past time guys took a stand

Fri Apr-8th-2016 // Filed under: Games,I Rant!,Those Pesky Roles

I’ve been meaning to write this post for a good while, but I’ve had trouble articulating my thoughts properly. It’s not that it’s a complicated thing, really — it’s just that I want to be clear about it, if only because this is one of those topics where some people will be looking very, very hard for opportunities to misunderstand, which is the kind of nonsense I have no time or patience for.

So, in the interest of clarity, let’s start with this: I’m really talking to guys here. Hear me, fellow dudes. This concerns you, and by extension, many of the people I’m going to presume you love — but they aren’t the target audience here, boys. It’s you. It’s us guys.

(more…)



not even kidding about any of this

Sun Dec-15th-2013 // Filed under: Games,I Rant!

So… another week, another story of a woman in gaming being ridiculed, or belittled, or threatened with rape, or just piled on by a horde of people who really aren’t very good people at all. It happens, and it happens a lot.

It makes me pretty angry. I am, of course, speaking only for myself, not my employer. (I’m assuming that most people I work with would agree with me, even if they might elect to be a little less crude about it. I say this because the people I work with aren’t hateful jerks. But I can’t speak for them, either.)

I have two things I’m going to talk about. The first one is the problem and how I think we should start dealing with it, and the second one is how I feel about it personally.

It’s a pretty long post, so settle in. I’m getting a lot off my chest here.

(more…)



jospa jätetään nää ammattilaisille

Wed Sep-19th-2012 // Filed under: I Rant!,Täällä Pohjantähden alla

Päivitys: Allaoleva perustuu Nelosen toimittajan Davidille ja Angelalle antamaan tietoon, että molemmissa mainituissa tapauksissa toimijana oli sama yritys. Nyttemmin minulle on kerrottu, että kyseessä ei ehkä kuitenkaan ole sama toimija. En ole varma asiaintilasta, mutta lukijan on hyvä tietää, että olen saattanut erehtyä kyseisessä asiassa. Se ei kuitenkaan muuta sitä, että tässä uudemmassa tapauksessa henkilövahingot olivat joka tapauksessa hyvin lähellä.

Update: The text below is based on the information that this was the same company in both incidents mentioned below, as told to David and Angela by the reporter from Nelonen. I have been informed that this might not be the case. I don’t know that for sure yet, but you should know that I may be mistaken about that detail. That does not, however, in any way alter the fact that in this latter case, they almost got people killed.

Avoin kirje Rakennusliike Lehdolle

Tiistaina 18. syyskuuta onnistuitte melkein tappamaan työtoverini David Rhodesin perheen. Kyse ei ole liioittelusta; räjäytystyömaalla kämmellettiin niin, että kivet tulivat ikkunoiden läpi sisään asuntoon, jossa Davidin vaimo Angela ja alle vuoden ikäinen poika olivat. Kyse oli hädin tuskin metristä. (Angelan kertomus tapahtuneesta näkyy tässä Nelosen haastattelussa.)

Tämä on pikauusinta kauppakeskus Ison Omenan vieressä heinäkuussa tapahtuneesta räjäytyksestä, jossa loukkaantui seitsemän ihmistä. Myös kyseisen räjäytystyön hoiti teidän yrityksenne.

Teissä on jotain perustavanlaatuista vikaa.

David kirjoitti aiheesta oman englanninkielisen vastineensa, joka on erityisesti olosuhteet huomioon ottaen erittäin kohtelias, harkittu ja rauhallinen.

Itse en kykene moiseen, vaan sanon suoraan, että toimintanne täyttää minut inholla. Se saa minut voimaan pahoin. Se ihminen, joka teillä vastaa näistä toimenpiteistä on vastuuton hölmö, eikä hänen pitäisi enää koskaan koskea räjähteisiin. (Jos kyseessä on eri henkilö kuin aiemmassa tapauksessa, haluaisin kovasti kuulla rekryprosessistanne tarkemmin, koska silloin on syytä epäillä, että olemme löytäneet taas uuden osa-alueen, jossa ette ole kovin hyvä.)

On käsittämätöntä, että sama yritys kykenee kämmäämään tällaisen asian kahdesti näin lyhyen ajan sisällä. En kykene edes arvaamaan, minkälainen vaarallinen sekoitus epäpätevyyttä, tietämättömyyttä ja piittaamattomuutta tarvitaan, että sama yritys mokaa tällaisen asian kahdesti.

Teidän ei pitäisi tehdä mitään räjähteillä. Teitä ei pitäisi päästää edes poksahtavien ilmapallojen lähelle. Ymmärrän, että tämä saattaa tuntua epäreilulta, etenkin kun tämä on vain pieni osa siitä kaikesta, mitä yrityksenne tekee. Tiedän, että palveluksessanne on luultavasti paljon ahkeria ja vastuuntuntoisiakin työntekijöitä — ihmisiä, jotka eivät ole perskätisiä huithapeleita. Mutta mitä sitten? Siitä huolimatta synkkä tosiasia on, että Rakennusliike Lehto on muutaman kuukauden sisällä onnistunut saattamaan ihmisiä hengenvaaraan ainakin kahdesti, ja tässä vaiheessa minulla ei riitä luottamusta siihen, että teidän pitäisi antaa koskea mihinkään ovenkahvaa monimutkaisempaan vehkeeseen, ja siihenkin olisi hyvä saada jonkun aikuisen valvontaa.

En tiedä, kenelle teidän pitää antaa potkut, mutta toivon, että se tapahtuu pian. En tiedä, kuka on vastuussa niistä luvista, joiden avulla te voitte tehdä töitä, mutta toivon, että ne otetaan pois, kunnes asiaankuuluvat potkut on annettu. En tiedä, pitäisikö jonkun mennä tämän seurauksena vankilaan, mutta tiedän, että sitä on syytä harkita.

Te olette kädettäjiä. Olen tosissani. Te melkein tapoitte jonkun, taas.

Mikko Rautalahti

Because David doesn’t speak Finnish, and because he’s a co-worker and a friend, and this concerns him in the most intimate ways imaginable, here’s the same thing in English.

An Open Letter to Rakennusliike Lehto

On Tuesday, September 18, you almost managed to kill the family of my co-worker David Rhodes. I’m not exaggerating: your messed up your demolition work, and as a result, debris shattered windows and peppered the apartment, while David’s wife Angela and 10-month old son were inside. The rocks barely missed them. (For Angela’s account of what happened, see this interview on Nelonen.fi.)

This is a repeat of an almost identical demolition incident at the Iso Omena mall in July, in which seven people were injured. Your company was also responsible for that.

There is something fundamentally wrong with you.

David has written his own letter to you, which, especially considering the circumstances, is extremely polite, thoughtful and calm.

I’m not really capable of that kind of calmness myself. Instead, I’ll come right out and say that your actions make me appalled. They make me sick. The person in charge of these operations at your company is an irresponsible fool, and he should never touch another explosive in his life. (Should that turn out to be a different person than in the previous incident, I would love to hear more about your recruitment process, because I think that might be yet another thing you are not very good at.)

It’s inconceivable that the same company manages to screw up something as fundamental as this twice within such a short period of time. I cannot fathom what kind of a volatile combination of incompetence, ignorance, and indifference is required for your company to make such a basic mistake twice.

You should not do anything with explosives. Even a popping a balloon is more responsibility than you can handle. I realize that this may seem unfair, given that these incidents are just a small part of everything your company does; there are undoubtedly hard-working and responsible people at your company — people who are not incompetent mouthbreathers. But so what? Regardless, the fact is that in a few short months, Rakennusliike Lehto has managed to endanger people at least twice, and at this point, I have no confidence that you should be allowed to touch anything more complicated than a door handle, and even that should be with adult supervision.

I don’t know who you have to fire, but I hope you do it soon. I don’t know who’s responsible for the permits you require in order to conduct your business, but I hope they are revoked until you have fired whoever it is that you have to fire. I don’t know if anybody should go to prison as a result of this, but I do know that it’s something worth looking into.

You are doing it wrong. Seriously, you really are, and you almost killed somebody. Again.

Mikko Rautalahti



somebody’s wrong on the internet

Wed Oct-26th-2011 // Filed under: I Rant!

So, there’s this stupid picture meme that’s been floating around for a pretty good while now. It pops up fairly frequently, and it pisses me off. You may have seen it:


It’s not that I like “Friday,” obviously, it’s a pretty awful song, but the willful stupidity and intellectual dishonesty of this is annoying as hell. Just… look, pretending that the quoted examples are somehow representative of anything so you can make a snooty and confused statement about the current state of music overall is just… Gngh.

NERD RAGE ACTIVATED.

So, I made this:


Cherry-picking to make a frivolous statement? Easy!

Fuck you, some guy from the internet, two can play at that game.



his uppance definitely came

Fri Mar-18th-2011 // Filed under: I Rant!

You may have seen the video of Casey Heynes getting tired of being bullied slamming his tormentor to the ground.

It can be argued that this kind of a response doesn’t solve the problem, and that’s probably true. Even so, my reaction to that video was an unequivocal “FUCK YEAH”. I feel nothing but disdain for the malevolent little asshole, and when it turned out that he was actually capable of walking away, albeit with a limp, I found myself disappointed.

I can’t justify that reaction. But I can explain it: this is not based merely on the thrill of an annoying person getting his comeuppance, or on some kind of a vague “root for the underdog” impulse. It goes deeper than that, and I don’t think I’m alone in feeling as I do.

I don’t like bullies, and I particularly don’t like them in surroundings where the person being bullied is in no position to simply walk away. An abusive asshole on the internet? Ignoring them is relatively easy. An abusive asshole in your school, workplace or home? You’re stuck with them, and not just physically.

Bullies are poison. The effect they have on people is not linear or localized. The effect is exponential, and it reaches far and wide. When I was a kid, I was bullied — not a lot, all things considered, but enough to make me understand how bad it could get — and to my shame, I bullied some others — again, not a lot, but enough to know how easy it was, and how big a part of it was the knowledge I could get away with it.

There was one instance where I said something to somebody — it was hurtful, and it was also stupid, all the more so because I didn’t mean it, or really even think about it, I just thought I was being funny. There was an adult present, and he shut me the fuck down right there. It was humiliating — not so much because I got told off harshly, but because I knew he was right and I was being the kind of a person I despised. I wasn’t sure how I ended up being that guy, but there I was. It may have been the earliest instance in my life when I was forced to acknowledge that my ideals and self-image did not automatically conform to the reality of my existence — that I had to actively work to keep those things in sync. A valuable lesson, to be sure, one that we should all learn at an early age. I wish I could say that it stuck right there and then. But at the time, I was very young, and it’d take me much more growing up before I could behave myself consistently.

So… yeah, I wanted the bully’s leg to get busted. It’s undoubtedly better for Casey that it didn’t, but the little dick had it coming. I’m not going to pretend that it would have been justice, because that wouldn’t be true. On the other hand, getting slammed to the concrete by the person he was bullying? I’m not entirely convinced I know what real justice is, but that kind of looked like it to me.

There’s this persistent idea that violence is always wrong, and I do kind of agree with that — in principle. I do. But hand in hand with that one goes often that whole “turn the other cheek” concept of passive resistance. That’s great for making yourself look awfully noble and may very well work when the other party can be shamed into stopping. It’s a wonderful tool for taking a public stand when you’re being abused by people who would rather have nobody pay attention to their misdeeds, forcing them to take notice — putting them in a position where they have to either let you do what you want, or be seen behaving in an unacceptable manner. In short, passive resistance tends to work great when you’re against systemic oppression and intimidation.

But it’s utterly useless when they really want to hurt you. For example, if you’re gay and run into a bunch of assholes who want to beat you up and drag you behind their truck, you can turn the other cheek all you want, but these are not people who’re going to see your inherent nobility and stop smacking you in the face with the tire iron just because you don’t defend yourself. Passive resistance isn’t going to stop spousal abuse. It does nothing to deter an enemy sniper. As a tool against muggers, it’s slightly less effective than an epileptic fit. And when some beady-eyed little shit decides to start punching you in the face in the schoolyard, standing there without doing anything isn’t going to keep the next blow from landing.

I don’t really know anything about Casey Heynes, other than what we see in the video, but I’ll say this for him: when the pissant tormenting him was down, he could’ve kicked him in the face. He could have stepped on his throat. He could’ve done some damage. But he stepped away. A bigger boy shows up and confronts Casey — yeah, now you’re stepping in, you unbelievable asshole — but even before that, he was already putting distance between himself and the other kid.

I kind of doubt the other party involved in the dispute would’ve had that sort of restraint or class. They’re not traits generally associated with the type.



open letter to a vice president

Sat Oct-30th-2010 // Filed under: I Rant!

Dear Mr. H,

I got some e-mail from you today! Oh, I know it was a mass mailing sent out to all of your translation vendors, but rest assured I felt a very real personal connection. It immediately prompted a question, but I’ll get to that a little later. Let me give a little bit of context first.

The subject line alone (“Subject: Urgent and Important — Your Immediate Support Required”) was quite impressive. Perhaps you were in trouble? Perhaps you needed a couch to crash on. Or maybe you needed help moving! I’m always eager to support my friends.

Forgive me. I may be presumptuous; after all, we aren’t close. You’re the Vice President of something or the other at your company, and I’m some guy who did a bunch of translation for your Finnish office. It’s been, oh, probably about three years since the last time I did a job for you guys, but I’m still on your vendor list. Remember? Your company still sends me regular e-mails about your awesome new translation tool that you now apparently require all vendors to use. You know, the one they have to subscribe to! That was a nice one. I definitely think it’s very reasonable that the people you contract to do a job have to pay you for the privilege.

Anyway, I would send this to you directly, but it turns out that for some reason, you neglected to include your e-mail address in your sensitive and very touching e-mail. It’s almost as if you didn’t want to hear any feedback! Believe me, I thought long and hard about whether I should say this in public like this, and in the end I chickened out and removed your name and the name of your company. I don’t really care about burning bridges, but even so, I don’t want a rep as a guy who makes a public spectacle out of every little grievance. And yet this felt like something that I should say.

So, in that spirit, let me quote some of your words, just in case you forgot what you were saying. I’ll skip the boring parts — the dollar is weak, the economy is in a bad shape, blah blah — and cut to the chase:

In today’s uncertain economic environment customers expect all of us to deliver “more for less”. To remain competitive, we are all demanding more from ourselves to meet these challenges.

Against the backdrop of this negative economic context, effective November 1, 2010 through January 1, 2011 we require all our partners to provide a 5% discount on all [company] projects. This discount is independent of any other agreements we may have in place with you.

Oh! Okay. Just between the two of us, I think that if I was still sending invoices your way, I might find this just a little teeny tiny bit horribly offensive and unreasonable. Not just because of the 5%, although that would certainly be a part of it, but because I have a sneaking suspicion that if I were to inform you that I require a 5% bonus on all projects, you would not be inclined to agree, no matter how well I explained how the global economic realities affect me.

You would most likely point out that we have an agreed-on rate for translation projects, and that I cannot just unilaterally increase it. At the very least, we would have to sit down and agree on a new rate, because, you know, that’s how things are done. I mean, I can’t go to my current employer and just inform them about my new salary. I’m probably going to have to ask for a raise. (If things work differently at your company, are you hiring? Because I think I could make that work for me — but then, that might explain why you feel like saving some money. Just saying.)

In any case, I fully understand that you really want to improve your profits for the last quarter of 2010, but demanding that your “translation vendors” — and just to be clear here, to a great extent, this euphemism actually refers to individual freelance translators — suddenly provide more for less seems kind of unreasonable. Call me crazy, but I don’t think you’re going to make it up to them later on. You’re not going to provide any job security, or bonuses, or stock options, or anything of the sort. After all, these are freelancers, right? The best they can hope for is that you do not stop providing them with new translation work. It’s kind of hard to not get the feeling that instead of a request for support, this is just plain old extortion. I mean, either people agree to this, or you just drop them. It’s not like you’re going to be providing them with any kind of severance pay, right?

My dear Mr. H, it seems to me that what you’re really saying here is, “I am altering the deal. Pray I don’t alter it any further.”

Are… are you Darth Vader?



every word she says hurts us

Fri Aug-7th-2009 // Filed under: I Rant!

I haven’t been writing much recently, mostly because I’ve been writing a lot for another purpose — it’s keeping me pretty busy, which is obviously nice.

However, this morning, just now, a friend of mine pointed me at a YouTube clip of Richard Dawkins talking to Wendy Wright. And goddammit, if that didn’t make me want to vent.

If you’re even vaguely aware of who Dawkins is, you can probably figure out how that goes: Wright implies that evolution is just a bunch of lies and that there’s no evidence for it and that the scientific community is ignoring perfectly valid research that proves that there’s no evolution and yadda yadda yadda, and Dawkins points out that she is, in fact, full of shit by using more or less rational arguments, which the other person then ignores or, quite possibly, doesn’t even entirely understand. There’s nothing new here.

And yet that thing woke me right up — that infuriatingly obtuse attitude, the willful ignorance, the disingenuous motivation, even that tone of voice. It’s like mainlining pure aggression. What can I say? I listen to her speak, and I fantasize a heart attack, a bear attack, a terrorist attack — shit, just about any kind of a an attack. That snaps me awake better than any kind of a caffeine infusion.

She insists that there’s no evidence for evolution, but of course that’s not true: there’s plenty of evidence, she just dismisses it. She brings up ancient examples of fraud or error as proof that there’s no evolution, and ignores the fact that no one actually uses those as evidence for evolution. For her, if someone claims that cars run on gasoline and gasoline comes from cows, proving that gasoline does not, in fact, come from cows also counters all evidence for cars running on gasoline. She’s essentially counting the hits and ignoring the misses: a stupid mistake by some Victorian guy is a huge blow against evolution, but DNA evidence is so insignificant it isn’t even worth talking about. There’s no real way to argue with her, because that implies a rational discussion where actual facts come into play. That’s not how she operates.

As I said, there’s nothing new here, and that’s what makes all this so frustrating: if she was just a random nutjob, it wouldn’t matter. But she’s not alone, she’s part of an organized effort to keep us ignorant, which exists for a multitude of reasons that are too depressing to go into right now.

My point is: this woman, right here, is what keeps us small and stupid and useless.



those utterly punchable people

Mon Mar-24th-2008 // Filed under: I Rant!

A little while ago, I wrote about people who are dicks. That’s a valid source of frustration, as far as it goes, but some people really take their dickery to an extreme that just makes me hope that I could visit these worthless wastes of oxygen while they sleep — just grab a gun, walk up to them and put two in their heads. I’m not proposing it as a good solution, mind you, I’m just describing the mindset a certain kind of evil puts me in. (I’m not a huge fan of the word “evil”, I should probably stress, but in some situations I’m at a loss as to what word would — or could — be more appropriate.)

For example, take these cancerous growths in the rectum of humanity, who used a mentally disabled pregnant woman as their slave and as target practice, until she died:

Banished to the basement, the 29-year-old mother with a childlike mind and another baby on the way had little more than a thin rug and a mattress to call her own on the chilly concrete floor.

Dorothy Dixon ate what she could forage from the refrigerator upstairs, where housemates used her for target practice with BBs, burned her with a glue gun and doused her with scalding liquid that peeled away her skin.

They torched what few clothes she had, so she walked around naked. They often pummeled her with an aluminum bat or metal handle.

Dixon — six months pregnant — died after weeks of abuse. Police have charged two adults, three teenagers and a 12-year-old boy with murder in the case that has repulsed many in this Mississippi River town.

So, yeah, if I thought I could get away with it? There’s a good chance I would make myself a murderer right there and then. Of course, it’s entirely possible that when putting that gun on them, I’d lose my nerve or my morals would reassert themselves, but considering that just reading this article makes me want to put my fist through my monitor, it’s also possible that I’d go through with it.

The problem is, it’s hard to think of reasons why that wouldn’t make the world a little better place. After all, what the fuck do people like this contribute to society? Is there anything to be gained by letting them live? I mean, how do you even have a conversation with someone like this? Is that like talking to guy who worked at a Nazi concentration camp, listening to the justifications and excuses? Or, even worse, is that like talking with a human hole, someone who can’t explain their actions or the reasons for them, other than it’s just how things happened to end up because of some kind of inertia that inevitably dragged them into it? I would have to be a better man than I am to not want to hurt them — no, not even hurt them, but erase them. Just rid the world of these people.

And I know they’re not exceptional. I know there are reasons why they are the way they are, some of which go far beyond their control. More often than not, people like this are made, shaped from birth by abuse and lack of education and the kind of hardening and casual cruelty that only ignorant, indifferent and cruel adults are capable of — one bruise, squashed dream and denied emotional connection at a time. There are people who are just wired wrong from birth, I suppose, but they are the rare exception; most of our evil we make ourselves, by stomping on others so that they heal all wrong, like a broken limb that isn’t set properly. I know that.

But the problem is that my reasons against just putting these people down like rabid dogs tend to be fairly abstract (“it’s not good for our society”) or stemming from my personal weaknesses (“I don’t want to get caught”), and put against the instant gratification of that kind of murder (“motherfucker had it coming, if anyone ever did”) and even the ego boost (“I have made the world a better place”), they seem like weak arguments.

And, yeah, that’s a huge part of the problem, I know. More often than not, the secret to doing terrible things that you know to be wrong is to simply rationalize it away, little by little; throw in a little bit of peer pressure, quiet acceptance from the society at large or the approval or even praise of an authority figure, and there you go, it goes from murder to public service to duty. That, in large part, is what enables wars, never mind lesser acts of violence. I recognize that. But being fully aware of that and getting that searing hot flash of completely justified rage, of absolutely pure and morally righteous vengeance are two different things.

These useless bags of shit abused, humiliated and murdered a mentally disabled pregnant woman, leaving her other child an orphan. I don’t think that the rest of the society should put them to death or have them swallow some teeth. I don’t think any government has the right to do that. I don’t. But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t want it to happen. I’m trying to feel guilty about that, and I can’t do it. The best I can manage is the knowledge that failing to do so doesn’t make me a better person.

Comments Off on those utterly punchable people


more dickery

Mon Mar-10th-2008 // Filed under: I Rant!

And while I’m at it, I guess I might as well point out some other people who’re complete dicks, besides the Supreme Court of Appeal in Rome.

Let’s start with Sally Kern, an Oklahoma State Representative, and — I know I’m stating the obvious here — a Republican. Not that all Republicans are dicks, mind you, but when you hear about an American politician who’s being a complete dick, chances are you’re going to have a certain expectation before you even hear the name, and you’re not likely to be wrong there. Just saying.

Anyway! What’s wrong with Kern, you say? Well! Take a look. Or a listen, really; the video is what it is, and I can appreciate the sentiment there, but never mind that, just listen to some bona fide religion-fueled hatred being spewed by yet another old white person. That Sally, she’s just a barrel of laughs! She’s a dick, and she was probably voted in by dicks — I mean, even if she wasn’t expecting this particular bit of speechcraft to make it into the internet, I kinda doubt her stance on these things was a well-guarded secret that just now made it out.

Of course, Italian judges and American politicians don’t have a monopoly on being fully deserving of Jim Kelly-style punches to the throat. Professional athletes are also completely capable of being dicks, as golfer Tripp Isenhour just had to go and prove the other day. See, he was kinda annoyed by a bird, so he decided to solve the problem by driving golf balls at the animal. After a while, to no one’s surprise, he actually hit the bird. In the head.

The bird in question was a red-shouldered hawk, a protected species classified with a conservation status of “least concern” — meaning that it’s not exactly endangered, but it’s not on the list because there are enough of them to go around to be killed by asshole golfers, either. Of course, that whole “protected animal” thing is just a cherry on top; even if it was an ordinary pigeon, that’s still full-on asshole behaviour. To drive the point home, Isenhour refers to the whole thing as “an accident”, because it was a “one-in-a-million” shot. Yeah, he was just trying to hit the bird, he never expected to hit the bird, so that’s why it was an accident. Like a lightning bolt out of a clear sky, it just happened! It was a regrettable case of bad luck that completely coincidentally happened to include him! That’s a heartfelt apology right there.

Seriously, what a dick.

Moving on to dicks that may be smaller but definitely make up for it with numbers, five kids buried their 10-year old playmate in sand, head first. Now, I’m just going to let the “but we didn’t know it would be bad for him!” thing pass without comment…

Oh, hell, no.

I mean, what the fuck? At that age I never had any illusions about people needing to breathe in order to survive. I know for a fact I had figured that shit out by the time I started school, and I’m sure I kind of grasped the fundamentals of the concept at an even earlier age. But even if we assume that these five little geniuses were just completely ignorant of the fact that you can’t actually breathe if your head is completely buried, what the hell were they doing? Were they being nice?

No. They were being dicks.

People, stop being dicks! STOP IT.



asking for it

Mon Mar-10th-2008 // Filed under: I Rant!

Ah, Italy! That Mediterranean wonderland of absolutely magnificent food, ancient culture and rampant misogyny. A few years ago, the Supreme Court of Appeal in Rome ruled that a rape victim couldn’t have been raped because she was wearing jeans, and you cannot remove a pair of jeans from somebody “without the collaboration of the person who is wearing them”.

Having come to this completely sensible conclusion, the court promptly reversed the rape conviction of a 45-year old driving instructor who, up until that point, had been convicted of raping his 18-year old student. Thus, the Supreme Court of Appeal in Rome’s sharp eye for justice revealed him for what he truly was: a man in a strongly patriarchal culture who was unable to either physically undress a woman young enough to be his daughter or intimidate her into doing so.

Of course, how the hell do I know what happened out there on the road? I don’t. I have no idea. But I do know that given the circumstances, I’m pretty goddamn sure I would have at least an even chance of getting an 18-year old girl undressed one way or the other, even if she happened to be wearing jeans and wasn’t all that keen on the idea. (Hell, I’m not real keen on the idea, you understand; I’m just saying that I think it’s well in the realm of physical and/or psychological possibility.)

So, ladies in Italy, please take note: short skirts are wrong, because you’re sending out a signal that you’re a whore and are obviously asking for it, and jeans are wrong, because you can’t get raped in them and therefore you must have been asking for it. I mean, what’s wrong with you? If you’d just stop asking for it, nobody would ever get raped! It’s just science.

Science, and justice.


 


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