From time to time, I entertain the thought of pursuing a Ph.D. Sometimes I think of pursuing that particular degree in American Literature, focusing on John Steinbeck as catalyst of social reform, citing Of Mice and Men and The Grapes of Wrath, and possibly excerpts from the screenplay of Viva Zapata. (Steinbeck wrote that, too.)
I also think about a Doctorate in Theatre History, possibly focusing on Teatro Campesino and pushing forward the idea that if you can’t personally strike your own set, you don’t need to use it. (I came to this conclusion after a particularly grim evening when my entire cast and production team blazed out of the theatre to see a play at another theatre, leaving me to heave six benches and five flats backstage. There is no adjective or metaphor to define how angry I was at these people.)
The area of study that has the most appeal for me is the Composition and Rhetoric. I like that the definition of Rhetoric includes “Blather” and “Palaver”. I can certainly get behind that. Trust me, I intend to use my powers for good with the occasional foray into the outer edges of evil, only if they really deserve it.
Speaking of deserved evil, (Well, maybe not evil, but definitely some series frowning.) I would like to talk about the rhetoric involved in the Brock Turner case.
For those of you who are not familiar with this case, ( I realize that not everyone hovers over the news feeds, poised to spring.)
Brock Turner is the former Stanford swimmer who was recently found guilty on three felony sexual assault charges. He was caught in the act of assaulting an unconscious woman after an ON CAMPUS fraternity party.
He was sentenced to six months in prison.
This is his punishment.
Oh, and he won’t eligible to participate in the 2016 Olympics.
There has been considerable backlash over the sentencing. This is not a surprise. What surprises me is that there are several vocalizations that his sentence is too harsh.
Both the Victim and the Father of the Criminal have had their statements published.
On the grounds that the contents may seriously warp your day and harsh your mellow, I am providing links. Here is her statement and information on the case. https://www.buzzfeed.com/katiejmbaker/heres-the-powerful-letter-the-stanford-victim-read-to-her-ra?utm_term=.nmob2Q46RN#.pumo5KDm1x
Essentially it outlines how badly this young woman was treated both before, during and after her assault. Remember this was an ON CAMPUS party. Seriously.
Now to add indignity to the insultingly short sentence that Turner received, this Stanford student’s father wrote what I think is an incendiary piece of rhetoric, which means this man’s blather and palaver makes me want to set something on fire.
Here is the link to an article that includes the letter.http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2016/06/05/brock_turner_s_dad_s_defense_proves_why_his_victim_had_to_write_her_letter.html
So I guess we need to feel sorry for Brock Turner because he lived a blameless life and enjoyed his food before he went to a party, got drunk and severely assaulted a young woman.
Because it was only “20 minutes of action” in the life of an elite athlete whose life is now permanently altered.
Because that explains it.