Michelle Dunaj made one last trip before she enters hospice on Oct. 17. The Michigan native who is facing death as a result of leukemia flew to Hawaii. But the Transportation Security Administration put a damper on the trip.
Dunaj received a full pat-down. She alleges that TSA officials made her pull up her shirt and pull back bandages in front of other travelers.
“My issue is: It was in front of everyone, and everyone was looking at me like I was a criminal or like I was doing something wrong,” said Dunaj. “It shouldn’t have been in front of everyone. I asked them if they thought that was an appropriate location, and they told me that everything was fine.”
Danaj also claims that an agent punctured a bag of saline that she carries for medical reasons.
TSA Northwest Region spokeswoman Lorie Dankers responded to the incident: “We have determined that our screening procedures were followed.”
She added, “We work to make our screening procedures as minimally invasive as possible while providing the level of security that the American people want and deserve.”
A Texas man is upset after he received a letter of condolence from President Barack Obama following the passing of his son, a Marine. Tom Logan of Willis, Texas, received a form letter signed by the President. Logan expected more.
“You can’t send another letter,” Logan said. “You can’t make it right.”
The same letter has been sent to other families. The name, rank and service branch of the fallen soldier is changed.
University of Houston Professor and Historian Nancy Beck Young told Click2Houston.com that each President has approached the task differently.
“I would agree, this is a personal sacrifice and an impersonal condolence,” Young noted.
Young said that former President George W. Bush wrote handwritten letters at times.
“Where are the representatives of our government? Where is the honor and the respect that all of these soldiers deserve?” Logan asked.
The White House has not responded to the complaint.
Logan’s son, Cpl. Joseph D. Logan, was killed on Jan. 19 in a helicopter crash.
Forget the economy; President Barack Obama’s attention has shifted to saving Big Bird.
Following Mitt Romney’s statement that he would stop the subsidy to PBS, Obama and company have come to Big Bird’s aid. Since Romney’s remark, the “Sesame Street” icon has become a fixture in the President’s campaign.
On Tuesday, the Obama campaign released a new ad featuring the yellow avian.
“Big. Yellow. A menace to our economy. Mitt Romney knows it’s not Wall Street you have to worry about, it’s Sesame Street,” the ad says.
Democrats think Romney’s strategy is absurd, not the new ad.
“When asked how he would cut the deficit, Romney’s answer is to eliminate PBS and ‘Sesame Street’ — an absurd solution,” said the Obama campaign in a statement. “You would need to cut PBS more than 1,000 times to fill the hole in Romney’s budget promises!”
The Republican National Committee has responded with a picture of the Count.
It is unclear where Big Bird stands on the issue. Big Bird has supported Michelle Obama’s healthy eating initiative as well as Barbara Bush’s push for children’s reading.
But it is clear where Sesame Workshop stands. The PBS-affiliated non-profit behind “Sesame Street” said in a statement: “We have approved no campaign ads, and as is our general practice, have requested that the ad be taken down.”
In August, political science professors Kenneth Bickers and Michael Berry predicted that Mitt Romney would win the election. They have since produced an updated model that gives a new result: an even bigger win for Romney.
The team of professors has created a model that has correctly chosen the President every year since 1980.
Despite the fact that many national polls show Obama out in front, the Bickers and Berry model continues to show Romney winning by a landslide. Their original forecast had Romney winning with 320 electoral votes. The new forecast shows Romney taking the White House with 330 electoral votes.
“We continue to show that the economic conditions favor Romney even though many polls show the president in the lead,” Bickers said. “Other published models point to the same result, but they looked at the national popular vote, while we stress state-level economic data.”
The new model predicts that President Barack Obama will carry Michigan and Nevada and that Romney will win New Mexico, North Carolina, Virginia, Iowa, New Hampshire, Colorado, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Florida.
“As scholars and pundits well know, each election has unique elements that could lead one or more states to behave in ways in a particular election that the model is unable to correctly predict,” wrote Bickers and Berry.
New tests suggest that once a drone takes off, it may be a while before it has to land. The U.S. military has shown how drones can refuel while in the air. This ability has sparked discussions of so-called flying gas stations to be used over areas of combat in the future.
“The goal of this demonstration was to create the expectation that future [High Altitude Long Endurance] aircraft will be refueled in flight,” said Jim McCormick, program manager at the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.
Initially, DARPA had low expectations in regard to drones refueling midair. But it has been able to reach success rates of about 60 percent.
New technology is in the works for drones. The Stalker, a small battery-powered drone, could be recharged midair with lasers.
“This test is one of the final steps in bringing laser-powered flight to the field,” said Tom Nugent, president of LaserMotive. “By enabling in-flight recharging, this system will ultimately extend capabilities, improve endurance and enable new missions for electric aircraft.”
It is well-known that tanning beds have been linked to melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer. But now, a new study finds that indoor tanning can also lead to other types of skin cancers.
Each year, tanning beds are responsible for more than 170,000 cases of basal and squamous cell skin cancer, according to researchers. When the team analyzed more than 9,000 cases of non-melanoma skin cancer, they found that tanning beds were associated with a 67 percent higher risk of squamous cell carcinoma and a 29 percent higher risk of basal cell carcinoma.
“Not only do tanning beds cause melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, but our study shows they also contribute to the most common cancer, basal and squamous cell skin cancer,” said lead researcher Dr. Eleni Linos, assistant professor of dermatology at the University of California, San Francisco.
If a school board member in New Hampshire gets his way, Friday night football will get sacked. Paul Butler of New Dover, N.H., wants to see the fall pastime banned.
Butler, a retired surgeon, is a new member of the school board. He hopes his position can have an impact.
“I’ll do my best to try to convince the other members of the school board that it’s a dangerous game and that we should abandon it,” Butler told 7News in Boston. “Football, unlike hockey, unlike lacrosse — both of which are violent games — football is the one where the head gets repeatedly banged.”
Butler hopes his proposal will be voted on soon.
The idea is catching on with some parents, like Mike Wasserman.
“They love the game and it’s a hard thing to say, ‘you can’t play anymore,’ after you’ve been playing your whole life, but it makes me nervous,” he said.
Football has also come under attack in Massachusetts with the publishing of neurosurgeon Robert Cantu’s book Concussions and Our Kids.
Every year, Glenn and Melissa Cruson of Colleyville, Texas, put on an elaborate Halloween display. But this year’s spectacle has some people upset.
The Crusons’ yard features a spider web — a web in which President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden are caught. The Biden figurine is dressed as a clown and Obama has a big, red nose. Some neighbors have thought that Obama appears to be hanging.
“It has nothing to do with the office, the person that’s in the office of the president; nothing to do with the color, anything like that,” said Melissa Cruson. “It’s just the whole arena is just out of control. It’s the web. It had nothing to do with the tree at all.”
The display is full of Romney-Ryan signs and numbers dealing with the economy.
Despite criticism, the Crusons have no intention of taking down their display.
“I just think it’s important to show it’s our right, to free speech,” she said. “I don’t want that squashed and I’m afraid it’s being squashed by both sides.”
A Philadelphia high school student was told to leave class when she arrived wearing a Romney T-shirt. The geometry teacher at Charles Carroll High School told 16-year-old Samantha Pawlucy that wearing a Romney shirt is like “wearing a KKK shirt.”
“She told me to take off my shirt and said that she has another one if I need one. And then the teacher asked me, ‘Are your parents Republican?’” recounted Pawlucy to NBC10 in Philadelphia. “I said, ‘I don’t know.’ She said that’s like her wearing a KKK shirt.”
The teacher is still working for the school district, and has simply been transferred to another classroom. The teacher claims to have been joking.
“If it was a joke between two adults, I can take a joke like that but she didn’t know how to take it, she doesn’t understand, she actually thinks she did something wrong,” said Pawlucy’s father.
Students across the Nation have resisted new school lunch policies largely influenced by first lady Michelle Obama. A school system in Florida thinks they may have a solution to the problem: surveillance cameras.
New Federal law requires that students eat healthy produce at lunchtime. But students in Lake County Florida are refusing to eat the new and improved lunches that are offered. So school board officials are considering installing cameras in the trash cans to keep an eye on how many veggies are being thrown out.
“It’s a big issue, and it’s very hard to get our hands around it,” Todd Howard, the school board member who suggested the idea, told Local 6 in Orlando. “They have to take it, and then it ends up in the trash can, and that’s a waste of taxpayer money. It’s also not giving students the nutrition that they need.”
Parent Laurel Walsh thinks it’s the parents’ job to get kids to eat their veggies — not the government’s.
“I think it starts at home with the parents. If the kids just don’t like it because they’ve never been given it at home, they’re not going to try something new here,” she said.
School board members have said that if the cameras are installed, the faces of the students will not be seen. Only the food being thrown away will be recorded.
A new study shows that studies can’t be trusted. Researchers found that nearly 70 percent of research articles have been retracted because of fraud.
When researchers reviewed more than 2,000 articles published in scientific journals, they found that 67.4 percent had to be retracted. Fraudulent studies have increased nearly tenfold since the 1970s.
The majority of fraudulent articles came out of the United States. Germany, Japan, China, the U.K., India and South Korea also produced erroneous research.
The research on fraudulent articles, which appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, concludes that on average it takes about 32 months for an article to be found fraudulent and get retracted. By that time, many stories have already been treated as fact, and governmental policy may have been enacted because of the so-called research.
“Authors commonly write, ‘We regret we have to retract our paper because the work is not reproducible,’ which is not exactly a lie,” said Arturo Casadevall, M.D., of Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University. “The work indeed was not reproducible-because it was fraudulent. Researchers try to protect their labs and their reputations, and these retractions are written in such a way that you often don’t know what really happened.”
Philadelphia police are investigating one of their own after a video surfaced of an officer punching a woman in the face during a parade. The video went viral after being posted on YouTube.
The officer was allegedly hit with a liquid during the Puerto Rican Day Parade. He then turned to a woman behind him. She started walking away, but he followed and punched her, injuring her mouth and arm.
The woman was cuffed and taken away. The video, taken by an onlooker, reveals blood coming from the woman’s mouth.
The officer is still working for the department but has been restricted to administrative duties.
Lt. Ray Evers responded to the incident: “We were made aware of the video very, very early this morning (Monday). Internal Affairs opened up an investigation in reference to the incident and the actions of that officer. The incident is being fully investigated.
“The video speaks for itself,” he added. “There were people in the crowd throwing items at the officer, water and other things.”
A high school marching band in Pennsylvania gave a nod to Russian communism. The New Oxford High School Marching Band put on a halftime show that shocked the crowd at a football game on Sept. 14.
The band marched onto the field, adorned with red flags, olive military uniforms, hammers and sickles. An upset parent told Fox News about the show.
“There is no reason for Americans to celebrate the Russian revolution,” said the concerned parent. “I am sure the millions who died under Communism would not see the joy of celebrating the Russian revolution by a school 10 miles from Gettysburg. It was ‘Glee’ meets the Russian Revolution. I’m not kidding you. They had giant hammers and sickles and they were waving them around.”
Rebecca Harbaugh, the superintendent for the Conewago Valley School District, said that the show was not an endorsement of communism.
“It’s a representation of the time period in history called St. Petersburg 1917,” she said. “I am truly sorry that somebody took the performance in that manner. I am.”
Since the controversy, the band has changed the performance by removing the hammers and sickles and featuring fewer historical events prior to the Russian revolution.
However, the Russian backdrop and olive uniforms remain.
Many parents support the initial show, noting that the band should be artistic.
“Our school is very artistic,” said one advocate. “People need to listen to the music more.”
A Chinese company is planning to sue the President over actions it claims are unConstitutional.
According to Ralls Corp., a company that builds wind farms, President Barack Obama halted a project in Oregon. The company wants to be paid for the losses it incurred — losses it claims will be near $25 million.
Last week, Obama issued an order giving the company 90 days to sell four of its wind farm sites. Plus, he ordered that all of its equipment must be gone in two weeks.
The President believes that the green company, which has several locations near a U.S. Navy test site in Oregon, could be a national security threat.
But Ralls Corp. claims there are many other wind turbines in the area and that Obama’s order is a violation of the Constitution.
“The selective and arbitrary singling out of Ralls’ project drives our effort to seek redress in U.S. courts,” said Tim Xia, counsel for the company. “We are confident that the courts will vindicate Ralls’ rights under the law and the Constitution and we intend to pursue the remedies that the law makes available.”
Legal analysts say the courts will be reluctant to question the President’s decision.
Ralls is being advised by the assistant attorney general and solicitor general from George W. Bush’s Administration.
A man in Atlanta claims he received a parking ticket after an officer noticed the Mitt Romney sticker on his car. The driver admits to having parked illegally, but it was what he claims to have heard the officer say that made him furious.
“I overheard her say that, when she saw the sticker on the back of my car, the Mitt Romney sticker, ‘Well you have a Romney sticker. I’m definitely going to give you a ticket now,'” the motorist recalled. “It sounded like she was almost insulted by the fact that I had a Mitt Romney sticker on the back of my car.”
Georgia Republican Party Chairwoman Sue Everhart responded to the allegations: “I am just amazed that this happened in this city. And I know that this is not what Mayor [Kasim] Reed would like to see his employees do. It reflects on the whole city.”
Eric Gray, a spokesperson for the Georgia Democratic Party, said the incident needs to be investigated before any further action is taken.
“We shouldn’t be casting stones and trying to throw people under the bus,” Gray said. “This guy shouldn’t be targeted because of his bumper sticker. But we also shouldn’t target people’s jobs based upon conjecture or what we’re not certain about. Someone should investigate it. Let’s see what happens. Let’s let it play out.”
Both campaigns are telling voters not to expect much in the Presidential debates. If you listen to all the hype, you would think that each party believes the opposing candidate is more competent. If neither party thinks its candidate is capable, why should the American people believe he is?
Early in the month, the Barack Obama campaign told voters to expect Mitt Romney to win the debates.
Obama’s campaign spokeswoman Jennifer Psaki said: “While Mitt Romney has done 20 debates in the last year, he has not done one in four years, so there certainly is a challenge in that regard.”
Now, the Romney campaign has followed suit, telling voters not to expect much out of Romney. The GOP provided a memo to CNN on Thursday, saying that Obama is “widely regarded as one of the most talented political communicators in modern history.” The memo goes to state that Obama will attack Romney with his “ample rhetorical gifts and debating experience.”
Republicans seem to think that lowering expectations is a good tactic, so they have decided to imitate the Democrats.
The message from Democrats: Romney is an experienced debater. Expect him to win the debate but lose the election.
The message from Republicans: Obama is an experienced debater. Expect him to win the debate but lose the election.
If Ron Paul had a spot on the stage, I doubt his backers would be praising the opposition.
According to Robert Cantu, a neurosurgeon at Emerson Hospital in Massachusetts and author of the new book Concussion and Our Kids, no child younger than 14 should engage in rough activities. Doing so could result in a concussion and damage to the brain.
Cantu thinks it might be a good idea for kids to wait until graduating high school before participating in full-contact sports, such as football or hockey.
“If kids don’t have axillary (underarm) or pubic hair, they aren’t ready to play,” Cantu said. “And I have absolutely no problem with parents who want to hold a child out for longer, say 16 or 18.”
Cantu says it has to do with the size of the head in comparison to the strength of the neck.
“Our youngsters have big heads on very weak necks and that combination sets up the brain for greater injury,” he notes.
Cantu is aware of the common rebuttal: Kids who want to be competitive in sports have to start early. But the neurosurgeon says that such arguments are simply not true.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has its sights set on young people, hoping the next generation will quit eating meat. PETA wants to advertise on school lunchroom trays, starting in Cleveland.
The ad is a cartoon sketch of a chicken with the words “I am not a nugget” and “Go vegan.”
Ashley Palmer, a spokesperson for PETA, hopes that the message will cause students to be more compassionate toward animals.
“Vegan food is really healthy and considering the amount of artery-clogging cholesterol that’s in meat and dairy and egg products, vegan choices are a great option for schools,” Palmer said.
Cleveland Metropolitan School District Communications Officer Rosann Canfora said they will consider whether the advertising “is a legitimate revenue source worthy of further investigation.”
The idea has been met with mixed reviews from parents.
Parent Shari Litton told FOX 8 Cleveland that she thinks the idea is “great” and “wonderful.”
But other parents disagree.
“There’s a lot of meat eaters out there,” parent Deshon Conel said.
Five years ago, a city in Kansas decided to ban the open carrying of guns. On Monday, that decision was reversed.
Overland Park’s City Council decided to allow citizens to walk the streets with guns in full view. The ban was overturned with an 11-1 vote.
Citizens can open carry with a few caveats: The weapon has to be holstered, the safety has to be on and citizens cannot carry guns into city-owned buildings.
Some citizens support the ban being overturned, while others think the decision is not wise.
“As a matter of respect to the right of a person to own a gun and carrying, clearly, I do support that,” said Michelle Dunham of Overland Park. “But as a person would be walking next to people carrying guns out, yeah, that’s more concerning to me.”
Business owner Sheila Weiford thinks the new open carry law is outdated.
“We don’t need someone walking around toting a gun. That’s not what we’re all about. It’s not the Dodge City days,” she said.
In July 2011, a Texas mom spent the night in jail after a neighbor called and told police that children were playing outside unsupervised. Tammy Cooper was arrested on child endangerment charges. Now, she’s suing her neighbor Shelley Fuller, the arresting officer and the La Porte Police Department.
Cooper’s children, age 6 and 9, were playing outside when a neighbor called 911 and claimed the children had been abandoned. When police arrived, Cooper told them she had been sitting outside the entire time. Nonetheless, she spent 18 hours in jail.
Cooper, who says she routinely allows her children to play outside while she keeps on an eye on them from inside the house, was handcuffed in front of her children.
“The incident also led to an investigation by Child Protective Services, requiring Cooper to take her children to the CPS office in Houston,” reads the complaint. “Her children were separated from her and interrogated by child abuse investigators. CPS found no cause for concern regarding the well being of Cooper’s children and dropped the investigation.”
A school system in Florida might decide to bring back paddling. Though seldom used, corporal punishment is legal in schools in 19 States, including Florida.
New school board member and former principle Carol Ely is an advocate of corporal punishment. When she takes her seat on the board, the old standard of discipline will be revisited.
Ely was the principal of Shady Hill Elementary in Ocala, Fla., for 14 years. She says that, in her experience, paddling is far more effective than other methods of discipline, such as suspension.
“The return rate of children for corporal punishment has been almost zero,” she said.
Some parents are in favor of the idea, such as Linda McClean: “I would let them get a spanking and when they get home they would get another one for disrespecting school.”
But others disagree with the practice.
“No one should ever hit my kid. It should never be allowed,” said parent Jerrilyn Taylor.
Ely will pursue making corporal punishment an option when she joins the board next month.
Convenience comes with a price. That’s definitely the case with microwaves. If you’re thinking of zapping your veggies, you may want to think again.
A study published in Bioeclectromagnetics in 2008 found that cooking asparagus in the microwave reduces the vitamins available.
In 2001, a study was published in the Journal of Nutrition which suggested that heating garlic in the microwave for one minute inactivates alliinase, an enzyme in garlic that fights cancer.
In 2003, an article in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture showed that microwaving broccoli can remove as much as 97 percent of its antioxidants.
Microwaving may seem like the quickest and best option when preparing food. Although it may be the quickest, it is by no means the best. Not only do you lose essential nutrients when you choose to microwave your food, it also affects the taste and texture.
Instead of microwaving, try steaming.
Some entrepreneurial students in Massachusetts are using the restrictions on school lunches as a way to make a little extra money. A black market for chocolate syrup is forming. The sugary substance sells for 50 cents a squeeze.
On Aug. 1, chocolate milk became a thing of the past for students at Greater New Bedford Vocational-Technical High School. But that hasn’t stopped students from making their own.
“Of course they got rid of dessert, (but) flavored milk … I don’t understand why we can’t have that,” student Paige Lame told the Standard Times.
The rules also reduce the amount of protein students can have while increasing their servings of fruits and vegetables.
Students are largely not in favor of the new rules. Massachusetts introduced new lunchroom guidelines this year, as have many schools across the Nation.
“You’re paying more for less,” said student Erik Cortez of New Bedford. “I get it, but why should they have the right to tell you what you can and can’t eat?”
If students don’t eat the lunch, then the program is of no benefit, a fact that the Federal government seems to have overlooked. More students are bringing their lunch or just throwing away what they are given in the cafeteria.
“Last year, my son didn’t bring lunch. This year, he’s bringing lunch because he’s hungry,” said a parent of a New Bedford student.
In Wisconsin, students have taken to YouTube to protest.