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Are We Experiencing an Epidemic of Vicarious Violence? PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Wednesday, 11 June 2014 09:14
Tired of Frivolous Dehumanization? 4 Ways to Put Dignity Back in Your Family’s Day

We pay large amounts of money to watch people kill one another on giant movie theater screens.

Video games allow for players to live a psychopathic life of crime.

America’s favorite sport, football, clearly rewards brutality.

“Our increasing tolerance of, and lust for, vicarious violence is frightening,” says scholar L. Craig Williams, author of “The Fourth Army,” (www.lcraigwilliams.com).

The upward trajectory of vicarious violence is matched by the increasing amounts of dehumanizing media we’re exposed to: “Reality television” turns supposed real-life personal heartbreak and tragedy into entertainment. The internet is casually rife with porn and horrific imagery.

“It’s no surprise we’re seeing more and more mass shootings at schools and other public venues, more incidents of road rage, and even more heinous crimes committed by children,” Williams says. “When we’re inured to violence and we lose our appreciation for the value of every human life, society can become terribly cruel, even sadistic.”

How can you shield yourself and your family from dehumanizing media?

•  Don’t give your children “junk food” media. You wouldn’t let your kids eat a candy bar with Yoo-hoo for breakfast; pizza for lunch and a plate of cheese fries for dinner. Discourage junk media by encouraging stimulating discussions and edifying reading material at an early age. Children are full of curiosity and wonder; don’t be afraid to engage with them on their questions about life, even if you don’t have all the answers.

•  Already addicted to vicarious violence? Exercise your empathy. Are you captivated by clownishly aggressive young women having meltdowns on TV? Rather than taking petty pleasure with a palpable dash of superiority in witnessing that footage, you might instead wonder why you are supporting the exploitation of broken, emotionally immature people. That young woman could be your daughter, sister, friend, coworker, etc. who forever regrets her misguided choices while a young person.

•  Read a book! Focusing on anything for an extended period of time is inherently pleasurable, and reading a book – but please not a murder mystery – provides the kind of engagement that is far more satisfying than vicarious violence. If it has been awhile since you’ve read a book, you’ll feel just as good as you do when you exercise and eat right. Reading is good for you. Fiction is shown to increase empathy among readers, and nonfiction books broaden your understanding of how the world works.

•  Engage with the people around you. One way vicarious violence works is by a disassociation with the person being abused. This disassociation is probably being amplified by seeing people as two-dimensional profiles online – more like vague entities than human beings. Take time to renew and strengthen relationships. Pay attention to your family members; understand your neighbor may have had a rough day – heck, maybe the checkout girl at the store could use a smile and a kind word. Isn’t life more interesting when you’re engaged with what and who is around you?

About L. Craig Williams

L. Craig Williams holds a bachelor's degree in European History and a Juris Doctor, specializing in international law. He has written extensively about human resources and individual leadership. Williams has been an International Fellow of Columbia University and has published articles on comparative law and was a director of the German-American Law Association for many years. He has lived in Germany, France and England and makes his home in New York.

 
Iowa Supreme Court Opinions June 6, 2014 PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Iowa Judicial Branch   
Friday, 06 June 2014 13:23
Notice: The opinions posted on this site are slip opinions only. Under the Rules of Appellate Procedure a party has a limited number of days to request a rehearing after the filing of an opinion. Also, all slip opinions are subject to modification or correction by the court. Therefore, opinions on this site are not to be considered the final decisions of the court. The official published opinions of the Iowa Supreme Court are those published in the North Western Reporter published by West Group.

Opinions released before April 2006 and available in the archives are posted in Word format. Opinions released after April 2006 are posted to the website in PDF (Portable Document Format).   Note: To open a PDF you must have the free Acrobat Reader installed. PDF format preserves the original appearance of a document without requiring you to possess the software that created that document. For more information about PDF read: Using the Adobe Reader.

For your convenience, the Judicial Branch offers a free e-mail notification service for Supreme Court opinions, Court of Appeals opinions, press releases and orders. To subscribe, click here.

NOTE: Copies of these opinions may be obtained from the Clerk of the Supreme Court, Judicial Branch Building, 1111 East Court Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50319, for a fee of fifty cents per page.

No. 12–0800

IN THE MATTER OF THE ESTATE OF GLEN A. WATERMAN, Deceased JINGLES TI-OKAY WATERMAN

No. 12–2120

CHRISTOPHER J. GODFREY vs. STATE OF IOWA; TERRY BRANSTAD, Governor of the State of Iowa, Individually and in His Official Capacity; KIMBERLY REYNOLDS, Lieutenant Governor of the State of Iowa, Individually and in Her Official Capacity; JEFF BOEYINK, Chief of Staff to the Governor of the State of Iowa, Individually and in His Official Capacity; BRENNA FINDLEY, Legal Counsel to the Governor of the State of Iowa

No. 12–2310

IN THE INTEREST OF A.J.M., Minor Child. STATE OF IOWA

 
Loebsack Representative to Hold Office Hours in Clinton County PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Vonnie Hampel   
Friday, 06 June 2014 09:15

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Dave Loebsack will have a member of his staff in Clinton County for open office hours. Henry Marquard, Loebsack’s District Representative, will be at the following locations. Marquard will be on hand to work with individuals who are having difficulty with a government agency, have suggestions for Dave, or would just like to share their concerns. Members of the public are invited to attend. Marquard holds regular office hours throughout Eastern Iowa.

If residents are unable to attend but have a concern to share with the Congressman, please call our district office toll-free at 1-866-914-IOWA (4692)

Marquard’s schedule is as follows.

Tuesday, June 10

Camanche City Hall

917 3rd St.

9:00 – 10:00 AM

 

Clinton City Hall

611 S. 3rd St.

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

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Braley Applauds Dubuque Man’s Efforts to Raise Awareness of Foster Care Shortage, Submits Congratulations in Congressional Record PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Kirsten Hartman   
Thursday, 05 June 2014 14:16

Congressman praises Chris Barnett’s ‘Walk Across Iowa’

Washington, D.C. – Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today congratulated Chris Barnett of Dubuque on successfully completing his ‘Walk Across Iowa’ to raise awareness of the need for foster families in the state of Iowa. Braley submitted official remarks into the Congressional Record in commendation of Barnett.

“All Iowa children deserve to grow up in loving homes, and I’m proud of Chris for taking on mother nature, blisters, and 875 miles to spread this important message across Iowa,” Braley said. “It’s truly inspiring to see the lengths Chris is willing to go to increase awareness of this issue and inspire Iowans to provide loving foster homes to children, and I sincerely congratulate him on this extraordinary accomplishment.”

Barnett, a former foster child himself, began his walk on Saturday, May 3rd in Dubuque, walked to Davenport, and then across the state to Council Bluffs and back to Dubuque in hopes of inspiring Iowans to become foster families. He completed his journey on May 31. Chris and his wife have fostered more than 30 children since they first became foster parents in 2003.

A copy of Braley’s entry into the Congressional Record is available online HERE.

Braley has been a consistent advocate for Iowa foster and adoptive families. Last October, Braley introduced the Children in Families First Act which helps streamline the adoption process by removing unnecessary bureaucratic barriers to international adoptions.

In 2012, Braley introduced the Making Adoption Affordable Act to make the adoption tax credit permanent. The Braley effort was successful, and now the adoption tax credit is permanent law.

This year Braley has been advocating for a Dubuque family as they battle the Democratic Republic of the Congo for the rights to their legally adopted children.

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Deputy Promotion PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Pamela Bennett   
Wednesday, 04 June 2014 14:17
On Monday, June 9, 2014 at 9:00 a.m., the Scott County Sheriff’s Office will hold a promotional ceremony on the second floor of the Scott County Courthouse in the Sheriff’s Administration Conference room. Deputy Ryan Lage will be promoted to the rank of sergeant. Deputy Lage served in the United States Air Force from 1995 to 2000. He began his career with the Sheriff’s Office as a correctional officer in the Scott County Jail from 2000 to 2005, where he was promoted to the rank of jail sergeant and has been a Scott County deputy sheriff from 2005 to present. Deputy Lage is a Standardized Field Sobriety Test instructor and a former instructor in ASP Baton, pepper spray and defensive tactics. Ryan and his wife have 2 children and reside in Eldridge.

 
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