Thursday, March 31, 2005

Stolen Fetus

Well, I thought I had heard everything, but no,...
Associated Press Writer
Published March 30, 2005, 5:36 AM CST

LOS ANGELES -- Police are searching for two women who they believe made off with a preserved 13-week-old fetus from an exhibit at the California Science Center. The fetus, infused with polymers in a process called plastination to prevent decay, was part of a traveling display entitled "Body Worlds 2: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies."

A surveillance video showed the suspects removing the fetus from an unlocked display case on the third floor between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. Saturday during the round-the-clock closing weekend of the exhibit, police Detective Jimmy Render said Tuesday. Other people were inside the room during the heist but may not have been aware of it, he said. "There's no indication at this time of the motives behind the stealing of the plastinated fetus. ... There had been no threats," the detective said.

"Body Worlds 2" and its predecessor, "Body Worlds," use plastinated human bodies and organs to provide information on human anatomy, illnesses and issues such as smoking and obesity. The displays, which feature bodies in natural or whimsical poses, such as playing chess or riding a skateboard, have drawn critical and public praise.

The theft was the first ever involving the "Body Worlds" displays, which have been seen by millions of people worldwide, and by about 875,000 at the California Science Center alone. It also was the first from the science center since it opened in 1998, the museum said.

"We are deeply concerned and disappointed by the theft of this invaluable and irreplaceable specimen," Angelina Whalley, director of the Institute for Plastination, said in a statement. "How can somebody do this ... it's such a disrespect," she said.

My guess is that the two women were anti-abortionists, these people break all kind of laws to make their point.

But a second thought crossed my mind. Maybe the women thought there was some kind of monetary value in the preserved fetus. Hmmm, should we keep our eye out for an usual post on E-Bay?

Cat + Gun = Attempted Castration

Here is a news story about the dangers of guns and pets;
March 9, 2005, 1:18 PM

BATES TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) -- An Upper Peninsula man cooking in his kitchen was shot after one of his cats knocked his 9mm handgun onto the floor, discharging the weapon, Michigan State Police said. Joseph Stanton, 29, of Bates Township in Iron County, was shot in his lower torso around 6 p.m. Tuesday, the state police post in Iron River reported. He was transported to Iron County Community Hospital.

Michelle Sand, a spokeswoman at the Iron River hospital, said Stanton was treated there before being transferred to Marquette General Hospital for further treatment. But Marcie Miller, a representative of the Marquette facility, said there was no record of the hospital receiving a patient by that name.

A telephone message seeking comment was left Wednesday at Stanton's home. State police said he was cooking at his stove when the cat knocked the loaded gun off the kitchen counter behind him.

So after thinking about this story for a few minutes, I think I've identified five problems and created some solutions.

1) The cat. All cats should be killed as this incident clearly indicates an inner hatred towards humans by felines. We can now see that cats have evolved well past scratching and pissing on humans to actually using our own weapons against us. They should all be put to sleep before they decide to use weapons of mass destruction on humanity.

2) Guns. It's now quite obvious how dangerous these weapons have become as even animals are figuring out how to use them. We should ban guns now before animals like deer acquire firearms knowledge and create a human hunting season.

3) Stoves. This appliance has become too complicated for modern humans and they should be banned. We now have had the microwave for several decades, an appliance that requires much less thought process thus less chance at being distracted when a cat may want to shoot at us. A second advantage to an all-microwave future is that problem 1) "killing of all cats" could be done more rapidly using the microwave.

4) The Upper Penninsula. This part of the state of Michigan should be given to Canada. Any place that the residents take pride in calling themselves Yoopers should not be part of the United States. There are too many crazy people up there evidenced by the fact that they teach their cats to shoot guns. Let them crazy Yoopers become crazy Canadians.

5) Humans. I won't advocate the killing of all humans just because some are so stupid that they leave loaded 9mm handguns around for the housecat to attempt murders. But I do think we should probably have some kind of IQ test for gun owners. If they are too stupid then they should have their guns taken away and then they should be castrated so as to not breed more stupid gun owners. On the other hand maybe this man recognized how stupid he was and wanted castration performed by his own cat using a handgun. It's possible stupid gun owners will solve this problem on their own, just by being stupid.

So, if we apply all my suggestions we can vastly reduce the number of cat shootings of humans. In a catless, gunless, Yooperless country of microwave-only intelligent cooks we may yet reach Utopia.

Monday, March 28, 2005

The NRA, Warmongers of America

The article I link about the Minnesota school shooting includes this tidbit from an NRA spokesperson;

Arm teachers? All options should be considered to prevent rampages such as the Minnesota school shooting that took 10 lives — including making guns available to teachers, a top National Rifle Association leader said yesterday. "I'm not saying that that means every teacher should have a gun or not, but what I am saying is we need to look at all the options at what will truly protect the students," said Sandra Froman, the NRA's first vice president.

There is no doubt in my mind that the NRA wants America to be a war zone. On some of these recent shootings the NRA persists in the notion that the incidents wouldn't have happened or could have been lessened by arming the victims. After the Atlanta courthouse shooting the NRA said "arm judges." They did seem to be silent after that religious meeting in the Wisconsin hotel, maybe arming preachers is too hot a subject.

What the NRA refuses to acknowledge is that these shootings would still have involved bloodbaths because the perpetrators had something on their side that no loaded gun can prevent, and that's quick surprise. The teacher in Minnesota would have been shot long before reacting to the surprise attack. The minister in the hotel in Minnesota, dead before trading the Bible for a handgun. No judge could have saved their lives reaching under their robe for a pistol after the bullets struck their body.

The NRA just keeps plugging away though. Their answer is always to up the ante and arm everyone. Their answer is for people with guns to try to shoot people with guns. If that's not the definition of war, I don't know what the definition might be. Ask Iraqis and American soldiers, is shooting at people with guns a war? The NRA wants all out war in America, anything to preserve their "right to own guns."

Arming teachers has got to be one of the stupidest ideas the NRA has come up with. Dealing with students drugged out on steroids or Prozac or illegal substances or going through a hormone imbalance could be enough for some angry teacher to be the shooter, not the students. I hardly trust EVERY teacher to be emotionally controlled enough to carry a gun into a classroom, or even to be one hundred percent safe with a loaded weapon.

But OK, let's allow the NRA to have their way. Arm the teachers, because there will be a day that a teacher loses control and shoots a student. Then we can listen to some lame brained NRA spokesperson advocate arming students in response, "to protect themselves" from armed teachers. Go ahead NRA and arm the teachers, because I think that there will be a day some teacher kills a student with a gun at a school and that very same day most of the country will point their finger at the NRA and finally say "shut up!"

The Schiavo Lesson

Unless you've been in hiding for the last few weeks, you must know something about the Terri Shiavo situation. As I've watched this unfold, sad in so many respects, I see a huge lesson to learn from this. If Terri had made a living will stating how she felt, this whole thing would never have become such a public news story. If she had written down somewhere what she wanted to happen to her, this would not have been so complicated.

I'm here now to state my own feelings. I do NOT want to be Terri Shiavo. I do NOT want to be kept alive for years in a comatose state. I do NOT want to be on life support. I do NOT want a feeding tube keeping me in this world.

I'm not afraid to die. When the time comes to exit this existence, I do not want to prolong an essentially worthless life. And I most certainly don't want some situation where people are arguing over whether I should stay or go.

I believe in God and I believe in an existence beyond our present reality. I certainly don't know what lies beyond death, but there is no sense in obscenely prolonging passing into that next phase. Doing so is really nothing but fear of the unknown. Or fear that one's beliefs are wrong.

I can't even fathom the thinking of those who would want to stretch their life out in a comatose state. Particularily those who profess to be religious and have gathered outside Terri Schiavo's nursing home protesting in indignation. Those same people who never met Terri, who can't for a second know what it must be like being in Terri's body. Are these religious types that have assembled just afraid for their own selves, using Ms. Shiavo as their alter ego?

And what angers me about those religious hipocrites and their so-called "culture of life" is why they are not protesting every death sentence about to be completed. Unless they are so out of touch with news in America (apparently not so out of touch that they knew of Terri Schiavo) they must surely know that a certain percentage of those who have been put to death were innocent of the crime. But even if they were guilty, these religious one-sided thinkers won't give them a chance to become reborn to religion (which should be exactly what they want) and to then do something good in the final years of their lives within the confines of prison.

"Thou shalt not kill," for these religious fruitcakes, apparently has some footnotes that I've never seen written in their Bible. Their Commandment allows for killing of innocent prisoners, or for killing Iraqis who never attacked us. The fundementalists that yelp about a "culture of life" have all sorts of loopholes that just are not written in "Thou shalt not kill."

I'm hear to tell those fundementalists that I don't want any of your misguided help if I'm comatose. They must stay away from my bedside when they pull the plug because unlike them I'm not afraid of dying, I have no fear of the unknown, and God will deal with me as He/She will, not as some lunatic fundementalist would have God act.

A Return To Reason

Those of you that had noticed my disengagement from my blog must have wondered why I discontinued to post. The reasons are somewhat feeble but numerous.

First, I had become despondent over the results of the election. Even now I still have this deep apprehension about Bush's plans for another four years. Although I may not have been posting about the events of the times, I certainly have been paying attention and I have not been wrong in worrying about what will transpire. In the Bush first quarter of a year, the slide of America continues.

Second, the holidays overtook me. It seemed as if suddenly I lost all of my free time, or least the amount of time required to sit down at the keyboard, do the research and compose something relevant and personally important.

Third, after the new year began a combination of cabin fever and job obligations. My employment increased the amount of time required of me. And I can't understate what the effect of this long winter up here in MIchigan has had on my spirit. Until recently I was half wondering if global warming was here to stay and whether the Detroit area would always remain in a deep chill. Call it cabin fever writing block.

Finally, I was not happy with the general tone of my blog, I felt it was becoming my personal complaint department for events of the day. I hope to change that tone this time around. Surely I will still have my complaints, but I hope to intersperse those complaints with some posts of humor.

Ultimately I can't remain silent. I have a big mouth I guess, but with little opportunity to express my views fully except in this piece of the net.