- after the va tech shootings, many questions were asked about whether or not mental health officials should have done something more, whether they could have prevented cho's incomprehensible rampage. today, a story about a guy from moscow, idaho who killed himself and three other people. a quote from the article reads: "Hamilton had a history of violence, and a judge ordered him evaluated after he tried to kill himself in February by overdosing on anti-anxiety medication. Hamilton told a hospital worker that if he really wanted to commit suicide, he would do it through a mass shooting or bombing, Assistant Police Chief David Duke said. Hamilton was judged not to need involuntary commitment and was released, Duke said." when the tragedy at virginia tech happened, i was irate at the second-guessing, the back and forth over who should have/could have prevented the massacre. sure, this guy didn't kill 32 people, but to me, if prevention is possible, THIS is a preventable case. someone with a history of violence who has just attempted suicide and tells you that next time he'll kill a bunch of people probably needs to stay in the hospital a while, voluntarily or not. but here's the thing: how do you tell the difference between someone who says this type of thing to get attention and someone who really means it? the world is full of tragedy, and unfortunately i'm not at all convinced most of it is preventable... :(
- well, at least there's one crip with a conscience. a man in boston, massachusetts met a self-professed gang member while he was in jail for violating a restraining order his wife had against him. the man was going through a divorce and once he was out of jail, approached the gang member and asked him to kill his wife, mother-in-law and 7-year-old daughter. he asked that the daughter be shot in the chest so there could be an open casket funeral. he offered $2000 for the job. what a bastard. thankfully, the crip felt like he could not commit this crime, especially killing an innocent 7-year-old child, and so he told his mama. :) his mama called the FBI and the plot was thwarted. what the hell is wrong with people.
- speaking of what's wrong with people, lets talk about heroes for a second. last week i saw a story that made me cry on good morning america--a 91-year-old man was car jacked and beaten in the head repeatedly while at least 5 people just stood by and watched. i am still teary eyed when i think of this story. i understand that people are afraid the perpetrator could turn on them, but to stand by and do NOTHING? not yell, not call 911, nothing!? it's depressing to think of how apathetic we as a people have become. yet, in spite of this, there are stories like the one i was reminded of last night on deal or no deal, of wesley autrey, who saw a man fall into the subway tracks and jumped down on top of him and saved his life! where are the other people like wesley? i only pray that if i am ever faced with a similar situation that i can be like wesley autrey, not like those cowards who stood by as an elderly man was pummeled in the face. god, it makes me want to find those people and punch THEM in the face!
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Wednesday, January 31, 2007
- a woman who went to police because she was raped was thrown in jail. she had an outstanding warrant for failing to pay restitution for a theft in 2003. so they tossed her in jail, then wouldn't give her her second morning after pill so that she could be sure not to become pregnant by her rapist. now if that isn't the most horrifying way to be met with reporting a rape, i don't know what is. (besides, i guess, your rapist being the police officer assigned to you, which probably only could happen on tv.) tampa police say they've implemented a new policy stating that you can't throw someone reporting being a victim to a crime in jail immediately. good call, morons. i mean, jesus, at least find her rapist and THEN throw her in jail!
- fidel castro is up and chatting with venezuelan leader hugo chavez in a new video. oh well, miami, guess you're going to have to put that party off a little longer!
- have you ever seen this website? postsecret.blogspot.com? it is fascinating. each sunday they post a new batch of secrets that people mail in--anonymously--on postcards. there was an article on cnn today about the man who started it. pretty interesting stuff, check it out!
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
- a couple of notable deaths in recent news. first of all, barbaro. and guess what. i can't stand to read or watch any news about this story. i have no idea why but i can't tolerate a story about someone's beloved animal dying. so, farewell dear barbaro. oh, how they loved you.
- secondly, and this story i can tolerate, the most recent world's oldest person died yesterday. i swear i think she's the third oldest person to die in a month. her name was emma faust tilman. she was born in 1892. reading this article, i was struck by something she said in an interview in the late nineties about being the only black student to graduate from her Connecticut high school in 1909: "In Glastonbury, I didn't know if I was white or black," she said in 1994. "People were just fine, even way back then, to me. They treated me just like everybody else." i just can't understand why things aren't still that way. why they can't be that way. too sad.
- two fraternity brothers in florida have been sentenced to two years in prison for the hazing of a pledge that resulted in the pledge needing surgery on his butt and broken eardrum. what the hell is wrong with people? i have never understood the concept of hazing, but the sad truth is that these two guys are not solitary perpetrators. this happens at EVERY fraternity initiation. but in almost every case, the pledges keep their mouths shut so they can be part of the club. this has always seemed to me to be one of the most obnoxious, ridiculous rites of passage i've ever heard of. i have never known a fraternity or sorority member who would EVER discuss their initiation. it is supposed to be top secret. because it is so vile that they know they'd be disgraced over it. i feel bad for these two guys, but at the same time, someone has to be punished for it. one has a fiancee who is pregnant, and he asked to be let go so that he can be a father for his child since he grew up without one. that breaks my heart, but i would also like to see this hazing b.s. stop. so i have no idea what the solution is. do i think it's right for people to be made scapegoats? absolutely not. do i think it will ever stop if no one is ever punished? absolutely not. do i think it will continue in spite of these two guys going to prison and having their lives completely screwed up over something that is common practice in the world of fraternities? absolutely.
- in less depressing news, an 84-year-old world war II vet won a $254million lottery! how about that. lucky guy. why can't i win the lottery?!?! oh yeah, because i don't buy tickets!
- some school in new jersey has implemented a new policy to test kids for alcohol use on monday mornings. if that's not invading your privacy i don't know what is! first of all, it's one thing if you suspect the kid is drunk at school. it is a whole different story if you are testing the kid for what they did while they were not on school property. underage alcohol use has been in the news a lot in richmond lately after a 16-year-old drunk driver killed a 29-year-old man on new year's eve. the solution offered by most in the area is that we must be stricter on kids about alcohol use, pound into their heads that it is ILLEGAL until you turn 21. what a crock of shit. pardon my french. because speaking of the french, they don't worry so much about drinking age. i think there is one (like 16 maybe?). and i haven't actually researched this to make sure i'm spouting accurate information, but you just don't hear about underage drinking problems as much in europe. because the appeal of alcohol for underage drinkers here is that it is ILLEGAL! duh. kids want to do it because they can't. if it's alright for you to have a glass of wine or two at dinner, you recognize alcohol as a) something that is consumed in moderation and b) something that's common, that you don't have to sneak around and do stupid stuff to consume. some virginians were up in arms to learn that virginia law says that parents can give their kids alcohol. well, seriously, people, don't you realize that this is how parents can teach their kids to be RESPONSIBLE about alcohol consumption? i had the good sense to go to my dad when i decided i was ready to drink and say, "hey, i want to know what this is like but i don't want to do it somewhere stupid." but not everyone is comfortable enough with their parents to do that. how about let's trust our kids and teach them responsibility instead of fear? granted, i am not a parent, so what do i know? but i was a kid once. and a pretty responsible one if i do say so myself...
Friday, January 26, 2007
- 65-year-old nell hamm of california saved her husband's life when a mountain lion attacked him while they were hiking. she found a log nearby and beat the crap out of it until it finally got off her husband. she then screamed and waved the log at the cat as it stared at her, until it finally walked away. the husband has some injuries, but he's going to be alright thanks to his wife. they celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary next month. can you imagine? beating a mountain lion off your husband? or anyone else for that matter?! what a brave, brave lady. they're supposed to go to new zealand next month for their anniversary. maybe someone will pick up the tab...
- the new york city mayor's office wants to have an official NYC condom. they think, and i quote, "more people will use them if they have jazzy packaging." hmm. i think handing out free condoms is a great strategy for cutting down on the spread of STDs, but i am not so sure "jazzy packaging" is going to make more people use them. but, whatever. :)
- life lesson #23,348: it is not a good idea to go sky diving with your lover and his girlfriend. a belgian woman plummeted to her death last november when her parachute failed. police have arrested a woman who was on the skydive with her, and they say the woman they've arrested tampered with the dead lady's parachute because she found out she was having an affair with her boyfriend. who was also on the skydive. they're pretty sure this woman they've arrested is guilty since when they asked her to come in to make a second statement, she tried to kill herself instead. sad. and certainly no one deserves to die such a horrible death because they're having an affair, but jeez. not so bright to jump out of a plane with someone who HATES YOU. duh.
- poor mozart. he has had too much viagra or something. they're going to chop this little lizard's wanker off because he has had an erection for over a week. have no fear, though. this type of lizard actually has TWO weewees, so he'll still have one left when it's all over, and his keepers say it won't affect his little lizard sex life at all. phew!
- police were able to catch a 16-year-old robbery suspect in louisiana because his pants were so baggy they fell down as he tried to run away. man, people are dumb.
- a family got kicked off their flight home when their three-year-old daughter wouldn't stop crying. air tran later apologized and refunded their tickets, but they say they won't fly airtran again anytime soon. not sure how i feel about that... i would hate to be on a flight where a kid was screaming for two hours, but chances are she was going to calm down eventually. kids do that stuff, you can't just ban kids because they're kids. can you?
Thursday, January 25, 2007
- hooray for code words! a mother and her children, who had been missing for several days, were found when her family and a pizza guy helped the police discover them. the family said the missing woman called them to tell them she was fine, but when she didn't respond with the proper code word they had established to indicate she was safe, they knew she was being held against her will. i think a lot of other things came together for the police to find them, but how smart that they had established this code word and the whole family knew it. i know that's a technique they teach little kids as far as strangers go, but never thought to use it in my own life. granted, this woman had been in an abusive relationship for a long time and probably really needed this code word, but it does make me wonder if there's any use for such a thing for me...
- i've become a bit obsessed lately about saving money and retirement. yes, yes, i realize i have quite a while until i get to retire, but i'm still obsessed with it. this story about a single mom who is on her way to becoming a millionaire is very inspiring, with some smart money ideas like encouraging your kids to save by matching whatever they save each month. my dad has encouraged me to save at least 10% of what i earn since i started working at 17, and while i didn't listen very well then, i did listen, and now understand how important saving really is. so i'm always welcoming tips on how to do it even better!
- man, people are funny. recently researchers released news that two minutes in the microwave can kill most, if not all, of the bacteria in a kitchen sponge. so apparently some people decided they'd try this, with a dry sponge. the sponge must be wet for this to work. i love this guy's comment: "Just wanted you to know that your article on microwaving sponges and scrubbers aroused my interest. However, when I put my sponge/scrubber into the microwave, it caught fire, smoked up the house, ruined my microwave, and pissed me off." oops!
- american idol is back in full force! i have been watching and each year i seem to cringe more and more at the bad contestants. i just feel awful for those people. i am looking forward to getting down to the good folks! so far i love sundance head and melinda the backup singer, who ironically are from the same audition city. i'm sure there will be others i like but right now those are the ones that stand out. the only thing about sundance is he needs to cover up that bear rug that's on his chest. not so fond of the hairiness.
- this is the craziest thing i've ever seen. a frilled shark. these suckers apparently live like 2000 feet under water so they're seen very rarely, but one came to the surface because it was sick or something and they caught it in japan. man, there are some weird looking things living on this planet!! check out this article for more pictures and even some video!
- this may be the weirdest story i've ever read. this guy is 29. apparently, he convinced a 61-year-0ld man and a 43-year-old man that he was 12 and they took him in and had sexual relationships with him. then they enrolled him in school, as a 12-year-old 7th grader. so by day he was a 7th grader and by night he was sex partner to two pedophiles. he went to school for 50 days until they kicked him out for poor attendance. the 43-year-old man, when he was arrested for intent of child molestation or something, said he was "very upset to learn his live in partner was an adult." i don't even know what to say about this story. ironically, all this occurred in a town called surprise, arizona. how about that.
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
alright, i've been absent for a while with the holidays and all, but i'm ready to get back in the groove.
- last night was the state of the union address. at this point, i have stopped watching our president speak. i can't handle it. nevermind what he says. it's the way he says it. last night i had dinner with a friend and got home a few minutes into the SOTU address. i had decided i wasn't watching it days ago, but then, as always, i felt like i was shirking my civic duty, so i thought i'd watch at least a few minutes of it. no sooner than i turned it on the man said NUCULAR. dammit, mr. president, the word is NU-CLE-AR. the man has been in office for 6 freaking years and hasn't learned how to say nuclear? that is just unacceptable.
- now, as far as what he actually said--because i do care, i just can't stand to actually hear it coming out. gotta read it in the news the next day. and so, my everyday girl opinions:1. he said he's going to submit a budget to eliminate our nation's deficit in 5 years. to that, i say HA! i'll believe it when i see it. 2. cut dependence on oil by 20% in 10 years. great idea. let's do it. no need to say it's so we can avoid terrorism, though. there are plenty of other reasons we need to cut our oil usage. in today's culture, though, everything's about scaring people into action. annoying. 3. more troops to iraq. arg. very sick of this war. 4. health insurance. should not be about tax breaks. should be about getting health care coverage for all the people in our country who don't have it. plain and simple. france does it, and i don't care if you don't like france, it works. lots of other countries do, too. there is no reason we can't. 4. immigration reform. i'm not educated enough on this subject to have a very strong opinion, but i will say that giant ass wall of america they're building is the most wasteful use of money EVER. my friend kim would kick me for not having my act together on this immigration debate (we just need to get together 'cause she's smart about that stuff), but i will say that it brought the most amusing response from last night. "I am disappointed but not surprised that the president has once again chosen to trot out this same old pig, albeit one with a slightly new shade of lipstick" (from Republican Rep. Tom Tancredo). that is just funny.