Friday, March 2, 2012

Shailey and Sarah and Sandra Fluke - American Attitudes About Women

Maybe I was disgusted by having re-read Sarah Palin's comment about  "boys will be boys" but a woman involved with them was "some broad." Perhaps I was inspired by Shailey standing up for herself and publishing her book. Or maybe it was seeing clips of pompous Rush Limbaugh calling a 30 year old named Sandra Fluke a slut and a prostitute because she testified in front of congress on behalf of women who use birth control pills. Worse than that, though, was the filthy idea that she should submit to being videotaped for his pleasured viewing.

 It's possible, too, that the comment by the biggest donor to the Santorum campaign was partly to blame. (You know the one about holding an asprin between the knees.) Then, again, I've been angry and amazed for weeks now while lawmakers from hell back the idea of forcing women to have vaginal ultrasounds, and congress prepared to vote on the Blunt amendment which would allow anyone to give any reason to deny health insurance to hard working American employees. Just say, "I morally object" and the corporations (ie "people" without heart nor soul) can save themselves gazillions.

Whatever it was, I was primed to take on the jerk in the train conductor's uniform who tried to bully me Thursday evening. I was ready to settle in to my long commute and finish up a posting for The Palin Place, when he chose me to humiliate. He picked the wrong person. I'm small but I'm fiesty. I'm female, but I'm not a second class citizen. I documented what happened on that train and it took my whole commute home and back in to work this morning. Then I sent it off to the president of the railroad. Because of that,  I didn't get to finish that post yet, and maybe that will turn out to be serendipitous. Instead, I'm going to share the letter I sent, and you all get a glimpse into one American woman's experience during this season of political actions directed at restricting women, taking away our choice and our health care. Then there's letting Rush calling a sexually active 30 year old a slut. I'm mad.

Just to help you guys understand the difference between living in this America as a female versus being male in our country - quick, give me the word that is the male equivalent. of "slut."

So, here's what I sent off to the president of the railroad today.  I'll redact here and there to protect the innocent but not the guilty.

Dear. Mr. [redacted]


Let me first say I am a regular commuter from [redacted] to [redacted]. I have never had a problem with any [railroad] employee, and in fact, in the four years of my daily commuting, I have been so pleased with the assistance of people in your main offices on three separate occasions -when I’ve lost my pass, lost personal belongings, and had a ticket dispenser fail to spit out a ticket--  that I have even taken the time to write to you to report exceptional service.  In other words, I’m not a complainer.

Your Pledge to Customers begins with a claim that your "top priority is to provide transportation that gets you to your destination safely, comfortably and on time."  I felt threatened by an employee's behavior last night, and  was made extremely uncomfortable. I will explain, but before that, I quote the next sentence in your pledge, where it says "...anticipated deman d so as to provide a seat for every customer and  conductors will enforce rules to maximize seat availability."  That is the part the employee in my unfortunate experience will use in his defense. I will explain why it is no defense to him at all.

It is giving me no pleasure to spend my evening commute to write a complaint. But because, as an organization, you have earned my trust and respect, I believe you really do want to hear about my being treated menacingly today. Conductor Christopher Duffy on the 4:45 pm train to [redacted] acted in a manner that was in violation of the [redacted] Pledge to Customers that was, ironically posted above and behind me as he singled me out for loud and public humiliation. His verbal assault on me was irrational, his finger pointing toward another woman was inexplicable, and I felt threatened by the severe anger and unreasonableness on display in Mr. Duffy.  I am afraid it will happen again, to me or to others, and you need to know.


Here are the facts.  I got on in [redacted] and took a seat in the second car from the front, my back to the door. As you know, this is a quad of seats, facing each other, and in my location I faced row upon row of other commuters. These seats are uncomfortable if all four are filled, as knees bump and there are no racks above them for storage. They are not desirable seats, they are always the last to be taken. I know this because I get on in [redacted] and seats are always hard to find.


Opposite me, in one of the two seats facing me was a woman I did not know. I set my bag and my purse on a seat, and took off my coat as the train began moving – next stop [40 minutes away].  When the conductor made the announcement, he was particularly jocular, warning that those in the quiet car must not have contact with the outside world, etc, etc, and saying, too, that people should remove their feet and belongings from seats to make all seating available. I understand that.  As I said, getting on in [redacted] means “good” seats are hard to find. Sure, there are lots of center seats in the three seat sets. Those seats are as undesirable as the remaining seats in a quad after two are filled.  Lots of people stand rather than take any of  those. These cars are from the early 70s. People are bigger today. So middle seats are a very tight fit.and in the  seats like mine, some stranger is facing you, and there isn't room for four people, their knees, and their packages.
You know all this, I'm sure.

When I heard the announcement, I looked at the racks above the seats closest to the end where I was (again, there are no racks above end seats) and I took note that they were full  quite a distance down both sides. I also looked around and saw a clear seat opposite me (the other woman had her purse on the floor), and an available seat across the aisle where two men were seated, one with a backpack on the seat next to him and the other taking one seat and leaving clear the next-to-him-aisle seat (the one where a person would sit knee between  knees with another rider.) It may have been apparent that I was looking for rack space because  this woman facing me, who later introduced herself as [redacted], told me the conductor would make me move my coat from the seat. I  thought that was unlikely, and I left my things where they were.


Shortly thereafter, Mr. Christopher Duffy came into the car, walking quickly, and went up to three young men standing in the center of the car where there are doors. He pointed in the direction where I was (I could see him because I was facing that way) and said “there are seats, go get seats.”  It was an order. It was not a suggestion.  All three walked up the aisle and passed up center seats and even some empty seats where, in sets of two there was only one person and a bag, purse, or backpack on the other seat.  All three passed up the empty aisle seat that faced the man in the quad set across from me. All of them passed on the seat next to that man – a seat with a satchel on it. All three passed up the seat in the middle of the first row of three across the aisle - a take-out drink container was on that seat.  None of them took the empty seat opposite me and next to the other woman. They all continued on to the front car.


Mr. Duffy then hurried back up the car, passing the other passengers who had various things on seats, including the one with the drink sitting on a seat, and came directly up to me, pointed to my things and barked “GET THAT STUFF OFF THE SEAT! I SAID MOVE THAT STUFF.”  It was loud, abrasive and rude. There was no reason to yell.  I had done nothing to single myself out. In fact, the train had left [redacted] eight minutes before I got on in [redacted], and in the car I was in there were seats up and down (I later counted at least 10) being taken up by backpacks, parcels and coats. What was going on?


I said in a polite tone of voice, “There is no rack space for my things.”


He got red in the face, turned around, and with the attention of everyone in the facing half of the car, pointed about six rows down and said loudly “There’s room down there.”

It was above someone’s head, and not easily accessible. The train was moving, I would be stepping over this other rider and her purse, and while it seemed unreasonable, I was willing to comply.


“Would you help me, then?” I asked.  “I’m short, and that space is above other passengers. It’s difficult for me to reach that.”

At first he huffed, and glared. He said “No, you put that stuff up there. Do it now.”


This was when I knew something was more wrong than my having a coat on my seat. It was personal.  I didn’t know why it was personal. I’d never had any run-in with Mr. Duffy or any conductor.

Yes, the "Pledge" says conductors will enforce the rules. That's fine. But it says in the same sentence "to maximize seat availability."  If Mr. Duffy were maximizing availability, he would also have asked the man with the bag on the seat right below the rack space to put his own bag up there. No, this was not about maximizing seat space. This was personal. An ugly  abuse of power.


Again, to be clear, I wasn’t taking up a seat anyone asked for. And ten other seats on the same car had personal belongings on them.  Even with that, there was an empty seat in the set of four on both my side and the opposite side at the front end of this car. The next stop would be in 40 minutes, no new passengers would get on until then, and at that stop many people get off. Seats would be available. Nothing about Mr. Duffy's abrasive confrontation made sense.


Mr Duffy is a large man. I am a small woman. Mr. Duffy is much younger than I am. He was wearing a uniform and asserting his authority in tones that sounded menacing to me, and my gut reaction was fear.  I was afraid of him. Would he confiscate my commuter pass? Could he? How could I get to my job if he did that? I felt vulnerable and threatened and I knew I'd done nothing unusual to bring this attention upon myself. I also knew he was singling me out for something he let other people do, that he was obviously very angry. It wasn't rational. That made it all the more frightening.


He then came and took my bag, a very small, light bag with only some papers and a bottle of water in it, and shoved it recklessly in between other people’s things on a rack. I’m glad it didn’t have anything delicate in it.  Then he came back and scooped up my folded coat making it clear he was even more angry than when he started. When took the coat, he also took my purse which was underneath.  I tried to stop him from taking the purse. “Wait a minute. Don’t take…”


He wasn’t listening. Or he didn’t care. He shoved the coat and purse into the rack space ten feet from me.


“That was my purse. I need to keep that near me.” I asked him for it back.

“NO, “ he said, “You get it.” He started walking away.

The woman seated across from me said in a low voice, “Report him. I have. Three times.”


At this point I stood up to him. Literally and figuratively. I stood, all five foot one inch tall, and yelled back, “Hey!”  He kept walking. “Hey, my wallet is in there. I want that back!”

He glared, went and pulled my shoulder bag back down from the rack, and gave it to me.  I asked him his name. “Christopher Duffy” he announced loudly.

“Mr. Duffy, I am going to report this,” I said.

“Go ahead,” he replied.  He pointed at the woman across from me, and said, “She does.” Then he went on through the car and out the other end without asking anyone else to clear a seat.

In the discussion that followed among the passengers sitting around us,  learned the other woman’s name was [redacted], and that she reported being harassed by Christopher Duffy three times.  Some people kept their heads down, others gave me sympathetic glances or nods, others spoke up and voiced amazement and discomfort.


My being singled out appeared to me to be bullying. Furthermore, I see this as discrimination in the workplace based on gender. There are laws against that. The train is Christopher Duffy’s workplace. He was causing discomfort for the other people in his workplace, discomfort that was gender related, and based in power, and the abuse of power. I say that because the two men sitting in two of  the  four seats across the aisle, with  a third seat being taken up by a backpack, were not confronted,  were not asked to clear that seat, were not yelled at and humiliated, and Mr. Duffy didn’t point any fingers at them. The sets of seats were in the same car, the same end of that car, and were occupied in the same configuration. The only difference was gender. Two women on one side, two men on the other.  Ms. [redacted], in that she endured being pointed out for no reason and in front of 40 strangers, is the second victim of harassment in this incidence I have described.

The man across from Ms. [redacted] got off the train in [redacted]. He told us his name was [redacted], and as he left he commented that the conductor would be a union member who would have that protection when called to task for this, but [redacted], described himself as “a union guy and said, “but, I don’t go for that.”  Then he lamented that he had ten more years ahead of him to ride [redacted], that particular train, and unless the railroad does something about this, it will be with Christopher Duffy as one of the conductors.


After [that stop],I went to get my things, as there were lots of empty seats. The middle-aged gentleman seated beneath my things shook his head in bewilderment and stood and  took them down and gave them to me. He spoke in a low voice, leaning in as if afraid the conductor might be near, and said, “I don’t understand. This seat next to me had my things on it.”  He said he was embarrassed to witness how I was treated.

When the train was pulling into [redacted], a young  woman that was lined up waiting for the doors to open, said to Ms. [redacted] and I that she was astonished by the conductor’s rudeness.  She said she thought at first that I must have had some very large luggage, but when she saw him putting my “ tiny litte bag,” and my coat up on the rack she couldn’t make any sense of it.  She said in the ten years she’s ridden this train she has “never seen anything like it.”  She claimed she would be making a call. I hope she did.

I commute weekdays to  work. . I lost an hour of quiet commuting time writing this  account for you. I invested my return commuting time in this, too.  Please let me know that this time was not spent in vain.  While writing this was cathartic in some ways, I want more. I want to make it very clear to you that Mr. Duffy has issues that put your customers at risk.  I am fearful that he will act out again and target me. I am now uncomfortable seeing him come into the car where I am seated. I feel on edge and have my iPhone at the ready, to record any further bullying whether it be directed at me or at [redacted], should I ever see her again, or at some other woman. Ms.[redacted] told me she witnessed him demand that a young woman open her wallet and prove to him that she really didn't have the money that she was short for her fare.  That is illegal search. It's not his place, uniform or not, to do that. But as I understand it, that victim was young, female, and compliant. It appears that Mr. Duffy sees women as weaker and vulnerable and is a bully and he uses  his job as a means to treat them as lesser people.

Harassment is no joke. It is emotionally painful. Your employee hurt me, hurt Ms. [redacted], and yet he wears your uniform. This is a problem. My purpose in writing to you today is to ask you to make it stop. Don’t let Mr. Duffy bully me again, or any other woman. My very real fear is that now that I have become associated with Ms. [redacted], he will continue to pick on me.  What I thought was irrational and random, I now believe was Christopher Duffy’s associating me with Ms. [redacted]. He may have thought I knew her.  No matter, he definitely zeroed in on the set of seats where she sat, and confronted the occupant [me] of the area where she sat.  It definitely was personal. It definitely caused discomfort. It has all the appearances of being gender biased.  I can’t do anything about being a female. You have to do something about Mr. Duffy.

I have provided you with details and in return, I ask that you let me know if this is a concern to you and what will be done to restore my confidence in [redacted] railroad’s commitment to customer service.

Even now, I want to thank Michael in Customer Service with assisting me this morning with the website I am using to submit this complaint. Michael was every bit the professional, he made me feel that I am valued, and he made me laugh. If I had his last name, I'd give it to you.

 
You know, as I re-read it, I'm still angry at Mr. Duffy, but I'm even more angry about the attitude that is coming out in this election year. There are white men (not all- but too many) who think they are better than the rest of us, and while that's always been around, this year it's becoming a Republican theme. Look at the men in congress who at first, refuse to even hear that young woman speak on the issue of birth control. And then there is the voter suppression movement underfoot, trying to keep minorities and poor people from voting.

Oh yeah, I'm mad. And I'm not gonna take it quietly. Why aren't men speaking up, too? None of the candidates has taken a stand against Rush. He was vile. Speak up! There is a movement underway to let sponsors know you disapprove of his hate-speech on the airwaves. Join the movement, contact his sponsors.

If you see a Mr. Duffy character in your workplace or his, bullying someone, for heaven's sake speak up!


Did you think of the word used most often to describe a man has an active and spontaneous sex life?  You know, the guy who has sex with women he isn't involved with emotionally - no commitment. Any words coming to mind for the male equivalent of what some people call a slut?

It was a trick question. The answer is actually two words. Does that help?

Okay, here's the answer. She's a slut and he  "got lucky."

37 comments:

Nyah said...

Allison, I actually want to physically STAND UP and applaud.

As a black woman in the upper echelons of academia in Houston, I often run into ignorance and bullying.

Once I walked into a lecture hall early for a guest talk and the white male professor barely cast his eyes toward me for a second before waving his hand dismissively and growling out "janitor's already been in".

I was in Chanel slacks and a silk blouse- but all he saw was black skin so his mind went from there to "janitor". In 2010! I am still shocked it happened. And when I cleared my throat and informed him the state of his room's janitorial affairs were certainly not my concern- he guffawed, laughed loud and long and seemed to think we were having some type of shared joke.

I am proud of you for standing up, for SPEAKING up.

Anonymous said...

I was in the very first Male/Female Basic Training in Fort McClellan Alabama in 1979. It was so historic that Pres Ford came to our graduation! The whole basic training we were told that YOU are setting the example for women coming next, if this doesn’t work, then that will be on your shoulders to live with. PROVE it to the men and the country that women CAN do everything a man can do, including the military basic training! When we were given the option to do girl push ups or men push up, we ALL choose the mens push ups to prove we could keep up (and sometimes exceed) the men! Let me tell you, there were PLENTY of drill Sergeant’s and other high ups on base that felt women would prove to be too distracting and that women should be separated from the men at all times and tried to sabotage us at every step….

Then it got worse…

1979.
18 years old.
The Army.
Germany, sent out to the field for the first time.
The only woman and 1500 men.
I was the Medic, they were Engineers.
Alone, in the dark being watched, only I didn’t know
Vilseck, Germany after two weeks without a shower, we were allowed to go to Tent city for 2 days.
Much Celebrating. Much Drinking. After showers the partying started.
I was invited.
A cute boy
Fun
free drinks
more drinks
Something wrong….
Room spinning
Dizzy
can’t walk
being carried
pass out
wake up
can’t move
tied up
can’t talk
gag in mouth
voices
someone on me
wet between the legs
laughter
another body on me
tears
another body
all night
over and over again
how many?
Don’t know
too many
over and over again
thrusting
sweaty
pawing
pain
tearing
more laughter
in and out of conscience
how many?
could be twenty
could be a hundred
all ranks
all sizes
all ages
all penises
all thrusting
all sweating
lots of pain
smell of greasy tent
smell of booze
smell of tobacco
smell of man sweat
smell of semen
smell of sex
all thrusting
all groping
all squeezing
all pawing
only one, who when he saw my tears, stopped in his tracks
But he walked out, and another came in to take his place
over and over again
no help
none in sight
all night long
in and out of reality
in and out of dreams
more body’s
more men
more thrusting
how many hours?
finally the sweet release of awareness
awakening
naked
in the showers
bruises and blood everywhere
Pain
oh my God the pain
all consuming pain
my clothing in a pile
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
water is cold
scrub some more
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
scrub
put on uniform
met at door, by commanding Officer
stern words about MY behavior
told if I talked, it would be MY fault
Threatened with prison for “enticing”
handed orders to be transfered
Told to pack my bags
Transportation waiting
Warned again
If you talk, you die
or worse
watching blindly as the trees roll by
curling up inside of me
hiding the pain
hoping the pain will fade
as the bruises do
can’t walk, can’t sit, can’t take a shit
blaming myself
Others have
so why not me?
Guilt
it weighs on a mind
remembering what was said
silence it is my friend
denial
lock the pain away
never talk they said
never talk I did
The pain it became my friend
To this day, it never ends.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous I send you (((((((HUGS)))))))). You must talk.

Anonymous said...

Allison, I'm standing and cheering you too. Good for you.

My first question would be - What the hell was the matter with the men who were sitting around you, watching your abuse take place? All they would have had to do was to face down the bully, stick up for you & he'd back down quickly. Gutless cowards!

comeonpeople said...

Allison,
Hi, O/T but really need to ask. I read Shailey's book yesterday and thought it is full of incfredibly info.
I am kinda stuck on this one dioscrepenciy though. In the narrative section, Shailey writes that on the day of the massage to Sarah, after the massage, Sarah jumped up without help, off the table. She didn't wait for Shailey to leave and was standing there, naked, and did not look pregnant. Then, in the section with the transcripts of interviews with bloggers (Bladecatz I think,) Shailey states that she did NOT see Sarah in a standing position on that day. So, which is it?
I believe Shailey, but this inconsistentcy that was not caught may cause people to question the whole thing. It is a shame it was not caught.

My copy also has a section with repeated pages. I was thinking "didn't I just read this?"
Despite these problems, the info is damning. The emails are great. I sure hope this opens doors to some real investigation into the Palin's. Sounds like the prostitution ring for high up government and corportate decision makers will enable the cover up though. Sick and disgusting, but one can alwys hope for justice.

Anonymous said...

The name Ms. K____ appears once. you might have forgotten to redact it.

Allison said...

7:13 am. Thanks, I'll change it. I do have her permission to use it but I don't want to.

Sarah Palin has a serpent's heart said...

Allison you used a lot of restraint and I applaud you for that. If it had been me Mr. Duffy would be feasting on a knuckle sandwich.

Allison said...

Nyah, its 2012 in technology and 1950 in cultural ways. I hope we fill this thread with eye-openers like yours and Anon. Women know these are true accounts. Thanks for contributing an excellent example.

Allison said...

Anon 5:56 My thoughts, too! Men don't speak up. Even Mrs. K didn't speak up. She sat ON her coat, purse on the floor, eyes facing forward, giving every indication that she had been bullied into compliance. And she works in an attorney's office! Germany in the 1930s isn't so very hard to imagine. We are no better.

Allison said...

Anon 2:58 You have taken up permanent residence in my heart.

Allison said...

Good morning ComeOnPeople! That was something I pointed out to Shailey, and like you said, my concern was that she not give easy opportunities for dismissing her as untruthful. She responded via email, but I'll ask her to post here to answer you directly. I'm keeping our email exchanges confidential.

There were a few things that looked to be slightly different from earlier comments, and when I caught them I asked. In the end, it's Shailey's story, and she can tell you how these things fit. Not all my suggestions made it into the book nor should they. It's not my story. The other two editors made contributions I didn't see until the final version came out, and there are some really good parts I'm reading for the first time along with you.

One of the other things I caught was that on Shay's blog she once said Todd Palin always paid her. But in the book we find he stopped paying for his own sexual visits. I asked about that. She said that she considered the monthly deposits as payment.

Anyway, I will ask Shay to respond. I agree with you, it's important and goes to credibility. She is, in my opinion, being completely honest. We just need better translations in some parts.

THANKS for bringing this up!

comeonpeople said...

Thanks Allison,
I posted a question on Shailey's blog as well.
It really is a damning good book. What does it take to to expose the Palins? I guess McCain needs to die and then people will feel less inclined to protect him??

Anonymous said...

Allison, why does Shailey put her Levi encounter in the 2007 section of the book, when she initially said summer/fall 08 and more recently winter 08/09?

Combined with the contradictory info about Sarah's massage, this may hurt her in some people's eyes, despite having written a believable book.

Allison said...

Anon 10:23 I don't know the answer. When I saw the drafts the Levi part wasn't even mentioned. I told Shay that she should put it in because us Truthers want to know. Her first drafts were sticking strictly to Todd and not going into other things. Im happy to see this final version includes topics I suggested such as sharing a bit of her spiritual journey, too. Anyway, the Levi story wasn't in front of me until I started reading my copy of the book. Has the same question. As you but I haven't asked her yet. My job is getting on the way - ha!

betsy s said...

It's Sandra Fluke.

Anonymous said...

Why do people who write books about the Palins have significant timeline problems and contradict themselves in big ways?

Anonymous said...

Allison, thanks for responding. I was really disconcerted to read that part in that section, especially because of her recent statements about that encounter being in late 08 or early Jan 09. There's also a couple other things that raise my eyebrows, only one being big.

I'm trying not to let it alter my opinion of her or the book, as she's relying on in the moment responses and personal memory. There's just 3 different time frames now for the Levi story.

Anonymous said...

"I was in the very first Male/Female Basic Training in Fort McClellan Alabama in 1979."

I also trained at Ft. McClellan in '77. I was one of the last women to belong to a combat unit before the laws changed. In reality, nothing changed except my MOS on paper. I continued training with the combat unit.

Rapes were an everyday experience even inside the base. I was assigned two "protectors" to escort me everywhere. I needed protection from my protectors.

Allison said...

Thank you Betsy S. Noted and corrected. That was important.

Allison said...

Anon 1:15 and Anon 2:58 Your experience in our military makes me so ashamed. In my head I hear Sarah Palin calling all our military men and women "patriots" and "heroes" while never saying anything about the hometown friend of the Palins Jeremy Morlock and his murdering in uniform. Then, I remember Cindy McCain smugly saying "I've ALWAYS been proud of MY country," as if not being proud of the sins of our politicians and people in uniform don't count. When women with national platforms don't care about other women, don't care if you were raped, don't care about Todd Palin's sex trafficking, don't care about things that are horrific, it damages this country more than it would to own up to these things. Thank you for speaking up.

If the two of you want to correspond with each other (someone who has been there, too), and you both send me an email at thepalinplace@gmail.com, I will be glad to help. With permission from both of you I'll give you each the other's information. No pressure, just an offer.

nswfm said...

From the artist's twitter page:
@williambanzai7

Visual Combat: Destroy the image and you will break the enemy. [As seen daily on Zero Hedge, Keiser Financial War Reports and The Village Voice Online]

A visual cat in a city of rats · http://williambanzai7.blogspot.com


http://www.flickr.com/photos/expd/6932323791/in/photostream/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/expd/6799364020/in/photostream/

...and from his twitter feed:
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=851104&l=dd6c0f4b81&id=268707249832156

Anonymous said...

Allison, I think the one-word answer to your question is "stud," who "gets lucky." Both expressions imply positive, even congratulatory, reactions to their sexual encounters, while names for female sexual experiences are viewed negatively. As Melissa Harris-Perry said yesterday on Rev. Al's show: "What if Ms. Fluke was a slut? (and I'm not saying that she is)," would she then not be entitled to speak out? Women's health needs are critical to every woman in any walk of life or lifestyle. The current discourse on contraception and women's health issues is especially disconcerting to those of us who participated in the second wave of feminism and thought we had won these battles already. It all has a "through the Looking Glass" feel.

~physicsmom

Anonymous said...

To the woman who served in the military and experienced a horrific experience, hugs. I am glad you shared that story for all of us. It is still the truth of today's world. But I do hope we are improving even if change is slow.

Second I want to respond to Shailey's book. Fact checkers and people who are die hard factual people will have a hard time with her book. But the two points I see here seem trivial to me. First the retort about in the narrartive she states she peaked at Sarah and saw her in the nude does not negate the fact that Shailey gave her a massage and that Sarah has publicly admitted to it. It also does not negate the fact that Sarah filled out her forms denying pregnancy and that Shailey felt her stomach and did not feel Sarah was pregnant. So in the grand scheme of things it does not change anything. Also in the interview section of thebook Shailey does state she could not say certain things before her court date, and many times onher blog she has said she wants to put it in her book. I beleive she interviewed with Bladecatz before her court date. I also beleive she remembered things once she really worked on the book.

The second problem of the Levi and Todd behavior is not a crisis either. There could have been more than one altercation. Perhaps the email in the Palin dump is talking about a separate encounter. Perhaps Shailey's memory is not perfect and she did the best she could to fit it into the book. What we do know is that Todd has bad behavior and her book adds to that fact not detract.

Trigtruthers you need to stick together. If you guys throw each other under the bus no one will beleive anything you have to say.

Jean said...

This blog is so important for the cause of women. Women and men who are sick of the misogynistic attitude of these fearful men, must point it out and use social media to bring it to the attention of the world and the advertisers who will cave to their customers.
Beck is gone from Fox because of the power of social media.
Limbaugh is apologizing because of the pressure put on his advertisers leaving after an onslaught of social media comments directly sent to their twitter accounts.
Monday, the occupylimbaugh will begin!
Get on twitter and follow those who stand up for women.
Use your voice to help get rid of the right wing hate radio.
Bain (Romney) owns part of Clear Channel which sponsors Limbaugh.
Thank you for this blog Allison.
You are a strong woman with a good heart.
@Jeanabella

Anonymous said...

I loved your letter. Good luck. I think it's time that people file complaints about unacceptable behavior.

WIth regard to politics and the treatment of women, I read a comment on IM that Wisconsin now has a piece of legislation in process that would make single parenthood "child abuse." I don't know how much crazier these people are going to get. But we women must start voicing our opposition!

shaytripp said...

Q. I am kinda stuck on this one dioscrepenciy though. In the narrative section, Shailey writes that on the day of the massage to Sarah, after the massage, Sarah jumped up without help, off the table. She didn't wait for Shailey to leave and was standing there, naked, and did not look pregnant. Then, in the section with the transcripts of interviews with bloggers (Bladecatz I think,) Shailey states that she did NOT see Sarah in a standing position on that day. So, which is it?
I believe Shailey, but this inconsistentcy that was not caught may cause people to question the whole thing. It is a shame it was not caught.

A.The answer is really simple and every person that edited the book caught it. It wa snot an accident I left it in. First I am putting it all out there. Second when I did those early interviews I wa snot sure what I could talk about openly and I als still wasn;t getting the significance of the whole massage thing. I really thought it was bizarre people were so concerened about it. Anyway later when I did remember more about the massage and discussed with my lawyers everyone thought it best to stay away from any details like that. However when I really got into the hear of my book I had to make a choice. I did not lie early on but refrained from talking about it. But inmy book I felt more free, I did not have to worry about court anymore and I decided to put it all out there. But because I am well aware of what I had said in earlier interviews I decided to put that out there too.

shaytripp said...

Q/Comment:
One of the other things I caught was that on Shay's blog she once said Todd Palin always paid her. But in the book we find he stopped paying for his own sexual visits. I asked about that. She said that she considered the monthly deposits as payment.

A: Yes Allison and someone else caught this too. At the time the original question was aksed I did in the back of my mond think well he did deposit money, and considered it as a way he paid me. But while writing thebook and I was owning up to things he did to me, this stuck out. He freakin didn't pay me.

shaytripp said...

Q. Allison, why does Shailey put her Levi encounter in the 2007 section of the book, when she initially said summer/fall 08 and more recently winter 08/09?

Combined with the contradictory info about Sarah's massage, this may hurt her in some people's eyes, despite having written a believable book.

A. Vickie advised me not to even put it in the book or talk about it at the end of the book. We were never 100% positive of when it happened, pnly that we knew it did happen. More specifically I knew it happened and remembered it but didn't know what day or exact time. I am sure it was before Bristol had a baby. I did the best I could. Perhaps Levi and Todd had more than one explosive encounter??Anyway I wrote about what I could as accuarately as I was able to.

shaytripp said...

Allsion,
I don't want to take up too much space on your blog. I am glad you shared this letter and the experience of the conductor on here and so openly. In someways we as women have regressed and our grandmother's not so happy with us. We do have to speak up and stand up for ourselves. In some reagrds I blame television for this backwards step for us as women. You are writing about very important topics for all of us. Stay on it.

shaytripp said...

Allsion,
I don't want to take up too much space on your blog. I am glad you shared this letter and the experience of the conductor on here and so openly. In someways we as women have regressed and our grandmother's not so happy with us. We do have to speak up and stand up for ourselves. In some reagrds I blame television for this backwards step for us as women. You are writing about very important topics for all of us. Stay on it.

Anonymous said...

Q. I am kinda stuck on this one dioscrepenciy though. In the narrative section, Shailey writes that on the day of the massage to Sarah, after the massage, Sarah jumped up without help, off the table. She didn't wait for Shailey to leave and was standing there, naked, and did not look pregnant. Then, in the section with the transcripts of interviews with bloggers (Bladecatz I think,) Shailey states that she did NOT see Sarah in a standing position on that day. So, which is it?
I believe Shailey, but this inconsistentcy that was not caught may cause people to question the whole thing. It is a shame it was not caught.

A.The answer is really simple and every person that edited the book caught it. It wa snot an accident I left it in. First I am putting it all out there. Second when I did those early interviews I wa snot sure what I could talk about openly and I als still wasn;t getting the significance of the whole massage thing. I really thought it was bizarre people were so concerened about it. Anyway later when I did remember more about the massage and discussed with my lawyers everyone thought it best to stay away from any details like that. However when I really got into the hear of my book I had to make a choice. I did not lie early on but refrained from talking about it. But inmy book I felt more free, I did not have to worry about court anymore and I decided to put it all out there. But because I am well aware of what I had said in earlier interviews I decided to put that out there too.

March 5, 2012 10:15 AM

Sorry, not really following your logic at all with this.

Anonymous said...

"Sorry, not really following your logic at all with this"

Then don't follow it at all as we've already established that you're easily confused. Go listen to Sarah describe the wild ride and get back to us with the logic on that.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this letter. I feel sick to my stomach about what happened on that train. I'm a Canadian who has been paying close attention to American politics for several years. I remember as a teen being shocked by the election of Ronald Reagan. I wanted to know who he was and how it could happen. I'm glad I couldn't foresee the smug hate mongering that is the norm amongst a significant (I didn't say majority) number of Republicans today. A civil society is worth working for, but it takes regular diligence and the courage to speak out against the slightest affronts to individual dignity. And I'm not talking about "political correctness" that gets ridiculously suppressive of our right to laugh at ourselves and each other. I'm talking about real bullying, the kind you know is a potential threat, not jocular remarks that remind us all of our common humanity.
I'm glad you listened to your gut, Allison. It's a good reminder.

Allison said...

This may be my favorite thread of comments since inception (completing 5 months). Serious sharing and heartfelt encouragement and empathy. I'm feeling blessed.

Two things more - thanks to Shay for taking time to answer questions. She doesn't have to do that and it takes time. So thanks again.

Also, the conductor Mr Duffy was very quiet on the Friday commute home. I do believe he knew of my long and detailed compllaint. Have not seen him this week. My favorite explanation for that would be that he's been suspended without pay. Long enough for his behavior to be changed for good. No email back from the railroad yet. Customer service said it could be up to two weeks even though it would be read that day. I'm fine with that . Thanks for the outpouring of support. If you ever need to similarly vent, this is the place.

Anonymous said...

Allison: If nothing happens to the conductor, you can threaten with the ACLU, I believe. Discrimination based on gender is illegal.

Anon @ 2:58: O.M.G.! PLEASE DO get help, and START TALKING! {{{HUGGGZZZ}}}

(I recently read an article about just that issue :(

http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2011/dec/09/rape-us-military )

Anonymous said...

Thanks for writing this
David c