Archive for June, 2007

Don Siegleman and Richard Scrushy Are Going to Prison

I must admit that I am mildly surprised by this outcome. Former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman and HealthSouth founder and former CEO Richard Scrushy has been sentenced to a combined 170 months in federal prison for their crimes of bribery, conspiracy, and mail fraud. Neither man is eligible for parole.

I assumed that there would be some jail time, but Siegelman’s sentence of seven years, four months and Scrushy’s sentence of six years, ten months was more than I thought either man would receive. It is somewhat comforting to see the justice system actually punish criminals, despite being (in)famous and having high-priced attorneys.

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Wrestler Chris Benoit and Family Are Dead in a Murder/Suicide

There are no words to describe how troubling the news is that WWE wrestler Chris Benoit has committed suicide after murdering his own wife and seven-year-old son. Please pray for the extended family of Benoit and his wife Nancy during this incredibly difficult time.

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Chemical Ali Will Get the Death Penalty

It is good to see justice prevail. Ali Hassan al-Majid, the former Ba’athist Iraqi Defense Minister under Saddam Hussein, has been sentenced to die for for genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. “Chemical Ali,” as he is commonly known, will be hung along with other Saddam loyalists for their role in murdering an estimated 182,000 Kurds.

The government of Iraqi Kurdistan has released a statement concerning the death sentences of Ali and the other killers, saying that the difference between how these men were tried and convicted and how they carried out their own “justice” during the genocide of the Kurdish people “could not be more stark.” The statement also declared their prosecution under a fair system to be “a triumph for the rule of law.”

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Restaurateur Bob Evans Has Died

I have honestly never dined in a Bob Evans restaurant. Although it is a well-known chain in the U.S., there are no locations in Alabama, where I live. However, I have passed them on the interstate when traveling in other states, and once upon a time, I worked for a competitor.

Despite having never visited any of his restaurants, I am familiar with the story of Bob Evans, the man, and I am sure that he will be dearly missed by those who knew him and loved him and his restaurants.

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President Bush Vetoes Embryonic Stem Cell Legislation… Again

For the second time, George W. Bush has vetoed a bill which would authorize federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. Following his veto, the President had some words to share concerning science and morality: “America is a nation founded on the principle that all human life is sacred. And our conscience calls us to pursue the possibilities of science in a manner that respects human dignity and upholds our moral values.” He went on to state clearly that “destroying human life in the hopes of saving human life is not ethical.”

For all the grief that President Bush gets for being “stubborn,” the pro-embryo-destruction crowd is far worse. Embryonic stem cells shouldn’t even be an issue anymore since new research indicates that adult cells can be returned to pluripotency. Nevertheless, proponents of embryonic research are still vehemently fighting to get the federal government to pay for it, stating that they will continue to bring it up until the issue has enough Congressional support to override a veto or until there is a pro-embryo-destruction President in the White House. How sad.

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No Physical Contact Allowed at a Virginia School

Kilmer Middle School in Vienna, Virginia has an unusual school policy: no physical contact whatsoever is allowed between students at the school. Naturally, that means no kissing, hugging, or hand-holding is permitted. But the rule also prohibits non-romantic touching such has back-slaps, high-fives, and even handshakes!

It is understandable that school officials would want to limit inappropriate contact between student, but banning all touching seems incredibly excessive to me and possibly an example of a solution being worse than the problem.

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Major Offensive Launched against Al-Qaeda in Iraq

The troop surge in Iraq is now complete, and a major offensive is underway. American troops are actively engaging al-Qaeda in Iraq, seeking to “destroy” the terrorist group which continues to keep the Iraqi nation in a state of turmoil. U.S. forces began the operation near the city of Baqubah, which is a known al-Qaeda stronghold north of Baghdad.

I pray that the efforts of our brave men and women are successful.

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