with a stiletto heel.

Gavin Taylor, 28, remains seriously ill in hospital after the incident last Sunday.

He suffered the injury in the back of a taxi while travelling home from a night out in Huddersfield with his girlfriend.

A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said: "At around 2am on Sunday, police received reports of a serious assault which occurred in a vehicle travelling through Huddersfield town centre.

"A 28-year-old man was struck to the head and taken to Huddersfield Royal Infirmary.

"He was subsequently transferred to Leeds General Infirmary and is currently in a stable but critical condition...."

Police said the stiletto penetrated the eye socket and touched the victim's brain.

What struck me about the short article was the matter-of-fact tone about the attack, almost as if the incident happened with no woman present. There is a lack of emotion when reporting about violence against men, which makes it seem like "no big deal." When reporting on women who are abused or hurt by a boyfriend, it is almost always more sympathetic, emotional, and more detailed. Though this seems like a small thing, the apathetic way that the media portrays female on male violence, without emphasis on the female perpetrator as a serious threat, makes the public take incidents like this less seriously.

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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tweeting a school shooting.

Update: Here is more on the male teacher who shot two administrators at Inskip Elementary.

Update II: Mark Foster, the suspect in the school shooting had also allegedly threatened to kill a previous boss. His brother also took out an order of protection against him but nothing was done. My question is, why does no one ever put two and two together in these cases? It seems that no one ever communicates when someone is violent or potentially violent. My guess is the reason is fear, probably of a lawsuit.


Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Stuart Schneiderman: Welcome to the Harem:

Meanwhile back in college girls are learning to hook up. But, as Charlotte Allen points out, they are not hooking up with just anyone. Not just any man is going to succeed at the hook-up game.

A group of ersatz alpha males seems to have garnered a disproportionate number of women, while the beta and gamma males, nice guys, guys who would make good husbands or boy friends, are left out of the game.

Naturally, they want to be in the game. They do not esteem themselves and are not esteemed by women for their good qualities, so they decide that they want to become pick-up artists.

Much of Allen's article is about how normal men, seeing women blithely go home with pick-up artists, decide that they must devalue their good qualities and emulate these ersatz alpha males.

The interesting part of all this is that a woman who engages in a casual sexual encounter with an ersatz alpha male, only to return to the comfort of the sisterhood, is acting like she is part of a harem.

Schneiderman mentions that the inexperienced "normal men" are not particularly good lovers. I don't think that's necessarily true. It seems to me that those who are nerds who have some time on their hands have more practice at sex than guys into sports, etc. and learn more how to make women happy. Wasn't that mentioned in a movie like Animal House?

Update: Oops, my mistake, commenter Larry J. points out it was "Revenge of the Nerds.

From blogger to activist

Glenn and I interview Gateway Pundit Jim Hoft about how he went from blogger to activist.

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Monday, February 08, 2010

I just read on a Politico tweet that John Murtha died. Does anyone know if this is accurate?

Update: Thanks to all the readers who quickly responded. RIP, Mr. Murtha.

“We are not going to play that game anymore.”

It seems that Wall Street is finally realizing that they have been had: "In a Message to Democrats, Wall St. Sends Cash to GOP:"

A spokesman for JPMorgan Chase declined to comment on its political action committee’s contributions or relations with the Democrats. But many Wall Street lobbyists and executives said they, too, were rethinking their giving.

“The expectation in Washington is that ‘We can kick you around, and you are still going to give us money,’ ” said a top official at a major Wall Street firm, speaking on the condition of anonymity for fear of alienating the White House. “We are not going to play that game anymore.”

Wall Street fund-raisers for the Democrats say they are feeling under attack from all sides. The president is lashing out at their “arrogance and greed.” Republican friends are saying “I told you so.” And contributors are wishing they had their money back.

It seems that buyer's remorse has set it, and all I can say is, "it's about time."


Send Carol Shea-Porter home instead

I just got a new blogad (on your right) about Carol Shea-Porter (NH-01), the Congresswoman who talked about sending men home from Congress so health care could get passed. I just joined their campaign to remove this woman from office. It's important not just to talk about men's rights and issues but to be proactive when it comes to fighting back against those who think misandry is a God-given right. You can learn more about the campaign here.


Sunday, February 07, 2010

Sarah Palin's shoes

Glenn and I went backstage last night at Sarah Palin's speech at the National Tea Party convention. While I enjoyed hearing about the issues that Governor Palin brought up, (you can watch the video of her speech here with Glenn and I giving commentary at the end), I couldn't help but be drawn to the extremely high-heeled pumps that she was wearing. All I could think was "how does she wear those? Aren't they uncomfortable? How does she keep from falling in them?" I am always amazed by women who give speeches in incredibly high heels, which many seem to do. How do they do it so gracefully? And why do they need the extremely high heels, for more presence?

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