September 23, 2003

Another Assignment

Don't run from my blog...another of my "good" entries will be coming soon, for now just read the one below. This is another Jerz assignment.

Sit tight. I'll be back with something cool about my mundane student existence soon.

Assignment: 8-9 p. 162
1.)U.S. officials say airman who worked at Guantanamo was spying for Syria

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. military officials have charged an air force translator at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp for terror suspects with espionage and aiding the enemy for allgedly trying to send information about detainees to Syria.- CNEWS World
Who: Air Force translator
What:charged with espionage & aiding the enemy...trying to send info. to Syria
Where: Guantanamo Bay prison camp for terror suspects
Why: aiding the enemy
How: send information to Syria
2.)Police: Wash. Teen With Gun Wanted to Die
Associated Press

SPOKANE, Wash. - A troubled teenager who was critically wounded by officers after he fired a gun at school was trying to commit suicide, police said Tuesday.

Who: troubled teenager
What:critically wounded
Where: Spokane, Washington
Why: commit suicide
How: fired a gun at school
3.) Storms Add to Misery in Hurricane-Ravaged Parts of US
VOA News
23 Sep 2003, 17:25 UTC

Five days after Hurricane Isabel ripped through the U.S. East Coast causing widespread flooding and power outages, torrential rain hit Virginia and Maryland overnight, adding to the region's many problems.

Who: U.S. East Coast
What: widespread flooding and power outages
When: overnight
Where: U.S. East Coast
Why: compounded by Hurricane Isabel's effects
How: ?
4.) 4 Are Charged in Stampede at Nightclub in Chicago

CHICAGO, Sept. 23 The owners and two others associated with a nightclub where 21 people died in a stampede in February have been charged with involuntary manslaughter and could face up to 10 years in prison, a prosecutor said

Who: owners and two others
What: charged with involuntary manslaughter in stampede deaths
When: Sept 23, and February
Where: Chicago, Illinois
Why: involuntary manslaughter
How: could get 10 year prison sentence
5.)Death at 18 Spurs Debate Over a Pill for Abortion

Last Wednesday, a California teenager died at a hospital in Pleasanton, just days after taking prescription pills to abort her early pregnancy. The circumstances surrounding her death are unclear, and an autopsy is under

Who: teenager
What:died at a hospital
When: Last Wednesday
Where: California
Why: supposed negative effects of prescription pills to abort pregnancy
How: circumstances of death are unclear, autopsy under way
Bitter divorce blamed for sniper shootings
From Mike Ahlers
Tuesday, September 23, 2003 Posted: 11:47 PM EDT (0347 GMT)

MANASSAS, Virginia (CNN) -- Prosecutors blamed John Allen Muhammad's anger at his ex-wife Tuesday for spurring nearly a yearlong rage of violence that ended with a series of sniper shootings in the Washington area last fall.
Who: John Allen Muhammad
What: sniper shooting violence
When: last fall, Tuesday
Where: Manassas, Virginia
Why: rage against his ex-wife
How: begin series of sniper shootings
Article 1.)Death at 18 Spurs Debate Over a Pill for Abortion
Last Wednesday, a California teenager died at a hospital in Pleasanton, just days after taking prescription pills to abort her early pregnancy. The circumstances surrounding her death are unclear, and an autopsy is under way.
But battle lines are already being drawn, with opponents of abortion saying the death of the woman, Holly Patterson, 18, shows why the abortion pills are too dangerous to remain on the market, while abortion providers say it shows no such thing.
"We're sorry to say that this is what we warned would happen," said Wendy Wright, senior policy director at Concerned Women of America, which opposes abortions. "This drug needs to be taken off the market."
Ron Fitzsimmons, executive director of the National Coalition of Abortion Providers, said that it was not clear why Ms. Patterson died, but that Ms. Wright's reaction was no surprise. "We expect the antis to jump all over it," he said.
The pill, mifepristone, formerly known as RU-486, has long had a symbolic significance transcending its medical use. When it was approved by the Food and Drug Administration three years ago, advocacy groups insisted that it would change the nature of abortions, taking them out of clinics, where women might face harassment by abortion opponents, and into the privacy of a doctor's office. Abortion opponents said it was dangerous and would lead to suffering and deaths.
So far, neither has been right. Eighty-eight percent of all abortions are in clinics, said Pamela Long, a spokeswoman for Danco Laboratories of New York, mifepristone's distributor. While more and more women are having nonsurgical abortions, known as medical abortions, not all clinics offer them and just 18 percent of eligible women choose them, said Vicki Saporta, president of the National Abortion Federation.
On the other hand, said Dr. Richard Hausknecht, Danco's medical director, "the drug has turned out to be quite safe, quite effective." Some 160,000 to 165,000 American women used it from Sept. 28, 2000, when it was approved, through last March.
One woman in Canada died of an infection during the drug's clinical trials and an American woman who had an undetected tubal pregnancy died after she took the drug. There were 264 adverse reactions, including infections, bleeding, allergic reactions and tubal pregnancies.
But it is unclear what happened to Holly Patterson. Did she have enough medical supervision while taking the pills? When did she seek medical attention? Did she wait until it was too late? Did she tell the doctors in the emergency room that she had taken mifepristone? Why, in fact, did she die?
Ms. Patterson received mifepristone on Sept. 10 from Planned Parenthood Golden Gate, a clinic near her home in Livermore, a San Francisco suburb. Erin Brooks, a clinic spokeswoman, said she could not reveal any details because of rules on patient confidentiality.
The procedure for a medical abortion is for a woman to take mifepristone, which ends her pregnancy. Two days later, she takes another drug, misoprostol, which elicits uterine contractions that result in a miscarriage. The Food and Drug Administration requires that women be counseled about the procedure, sign informed consent forms and be provided with telephone numbers of medical personnel in the event of complications.
"I can tell you that every woman who comes into a Planned Parenthood affiliate for a medical abortion is counseled extensively about the procedure," said Dr. Vanessa Cullins, a Planned Parenthood official.
Some accounts say Ms. Patterson had severe pain and bleeding on Sept. 14, went to a hospital and was sent home with painkillers. She was back on Sept. 16, dying the next day.
"She didn't have someone to care for her who recognized the danger she was in," said Dr. Donna Harrison, an obstetrician-gynecologist in Berrien Springs, Mich. Dr. Harrison is author of a petition by the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists asking that the drug be pulled from the market.
"That is the crux of our complaint," Dr. Harrison said. "Mifeprex," she said, referring to the drug's brand name, "has effectiveness. It does work." But, she continued, "this is a dangerous drug that is essentially unregulated, which makes it more dangerous."
Dr. Hausknecht heard a different account from the Planned Parenthood clinic. "There were many phone calls from the time she came into the clinic until that Sunday, when she turned up in the emergency room," he said. "She had a great deal of pain and wanted refills of her prescription."
The Planned Parenthood clinic, he said, tried to reach her last Monday and Tuesday but to no avail.
"At least some of the medical people did the right thing," Dr. Hausknecht said. "Before we jump to conclusions, we ought to have facts."

Article 2.)Abortion Pill Culprit In Death?

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 23, 2003

(CBS/AP) An 18-year-old who had concealed her pregnancy died of complications after she took RU-486, one week after she began taking the abortion pill.

Holly Patterson, who lived in the San Francisco suburb of Livermore, visited a Planned Parenthood clinic Sept. 10 to take the pill. She followed the prescribed procedure for using RU-486, taking two more pills at home in the following days.

After experiencing bleeding and cramps so severe that she was unable to walk, her boyfriend rushed her to the hospital, where she was given painkillers and sent home. She was back in the hospital a few days later and died on Sept. 17.

An autopsy has been scheduled to determine the cause of death. But her father, Monty Patterson, said he learned from an attending physician at the hospital that she had died after a massive infection caused by fragments of the fetus left inside her uterus caused her to go into septic shock. He said he had no idea that his daughter was pregnant or that she was taking abortion drugs.

"Holly was very much in trouble, and the doctor had mentioned that she had taken an abortion pill which shocked me and surprised me at the time, because I had no idea that that's what her problem was," Patterson told CBS News' The Early Show co-anchor Rene Syler on Monday.

Planned Parenthood also said it is investigating Patterson's death.

A spokeswoman for Danco Laboratories, which makes RU-486, estimated that 200,000 women in the United States and more than 1 million worldwide have used the pill since it was invented in France in the 1980s.

Two women who took it in the United States have died, although the FDA says it is unclear if their deaths were directly related to the pill's use.

Patients who take RU-486 take the first pill under the care of a physician. A second medication called misoprostol, taken three days later, induces labor so the embryo can be expelled. In 5 to 8 percent of cases, surgery is required to stop the patient's bleeding.

Planned Parenthood's web site compares the process to having a miscarriage.

Eric Schaff, chair of the National Abortion Federation, which promotes non-surgical abortion rights, said aspirin causes more deaths than RU-486.

But anti-abortion rights groups such as the National Right to Life Committee insist that the pills "offer a whole new set of significant risks," and makes abortion seem too simple. A report on the group's Web site says the pill gives "supporters of abortion a chance to change the image of abortion, making it seem as simple as taking a pill."

According to national mortality tables, 37 women died in 2000 from pregnancies with abortive outcomes. A total of 404 women died in pregancies overall. In 1999, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded 861,789 abortions.

Analysis: Both pieces reflect strong journalistic qualities: great quote selection, summary of events, interesting stats; however, the CBS/AP article offers less biased information, as shown in the article.

In the nytimes article, the author focuses more on the right-wing ideology: "That is the crux of our complaint," Dr. Harrison said. "Mifeprex," she said, referring to the drug's brand name, "has effectiveness. It does work." But, she continued, "this is a dangerous drug that is essentially unregulated, which makes it more dangerous." The author betrays objectivity by adding this professional and biased comment of a doctor; in this the reader learns of the's sentiments toward the abortion issue. Though balanced, this quote gives it all away.

On the other hand, the CBS/AP article begins with an acute objectivity that flows throughout the article, only in the last sentence does some subjective views interfere; the stats, for instance, "recorded 861,789 abortions", echoes the last word on the issue. Overall, though this article displays the one characteristic I most admire in journalistic writing: objectivity, descriptions, such as, "concealed her pregnancy and died of complications", allows the reader to decide where one stands without the interference of a monopolistic newspaper's bias.

Posted by Amanda Cochran at September 23, 2003 11:56 PM

Amanda how would I know I am old?

Posted by: grammy at September 28, 2003 7:18 PM
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