The Samovar

Double standards
October 6, 2007, 11:19 pm
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , , , , ,

The BBC reports:

Schoolchildren in the US state of Ohio were left bemused after images of nude women were shown in a politician’s lecture on the legislative process.

State representative Matthew Barrett was giving a computerised presentation at Norwalk High School when the images flashed up on the screen.

He said he had no idea where the images came from, adding that he took them down after a few seconds.

Mr Barrett was “embarrassed and apologetic”, police said.

“I believe this was an unfortunate and unintended incident,” Superintendent Wayne Babcanec told local media.

All fairly innocent no doubt. Maybe the guy had been downloading this porn and saving it on his USB stick, maybe not, who really cares? So far, so meh. But, compare with the case of Julie Amero:

On October 19, 2004 Julie Amero was substituting for a seventh-grade language class at Kelly Middle School in Norwich, Connecticut. The teacher’s computer was accessed by pupils while the regular teacher, Matthew Napp, was out of the room. When Julie took charge, the computer started showing pornographic images.

On January 5, 2007 Amero was convicted in Norwich Superior Court on four counts of risk of injury to a minor, or impairing the morals of a child. Her sentencing was delayed four times after her conviction, with both the prosecution and judge not satisfied that all aspects of the case had been assessed.[1] The felony charges for which she was originally convicted carry a maximum prison sentence of 40 years.

A detailed look at the facts of the case strongly suggest – as does common sense – that it is much less likely that Amero was intentionally downloading porn than Barrett. But, whereas in the case of Barrett police said “I believe this was an unfortunate and unintended incident”, Amero has been going through the courts for three years, trying to save herself from a possible 40 years in jail.

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