ECTS for RIOT Seminars

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by eriehiker, Dec 17, 2020.

  1. eriehiker

    eriehiker Active Member

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  2. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Riot Science? Those shouldn't be "seminars" - they should be "demonstrations," shouldn't they? Oh, not that kind of RIOT... sorry. :)
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  3. Dustin

    Dustin Well-Known Member

    Is a virtual flash mob a quiet riot?
  4. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Quiet Riot is either that or one of my younger son's favorite bands when he was a kid, in the 80s. I remember he liked Whitesnake and Ozzie Osbourne, too - and Black Sabbath post-Ozzie, as well. :)

    I remember how traumatic it was, for both my young sons (9 and 6, then), when Ozzie and Black Sabbath parted company in 1979. They wondered how either would survive. Nobody went hungry - and Ozzy rejoined Sabbath in 1997. In 2013, he was there for the group's final album and a farewell tour.
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2020
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  5. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Might one be permitted to attend such a seminar in a Zoot Suit? Asking for a friend...
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  6. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Not in L.A. At least not officially. It is still illegal to wear a Zoot suit in Los Angeles. (I looked it up.) But I hear they are frequently worn for retro-parties etc. anyway. Like those pimp-suits of the 60s that are now sold as party-suits. They should be illegal as taste-violations. No self-respecting man living off the avails of prostitution would wear one today -ever.

    Who's that whisperin' in the trees?
    It's two sailors and they're on leave
    Pipes and chains and swingin' hands
    Who's your daddy? Yes I am…

    The 1997 song "Zoot Suit Riot" really talked to me. Musically, it was my kind of thing and I didn't have to like what it said, but it was important to say. (The name of the group --- awful!) The actual riots --- I'm not quite old enough to remember. I was 6 months old (1943).
  7. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I was talking to a lawyer friend of mine recently about silly laws that are on the books. He pointed out that adultery is a misdemeanor in the state of New York though it is (obviously) very seldom prosecuted. He evidently looked it up while he was in law school and the only times it had been used in the last few decades was to tack extra charges onto someone who was being charged with many other crimes. It's actually quite difficult to be convicted of it as, according to him, even confessing to adultery is not sufficient to convict under the statute.

    I have always wanted to be charged with a silly and obviously unconstitutional crime. Of course, my wife might take issue with my committing adultery, though I think she might feel just as opposed to my sporting a zoot suit in public...
  8. Thorne

    Thorne Active Member

    I can see the XKCD now

    "Sir, do you have a criminal record?"
    "What happened?"
    "I was wearing my zoot suit at a block party that I held in my garage where I stored my speaker set used for the block party. As a part of the show, I had a self-driving car going 90mph around a race track. They got me for all three"
    "...but why?"
    "It was on my bucket list"
  9. Dustin

    Dustin Well-Known Member

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  10. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Interesting. I note in the case described in the article, and in another, which is therein cited, both defendants are women with common Roma (Gypsy) surnames - Butch in one case and Stevenson in another, which is one of several very common names among Canadian Roma - e.g. Mitchell, Miller, Stokes, and yes, Stevenson, among others. I suspect this "falsely practicing witchcraft" charge was dreamed up to deter Roma women from practicing fortune-telling, which has long been a mainstay for feeding their families. You go to most larger cities, there'll be a district where you'll find a few ofisas , or fortune-telling parlors. Most cases: Lady tells someone what they want to hear - pockets a fee - another happy customer. That's it. Usually. More later.

    I like Roma people. We've had quite a few in Canada for around 100 -110 years. Many more lately, since people in European countries have burned more of their houses than usual, or politicians fomented more public campaigns against them. People have been at that for 500+ years there. Not a pleasant place for most Roma. They're culturally very rich - and (I think) among the best musicians at improvising in the entire world - and not solely in their own brand of jazz, either. And their language (which originated in India) is very interesting indeed.

    Back to the ofisa, for a minute. (I think there's another, older Romani word for it, too - dukyaika; 'dukkering' is 'telling fortunes' among English Romani people). By no means is the following confined to Roma people. Once in a while, some unfortunate person will seek out someone he/she thinks has "psychic ability" to deal with some misfortune e.g. someone sick in the family etc. That person they find is by no means always a Rom. But whoever they find, Roma or other, will sometimes use what they are told to defraud the 'client' of money, promising to cure the sick, or "remove a curse" etc. Never happens. Money disappears.

    As I said, this kind of thing is by NO means limited to Roma people. It is not confined to any nation. The worst case I can think of, in my town, involved a woman of Italian background (I mention this for a reason NOT related to ethnic prejudice), who bilked a fairly sophisticated individual - a woman executive of a supermarket chain - out of close to $100,000 in a totally fake claim to heal the younger woman's sick mother. The fraudster's Italian background probably came in handy, as her victim shared that background. This bad woman drew jail time for the offence. I was surprised when I read about the case, because I had known this woman quite well, twenty years previously; she was then leading quite a prosperous life, running her own successful business, with no prior hint of her fall into criminality.

    My three points:

    (1) The "fake witchcraft" charge may have been prejudicial - ethnically motivated, to get rid of all fortune-tellers. Glad it's gone, either way.
    (2) Too much unwarranted prejudice against Roma - still exists. We're (Canada) not nearly free of it yet re: other ethnic groups either.
    (3) No need for weird charges. ALL offenders can be prosecuted under existing fraud, false pretenses etc. statutes.
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2020
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  11. Dustin

    Dustin Well-Known Member

    Thanks for that background Johann! I'm no stranger to the persecution of the Roma but never connected that charge specifically to them at all!
  12. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Glad you're aware, Dustin. Unfortunately, the Canadian Encyclopedia doesn't seem to have heard of it. Big article here, no mention of Roma. Not a word.

    Funny -The CBC and other news sources are well aware:

    Prejudice of all varieties is alive and well here. Big choice of supremacist orgs. New generation of members. I see young guys all the time with small, discreet labels on the bumpers of their shiny restored Firebirds and similar cars: "Fit in or F*** Off," "Speak English or get the F*** out," etc. And the self-righteous here waggle their sanctimonious fingers at U.S. all the time.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2020
  13. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    It may be a controversial take on my part, but I don't believe any manner of fortune telling or witchcraft or what-have-you should be eligible for prosecution. If we start prosecuting people for using spiritual beliefs to extract money from other people then we need to start criminalizing mainstream religions. Televangelists never go down for bleeding people dry. They go down for tax evasion or, in the case of Jim Bakker, fraud, and it wasn't because the eternal life he promised didn't materialize; it was because he was trying to sell unregistered securities under a religious guise.

    I think it is a terrible idea if a person were to leave a spouse because their psychic told them they were cheating or because their tarot reader said it was a good idea. I don't think you should juice your savings account because your astrologer said you should go to the casino and put it all on red.

    But if you do...that's on you. Freedom of religion cuts both ways. You're free to make your life better with religion and you're free to screw up your life because of religion. Just don't break other laws in the process.

    When I was in (Catholic) high school there were plenty of situations where someone said something rude or sarcastic and thought they were incredibly clever. Usually, teachers were not amused and years later I can see how what was said (sometimes by me!) was not nearly so clever. However, a notable exception was that we had this one priest who taught theology and was railing against witchcraft. It was high school and wicca was trending hard among the sophomore class. He pointed out how ludicrous it was to believe in magic etc. Then, from the far corner of the room, this girl who NEVER said anything sort of squeaked out "Crazier than transubstantiation and the hypostatic union?"

    At first we thought this priest was going to blow. He was a hot head. But she was also not a known troublemaker and was a very good student. Eventually, he broke the tension and laughed and acknowledged that, if you think about it, all faith kind of sounds crazy to an outsider. Still, he recommended you go with centuries of sacred tradition instead of Gerald Gardner (who, incidentally, also sported a fake PhD).

    If you don't pay taxes on your fortune telling money, you should face consequences. If you try to sell shares in a corporation without filing them with relevant authorities and claiming they are actually "spiritual shares" and thus exempt, you should face the consequences. But no one should be punished because their weird beliefs sound absurd to someone else with their own weird beliefs.
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  14. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Just as an aside, I am still bothered by the fact that over the course of my career I have had to terminate the employment of two people who refused to accept "your religious freedom doesn't mean you get to suppress someone else's religious freedom." You're talking about matters that were each resolved within a day each. So two days over an ever lengthening career. And it still bothers me.

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