Friday, October 21, 2005

THE AMAZON RAINFOREST is being logged out of existence at the rate of 6,000 square miles per year -- twice as fast as previously estimated.

The 33-year-old Baghdad bureau chief for the British newspaper, The Guardian, is released, apparently unharmed, after having been kidnapped and held in a dark basement for about 24 hours -- in a country where political kidnappings are routine and most abductees are killed.

A woman who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia lives in a homeless shelter with her three children. She does not like to take her medication, and there is no one to see that she does. One day she tells her family she is going to feed her children to the sharks in San Francisco Bay. Later that same day, she takes her children to a pier near Fisherman's Wharf, and drops them into the bay. When she was living in the homeless shelter, throwing her medication away, and telling her family about the voices that spoke to her inside her head, no one but her family and the shelter staff knew about her condition; no one even knew she existed. Now the whole planet knows she exists; the fact that she drowned her children by dropping them into San Francisco Bay has been reported all over the world; strangers are leaving flowers on the pier to memorialize the children; and lots of people feel that Lashaun T. Harris should be punished for what she did.

The majority leader in the House of Representatives -- one of the most powerful individuals in the United States and a lawmaker in the most influential country in the world -- is booked on charges of money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering. In the mugshot taken of this congressional leader at the time of his booking for a felony that carries a maximum sentence of life in prison, he is grinning broadly.

Sometimes, when I read the news, I feel I am in a short story by Kafka or a play by Godot.


Anonymous said...

Did you know California has a law that might have allowed her family to get her some long-term help - they just haven't gotten around to implementing it? People need to ask their county commissioners why they don't want to implement a law that is working so well everywhere else. I think the answer is a bunch of misguided civil libertarians thinking that people with mental illnesses' rights will be taken away - who don't seem to care that they can't choose for themselves, and the rights of people like these kids have to count for something. See this website:

Andrea Rusin said...

Your post inspired me to blog about LaShaun Harris. It's very rough, but you might want to pop over and read it.

Now that I think about it, I should probably trackback to your post so that the link is obvious. I'll see if I can figure that out. Possibly not. it's late. But I'll try.

Kathy said...

Thank you for telling me that, Andrea! I went over and read your post; I liked it.

I used to have that Scribe template, too. :)