Personality of Coronavirus

I am surprised at how compliant everyone has been with wearing a mask. It is mandatory within stores and public buildings, but it is just as common to see people wearing masks outside exercising. In Texas, even with the heat in the 100’s, people are continuing to wear masks outdoors, sweating from fear of the Coronavirus.

I think it would be interesting to do a psychological study of people based on how much they are masking themselves. As concern for the Coronavirus has continued, I’ve noticed people covering up their faces more and more. In retail environments where there have been the most people, I have seen people so covered up you cannot even see their face! How can the police even identify a thief anymore? Women are seen wearing large sunglasses and masks so that only their foreheads are left uncovered. Men wear bandanas that cover up the entire bottom half of their face below their eyes. Whereas in most cases it is difficult to implement any kind of policy, somehow wearing a mask is not even questioned. There are very few people who argue with it. How many of these are wearing a mask for prevention reasons and how many are wearing it because of psychological needs for safety, security, love, and belonging?

I have seen people who have their entire face covered. Is this a sign of care and security that the person is trying to create for themselves? Does the amount of coverage of the face signify fulfilling a need of self-love and way of conquering pain in their life, like trying to swaddle themselves in a baby blanket? Or maybe it is coverage from the fear of contracting the virus built up from all the hype and coverage of media, rather than the virus itself.

Perhaps for some, it is a way to physically look better or a means to lose weight. Sweating under a mask burns off calories on an entirely different area of the body than is typical. Similarly, with weight loss, how is it that a person can breathe who is exercising with their mouth and nose covered? I had a gym membership and it was manageable to walk on a treadmill at a slow speed with a mask on. However, any faster cardio activity was nearly impossible as the mask restrained breathing and caused my face to become really hot. Do people who workout intensely masked think it will strengthen their lungs by restraining their air? For those who are self-conscious about the bottom half of their face, it provides a chance to keep it hidden, but for most of us, we need a full supply of air. Likewise, it is a mystery to me how cyclists are able to ride their bikes completely masked. Yet many of them are cycling miles around the lake at the same speed as normal. How many of the walkers and runners with dogs on a leash do not care that the Coronavirus can be contracted to their pet? Where are the pet masks? Wouldn’t it make more sense if both pet and owner wore a mask or didn’t?

Living in a self-expressive era, people are eager to express themselves and show their personality and style. For those who care to express themselves by mask, wearing a unique mask is a way to do this. The number of styles I have seen have ranged from glitter and bling, to exaggerated mouths on the mask, patriotic versions, cartoons, and plenty of different colors and patterns. Those who love to sew, were quick to see the Coronavirus as an opportunity to show their skills. Handmade masks were made and distributed to friends and family members. Many still wear the basic disposable, blue and white mask. Bandanas also have been a quick makeshift for a mask, easily made by folding a bandana into thirds and popping hair bands on each end.

Very few people are actually practicing social distancing with 6 feet of space, but wearing a mask is followed by nearly the entire population and has become a trend. Has self-expression and the trend for fashion tied in with keywords like “social distancing” created a fad to drive compliancy?

Health and self-expression are always going to be top-sellers when it comes to the general public. Having an ailment or a special condition, makes you a commodity. We see this with parents and their children. “My child has ADHD”, or whatever other symptom, suddenly makes the child “special” and the parents have a topic to talk about. Topics revolve around the problem with their child, rather than emphasizing what the child excels in. This is a way parents can converse with one another encountering less feeling of inadequacy. Empathy can be found with a health issue, whereas bragging on talent might create adversity with another parent. The same type of approach applies to adult-to-adult conversation. Adults would rather discuss their woes rather than talk about what is uplifting. How many older people talk about their pains, medications and doctors visits when it would be more pleasant to hear about their life experiences. It creates a concern for self, which results in compassion from the other person. With the Coronavirus everyone gets a special band-aid pasted on their face.

It is understandable that vulnerable populations such as the elderly might have a greater fear of catching the Coronavirus. One would think that children would be of a higher concern as well. In retail store environments, I have heard mothers question why their children must wear a mask or if an exception can be made. Events and kids meals might make exceptions for kids, but with smaller lungs and little bodies, it would seem obvious they would fall into the high concern bracket. Psychologically is it that the parent feels neglected of care and must nurture themselves by wearing a mask while giving the child the benefit of freedom? The parent positions him or herself as the one who needs care above the child, when it should be both.

With the rich and famous, masking opens up more opportunities to be in public and not be identified. For those aspiring to be rich and famous, they too can dress differently and go around town in mask for a different experience. It is a chance for the affluent to be fashionable and show their sense of fashion by affording specialized masks to coordinate with their outfits. An article was posted about the Queen of England who wears a mask that matches her daily wardrobe of brightly colored suits. I also saw a young woman in downtown Dallas who had a mask made of the exact material of her outfit.  

While some cultures such as Islam require head coverings, covering the face is new for most Western cultures. Will this develop a greater appreciation for our mouths? An uncovered mouth is needed for sound and volume. Many hard of hearing must be affected by not being able to hear people who have mouth coverings on. It may create a new vision for how we see people, noticing the person rather than the external qualities. The mouth is also used for reading facial expressions. A person can take a vacation from smiling and no one will even know. I’ve even seen people stick their tongue out at me from behind their mask. And as for revenue from foundation makeup and lipstick, I would imagine sales are down. Personally, I prefer to be mask-free as much as possible, but follow policies where wearing a mask is required.

Wearing a mask is the perfect prelude to a reformation of etiquette in our culture. After being in timeout with the Coronavirus, with shelter in place, we were able to have a greater appreciation for our freedom and ability to interact with one another. Covering the mouth and nose, can visually signify halting gossip and nosiness, which is also indicative of rudeness. When restrictions were lifted for public shopping, it was a renewed experience of respectfulness of distance and the exclusiveness of having space while shopping. People were obedient to this and cautious of infecting others by following social distancing procedures. Now that most places have opened up, there seems to be not much difference as everyday life returns to normal. When we take our masks off, we will see other people’s faces again. What it would be like to remove the band-aids over our mouths and noses yielding a healed and healthy society of people. Furthermore, what if being mask-free meant a world culture safe from the Coronavirus, and one with a greater respectfulness for each other in our interactions and speech.  

Note: It is noted that the Coronavirus is real and has caused many deaths worldwide. This article is written from another perspective hoping to present other points such as how well marketed the Coronavirus has been with precautions followed seamlessly by the majority of the population because of the scare. A lack of respectfulness in today’s culture is equally contagious and deadly, which is a natural segue to this current worldwide concern.


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The Signs of Communication

With communication today, two extremities of communication exist: self-expression and speaking with discretion. Self-expression, or speaking openly on any topic without much censorship or use of etiquette, is common by most of the population. The second, opposite extreme, is speaking with discretion and saying very little in order to preserve one’s reputation. This is more typical of professionals and anyone of class, although it may not necessarily always the case. How are either of these improving the way we communicate? How are both of these skewing the line of civilized communication?

Self-Expression
The first extreme of communication is self-expression which has become an acceptable way to communicate today for most Americans. Unlike other countries, the United States does not have laws against hate speech. What a person says has no societal limitations in most settings. With this increase in self-expression, and decrease in societal parameters for civilized speech, the majority of the population feels they can say whatever they want—and for the most part they do. There is little thought put into what is said. Rather than considering how what is communicated might hurt or offend another, the priority is placed on voicing opinions without discretion, using uncivilized expressions, and being heard.

In the past, social standards influenced improper communication. In Roman and Greek cultures, speaking was seen as an art which had to be mastered before a person was given the right to speak on a topic. It could take years to master becoming an orator. The aspiring speaker had to first learn the art by studying the writings of philosophers, mastering grammar, and learning how to speak. In more modern times, within the United States, social standards set the acceptability of civilized speech and good etiquette. Even a minor comment could eliminate a person from social circles. Differences of opinion could certainly make for a worthy topic of discussion. However, being cordial was expected at a minimum for more vivacious discussions which could lead to arguments. It was possible for people to be accepted, although they might have differing opinions, and still be valued and respected with human dignity.

Within the last 50 years, there has been a shift to self-expression. The ability to say whatever is on a person’s mind is acceptable whether in person or online. There are hardly any limits to what a person may speak about. Open communication is seen as a way to provide transparency and the “honest story” of any person or situation. While this has many benefits, it crosses a line when dignity is stepped upon and boundaries are crossed. Consideration is necessary before speaking with regards to whom a person is talking to, if the topic is appropriate, and the choice of respectful words which are said for a pleasant conversation. Talking about anything can be very damaging. In fact, much of what people talk about has veered away from “ideas” and “intellectual topics”. Instead, what is more common is digressive speech such as gossip or speaking of topics which are inappropriate, very personal or sensitive in nature, or comments which might advertise the negative rather than focus on the positive. There is no preservation of the human dignity of a person. What needs to be said, is what is said, regardless of how it may hurt or offend the other person.

On social networks, a simple post can flare up into a war of replies within seconds. This trolling is often classified inaccurately as a “discussion” and “freedom of speech”. It would be better described as intolerance for a different view which triggers others chiming in to counter the post with an escalating degree of negativity and close-mindedness. These can occur even on simple posts that may not have any intent to attract opinions, but which result in a soapbox of negative, heated, responses. While self-expression allows for openness and problem solving, it can also open the door for adversity. Communication on digressive topics, and intentionally creating unnecessary conflict are examples of unhealthy communication. Speaking about anything without consideration of another person is rude and uncivilized.

The Power of Silence
The other extreme for communication is to choose to say very little or to remain silent. By speaking cautiously a person is more likely to preserve their good reputation. It also provides safety, by finding no partiality to any party or issue. The person remains politically correct by withholding an opinion. In many spiritual teachings, silence is perceived as golden. By remaining silent, a person can reflect wisdom. Remaining silent, a person does not reveal what they know or do not know. Likewise, by not speaking, there is less of a chance of speaking in an unintelligent manner, speaking offensively, or divulging information which should not be revealed. Remaining silent is also a way to absorb heated conflict, inappropriate speech, and to buy in time to respond with a more thoughtful response.

There is a time and a place to speak. George Washington said, “If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter”.  While we should speak out rather than remain silent on situations of injustice, on political views or ways that may affect our life, saying less, rather than more can be a way which contributes to civility. Voicing an opinion without consideration, can breed hate more than solve problems. This is where uncivilized speech occurs. In today’s culture, it is more likely that the freedom of speech is taken too far through the self-expression of uncivilized conversation. Self-expression can be the ignition of unnecessary conflict just to express an opinion. When freedom of speech is taken to this extreme, responding with silence can help swing the equilibrium of communication, bringing it back to more peaceful speech and civilized communication. Knowing when to speak and when not to speak is important.

Finding the Balance with Human Dignity and Respect
Some social and professional settings still have standards for communication, although uncivilized speech is more popular. Realizing that there is a place for self-expression while maintaining a standard for civilized communication is the challenge which we face today. Many do not recognize digressive communication. Being desensitized by the current standard, hardly anyone today questions inappropriate speech which is on the tongues of most and found in media and by leaders. If culture continues to accept digressive speech, it is a reflection on our country, acceptability for digression and lack of etiquette, and is an insult to the right to the Freedom of Speech which we have. The First Amendment was created for Americans to speak up for freedom and liberties for all. With an acceptability of hate speech and speaking on digressive topics, society is infected with negativity, hate, unacceptability, intolerance for differences, immaturity, a lack of professionalism, and lack of human dignity. It shows an inability to communicate and interact with others. For a country which prides itself on being a melting pot, this is not congruent. Although not everyone will get along, there needs to be a greater degree of respect for differences whether it is race, belief, lifestyle, ability, economic or any other characteristic. Valuing differences and human life needs a higher tolerance and acceptance. Inequality will always exist, but human dignity needs to be upheld. Since the primary problem of unacceptability stems from inappropriate speech, correcting communication that is off-balance can help set society upright to a culture with a civilized standard.


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Words & Phrases: How To Phrase It

How you speak matters, and so does knowing ‘when to chew it’. The Freedom of Speech does not mean it is acceptable to say just anything. Slander, defamation, and verbal abuse are abuse of the freedom of speech and are even a liability for a civil lawsuit. Knowing how to speak properly makes a difference in employment showing good communication skills. Thinking before you speak gives you a chance to form what you have to say in the most positive and polite manner. This infographic and podcast shares information on how to express what you have to say in a civilized way.

Download the Infographic: How-To Think Before You Speak: Words and Phrases

Are you left tongue tied because of rude speech? Are you wondering how to lick the rudeness? Join Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness as host Cheryl Vaca presents the podcast: Tongue Tied: How To Lick the Rudeness by Using Better Etiquette. Identifying offensive ways of speaking in everyday conversations is a way to improve communication with others. Raise the standard for civilized communication by striving to speak respectfully and with good tact. Be Cultured. Be Kind.

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How-To Phrase It: And You Can Quote Me PODCAST


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How to Say It, Third Edition:
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Tongue Tied: How To Lick the Rudeness by Using Better Etiquette PODCAST

PODCAST SCRIPT

Hi! This is Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness and today is June 24, 2020. Today’s podcast is Tongue Tied and today we’re going to talk about how to lick the rudeness by using better etiquette.

Speaking can really get us in trouble sometimes if we aren’t careful. Using good taste and using good tact is part of civilized communication. There are several types of negative habits that are used when speaking that make conversation unpleasant. There is a good book which we will be discussing later this weekend on June 27 in our online Facebook book club. The book is called 30 Days to Taming Your Tongue, What You Say (and don’t say) Will Improve Your Relationships by author, Deborah Smith Pegues. I encourage everyone to join the discussion—so be sure to RSVP online on the Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness Facebook page. The book goes into 30 different negative ways of speaking that we easily can get caught up in. If you would like to have better conversations, you’ll want to take a look at this book as it identifies communication habits which can be offensive and negative. I hope you will join us!

Assess your Own Tongue
Tongue tied as to where to begin to have more pleasant conversations and wondering how to lick the rudeness? Well, the first step is sticking your tongue out for an assessment! Which ways do you communicate which need some work? If you aren’t sure, spend today or this week noticing how you talk to others. Are you complaining? Do you belittle others when you talk? Whether it is being discouraging by speaking with a downbeat tone, speaking as a know-it-all, lying and speaking mis-truths, using manipulation, or other ways of being rude…there are several ways people speak which are not pleasant to listen to or be around. By identifying these, you can resolve how to change how you speak and see how those you interact with enjoy the conversation more.

Identify the Way Others Speak
The second step for improving rudeness in communication is to identify the way others speak which may not be pleasant. Do you have a friend who uses profanity frequently? It can be harsh to listen to and make a person uncomfortable and in some cases even be verbally abusive. What about the person who loves to gossip? Listening to gossip can seem intriguing but it is a negative habit to pick-up and is damaging to the person it is about as well as your own reputation. What about those who lack tact when they speak and talk. They talk about taboo topics which are sexual in nature, lude, racist or discriminatory. These conversations are digressive and it would be more enjoyable if of another caliber—there are so many other more pleasant and respectful things to speak about than “gutter talk”. How do you address people who speak this way? Are situations like this leaving you tongue tied? The best way is to confront the person and let them know. Choose your words carefully, address the person and politely let them know what they are saying is offensive to you. If you don’t let them know, they may not know what they are doing is offensive. There are also times to remain silent. It is easy to get caught up in responding rudely to someone who is rude. The person you are addressing will get the message clearer if you speak simply and with respect rather than getting into a heated argument. If they still don’t stop, then limit your conversation with them to just formality and politeness. There are more enjoyable people to talk to, why spend time where your ears are being battered and where you can be brought down? Spend time listening to people who use their tongue to speak kindly and positively. The result will be a budding relationship in good taste.

There are a number of ways of rude communication in the way people speak about others. Remember the game telephone? You probably played it as a kid. It’s where someone tells someone something and then it is passed from one person to the next until it finally gets to the last person. The last person who reports what was transferred usually ends up with an entirely different message than what the first person said to begin with. It is so easy to twist the message of others to another meaning. Unless you are speaking to the source, you may not have the correct information. Be careful in what you share and be careful in what you hear. If it is personal business sometimes the best call is to not speak about it until you can find the few you can trust.

The gossiping tongue and meddling tongue are probably among the most challenging. Even in the most conservative settings like churches, it is not unusual to find gossipers who will ruin your name and the positive experience of being at church to worship; and it happens in plenty of other settings as well. Gossipers, those who spread information about others, and meddlers, those who want to protrude into the lives of others, are not sensitive to the other person’s life. They are insensitive and hurtful by being disrespectful with their conversations, comments, and prying questions. Even reverse gossip, the gossip of telling people they are trying to stop gossip or forewarning them of a situation, can still be gossip and is something to avoid. An example is when someone says “don’t say this…” but still mentions what the topic is about. Tie it up by standing up for the person who is being talked about. Tie up the conversation and let the person know you are not interested in hearing it and don’t hang around for more.

There are also plenty of people who have “an authoritative voice” which translates to an authoritative sounding tongue. These people, because of the way they communicate, sound like they are the expert and because of the tone of voice they use they can easily command others with what they tell them. They are natural salesmen and what they say does not need much explanation. No one questions their validity for some reason and really it has a lot to do with the fact they have an authoritative tone of voice. As expert con-artists, painting the picture to what they want you to believe, they have the ability to make it sound like you are their best friend who they are sharing important information with, even if you are a stranger. These people can be especially dangerous when it comes to gossip spreading. Anyone will buy their story and do whatever they tell them to spread it on to others, even if it is contorted from the actual truth, or is unnecessary to speak about to begin with.

Also avoid monkeying with monikers. Name-calling which is typical of little children, is not immune to the adult world. This type of juvenile communication exists among adults and is a form of bullying. While a name or phrase to describe someone may seem like a joke, it can be highly offensive. These monikers, or nicknames, can become popular and cause uncontrollable damage once it becomes attached as the new name for the person. It can become a form of public humiliation and shun. We hear these all the time for overweight people, ability, looks, beauty marks or perceived flaws, things that the common population may not agree with and find it a way to shun someone by mockery. It is a beautiful thing that we all were given a name at birth. Nicknames are fine, as long as the person finds it as acceptable. If not, it is offensive and harassment, is a form of targeted hate.

Pray for Your Tongue
The third way to tie up your tongue from speaking in ways which are unkind, is by praying for your tongue and speech. Hold yourself accountable by having a checklist of how you spoke throughout the day and see if you can do better next time. There are plenty of good quotes in the Bible and online which you can use for motivation. Think before you speak and remember to always speak gently, kindly and with charity. Over time you will become more well-spoken.

Follow Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness on Facebook and WordPress and @cultureofkind on Twitter. Be cultured. Be kind.

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SAY…WHAT!?! About Speech

Image

If you think Freedom of Speech means the freedom to say anything, think again. Defamation and other speech can be civil offenses. On the 4th of July we celebrate our country’s independence and the freedoms we have as Americans. The First Amendment protects the freedom of speech but how are many turning this into the liberty of hate speech? Learn more about defamation, slander, and effective communication. The content below shares valuable information on communication and the different between good speech and traps that we fall in with our tongue. View the infographic and read or listen to the podcast here!

Download the Infographic: How-To Communication with Etiquette SAY…WHAT!?!

What you says matters and speaking well of others is where winners are at. Join Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness for the podcast: How To Phrase It and You Can Quote Me. This podcast talks about how what you say matters especially when Freedom of Speech is taken too far. Learn ways to improve your relationships and how you speak by listening to the podcasts this month and joining this month’s online book discussions. Reach for a higher standard when it comes to communication. Be Cultured. Be Kind.

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How To Phrase It and You Can Quote Me

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How-To Phrase It and You Can Quote Me


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Free Speech: Ten Principles for a Connected World
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Sex Trafficking and the Perils of Privacy Invasion

Technology has helped position the sex trafficking industry as a lucrative market since the first sex website launched online in 1994. Since then, the online sex trafficking industry has grown, offering more options for buying and selling people into sex slavery and a smorgasbord of illicit, sexual services to clients all over the globe. The process is simple and streamlined with its transactions, leaving those involved virtually untraceable. Sex traffickers can easily generate revenue by posting services and enticing clients with a variety of digital content to meet specific requests—all at the expense and damage of those involuntarily expected to perform.

The Online Market for Traffickers
Conducting business online is a quick way to manage trafficking with less of a chance of being caught. It’s the ideal marketing playground for sex; sellers can reach specific target audiences with online advertising, and buyers can search for sexual services as a match for their needs. For sellers, posting online sex trafficking ads is an inexpensive way to find women and children to be bought and sold for sex services. For buyers, it is impossible to distinguish between online ads offering services they seek and those which involve unwilling trafficked women and children as participants. Exploding with an exploitation of minors, 100,000 websites exist that are dedicated to child pornography. In addition to advertising minors for sex, Backpage.com, which has since been shut down, was netting $150 million in revenue per year from adult service ads and was the source of 73% of child trafficking cases (Equality Now, 2020). Craigslist also ranks high as a way for online sex traffickers to remain anonymous while soliciting business. Fortunately, as sites use more advanced methods of artificial intelligence and laws are enforced, online advertisements have a greater chance of being detected and removed.

Footage and Footprints of Live-Streamed Sessions
Responding to ads posted online, buyers find sellers online who offer live-streamed sessions. Chat sessions using webcams are used to build a virtual relationship between the performer and client. An online relationship is established, enticing continual business with promises of eventually meeting the person. Victims who are exploited are forced to be on camera to put on a “show,” which brings in $20–$150 on average to the seller. Even children are offered a small amount of money to be part of nightly “shows” (International Observatory Human Rights, 2019). Buyers search online for children within a certain age range or who have a certain appearance. The seller provides live footage for them to view based on what they are looking for. Sex trafficking is a global issue, but in the United States alone, 21% of those who are victim to sex exploitation are children, with 63% of videos containing children under the age of 8 years old (Nuix, 2019). The ease of digital platforms has opened up ways for online advertising, marketing and communication to help bring in more sales and deliver content to buyers.

The Dangers of Other Online Sexual Content
Feeding addictions, curiosity and loneliness, cybersex trafficking provides sexual content and views to buyers for their visual pleasure, satiating their sexual perversions. Women and children who are used as slaves for the business are exploited, forced to engage in cybersex activities out of fear of abuse or other threats by sex traffickers. Online content and interactions include chat sessions, photos, recorded videos, live-streamed webcam videos and sex camming, where the buyer watches in real time and can request performances (Fight the New Drug, 2019). Selling sexual content can be highly profitable for sellers. It is not unusual for a live sex video to bring in $400 in 45 minutes. The victims, while of high value to the sellers, are treated as worthless. Young women who have been coerced into this sex business seldom receive money for sexual services but are used for traffickers to make money received by clients. Many are beaten if they do not cooperate and some are forced to have sex 20–48 times per day (Trafficked No More). Sex trafficking is a global concern as the Internet is used to transfer sexual content worldwide.

A Focus on Sex Camming and Trafficking Using Remote Drones
Another method for traffickers is using unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, to record live video of involuntary victims (Brookings, 2014). Thanks to aerial surveillance and remote applications, the target is able to be accessed live from anywhere. Even indoors within their own home, victims’ privacy is compromised while showering, undressing, using the toilet, having sex or just existing and the feed is streamed in full color with the ability for buyers to hear and speak to the victim. There is a limitless range to the accessibility of victims because they can be reached in any building and even outdoors in tents or at parks—anywhere electricity can be conducted, even through poles or trees outdoors. Friends or family members select the victim as the target without the victim’s permission. Additional recorded views are available online for purchase. Likewise, technology offers buyers the ability to X-ray the victim remotely to see through clothing and view inside the body to watch organs function and even interact with laser radiation to buzz them or pinpoint intimate body parts with a laser as they sleep. This form of sexual abuse and exploitation is nearly impossible to trace, and anyone can be made victim to this pervasive surveillance—anywhere and at any time—all for the benefit of those who have a device to invade others’ privacy for income and views. Although legislation is passed regulating the use of drones by the government, the general public being able to use drones as a means for trafficking is a concern that is overlooked.

Aperture With Legislation and Restrictions
In 2017, the government began to place a greater emphasis on online sex trafficking by passing the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act (FOSTA). This marked significant progress in establishing legislation for social networks, causing them to have a greater responsibility to censor content posted and sex trafficking advertisements. Victims can find hope for justice as social network providers face tighter restrictions and heightened accountability.

 

References

Brookings. McNeal, G. (2014, November). Drones and aerial surveillance: Considerations for legislatures. Retrieved from https://www.brookings.edu/research/drones-and-aerial-surveillance-considerations-for-legislatures/amp

Equality Now. (2020). Human Trafficking & Online Prostitution Advertising. Retrieved from https://www.equalitynow.org/interrupting_the_vicious_cycle_of_online_sex_trafficking

Equality Now. (2020). Interrupting the Vicious Cycle of Online Sex Trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.equalitynow.org/interrupting_the_vicious_cycle_of_online_sex_trafficking

Fight the New Drug. (2019, April 11). Uncovering the Dark World of Trafficking in the Webcamming Industry. Retrieved from https://fightthenewdrug.org/uncovering-secret-world-trafficking-camming-industry

International Observatory Human Rights. Allen, C. (2019, March 7). The Role of the Internet on Sex Trafficking. Retrieved from https://observatoryihr.org/blog/the-role-of-the-internet-on-sex-trafficking

Nuix. (2019, July 16). Pogue, C. Continuing the Fight Against Cybersex Trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.nuix.com/blog/continuing-fight-against-cybersex-trafficking

Trafficked No More. Sex Trafficking States. Retrieved from http://traffickednomore.org//warning-signs/sex-trafficking-stats

Written for One Bread Foundation, Inc., June 2020


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Sex Trafficking in the United States: Theory, Research, Policy, and Practice
by Andrea Nichols

Social Work Practice with Survivors of Sex Trafficking and
Commercial Sexual Exploitation

by Andrea Nichols, Tonya Edmond Ph.D., Erin Heil Ph.D. (Editors)


Camming

by Angela Jones


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Swearing Not My Type

Mouth of a sailor. Tide for the mouth. What is your tongue wearing? What are your ears subjected to from others?

People use swear words to “be cool or tough” or indignantly say them out of frustration. It can easily become habit. Why is it that people choose to use crass language and profanity to communicate? It might make a person seem more dangerous if they speak roughly using these unnecessary words. This type of communication may also be used as a form of artillery to attack another person. To bombard another person with unpleasant speech can be a method to alleviate feelings of hate or frustration which are built up. Some involuntary start spewing profanity during heated arguments to try to gain advantage in conflict or out of desperation to express anger.

Speech is a gift. Words used correctly can ring pleasantly in the ears of another to warm their soul. Words which are used correctly in speech can be a way to show respect to another person.

If you are a swearing addict, here are some creative ways to lick bad habits and strive for a new found tongue:

  1. Come up with words to replace the words you typically use.
  2. Instead of using the whole span of your profane vocabulary, choose only use one word for a certain amount of time before eliminating even that word.
  3. Reward yourself when you choose to speak without swearing.
  4. Bite your tongue and do not speak.
  5. Be conscious of sexual topics and other digressive topics in conversation and choose to talk about other things instead.

You will find your relationships improve drastically. People prefer to be around others who speak respectfully. It will also improve your professionalism at work. Additionally you can avoid habits which are easy to form from using profanity and speaking on inappropriate topics.

Choose to be the civilized type. Raise the standard by speaking politely, even amidst conflict. Use good language and make a choice to steer away from using profanity. Respectful speech wins friends and co-workers more than the damage which swearing can cause.

—Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness


Search these Amazon books and Audio resources…

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Conversationally Speaking:
Tested New Ways to Increase Your Personal and Social Effectiveness

by Alan Garner

Toxic to Transformed 100 Words of Life to Renew the Mind:
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by Donna L. Lewis

The Verbally Abusive Relationship, Expanded Third Edition:
How to recognize it and how to respond

by Patricia Evan

Verbal and Emotional Abuse [June Hunt Hope for the Heart Series]
by June Hunt

Verbal Abuse: Survivors Speak Out on Relationship and Recovery
by Patricia Evan

I Hear You: The Surprisingly Simple Skill Behind Extraordinary Relationships
by Michael S. Sorenson 

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Lose Your Slang
by Perry Mark Stratychuk

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Tide Products


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What Is Considered Rude Speech?

Cutting remarks, profanity, ordering instead of asking, speaking too loudly, being inconsiderate, interrupting, talking over another person not letting them speak, nonverbal communication, not being polite, dumbing down a conversation or speaking above the level of the other person, belittling, calling someone names sexual or nonsexual, mockery—these are all examples of rude speech.

It is easy to be misunderstood when communicating. The English language is fairly complicated filled with words which have multiple meanings, idioms, and slang. If you are not a native speaker, it can be that much more challenging to understand what is being communicated. It is more than just understanding what is being said—the context and meaning of what is being said must be understood and anything implied besides! It is so easy to be rude “in a nice way” and slip in added cuts cleverly to conversations to be caught by the ears in all the unpleasantness which is intended. Misunderstanding can also easily happen, especially if communication is not clear. A person might seem rude without even intending to be, if the message is received the wrong way. Questioning rude speech places the spotlight on the speaker to ask why they might have said something rude. Even if they are not honest, making a call that you were offended is part of self-respect and self-dignity which we have a responsibility to speak up for. When it is communicated there has been an insult made, it brings to the forefront that there is a problem, and sometimes this in itself is enough to discourage further rude speech. The speaker has successfully received the attention they were seeking and may decide to stop or at least think twice next time.

Online communication can equally lead to misunderstandings. What is typed may not exactly convey what is intended. Use of emojis and stickers are a good way to add expression to the message. Abbreviations used in text messages and emails also can lead to misunderstandings which can be taken as rudeness. Always clarify what is not understood. It may not mean what you initially thought.

When a person is rude to you, it is very easy to be caught in the moment to respond back equally with a rude comment in defense. Pausing before responding to carefully choose your words is the best way to be respectful and prevent an uncivil argument. Silently counting, adding a pregnant pause before responding can indicate something inappropriate was said. Sometimes the best method to address rudeness is to wait and come back later. It may be something you can ignore or it may not be as significant as it seemed in the moment. Thoughtless words can be said without intending to hurt someone. Question the individual. Start by giving the person the benefit of the doubt, then ask why the rude speech was made, state what was offensive and make a suggestion of what you would like to hear instead or another suggestion to correct it.

Reach for a higher standard of communication. Don’t fight rude speech with rude speech. Try addressing the issue, try humor, try space, try to raise the culture of their communication by leading by example.

—Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness


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Rape Part I: Physical Sexual Assault

Physical Sexual Assault and Rape
Sexual assault without consent is wrong, no matter what age a person is. It is taking the liberty of sexually violating another person without their permission or consent. Physical rape, rape by objects or using other body parts, sexual abuse, molestation, sex trafficking, indecent exposure, prostitution, and internet sex crimes, all are sexual crimes. Rapists have different ways of attacking their victims. A person can be a victim of a physical rape attack, with or without a weapon being used. It can occur anywhere as a forced situation by one person or a group of people who are known or unknown. Another approach is using drugs, alcohol, or spray to make the victim helpless unable to defend themselves. Sexual activity without consent is a violation and is against the law.

Portrait of the Victim
It would seem that the provocatively dressed women, with luring comments or seductive moves, lingering in questionable areas of town, late at night, would be the most likely to be raped. Surprisingly enough, this is not the case. Research has shown that victims of rape are more likely to be conservatively dressed passive women who are violated by people they know. In addition to the number of women who are raped, approximately 2.5% of the male population is raped per year. Rape does not just happen to women who put themselves in compromising situations. It can happen to anyone. Being aware of situations and practicing preventative measures helps in lowering the chance of being raped, but it is not foolproof.

Rape prevention programs can target the source of the problem by providing education on respect and the importance of observing boundaries. Rape cannot entirely be prevented, however, teaching women (and men) awareness of what to look for in their associations with people and how to be more cautious can help with preventing rape from happening.

Steps to Preventing the Possibility of Rape
Knowing what to look for and having a plan in place helps with being safe. Here are some ways to prevent the possibility of rape:

  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times
  • If you’re in college, know that the majority of rapes happen during the first few weeks of the year
  • Don’t leave your drink unattended
  • Drink responsibly
  • Stick with your friends
  • Stay safe at clubs
  • Be assertive
  • Keep personal information private
  • Always keep your phone charged

What to Do
With each situation being different, there is not one way to handle a rape situation. Here are some suggestions:

  • If able to, cause a distraction
  • Enlist others
  • Get loud, shout, and push back
  • Practice self-defense methods of aiming for areas of the body which can be damaged the easiest: eyes, nose, ears, neck, groin, knee, and legs
  • If unable to defend yourself in a struggle or where a weapon is involved, concede to the path of least resistance or safest possible position

    After a rape situation:
  • Ensure your safety and get medical attention
  • Call to report the situation afterwards to the police or a sexual abuse or rape crisis hotline

What to Look For
How can a person identify who might be a rapist? Here is a list of characteristics which are indicators of dangerous individuals. Avoid situations with someone who exhibits these characteristics or where a person could successfully use violence to attack you.
Source: www.nononsenseselfdefense.com.

Here is a list of danger signs to recognize in people who could be a threat:

1) Insensitivity for others/emphasis on self – Does this person put his wants above the needs, feelings or well being of others? Is getting his way more important to him than other people’s welfare? Often this can go beyond mere selfishness and border nearly on an “assumed divine right.” Often these people will justify a particularly vicious action with a flip comment like, “Hey, that’s how the game is played.” Such a person has no understanding that he must co-exist with others. Because he simply exists he thinks the world “owes” him whatever he wants. A common tactic of such a person it to make you feel bad for not doing what he wants.

2) Belittling behavior or attitudes towards others – Does this person habitually make nasty, belittling or degrading comments about others – especially under the guise of joking? Does this person think he is better than others? Does he look down on others? A nouveau riche aristocrat? Is he a racist? A person who thinks that race or social position makes him superior can also assume gender does too. When you think you are superior, an assumed right to ‘take’ what you want often follows.

3) Negating behavior or comments – Closely related to 1 and 2. Does he try to tell you what you are feeling or thinking? Or worse, tell you what you are not? Comments like “you don’t really mean that” are serious indicators of someone trying to negate you. A person who negates others is trying to take away the other person’s thoughts, feelings and needs and attempting to project his wants onto that person. The most obvious example of this is “Well even though she said ‘no’, she really meant ‘yes’”.

4) Hostile and/or threatening language – What words does a person use? Choice of words convey subconscious assumptions about a particular topic. For example a man who generically refers to women using profane names does not have good assumptions about females (or much respect). It is all too easy to dismiss this behavior as just “blowing off steam.” But if it is a constant behavior, it goes far beyond that. Someone who habitually uses violent or threatening language should be carefully watched for possible escalation. It’s on his mind already. It’s a uncomfortably short step from ‘thinking about’ to ‘doing’.

5) Bullying – This behavior is especially dangerous. Does this person use overt or subtle threats to get his way? A bully uses the threat of violence more than actual violence. Most often bullies are not willing to risk conflict with someone who can hurt them (an alpha male), and will instead chose to intimidate someone he considers weaker and safer. Someone who is bullying over other matters can easily turn to bullying you regarding sex. The close conversation subjects because it angers or upsets them or they will have a long and elaborate story how it really wasn’t their fault.

6) Excessive anger – How easy does this person anger? Is he a “Short Fuse”? Does he boil over at the slightest problem? This is an indication of chronic anger. A person who explodes over a minor issue is like a full pot boiling over on the stove. It’s not that the issue is all that important, but that he has so much anger already, any more causes him to explode. Often people with chronic anger look for targets to vent their anger at. This could manifest as physical fights, abuse, or rape.

7) Brooding/ revenge – Does this person hang onto his anger long after the situation is over? Will he still be stewing over something while everyone else has moved onto other things? Will he become anti-social and glare at the source of his anger from across the room? Will he insist on taking revenge for real or imagined slights? Both indicate a petty and obsessive personality. A brooder fixates on something and then works himself into a frenzy over it. A person who seeks revenge “has to win” and is willing to take it to extremes. Refusing such a person’s sexual advances can turn this tendency towards you.

8) Obsession – This is a close cousin to number seven. It is a major factor with acquaintance rapes. This is the person who won’t leave you alone. He insists on ‘hitting on you’ long after you have told him no. He is always trying establish forced intimacy (see ‘bonding process’ below). Such obsessions easily turn into anger when his advances are rejected. One day he shows up in a fringe area, drunk and attacks.

9) Extreme mood swings – Beware someone who can go from wildly happy to deeply wounded at a moment’s notice. This sort of personality can feel justified to commit an unlimited amount of violence and damage, because you “hurt his feelings.” This is a common pattern among those with chronic anger about life.

10) Physical tantrums – How does this person get angry? Especially when denied “getting his way”. Beware of a person who regularly physically assaults his environment i.e. hitting walls, kicking things etc. It is only a short step from striking a car to attacking you.

11) Jock or gorilla mentality – This mentality promotes both acceptance and encouragement for the use of violence. It is especially common among participants of contact sports. What is most insidious about this mentality is the “jock” receives, not only positive reinforcement, but out-and-out applause for being aggressive and violent. This can easily lead to a failure to differentiate between the playing field and real life. Mike Tyson’s comment is a prime example: “Nobody ever objected before.”

12) A mean drunk – Nearly all rape and abuse cases involve alcohol. Watch what surfaces when someone is intoxicated. It shows what is always lurking underneath. Do not put yourself into a situation where you would deal with such a person while he is intoxicated. Most importantly, don’t allow your facilities to be diminished by alcohol or drugs in this person’s presence.

13) Alcohol or drug abuse – To begin with drug and alcohol addiction can in be traced back to selfishness and a refusal to change one’s world view. Alcohol and drugs are not the cause of bad behavior, rather they are used as an excuse! Often the attacker intentionally became intoxicated to ignore the social restrictions and inhibitions regarding violence.

14) Smooth-talking individuals – These smooth-talkers can easily convince others into believing what they want them to believe. And the more you want to believe the less convincing he will have to do. But without this willingness to ignore common sense on your part, even the smoothest con-artist has no power and no chance to harm you.

While there are others, these behaviors are serious indicators of a potential rapist. This short list should acquaint you with the basics. Not all men are rapists, but a person like this has a higher probability than others. You not only find these traits among rapists and abusers, but also professional criminals. Philosophically there is little difference between such, they are all selfish. Most often it is just a matter of degrees, style and choice of victims.

Some rape situations cannot be prevented. Many times rapists will use sprays or drugs on the victim so they become unconscious before taking advantage of them. Being aware and cautious of where you are and who you are with can help prevent rape. In situations which cannot be prevented, be sure to report what you know and what happened as soon as possible. It may take several days or weeks, but in many cases the victim can recall at least part of what happened and can identify who was there.

Information from www.nononsenseselfdefense.com


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Eyes Seeing You: Camera Invasion

The trend today is to use applications to view people remotely. In fact, as the latest enigma in viewing pleasure, its rankings are escalating higher than that of everyday TV shows. Why invest time watching sitcoms when you can watch those you love and care about live, spying on all the intricacies of their everyday life. Spying real-time, these applications have the ability to invade the privacy of anyone simply by entering in data. Accessing them anywhere, the viewer is able to view them as if a security camera were pointed directly on them in full zoom, showing all details, in full-color, and real-time. Not only can the person view live, but they are able to speak overhead, all from off-site. Most of these violators use it as entertainment or a type of porn, except it is worse than porn. With porn, women at least give have given permission to be seen either in magazines, online, or through video. Using their device to view remotely, users are easily fooled as repeated use becomes a way to join someone entering into their life, as a form of an imaginary dating or marriage relationship, accessing more details than if that were truly the case. The one-way relationship only exists in their mind however as they access another person’s life and drive an addiction of a need-to lust for knowledge. With the remote app, the victim’s entire life is invaded upon and stolen. Each second is able to be viewed from anywhere, and live—and by anyone for that matter who is given access. It gives a new meaning to rape of the human soul.

There are some things which should remain private and do not need to be known by others, such as how we go to the bathroom, nudity, personal conversations, and x-raying through clothes to view details to mock, shun, or compare. Those viewing redefine their understanding of humanity, with their preferred, new interpretation of what it means to interact with another human. As a complete insult to human dignity and human life, these have learned to see humans as less than humans, but rather as a remote TV show or a walking human object to know all the intricacies about. They label it as a division of anthropology, the art of studying of humans—and without permission, division it is. These prefer to strip down the human existence to a breathing corpse of a body, an object as something to disrespect and observe. The human soul is being beaten upon as the person assumes access to another’s life striving have equality to God. Who gives them this right? God as all knowing, has this top security-clearance. He knows and sees everything, and loves all He has created. Humans who take this liberty do not need all of this knowledge and violate human dignity. The victim is viewed and the shattering effects are qualified for ICU.

By diving into another’s world without permission, they are breaking up whatever relationship could have been or was. Abounding in excuses with reasons to justify it such as security, experience to be nude, or any other reason is just an excuse for their destruction. Without permission, none of these “reasons” can hold worth. Respecting boundaries are important especially when it comes to human dignity. Beyond being disrespectful, viewing someone without permission is the epitome of selfishness and unphysical rape. Looking into their own world to take a look at themselves, might do them a world of good, and be a better place to invest their time.  

What happened to asking “May I…?” What was more important was the selfishness of “I”.  The result is definitely: “can this” —by letting go of that one, and all of them who choose that approach, and walk away to wait upon what a higher standard sees—in person, with “May I?”.

—Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness


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