History-making music group for UMM - morris mn

History-making music group for UMM - morris mn
The UMM men's chorus opened the Minnesota Day program at the 1962 Seattle World's Fair (Century 21 Exposition).

Monday, March 17, 2014

Morris economy, image being dealt double-whammy

Craig Peterson, MAHS principal
On the macro stage we have that missing airliner the fate of which is likely dismal. On the micro level, Morris, news isn't rosy either. Here, this is the fateful week for the pre-trial hearing that is not only discouraging in and of itself, it could bring rather embarrassing media attention.
This news coincides with a major piece of bad business news for Morris: the departure of Morris Auto Plaza. Is this good news for the two remaining major car dealers? I would say no. Competition is good for attracting business. A perceived drop-off in competition could well be bad news.
But hovering over all of this is the fact that the traditional "dealership model" for selling cars may be set to implode. Yes, really. The Tesla company is trying to muscle in. We should be cheering for them (that is, if you're not a car salesman).
Tesla wants to sell its vehicles directly to the consumer - no "middleman" dealers. How about it? Would you like to bypass the dealer? Most people would. The Internet and tech have been knocking out the "middleman" in many spheres. Car sales is on the horizon for this. At first there's pushback from the old model for doing things. We're seeing that now.
But whether you like it or not, new tech with all its efficiencies is an irresistible, inevitable force.
 
Pre-trial hearing is Wednesday, March 19
The pre-trial hearing is about our embattled high school principal, a guy name of Craig Peterson (quite the pedestrian name by Minnesota standards). If you want to get lost in the Minneapolis phone book, just present yourself as "Craig Peterson." Sara Jane Olson tried this trick but it didn't work for her. She turned out to be "Kathleen Soliah" who was a female variant on Bill Ayers.
Our Mr. Peterson, who most people felt was a really good principal, hasn't even been able to work for a while. It seems to me that if he's unable to work, we shouldn't have to pay him. He's on paid leave. I wish I could have had a nice long "paid leave" when I was with the Sun Tribune newspaper. The private sector isn't as generous as the public sector.
Mr. Peterson is charged with some rather untoward behavior. He'd be lucky if "untoward" was the worst of it.
The people who hold law enforcement power in this community have decided Mr. Peterson needs to go on trial for first degree something-or-other. They use the word "conduct." It seems to me he's charged with something worse than unacceptable "conduct." Bad conduct is the sort of thing that would have you repeatedly writing a phrase on the blackboard in elementary school. "I will not salivate over women."
It would appear that Peterson is suspected of assault although that word isn't used. It's "conduct." This "conduct" could get the man tossed into prison for most of the rest of his life. I hope he at least gets to play badminton or something. Oh, I don't think he'll be convicted. It would be bad precedent if he was.
The story as it has been told perhaps by an overzealous police department, doesn't sound like a flat-out attack by a man on a woman. It was a mutually approved friendship that involved the two going to the man's house, under circumstances where it would seem a DWI could have arisen. They were lucky to avoid that.
At first the two checked out the bowling alley, legend has it. It was closed. There's a song inspiration: "The Closed Bowling Alley Blues." Bowling alleys are coming under financial duress because of changes in our culture and entertainment preferences - all connected to that tech development phenomenon I repeatedly cite.
Anyway, so our bowling alley overlooking beautiful Lake Crystal was closed. So they went to a private residence. The parties agreed to what might be called amorous behavior - kissing - on the way, according to the defendant. The police report continues with a reference to "making out" once these individuals got to the house.
"Making out?" Isn't that what Jane Fonda and Ted Turner did at the 1991 World Series? It doesn't seem like a very legally precise term.
We're supposed to know what was going on, and the bottom line is that it was behavior bringing sexual arousal. After that there's kind of a fog over what happened. When sexual arousal proceeds to a certain point, it can be difficult to just turn off. A feminist would want to throw a flower vase at me for saying that, but it's true. Wasn't this an issue in the Kobe Bryant case?
If a man is approaching orgasm, I would suggest his normal senses are suspended. That's just my opinion. A rabid feminist would say "no means no!" I would suggest that such a woman is probably a lesbian. She would view any male sexual behavior as an assault.
Alcohol clouds all of this.
In the final analysis, this sordid case, which could land Peterson in prison for at least one 30-year term, has seriously disrupted the Morris Area school year. You can't tell me everyone has adjusted just fine. It will be a long time before we can put this behind us.
 
Police dept. and its role
I wonder if the Morris Police Department is experiencing some pushback from its role in all this. Did you notice a couple weeks ago the "puff piece" feature on the Morris Police Department in the newspaper? Page 1?
Why was this called for? Aren't these just people doing their job? Without a doubt they do it, giving out routine citations with great frequency. But why the puff piece? Was the paper approached by friends or allies of the police department, pleading for some favorable "pub?" I was in the newspaper business for 27 years and I know how these things work.
Let the Morris Police Department stand on its own two feet. Heaven knows they work hard enough - too hard in my view. They use terms like "blacking out" and "making out" in the report re. Peterson, terms that don't seem to me to be adequately illustrative - they seem more an extension of comic book language.
 
Why am I writing about this?
I am motivated to write about the Peterson case, probably to the annoyance of some, by my belief the system seems profoundly unfair. The upcoming trial is supposed to be 50/50. Each side has a chance to "win" or be vindicated. But in the court of public opinion, it doesn't seem that way at all, as the name and photo of Peterson appear all over the place, connected to the most damning words, while the accuser's name appears nowhere.
We're supposed to assume the man is guilty? It's improper and un-American. I also feel the Morris PD deserves some scrutiny.
I still remember that young guy resplendent in his (expletive) uniform whipping around to do a big U-turn at the intersection by Pizza Hut, so as to "pursue" me because he noticed I wasn't wearing my seat belt. He got his man! We were parked along the shoulder for an extended time, feeling humiliated, lights flashing behind us. My father, now deceased, said a couple times: "Can we go now?" I had to tell him "No Dad, we can't."
Was the officer endangering public safety by how he pursued us? The PD would say "no," thumping their chest as they proclaim they never make any mistakes. I paid the (expletive) fine after being told by the court administrator's office that a clerical mistake was made at the Morris PD.
Our family was on its way home from the Senior Center. I guess we really deserved scrutiny. At one point the officer peered into the window and asked me, "Are these your parents?"
"It's none of your f--king business," I should have said. Well, we've been together as a family since 1955.
Maybe our society has erred in trying to wipe out cigarette smoking. Cigarettes are a sedative. Maybe they helped us ease back and take life more in stride.
You can read about my adventure paying the seat belt fine by clicking on the permalink below. This is another post for "Morris of Course."
 
The veracity of the police department report on the Peterson "adventure" can be judged starting on Wednesday. Will we find out this whole thing was a "setup?" Will we discover a third party was involved? Much speculation has circulated. Surely we cannot in Morris celebrate spring as per our normal manner.
 
Prosecutorial conduct
I gleaned the following from the "prosecutor integrity" website:
 
Probable cause is a foundational concept of the American criminal justice system. Lack of probable cause is particularly problematic in sexual assault cases. Not a single state now requires corroborating evidence of rape. This means charging decisions have come to rely on the alleged victim's "character, behavior and believability." But what are the objective indicia of these? Lacking an answer, the viability of the probable cause standard is called into question.
Wrongful convictions are more widespread than we realize. In Virginia: 15 per cent of convictions lacked a DNA match. Keep in mind that 15 per cent underestimates, because DNA analysis cannot exclude cases where the partners were romantically involved and sex was consensual. One-fourth of all cases of people wrongfully convicted, involve an allegation of sexual assault of an adult.
Another element to consider: "No-drop" prosecution policies. "No-drop" was originally designed as a means to discourage accusers from withdrawing a complaint once charges had been filed. In practice, no-drop appears to compromise prosecutors' ethical sensibilities by inducing them to short-circuit probable cause requirements. No-drop is commonplace. No-drop increases prosecution costs, courtroom delays and adverse consequences for victims. Nineteen percent of victims had been threatened with incarceration, or coerced by a prosecutor adhering to no-drop.
Many worry that prosecutors have lost sight of their ethical compass and too often dispense with fundamental notions of fairness.
 
Could this be over?
Remember the swirling rumors of about a month ago, that charges had been dropped (vs. Peterson)? Could it be this is what the accuser at one point desired? As for the "prosecution costs," I'd like to see some figures.
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

1 comment:

  1. No middleman dealership could be a tough job for Tesla, but the positive aspect of this is that whole profit will belong to the company.

    ReplyDelete