Michael Vick Contextualized Once More

If you are black, there is no limit to the heights from which you can fall. Even if you are poor and white, you have betting odds when law-breaking.

A multimillionaire, Vick will see prison for fighting dogs. Poor whites get jail sentences suspended for pitting toddlers against each other.

I will go out on a limb and predict that we will not hear from PETA or the New York Times about the welfare of these children. This story won’t make Bill O’Reilly’s talking points. The whole right wing consortium that calls itself the US media won’t care at all. Because the dogfighting incident wasn’t about dogfighting at all. It was about making a public racial spectacle of a rich black guy that wouldn’t kiss white ass.

Suspended sentences for toddler fight women

Friday April 20, 2007
Guardian Unlimited

(L to R) Zara Care, Carole Olver, Danielle Olver, and Ferenza Olver outside Plymouth crown court in Devon
(L to R) Zara Care, Carole Olver, Danielle Olver, and Ferenza Olver outside Plymouth crown court in Devon. Photograph: Anthony Devlin/PA

Four “callous” women who forced a pair of toddlers into fighting and filmed them as they punched each other today escaped jail sentences. The women, all from the same Plymouth family, goaded the boy and girl into hitting each other until they cried, and called the boy a “wimp” and a “faggot” when he did not fight back.The incident was filmed on a video camera and discovered by chance by a person, who reported it to social services, Plymouth crown court heard.

When interviewed by police, one of the women said: “I didn’t see any harm in toughening them up – I done the same with my own children.”Zara Care, 29, Carole Olver, 48, Serenza Olver, 29, and Danielle Olver, 19, were today given 12-month sentences, suspended for two years, after admitting child cruelty charges.

The eight-minute film was “shocking to watch”, judge Francis Gilbert said as he passed sentence.

“You laughed at them, you mocked them, you swore at them,” he said. “You compelled them to hit each other even though they clearly did not want to. You were cruel, callous, clearly causing the children to hurt each other for your own pleasure.”

The video shows the boy and girl – neither of whom was identified in court – in tears but still being shouted at to carry on by the laughing women.

At one point the boy, wearing a nappy and a T-shirt, is cheered for repeatedly hitting the girl around the head with a magazine, before a hairbrush is thrown into the room to be used as a weapon.

When the boy cries after being punched in the face he is told “not to be a wimp” and to hit her back. At another stage he tries to get away by climbing into an armchair as the women urge the girl to punch him again.

When she does, the boy is urged to fight back, but says: “No, I don’t want to.”

Care pleaded guilty to causing or procuring the children to be ill-treated in a manner likely to cause unnecessary suffering or injury. The other three admitted jointly inciting the ill-treatment of children.

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