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George Morris on the SS list

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  • Originally posted by laiqalasse View Post
    Holy cow. I just read all 43 pages of this in one go and it's now 3:21 in the morning and my eyes are going a little crossed at this point. I don't really have much to add to this thread except a thought I had while reading.

    I've seen a few people on here wondering why people would defend/stand with GM at this point, and I saw responses saying that some of his supporters are likely abusers, too, which is very likely true. And another response or two stating that people like to be associated with big names/people with prestige and don't want to admit that they associated with the wrong person. There's likely a lot of that, too. What occurred to me is that there's probably another smaller set, and those are the people who were abused by GM and/or people like him, who don't want to, or can't, admit that what happened to them was actually abuse. They've told themselves that it's just "what happens" and "what you have to do" to succeed. And if they're forced to admit that what he did/does is abuse, then they have to admit to themselves that they were abused, too. Some people simply can't do that.
    That is very likely true.

    Comment


    • Originally posted by TooManyBays View Post

      But, at the same time, I’m sure your friends conviction wasn’t on the front pages and ‘the talk’ of the equestrian internet.
      I think these BNTs are in shock and disbelief over hearing their friend did something like this. There is a lot of thoughts of ‘I never saw that behavior and I’ve known him for x years!’
      They will cool off, probably after the appeal is done, and come to realize that criminals don’t commit crimes in ways that get caught. If a person is sloppy, they would have gone to jail years ago, SS or not. SS wasn’t created for the obvious abuse situations.

      If you go through my posts, especially from the Rob Gage thread, my original reaction to SS was ‘this can’t be true. SS must be corrupt/wrong/incompetent.’ But after things cooled off, I realized that not everything has to have some sort of agenda behind it. Sometimes, people do bad stuff and get caught. I think that a lot of these BNTs are gonna feel the same way in a few days.
      Surely more than a few of GM's friends and acquaintances aren't surprised. Seriously, no one who knew him well was wondering when the lid was going to blow off that can of snakes?

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Virginia Horse Mom View Post

        I actually have great respect for other disciplines. Crashing Boar’s initial post took me to task because I praised Kristin Medall Simpson... etc for her two public posts on Facebook concerning the RG case, and now GM.

        I made a statement praising her as a professional who has demonstrated empathy and compassion in her statements, and a focus on the future of the sport. And I think that her voice has been unique and powerful and she’s someone I would support if she were ever to do a clinic in my area (I believe she has before).

        Crashing Boar them posted a condescending response schooling me on toughness, and what upper level coaches are like, and the narrow margins of error and life and death stakes involved in jumping “big stix” and the big money stakes involved in Grand Prix jumping. And there was a little bit about the free market in there, and how people like me who didn’t understand tuff and gruff coaching at the upper levels, and tough elite sports of all varieties could ask our brothers for insight (wow) and take our money to coaches with the traits we seek. Apparently coaches who “sugarcoat” things.

        I found this bizarre and insulting and responded. I’m also coming back to our sport after years off... and am by no means an upper level rider. Nor do I aspire to be. Although I’m fortunate to ride with a great coach. I did dig back at Crashing Boar though, as I have spent a lot of time around a lot of people who are involved in plenty of dangerous things.

        I wasn't attempting to put down other disciplines. I was attempting to mock the condescending statements initially directed at me by someone who decided that I wasn’t “tough” and didn’t understand “life and death stakes” at the upper levels simply because I commented about how empathy in a professional is a good thing, and something the industry needs more of.
        Fair enough. I just think you can (and did!) make your point without that one statement that I felt was a bit unfair. And I probably overreacted.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by laiqalasse View Post
          And another response or two stating that people like to be associated with big names/people with prestige and don't want to admit that they associated with the wrong person. There's likely a lot of that, too. What occurred to me is that there's probably another smaller set, and those are the people who were abused by GM and/or people like him, who don't want to, or can't, admit that what happened to them was actually abuse. They've told themselves that it's just "what happens" and "what you have to do" to succeed. And if they're forced to admit that what he did/does is abuse, then they have to admit to themselves that they were abused, too. Some people simply can't do that.
          RSBM

          This is such a good point, it can very true people go through life not realizing what was happening to them was/is abuse. Sometimes the wake up call can be too much to handle.
          Boss Mare Eventing Blog

          Comment


          • Originally posted by TooManyBays View Post

            ...I think these BNTs are in shock and disbelief over hearing their friend did something like this. There is a lot of thoughts of ‘I never saw that behavior and I’ve known him for x years!’
            I think that many of GM's close associates did indeed know exactly what was going on. I think most just put their own spin on it so that they could continue to associate with him without suffering mental pain. A lot of them probably convinced themselves that the relationships were consensual and just mentally shied away from any acknowledgement that a 12/13/14 year old can't give consent. Some I think probably simply refused to believe what was going on even when the evidence was in clear view.

            For many, I don't think it's shock and disbelief so much as it's a refusal to give up their own denial because if they are forced to do so, what does that say about them? That they knew about and condoned child molestation? No one wants to believe that about themselves.

            "Facts are meaningless. You can use facts to prove anything
            that's even remotely true."

            Homer Simpson

            Comment


            • Originally posted by erinmeri View Post

              Fair enough. I just think you can (and did!) make your point without that one statement that I felt was a bit unfair. And I probably overreacted.
              No worries! I probably overreacted multiple times yesterday in posts :-)

              This whole topic has been absolutely in our faces on all social media and the news for the last few weeks... I find it really upsetting on a lot of levels. The crazy shootings across the country and at the farm in NJ last night are a wake up call for everyone to breathe and calm down.

              Comment


              • I doubt that the people who Stand with George are shocked or surprised at all.
                At this level, these people all know each other.

                They all knew who he is and what he is. They chose to look the other way because it was better for their careers, or because they didn't think it mattered.

                Well, it does matter and while I understand defending a friend , I will never understand condoning or defending the indefensible.





                Maybe a COTHer can create a Facebook group and call it
                "I Spit on George"



                Certified Guacophobe

                Comment


                • After sleeping on it, and chatting over coffee with my better half about the whole reaction to the GHM Safe Sport ban... and all the people both professional and peripheral who have signed on to “I Stand With George”

                  I’ve come to the conclusion that the reaction is proof positive of exactly WHY Safe Sport is needed.

                  Obviously policing our own sport community wouldn’t have worked. Everyone heard about rumors and incidents with GHM for decades. Yet look at the recent reaction!

                  It it has to be an independent outside body. Sports are no better at dealing with this problem internally than the Catholic Church was.

                  And on that note... I think we should stop arguing about criminal sanction vs. banning from a private club. A lifetime ban because of Safe Sport is analogous in many ways to a priest getting defrocked.

                  Comment


                  • When even the lowliest and smurfiest of smurfs (me) heard the rumors and snickers FOR YEARS starting in the 70s, there’s some pretty powerful denial going on.

                    Some people see the emperor has no clothes, others are clamoring for the name of his tailor.
                    The plural of anecdote is not data.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by 2tempe View Post
                      And the Dressage shooting mentioned in post 850 is just beyond weird. Short version appears to be trainer-client arrangement gone wrong but with numerous twists and turns. Hopefully client will survive.
                      From the little bit of train-wreck watching I just did, I'm willing to bet a small amount of money it was self defense.


                      "smile a lot can let us ride happy,it is good thing"

                      My CANTER blog.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by dannyboy View Post
                        @ Tiramit I attended clinics in the sense that I sat in the stands and watched. Occasionally, the organizer asked me if I would help move jumps. I said that I never would ride in any of his clinics because I wouldn't put up with the verbal abuse he dished out. I think I said that several times. I do not think that makes me complicit more than any one else who watched and didn't speak up about their own children or students.
                        Sitting in the stands at a GM clinic costs money. Each attendee is supposed to have a ticket. You or someone else paid GM each time you attended, meaning that he made money off of you 8-9 times after you decided he was a bully and touched a child in an inappropriate way.

                        This is my point. Thinking a person is a bully or sexual abuser or horse killer or horse drugger or horse selling crook or _______ while still financially supporting, not reporting, said person is not only hurting people / horses, it's hurting our sport.

                        SS is an aftermath solution. It issues out a ruling after the victims come forward. AFTER the abuse. Why aren't we stopping these monsters before there are victimS? Why did so many people let them carry on for decades? It wasn't that people didn't know about abuse. It wasn't because the people in charge are too powerful.... The Catholic Church was taken down. The USEF is a speck in comparison.

                        I'm sickened by the SS rulings. I'm sickened by the division within its membership ranks and the lists posted online of who's on what side. Yes, I'm participating here and I blame myself for my small role in the above, but I'm looking to the future and will be sure to take gossip seriously.
                        "Whether you think you can or think you can't, you are right." -Henry Ford

                        Comment


                        • The link to purchase your very own GM Talking Action Figure is still live. I wonder how long that will last. One of the featured phrases is "You're very beautiful. I hope you have a brain." However the classic has to be, "With every detail of horsemanship there is a right and a wrong. Darlings, I have no time for wrong."
                           

                          Comment


                          • Lets not forget that Rob Gage's suspension and verdict set on him by SS ultimately happened because he wrote a letter to the minor who then reported him, admitting to the sexual misconduct. His case was not an act of he said, she said and SS ultimately sided with the female victim, not at all. He was caught admitting to sexual misconduct with a minor (regardless of how many years ago it happened), he was reported, and the right ruling was placed upon him. He then committed suicide. For all we know, the victim could've been compiling her evidence and taking it to the courts against him, or the police which further fueled the result to end his life. That type of conviction is even more life altering than a SS ban.

                            There are other posters here and on facebook who have stated that they have been a part of an SS investigation due to false reports/rumor mill. That entire scenario can be very hurtful for all involved. But they told their honest side of the story to investigators and the investigation was dropped once investigators found no probable cause or significant evidence to substantiate the report. If SS was running-a-muck and falsely suspending individuals based on hearsay, this type of result wouldn't be the case.

                            SS does not investigate just the victim and there is a process these investigators must follow. I am not one to tote government organizations and government control. But these investigators are not individuals pulled off the street corner and trained for the job. These are people investigating murders and high violence crime for police departments and such in previous jobs. SS has given a voice to the victim who was previously silenced by their abuser and organization. A report was made, and an investigation ensued. How can anyone label that a "witch hunt". How can anyone justify stating to leave GM alone on the basis that he said these accusations happened 50 years ago. Does 50 years ago make the crime irrelevant? Does the fact that you had a positive relationship or experience with GM eliminate any wrongdoing of his? Murderers had/have friends too, people who couldn't believe they committed those crimes, does that mean they were good people and not murderers?

                            I have faith in the system and that a thorough investigation was performed on both sides. I am sure those details are well known to both the victim and GM as well as USEF. Why would anyone believe that the investigation into GM was one taken lightly, especially considering his stature in the industry going into this?

                            Comment


                            • I think it really comes down to this: People are afraid they will be shunned if they do not publically support him. Whether they "believe" the accusations or support him in their own personal thoughts is up for speculations. He has an aura of a cult leader and these are his followers.
                              Save a life...be an organ donor! Visit www.Transplantbuddies.org

                              Comment


                              • I'd like to say something to those who who wonder why we didn't do anything back then, why we kept quiet and then blame some of us for the ongoing abuse that occurred. I was there. I spent most of my teenage years at Cedar Lodge Farm riding and working both while Victor and Holly Hugo-Vidal were there and after the Reserpine scandal and their move to California.

                                It was a different time. Not in what was acceptable behavior but in what one might do about it and what people got away with. I was a kid and while I heard all the rumors, saw a lot of horrible treatment of horses and received plenty of warnings, I had no clue what I could or should do. In retrospect, as an adult my understanding of what I saw happening around me leaves me well and truly shaken and there are very few 'gods' in the hunter/jumper world I would allow within 100 yards of a horse I owned.

                                But back to my point...we did do what we thought we could. We moved in packs. We warned each other. There were a variety of people we never left our friends alone with. Our mothers guarded us. I can think of a handful of the top equitation riders of that day whose mothers had eyes on at every moment. My mother could spot a predator a mile away and warned me quite specifically about Jimmy Williams. My mother taught me how to operate safely in the world as it was then as did the mothers of many of my friends. And if things even threatened to go south they stepped in. Not everyone was as fortunate in having a savvy parent watching. But it is how a lot of us got to ride at a fairly high level with those who were considered the best, but stay safe.

                                We did the best we could to take care of the horses. I personally iced the face of a mare who was subjected to a Chambon made of baling twine. Was pretty sure it or something worse would happen to her again so I bought her and removed her from Cedar Lodge. The scars never went away. The abuse was pervasive. Doing our best was all we thought we could do. We knew enough to know the risks but never enough to report or who to even report to. Because of all I saw, I left that world in the very early 80s for eventing and have never gone back.

                                So none of this surprises me, it's about time. And while I have long hoped that many of the 'great horseman' of that era learned and actually became great horseman in time, given what I saw back then, they would have to be very different people for it to be true.
                                Kate

                                Comment


                                • Originally posted by Tiramit View Post

                                  Sitting in the stands at a GM clinic costs money. Each attendee is supposed to have a ticket. You or someone else paid GM each time you attended, meaning that he made money off of you 8-9 times after you decided he was a bully and touched a child in an inappropriate way.

                                  This is my point. Thinking a person is a bully or sexual abuser or horse killer or horse drugger or horse selling crook or _______ while still financially supporting, not reporting, said person is not only hurting people / horses, it's hurting our sport.

                                  SS is an aftermath solution. It issues out a ruling after the victims come forward. AFTER the abuse. Why aren't we stopping these monsters before there are victimS? Why did so many people let them carry on for decades? It wasn't that people didn't know about abuse. It wasn't because the people in charge are too powerful.... The Catholic Church was taken down. The USEF is a speck in comparison.

                                  I'm sickened by the SS rulings. I'm sickened by the division within its membership ranks and the lists posted online of who's on what side. Yes, I'm participating here and I blame myself for my small role in the above, but I'm looking to the future and will be sure to take gossip seriously.
                                  I'm not sure why you keep going after Dannyboy who at least has had the cajones to admit to continuing to attend after seeing things that appeared (at the time, or in hindsight) to be troubling.
                                  Yo/Yousolong April 23rd, 1985- April 15th, 2014

                                  http://notesfromadogwalker.com/2012/...m-a-sanctuary/

                                  Comment


                                  • The big surprise for me of this thread is how few people are actually defending GM. It seems like just a few years ago his name would be mentioned with reverence by local trainers, and he was constantly invoked as the ultimate authority on all things hunter/jumper.

                                    How the mighty have fallen. My take is that his decades of belittling and insulting riders have left few people willing to stand up for him. Karma in action.

                                    Even many of the statements that could be viewed as supporting him are tepid at best. People are saying they hope for a fair process or will wait to make a judgment... but no one is saying, "He was such a kind, good person who always tried to do the right thing... there is no way he would ever deliberately hurt a child..."

                                    Comment


                                    • Originally posted by HLMom View Post
                                      The big surprise for me of this thread is how few people are actually defending GM. It seems like just a few years ago his name would be mentioned with reverence by local trainers, and he was constantly invoked as the ultimate authority on all things hunter/jumper.

                                      How the mighty have fallen. My take is that his decades of belittling and insulting riders have left few people willing to stand up for him. Karma in action.

                                      Even many of the statements that could be viewed as supporting him are tepid at best. People are saying they hope for a fair process or will wait to make a judgment... but no one is saying, "He was such a kind, good person who always tried to do the right thing... there is no way he would ever deliberately hurt a child..."
                                      All of that and more is going on in the FB group. People writing letters to the white house and signing petitions and cancelling their USEF memberships etc.
                                      McDowell Racing Stables

                                      Home Away From Home

                                      Comment


                                      • Originally posted by ladyj79 View Post

                                        you are misunderstanding: it's really wacky that Katie was having a friend post "hi this is Katie..." as if Katie does not have access or a platform, particularly given a) the content of her message and b) the scrutiny the entire situation is under c) her past readiness to slag people publicly and the guarantee that any number of outlets would have published her latest blaaaaaaaaaah

                                        You don't have to think it's weird, I do.
                                        What did Katie say?

                                        Never mind, I found it.
                                        Basically Katie is saying that since she didn't personally witness any sexual abuse then it couldn't have happened.
                                        "Can you imagine what I would do if I could do all I can?" Sun Tzu
                                        Semantics

                                        Comment


                                        • Originally posted by ladyj79 View Post
                                          Judy, frankly the process did work.

                                          It has concluded and found George in violation.

                                          He is appealing, as is his right, but that definitely does not at all diminish the findings and conclusions of the process.

                                          We are at exactly the same place as we were with the Rob Gage case, and this is exactly the behaviour that compelled victims to come forward as they had no obligation to do and literally put themselves in physical and emotional harms way to quell the insanity. which it didnt. victims are still lying opportunists murdering legends.

                                          This is no different. George is not special.
                                          Exactly!

                                          It's so disheartening to see the same faulty arguments recycling over and over again throughout the Rob Gage and George Morris discussions.
                                          "Facts are meaningless. You can use facts to prove anything
                                          that's even remotely true."

                                          Homer Simpson

                                          Comment

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