Society's ChildS

Heart - Black

Utah doc and mistress texted one another the day his wife died: Prosecutors

© Rick Bowmer/AP PhotoGypsy Willis, the 37-year-old mistress of Martin MacNeill, arrives at court, Oct. 25, 2013, in Provo, Utah, to take a much-anticipated turn on the witness stand.
The mistress of a Utah doctor accused of killing his wife testified today that their affair was "casual," despite the fact that prosecutors allege she and the doctor exchanged 15 text messages on the day his wife was found lifeless in a bathtub.

Gypsy Willis said she met Dr. Martin MacNeill, a married father of eight children, online around November 2005, however their relationship did not turn sexual until January 2006, she said.

"We would see each other about a couple times a month. There were months when we didn't see each other. It was a very casual thing," said Willis, who wore a tight blazer over a low-cut camisole while on the stand in the Provo, Utah, courtroom.

Willis testified that MacNeill, 57, helped her financially during nursing school around February 2007.

Prosecutors allege MacNeill drugged and drowned his wife, Michele MacNeill, 50, on April 11, 2007, so he could pursue a relationship with Willis.

Bad Guys

New York City DJ Dave Herman arrested for arranging drunken tryst with 7-year-old

© YouTube/Creative Commons
Dave Herman, the legendary New York morning radio host, was charged on Thursday with trying to lure a 7-year-old girl to the U.S. Virgin Islands for sex.

He was arrested at the St. Croix airport, where he was expecting to meet the girl and her mother after their flight from New York and take them to his vacation home.

The longtime host of "The Dave Herman Rock and Roll Morning Show" on WNEW-FM who had once interviewed John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, and considered George Harrison a personal friend, is charged with having chatted online with a woman, "Kris," he believed to be the mother of a 6-year-old named "Lexi." "Kris" was actually a Homeland Security officer.

Bad Guys

Hermain Cain, Republican candidate for president, claims sex harassment charges were sent from the Devil

© Unknown
Erstwhile Republican candidate for president Herman Cain claims that allegations of sexual harassment that torpedoed his campaign in 2012 were the work of Satan, who wanted to block Cain from the White House. Cain made the statements in an interview with RealClearReligion published on Wednesday.

The former Godfather's Pizza CEO and ex-head of the National Restaurant Association told RealClearReligion that running a political campaign is like "drinking from a fire hose." Taking the time to rebut the accusations by four women who accused Cain of sexual harassment, he said, "would have been a huge distraction."

Besides, a greater force was trying to keep him from the Oval Office, he said.


California cops shoot and kill 13-year-old carrying toy rifle

© well photo/
Then they handcuffed him before seeking medical attention.

Officers in Sonoma County, Calif., shot dead 13-year-old Andy Lopez Tuesday as he walked home from school carrying a toy rifle.

Just days after a 12-year-old boy in Nevada shot dead his math teacher and himself with an all-too-real handgun, the Sonoma incident reflects not only a troubling epidemic of trigger-happy policing, but a context wherein a young boy carrying a toy rifle is assumed to be carrying a real weapon. Rania Khalek, who highlighted the incident on her blog, questioned "whether or not race played a factor in the decision to shoot."

Arrow Up

Indian women take aim at prejudice with 'Dark Is Beautiful' ad campaign

Nandita Das
© Agence France-PresseNandita Das.
Looking to find a husband, make friends, and get ahead at work? Then you need to have lighter skin. That's the all-pervasive message in India, and it's something that one actress is fighting to overturn.

The new poster girl of the "Dark is Beautiful" campaign, Nandita Das, has called out India's obsession with fair skin - a prejudice she says has driven some young women to the brink of suicide.

"Magazines, TV, cinema - everywhere being fair is synonymous with being beautiful," Das told AFP.

Described as having "dusky" skin as opposed to a fair complexion, the 43-year-old is well used to Indian preoccupations with color, and not just in the film industry, where she has refused requests to lighten her skin for roles.

"How can you be so confident despite being so dark?" is a question regularly asked of Das, who has preferred to star in unconventional, issue-based films but says she would struggle to get ahead in mainstream Bollywood movies.

In May, Das became the face of the Dark is Beautiful campaign, launched in 2009 by activist group Women of Worth to celebrate "beauty beyond color".

Her backing has helped to generate increasing debate in the media, but the response has underlined just how ingrained the preference is for fairer skin, which has long been associated with higher social classes and castes.


Greece's mystery girl's mother found: DNA tests confirm Bulgarian Roma woman is blond child's biological parent

Mystery girl
© AP/Greek Police
Sofia, Bulgaria -- DNA tests have confirmed that a 35-year-old Bulgarian Roma woman is the mother of a mysterious girl in Greece known as Maria, authorities said Friday.

Genetic profile of Sasha Ruseva matched that of the girl, said Svetlozar Lazarov, an Interior Ministry official.

Ruseva has said she gave birth to a baby girl four years ago in Greece while working as an olive picker, and gave the child away because she was too poor to care for her.

Maria has been placed in temporary care since last week after authorities raided a Roma settlement in central Greece and later discovered that girl was not the child of the couple she was living were not her parents.

Costas Yannopoulos, director of the Greek children's charity "Smile of the Child" which has been looking after the girl said he had no comment on her fate.

Arrow Down

Hundreds of thousands lose insurance due to 'Affordable' Care Act

Affordable Care Act
© AFP Photo / Joe RaedleAffordable Care Act navigator Nini Hadwen speaks with clients as they shop for health insurance.
The ongoing issues with President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act don't end with the insurance mandate's awful website: new reports suggest Obamacare is driving the cost of coverage up for some, and eliminating it entirely for others.

Almost one month after launch, the websites for the president's hallmark health care plan continue to be riddled with issues that have opened up entirely new opportunities for opponents of so-called "Obamacare" to pounce upon. Perhaps more damaging to the reputation of the administration, however, are preliminary reports suggesting that the insurance program is failing to meet the promises made by the president.

Specifically, investigative journalists say the Affordable Care Act is already causing long-time policy holders to be kicked off of their insurance plans, and in some areas others only the have the option of one or two providers - and not at a pretty price.

Anna Gorman and Julie Appleby write for Kaiser Health News that hundreds of thousands of United States citizens who had purchased policies already are having their plans cancelled by health insurance companies because the Affordable Care Act mandates that providers offer customers specific policies that some groups currently don't offer.

Che Guevara

Best of the Web: Actor Russell Brand reduces BBC newsman to stunned silence with scathing critique of the global corporate oligarchy

Actor and comedian Russell Brand is calling for a political and philosophical revolution in his guest editorship of the New Statesman magazine, and he explained what he wants to see in a passionately argued interview on BBC's "Newsnight."

Combative host Jeremy Paxman asked the British actor, who's known for his past drug use and his brief marriage to pop singer Katy Perry, what gave him the right to promote his political beliefs, particularly since he's never voted.

"I don't get my authority from this preexisting paradigm, which is quite narrow and only serves a few people," Brand said. "I look elsewhere for alternatives that might be of service to humanity."

He continued, issuing reams of prose even as the veteran TV reporter challenged him to defend his arguments.

"I am not not voting out of apathy," Brand said. "I am not voting out of absolute indifference and weariness and exhaustion from the lies, treachery and deceit of the political class that has been going on for generations."

Star of David

After handshake, Jewish squatter child stones six-year-old Palestinian

The children of Israel's land-thieving squatters learn hatred at an early age, as this report by Mairav Zonszein, published by +972 Magazine shows.

In the above video (watch from about 1 minute, 30 seconds), filmed by Amir Bitan, an Israeli Ta'ayush activist,
Thamer Ibrahim Alayan, a six-year-old Palestinian child from the Umm-al-Ara'is village in the South Hebron Hills, is seen going up to shake the hand of a settler child from the illegal outpost of Mitzpeh Yair. Thamer is first seen being escorted away from the settlement by a Border Policeman, presumably to prevent a confrontation between the two. However, Thamer returns to the settler and, after the two shake hands in an almost moving moment, the settler child picks up a rock and throws it at Thamer.
One doesn't have to try too hard to imagine what this settler child - and tens of thousands of others like him - will grow up like.

Eye 2

Massachusetts student charged after teacher's body found in woods

A well-liked teacher was found slain in woods behind this quiet Massachusetts town's high school, and a 14-year-old boy who was found walking along a state highway overnight was charged with killing her.

Blood found in a second-floor school bathroom helped lead investigators to the body of Colleen Ritzer, a 24-year-old math teacher at Danvers High School who was reported missing when she didn't come home from work on Tuesday, Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said.

"She was a very, very respected, loved teacher," Blodgett said.

The suspect, Philip Chism, was arraigned on a murder charge Wednesday and ordered held without bail. The teenager, described by classmates as soft-spoken and pleasant, also did not come home from school the day before and was spotted walking along Route 1 in the neighboring town of Topsfield at about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Officials didn't release a cause of death and haven't discussed a motive in the killing.