Black People : Former MSU Basketball Star Caught in Sexual Assault Net

Queenie

going above and beyond
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Feb 9, 2001
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Former Michigan State basketball star Mateen Cleaves is facing multiple charges after allegedly holding a woman against her will in a motel and sexually assaulting her.

Cleaves, 39, was charged Tuesday with unlawful imprisonment, assault with intent to commit criminal sexual penetration, second-degree criminal sexual conduct and two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. The charges carry a penalty of up to 15 years in prison.

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Over the years and while in college, Cleaves has had his share of encounters with the law, mostly DUI's, but this recent charge is a game changer. Knowing what I know about Cleaves, he's very civic minded, has done a lot for the Flint community working with the Boys and Girls Club. This charge will be a blow to that community and to the children he has helped over the years.

I'm not judging Cleave's guilt or innocence here, but observing how, once again, Black people--men in particular--are demonized and victimized in American society. I don't care whether you're an average Joe or your name is a household word--you're SOL and live a high risk life if you're Black.

Over the past couple of years, the Obama administration has drawn more national attention to issues around sexual assault and relationship violence, particularly on college campuses. The statistic, one in five women are likely to experience an assault while attending college is the driving force behind this--supposedly. A ton of money is boosting efforts including setting up offices and hiring a ton of attorneys to receive reports and investigate charges and they are struggling already trying to meet the demand.

Heads up and I'm not telling you anything that you don't already know! As far as rape goes, this is nothing new to Black men and Black families. Black men are hyper-sexualized by the media and stereotyped as having uncontrollable sexual urges. But charges being filed today are occurring at an alarming rate because there are statutes of limitations in most states on less severe cases of sexual assault/relationship violence--ranging from persistent comments of a sexual nature to penetration--and more Black men are going to get caught in the judicial system's net more frequently if they are not paying attention.

I do NOT condone rape or sexual violence in any form but it seems like the judicial system is making it easier for women (and some men) to hurl charges at men and these charges, if convicted, come with some head spinning penalties.

I say all this to say, Black men be careful, stay alert, watch how you speak to women and control your behavior when with them. Smartphones can be your best "friend" or your worst "enemy." They can be used to record things you say and video things you do. Don't put yourselves in compromising situations and run your mouths loosely to women and let your hands touch places on their bodies without their consent--and trust and believe she can say yes one minute and no the next and you would still be in the wrong if you don't stop when she asks you to--because you're thinking with your little head and not the big one. Know also that alcohol and sex are not a good mix. In social settings, stay sober and DO NOT try to or have sex with a woman under the influence of alcohol. The days of white women--any woman hollering rape against you and being taken seriously by the courts and putting you on major defense with the chance that you will be found guilty are the Black community's reality.
 

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