October 9, 2006
RE THE anonymous caller to Jill Porter who left the message that the way to stop gun violence is to "make every male black teenager take target practice. " I am a 41-year-old married white father who grew up in Northeast Philadelphia, and live in Queen Village. I am grateful that I have never been poor and was raised in a two-parent household by a mother and father who loved me and my sister. Technically, I have nothing in common with most of the perps and victims involved in gun violence.
June 27, 1996
The cowards again have drawn near from the shadows, killing 19 U.S. service personnel with a truck bomb in Saudi Arabia and wounding nearly 400. It is a tragedy that saddens the nation. The outrage is no less moving because there is little novelty left in the horror, just in the numbers. At some level, soldiers expect that they may die, but it ought not to be like this. As ever, there are questions. And it may be some time before there are answers, if there ever are. Early indications were that Saudis unhappy with their monarchy and its defense relationship with the United States - and perhaps that government's different view of what it believes God commands - made targets of America's sons and daughters.
June 20, 1986 |
While the tragedy of Len Bias's death remains clouded with suspicions about drugs, University of Maryland officials are confident that Bias did not die of Marfan syndrome. Marfan's involves a weakening of the connective tissue of the heart that can result in a ruptured aorta. It is the disease that killed Olympic volleyball player Flo Hyman in January, and it is the reason Robert Liburd has not been allowed to play basketball at Temple. The reason the Maryland people feel certain that Bias's cardiac and respiratory failure were not caused by Marfan syndrome is because they test all basketball players for it. And the reason they test for it is because Bias is the third Maryland basketball player to die from a heart-related problem since 1976.
September 12, 2001 |
I never thought I would see a story bigger or experience an event more stunning than the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on Nov. 22, 1963, and the murder of his assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. But the suicide plane crashes that destroyed the 110-story twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City and the attack on the Pentagon in Washington are the biggest stories of my journalism career, which spans nearly 40 years. Those attacks were a terroristic act of war that has spread fear and anger across the nation unlike anything since Pearl Harbor of Dec. 7, 1941.
October 31, 1996 |
Before tragedy struck, brothers Victor, Russell and Stacy Krass, had planned to someday expand their growing men's clothing business with a store in Center City's Gallery at Market East. Victor Krass is opening that store Saturday. Russell and Stacy were killed in a robbery at their Krass Plus store at 4674 Frankford Ave. in May 1993. "You have to go forward," Victor Krass said. "My brothers would have done the same thing. " The new location on the Gallery's third level will be the third Krass Plus.
December 25, 2001 |
In the Bedroom is the best film of the year, in part because it grapples with the question of the year. If a loved one were brutally attacked, would we seek justice or revenge? Todd Field's shocking drama about this insufficiency of options takes place in picturesque Camden, Maine, a seaside village where grief comes in waves. This is a sun-dappled corner of the world, in which windswept fields slope down to the infinite Atlantic. The imagery, familiar from the canvases of Andrew Wyeth and Edward Hopper, conveys Yankee values of solitude and simple, uncultivated nature.
October 3, 1997 |
Despite its title, The Locusts owes more to the technique of the spider in luring its prey into a fatal trap. An ambitious and sometimes unwieldy blend of smoldering passion and psychological torment, The Locusts plays as an enjoyable if rather melodramatic homage to Tennessee Williams. John Patrick Kelley has chosen to make his directing debut in terrain that is both familiar and difficult, but he ultimately finds his own view of a '50s tragedy steeped in nostalgia. The Locusts is set in Kansas in the late '50s, a period that Kelley evokes scrupulously and resourcefully.
May 2, 1986 |
In recent years, American movies - most notably Tootsie and Victor/ Victoria - have made both profit and sense by blurring sexual lines to deflate mostly male assumptions. In sobering contrast to these comedies of transvestism, The Mystery of Alexina is a tragedy of transsexuality. Rene Feret's film, which opens a one-week run today at the Theater of the Living Arts, is a raw curiosity that musters a kind of of clumsy sincerity that is hard to dislike. If he fails to satisfactorily explore the moral and social implications of his central story, Feret still makes The Mystery of Alexina a moving experience.
November 9, 1989 |
They have counseled survivors of some of the worst disasters of this century. When a devastating earthquake rocked Armenia and killed 20,000 people, Drs. Aron I. Belkin and Yuri A. Alexandrovsky were called in to help emergency workers and victims. When an explosion tore through the Chernobyl atomic energy station and lethal doses of radiation leaked into the air, these two Muscovites coordinated the relief and cleanup effort. And last month, by pure coincidence, when an earthquake shook northern California, Belkin and Alexandrovsky were there.
August 25, 1987 |
Sicily Minor, 9, was walking through the Wissahickon Valley in Fairmount Park on a sunny Sunday when tragedy struck. Sicily was with Margaret Robertson, 37, when Robertson's 2-year-old son, Nolan Robertson Deal, fell through a partially open sewer and was swept away in a rushing stream of sewage water. The boy is still missing. "We were walking through the park," Sicily said last night. "It was around 4 o'clock. He got out of his wagon and ran through the grass. "He tripped on the pothole," she said, referring to the 25-inch sewer manhole that was ajar, leaving a 16-inch opening.