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George Morris on the SS list

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  • Russian bots are not necesaary, a professional agency crafts a message specifically so people will repeat it because is makes sense in some way, if you do not think too much. They seed the message with the faithful followers who repeat it and then others take it up. People who enjoy arguing the devil's side or wanting to repeat a statement that sounds important jump on board and then a made up "fact" becomes part of the story. Like the single accuser from long ago. Totally made up!

    This is not a conspiracy theory, many people are paid money to do this every day. Its a normal career.

    So before you repeat an arguement or repeat words you read, think! If something is sold as making common sense, but ia very simple or makes a simple set up of one side agaisnt another with no complications, like a childs book, it is probably made up.

    Comment


    • And I also think it is very strange that someone who had child pornography is allowed back in and would like answers to that if I had children still in the sport but I also think an official answer is needed. It is a good opportunity for lies but people should be more intelligent.

      All of these people are at retirement age, yes? I know when you die you are taken off the Safe Sport list, maybe same for full retirement and giving up all professional activities. We do not know.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by MyssMyst View Post

        Where is the post?
        It was deleted within a few days.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by LE View Post
          At the risk of possible repeating a question, but not wanting to wade through 189 pages, can someone tell me how on EARTH Safe Sport reinstated a known sexual predator that was criminally charged??? How on earth did the accuser of GM's end up being reinstated??? I"m sorry, but that is wrong on so many levels. If he is a sexual predator and on the database, he should NOT BE A COACH! I'm sorry for what he endured with and while I have always followed GM's equitation and training methods(and was taught them myself), I DO NOT condone these actions and he should be punished accordingly. But is it just me, or does anyone else here find it very suspicious that the accuser that gets GM banned for life , then himself gets reinstated a week later??? Something is seriously wrong with this picture, and to me, it looks as if Safe Sport cut a deal with said accuser to get GM banned, and reinstated a known sex offender as a result of said deal. That's how I see it, but I'm really hoping I'm wrong.
          You didn't need to wade through 189 pages, I offered a plausible explanation only a few pages back. post #3671

          And charlieTBD, I do not think an “official answer” is needed.

          I think people are making the assumption that one person’s ban is related to another. And people assuming he was taken off because of some plea deal, don’t understand the process. Safesport is currently working on more cases than these two. The director could have been reviewing the evidence on several cases while arbitrators are hearing other cases. In addition Safesport has several lawyers, so several arbitrations could be conducted simultaneously. Just because the removal of one equestrian person from the list coincided with a permanent ban of the other does not mean the two are associated with each other.

          Other equestrians have been on the SS banned list due to a listed on the sex offender registry. They too were removed after an investigation was done.

          For those not familiar with Safe Sport. It uses the following when considering a penalty.
          “B. Considerations
          Factors relevant to determining appropriate sanctions include, without limitation:
          1. Seriousness of the Violation;
          2. The Responding Party’s prior history;
          3. Ages of individuals involved;
          4. Whether the Responding Party poses an ongoing threat to the safety of others;
          5. Voluntary disclosure of offense and/or cooperation by the Responding Party;
          6. Disposition of an investigation by state or federal law authorities;
          7. Real or perceived impact of incident on the Reporting Party, NGB(s) or USOC;
          8. Other mitigating and aggravating circumstances.”


          If you go through the list of factors -
          1. I do not believe anyone filed a complaint against Jonathan. He is on the list due to the sex registry listing. He plead guilty to possession of child pornography. I will not say it is even remotely acceptable; but the possession of child porn verses the sexual assault on a child differ immensely.
          2. Only one incident of possession. He was on probation for 10 years and no further incidents have been reported.
          3. Ages involved is not relevant because there was no incident report filed.
          4. This is the question to be answered…
          5. He pled guilty to possession, he completed his probation, and was cooperating with SS
          6. The possession charge went through the legal system
          7. No reporting party, therefore this does not apply
          8. Unknown (Mitigating circumstance as conditions or happenings which do not excuse or justify criminal conduct, but are considered out of mercy or fairness in deciding the degree of the offense the prosecutor charges or influencing reduction of the penalty upon conviction.) Examples could be genuine remorse, therapy to address the issues, etc.

          If there was no incident report against Jonathan and he was on the list because of the sex registry listing, one could assume SafeSport has evaluated the situation and felt it was appropriate to remove his name.

          As far as the permanent ban:

          1. Sexual assault of a minor – what’s worse than this? Murder? Anything else?
          2. Multiple victims
          3. 30+ man and 13/14 year old boy.
          4. Subjective
          5. Unknown. Perhaps he admits to a sexual relationship but says it was consensual.
          6. Unknown. Safesport does report all claims to the authorities.
          7. Real impact - 12 years of therapy, perceived: sexual abuse as a minor can have a lifelong consequences. Impact on the NGB or USOC- There should be no room in any sport for those who sexually assault minors (or adults).
          8. Denying the seriousness of the offense, the age difference of parties, the relationship of the parties - trainer-/student, if the victim suffered mental injury, multiple occurrences of sexual assault, lack of remorse, amount of harm to Reporting Party, tendency to reoffend, etc.

          As I look at the 2 examples, it becomes clear to me why one person is banned and the other is not.
          Last edited by Keep it Simple; Nov. 24, 2019, 10:18 AM.

          Comment


          • Keep it Simple I surely wish something as concrete as this were posted on the nightmare discussion on the COTH Facebook page.

            Comment


            • fair judy, would it make a difference? I highly doubt it. I hope some people could open their eyes and see there is a great big world beyond equestrian sport. I don't know the facts in this case, but offer a few possible reason for the reversal of the ban.
              Last edited by Keep it Simple; Nov. 24, 2019, 11:50 AM. Reason: Spelling

              Comment


              • Keep It Simple, thank you for taking the time to explain this! I have learned so much from you and others on here. Did you by chance write something about “acme widgets” to explain SafeSport? I can not remember who wrote it and it didn't transfer when I copied it.

                Comment


                • Never mind about the acme widgets question, I figured out how to search all of a sudden. : )

                  Comment



                  • charlieTBD - thanks for giving an excellent explanation of how the PR industry works it’s magic on social media. Quite enlightening. Clearly happening and being repeated... over and over again.

                    I was having a little fun with my Russian bots comment. But seriously... stuff like

                    “There was no DUE PROCESS!”
                    ”It’s only one person’s HERESAY!”
                    ”Why didn’t the ALLEGED victim speak up 50 years ago?!?!”



                    (sidenote... we desperately need a facepalm emoji type of smilie on COTH).

                    Comment


                    • Keep it Simple - well done!

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by rah View Post
                        Keep It Simple, thank you for taking the time to explain this! I have learned so much from you and others on here. Did you by chance write something about “acme widgets” to explain SafeSport? I can not remember who wrote it and it didn't transfer when I copied it.
                        Thank you. The widget example was excellent.

                        So many want to place blame someone other than the abuser. They don't want to accept that their idol may have caused irreparable harm to a child.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by charlieTBD View Post

                          I would bet $100 there is somone coordinating posts somewhere or making suggestions to the faithful flock. Its so obvious to anyone who works in politics or advocating. The words are too similar from too many people
                          Phelps Media did a masterful job of framing the issue very early on. They outed Jonathan Serosi by publishing the time frame and made it seem like he was the only accuser. The people who want to believe in GM seized on this like a dog with a bone.

                          Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
                          EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

                          Comment


                          • The next time someone uses the "hearsay" comment, ask them what is hearsay about the testimony of two direct victims, plus GM's own book. I doubt any objective observer would need more than that to be convinced of the appropriateness of permanent ineligibility.
                            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 Virginia Horse Mom View Post
                              ASB Stars - given the length of the thread, and the fact that so much has been said at this point, and so much extreme reaction has occurred community wide with each step of this case... many of us are struggling to remember earlier details and aren’t going to go look back for early posts.

                              So can you reiterate why you confident there are more recent victims?

                              And about his history - I can’t remember where in the thread it was mentioned, but someone implied GM was probably a victim as a young rider himself. Is that what you are referencing?

                              The whole notion that this behavior has been going on for decades in our sport, with coaches and young students is very sad. I know the present moment is messy and hard... but it is positive that people are finally attempting to address these issues and change the culture.
                              I left the industry in the early 90's. At that time, the stories were unchanged, in fact, I kind of believe that people had become so used to the "george" stories that unless there HAD been someone willing to stand up to him, and point out that they were being abused, it was just accepted. And that is obviously wrong, and what allowed it to keep going.

                              To accuse GM would have been to acknowledge your own behavior in the incident, and who wants to tell about that, when being gay was still so difficult in society? And, then, as now, going after GM could end your career, if you were hoping for one, and make you a pariah in the industry, even if you were just trying to compete.

                              It isn't like you're going to change his behavior. He's a predator, and I am sure that, even now, he believes he can do what he wants to. Sending him to jail would require much more recent reports, and victims who were willing to testify. I just can't see that happening.
                              When someone shows you who they are, BELIEVE them- Maya Angelou
                              www.americansaddlebredsporthorse.net
                              http://www.asbsporthorse.blogspot.com/

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Virginia Horse Mom View Post
                                Since both of the last two folks (LE and wannabedvm) are real posters, have made more than 1 post on these forums ... and the thread has gotten long... I’m going to take your post at face value and not accuse you of being Russian bots, or employees of Phelps Media.

                                Many on this thread agree that the timing of Soresi’s reinstatement is a head scratcher. HOWEVER...

                                There was another victim (who is anonymous) who did offer testimony about GM. There also were apparently MANY witnesses who testified at the proceeding.

                                And then there is the matter of all the statements GM himself made in his own book, Unrelenting. He claimed to have had 10,000 sexual partners. He talked about how relationships between adult men and MUCH younger males were more accepted in other countries, and he admitted to having taking minor students to Studio 54 back in the 70’s. If you know anything about what went on at Studio 54... that’s a bit crazy.

                                Sooooo... given all that... I am admittedly of the opinion that it was not a hard decision... or even a close call... when it came to Safe Sport banning GM. They are an independent organization which specifically DOESN’T take into account the politics and personalities that dominate different sports. They focus on inappropriate, prohibited behavior.

                                Given these facts... why would they need to “cut a deal” with Soresi for his testimony against GM?

                                They didn’t need to. And the idea that Safe Sport has an “agenda” and wanted to “get a big fish”...

                                I don’t but it. They are overwhelmed with the cases coming their way. Huge names from other sports have already been investigated and taken down. Do some reading about Figure Skating and Gymnastics.

                                Safe Sport was not looking for extra work to do, and a massive high profile headache.

                                So I am of the opinion that this was all about poorly thought out timing.

                                And about Soresi... why do all these people continue to call him a “Predator?” He was convicted well over 10 years ago of possession of 17 images of child porn. But there is not an allegation that he actually physically preyed upon a child. He was sentenced to probation in his case, and was put on the sex offender registry for a limited duration... not for life.

                                And... oh yeah... USEF was made aware of his status on the registry over a decade ago... but decided to only suspend his judging license at the time. Not his full membership. He was still allowed to attend shows and coach at shows.

                                I’m not saying any of these aspects of the Soresi case are things Im comfortable with... but I also am not shocked he was reinstated. The other people on the list with lifetime bans seem to all involve “misconduct” with actual human beings... who were underage... and not landed on the lifetime banned list for something like possession of child pornography.

                                Hope this helps you understand other people’s opinion on this issue - that the whole claim of Soresi “cutting a deal” is unlikely.

                                But the timing of his reinstatement coinciding with GM’s appeal failing? Yeah - it’s odd and uncomfortable and makes people ask questions.
                                Re the “big fish” theory it’s important to remember that SafeSport represents
                                ALL Olympic sports and equestrian is far from the highest profile of those. George Morris May indeed be a “big fish” in our world but the sports industry in general and the general public likely have no idea who he is. If the agenda was to “take down” someone influential, SafeSport would have far bigger names from far more prominent sports to choose from. Their agenda is to investigate people who were reported, and to sanction those against whom the evidence is compelling

                                Comment


                                • Originally posted by Virginia Horse Mom View Post
                                  Since both of the last two folks (LE and wannabedvm) are real posters, have made more than 1 post on these forums ... and the thread has gotten long... I’m going to take your post at face value and not accuse you of being Russian bots, or employees of Phelps Media.

                                  Many on this thread agree that the timing of Soresi’s reinstatement is a head scratcher. HOWEVER...

                                  There was another victim (who is anonymous) who did offer testimony about GM. There also were apparently MANY witnesses who testified at the proceeding.

                                  And then there is the matter of all the statements GM himself made in his own book, Unrelenting. He claimed to have had 10,000 sexual partners. He talked about how relationships between adult men and MUCH younger males were more accepted in other countries, and he admitted to having taking minor students to Studio 54 back in the 70’s. If you know anything about what went on at Studio 54... that’s a bit crazy.

                                  Sooooo... given all that... I am admittedly of the opinion that it was not a hard decision... or even a close call... when it came to Safe Sport banning GM. They are an independent organization which specifically DOESN’T take into account the politics and personalities that dominate different sports. They focus on inappropriate, prohibited behavior.

                                  Given these facts... why would they need to “cut a deal” with Soresi for his testimony against GM?

                                  They didn’t need to. And the idea that Safe Sport has an “agenda” and wanted to “get a big fish”...

                                  I don’t but it. They are overwhelmed with the cases coming their way. Huge names from other sports have already been investigated and taken down. Do some reading about Figure Skating and Gymnastics.

                                  Safe Sport was not looking for extra work to do, and a massive high profile headache.

                                  So I am of the opinion that this was all about poorly thought out timing.

                                  And about Soresi... why do all these people continue to call him a “Predator?” He was convicted well over 10 years ago of possession of 17 images of child porn. But there is not an allegation that he actually physically preyed upon a child. He was sentenced to probation in his case, and was put on the sex offender registry for a limited duration... not for life.

                                  And... oh yeah... USEF was made aware of his status on the registry over a decade ago... but decided to only suspend his judging license at the time. Not his full membership. He was still allowed to attend shows and coach at shows.

                                  I’m not saying any of these aspects of the Soresi case are things Im comfortable with... but I also am not shocked he was reinstated. The other people on the list with lifetime bans seem to all involve “misconduct” with actual human beings... who were underage... and not landed on the lifetime banned list for something like possession of child pornography.

                                  Hope this helps you understand other people’s opinion on this issue - that the whole claim of Soresi “cutting a deal” is unlikely.

                                  But the timing of his reinstatement coinciding with GM’s appeal failing? Yeah - it’s odd and uncomfortable and makes people ask questions.
                                  Ok, thank you for clearing up a few things. I did know there was an anonymous accuser as well as Soresi, which is why I believe the ban for George is correct. He committed the crime, he now has to pay for those crimes. I believe the statue of limitations has run out for any criminal proceedings in regards to legal action outside of Safe Sport.

                                  But regarding Soresi's reinstatement--having child porn images, I would be very guarded that this is something he is battling with and could escalate. 10 years ago doesn't mean he isn't cured. The fact he was found with such images and is on the database....I'm sorry, I still think it is wrong to reinstate him as a coach. If Safe Sport's job is to protect chidren from predators, I would think that this would be one of them. Just my feeling on this matter.

                                  While I was trained in the style of Mr Morris and followed his training methods and enjoyed watching his clinics online from Florida, this is a lesson learned that no one is beyond reproach. To even brag about it in his book also seems very arrogant---that he felt he was beyond punishment is beyond me. The old saying 'it was a different time' is a cop out. Any respectable adult and coach would darn well know you DO NOT SLEEP WITH YOUR STUDENTS!!! And you DO NOT SLEEP WITH MINORS! End of discussion. :/

                                  To this day, as I learn from different coaching classes I take, about 10 years ago it was advised to ALL coaches that you should ask a rider if you could touch their body to correct it for riding purposes. Regardless of gender or age, Since then, I always, always ask riders if I can touch their leg---given that some corrections could be misunderstood. It makes total sense and I will continue to do this. I even had a 70 year old client who messaged me after a lesson, thanking me for asking her.

                                  We have to learn as we go and one thing is, I want any student/rider to know my goal is to teach them and educate them about horses and riding. That's IT!
                                  Last edited by LE; Nov. 24, 2019, 06:33 PM. Reason: I need to proof read before posting!

                                  Comment


                                  • Originally posted by BigMama1 View Post

                                    Re the “big fish” theory it’s important to remember that SafeSport represents
                                    ALL Olympic sports and equestrian is far from the highest profile of those. George Morris May indeed be a “big fish” in our world but the sports industry in general and the general public likely have no idea who he is. If the agenda was to “take down” someone influential, SafeSport would have far bigger names from far more prominent sports to choose from. Their agenda is to investigate people who were reported, and to sanction those against whom the evidence is compelling
                                    It's funny because after I wrote my post, I realized Safe Sport is ALL sports, not just equestrian. It just felt that the timing of George's ban and Soresi's reinstatement was just...too suspicious. That and I've been watching way too much Law and Order SVU.

                                    Comment


                                    • Originally posted by LE View Post

                                      Ok, thank you for clearing up a few things. I did know there was an anonymous accuser as well as Soresi, which is why I believe the ban for George is correct. He committed the crime, he now has to pay for those crimes. I believe the statue of limitations has run out for any criminal proceedings in regards to legal action outside of Safe Sport.

                                      But regarding Soresi's reinstatement--having child porn images, I would be very guarded that this is something he is battling with and could escalate. 10 years ago doesn't mean he isn't cured. The fact he was found with such images and is on the database....I'm sorry, I still think it is wrong to reinstate him as a coach. If Safe Sport's job is to protect chidren from predators, I would think that this would be one of them. Just my feeling on this matter.

                                      While I was trained in the style of Mr Morris and followed his training methods and enjoyed watching his clinics online from Florida, this is a lesson learned that no one is beyond reproach. To even brag about it in his book also seems very arrogant---that he felt he was beyond punishment is beyond me. The old saying 'it was a different time' is a cop out. Any respectable adult and coach would darn well know you DO NOT SLEEP WITH YOUR STUDENTS!!! And you DO NOT SLEEP WITH MINORS! End of discussion. :/

                                      To this day, as I learn from different coaching classes I take, about 10 years ago it was advised to ALL coaches that you should ask a rider if you could touch their body to correct it for riding purposes. Regardless of gender or age, Since then, I always, always ask riders if I can touch their leg---given that some corrections could be misunderstood. It makes total sense and I will continue to do this. I even had a 70 year old client who messaged me after a lesson, thanking me for asking her.

                                      We have to learn as we go and one thing is, I want any student/rider to know my goal is to teach them and educate them about horses and riding. That's IT!
                                      Seriously....I think "hands off the kids" has been generally understood by MOST of the general populace for decades at least.

                                      If GM were their kids' high school English teacher - would these defenders still be as vociferous?

                                      Interesting too that some of the same people throwing tantrums over the new FEI helmet rules are also loudly slanging SafeSport.

                                      Comment


                                      • Originally posted by LE View Post

                                        Ok, thank you for clearing up a few things. I did know there was an anonymous accuser as well as Soresi, which is why I believe the ban for George is correct. He committed the crime, he now has to pay for those crimes. I believe the statue of limitations has run out for any criminal proceedings in regards to legal action outside of Safe Sport.

                                        But regarding Soresi's reinstatement--having child porn images, I would be very guarded that this is something he is battling with and could escalate. 10 years ago doesn't mean he isn't cured. The fact he was found with such images and is on the database....I'm sorry, I still think it is wrong to reinstate him as a coach. If Safe Sport's job is to protect chidren from predators, I would think that this would be one of them. Just my feeling on this matter.

                                        While I was trained in the style of Mr Morris and followed his training methods and enjoyed watching his clinics online from Florida, this is a lesson learned that no one is beyond reproach. To even brag about it in his book also seems very arrogant---that he felt he was beyond punishment is beyond me. The old saying 'it was a different time' is a cop out. Any respectable adult and coach would darn well know you DO NOT SLEEP WITH YOUR STUDENTS!!! And you DO NOT SLEEP WITH MINORS! End of discussion. :/
                                        Thanks for a thoughtful response, and not taking my initial accusations that you might be a Phelps Media plant or a Russian bot personally. It was juvenile of me. I was letting off steam. This has been a long thread and the comments on Facebook this week have made me want to gouge my eyeballs out with a spoon.

                                        So... I will admit to having not spent time googling and checking it... but why do you keep on saying Soresi is still on the sex offender registry? He was originally convicted in the State of New York back in 2005 or 2007, for possession of child porn. He plead guilty and cooperated. ANOTHER person on the Safe Sport list, Tom Navarro, was also originally convicted in the State of New York. For a 3rd degree felony. Involving sodomy. It apparently involved an underaged girl. He also plead guilty, and also got probation. He also went on the sex offender registry.

                                        But people in the State of New York routinely come OFF the sex offender registry after a specific duration. Tom Navarro did. After ten years. Then... he appealed to the State of Virginia to remove him from their registry, and he won. After he came off the registry in NY, VA removed him as well.

                                        So are you sure that Soresi is still listed in the Sex Offender database and actively required to register as a Sex offender? In NY or elsewhere? I’m not so sure about that.

                                        Believe me... I do understand your discomfort with the child porn. I have opinions about it, and wouldn’t hire anyone to coach my kids who had, in fact, sought out child porn and been convicted for having it on a computer. But we don’t know the details of his conviction. 17 images is a truly odd finding... EXTREMELY atypical for such cases. Normally, people with these issues are found to have 100’s or 1000’a of images. And law enforcement did investigate this, they did have his computer and did examine it, Soresi did cooperate and eventually plead guilty, and the finding was... 16 images and 1 video. We don’t know details beyond that... and I do t want to.

                                        But honestly, given that law enforcement AND Safe Sport have investigated this, it was over 10 years ago, Soresi’s cooperated each time, plead guilty, got counseling, and served the duration of his entire plea without re-offending...

                                        And oh yeah - is a victim of sexual abuse as a minor himself...

                                        Honestly... I am not outraged at all that Safe Sport re-instated him. He’s attended years of counseling. If he was still a threat to children, and it’s unknown that he ever was a threat to children... it’s only known he was in possession of child porn... the licensed counselor who treated him would have informed authorities. After all... he was on probation for 10 years.

                                        But again... would I personally jump right up and hire him to coach my kids? Probably not. But I think a lot of people, including law enforcement, professional licensed therapists, probation officers, and Safe Sport investigators have all looked st him and his crime and the evidence and his case in detail... and he has served out the terms of his plea deal. And apparently not the-offended. And at some point... we have to go forward.

                                        Safe Sport looked at the other guy I mentioned. The one who plead guilty of 3rd degree sodomy. He’s also served out his plea deal and been taken off the sex offender registry. He also attempted to appeal Safe Sport’s ban. But they made a different ruling in that case and denied his appeal and he is still banned for life.

                                        What that tells me is that they are looking at each case in front of them closely and trying to render the best decisions they can. That’s all I’m asking for.

                                        No system will ever be perfect. Our justice system CERTAINLY has its share of challenges. That’s life. But honestly... I think it’s kind of odd to look at the Soresi case and see evidence of flaws in Safe Sport. I see evidence that Safe Sport considered lots of factual information, and reinstated someone who has demonstrated that they take these issues seriously and is making a good faith, thorough, responsible effort to be a good member of society.

                                        I hope that makes sense.

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                                        • I have been reading this thread from the beginning & just made an account now.

                                          I can’t understand how people can say they stand with a child molester. I started riding H/J as a kid & ended up in my 20’s at a barn that did a few A shows a year. I heard the rumors & never met the man.

                                          The comments on Facebook are disgusting. My heart breaks for the victims. I’m really disappointed in how some equestrians are acting between GM & RG being permanently banned.

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