Do something for me. Go to google, and type in Nicole Freeborn, and tell me what you find, boys and girls. If your google page is like my google page, you’ll find a whole wack of screaming, ra ra ra-ing and whining. About what you say? Well, this chick claims that she was sexually assaulted by a police officer while being arrested at a protest. The story goes that a group of people from Guelph Union of Tenants and Supporters, GUTS, were holding a protest and had to be arrested, as often seems to happen when these people gather to protest. Hell they even vaguely advocated for the setting of fires at various development sites throughout the city. During her arrest, an officer allegedly pinned her against a wall, pressed his pelvis into her “bum” and said, “How do you like that?” Before handing her off to a female officer to be taken to the station. And now, the reason for the google search I mentioned. There is a giant campaigne all over the web talking about her story, referencing the offending officer’s name and badge number, and calling for his immediate termination. Why don’t we just get a stake and burnhim at it?
Ok, he was arresting her, and she was likely resisting, since these people like to fight the system to their own detrament. This is also the same woman who put up ads through a mailing list asking people to join her in forming a fight club in a public park. So, what do you expect this officer to do? Stand there and kindly Ask her to please stop resisting and calm down? No! he’s going to restrain her, and it likely felt like he pressed his pelvis into her. As for the words, “How do you like that?”, if he said those words, he’s a dick and should be tried, but how easy would that be to be heard and proven that you heard it during a noisy and commotion-filled protest. Along with her, four other people are being arrested, I assume for being unreasonable and causing more noise. Then there are the regular protesters, police perhaps driving in, and other random noise. I would think that he would whisper or say these words quietly, so that at best, anyone who’s not her would have to read his lips which are most likely near the back of her head since he’s pinning her down. At this point, that part of the story is her word and the word of a few other bystanders who say they’re friends of hers against his.
If I believed that it happened, I’d be right behind her. But here’s something else I found out. It was stated in the paper that the police chief has called in the Special Investigations Unit to get to the bottom of this, and they want to meet with her. They want to meet with her in Mississauga, which is like an hour away from where she lives, if that. But this girl says that is too much for her. In her words printed in the same article, “I don’t have any money, I don’t have any transportation, and I don’t have any faith.” Apparently she doesn’t have any official complaint either, since she never bothered to file one. Ok, I’ve never been sexually assaulted, but I’ve been wronged in other ways, and I think if a special investigations unit wanted to meet with me about any of them, I’d be doing anything to get there, and I don’t have much money or any transportation of my own either. Faith? I don’t know if you can ever have no faith in anything, friends, processes, life’s possibilities. If you don’t, what’s the point of living?
And about those friends and processes, what about that big organization called GUTS that started this mess? According to the press release that’s duplicated everywhere, some of them witnessed it, and had no problem bellowing at police at the scene. How about doing something productive and useful like, oh, say, helping her get there by arranging transportation? For christ’s sake, buy a bus ticket, find a car, pay for gas, something! If you believe in what she’s saying and saw the disturbing display of disregard you’re claiming to have seen, show it. They’re not asking her to travel to the People’s Republic of China to talk to these people. How hard would it be to help? Hell I’ve travelled to a place near Mississauga just to help a friend with something a lot less serious than this. I love groups like this. They’re all over causing a stirr, but don’t want to do any real work.
Let’s get bak to the star of the show with more of her own words. “I’m trying to figure out if there is any point in continuing with their complaint process. I don’t feel like they’re making it very easy.” How easy do you want them to make it? If you want an independent body involved, they’re not going to be local. You’re going to have to go somewhere else to get this done.
Let’s here more fine words from our friendly neighbourhood gutless wonder. “Just based on the response so far, I don’t think they’re taking it as seriously as they should be. It seems like it’s going to take a long time.” Let’s dissect this piece by piece. They’re not taking this seriously? Neither are you if you’re not willing to go to Mississauga for a meeting, or even file a complaint. It’s going to take a long time? Of course it is! Court proceedings concerning murder take a long time. Anything involving due process will take a long time. Has this activist ever actually advocated for anything before? A human rights complaint takes, gulp, five years on average! Trust me, I know this. You see, I’ve tried to do some actual work, and that’s how I know that. Due process is long, it’s painful, and part of me thinks that’s the point. They want to know you’re serious, and if they can make you give up along the way, woohoo, less work for them. It sure didn’t take long in this case.
I guess all of this will make more sense in time. I hope the investigation will get to the bottom of it, no matter how long it takes. I hope she cooperates with it to help us make sense of things. And, if it’s determined that what she said happened, then I’ll take back almost everything I said. But right now, while all these other people are screaming, “Get ’em!”” The only thing this story screams is, “you’re lying!”