Daily Archives: October 12, 2011

Occupy Atlanta Renames Park after Troy Davis

Woodruff Park in Atlanta, Georgia, USA

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Four days into their occupation of Woodruff Park, Occupy Atlanta has renamed the six-acre downtown green space “Troy Davis Park.”

The renaming honors the Savannah man executed by the state on September 21 for the 1989 shooting death of police officer Mark Allen MacPhail.

Mr. Davis’s case drew worldwide attention and appeals for clemency because of doubt about his guilt, and seven of nine witnesses recanted or changed their testimony.

On Friday, when Occupy Atlanta took over Woodruff Park, a handful of participants were wearing “I Am Troy Davis” tee-shirts.

It’s not likely the city’s parks department will recognize the renaming. The park is named for Robert W. Woodruff, president of Coca-Cola Co. from 1923 to 1954. A philanthropist, Woodruff gave the land to the city in 1971, and it was opened as a park two years later.

The group said it met with Atlanta police officials and were warned Monday the department would begin enforcing ordinances. It’s not clear if any arrests have been made as have occurred in other Occupy rallies in other cities

Via Patch.com.

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On This Day…

Confederate General Robert E. Lee poses in a l...

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In 1870, General Robert E. Lee died in Lexington, Virginia at age 63.

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Breaking: Suspect of Salon Shooting in Custody

Seal beach

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Six persons are dead and three more are in critical condition after a shooting today at a salon in the southern California community of Seal Beach, the Seal Beach Police Department Sgt. Steve Bowles said.

A suspect is in custody, he said.

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“Underwear Bomber” Pleads Guilty

Crop and contrast / brightness adjust of Umar ...

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Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab, the Nigerian man accused of trying to detonate an explosive device in his underwear aboard a Christmas 2009 flight to Detroit, pleaded guilty today.

AbdulMutallab was indicted on charges including attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction, conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism, and possession of a firearm or destructive device in furtherance of an act of violence.

AbdulMutallab was a passenger on Northwest Airlines flight 253 en route from the Netherlands. After returning from the bathroom, he pulled a blanket over his head, “pushed the plunger on the bomb and prepared to die,” Jonathan Tukel, chief of the National Security Unit for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of Michigan, said in opening statements.

U.S. officials say the terror group al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula was behind the alleged bombing attempt.

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Supreme Court Decides Whether “Right to Sue” Means “Right to Arbitration”

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, U.S. Supreme Court justice.

“The statute is meant to apply to ordinary people, and if an ordinary person not schooled in the law read ‘You have a right to sue,’ wouldn’t they understand that to mean: I have a right to sue in court?” Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg asked. Image via Wikipedia

When Congress writes legislation that says, “You have a right to sue,” why doesn’t that mean that consumers have a right to file a lawsuit in court?

That is the question before the United States Supreme Court.

The case is about whether customers unhappy about hidden costs of the credit cards they received from CompuCredit can sue the company in court, or whether they must abide by the fine print in their contracts that said all disputes must be handled by arbitration.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit said the cardholders could sue after discovering their Aspire Visa cards came with a $300 credit limit — and $257 in fees.

The court agreed with cardholders that the Credit Repair Organizations Act explicitly says that consumers have the right to sue.

The Stanford University law professor representing CompuCredit, said that arbitration satisfies that right. His argument launched the Justices into rounds of questioning on the same point.

“The statute is meant to apply to ordinary people, and if an ordinary person not schooled in the law read ‘You have a right to sue,’ wouldn’t they understand that to mean: I have a right to sue in court?” Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg asked.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. added: “If somebody, you know, hits your car and you jump out angrily and you say: ‘I’m going to sue you.’ You are not likely to say: ‘I’m going to bring a cause of action against you.’ ”

The attorney representing cardholders agreed that Congress made its intentions clear. The statute does not mention arbitration.

The case is CompuCredit Corp. v. Greenwood.

Via The Washington Post.

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Filed under Business, Law, National, The Supremes

Congress to Debate Bill Preventing Medically-Necessary Abortions

Cliff Stearns

Representative Cliff Stearns does not have a uterus. Image via Wikipedia

You may want to sit down for this one. Congress is going to start debating HR 358, the “Protect Life Act.” Sounds good, right?

HR 358 has been nicknamed the “Let Women Die” Act, as it would allow hospitals that receive federal funds to turn away women seeking abortions to save their lives.

The bill also proposes outlawing federal funds from going to health plans that cover abortion services. It would also make it impossible to stop federal funds from going to health organizations that don’t support abortion rights.

HR 358 was penned Representative Joe Pitts, a Pennsylvania Republican and member of the House’s Pro-Life Caucus.

When it was introduced in February, Rep. Pitts’s spokesperson told Talking Points Memo that the bill isn’t newly killing women; it reinforces hospitals’ already-existing rights to refuse to save them.

Since the 1970s, existing law affirmed the right to refuse involvement in abortion in all circumstances.

The Protect Life Act simply extends these provisions to the new law by inserting a provision that mirrors Hyde-Weldon. In other words, this bill is only preserving the same rights that medical professionals have had for decades.

I’d just like to take this opportunity to point out that the “Protect Life” designation does not, in fact, protect life; if a woman’s life-saving abortion is denied, guess what? The fetus does not survive, either.

This debate will likely be the first of many over the coming months. Next on the agenda is Florida Republican Cliff Stearns‘s request for an in-depth probe of the financial records of Planned Parenthood, to make sure they’re not trying to use taxpayer money to fund abortions for poor people. If there’s anyone who should be forced to carry pregnancies to term, it’s a woman too poor to go anywhere but Planned Parenthood for an abortion, and if there’s anything that will save the American taxpayer money, it’s making sure that as many babies as possible are born into poverty.

Votes on abortion funding earlier this year split down party lines in both the House and the Senate, which means the Republican-controlled House will probably pass this one, too.

Via Jezebel.

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Filed under Health, Law, National, Politics, Sick Sad World

Shocking: Diet Company Says Women REALLY Care About Diets

Deutsch: Das Messen des Gewichts ist ein wicht...

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File this one under “Duh.” According to a new study conducted by a weight loss company, women think about food more than sex.

Atkins surveyed nearly 1,300 women about dieting and how their weight loss goals affected their relationships. According to the study, 25% of women thought dieting was more important than their relationships. One in ten women said she would feel guiltier cheating on her diet than her partner. More than one in three said they thought about their diet more than their partners.

Let’s keep in mind here that the women studied were on Adkins‘s contact list. (In other words, these women think that the key to a healthy life is eating only bacon cheeseburgers [no buns] and never touching an apple.) I can’t imagine how they came up with these results.

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