Archive for September, 2011

Few people would mourn the passing of radical U.S. cleric Anwar al-Aulaqi. However, his reported death from a U.S. air strike raises the long-standing question over President Obama’s insistence that he can unilaterally label a citizen as a terrorist and order his killing. It is one of the policies (of many) that Obama continued from his predecessor, George W. Bush, and was one of the subjects of my column yesterday in the Los Angeles Times.

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Awkward. Primera (Texas) Police Chief Joe Rodriguez recently sent his opponent for the office of constable, Robert Lopez, text that contained transgender porn. Oops.
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A new study from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy has identified an area of young adults who have been overlooked by prior campaigns: young evangelicals. The study found 80 percent of unmarried evangelical young adults have had sex. That is virtually the same (8 percent below) the national average. With a campaign infused with religiosity this year and all of the talk of “real America” versus urban America, the study challenges stereotypes.
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In New York, Clyde Gardner, 57, hatched a unique plan to kill his ex-girlfriend that involved skinning a bear, hiding among garbage cans, and walking on all fours. After the plan proved a bit too complex, he returned to that old favorite: the car crash. It all ended without an injury when Gardner was accused by the would-be hit man. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced this week.

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Earlier today, I posted another case out of Illinois where an officer arrested a citizen for recording him in public — only to have the charges later dropped without any disciplining of the officer. Now in New York city we have another alleged case where an officer detains a citizen over public videotaping — not of him, mind you, but of ground zero. Meredith Dodson of Georgia says that Officer Mark DeSimone not only detained her but became threatening with her and other citizens who objected to his arbitrary action over her taking a photo of the famous site.
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A family in Pakistan is living in poverty and avoiding neighbors calling for their deaths. Their offense? The oldest daughter was raped and the family did not kill her as demanded as a matter of honor. Unlike hundreds of such girls killed in honor killings each year, Kainat Soomro, 17, is being supported by her family and refuses to back down in demanding justice for her kidnapping and gang rape.
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We have yet another person arrested for recording a police officer in public. Louis Frobe felt he was wrongly stopped for speeding and decided to use his phone to videotape and record the stop and its surroundings. When he held the phone outside of the window to videotape the surrounding area, the officer proceeded to arrest him and charge him with a felony in Illinois. The arresting officer is identified in a lawsuit as Ralph H. Goar of the Village of Lindenhurst.
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