Jonelle Ellis hasn’t done much public speaking. She's never been involved in politics. But for the last six months or so, she's helped create a bill and convinced legislators in Santa Fe to carry it.
Eight years ago this month, Bill Richardson launched what will go down as the most exhilarating roller-coaster ride of an administration in this pokey state’s century-long history.
Mayor Richard Berry says homelessness is one of the most difficult challenges he's come across during his time in City Hall. "There are issues you look at as a mayor and you can say, OK. Here's a problem. Here's a linear solution." But homelessness, with its many dimensions and causes, is another story.
Dateline: Malaysia—A husband in Kuala Lumpur abandoned his wife of many years after a temple priest convinced him she was a demon. The woman, who gave her name as Loh, was quoted in The Star newspaper as saying, “The medium told my husband I had been casting spells on him for the past 15 years and that I was a demon trying to kill him.” Loh said her husband, a factory manager, “refused to eat or drink at home because he thought I poisoned the food.” The husband is seeking a divorce and refuses to meet with his two teenage sons for fear that his wife will use them to kill him. According to The Star, Malaysians often seek personal and professional advice from faith healers, temple mediums and witch doctors. Increasing complaints about sexual and financial abuse, however, have prompted Malaysia’s government to consider a bill that would require mystics to register with the Ministry of Health. Loh told reporters that the priest who advised her husband was in debt and likely taking advantage of her husband, who withdrew all of their children’s savings before deserting the family.
On Saturday, 22-year-old Jared Lee Loughner shot 19 people and killed six, perhaps seven if Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ critical condition worsens. Even in the face of such despicable recent comments as Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele’s suggestion that his constituents place former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi in “the firing line,” it is not yet clear whether a conscious toning-down of expressly violent political rhetoric in the face of such despicable comments could have prevented Saturday’s shooting. Just as we may never know if the ridiculous map Sarah Palin distributed last year—which placed crosshairs over the regions where Democratic officials were up for re-election (including Giffords’)—helped incite Loughner to act on his desire to kill his congresswoman. But that’s not the point. There’s no use in waiting to decide whether a new, more considerate approach to campaigning would prevent future attacks on government officials—instead, both Steele and Howard Dean, chairman of the Democratic Party, should denounce violence-laden campaign language immediately on the basis that it is unnecessary, unethical and un-American, period.