September 23rd, 2012

[Random] Hot Fuzz swan
  • jesskat

Houston officer kills double amputee in wheelchair

HOUSTON (AP) — A Houston police officer shot and killed a one-armed, one-legged man in a wheelchair Saturday inside a group home after police say the double amputee threatened the officer and aggressively waved a metal object that turned out to be a pen.

Police spokeswoman Jodi Silva said the man cornered the officer in his wheelchair and was making threats while trying to stab the officer with the pen. At the time, the officer did not know what the metal object was that the man was waving, Silva said.

She said the man came "within inches to a foot" of the officer and did not follow instructions to calm down and remain still.

"Fearing for his partner's safety and his own safety, he discharged his weapon," Silva told The Associated Press.

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As someone in the comments wondered, how does a one-armed person move his wheelchair and wave a pen at the same time? (Also, tag suggestions welcome.)
nevel 1 snake ownage

Federal judge says no constitutional right to secret ballot in Boulder case

Saying there is no fundamental right to a secret ballot, a federal judge Friday dismissed a lawsuit filed by elections integrity activists that challenged whether counties can print ballots with identifying numbers that critics say can be traced back to individual voters easily.

Denver U.S. District Judge Christine Arguello first denied a request by the Citizen Center, a group that advocates transparency in elections, to block counties temporarily from printing ballots with identifying bar codes.

Arguello then dismissed the entire case, filed against Secretary of State Scott Gessler and the clerks in Boulder, Chaffee and Eagle counties.

"The court made the right decision," Gessler said Friday afternoon. "The fact is, with our new rules and guidelines, voter secrecy is better protected now than ever before."

Marilyn Marks of Aspen, founder of the Citizen Center, said she was stunned by the outcome.

"We came in confident the court would agree with us," Marks said, "and to hear the court say that it is all right for the government and all of the election workers in Boulder County to have access to how we vote is absolutely shocking."

The lawsuit was aimed at preventing Boulder County in particular from using a system that printed a series of bar codes and numbers on ballots. The system was meant to be a work-around to comply with an emergency rule put in place by Gessler that counties could not use ballots with identifying markings.

Gessler issued the rule after activists complained ballots with identifying bar codes could be traced back to individual voters.

Arguello said activists had not shown the plaintiffs had suffered or would suffer any specific injury that could be remedied by a federal court. She said that even if a ballot could be traced back to a specific voter, it doesn't show that a person's voting rights were violated, saying there was no "fundamental right" to a secret vote in the U.S. Constitution.

Marks said county clerks, elections workers and judges and politically appointed members of local canvass boards could still look at how people voted and voters could still face intimidation.

She said her group is considering either appealing the federal ruling or filing the case in state district court.


a secret ballot is one of the most important things. I cant belive that someone would think that a secret ballot is not important.

A New Inning, Late in the Game

THE way Kevin McClatchy figured it, he had to choose. He could indulge his dream of presiding over a big-time professional sports team, or he could be open about his sexuality. The two paths didn’t dovetail.

He went with sports, and in February 1996, at the age of 33, became the youngest owner in major league baseball when he led a group of investors who bought the Pittsburgh Pirates. For the next 11 years, he was the team’s managing general partner and chief executive officer, not to mention its public face. And for all of that time, he took pains not to let his players, the owners of other teams or anyone beyond a tiny circle of family and close friends learn that he was gay.

He stepped away from the Pirates in 2007, but it took five years for him to reach the point where he felt even remotely comfortable sitting down with a journalist, as he did with me recently at his home here, about 50 miles east of Pittsburgh, to talk about his private life. Secrecy is a hard habit to break. And the world of professional sports, to which he is still connected, isn’t exactly crowded with proud, out gay men and women.

He once did some arithmetic. Over the last four decades, he said: “Tens of thousands of people have played either professional minor league baseball or major league baseball. Not one has come out and said that they’re gay while they’re playing.” Nor has any active player in the principal leagues of football, basketball or hockey, America’s three other major professional sports. That silence is a sobering, crucial reminder that for all the recent progress toward same-sex marriage and all the gay and lesbian characters popping up on television, there remains, in some quarters, a powerful stigma attached to homosexuality.

Coaches, managers and corporate chieftains in those four big sports are almost as unlikely to come out as players are. Rick Welts rated the front page of The Times last year when, as the president and chief executive officer of the Phoenix Suns basketball team, he revealed that he’s gay.

McClatchy, whose interview with The Times was his first public acknowledgment of his sexual orientation, could do considerable good. He remains well known in baseball — he’s been informally advising the mayor of Sacramento on the city’s interest in having a major league team — and is the chairman of the board of the McClatchy Company, which publishes more than two dozen newspapers, including The Sacramento Bee and The Miami Herald.Collapse )


Bree Gun

Bad Apple For Teachers

Maggie Gyllenhaal has built a reputation on playing edgy characters. Her breakout role in 2002’s “Secretary” featured the actress getting trussed up and spanked by James Spader, while 2006’s “Sherrybaby” saw her playing an ex-con mom who kidnaps her own kid. In “Hysteria,” earlier this year, she was a suffragette who falls for the man who invented the vibrator.

But the 34-year-old actress says she was actually stunned to find her latest movie, “Won’t Back Down,” to be so polarizing. What may have seemed, on the page, an easy, open-and-shut story about fighting for better education is turning into a political firestorm.

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shock-me-gray, bored, apathy

More Americans now commit suicide than are killed in car crashes as miserable economy takes its toll

*Deaths from suicide up 15pc with fears more deaths go unaccounted
*$56m suicide prevention plan being rolled out after shocking statistics
*Harsher penalties for drink driving credited with reducing road deaths

PUBLISHED: 10:03 EST, 22 September 2012 | UPDATED: 11:59 EST, 23 September 2012

Suicide is the cause of more deaths than car crashes, according to an alarming new study.
The number of people who commit suicide in the U.S. has drastically increased while deaths from car accidents have dropped, making suicide the leading cause of injury death.

Suicides via falls or poisoning have risen significantly and experts fear that there could be many more unaccounted for, particularly in cases of overdose.

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