Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Merciful end to a tragic case rooted in lack of empathy

Judge Glenn Berman was about as merciful as he could have been Monday in sentencing Dharun Ravi, the 20-year-old former Rutgers student convicted of spying on his roommate, Tyler Clementi, with a webcam a few days before Clementi committed suicide in September 2010.
The judge sentenced Ravi to 30 days in jail, as part of three years of probation. Ravi also got 300 hours of community service and was ordered to pay a $10,000 fine. Given what he did, how he has handled himself, and the maximum sentence he was facing — 10 years in prison — Ravi should consider himself lucky. Very, very lucky.

Dharun Ravi received a sentence of 30 days in jail and three years probation for spying on his gay roommate and posting images of him kissing a man. The roommate committed suicide days later. MEL EVANS

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It was an emotional morning in court. Everyone who spoke — the judge, the lawyers, the families of Clementi and Ravi — wrestled with the terrible weight of Clementi's death, and the extent to which it was caused by Ravi's callous and cruel decision to spy on Clementi while he had a date with a man (known as M.B. through the trial) in the room Clementi and Ravi shared at Rutgers.

I felt my heart pulled by both families. Clementi's father told the judge, "It's hard for me to imagine the humiliation he felt from having someone film his most intimate moments." He mentioned how often Clementi checked the Twitter page where Ravi braggingly posted his spying plans as evidence of how disturbed his son was by his roommate's salacious bid for attention. Clementi's brother James said, "Tyler's final days and hours were filled with fear, shame and a despair so great it ripped him away from me forever."

Ravi's parents, on the other hand, denied any link between their son's actions and Clementi's death. Ravi's father, Ravi Pazhani, said his son harbored no prejudice toward gay people — the underlying rationale for the bias conviction that was the reason Ravi faced multiple years in prison. That seemed like an understandable defensive note to strike; less so was Pazhani's angry tone and comments lashing out at "the vengeful, malicious, selective prosecution."

But I began to see why Pazhani felt he too had a right to be angry when he ended by saying, "I have never felt so powerless in my life." And Ravi's mother, Sabitha, weepingly recounted the effect of the mass condemnation of her son. "It all started with the media ripping him apart," she said. "He was devastated and broken into pieces ... as a mother I feel that Dharun has really suffered enough from the past two years."

Ravi cried while she spoke, but he chose not to explain himself Monday. In two interviews after his conviction, he said he was sorry, but his insistence that he acted without any anti-gay feelings at all just wasn't plausible. Ravi said he turned on his camera only because the man Clementi invited to the room, M.B., looked "strange." I don't buy it. More believable, but not especially sympathetic, was Ravi's response to the question "What were you thinking?" He answered, "I wasn't," adding, "I got caught up in what I thought was funny, and my own ego."

I've been opposed to Ravi serving prison time — not because I condone what he did, but because a harsh sentence seemed out of proportion given the stupid and jerky aspect of the invasion of privacy he committed. But I wish he'd given a self-aware and mature accounting of himself. By acknowledging, at least, that he can understand why it's wrong and hurtful to spy and send a titillated tweet like "I saw him making out with a dude. Yay."

I wanted some showing from Ravi, in other words, that he has grown up. Instead, he stayed silent, and his letter to the court, asking for leniency, was "unimpressive," as Berman put it.
The judge faulted Ravi's lack of remorse and humility and said, "You can't expunge the misconduct and the pain you have caused." But Berman rightly found that Ravi is probably not at risk to commit another similar offense. He took into account Ravi's age — 18 at the time of the spying — and his previously clean record. He said that Ravi didn't contemplate the harm his misconduct would cause.
And he correctly pointed out that in the New Jersey cases in which a conviction for a bias crime has led to a long prison sentence, the bias was related to a crime of violence.

The saddest aspect of this case remains the missed chance Ravi and Clementi had to connect in the few weeks they knew each other. Ravi had learned via online that Clementi was gay before school begun. Jane Clementi recounted that when she and her husband arrived with their son on the first day of school, the family walked into his new room to find Ravi already ensconced at his computer. "No greeting, no smile, no recognition, no nothing," she said. Ravi's parents had to prompt him to acknowledge them.

To Clementi's mother, in retrospect, the encounter was proof that Ravi had written off her son. It's that act of turning away, with its lack of empathy and compassion, that will continue to haunt us. As it should.

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Monday, May 21, 2012

US Roommates Reduces Travel Costs

Are you preparating to go to North America, US for business ? Are you having hard time going through the list of hotels, luxurious and economical both? Well you need not worry since now you can stay in a well - furnished apartments for your business or profession. Of course these are certainly very good options available to you for your lodging in US on temporary basis. These furnished apartments will offer you spacious place at an inexpensive price rate that will meet your budget and requirements.

Moreover, these apartments in US are specifically available to meet the business supplies for a business trip. You will have a great experience while staying in one of these apartments in US and will enjoy your stay offered by them. Some important factors for choosing the stay in US can are as follows:

Comfortable and Spacious

When you plan to stay in US especially for business, you might avoid a hotel or inn which provides ordinary living facilities. Instead, you will try to find a place which provides comfortable stay within a reasonable budget. To organize and manage your business plans, you will definitely look for total peace of mind and business apartment which offers all types of amenities in US. But, these apartments go one step ahead in offering you such facilities that suits your budget. While you stay in this apartment you will get spacious rooms that will make you feel at home. If any US roommate also wishes to share this apartment with you, they can be conveniently accommodated in big and well-furnished business apartments. A reliable US roommate can make your business trip more economical.

Lots of Amenities

Sometimes the luxurious and budget hotels charge you extra for very few facilities offered by them. This is expensive and also not convenient as some facilities are always missing. US Business apartments helps in making your stay comfortable as they provide a comprehensive list of services and facilities which does not reduce the balance in your bank. Generally the amenities offered always include center of entertainment, health center, microwave oven, laundry and many other services. The apartments in US for business also provide a complete functional kitchen where you are able to cook a healthy meal for yourself which can be more nutritious naturally than to the expensive food available in the hotel restaurant.

Economical Apartments

So, if you enjoy your stay in spacious accommodation with quality service offered by the business apartments in US, you will truly appreciate its service value. It provides everything that you are looking for while you are in business trip. Extremely economical, you will never be surprised by the deal given by the US business apartments. From the money saved by not staying in an expensive hotel, you can buy gifts for your dear ones.

If you have to frequently travel to US then having a trustworthy US roommate is an ideal solution. Just make this business apartments your head quarter which offers comfortable long or short stays in America within your budget. This is more practical and economical too. It reduces your travel cost.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Indian Roommates easier to find with Sulekha’s online roommates search

Indian Roommates easier to find with Sulekha’s online roommates search

Finding Indian roommates is obviously the best option for Indians looking for accommodation in the US. An Indian roommate can help a lot in bringing down the monthly living expenses. Going for Indian roommates can reduce all the accommodation-related bills right away. However, the tricky part is finding the right Indian roommates, so one should know the right place for carrying out an Indian roommates search. This is because no one wants to get caught up with the wrong roommates, as there’s a significant amount of time to be spent with them. Although the searching process takes some effort, it is not an impossible task. One easy way of doing this roommates search is through Sulekha’s Indian Roommates site (at

As expected, one would expect to establish an idea of their desired roommate before getting started. A lot of figuring out needs to be done, such as whether you want to share the room with males or females, about number of rooms, room type, cost of rent, etc. Thankfully, carrying out such a roommate search is straightforward on, as the site offers options to filter out the search according to specific needs. You can narrow your selections by cost and various other parameters. You can also select the distance range for your search from a chosen location and check out the Indian roommates within that area.

Although the site can help in getting to your Indian roommates faster, it is your responsibility to make sure you share your home with a roommate you can completely trust. Also, one needs to appropriately complete the rental agreements and other formalities.

The advantage of going for Indian roommates is that, apart from bringing down the costs involved, one also gets emotional and cultural support from someone who comes from the same ethnic background. Also, it is easier for Indians to get along with Indian roommates than with those from other countries. And, the whole job of searching is now simpler, thanks to online Indian roommates search services, such as Try it today! is one of the most popular among those owned by Indian Mobile and internet firms, and offers a topnotch e-commerce platform in upwards of fifty cities in India and North America for industries serving an array of consumer requirements. A winner of India’s no.1 multi-utility website award from IAMAI, Sulekha innovatively integrates E-commerce services, Classifieds, and Local Search across prime markets.