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George Morris on the SS list

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  • Originally posted by dags View Post

    I'd argue it was also way better suited to the self-propelled Thoroughbred, and not quite as effective on the less-motivated warmbloods that have dominated the last 30 years. Worth noting how many of our up & coming international riders are seeking their finishing education overseas now... and how low our fences have gotten to accommodate the American Forward Seat on a "kicking quiet" jr/am show horse.
    And that' why the courses were changed to favor WBs. The French started doing it back in the 1950s to favor the Selle Francais.

    Comment


    • Sorry Crashing Boar that ain't gonna fly with me. Obviously, you've never been the victim/survivor of a violent crime. Sure, my attacker may have been a "good guy" at one time, hell for all I know, 363 days of the year he attacked me he was. But on the night he attacked me, he was the devil incarnate and believe me - he wasn't drunk or high - he knew exactly what he was doing. I'll judge him all I want - thank you very much. And considering he was never caught - that's all I've got.

      And truth be told there's a big difference between a good guy whose life gets turned upside down, whose obviously suffering from some mental health issues and GM, sexual misconduct with a minor, I mean come on, you just can't put a good spin on that no matter how hard you try. Somethings are unforgiveable no matter who you are.

      Comment


      • I am not saying “judge not that ye may be judged” at all. I am saying the opposite in fact in that all the wonderful stuff he has done doesn’t mean it’s impossible for him to have done the awful stuff as well. It doesn’t mean his wonderful stuff wasn’t wonderful, it unarguably is unless you are one who has to argue for the sake of arguing but it doesn’t change the fact that he did some heinous things as well. Much like priests who dedicate their lives to serving God and mankind all while molesting children. You can’t say he helped feed thousands of starving children in Africa so there is no way he molested the choirboy. They are separate and completely independent of each other and neither made it impossible for the other to have taken place.
        McDowell Racing Stables

        Home Away From Home

        Comment


        • Originally posted by IPEsq View Post
          There's a leap between that and saying I defend his actions. I mean, aside from the SS allegations, I never thought it was right of him to be such a bully, or to use some of the training methods he's used (while also being against any "gimmicks" or shortcuts...hypocritical much?). I was a star student at the clinic where the photo came from, and at that same clinic he was quite mean to a younger rider who was trying really hard but wasn't the most experienced and was a little over-horsed. He called her a baby repeatedly and made fun of her weight, got mad at her trainer for matching her with that horse, etc etc. She watched me in my session be the star student. Her trainer asked me to talk to her after the clinic. I told her that when I was her age, he threw dirt in my mouth (well, he missed and it went down my boot) and was mean to my horse and he can be just an awful person. I said to ignore all of that, but take in the actual substance of your lesson about your position and the importance of attention to detail, and effective use of aids, and work hard and you will succeed.
          I'm sorry, I guess you got something out of your lessons with him that was worth it for you. But reading this description of the clinic just makes me sad. This is simply training teenagers that they should not have any respect for themselves and should put up with whatever a famous trainer wants to say or do to them. And people wonder why folks don't report abuse - they have literally been taught that it is okay and expected by the people around them that they trust. They are hearing the lesson - If you put up with the abuse this time, next time maybe you'll be the star student. Yes, this story was about verbal abuse, not sexual abuse, but if you see that people are accepting of verbal abuse in public because it's a famous trainer, why would anyone being sexually abused by a famous trainer in private think anyone would care.

          Comment



          • Originally posted by dags

            '''they were still making their way out of the Draft Ages when our thirst for tall, beefy, slow-footed creatures arrived on the scene..
            Agreed. A lot of them were real cart horses when they first hit the scene, mostly as dressage horses. They have evolved tremendously as the courses got tighter and the TA got faster and faster in both jumpers and eventing. And certainly the WBs of the early 90's wouldn't do at all in the hunter ring.

            Having said that, I will say I have always loved TBs and I'm glad they are making a comeback in the hunters, at least in classes of their own.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Gardenhorse View Post

              I'm sorry, I guess you got something out of your lessons with him that was worth it for you. But reading this description of the clinic just makes me sad. This is simply training teenagers that they should not have any respect for themselves and should put up with whatever a famous trainer wants to say or do to them. And people wonder why folks don't report abuse - they have literally been taught that it is okay and expected by the people around them that they trust. They are hearing the lesson - If you put up with the abuse this time, next time maybe you'll be the star student. Yes, this story was about verbal abuse, not sexual abuse, but if you see that people are accepting of verbal abuse in public because it's a famous trainer, why would anyone being sexually abused by a famous trainer in private think anyone would care.
              Well, when I spoke with this kid the clinic was over, and I was basically trying to help her make lemonade out of a humiliating experience, having also been there myself. And I didn't really think I'd clinic with him again ever, but I was a couple decades older with thicker skin and prepared for the worst even though I got a better experience at the end of the day. When I was a kid, I didn't dare talk back to a clinician. But I also faked it when he told me to hit my OTTB with my crop repeatedly and said OTTB was melting down, and I took the resulting abuse for that decision and for yawning and for his assistant putting my spurs back on wrong and whatever else I got yelled at for. I dunno, that's how I was taught to be a coachable student. There's no crying in baseball. Is it wrong to coach someone in the manner in which he does a lot of the time? Yes. And I didn't try to convince that kid that he wasn't a mean old man--quite the contrary. I told her not to let that mean old man make her give up on her drive for riding. But by this decade, I mean really, if you take a clinic you know (or your trainer should make you aware) you are likely signing up for some abuse. And sure, his power is what allowed him to get away with that for many decades and allowed him to get away with all of the other things he's done. That doesn't mean that he also hasn't done good things. It also doesn't mean the bad things he has done should always be whitewashed or that he shouldn't face the consequences for them.

              Comment


              • Originally posted by Crashing Boar View Post

                A long time ago I had a wonderful coach in another sport which encompassed both group and private lessons, for both children and adults. The bulk of his business was children, and it was the biggest and best place like that in town. I came to the sport at a particularly low point in my life, trying to figure out who the hell I still was after losing a business I'd had since my early 20's. Not only did this guy teach me the sport all the way to instructor level, he rebuilt my confidence and eventually made me a pro who worked alongside him teaching for the next five years. There was nothing improper between us or anyone else. That said, in his private life he went through 3 stormy marriages that ended in mucky divorces, and admitted to being a "functioning" alcoholic.

                The parents and kids worshipped him. Physically spectacular (think tall bodybuilder crossed with dancer) and with a personality much bigger than life, to little boys in particular he seemed a comic-book hero come to life. The ladies just plain thought he was a Stud and he had no lack of propositions. The place's stock in trade was taking wimpy, misfit, often medicated kids and turning them into teens with outgoing self-confidence, poise and a can-do spirit. He did this for literally thousands of young people, and no small list of searching adults, over a period of 25 years. He kept his personal issues outside the door, and won many noteworthy community awards for outstanding service to youth.

                At age 50 he came up with a particularly grisly hereditary cancer, entailing very difficult surgeries after which he tried to save face and keep teaching and coaching. Unfortunately, his body wouldn't cooperate and he couldn't face the altered self-image brought with this cruel illness that hit him in what should have been the prime of middle age. The substance abuse deepened; a public DUI; the last divorce; eventually he lost the business after years of it slowly winding down. For several years, no one knew where he'd gone, long out of the public eye, spiralling downward.

                I don't know what he was "on" or what happened exactly when the very sad end came, but he suicided with a gun a couple towns over and took a relative with him. It shocked the community, no one who had known him could have imagined he was capable of such a thing, no matter how sick or addicted he'd become. It was truly a tragedy. No one made any excuse for the magnitude of the crime that he committed; even the police were heartbroken. Out of respect for the deceased, the local newspapers did their best to kill the story so the kids didn't have to know.

                What has never been forgotten was the 25 years plus of non-stop, unsparing effort he put in to help kids and many others in the community, including the forgotten, the disabled and those written off as "autistic" or "adhd." He never gave up on them even when sometimes their parents had. While his sad end involved a heinous crime, murder/suicide, in my eyes that DOES NOT ERASE the lifetime he spent in positive effort for the betterment and enjoyment of others. Thousands of people enjoyed, benefited from and valued his tutelage and still value all he gave our community for so long. Before he murdered someone in taking his own life.

                Every single person in this life does good things and bad things, things they're proud of and things that were grave mistakes that now make them cringe. Many have done stuff "under the influence" that wouldn't have happened stone cold sober. Many have gone along with "the crowd," "the moment," the times and what they thought they could get away with. I'm betting the majority of the Valkyrie chorus engaged in this digital lynching of GHM here have skeletons banging around their closets, too. By all means speak truth about the bad and the unacceptable, but you can NOT strip away the positive contributions George has also made for so many all over the world. To do so is pure vindictiveness.

                "Judge not, that ye be not judged." A way better man than me said that an awfully long time ago.
                I’m 100% ok with people judging child abusers and child molesters. Horse abusers and cheaters too.

                Comment


                • Originally posted by odilon View Post
                  So bewilderd bye these comments...
                  who cares about your calls....
                  this is about fundamental rights.....
                  Not about the man....About the process
                  #istandwithgeorge
                  Great. Another one who posts without reading the 100+ prior pages. To summarize for you: yes, there is due process. No, GHM’s rights haven’t been violated.

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by odilon View Post
                    So bewilderd bye these comments...
                    who cares about your calls....
                    this is about fundamental rights.....
                    Not about the man....About the process
                    #istandwithgeorge
                    If you read the SafeSport policies, you would feel less bewildered.

                    Here’s the link: https://safesport.org/files/details/114

                    I recommend jumping to page 21 of the manual and beginning with the “resolution procedures” section.

                    You’re welcome!
                    Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by IPEsq View Post

                      Well, when I spoke with this kid the clinic was over, and I was basically trying to help her make lemonade out of a humiliating experience, having also been there myself. And I didn't really think I'd clinic with him again ever, but I was a couple decades older with thicker skin and prepared for the worst even though I got a better experience at the end of the day. When I was a kid, I didn't dare talk back to a clinician. But I also faked it when he told me to hit my OTTB with my crop repeatedly and said OTTB was melting down, and I took the resulting abuse for that decision and for yawning and for his assistant putting my spurs back on wrong and whatever else I got yelled at for. I dunno, that's how I was taught to be a coachable student. There's no crying in baseball. Is it wrong to coach someone in the manner in which he does a lot of the time? Yes. And I didn't try to convince that kid that he wasn't a mean old man--quite the contrary. I told her not to let that mean old man make her give up on her drive for riding. But by this decade, I mean really, if you take a clinic you know (or your trainer should make you aware) you are likely signing up for some abuse. And sure, his power is what allowed him to get away with that for many decades and allowed him to get away with all of the other things he's done. That doesn't mean that he also hasn't done good things. It also doesn't mean the bad things he has done should always be whitewashed or that he shouldn't face the consequences for them.
                      Yes, I believe you had good intentions in speaking with her, I just wonder what lesson she took away from both the clinic and the discussion.

                      And I really don't mean to pick on you in particular, as I have certainly heard many similar stories about GM clinics. It just makes me sad that for many, many years the community's response to this sort of abusive behavior has been to tell the victims to put up with it in order to learn rather than telling the abuser that it's unacceptable. I realize that a lot of the research/knowledge about effective learning/coaching styles is recent and many people still believe a strict and stern instructional style is the best way to learn (and it may be for them), but I think there's always been a difference between strict and abusive that hopefully will start to be better acknowledged going forwards.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Crashing Boar View Post

                        I'm betting the majority of the Valkyrie chorus engaged in this digital lynching of GHM here have skeletons banging around their closets, too. By all means speak truth about the bad and the unacceptable, but you can NOT strip away the positive contributions George has also made for so many all over the world. To do so is pure vindictiveness.

                        "Judge not, that ye be not judged." A way better man than me said that an awfully long time ago.
                        I realize there's a group of people out there convinced that the COTH forums are full of mean people who are enjoying nothing more than tearing down George Morris (and Rob Gage). Out of our petty meanness or whatever.

                        I can say that's not the case for me, and probably not for the vast majority of those who have commented. I was very sad to read of Gage's death, and even though I wondered if SS would catch up with GM, I was saddened to read the news. It's painful for our sport.

                        But what crushed me more, and what I had to push back against, was the idea that he couldn't possibly have victims. The idea that we don't need SafeSport, the idea that some professionals are so important that they are above the law and above ethical restrictions. And if that means I have to explain to people all of the sad bits of evidence that I know about, so that they get an inkling of what they may be defending, I will do that. I would have rather a situation where everyone had accepted that SafeSport probably knew something we didn't and stick with the collective sadness, rather than dig up and hash out details.

                        We all need to come to grips with the fact that someone can be a great athlete or coached successfully for many years and still do bad things. We know this from other sports, after all. And pretty much all walks of life.

                        We can't let them be above the law. We can't let them hurt people or horses without consequence. We can't fail to protect our next generation.

                        The kids they hurt are as important to our sport as they are.

                        As far as "digital lynching," I can only shake my head at how little you understand that word, and how much our teaching of history has failed us. Lynching was a level of torture and cruelty that I cannot fully describe on this board without running afoul of forum rules. But it usually involved dismemberment, and then death, in that order. I don't think "forced into a comfortable if slightly earlier than planned retirement at age 81" can or should be described with the same word.
                        If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by poltroon View Post



                          As far as "digital lynching," I can only shake my head at how little you understand that word, and how much our teaching of history has failed us. Lynching was a level of torture and cruelty that I cannot fully describe on this board without running afoul of forum rules. But it usually involved dismemberment, and then death, in that order. I don't think "forced into a comfortable if slightly earlier than planned retirement at age 81" can or should be described with the same word.
                          You are referring to a standard "lynching" which has a different description.

                          Digital Lynch mob and digital lynching are actually common terms and current terms to describe current online behavior. It refers "to the situation where someone says something on SoMe which others find offensive or questionable. People who often have no prior connection to the original poster bash and sometimes attack the original poster for what was said."

                          One is current behavior (digital variety) and the other is (at least we hope it is) in the past. I moderate professional communities and SoMe channels as part of my employment and yes, digital lynching and digital lynch mobbing are real terms. To attack someone for using a current term is demonstrative of what "digital lynching" or "digital lynch mobbing is."

                          Now you and everyone else reading are woke to the term. You can continue to hate it and mock those using it, but you only serve to bring to life the very definition of what it is if you choose to do so.

                          Carry on.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by LexInVA View Post

                            That is working under the assumption that the lessor won't speak to the lessee when informed of lessee's open support of a (currently) alleged-and-not-convicted-by-the-legal-system child molester - no real ground to stand on at this time, unfortunately - and driving the lessee to get lawyers involved to see what and who precipitated the termination of the lease, thereby giving the lessee grounds for a legal battle after her lease is terminated. Assumption is the mother of all f***-ups and this would be a textbook backseat accident, as there are likely numerous court cases that cover such a scenario. There's plenty of ambulance-chaser type lawyers who would happily commit billable hours to a case that could result from the proposed actions and that only makes things worse, not better. If GM gets held legally accountable down the line and is found or pleads guilty in a court of law, there's some ground to stand on if the lessee still openly proclaims undying love and fealty to him and disparages SafeSport or abuse victims, giving clear proof that it's not a good idea to be in business with them.
                            I'm not working under any assumption at all. If the lessor does not want to renew the lease, he or she does not have to talk to the lessee at all. You are the one dreaming up the situation of who is talking to whom and getting lawyers involved. And leases usually have an expiration date that is agreed upon when signed, or if it is time period to time period, the terms of ending the lease are laid out in the lease. Usually something like either party can end the lease with X days notice. No need to get lawyers involved if you go by what already is agreed upon. Can't imagine why someone would not have a lease that never ends.
                            "When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in a confederacy against him."

                            Comment


                            • I don't think this meets either definition.

                              This thread is about George Morris, who while he certainly has said some pretty shitty things, is banned and being discussed because he raped children.
                              Let me apologize in advance.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by ybiaw View Post

                                I think (and correct me if I'm wrong, I've been off the forums for a while so the nuances and personalities are a bit rusty to me) that Laurie is making the point that it's ok to separate the impact he has had on the sport and the education of American riders from the heinous acts of abuse. It's ok to be shocked and sad about the allegations against someone you once respected as a horseman that resulted in his ban from the governing body and sport, but still to appreciate the education you received from that person.
                                I disagree with you. He would ridicule and shame riders if they did not wear a shirt he approved of or a saddle pad color he approved of. Or they were overweight or made some mistakes. The color you wear and the color saddle pad or boots you put on your horse has nothing to do with horsemanship, and for a grown man to harp on this repeatedly is ridiculous. He was being paid for riding lessons, not fashion advice. But no one dares speak up about how nasty and arrogant he was, and he got away with way too much. I think you can educate people while being respectful. In his world, respect was a one way street.
                                "When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in a confederacy against him."

                                Comment


                                • Originally posted by Palm Beach View Post

                                  I disagree with you. He would ridicule and shame riders if they did not wear a shirt he approved of or a saddle pad color he approved of. Or they were overweight or made some mistakes. The color you wear and the color saddle pad or boots you put on your horse has nothing to do with horsemanship, and for a grown man to harp on this repeatedly is ridiculous. He was being paid for riding lessons, not fashion advice. But no one dares speak up about how nasty and arrogant he was, and he got away with way too much. I think you can educate people while being respectful. In his world, respect was a one way street.
                                  Which is pretty surprising given that he appears in USET training session video used in -The Horse in the Gray Flannel Suit- oops I meant The Horse With The Flying Tail - wearing an orange shirt and rust breeches, but I digress.
                                  Last edited by poltroon; Aug. 16, 2019, 10:23 PM. Reason: Mixed up my disney horse movie titles. I'm so embarrassed.
                                  If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                                  Comment


                                  • The NY State Court System has just instituted a program where the normal Statute of Limitations for child related sex offenses are suspended, allowing for cases to be brought before the court to address alleged offenses no matter how long ago the alleged incidents were from.

                                    Over 40 judges and other resources have been obtained and are dedicated to addressing the anticipated wave of filings.

                                    All of NY State is included including places like Long Island and upstate NY where the subjects of this post spent time.

                                    This program is scheduled to last for one year.

                                    These are civil actions for money and this law allows for institutions as well as individuals to be sued.

                                    http://ww2.nycourts.gov/doc/22881
                                    Last edited by Knights Mom; Aug. 16, 2019, 07:52 PM. Reason: And bad spelling of "grammar" OOPSIE this is what happens when you spend the days talking to The Publics

                                    Comment


                                    • Originally posted by poltroon View Post

                                      Which is pretty surprising given that he appears in USET training session video used in The Horse in the Gray Flannel Suit wearing an orange shirt and rust breeches, but I digress.
                                      GM was in Horse in the Gray Flannel Suit?!!

                                      Or was it a character similar to him? Played by (I think) Lloyd Bochner?

                                      Comment


                                      • Originally posted by Tigre Horse View Post
                                        Sorry Crashing Boar that ain't gonna fly with me. Obviously, you've never been the victim/survivor of a violent crime. Sure, my attacker may have been a "good guy" at one time, hell for all I know, 363 days of the year he attacked me he was. But on the night he attacked me, he was the devil incarnate and believe me - he wasn't drunk or high - he knew exactly what he was doing. I'll judge him all I want - thank you very much. And considering he was never caught - that's all I've got.

                                        And truth be told there's a big difference between a good guy whose life gets turned upside down, whose obviously suffering from some mental health issues and GM, sexual misconduct with a minor, I mean come on, you just can't put a good spin on that no matter how hard you try. Somethings are unforgiveable no matter who you are.
                                        Actually, I have been the survivor of violent criminals. And at an impressionably young age, too.

                                        First, my house was broken into and rifled by burglars, with many very personally treasured items stolen. 1978.

                                        Second, I was robbed at gunpoint in my own office just before Christmas the year I turned 23. That kind of stuff stays with you; I will never drop my guard in a convenience store, gas station, or bodega ever again. We were herded into the bathroom and told to kneel with our hands behind our heads; didn't know if we were about to be pistol-whipped or much worse. A strange calm overtakes you at times like that . . . I told myself I'd had a really good life. They left us.

                                        So I had some very up-close-and personal, indelible experience as to how the presence of a gun can turn a loser POS into the dominant party in any situation, with the lives of good people in his unworthy hands. That awareness is not paranoia or fear, but it is like a "backround program" which is always running. I do not carry, but I do have a gun for self-defense in my home. Because I *know.*.

                                        Doesn't mean I project my experience onto everyone I meet, public or private. Maybe y'all ought to hang your own abuse on the people who DID it, instead of projecting it onto George?

                                        All we really know yet is that something SS deemed inappropriate happened, most likely a very long time ago. We do not know (and may never!) what that was. Those above screeching that he "raped children!!!!" are jumping the gun. Blame those who actually abused YOU for your abuse, not people you barely know about whom you know very little.

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                                        • I was taught by a person who yelled. I suppose she was taught by a person who yelled. I have had to work very hard to retrain myself to teach politely, respectfully, to understand there are definitely better ways to demonstrate a point to help a rider. Horribly enough, when a rider is really close to being better or i get intense, i can still be too loud and I have to actually walk a few steps take a breath, stop the rider and explain quietly and respectfully what that thing is. We can often do to others as has been done to us.

                                          I think once the power quotient is reduced, it will be realized that GM legacy is actually horrible. It made a lot of things seem okay that just were not okay, both in the sexualizing of children, and in the ridiculing and bullying in lessons. The manipulation even his praise of one rider was actually to ridicule another. There are other ways to teach well. I am trying to pattern myself after the better way. Changing that kind of behavior is not easy for me. it is however possible, just as following the MAAP policies is possible. Maintaining a good relationship with the kids is possible , even while observing a code of conduct.

                                          just my opinion

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