Statute of Limitations

This entry springs into existence from mulling the Kavanaugh hearings for the Supreme Court confirmation in the light of Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations.

My knee jerk response, as a guy, upon learning of Ford’s allegations was that the alleged incident happened in high school, more than 30 years ago and should not be part of this hearing. Does a misdeed dog you all your life? Does foolish, maybe criminal behavior, as a youth follow and affect you all life long?

My secondary response was to look up how many states have no statute of limitations on felony sexual assault. Eight (8) states have no statute of limitations, while a total of twenty-seven (27) have defined circumstances that cause no statute of limitations.  I do not know if what Kavanaugh is alleged to have done qualifies as a felony.

Because sexual assault affects and influences the victim’s entire life, I have decided that if Ms. Ford’s allegation is true or simply credible, Kavanaugh should not be confirmed to the Supreme Court. In a he said/she said confrontation, I believe we should lean toward believing the injured party. I am not a fan of Kavanaugh in the first place, so this leap is easy for me to make in this case, but I think we should treat all cases this way.

I think that the statute of limitations on a crime should be extended to a period that mirrors how long the injury affects the victim, if it extends past a legal set minimum— seven years. Any crime that involves violence or trauma to the victim would have a statute of limitation until the victim was done with physical rehab and any therapy to recover from the trauma—which might be their whole life.

On the assumption that the allegation is true, this episode reveals a deeper part of Kavanaugh that I read as a disrespect for other people’s rights. The drunkenness involved is not an excuse, but a door that opened to how he views the world. He is privileged, where other people’s rights do not matter. Not the sort of person I would want on the Supreme Court to enforce the laws of the land in an even and just manner. In fact not the sort of person I want on any federal court bench.

Again, assuming the allegation is true, it brings the question to mind, if Kavanaugh has been an upright person for the last thirty years, are we (society) applying justice or vengeance or something else when putting a big dent in his life by not confirming him to the supreme court? If the assault was prosecuted in the year following the incident with a guilty verdict, would Kavanaugh have made it to where he is today or would he have become an ambulance chasing lawyer or been prevented from all white collar positions in society.

There is something to be said for the victim’s right to closure and knowing society has their back in enforcing the law, even if it is delayed. (Hmm. I am not sure closure is a right, but I do not have a better word for it.)

I disagree with the GOP senator’s idea of pushing Kavanaugh’s confirmation through and concluding hearings with no FBI investigation. To me that smacks of the good ol’ boy network protecting their own in the knowledge they all have past incidents that would not survive scrutiny if they ever came to light.

In the spirit of the golden rule, I think each of us should think before we act and weigh the effect of our actions on the rights of others to the best of our ability. I do not know that this idea is compatible with capitalism and type-a personalities. It is definitely not compatible with manifest destiny if any one continues to use that argument to justify their deeds.

Love & Light

Kenneth

 

19 Sep 2018 poem

More Than Necessary

I have a dump truck full of tater-tots
and no ketchup—

only a suburban subdivision house’s backyard pool
full of mayonnaise.

I realize this is all a bit extreme for a party of one.
I realize, now, how important planning is.

The suburban subdivision house possesses
enough garden gnomes for a Paramount movie.

Excess seems to be a pattern in this poem.
Excess. Excess. Excess. Excess. Excess.

In your mind picture each Excess applying larger font sizes
until only the top bar of the fifth Excess’s “E” fits on the page.

I am addicted to surreal excesses.
I once proposed milling a bowler to top Brussels’ skyline.

New York City’s Big Apple is the granny smith green apple
I suspended in front of the Statue of Liberty’s face.

 

 

10 Sep 2018 poem

Stillness

Around the Buddhist Center
I set traps to capture Stillness.
It was live traps I set.
Stillness pelts have a very low market value.

The first bait I used
was hand-written copies of Basho’s haiku,
but no Stillness was trapped that night.

The second bait I used
was Enya recordings,
but, again, no Stillness was encaged.

The third item I used to bait the traps
were children sized snow angels.

Each of these nights,
not wishing to scare Stillness away,
I silently sat and waited for the click-snap
to shut the open gate,
while I relaxed against a Sycamore trunk,
listened to the night sounds
and gave the visible stars
and constellations new names
such as Winnie the Pooh and Snoopy.

On the fourth night with dried Datura blossoms
placed into the live trap to attract Stillness,
I relaxed so much into the Sycamore trunk
that it partially absorbed me for the night.
I felt water draw up roots from the earth
and became comfortable
with all the little creepy-crawly,
furry, and winged creatures
that call a tree home.

6 Sep 2018 Poem

Joan of Arc’s Alter Egos

Joan of Parabola.
Joan of Line Segment.
Joan of Cotangent.
Joan of Equilateral Triangles.
Joan of Pythagorean theorem.

Joan of Tabloid Exploits.
Joan of You Tube Memes.
Joan of Trending on Twitter.
Joan of Infowars.
Joan of Washington Post.

Joan of Red Tape.
Joan of the Bottom Line.
Joan of Quarterly Reports.
Joan of Wall Street.
Joan of Federal Reserve.
Joan of Congress.

Joan of Algonquin.
Joan of Cheyenne.
Joan of Iroquois.
Joan of Lakota.
Joan of Narragansett.
Joan of Navajo.
Joan of Nez Pierce.
Joan of Pueblo.
Joan of Seneca.
Joan of Zuni.

Absence Explained

You may have noticed that my blog has been quiet for the last two weeks, even the poetry portion of my entries. This was not a planned absence, like a late summer holiday. It was a malfunction of my keyboard which required an overlong stay at the Apple repair facilities. Overlong in that I was originally told the repair would be 3-5 days, then 5-7 days, then 7-10 days, then “we’ll call you when it’s fixed” days.

Day 16 and my laptop computer is finally returned to me. (A year or so ago I decided to downsize to one computer when my desktop got fried by lightning.)

It turns out my laptop is part of a generation of laptops with easily disabled keyboards. Link to Article about the problem. The only good thing about this whole affair is that I had 8 days remaining on my warranty which saved me the $310 repair bill.

Without my computer, I discovered how much of my life is routed through the device. All my creative writing, my graphic design, most of my news gathering, and my access to MLB radio broadcasts.

I did wander around aimlessly the first few days not knowing what to do or how to handle the isolation (an exaggeration). I ended up watching a bit more TV. I did my physical therapy twice a day instead of once. I bicycled a little farther each day. I still stopped at my favorite cafe to write and read, but I wrote letters (instead of email or poetry or short stories). And I purchased drawing paper and colored pencils for “analog” (non-digital) artwork.

The absence of my laptop top forced me to learn to do some digital age stuff on my smart phone: I learned to use the Apple Podcast app to listen to Malcolm Gladwell and Freakanomics. I loaded the TED app to continue my practice of watching TED talks during physical therapy. I learned to do my banking via my phone so my bills could get paid on time (you will earn no interest from me VISA [shaken fist in air]).

My opinion of Apple has suffered, but has been in decline for the last 8 years or so. Apple has not become as maddening as Microsoft of the 1990s, but they are headed in that direction. I am still waiting for software fixes from 2016—small stuff, but annoying and need to be addressed. My I phone 8 has just been recalled. I think becoming the first trillion dollar company in the world went to Apple’s head and they attempt to go in too many directions above what their current level of brain power can actually handle in a quality manner that I previously loved about Apple.

Has my computer respite taught me anything? Yes. My creative life is very digital: writing, design, and photography. My music is digital. My sports is partially digital. My clothes shopping is digital. Also, I learned I am not ready to commit to going back to the analog world, though I would like to have as much hair as I did 30 years ago.

I will start back up posting poems tomorrow in the next entry.

Love & Light

Kenneth

18 August 2018 poem

Cannon Ball

I placed one toe in the river Styx
to test the water.

I have no plan to cross over,
but a spirit shaking splash seems necessary
to invigorate my sense of living.

An old man at one of many temples yells,
Hey, you have to purchase a ticket.

Such a gloomy Gus.
Such a clock face frozen at eleven-fifty-nine
and fifty-eight seconds.

Before I jump in, an aquatic woman rises to the surface,
emerges, effortlessly treads water,
her lipstick smeared as if just after a passionate kiss.

She points to the Sunday School kids’
bake sale cookies and requests the sourest lemon bar
to give her a bit more pucker.

On a velvet cushion a single lemon bar rests.
In red letters on a piece of white poster board
in a bold script, is the word Everything.

I search the cluttered days of my life
and locate hundreds of plastic trash bags
filled with well and poorly spent time
twist-tied together with a long, white, double spaced list
of unrequited crushes.

I think twice about it. Then a third time.
Then, with a running start,
I jump into the river,
making the biggest ferry dock passenger drenching splash
I know how to plunge.


copyright © 2018 Kenneth P. Gurney

 

 

13 Aug 2018 poem

Investment Sale

A crowd of strangers gathers around me.
They are more interested in the stuff upon the table
than the person who lived that stuff into stories.

If they do not ask, they will never know
that Olympic National Park t-shirt
sweated through a bicycle ride all the way to Chicago.

Or feel the thousands of smiles
the camera captured for pithy captions
pinned to an interior wall covered in empty wine bottle corks.

An optimistic woman seems more interested
in the author signatures inside the poetry books,
than the poetry the books preserve to spark imaginations.

I discount the seven stacks of blank artist papers
and box of one hundred twenty-eight different colored pencils
and numerous sticks of charcoal for the eight year old.

She may be the next Helen Frankenthaler.
Or Mary Cassatt.
Or Hildegard von Bingen.