From Shame To Justice and Redemption

There is this belief being pushed in different circles that the use of shaming achieves nothing of worth.  Instead it dehumanizes the human spirit, further pushing that person into despair.  I do not believe this to be the case when justice is involved.  Justice as it pertains to the current society is a must.  Whether that is thru the current court and judiciary system, or thru the eyes of those people who feel the need of recompense in non-traditional ways.

Currently people are on the side of the current trend of shaming, or against it and hoping for the courts.  What is not mentioned strongly enough is that there truly exists frustrations in the public when it comes to our judiciary system.   The current news of how 24 people have been convicted out of 1100 arrested at theG20 Summit Riots in Toronto is what frustrates people.

So while the one side sits frustrated and hoping that things get better, the other side has accepted that in our world of social-media public shaming occurs whether a webpage is made about it or not.  One form of justice waits for the courts, while for some the recompense begins when shame has been laid.  Once satisfied, that’s where consequences have been laid out, and the road to redemption begins.

This site exists to provide shaming, but it also exists to provide healing for our city, those injured, and even those who committed offense.  The healing of our city shall take time as will those injured by this event.  Angry emotions were being shared and vented at such a rate that at this time I had to limit comments to registered readers only.  Those against shaming were also directly inciting and posting against the very frustrated people I mentioned earlier.  Both sides of this mass of people were hindered in their ability to also begin healing by fighting amongst each other when only days earlier they were united in cheering for our beloved city, and team the Vancouver Canucks.

Is it too early for those injured to give up their anger?  Time will tell as each of us is a different being and differing forms of injury had occurred.  What will help I believe is for those who were caught, and were involved in some form of participation in the riots is to come forth and turn themselves in.  Their photos are already out there and someone will know who they are.  Also, for those who have felt the sting and spotlight of being made publicly shamed online, I believe that they can make amends.

Despite what everyone keeps saying (and even my own words at one point) now, it is only the person who was involved in the Vancouver riots that does absolutely nothing to repair the damage done thru restitution, community service, the judiciary system, and in general being a good productive citizen that will remain shunned and despised.  Every other person who has come forward already such as Nathan and Camille the process for them has begun.  Whether at this time while emotions are still running high people accept this as sincere that is another question.  Forgiveness is in our nature, so long as there is a perceived correction of what they had done wrong, and it is sincere in our eyes.

How this relates to my site (and certainly anyone else currently featured on it or in the future) is that while it is a tool for public shaming, it must end at redemption for those who seek it.  This is what makes us Canadian.  Now, I must reiterate this isn’t about Captain Vancouver going soft.  I still believe that there will be amongst those photos, people who actually couldn’t care less if their picture and name was plastered on billboards on the streets.

So while some have this fear that if they’re featured on this site, they will be forever carrying that dreaded scarlet letter, they should also know that there also exists its unmentioned redemptive side.  Redemption that acknowledges any news, apologies, and stories of the positive things they are doing will be noted.  So while I have mentioned before that an employer can google someone’s name and consequences may occur, that will happen whether my site exists or not.  Anonymity and digital foot prints ended when sites like Facebook became live.  With that scenario, it is imperative that justice and redemption for all have a chance to occur.  Should I then have positive information in the future to come from people like Nathan and Camille, I am duty bound to help in the fulfillment of what  is just and fair

I am reminded of the hiring policies which are well-known for our policing forces. Even amongst these men and women, there exists those who at some point in their lives committed chargeable offenses.  Now it can be debated whether we hire only pure saints to be police officers, but we all know that won’t happen.  How they hire those with past indiscretions is they view their personal records and resumes, check references as they interview their family, friends, co-workers etc.  At that point if everything checks clear, that person goes thru the process to become a police officer.  I see no difference here for those who were once shamed, that they can regain their reputations.

Does this mean I must remove them from the site?  At this point I don’t think it will serve good purpose for the digital imprint for everyone outed and named is far larger than the few I have on my site.  This is where news media and bloggers should fact check and report that those 1,000,000 photos floating around are on other sites not my own and what they do is completely different from what is the purpose of my blog.  By keeping them on this site, this blog then serves a greater purpose and chance at showcasing their redemption.  Instead of a google search sending someone to photos only depicting the negative aspects of the historical online record, they will be sent here instead.

What about everyone else?  There are many more photos that can be posted on the site and they will be at some point as they are properly assessed to make sure I do not make a mistake.  If those who participated and are featured never come forward, or never make an apology to be added alongside to their name, that will be online for anyone to see in the future.  If you were at the riots and know your photo is being circulated but feel secure that “nothing in the courts” will happen to you, remember that at some point it may end up here.

**All attempts have been made to insure all information on this page is accurate.  The author does not endorse any of the comments of the users of this site.  If you feel any information on this site is inaccurate please contact CaptainVancouver with the subject line “CORRECTION”.  LINK TO DISCLAIMER HERE.**

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~ by captainvancouver on June 22, 2011.

29 Responses to “From Shame To Justice and Redemption”

  1. Well said. Even a sincere apology does not reverse the mistake or undo the damage done, but it’s a step in the right direction, and I’m glad you’ll be making a public note of the steps some of these people have made towards redemption. Hopefully they will serve as an example to others to do the right thing and come forward publicly.

    And to those who don’t apologize, then let this blog be a record of that choice, too.

  2. I agree with everything you’ve said and hope that with reduced or removed comments, you will have the time to update people’s stories with their apologies, whether or not they have turned themselves in, and what they have done to pay back the community for their very public indiscretions.

    For now, those who have shamed Vancouver in the eyes of the world deserve to be shamed by Vancouver. The next step is their decision (as was the decision to riot). I’m sure those that are good kids who made a mistake will find a way to make up for it.

  3. Thx for your both your comments. One of the initial thoughts I had when starting this blog was to potentially give pause to certain demographics of people to think before acting. There is all this talk amongst politicans and the media about how they can prevent this from ever happening again. My opinion is that everyone blames everyone else without looking at the individual. I almost let Vancouver hear my voice on Talk 1040 today. They were having a segment on how people were thinking about the Vancouver Riots and I actually got irritated to the point of just listening callers and the hosts constantly bringing up how it was the police, or the politicians, or the anarchists etc…I called in to give my take on things. When the switchboard guy answered and he asked me for my name, when I said Captain Vancouver he snorted a laugh and hung up on me lol. When I cooled down and listened more, I never once heard that individuals made their mind up to do something wrong first and foremost. If people wish to play the “mob mentality” card after that, then those people are just sheeple I think. The last time I was wearing a lemming suit for halloween and everyone dancing on the balcony started jumping off one by one, I took the stairs.

  4. Listen Capt, I appreciate all you have done, the ORIGINAL mandate of this site is awesome, but you’ve had three days of this push and pull moral nonsense with accompining mainpage posts and I’ve had enough. Are you going to call out any other rioters/looters on here or what?? If not, I’m done coming here.

    Nonetheless, thanks for all you’ve done.

    • More posts are inevitable, however I think it’s important that another mis-naming incident is avoided and Capt. is very careful with how he labels people. This website is a sledgehammer and you don’t just swing it around wildly.

      Capt. is talking about all the morality and goals of this site because it, and other sites like it, have been attacked in the media the past few days. Everyone needs to understand that this site has a redemptive side to it and its more than just a place to smear a person’s reputation, which is what the ultra-liberals are claiming.

    • Have patience, RT.

      This is big stuff; a lot of people are on the fence as to whether sites such as this are a good thing or bad. Personally, I think this site is a good thing… but not unequivocally so. There is a responsible way to proceed here; the irresponsible way is clearly not an option.

      Captain Van has so far handled his massive responsibilities pretty well, taking a path that meets his mandate but is also socially responsible.

      For instance, his decision to vet comments that incite hatred, followed by his decision to keep the comments limited to those who register, reflect the even keel with which he’s proceeding. Our freedom to speak out is being maintained, but without carte blanche to act like irresponsible louts that merely serve to hurt the cause that begat this website in the first place.

      Give him a couple days to sort things out, and to determine the right path to take from this point forward. It’s the least we can do.

  5. Hi Captain Vancouver,
    I really appreciate what you have written here. Personally I have been a Canucks fan since I was 3, and love my team very much. When I was 17 I was down town during the riots of 1994. Me and a friend went downtown to celebrate the Canucks season and it turned into a very scary night.
    The entire mob mentality excuse is just that, an excuse. I have a degree to explain that and also I wasn’t really an angel when I was a kid, but the 94 riots were horrible. My friend and I were caught downtown trying to get home. A cop threw tear gas near a man (who was with his very young son) I grabbed his young son and wrapped my coat around him and calmed him down asking him about Trevor Linden etc. His father was able to wash his eyes out when another officer came by with water and because of that small gesture I did to calm down his son, the kind man drove me and my friend home.
    I never felt the urge to smash a window or run into a store to steal. I am far from perfect (especially as a teen) but I knew what was important even then.
    Our justice system in Canada currently is a joke. I really hope that Vancouver will grow up as a city and Canada as a country because of this.
    Recently when I have had conversations with people about the riots a large majority of them want to forget about it. This should not come as a shock as basically all of North America (aside from the native population) are all products of cut off from families and issues in countries of origin. As a society we are polite (to a fault) to sweep issues under a rug, attack and blame others rather then looking at the underneath issues of what is really going on.
    We have a massive issue in this city of unexpressed rage which came out on wednesday.
    I was a part of the clean up crew that went into the city the next morning hungover and all to help begin to heal my broken heart.
    Because our government has failed to provide strict laws regarding what happened, we the people need to each take responsibility towards sending a clear message that this behaviour is not acceptable. I am glad to hear you will be posting apologies, as I believe it is vital in order for all of us to heal, including the [aledged] criminals.
    Because yes we are all human and part of being human is making mistakes. It takes a certain type of person to admit mistakes with authenticity and apologize with courage.
    Einstein was once asked: What is the most important question to have an answer for
    He replied: Is the universe a friendly place?
    Guess it depends on who you ask.

  6. Good site, but less talk more pics!

  7. I am one of those people who is sick to f*cking death of criminals getting lenient sentences. That is to say that nearly all criminals should be getting either more jail time, higher fines, longer probation periods and should have to pay restitution to their victims. In Canada, if you commit murder and are actually convicted of murder as opposed to some lesser charge, you might get 30 years in prison.
    Of that sentence, you might actually do 8 to 10 years. Meanwhile, the vistim is dead forever and their friends and family are living (or trying to live with the loss) forever.
    More and more, you hear of paroled convicts escaping halfway houses or reoffending.
    The way I see it, parole should be earned after 80 to 90% of the sentence is completed.
    Too many lenient parole boards and weak judges are allowing criminals to walk back into society without any good reason.
    I applaud Captain Vancouver and anyone else who can provide more information on those who participated in the riots. Public shaming is working. The majority of the people who took part in the riots were not from Vancouver. They came in from Surrey, Langley, Abbotsford, Burnaby, New Westminister, Richmond and many other suburbs.
    The demographics show the rioters were predominantly male and the majority of them were white. Yes there were people of all races involved…so there shouldn’t be any reason to pick out just one race. A good number of the people involved were drinking or had been drinking or using other impairing substances. That is not to say that they are any more excused for their behaviour because they were high or drunk. No matter what, there is no excuse or valid reason to tear apart private or public property whether drunk, high or sober.
    The riot was NOT related to the Canucks losing. There were people who stated they would riot whether the Canucks won or lost. This is NOT about the hockey game.
    It was about opportunistic criminals taking advantage of a very large turnout of people to act in a criminal fashion. Most of those taking part in the riot were bent on destruction and figured that with all the people rioting, their chances of being caught would be very low.
    Social media has changed that. The riot of 1994 was a very different time and place.
    Now, the evidence is on websites and in the hands of the police.
    We can make this work and get criminals identified.
    There doesn’t seem to be much popularity with public shaming in a lot of circles so keep the information on the rioters to their names, Facebook profile links and their city of residence. Keep the racial comments to zero, keep the misogynist comments to zero and don’t threaten violence, don’t call families, don’t print addresses or phone numbers. I have no problem with rioters being outted or shamed but some of the comments are drawing a lot of heat and are defeating the purpose of the blog.

  8. Well said. Everyone needs to be prepared to welcome these people back into society with open arms. While right now we are in the process of shaming them, after they have apologized and made their reparations, we must all be ready to forgive. And if they don’t want to pay society back… screw em.

    The majority of these rioters seem like their participation was a one-off and they most definitely can come back from this and be good, productive members in our society.

    • “The majority of these rioters seem like their participation was a one-off”
      I don’t buy that line of thinking.
      That maybe true for Nathan Kotylak (police car arson attempt) and Camille Cacnio (Black & Lee looter) but not enough rioters have been arrested/charged to be able to determine whether they had previous criminal records.
      What these rioters will come to understand is that a criminal record will cripple them.
      Many employers do background checks. Some schools do background checks. When you cross the border, you could be checked for a criminal record. Many of these rioters have screwed their lives up.

      • Sorry I didn’t say that properly. I meant the majority of rioters featured on this site. Of course of all the rioters arrested so far we only know a handful.

  9. Too many people want to be judge and jury, including the person running this site. While information is going to propagate regardless about these people through photographs and attached notes with names, employers, social sites, etc. The shaming should be organized and structured by the justice system. I find this site, and others, gets me incredibly mad at those responsible, much more than perhaps I have a right to be. They hurt the reputation of my city, they harmed my neighbours businesses, but at the end of the day most are treating these people like murderers while the person running this side literally side-steps direct responsibility for a public lynching site. As i’ve written elsewhere, if this site was solely to link names to faces in photographs, the design layout would be such to limit most beyond those criteria. It’s incredible the misogynist and equally repugnant words some people have written VS the people in the mob just standing around applauding the situation. Seems this is simply another venue for a virtual riot, and that is despicable. Discourse is good, but allowing people throw stones wrapped in words at targets of your choice, to me, is not. Find out who they are, let us know who they are, report them and leave it at that. Safer I would think to post teh pictures without context, as it is not up to us to convict them based on what our individual assumptions may be. The context is up to the justice system to determine, and if a majority of people had their way, these people would be lynched without mercy.. Violators still have to deal with people who recognized them and own up to employers, co-workers, and likely the justice system. Don’t become what you despise. I’m no better, but definitely re-evaluating my emotions against the reality by putting myself in some other shoes. Kids like Nathan make mistakes, are easily influenced and shouldn’t be made to suffer permanent life scars, regardless of assumed context for remorse, there are thousands of others who have not come forward to own up. This site should work to expose them, not judge and lynch them.

  10. Well said, Kallen. I commend your candour, compassion and common-sense. And I have faith that justice, harmony and reason will prevail. There are many lessons to be learned (and not just by the accused protagonists). I have suggested some here, albeit implicitly.

    http://cinova.wordpress.com/2011/06/22/lessons-from-atticus-post-vancouver-riots/

  11. Well said – I hope that if redemption stories do come up, you post them here. It’ll always be a dark reminder of 6/15, but at least we are showing that we do forgive and we allow the accused members of society to pick themselves off and earn their respect again.

    • If this sounds racists-not meant to be. I had a feeling the idea from this probably came from the Asian community given that China and other countries use public shame as a legal punishment.
      If you know this,how can you justify the use of the punishment outside the legal system? Once you pull vigilante crap like this, it effects the entire legal system- haven’t you ever watched Dirty Harry?

      Editorial insert: Coming from the poster who’s own blog seeks to post personal information about TSA Officers online to publicly shame them. http://shameonyoutsa.wordpress.com/2011/06/28/rand-paul-vs-tsa-scum-paul-destroys-the-opposition/

  12. The objective of public shaming is to identify those who rioted. You don’t actually believe that those responsible would tell their employers directly do you?
    There have been at least a few of the morons involved in the riot who thought their
    updated Facebook statuses would be lost in a digital blackhole. When they publicly declared theire support for assaulting police, burning police cars, looting and destroying, their Facebook pages were screen-captured and released onto the net.
    Technically, those idiots outted themselves.
    Those who were captured digitally in photos and videos obviously didn’t think they were subject to having their criminal actions scrutinized by the world. In that, people were able to identify family, friends, neighbours, co-workers, acquaintances and team mates.
    The bright light of social media is shining on the cockroaches trying to seek the dark anonymity of the riot crowds. Criminals who boarded the Skytrain with hopes of chaos as they left their suburban homes are being identified. These are not Canuck fans.
    These are people bent on rioting regardless of the hockey game result.
    I’m all for rebuliding and moving forward after the riots. Yes, a collective group hug
    is part of the healing. As is the public shaming.
    Without tips flowing into the police, criminals will be able to continue on with their lives unpunished for participating the most destructive rioting in Vancouver’s history.
    I have no doubt that some people were caught up in the moment, however…anyone
    with some functioning moral compass knows the difference between right and wrong.
    It’s time for the people responsible to be held accountable.

  13. I almost always give people a second chance, but if that is betrayed, then I tend to write them off to learn their lessons far from my life. We put trust in each other, perhaps this is a situation where all need to step up, learn from what happened and be that change we want. If you want to be trusted, be straight forward, don’t hide behind an anonymous name, believe in what you say and be open to accept that, like a majority of those at the riot, you are not infallible, you make mistakes. Many of those got caught up in the moment and more than likely, caught or not, are regretting their involvement. Those who don’t feel sick about their involvement will continue on their spiral downwards, those who do, will be stronger and will join the rest of us supporting a fair and respectful society. We should know who they are, but allow for restitution and offer forgiveness before flogging.

    I sincerely wish however, that the public at large would come out in force to protect what is being dismantled, the structure of our Canadian society and what had once made it great and one of the best counter-points to American political culture. The kids may be misguided, but the adults are too accommodating of the powers that be. As one article pointed out, kids are not getting parented by family, they are getting parented by the market forces, manipulating them for increased profit on their demographic. The rioters may have felt anger, albeit not at the forefront of their consciousness, at the mega-powered multi-national corporations controlling our destiny and the lack of individual power to believe in our sovereign rights as earned by he blood of those who fought to build the once great ideology. Both immigrants and natives.

    I don’t think I’m way off on a tangent here. I can simply relate to wanting to do the same at times, however I hold my actions in check out of respect for those in my community and the knowledge such action will not affect change. The majority of the population has to support change, and that will never happen through force/smashing businesses&each other.

    • Thanks for your thoughts. What I’ve seen during this period of time is the danger of the extremes in both sides. Earlier today I was listening to Bill Good’s show as he had the BC Civil Liberties people on as guests and he was actually getting mad as their position bordered on being overly concerned about the rights of the criminal acts being done in relation to ICBC offering the VPD access to their facial recognition system. Equally the extreme on the issue of shaming online has gone over the line, I believe in the area of harassing family members of the accused and breaking laws that prohibit uttering threats and inciting violence. It is repeated over and over like a worn out cliche that the genie is out of the bottle regarding the use of social media to pressure others into falling into place. It’s cliche because we as the public have been enjoyin and consuming the display of online consequence ever since we watched the greatest hits of celebrity gossip on YouTube, or Mel Gibsons rant and rage and the latest Amthony Weiner debacle. In this case for the first time we’ve rightly or wrongly turned it onto ourselves to present the consequences of participating in a riot for all to see. Thanks for you comment. The way this will play out is more than the black and white issue that everyone in the media is currently showing it to be.

      • Do you at least see the doube standard where the West actually encourages riots in the Middle East but when it happens here we are more than willing to go internet vigilante on their asses?

        Editorial insert: Coming from the poster who’s own blog seeks to post personal information about TSA Officers online to publicly shame them. http://shameonyoutsa.wordpress.com/2011/06/28/rand-paul-vs-tsa-scum-paul-destroys-the-opposition/

      • I think the difference here is that I think the Vancouver Riots are an example of rioting for the fun of it. What happened in the Middle East are uprisings. The outing that followed Vancouver’s riots was one of outrage, while the secret police in Syria, Egypt, Libya, Iran etc use social media to go “state vigilante” on those speaking out against the current regimes in power.

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