Archive for March 3rd, 2008

Clinic May Have Infected 40,000 With HIV, Hepatitis

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

What a horrible thing to find out!! Pray that this is not the case.

LOS ANGELES — The city of Las Vegas has shut down a clinic where up to 40,000 people may have been exposed to hepatitis C and the HIV virus through the reuse of syringes and vials, officials said on Sunday.

The clinic at the heart of the scandal, the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada, “was served with an emergency suspension of its business license,” city authorities said in a statement.

Officials are asking about 40,000 people to be tested for hepatitis B and C and HIV because of unsafe medical practices at the clinic.

Health authorities launched an investigation into the clinic after six former patients were diagnosed with hepatitis. Nurses at the clinic were told “to reuse syringes when administering anesthesia” and “to reuse vials of medication,” the city said, citing a probe by public health agencies.

The local prosecutors’ office said it was closely examining the case and raised the possibility of filing charges against the center.

“It won’t happen tomorrow or the next day, but we are taking a hard, fast look at all the facts in the case,” District Attorney David Roger told KLAS-TV.

Some former patients had contacted lawyers for a possible class action suit against the clinic, local media reported.

The clinic did not comment directly on the allegations but expressed concern for patients infected and said it had undertaken new precautions.

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Hamas Firing From Civilian Homes

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

True to form, the Pali terrorist are willing to sacrifice the very people they are tasked with protecting. I just pointed out this trait to one of our commentators. It’s a shame I have an example, to post about, so soon.

JAFFA – Amid Israel’s ongoing ground operation in the Gaza Strip, the Hamas terrorist group has been drawing Israeli forces into populated civilian areas, shooting at Jewish fighters from occupied civilian homes while women and children were inside, an Israel Defense Forces commander fighting in Gaza told WND.

“Hamas terror operatives shooting at us took up positions inside civilian homes while the civilians were still inside,” said the commander, who was speaking from the outskirts of an IDF operation in Jabaliya in the northern Gaza Strip.

“The aim is to draw us into killing civilians to bring about international pressure to end our operation,” the commander said, speaking on condition his name be withheld due to Israeli military restrictions on media interviews by fighting forces.

The commander said in one case today, four Hamas snipers shot at Israeli forces about from the open window of a home where women can be clearly seen in the background.

Original Link.

“An Elegy For My Friend “Babz,” aka Barbara Seaman (1935-2008)” by Dr. Phyllis Chesler

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

She was so “Broadway,” so “Babz,” she knew everyone in town, she was the one we all went to when we needed to get an obituary into the New York Times, (she never failed), or when someone needed a trustworthy physician, politician, publisher, publicist —or the proverbial shoulder to cry on. Either “Babz” was related to them by blood, by marriage, or through her own work. Or she’d read their work, contacted them, and behold, she could find them for you.

Although I knew her for nearly forty years, I rarely called her “Babz.” Well, maybe I did once or twice, trying it on for size, but I backed down, retreated into something less familial, more respectful. I am writing this hasty elegy to honor Barbara as someone who was especially dear to me. It is a personal reflection and not a formal or historic obituary.

I did not tell her that I loved her. Friends do not always use such language. I should have told her so. Since we go back to 1970-1971, I should have known that something momentous was up. In the last seven months, I noticed that Barbara was not herself. Suddenly, she was very calm and more philosophical than usual. She had a thoughtful, almost stately reserve about her. I should have asked: “What’s going on? Why are you so…weird? ”

Most of all, I should have told her how much her support sustained and blessed me.

Barbara died at 4am today, surrounded by those who loved her. There will be many obituaries for her which will extoll her many books and crusades—she, who has been called “The Ralph Nader of the Birth Control Pill.” Were she here today, we would no doubt laugh, groan, and despair over the fact that what used to be seen as a high compliment might really not be one at all.

Barbara was the most generous feminist I have ever known. Despite countless personal tragedies, including an intermittent childhood “career” in foster care which she rarely mentioned but which appears in a number of biographical sketches which she herself vetted; two painful marriages and divorces (about which I know too much); and despite being censored and therefore economically “fined” due to her heroic and visionary exposure of the pharmaceutical industry, Barbara was unfailingly kind to everyone. She had the wisdom and the temperament to continually mentor younger feminists. More: She remained kind and even supportive to other feminists with whom she may have disagreed.

For this alone, she deserves a posthumous Nobel Prize!

Barbara shared whatever she had. She led other writers to reviewers and to literary agents. (This is quite rare). Barbara was never petty. She envied no one. She was never really angry at anyone. Actually, there are some important exceptions but I will save these stories for another time.

Often, people who know each other for a long time aren’t always sure of where they first met. I believe Barbara and I might have seen each other around town in the late sixties, but we really “met” in 1971 in Washington, D.C. when she waited to speak to me after my lecture about women and psychiatry. Whispering, she said: “Everything you’ve said about how women are used in state asylums as personal maids by the staff is true. I know. My husband is a psychiatrist.”

From that moment on, Barbara supported my work in the area of “women and madness,” which was also the title of my first book. Her personal, political, and informational support was absolutely invaluable. She stood by me when I was attacked for “exaggerating” or even “imagining” the phenomenon of therapist-patient sex and when I was accused of being a “man hater,” even “crazy,” for daring to suggest that bias against women and other biases characterized most psychotherapeutic, psychiatric, and psycho-analytic practice.

It was Barbara who asked me to join her in co-founding the National Women’s Health Network (1974-1975) and due to her beneficent influence, that organization is still up and running. Alas, with her death, only three of the five co-founders remain alive.

Over the years, Barbara and I discussed and sometimes worked on many issues together: rape, health care, battered women, racism, divorce and custody battles, the various meanings of censorship, women’s health, including our reproductive and psychological health—but we also went to the opera, to movies, and to dinner together. She invited me to her conferences and parties and she came to mine.

Three months ago, Barbara attended my beloved son Ariel’s wedding. She was unusually quiet but managed to convey to me her pleasure at this profoundly happy event. (Barbara also chose some of Ariel’s writing for one of her anthologies; you can only imagine how pleased I was by her choice of authors).

Five years ago, Barbara quietly, privately came to my side when I was purged from a feminist listserv group to which we both belonged (I write about this in my book, The Death of Feminism). She told me that she did not want me to feel “cut off, isolated,” that she did not “understand why they kept attacking me.” These attacks pained her. “You are saying the most important things about women under Islam and you are telling the truth about anti-Semitism and Israel.”

In retrospect, I believe that Barbara recognized the high cost of telling the truth (or of telling an unpopular and threatening truth) since she, too had been shut out of many women’s magazines due to the ads that drug companies take in such venues.

She stood alone too—but she also felt nurtured by the huge women’s health movement that she helped to create. She would say: “Phyllis, don’t you think that the feminist health movement is the healthiest wing of feminism?” I would often agree.

Barbara/Babz/Baby: I will miss you every single day. Ordinarily, we would have been on the phone, talking about who had taken ill, and who had just died. But now it’s you, dear one, and I can no longer talk to you in the same way.

Although you were a proud Jew and supported the Jewish state, I know that you were not particularly religious. Thus, please forgive me if I offend you but surely, you deserve to be in Paradise (Gan Eden), as much as you deserve to be re-united with all the women whom we have both loved and lost to death in our own lifetimes.

I don’t think that you’re already organizing a protest movement in Heaven, as was once said right after Bella Abzug died. I think you are already gently advising and supporting others in Heaven; yes, that’s just the sort of thing you’d be doing.

May you rest in peace, may your soul be bound up with The Divine, and may your family and all those who loved you be comforted.

PLEASE NOTE: Barbara Seaman’s Memorial Service will take place on Thursday March 6th, 2008 at the Riverside Memorial Chapel. 180 West 76th St NYC at 5:30pm.

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Dr. Phyllis Chesler is the well known author of classic works, including the bestseller Women and Madness (1972) and The New Anti-Semitism (2003). She has just published The Death of Feminism: What’s Next in the Struggle for Women’s Freedom (Palgrave Macmillan), as well as an updated and revised edition of Women and Madness. She is an Emerita Professor of psychology and women’s studies, the co-founder of the Association for Women in Psychology (1969) and the National Women’s Health Network (1974). She is currently on the Board of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East and lives in New York City. Her website is www.phyllis-chesler.com.
We are delighted to have Dr. Chesler as a contributor to the Jesus is Lord, A Worshipping Christian’s Blog.

Original Link.

Booklet Issues Warning About ‘Christian Values’

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

Education ministers in the United Kingdom evaluating sex education programs have produced a new booklet for school children that warns Christian values should not be taught in schools, and sex education classes should teach only “how to,” not “whether to.”

Now it’s coming under criticism from those who say the material borders on propaganda and is completely inappropriate for schools to provide, according to a report in the Daily Mail.

One such comment came from Norman Wells, the chief of Family and Youth Concern. He told the newspaper the booklet is being used to manipulate impressionable youngsters.

“It’s verging on brainwashing,” he said. “The forum is committed to promoting the view that there are no rights and wrongs when it comes to sexual relationships.

“The authors of this … are clearly aiming to steer children away from a belief in moral absolutes and encouraging them to think everything is relative,” he said. “The only truly safe and healthy choice is to follow a clear moral code that keeps sexual intimacy within the context of a faithful and lifelong marriage.”

Providing such material to children, he said, is a “serious abdication of adult responsibility.”

The material includes a class exercise that is supposed to discover children’s views. It includes a series of moral statements about marriage, sex and homosexuality and children are supposed to respond with “agree,” “disagree” and “unsure.”

But while the students are supposed to respond with their own answers, the material includes the “correct” answers so that teachers can tell children they are wrong if they happen to choose a moral, traditional viewpoint.

“These answers should be read aloud to pupils after they have finished the exercise,” according to the report.

The statements, and their answers, include:

  • Homosexuality can be discussed as part of school lessons. AGREE.
  • You don’t have to be married to have a strong and supportive relationship. AGREE
  • Schools should only teach Christian values. DISAGREE.
  • Schools should tell young people not to have sex. DISAGREE.
  • Students’ answers will be fed back to be included in a national review of sex education, officials said.

    The documentation also suggests teachers talk to children about homosexuality.

    Original Link.

    Independent Expert: IDF Bullets Didn’t Kill Mohammed al-Dura

    Monday, March 3rd, 2008

    A report presented to a French court last week by an independent ballistics expert maintains that the death of Mohammed al-Dura, a Palestinian child seen being shot in the Gaza Strip during the first days of the intifada in September 2000, could not have been the result of Israeli gunfire, corroborating claims that the shocking footage was doctored.

    The ballistics expert, Jean-Claude Schlinger, presented his conclusions after reviewing the footage, which shows Dura and his father cowering by a wall after being caught in the crossfire between Palestinian gunmen and Israel Defense Forces soldiers at the Netzarim junction.

    The case revolves around a libel suit brought by the France 2 television channel and its Middle East correspondent, Charles Enderlin, against Phillipe Karsenty. On November 22, 2004 Karsenty wrote on his Web site, Media Ratings, that Dura’s death had been staged and that France 2’s conduct “disgraces France and its public broadcasting system.”

    A few weeks later France 2 and Enderlin sued him for libel. In October 2006 Karsenty was found guilty and was required to pay symbolic damages of 1 euro (and 3,000 euros in court costs).

    Karsenty appealed. The judge asked to examine all of the film footage in the report of the shooting before rendering a verdict.

    On Saturday, Enderlin rejected Schlinger’s findings, arguing that “only partial evidence was given to him for evaluation.”

    In his report, Schlinger wrote, “If Jamal [the boy’s father] and Mohammed al-Dura were indeed struck by shots, then they could not have come from the Israeli position, from a technical point of view, but only from the direction of the Palestinian position.”

    He also wrote, “In view of the general context, and in light of many instances of staged incidents, there is no objective evidence that the child was killed and his father injured. It is very possible, therefore, that it is a case [in which the incident was] staged.”

    Original Link.

    UC-Berkeley Sells Out to Saudi University

    Monday, March 3rd, 2008

    I found this article quite interesting. UC-Berkeley, one of the most liberal centers of “higher education”, has sold out to the Muslims. I’ll highlight a key point in the article below.

    The University of California at Berkeley is working on a partnership deal with Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

    Under the arrangement, which the Times says could be made final as early as Tuesday, Berkeley faculty members would collaborate on research and help the Saudi university hire professors.

    Some faculty members at Berkeley are upset about the pending deal, concerned that the $10-billion university will discriminate against women and others and limit academic freedom.

    Their worries are echoed by critics of another pending deal, between Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and Saudi Arabia, to start an engineering program at Jubail University College there. According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, Cal Poly would receive $5.9-million over five years to create an engineering curriculum, build laboratories, and train teachers, but only men would qualify to take or teach engineering classes at the school.

    At Berkeley, the Times reports, a committee of the Academic Senate voted in favor of the deal with King Abdullah University.

    Sexual discrimination at it’s finest. The Saudis are experts at it. I guess they want to share their skills in this area.

    Original Link.