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Today I have posted a video blog. I get asked all the time, "What do you do during commercial breaks?" Usually I answer e-mails unless I have company — guests on the set. Last night I picked up my laptop and shot with the laptop's camera a video blog of our time during commercial breaks.
We had the "Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase on our show last night. I have never been a wrestling fan and, until Chris Benoit died, knew nothing about wrestling. I have been studying wrestling and the WWE for the show for the past week and I am fascinated by the storyline, the creation of the WWE, etc. What I like most about my job is that I am constantly learning new things that I might not otherwise learn.
Last night we also did a segment about a missing student (Kelly Nolan) in Madison, Wisconsin. She was last seen on State Street in Madison late June 22. I was stunned when the Madison newspaper reporter told me on air that State Street has been the site of a recent shooting. When I was in college there, it was extremely safe: Women could walk the street at all hours and there were lots of people on the street. State Street is the main drag in the town and where all the students go at all hours. The University of Wisconsin is hard to get into now (not when I applied) and when the reporter said there had been a shooting there my instant thought: It just got easier to get into Wisconsin. Every parent of a Wisconsin Badger who just heard the reporter is going to pull his kid out of the school. I still think Wisconsin is safe.
OK, I bit: I bought an iPhone and so far, I like it. I would like it better if I could assign a different ring tone song to different callers (so that I can tell who is calling faster than having to look at it — maybe you can, but I just have not figured that out) and if I could use Verizon phone service (it seems to work better in the area I live and most of all because Verizon works in my house all the time and AT&T seems to be spotty.) Of course, I do travel overseas so it is better to have AT&T if you travel overseas — so I guess nothing is perfect.
I went to law school believing our judicial system was/is fair and more than anything I wanted it to be just that: fair. Over the years that belief has been challenged despite the effort of many to make it fair. My belief in the fairness of the system has been challenged by what I have seen and experienced. I have seen rogue defense attorneys, rogue prosecutors and yes, even rogue judges. Verdicts, while legally correct, have been morally wrong (e.g. a person who is guilty is found not guilty because there is not proof beyond a reasonable doubt.) Innocent people have been found guilty and even rotted on Death Row only to be found innocent later by DNA (I wonder how many were wrongfully executed.) I don't know how to fix the system and don't think it realistic to think we can. I know we do our best, but in my mind I am forever trying to reconcile different fact patterns with each other in search for the explanation. I reconcile the different situations in hope that I can find fairness.
Here is a challenge for you today: How do you reconcile the sentences of Paris Hilton, Martha Stewart and "Scooter" Libby with each other?
As you recall, Paris Hilton was sentenced to 40 days — she served 23 — for a misdemeanor/violating probation (not a felony). Martha Stewart went to prison for a felony (she was investigated for insider trading — never charged with an insider trading offense, but lying in the investigation) and troubling, her conviction was upheld on appeal even though the government indicted one of their own witnesses — an agent — for perjury having committed perjury in her trial. "Scooter" Libby, a lawyer, was investigated for being the leak in the Valerie Plame case, but never charged with leaking. He was convicted of more than one felony — lying in the investigation — and now his prison sentence has been commuted.
How do you reconcile these three cases with each other? Do you first look at the seriousness of their crimes and figure the most serious should get the most time? Do you hold the one with the law degree to be the most accountable for violating the law? Neither Martha Stewart nor "Scooter" Libby were charged with the crime that authorities were originally investigating. Both were charged with lying. How do you explain these three cases with very different results? E-mail your thoughts to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
As an aside — a few points — I don't know about you, but I hate to see people self destruct and I hate to see people go to jail or prison, but I admit that sometimes it must happen.
Now for some e-mails. Yesterday, I posted an article about a sex offender and asked you for your view. So check out the views and I posted each in the order in which I read it:
E-mail No. 1
I do agree very strongly that to form an opinion regarding this past sexual offense, we would need more facts. Not knowing for sure about how the age of 18 years was interpreted poses a problem for me. If Isenhour was truly under the impression that this girl was 18, then his age of 21 does not seem to insinuate any sexual offense. We don't know any facts pertaining to the 15 year old though such as her reactions or motives either, so it is difficult to say he was guilty of this crime... however, having said that, the statement that he made, Isenhour says it's "absolutely pathetic that people don't have anything better to do with their time." This statement troubles me. I would think that a man in his position would be at least sympathetic towards the concerns that people have regarding this very important issue and have an understanding of why they might be concerned. His statement really does bother me, so much that my opinion of this totally shifts and I don't think I need any more facts! These people's concerns are not "pathetic". I would not vote for him based solely on his insensitivity towards this issue, not because of his former charges.
E-mail No. 2
I have mixed feelings about these kind of cases. I also would like to know what the girl looked like. Some 15 year old girls look years older than they are. My daughter looked 18 when she was only 11! I think if I were a young man considering a physical relationship with a young lady, I would card her! Love your show.
E-mail No. 3
Regardless of the age of the victim, he was arrested and charged with a sex crime he committed and he also ignored his responsibility to register with local authorities when he takes up residence in any community. So in my opinion he could care less about his actions. He's a threat to children!
As for the lack of English at the check in for NIH, I will contact my congressman and after what happened in Scotland and England the USA had better beef up the requirements big time. English is a given. The next president will be elected for his or her stand on security, followed by border security, followed by health care.
E-mail No. 4
The only issue that would matter to me is if he had any reason to believe the girl was underage. Seeing as the offense happened in 1992 as long as his slate has been clean since, I would have to give him the benefit of the doubt. 21 year olds are not likely to card prospective partners unless they really looked underage.
E-mail No. 5
It's difficult to know from the article, whether Councilman Patrick Isenhour knew or suspected that the girl was younger than 18 years of age. Some 15-year-old girls can appear to be 18+ years old and such situations do not usually lend themselves to checking birth age where there is mutual consent and the appearance of legal age. Perhaps there should be a charge other than "sex offender" in situations where it is perfectly clear that the sexual act was done with the honest belief that the underage child was 18 years of age. I suspect that there is a great deal of sexual activity that goes on via mutual consent that never comes to the attention of parents or the authorities among girls and boys in these age ranges. Since there is not enough information on this case, I can't know if his running for office is appropriate or not. I would recommend, however, that he provide a better response to those who are skeptical about his character than: "absolutely pathetic that people don't have anything better to do with their time."
San Diego, CA
E-mail No. 6
I can forgive a mistake of youth if he learned from it. I can't accept his thinking it has no bearing on his life today. He apparently wants to be judge and jury and not open about his past. Like many in politics, it seems he believes he's above the law and can make rules for himself. His calling pathetic those concerned about his past depicts an unacceptable attitude for a public servant.
Cuyahoga Falls, OH
E-mail No. 7
I read the article about this councilman who is a registered sex offender and to tell you the truth, if he served his time and continues to stay clean, then he has a right to run for re-election. In other words, he is still a registered sex offender and it will be on his record for life and if he tries to commit the same thing over again, whelp, it will be on his record. So he should still have a right to run for re-election unless the voters don't want him in office and that is totally up to the registered voters. I don't live in Kansas so I don't know how their laws work. Anyways, just thought I send you my response.
E-mail No. 8
Clearly this should have been aired before the election. It is not the candidate's option to determine what is relevant when it comes to getting my vote. I can't say how it would have affected my vote, had the facts been make known at the time of the election. Depends on the actual facts of the case. He definitely would not get my vote now because he failed to mention or concealed the situation, and deemed it irrelevant. His state concerning people having nothing better to do with their time is arrogant. His comment alone is enough for me to pursue a movement to recall him.
E-mail No. 9
My question is, why is this 1992 sexual offense by an Alderman just now coming to light? He has implied that since it happened so long ago it shouldn't matter. He was registered a sex offender, but didn't give a forwarding address when he moved. This reveals a dishonest element of his psyche. He should not serve in any Governmental capacity, in my opinion.
Have a great week, and Happy 4th!
E-mail No. 10
Greta, I read where they are charging Dr. Astin with improperly prescribing painkillers to pro wrestler Chris Benoit. It seemed like the authorities moved quickly on this. My question is what about the doctor who prescribed Anna Nicole such large amounts of narcotics? The public hasn't heard what is happing with that investigation. I feel she should face the same charges as Dr. Astin if not an accomplice to murder. Can you give us any update on Anna' doctor and the problems she might be facing? (If any)
E-mail No. 11
I am a 26-year-old female pro wrestler from Connecticut. I met and talked with Chris Benoit a few times in the past. From what I gathered from him, what he is being accused of is totally out of his character. I know people are different behind closed doors, but this just floored me.
I was wondering why it hasn't been ruled out that someone else, perhaps and enemy was in his house and committed these murders, only to flee and make it look like Chris Benoit himself did all of this??
Please tell me your thoughts on this. I would love to talk more with you about this.
E-mail No. 12
I watched the press conference from the attorney general who indicted Benoit's physician. 1 million doses? Multiple controlled substances? Those comments were thrown out to the public with no context. As a pharmacist, all I saw was a sensational news conference. I was wondering if the AG knew what happened to Mike Nifong?
Eric Laslo PharmD, RPh
E-mail No. 13
I did the math. 1 Million Rx's in 2 years, is 500,000 per year, so divided by 365 = 1,369. Divided by 40 patients = 34 prescriptions per patient.
That isn't subtracting weekends, vacations, holiday and golf days, if you subtract those days it would probably be more like 60 to 65 prescriptions per patient.
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