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beerbeer

Bushnell park rape -- it didn't happen

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Sure was. Here's another article from the Courant today talking about the black eye this was for the city and the black community. Sad she had to make up a story and make the villian a black man.

Courant Rape Article

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Sure was. Here's another article from the Courant today talking about the black eye this was for the city and the black community. Sad she had to make up a story and make the villian a black man.

Courant Rape Article

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Hmm:

Get Nifong (the DA in NC who's railroading the Duke Lacrosse players) on the case. Maybe he can charge the Duke team!!

In all seriousness, I believe rape is ONE of the worst crimes done to another human. However, it should be a CRIME to falsly report saying you have been raped. I have to say to the afro-american community that I'm sorry that she did that. She should be charged.

JimS

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The woman should be charged and sued for whatever city resources were used to pursue her false claims. I'm not buying that other rape victims won't come forward if charges are brought against her. On the flip side, what about people who WON'T be afraid to make up a story to police because they know there will be no consequence?

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Most news viewers are only going to remember the initial reports and not really pay attention to the follow ups, so irreparable damage has been done. Many people are still walking around thinking Hartford is a place where people get raped in the park the mid-afternoon, thanks to her accusation. The racial aspect of her accusation is very offensive, but so is the horrible stain Hartford will now carry for a crime that didn't even happen. Not the thing a city trying to rebound needs.

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The woman should be charged and sued for whatever city resources were used to pursue her false claims. I'm not buying that other rape victims won't come forward if charges are brought against her. On the flip side, what about people who WON'T be afraid to make up a story to police because they know there will be no consequence?

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Good point. It would appear that people are free to cry wolf as long as they claim to have ever been a victim at some point in time. Ridiculous!

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I also think this woman should be held to account, but can I make another point, one about fear and stereotypes.

I am a young, white male. I know I stereotype based on race. I catch myself doing it--walking down the street at night and taking note of the race of the person walking toward me. And, more often than not, I'm more comfortable when he's white. I think this is perfectly rational in this city, where, like in so many, most of the poor--most likely to be driven to crime--are minorities. I also think it's terrible, and that we need to address the root cause of that fact.

But I also have realized something else. And this is really my point: if the black man is in a suit, I am perfectly comfortable. In fact, the stereotype vanishes. I'd be far more comfortable to pass him than a white man with his pants around his knees.

In other words, my stereotype isn't about race, it's about culture--street culture--and to me, somebody who looks like trouble, looks like trouble regardless of his race. And, concomitantly, somebody who looks like he's an upstanding businessman, looks like an upstanding businessman regardless of his race.

The lesson may be for thugs to dress in suits before they rob me ... or maybe it is for upstanding black men to distance themselves from the images that people fear--for them to defy the stereotype in their very appearance.

Thoughts?

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I also think this woman should be held to account, but can I make another point, one about fear and stereotypes.

I am a young, white male. I know I stereotype based on race. I catch myself doing it--walking down the street at night and taking note of the race of the person walking toward me. And, more often than not, I'm more comfortable when he's white. I think this is perfectly rational in this city, where, like in so many, most of the poor--most likely to be driven to crime--are minorities. I also think it's terrible, and that we need to address the root cause of that fact.

But I also have realized something else. And this is really my point: if the black man is in a suit, I am perfectly comfortable. In fact, the stereotype vanishes. I'd be far more comfortable to pass him than a white man with his pants around his knees.

In other words, my stereotype isn't about race, it's about culture--street culture--and to me, somebody who looks like trouble, looks like trouble regardless of his race. And, concomitantly, somebody who looks like he's an upstanding businessman, looks like an upstanding businessman regardless of his race.

The lesson may be for thugs to dress in suits before they rob me ... or maybe it is for upstanding black men to distance themselves from the images that people fear--for them to defy the stereotype in their very appearance.

Thoughts?

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I saw it on Channel 3 last week, a couple of days before New Year's Eve. I guess the woman had been doubted from the very beginning. It must have been in the Courant last week also.

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Very interesting. I share some of the same thoughts. But I don't think it is up to black men to, "distance themselves from the images that people fear--for them to defy the stereotype in their very appearance" as you say. In so doing, you are asking them to change the way they dress because it makes you feel uncomfortable. That is nonsense. People are able to wear whatever they want and should not have to change because of such stereotypes. The solution lies much, much deeper.

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Why is that nonsense? I think it's a good solution. Is it really worth wearing that clothing if you're going to scare people into stereotyping you?

Business dress is business dress. I think we need to teach young adults how to conduct themselves in business settings, including their appearance. Like it or not, western business culture sets the standard, and if somebody wants to succeed in that environment, it's best that he or she know how to adapt.

Frankly, my impression of the street culture I'm talking about, is that it is in and of itself based on perpetuating stereotypes. My friends in the white-as-snow suburbs didn't go around dressing like Tupac b/c they thought it expressed their individuality; they thought it made them look tough--they thought it made them look like thugs. While nobody believed them, plenty of people are ready to believe the kids they see on Hartford's streets.

Why does somebody want to look like a thug?! You can't have your cake and eat it too; you can't say, I'm going to dress like a thug, so people will be scared of me and then say, don't be scared of me! Moreover, you can't then peg it to race and say, you're scared of me because of my race... no, I'm scared of you because you look like a thug! You could hide an army in that coat, let alone a handgun. I'm crossing the street now, thank you very much.

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True, but the styles were not created by thugs. Merely embrased by them. I'm not gonna let the thugs steal my fashion and keep it for themselves. Also, this is how you are accepted where I'm from. Who wants to dress in a way that will get you teased and not allow you be percieved as attractive to the women you want? We will not be told how to dress especially since we don't like the way others dress to begin with.

I do agree though that business norms must be taught and stressed especially in communities where they are less exposed that lifestyle. The kids do need to see and understand that there are appropriate ways to dress and carry yourself that can vary greatly depending on the actual setting.

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I think that's fair. I agree, who am I to say whether a style shouldn't be cool within a community. But, accepting your point that it wasn't created by thugs, do you think most people who dress that way view it as you do, or do they buy into the thug lifestyle? I guess what I'm saying is that I think thugs may have already hijacked the fashion. It's asking a lot for these kids to step back and view it the way you are.

Juan Williams wrote an interesting book called "Enough," which is based mainly on the speech Bill Cosby made at a gala to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education ... where he in large part condemned inner city fashion for the same reason.

Anyway, if the compromise is teaching these kids to "see and understand that there are appropriate ways to dress and carry yourself that can vary greatly depending on the actual setting," then I'm happy. That would be a great first step.

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To be fair Bill Cosby and Juan Williams are old. That's like letting your Grandpa get you dressed. Not gonna happen! :D

In all seriousness though, dressing like a thug is also different from dressing in young black urban fashion. Sometimes I do feel that people on the outside looking in could do a better job distinguishing between the two if they found it important enough to do so.

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I'm not sure I know the difference between dressing like a thug and young black urban fashion. I mean, I guess I clearly don't, otherwise we wouldn't be having this conversation! Is it something you can explain, or is there a good example (like a celeb) I should look at? I'll never know if I don't ask--and I do think it's an important distinction to be able to make. Maybe I'll cross the street less!!

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It would be harder to explain than point out. I think what you need to keep in mind is that most of us are not thugs. I can't really say I would wear this or a thug would wear that. However I think I can tell alot about a person's attitude and mindset by simply observing how they carry themselves. It's hard to say though, I mean I don't want to say trust everyone, because you certainly can't. However, I would also encourage you not to judge a book by it's cover. Be social when about town. You will be very surprised to see how many "tough" looking people in Hartford are the nicest people you'll ever meet.

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No, I know exactly what you're saying, and after 4 years here, I've experienced those "tough" nice people. Totally -- the kids at HPHS incluced. And, I've walked to Scott's (the Albany one) a few times (though I have to admit, I feel totally out of place, and get some looks, but the beef patties are worth it.)

I guess I'm just saying that when it comes to stereotypes, I think they have a lot more to do with dress than with the actual color of the person's skin. I appreciate that the two are very related, but I give the example of business suits, b/c business people of all walks, all races, etc., basically wear the same thing, and that helps break those stereotypes down.

Anyway, in the end, we're on the same page. I don't the thugs to bring down an entire community, and I want Hartford, and its residents, to thrive. I want HPHS to kick Xavier's a** at debate. Etc. Etc. Etc.

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Hmm:

Get Nifong (the DA in NC who's railroading the Duke Lacrosse players) on the case. Maybe he can charge the Duke team!!

In all seriousness, I believe rape is ONE of the worst crimes done to another human. However, it should be a CRIME to falsly report saying you have been raped. I have to say to the afro-american community that I'm sorry that she did that. She should be charged.

JimS

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It's not a really big deal, but it just gets old that whenever someone invents a fictional crime the perpetrator is usually black. Hartford is approx. 40% black 40% hispanic and 20% white. We can't afford to have negative stereotypes re-inforced by anyone white or black. We can't afford to have half of the city viewed with suspicion, fear, and scrutiny over false reports.

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Why is that nonsense? I think it's a good solution. Is it really worth wearing that clothing if you're going to scare people into stereotyping you?

Business dress is business dress. I think we need to teach young adults how to conduct themselves in business settings, including their appearance. Like it or not, western business culture sets the standard, and if somebody wants to succeed in that environment, it's best that he or she know how to adapt.

Frankly, my impression of the street culture I'm talking about, is that it is in and of itself based on perpetuating stereotypes. My friends in the white-as-snow suburbs didn't go around dressing like Tupac b/c they thought it expressed their individuality; they thought it made them look tough--they thought it made them look like thugs. While nobody believed them, plenty of people are ready to believe the kids they see on Hartford's streets.

Why does somebody want to look like a thug?! You can't have your cake and eat it too; you can't say, I'm going to dress like a thug, so people will be scared of me and then say, don't be scared of me! Moreover, you can't then peg it to race and say, you're scared of me because of my race... no, I'm scared of you because you look like a thug! You could hide an army in that coat, let alone a handgun. I'm crossing the street now, thank you very much.

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People should be able to dress in the manner they desire. Most young Blacks and a significant amount of Latinos wear Urban fashions, is it your position that all these people are thugs? A small minority should be able to tarnish a respectable majority? Do you also believe Italians shouldn't wear suits because of violent Brioni clad mobsters? Should Arab Muslims stop wearing those scarfs simply to prove they aren't terrorist. People like to stereotype and attribute negative attributes to unassimilated Blacks in general and especially Urban segment. The idea that Young Black or Urban Americans should have to modify there dress so as not inspire irrational fear and racism is hypocritical and very wrong. The only basis should be. is this person dress appropriately.

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Sure, why set a standard. Who cares. Dress how you want, it doesn't matter. In fact I think I'll show up to work in my around the house leisure clothes. Hey I can make a great argument that I'll be more productive that way.

How you present yourself DOES matter. No one is going to take you seriously if you show up for a job interview without a proper handle on the English language, 14lbs of gold on your teeth, clothes 14 times the size they should be, with a doo rag on your head while you slump in your chair looking hard. Toss in a lip smack now and again and you got a real shot at getting the job.

Stereotypes do not grow out of the woodwork, they come from some form of truth. People adhere and embrace certain stereotypes to generally FIT into a certain stereo type. This is very basic.

As Whaler0718 said, why would you want to associate yourself with a certain "stereotype" if you don't live that kind of life?

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That's not what he's saying at all. If you notice he says as long as you are dressed appropriately, indicating there is a time and place for certain attire. There is absolutely no need though for anyone to feel that casual clothing needs to be set to some standard. I don't wear certain styles because they look stupid to me, and even my business and business casual attire is a reflection of myself as I'm sure yours are. All I'm saying is don't expect me to put on a tight pair of jeans and some dirty old sneakers when I'm just about town running errands. That's not my style nor most in the young urban demographic. I do agree that some people dress to intimidate. It is also not a black or urban thing. Just look at many biker looking or blue collar white people in CT's more redneckish areas and they look pretty damn rough if you ask me. If they have a right to walk around looking tough, then everyone does and most of what is considered urban fashion has nothing to do with a thug image anyway.

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