Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks’

25
Oct

poverty, uganda, outed jurors, and other tales

I read too many depressing  news reports tonight.   I’m feeling mad and frustrated.

In the New York Times I read that Uganda is going to reopen a bill that will allow the government to impose the death penalty against gay men and women (Lesbians).

I discussed this topic last year with horror, but then I was under the impression that Uganda had softened on this issue.  Not true – not in the least.

The excruciating part of this story?  American influence fanned the flames.  Rick Warren – the evangelical pastor of the huge Saddle Back Church, reportedly helped draft the original bill (see Washington Post reference article.) Warren was assisted by Reverend Lou Engle, another popular evangelist who has no business proselytizing hate in the name of religion in this country, let alone to the poor people of Uganda.

If that wasn’t depressing enough, I read about the extreme poverty in our suburbs.  The suburbs, I thought?  People are going hungry there, too?  Yes, it’s true.

The chart below, from the NY Times, explains the extreme rise of poverty in American suburbs.  Places once thought of as the best place to raise children, are looking toward to local “soup lines” or “Food Pantries” to help feed their families.  The great challenge with the newly poor in the suburbs is the availability of the kinds of services that cities have to aid the poor and the hungry.

One issue is due to suburb dwellers having a longer commute to reach help – (problematic when your car is repossessed and bus service is not available).

To access the NY Times article, click:   Outside Cleveland, Snapshots of Poverty’s Surge in the Suburbs

Published Oct. 24, 2011 New York Times

And, then I read how the media is making such a big hullabaloo over outing the jurors in the Casey Anthony trial.

I ask you, what good will that do other than allow the haters to practice their hate anew?

Yes, the jurors were not real jurors in the sense they failed to consider all the evidence before them,  but it’s over now.  I’ve let it go.

Disturbing and showering the jurors on the Casey Anthony trial with hate does no one any good – it’s not going to change anything.

Sometimes I think it’s best to not read the news and stick with pleasurable reading.  But then I tell my self, that’s not good either – it’s important to be aware of what’s happening in the world.  The trick is to take it in stride….easier said than done.

Aaannnnd, now we have a hurricane (which may turn into a tropical storm, we hope) looming.  It’s got South Florida in its “cone of uncertainty.”   The hurricane is a she and she’s a category 3 now.  Her name is Rina.

Lastly, if you want to nominate someone for the title of “Central Floridian of the Year”, the Orlando Sentinel is taking nominations on its website. The link to nominate someone is: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/opinion/os-sg-central-floridian-of-the-year,0,206265.storygallery

I can think of a few folks worthy of this honor!

That’s all the news for tonight!

I’m in the middle of reading “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” …  It is excellent, provides much food for thought…..

So, pleasant dreams and have a great tomorrow!

23
Oct

Boedeker, Books and Blogging

In today’s Orlando Sentinel, there are two pieces by Hal Boedeker that are quite good.

I always enjoy reading Hal Boedeker’s take on the Casey Anthony saga – he’s so down to earth and asks questions that people want to talk about.  His columns on the Anthony story are always popular, always generating hundreds of comments.  There was a time when I’d read the comments with interest, I even commented once, too.  But as time wore on, the comments became so ugly and over the top, filled with such hateful vitriol that was (and still is) too bizarre for my taste.

But, Hal Boedeker’s work is always excellent; here are links to today’s two stories that contain interesting analysis from the lawyer analysts covering the trial.

  1. Analysis and Q and A with Bill Shaeffer, Richard Hornsby, Mark NeJame and Diana Tennis.
  2. Interview with Bill Shaeffer, who says trial was Soap Opera

It’s interesting how we just can’t stop talking about his case! It’s still an open book to be dissected.  When Boedeker discusses Anthony in a column, he’ll get hundreds and hundreds of comments.   Even when I write about the case, the number of visitors to my blog literally triples.   And when the trial began, starting with jury selection, and right up until the end, I’d receive well over two thousand visitors a day, often more.

It was really a weird feeling to know so many people read my thoughts….  I never expected that – ever.

A lot of blogs and media outlets experienced huge increases in Internet traffic as a result of this case. This was a good thing because most of the bigger blogs or media outlets are able to turn the Internet traffic into a bigger revenue stream for them. WordPress puts advertising on blogs like mine for the revenue stream, too.   I have no control over the ads you may see unless I want to pay WordPress to prevent them from posting their ads.   I’m more than happy to let them advertise!  I hope they make some money from their blog sites since they offer virtually everything on WordPress dot com completely free to the blogger.

Anyway, now I forget what the point of all this was going to be!

Oh yes, public interest in this story.  I’m still interested in the Anthony case, but not as before.  There are many days that I forget about it, and that’s good.

I stopped reading for pleasure when this case began.  Now I’ve started reading a lot again.  I read three books this week.   I finished the Jacyee Dugard book about her years of captivity; titled, “A Stolen Life: A Memoir.”   I’m glad I read it, but it was difficult to get through because of the extreme  suffering she lived with for so many years (she was abducted at age 11.)   I have a great respect for her and her will to survive.  It’s a very quick read, told in her own words, (without a Ghostwriter’s help), and for that I was impressed.

But the book I recommend so highly is “ROOM” by Emma Donoghue, written in 2010.  It is absolutely breathtaking.  The story is narrated by a five year old who was born as a result of his mother being abducted at age 19 and held prisoner in a shed in her captors backyard.  Her son, Jack, has never been outside the shed to experience the real world.  The relationship between mother and son is captivating; and the situation they’re in is made horrifying by their captor.

I don’t want to say too much about ROOM because I don’t want to spoil the story for you.

I  can’t decide what to read next!  I have so many lined up in my Nook just waiting to be devoured and even more on my book shelves, too.

Well, I think I’m going to read “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” by Rebecca Skoot next.

So, the weekend’s officially over now.   It was a great one, too:  Live Theatre, shopping, babysitting my niece, and reading…. perfect in every way!

 

 

%d bloggers like this: