Thursday, February 14, 2013

Reality crafting

Trigger Warnings: Murder, Violence against women 

 This is going to be a blog mostly about autism that I hope someday somebody reads once I figure out what the hell I am doing.  However I am going to go way off topic and talk about a story from the sports world today because I think it is pertinent to this recent post I made, this post on Radical Neurodivergence Speaking and to the plight that many minorities in general face.

  Today I woke up to the disheartening news that double amputee olympian Oscar Pistorius has been arrested for shooting his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp 4 times fatally.

"Blade Runner" Pistorius charged with murdering girlfriend

  Pistorius was presented to the public as an inspiration by the global media and became a huge sensation over the last few years as he strove to compete in London last summer, and succeeded.  At face value it is an inspirational story.  An inspirational story that generates a lot of sales and views on sports media sites, and a lot of ratings for the Olympics.

  I could hardly fault mass media if Pistorius did this out of the blue.  But, Policewoman Denise Beukes told the reporter :
"I can confirm that there has previously been incidents at the home of Mr Oscar Pistorious, of allegations of domestic nature,"

  So wait a minute!  You mean to tell me that in the countless hours the media has spent "presenting" this man's inspirational tale over the past several years, not a single reporter discovered that he has a history of violence against women?  In this day and age where TMZ can tell us how many times Miley Cyrus used a public toilet in the last 2 weeks and the exact locations, no journalist could dig this information up?

   Woman beating kind of creates a problem when you are trying to craft the heroic legend of the "Blade Runner".  Media turns a blind eye to the truth when the truth complicates or completely negates the end story they are trying to manufacture.  
   Pistorius did a night in jail in 2009 for slamming a door on a woman.  Charges were dismissed as a "misunderstanding".  No leading sports journalist could bring this up on one of the hundreds of times he has been interviewed?

   The media loves to build you up until they can't sell you anymore.  Then they tear you down with equal passion.  The article mentions several times his not so often previously reported love for firearms and his competence handling them, painting the picture that he is absolutely guilty of a crime.  There is a chance, a slim chance that this was a tragic accident.  His defense was that he mistaken her for a burglar.  Crime rates are obscene in South Africa.  Facts need to come out and there needs to be a trial.  Instead of defending their golden boy though, the media is already passing a guilty verdict in this case.  And they do so by reporting details of his life that they conveniently omitted when creating a hero.  

   Finally, this article's ending is extremely mysogynistic.  
"Oscar is a good guy, an upstanding neighbor, and if he is innocent I feel for this guy deeply,"

   So he is a good guy and an upstanding neighbor whether or not he beat women in his home or shot Reeva on purpose or not?

  My deepest condolences to Reeva Steenkamp and family.

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