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.