sparr: (cellular automata)
Previous post: http://sparr0.livejournal.com/77436.html

Last month I heard the following rumor about myself from a bay area acquaintance:

"[a friend who runs a camp at a large event] let me know that someone had complained to him that you were insufficiently respectful of sexual consent boundaries [and that's why you aren't welcome to join his camp]"

Read more... )

I still don't have enough information to confidently say what I think has happened. I continue to seek information on all of these fronts. This line of inquiry has spawned numerous side quests, all of which I hope to follow to completion in order to make amends, better myself, help others better themselves, or help others make informed decisions about me. Posting this, and following those leads, means I can never again know if an accusation is new or based on the same thing as this round of rumors or even just based on someone having read this post. I can live with that, if it means doing something good with this information.

(cross posted to Facebook, Livejournal, Google+, Fetlife)
sparr: (cellular automata)
I've just heard third-hand, through a grapevine comprised of at-least-mostly bay area people, that "someone has complained ... that you were insufficiently respectful of sexual consent boundaries", and this is resulting in me not being welcome in some spaces at an event.

I don't know who is accusing me. I don't know what they are saying I did. I don't know when or where it happened.

I don't know how much of a game of telephone is going on here. Is this another case of someone labeling me "rapist" based solely on conversations about consent, as happened a couple of times in Boston, and then someone else taking that label at face value?

I've been sexually intimate with four people on the west coast since moving here. Two of them I am still dating and fucking (intermittently), and both seem quite happy to seek out my company. The third asked for a demo of a fucking machine at Dark Odyssey Surrender, and seemed to enjoy the experience and leave happy; I don't know her name and have no idea how to contact her to apologize. The fourth seemed the most likely source of the rumor, since she ended our sexual relationship, so I sent her an attempt at an apology. She coaxed the story from me and explicitly denied it.

If this accusation is following me from my road trip, or Chicago, or Boston, or Atlanta, then I am at a complete loss for how to proceed.

Help?
sparr: (cellular automata)
Trigger warning

I recently included a clarifying footnote in a post: "the belief that rape is worse than murder, which is not universal". I had two people contact me to inquire about this. They were otherwise reasonable and informed people who did not think they had ever encountered any belief contrary to this one. I write a lot about value systems, priorities, decision making, and outcomes. I'm surprised that I've overlooked such a good example, amid the few others that come up with regularity. In this writing I'll try to elaborate on why this matters.

Rape, torture, murder. Even the most rationally ethical people can have different opinions about the ranking of these three evils, based on how they value others' lives, agency, happiness, etc. In the general case, considering each of these as a whole, they can go in any order. In more specific cases, it gets even trickier. Some people believe it's worse to murder an infant than someone on their death bed. Some people believe it's worse to rape a virgin than a whore. Some people believe it's worse to torture for fun than for information required to do good. And many (most?) people who have one of those beliefs also allow them to overlap. Torture can be generally worse than murder, while murder of an infant is worse than torture of an octogenarian for good reasons. Making it even more tricky, that good reason could be saving a life. Skipping rape, both torture and murder can often lead to saving one or more lives, and even a completely rationally ethical person can decide that it's preferable to intentionally murder one person than to let two others die through lack of action (look up the Trolley Problem).

Now, to throw some irrational, but very prevalent, people into the mix, consider devout religious adherents. The holy books of many religions give strict rankings of some types of evil, often including some of these three. Consider a Catholic, to whom suicide may be the only unforgivable sin, followed by the mortal sins that include idolatry, adultery, murder, slander, etc. Depending on their precise sub-sub-sub-sect, rape and torture might not appear on that list at all, not having been entirely proscribed by their deity. I know less about various other religions, but I do know that other Abrahamic religions have similar aspects, if not such a rigid ranking, and some even include rules mandating these actions in certain situations.

All of these factors combine to form an environment where it is often not fruitful to have a conversation with someone about avoiding or preventing evil, or doing good, without first getting at least some hint of whether their value system and priorities align with yours, and the ways in which they conflict. If you disagree on whether murder is worse than rape, or even whether slander is worse than rape, you'll be spinning your wheels trying to reconcile conclusions that stem from those base premises.
sparr: (cellular automata)
Trigger warning: rape

There are a lot of legal terms and theories related to the concepts I am going to cover here. I know a few of them, but don't know most of them, and would probably not correctly use the ones I do know, so I'm going to try to stick to plain English with some occasional explanation of my meaning.

It has come up recently in conversations about dealing with sexual assault in my local communities that some people want to strongly prioritize the impact on the victim when deciding how to deal with a person or incident. I am strongly opposed to this plan, and want to thoroughly explain why. I'm going to apologize in advance for sticking to male-aggressor rape; it's arguably more common and keeps my use of pronouns simpler. Everything I say can, of course, be applied in reverse. And I am not going to cover malicious rape here. It happens. A lot. It deserves a lot of discussion and consideration. It doesn't get as much as it deserves. That doesn't mean it's unacceptable for us to discuss OTHER things, and THIS post mostly isn't about that.

First and foremost, I will readily admit that preventing future rapes is higher on my list of priorities than avoiding mental distress for past victims. If given the choice between the two, I will choose the former. I will encourage rape victims to testify against their rapists even when I know it will cause them mental distress, because I have strong interest in that rapist being convicted and removed from society. I am aware that there are people, particularly rape victims and/or trained/professional rape counselors, who do not agree with this prioritization. If you disagree with that choice then we have fundamentally different value systems, and you should not bother replying to any of the things I say below because they are all predicated on those values.

Read more... )

Now, we come to the goal of preventing future rapes, and my earlier mention of priorities. Our community is going to take some steps to try to accomplish this goal. Those steps will be more effective the less random their basis. If we choose to ostracize everyone whose victim felt raped, we will appease the victims more often, but we will be doing away with some people who are not dangers to our community, and not addressing problems with people who are a danger but who are luckier or better at picking their victims. If, instead, we choose to ostracize people whose ACTIONS are unacceptable, and/or whose intent becomes apparent and unacceptable, then we will have a community in which those actions take place less often, and those intents are held less often. I choose the latter. To the consternation of many, this will require us to actually discuss and decide what those unacceptable actions are, to talk about the unacceptable behavior of others, and to enforce our rules consistently. I am willing to do this. Are you?
sparr: (cellular automata)
I am not a rapist. I do not believe that I have ever engaged in sexual activity with someone without exercising an above-average degree of caution regarding any implicit consent and I regularly seek explicit and comprehensive consent during negotiation of potential intimate encounters. I have never engaged in sexual or intimate activity with someone who I thought was not consenting. I am aware that our culture has some really fucked up things going on regarding gender roles, rape, sex, and all sorts of other stuff. Unfortunately, trying to bring these topics up will often result in being shouted down by people who think this discussion should not be had as long as intentional rape is still happening. I am not trying to argue with or devalue any discussion of people trying to prevent intentional rape. I am, however, saying that for people who want to not be rapists, there remain just as many concerns in the opposite direction as for people who want not to be raped. As much sympathy as I feel for rape victims, and as much good as conversations about preventing people from intentionally raping other people, those conversations generally do not provide useful information to people who already want to not rape other people. That is who this post is talking about.

I am, however, a creep. A creeper. A creepy guy. I creep some people out. This is unavoidable. The mere act of being out in public, being the not-ideally-attractive person that I am, makes a few people uncomfortable. When my beard is acting out, more so. Looking at women is creepy. Starting conversations with strangers is creepy. Asking personal questions is creepy. Asking intimate questions is creepy. Voicing romantic or intimate intentions is creepy. Asking to touch people is creepy. Touching people without asking is creepy. Not being creepy isn't an option. HOW creepy to be in any given situation is a decision that I have to make, and those decisions work in the exact same fashion as "how rapey is this action" decisions. Being creepy can't be about reaction in the same way that rape can't be about regret. An action is creepy or rapey when it is committed, even if the result is positive. It is with that mindset that I have to decide whether or not to take a particular action, because over a long enough timeline, if I keep doing the same things (asking people out, complimenting people, hugging people, having sex with people, etc), every possible reaction will take place as often as its likelihood dictates.

Read more... )

So, to summarize, you are Schrodinger's Rape Victim. Every interaction that I ever have with you has the potential to cause you undue distress, to offend you, to insult you, to arouse you, or to cause you irreparable mental harm. The odds of all of those increase as the nature of our interactions tend toward intimacy. The odds of them decrease as we exercise thorough and honest communication. But they are never 100%, and they are never 0%. I have to decide where my risk threshold is, but I won't ever have enough information to make that decision completely effectively. So I write this, and I talk to all of you, and I try to get feedback that will allow me to set that threshold in a place that results in a greater net benefit according to some value system more effective than my own. I hope you will think on this, and in doing so help yourself and help me work towards a culture that is at least a little less rapey.
sparr: (Default)
I've got some concerns regarding sexual consent and about being a good friend, of the sort with or without benefits. As usual, this post is where I am going to put a lot more thought into one small part of typical life than most people would, but asking for and receiving feedback on these issues is how I keep myself on track, at least somewhat.

Freely given sex is a good thing.
Rape is a bad thing, and consider this a trigger warning for the next section of this post.

Read more... )
sparr: (Default)
Christopher Dale Moore, aka Techno, our favorite local serial date rapist and all around creep, is in jail in Dekalb County right now on a felony child molestation charge. To the of-age girls that I know are pursuing charges against him, kudos. To the underage girl who had the courage to finally put him behind bars, you go girl.
http://www.dekalbmugs.com/?city=All&date=2011-02-11&id=1274965
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Not-being-around-Techno/156980784339660
sparr: (Default)
TRIGGER WARNING: This note involves rape and drugs.

UPDATE #3:

I have removed his address from this post at the request of the people who still live at that address. He is currently being held, with no bond listed, for a technical parole violation regarding his change of address. If we do nothing, he will be back out very soon. Once again, if you have firsthand knowledge of any of his illegal doings (no rumors, please), please contact Shawn Bugbee (tagged on this note) or the police directly.
His current inmate status can be seen here, if the link stays good:
http://inmates.fultonsheriff.net/PublicBookings_view.asp?editid1=1031965

UPDATE #2:

Techno is in jail. He is currently being held by the Fulton County Sherriff's Department, the hold mandated by the Parole dept. Further information as it arrives. Do not consider this issue closed, anyone with something to report should still contact the parole dept or the police and explain your situation.

UPDATE: Parole Information )

It's time to air out some dirty laundry. Rumors are fine and dandy for things that don't matter, but this has long since passed that point. I'm sure some of you have heard various things from various people about my involvement with this issue, so this is to set the record straight.

Christopher Dale Moore, better known as Techno to most of our mutual acquaintances, is a menace. He is a sexual predator. He is a liar, and not even a good one. My stated goal at this point is to not encounter him in social settings any more, and to prevent my acquaintances, especially of the naive female variety, from having to deal with him, and I don't plan to adjust my own habits to accomplish that. I have been neutral on this subject for too long, and too many people have become involved for me to continue to let it slide. If I still have your ear, please read on...

ETA: Shawn Bugbee, known to many of us as the legal counsel for CoLab in their current disagreements with the APD, is collecting information from any victims of this man. If you have first-hand information (no rumors!), please pass it on to him (he can be found on Facebook by name or at his website bugbeelaw.info.

Read more... )
Some names changed to protect the innocent.
Crossposted to Facebook and Livejournal.

TRIGGER WARNING: This note involves rape and drugs.

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