May 15, 2013
WITH three first-degree murder verdicts against Kermit Gosnell, we can call him a baby-killer without the political freight that that term usually carries in the fight over abortion rights. There was no ambiguity in his actions, no debate over when a fetus becomes viable when he performed his illegal late-term abortions of some babies who were born alive. No one would defend his actions as legal, or protected by Roe v. Wade. The verdict may bring to a close the gruesome and horrifying details of Gosnell's butchery practice.
February 20, 2013 |
When Melissa Weiler Gerber became executive director of the Family Planning Council of Southeastern Pennsylvania in 2010, she called it "a challenging time. " The nonprofit council - which administers public funding for reproductive health services in the region - was operating in the red. Nationally, family planning funding was under renewed political attack. And Gerber, 45, was following a tough act: Dorothy Mann, 71, known during her 33-year tenure for her vision and brash style.
November 29, 2012 |
Greetings, unwitting general public! Did you realize there's a "two-track system of justice" at Philadelphia Traffic Court, according to an investigative report commissioned by Pennsylvania Chief Justice Ronald Castille, "one for the politically connected and another for the unwitting general public"? That would be us, the clueless, ticket-paying schmoes without access to our Democratic ward leader's cell. The report, required reading for anyone who still believes in fairness, justice, or Santa Claus, shows that ticket-fixing was rampant at the patronage swamp, involving at least seven judges and much of the staff, who offered a generous Friends and Family plan to the region's most politically connected.
July 30, 2012 |
TEHRAN, Iran - Iran's new message to parents: Get busy and have babies. In a major reversal of once far-reaching family planning policies, authorities are now slashing its birth-control programs in an attempt to avoid an aging demographic similar to many Western countries that are struggling to keep up with state medical and social security costs. The changes - announced in Iranian media last week - came after Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei described the country's wide-ranging contraceptive services as "wrong.
March 2, 2012
Review for judge over Obama e-mail WASHINGTON - A judicial-misconduct review has been opened against the chief federal judge in Montana for using his computer in his courthouse chambers to forward a racially insensitive e-mail about President Obama. The review was begun at the request of Judge Richard Cebull himself, as calls mounted Thursday for his resignation and legal-ethics experts predicted the incident was likely to lead to some kind of public admonishment for him. The judge, 67, an appointee of President George W. Bush, maintained that the e-mail was meant as anti-Obama rather than racist, but added, "I can obviously understand why people would be offended.
March 2, 2012 |
THE PLOT HAS thickened in "The Mystery of the Photo of the Open Casket. " Carolyn Whigham of Whigham Funeral Home, in Newark, N.J., which handled services for Whitney Houston , says the home had nothing to do with the photo. But Whigham and two ministers say they do know who took the ghoulish shot that ran in the National Enquirer . They're just not snitchin'. They say that identifying the person is up to the Houston family. Whigham told the Newark Star-Ledger yesterday that her funeral home "had no role in this shameful betrayal.
February 16, 2012
Smart people and family planning Many things in Karen Heller's column "What? Birth control? Again?" (Sunday) are false and offensive, but the claim that the Catholic Church endorses "the rhythm method, which is contraception for stupid people," takes the prize. What the church actually endorses, is natural family planning (NFP). Catholic doctors like Thomas Hilgers and his team at Creighton University are careful, intelligent scientists who publish on these subjects in peer-reviewed journals.
January 24, 2012 |
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno will be buried Wednesday in a private ceremony. And in a nod to the university to which he devoted most of his life, his family also announced Monday three days of public memorials on campus. The plan - drafted a day after Paterno's death at 85 from lung cancer - reflected a thaw in the icy relations between the family of a man who did much to further Pennsylvania State University's academic and athletic reputations and the school's leadership, which fired him over his response to child-sex-abuse allegations involving a former assistant coach.
January 22, 2012 |
Jan. 22 marks the 39th anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade decision. This Supreme Court ruling guaranteed that the constitutional right to privacy encompasses a woman's right to choose whether to continue a pregnancy to term. The decision is one of the most emotional and difficult a woman will ever make, and she must be free to decide. Yet, today, lawmakers across the country remain committed to denying women that right by rolling back the only law that keeps abortion care safe and legal.
September 2, 2011
By Jennifer Dabbs Sciubba Most experts agree that the mark of long-term success in Afghanistan will be stable governance that allows the economy, democracy, and the people to flourish. Many factors will determine that, but a major one that seems to be left out of most high-level conversations is population. Afghanistan is a country of 31 million people, but that number will double by 2035, according to the most recent U.N. projections, and could reach 126 million by midcentury.