Tuesday, September 26, 2006

What's happening in Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia

Headlines 26 September, Savannah Morning News, "8 hours. 5 shootings. 6 injured. 2 dead."

If you thought that cooler weather would bring an end to the spate of murders, robberies, and car-jackings, you are given a reality check by today's SMN headline. Once again, Megan Matteucci, intrepid crime reporter, regales us with more violence and mayhem,, including two homicides, one 18 year old, one 37 year old, both of Savannah.

Competing with this for attention is a sidebar article, "3rd ID soldiers ordered to Iraq." We saw it coming. So this is the third rotation.

"US relaxes ban on liquids in airline cabins," by Leslie Miller. What a relief. Does this mean mothers can bring sippy cups for their toddlers?

Far and near, the local scenes:

First off, our condolences to the family and friends of the reverend Dr. Kermit Petersen, pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Galesburg, Illinois, for four and thirty years. He served also on the United Way Board, FISH steering committee, and the Rotary Club. (Obituary printed in Register Mail of 16 Sept. 2006).

Now there are two big criminal trials going on in Western Illinois that got in the front page of the Register Mail on the 16th September: a jury found Derrick Williams, 39 years young, guilty of trying to murder an old man, John "Gary" Budd, 71 years of age, during a robbery at the old man's house. This in Warren County.
Then there's the murder of Patrick Thomas-Lynch. Antony Bell is on trial here, at the Ninth Circuit Court. The Honorable Judge Stephen Mathers presides here. The judge has granted a motion to continue. A detail of interest here is the case number, 06-CF-241.

On the cultural front, New Generation Dance Group performed at Cooke School Mexican Fiesta Friday the 15th September. The next day LULAC of Galesburg held a carnival at their centre at 1045 W. Second St, in the old Irish Quarter of Galesburg.

Good thing mother sent me this newspaper, because otherwise I don't know if and when I would have found out about the death of Italian journalist Oriana Fallaci, dead at 76. She had struggled against breast cancer, written about it too. People may remember her for her interviews of such famous individuals as the Ayatollah Ruholla Khomeini and Henry Kissinger. I did not find mention in the brief AP report about her journalism during the student and labor protests of Mexico 1968, and the subsequent massacre by security and military forces.1

Of interest is this paragraph:

"Virtually all of the literary energy and passion of her final years were consumed in vehement attacks on a Muslim world she judged to be the enemy of Western civilization.
"After a decade-long absence from the publishing scene, Fallaci burst into the spotlight after the September 11 attacks with a series of blistering essays in which she argued that Muslems were carrying out a crusade against the Christian West."

Why is it that this is the first time I read about this? I didn't read about it in Harper's, nor did I hear about it on NPR. Maybe I should subscribe to Time or The New Republic, or Atlantic.

Two last items of local interest for Galesburgers: Cleanup Days are 25-29 September, that's going on now. Household hazardous waste will be picked up 28 October in Monmouth Park, north on 11th street off US 34. Call (309)345-3638 to the Community Development Council offices for further information.

1. The Register Mail, p A11, 16 September 2006.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

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Never stop learning.

Athichoodi.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Second day of September 2006

The writer has gotten out of the house promptly at ten, as agreed with the wife today. They worked diligently at transferring the row of logs and wood to the back, lined up along the fence on the north side of the lot. The wire fence is overgrown with honeysuckle, which the writer has reminded himself has to come down, specially that which has begun to twine and twist about the slender branches of the live oak.

As the writer blogs, his almost four year old son has climbed onto the office chair, and is sitting, back to his papa's back, legs dangling over the seat, quietly eating a banana. He seems content; a few smacking sounds faintly make themselves heard.

The writer sees his wife come in with his daughter, hears her tell the daughter they have to wash hands first (before eating, presumably), and turns his head back toward the monitor. The two small plastic containers, one palm-sized one of omeprazole, the other smaller and of a translucent orange, scarcely filled with fluoxetine capsules, remind him to take the medication now.

Friday, September 01, 2006

The dream for peace in Africa: Uganda's civil war

I signed a petition asking for cessation of violence in Uganda. I had thought I read something about a treaty signifying the end of the civil war. Isn't this happening?

Robin E. sends me this in an email:

Emergency relief organizations say that living conditions in Northern Uganda are the harshest they've ever seen. Consider the following:
30,000 children have been abducted as sexual slaves, porters, or fighters over the past 20 years.
More than 1.5 million people are crammed into 200 crowded camps.
There is an estimated weekly death toll of 900 civilians due to disease.
20 people die each day due to violence.
Sexual abuse is a daily occurrence in camps.
For over 20 years the rebel group Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) has waged a brutal war against the Government of Uganda. The ruthless fighters in this conflict have resorted to barbaric tactics of murder, mutilation, burning of villages, sexual enslavement, and abduction of civilians – especially children – to be forced to fight.

What can we do? We must tell our elected officials to work for a conflict resolution at the peace talks in Juba, Southern Sudan and to increase humanitarian aid to this war-torn area! Please take action by going to: http://go.care2.com/e/Ma0/qL/QczY

Now my attention is distracted by news of bomb attacks in Baghdad. Iraq's Ministry of Health is releasing figures which show the number of violent deaths diminished in August.