San Francisco Chronicle, May 31, 1892. Even if I blogged 24/7/365 strictly about wife-beating, I’d never live long enough to exhaust the available supply of these anecdotes about masked men enforcing community standards with a rope and a whip. As mentioned before, such incidents are part of an ancient tradition called the “rough music.” This one’s interesting for its ferocity plus the stipulation that it was the local gentry who were taking care of business. But when, I wonder, was the last time someone was tarred and feathered by his neighbors in this great country of ours?
Note the cheery and approving tone of the reportage throughout. It’s understandable to me on one level, but it also reminds me of the way that people today groove and gloat over the notion of prison rape as a humorous informal supplement to our justice system.