Friday, August 16, 2002

Have Something to Say?
Oh, the mysteries of blogging. How, for example, does one add a "link-to" e-mail address so that readers can rebutt, condemn or praise the blogger? At this hour, the answer is elusive but the search continues. In the meantime, if you have something to say, send e-mail to

Double Down
To be clear, when Charles "Andy" Williams opened fire on March 5, 2001, killing two and injuring thirteen others, he was wrong, morally and legally, and the authorities were right to prosecute him. Williams should be punished for his crimes, if not as pre-emption -- there's no compelling reason to think he represents a continuing danger to society -- then as retribution and to reinforce the social imperative against indiscriminate or excessive violence. But there's more to the case of Andy Williams than a teenager who went off the deep end and started lighting people up.

In the months before his rampage, Andy endured near-constant bullying at the hands of his peers. To wit:

classmates lit cigarette lighters and held the hot tips to his neck;

kids sprayed Andy with hair spray and then tried to set him on fire;

he was hit with a towel severely enough to cause welts;

he was slammed against a tree twice;

he was held down and urinated on;

he was badly beaten;

his head was repeatedly dunked in a toilet or urinal containing human waste;

he was punched and kicked while walking down his school's hallways;

his backpack was thrown into a toilet;

his shoes were stolen right off his feet.

Williams was also often late to class as he tried to avoid the bullies who stalked him.

Reports of these and other incidents, and an article on the long-standing problem of bullying at Santana High School, come from The San Diego Union Tribune.

Prosectuor Kris Anton says the bullying Williams suffered did not justify his shooting rampage. That's true. There is no evidence that Bryan Zuckor, 14, or Randy Gordon, 17, both of whom died in the attack, or the school monitor or teacher who were wounded in the attack, were among those who had bullied Andy. Moreover, since Andy was not under physical assault at the moment he opened fire, he was engaged in an act of unfocused revenge, not self-defense. But it's hard to not feel some sympathy for a 15-year-old boy who was repeatedly taunted, beat, pissed on and stolen from. And while those acts do not justify Andy's rampage, neither does his rampage excuse from prosecution those who victimized him. This blog originates in Texas, which doesn't cotton to criminals. But surely even the large, outdoor lunatic asylum of California makes it a crime to rip people off, pee on them, or beat them.

Andy deserves to go to prison (although his youth and the context of his offenses make the 50 year sentence he received yesterday seem harsh.) But he shouldn't be going there alone. Ms. Anton, now that Andy's case is over, find all the little bastards who tormented him and jack 'em up.

Crock Watch
A San Francisco AIDS drone complains that the CDC is on a "witch hunt" for inquiring into the effectiveness of HIV prevention programs in that city.

"I am seethingly angry that this witch hunt is being presided over by a CDC director who is a doctor on leave from [the University of California at San Francisco]," Luke Adams, a policy analyst in the Mayor's Office of AIDS & HIV Policy, wrote in an Internet message to a homosexual group. "She is a scientist who KNOWS BETTER, and is obviously playing political games on behalf of the Bush administration and certain members of Congress. I am appalled that they are willing to risk lives to attempt to drum up political capital."

Oh, get over yourself, girl. There isn't a living gay man in America who doesn't know how HIV is transmitted or how to prevent it. If gay lives are at risk, the Bush Administration isn't responsible for that, gay men are. Mr. Adams offers the same clap-trap we heard twenty years ago when President Reagan was in power. When is the gay Left going to stop blaming Republicans for what gay men do with their dicks?

To hell with a do-nothing inquiry into this taxpayer-funded nonsense. Shut it down.

Where is the Human Rights Campaign When You Need It?
From Yossi Klein Halevi, writing in The New Republic:

Tayseer, as we'll call him, a 21-year-old Gazan whose constant smile tries to conceal watchfulness, learned early on that to be gay in Palestine is to be a criminal. Three years ago his older brother caught him in bed with a boyfriend. He was beaten by his family, then warned by his father that he'd strangle Tayseer if it ever happened again.

It happened again a few months later. Word gets around a refugee camp, and a young man he didn't know invited Tayseer into an orange grove. The next day he received a police summons. At the station Tayseer was told that his sex partner was in fact a police agent whose job is to ferret out homosexuals. If Tayseer wanted to avoid prison, he too would have to become an undercover sex agent, luring gays into orchards and turning them over to the police.

Tayseer refused to implicate others. He was arrested and hung by his arms from the ceiling. A high-ranking officer he didn't know arranged for his release and then demanded sex as payback. Tayseer fled Gaza to Tulkarem on the West Bank, but there too he was eventually arrested. He was forced to stand in sewage water up to his neck, his head covered by a sack filled with feces, and then he was thrown into a dark cell infested with insects and other creatures he could feel but not see. ("You slap one part of your body, and then you have to slap another," he recounts.) During one interrogation, police stripped him and forced him to sit on a Coke bottle. Through the entire ordeal he was taunted by interrogators, jailers, and fellow prisoners for being a homosexual.

When he was released a few months later, Tayseer crossed into Israel. He now lives illegally in an Arab Israeli village and works in a restaurant. His dream is to move to Tel Aviv. "No one there cares if you're gay," he says. These days, though, he knows that an illegal Gazan in Tel Aviv risks being deported and that he's safest staying where he is.

And if he were sent back to Gaza? "The police will kill me," he says. "Unless my father gets to me first."

The anti-homosexual bigotry of the Palestinians -- and indeed of the Arab world generally -- is greeted by the American Left, including its gay precincts, with silence. After all, the Jews aren't engaged in the sadistic and pathological practice of forcing teenage boys to sit on Coke bottles, so where's the fun in commenting on it?

Tip to gay Palestinian youth: if you want justice, find an Israeli Jew to force a Coke bottle up your ass. As long as you suffer at the hands of your own, the loud mouths in the West won't give a shit. The Left is interested only in opportunities to feel smug and self-righteous, and if you ask it to condemn a Palestinian culture that is in shambles, both physical and moral, it won't -- there being no satisification in the task. Jews on the other hand, namely Israeli Jews, are members of a powerful and decent Western society, and any opportunity to excoriate them -- e.g, covering your head in a sack of feces -- will meet the Left's need for intellectual primming.

Wednesday, August 14, 2002

Victimhood Reaches a Zenith
Rally all you like. But if you want to know where mainstream America draws the line, this is it. Word to the advocates of "reparations:" never.

Coming to Their Senses?
Support for Homicide Bombers May Be Dwindling
Fox News— Atta Sarasara has lost everything. First his 16-year-old son, Hazem, blew himself up in Jerusalem. Then the Israeli army blew up the Palestinian man's home as a result -- to discourage future suicide bombers.

Sarasara is angry with not just the Israelis, but also with the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades for preying on impressionable teenagers and giving his son a bomb.

"They used a child. He was very kind, handsome, smart. They used him," Sarasara said.

For the first time in the current uprising, ordinary Palestinians beginning to wonder what homicide bombings against Israelis achieve, echoing a statement signed by several dozen Palestinian intellectuals two months ago.

But few people in the street will question the bombing strategy publicly for fear of being seen as admitting defeat at the hand of the Israelis.

Israel has demolished the family homes of 21 bombers in recent days. Palestinian spokesmen say this only increases the bombers' willingness to attack Israel, but in at least two cases this week, fathers prevented their sons from volunteering.

One man turned his son over to the police in Tulkarem, while another in Nablus shot his son in the leg.

Sarasara said he didn't know his son planned to be a bomber, and therefore couldn't stop him. He also questioned whether his son would have carried out the mission had he known the Israelis would retaliate by tearing down his father's house.

Asked if he would allow another one of his sons to commit a suicide bombing, Sarasara said, "I don't think so."

"[The bombing] increases the suffering of the people from both sides -- from the Israeli side and the Palestinian side," said Bethlehem resident Ayyah Saad.

Hamas, the organization behind many homicide bombings, appears to have been sensing the change in public opinion.

In the days before the Israeli military killed its military wing's leader, and 14 others, in a rocket attack in Gaza, rumors circulated in the Israeli and Palestinian media that Hamas leaders had drafted pledging to end to attacks inside the pre-1967 borders of Israel.

The offer was apparently shelved after the Gaza attack, but it appears it may be viable again. Politicians on both sides point out that soldiers and settlers in the West Bank and Gaza would still be considered fair targets.

A Hamas-sponsored summer camp in Bethlehem provides an outlet to children who've been cooped up in their homes as Israeli tanks and soldiers patrol the streets. The Islamic organization may be winning the hearts and minds of the next generation, but they may lose support from the parents if homicide bombings remain their only strategy.

Monday, August 12, 2002

Don't Pee on the Floor
Well, well. A look at a rare instance of sanity in the public schools.

Final Protective Fire
More well-written common sense on the web from blogger Robin Roberts.

Double Standards
From Best of the Web: "A pilot for a Delta Air Lines subsidiary would not fly Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Michael Melchior from Cincinnati to Toronto because the pilot thought Melchior posed a security risk," the Associated Press reports. Melchior, who was being escorted by State Department officials, was forced to catch a later flight. A spokeswoman for the subsidiary, Comair, tells ABC News that "it was a procedural matter that involved securing the proper paperwork for a firearm," though she refuses to elaborate further.

Something similar happened back in December to an Arab-American Secret Service agent, prompting shrieks of outrage from the Council on American Islamic Relations and others. The sound you hear now is silence.
For more from the Best of the Web, click here. Written by professional blogger James Taranto, it's a must read.

Sunday, August 11, 2002

Nail on the Head
Writing for the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal, Michael Oren, author of "Six Days of War," hits the nail on the head:

"In Gaza last week, crowds of children reveled and sang while adults showered them with candies. The cause for celebration: the cold-blooded murder of at least seven people--five of them Americans--and the maiming of 80 more by a terrorist bomb on the campus of Jerusalem's Hebrew University. The joyful response of so many to the death, suffering and mutilation of students and university workers raises pointed questions about the health of Palestinian society, both mental and moral. It makes many Israelis ask whether, even if a cease-fire is reached and negotiations someday resume, peace with the Palestinians is possible."

The full essay is here.