Category Archives: National



Ohio shoots down conservative  “heartbeat bill”

On Nov. 27, House Bill 125, otherwise known as Ohio’s “heartbeat bill,” was dropped after a decision was made by Republican Senate President Tom Niehaus to keep the bill from going to a vote on the floor of the Ohio State Senate.

The bill proposed to ban abortions after the fetus has its first heartbeat, which typically occurs around six to eight weeks into pregnancy. Had the bill passed, it would have made Ohio’s abortion laws the most conservative in the country. According to Democratic Senator Nina Turner, the “heartbeat bill” would have “essentially made abortions illegal in the state of Ohio.”





Suspected serial killer commits suicide in custody

Israel Keyes, a man arrested and charged in the murder of an Alaskan barista, killed himself while in custody. Authorities say that Keyes had also confessed to at least seven other killings, not knowing his victims but looking for them in abandoned and secluded places. Keyes’ killings stretched across the country, including two in Vermont, four in Washington state and one somewhere on the East Coast. He was finally charged with the killing of Samantha Koenig, and had he been convicted, he could have faced the death penalty.



Clashes outside Egypt presidential palace in Cairo

Protesters clashed with police outside of President Mohammed Morsi’s house over a rushed drafting of a new constitution and Morsi’s recent extension of his powers. Many of the protestors chanted phrases similar to those directed against former president Hosni Mubarak during the February 2011 uprising. Tear gas was fired by police after the protesters managed to breach a barbed wire fence surrounding the palace, but the police retreated, allowing the protestors to get closer to the walls. Eighteen people were injured, though none seriously, in the brief bout of violence. Sizeable crowds of protestors have also turned out in Alexandria.





2012 Hottest Year on Record for the United States

The past eight months of this year have been the warmest recorded of any in the US. Since record-keeping began in 1895, this year rated as the third-hottest summer, according to the U.S. National Climate Data Center’s report Monday.

While the average temperature in August was 74.4 degrees Fahrenheit, which is only the 16th hottest on record, the nation is averaging four degrees Fahrenheit above average for the year.

Ohio has the greatest record high to record low ratio, with 49 record high temperatures to every record low. These record high temperatures have also been accompanied by severe drought.




132 Inmates escape from Mexican prison on the border

Mexican authorities reported that 132 inmates escaped from a jail in northern Mexico. The escape has spurred a search near the border by federal police and soldiers. The prisoners fled one by one from a social rehabilitation center. The facility is minimum-security and the inmates were able to escape through a seven-foot-long tunnel. 86 of the inmates were federal prisoners and 46 were in jail on local charges.

In December of 2010, 153 prisoners escaped from a nearby prison located in Nuevo Laredo, TX. In this case, 41 guards were charged with aiding the inmates in the escape. Gangs often try to break members out of prison.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection have taken action, placing officers and agents on alert in the area, according to an official of Homeland Security.




Third Ohioan dies from West Nile virus complications

Tuesday morning an 80-year-old man in southwest Ohio died from complications of the West Nile virus. This is the third statewide death resulting from West Nile this year. Earlier in 2012, a 76-year-old man in Hamilton County and a 87-year-old man in Cuyahoga County also died from complications of the West Nile virus. 79 human cases of the virus have been reported this year in the state. Officials are calling this summer one of the worst for the West Nile infection in the state and across the nation. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, a total of 2,636 cases have been reported in the nation this year, with 118 deaths.




Obama emphasizes fair trade during stop at Columbus

During his two campaign stops in Ohio on Monday, President Barack Obama discussed efforts to combat unfair trade policies in China that hurt U.S. manufacturers. These policies specifically harm automakers and suppliers, including the 54,200 Ohioans who work directly with the automotive industry. Obama spoke to thousands in Cincinnati and Columbus explaining that his administration has taken steps toward enforcing the World Trade Organization’s ruling. The organization alleged that illegal subsidies were placed on automobiles and parts. Obama pointed out that this is the second action aimed at protecting manufacturing jobs within recent months. He said, “We’re going to export more product and we’re going to outsource fewer jobs.



Killer slashes bartender’s throat, prosecutor says

Bartender Ann McSween was beaten and choked before her throat was slashed by her alleged killer, Joseph Thomas, according to prosecutors this morning at the man’s capital murder trial.

He is also accused of raping McSween multiple times. Thomas, 26, faces the death penalty in the Thanksgiving 2010 slaughter of the popular bartender at the former Mario’s Lakeway Lounge in Mentor-on-the-Lake. Thomas is charged with aggravated murder, kidnapping, rape, aggravated robbery and tampering with evidence.







BITE-SIZED NEWS, April 20th, 2012


El Salvador has first murder-free day in three years

No one was murdered in El Salvador on Saturday, April 14, making it the country’s first homicide-free day in nearly three years. The Central American country is plagued by violent drug gangs.

“After years when the number of murders reached alarming levels of up to 18 per day, we saw not one homicide in the country,” President Mauricio Funes said in a statement released on Sunday. The murder-free day was the first recorded since leftist Funes took office in June 2009.

According to Reuters, at the beginning of Funes’ term, the country had an average of 12 murders a day.

According to the United Nations data, El Salvador has recently tallied a homicide rate of 66 per 100,000 people — one of the highest in the world (



Strike at Hostess threatens Ho Hos and Twinkies

Hostess Brands, the ever-reliable provider of Twinkies and Wonder Bread, heads to court this coming Tuesday (April 24) in an effort to throw out its union contracts.

The company is asking the bankruptcy court in White Plains, N.Y., to tear up labor agreements, which would, among other things, allow Hostess to change how it funds union pensions.

The company filed for bankruptcy in January, its second time filing for bankruptcy since 2004.

Both management and the unions agree that the company is unlikely to survive a strike (



Norweigian killer Breivik pleads not guilty

The Norwegian anti-Islamic gunman who massacred 77 people, Anders Behring Breivik, said in court on Tuesday, April 17, that his shooting spree and bomb attack was “sophisticated and spectacular” and that he would do the same thing again.

Breivik, 33, pleaded not guilty and said he was defending his country by setting off a car bomb that killed eight people at government headquarters in Oslo last July, then shooting another 69 individuals at a youth summer camp organized by the ruling Labour Party.

“The July 22 attacks were preemptive attacks to defend the Norweigian people,” said Breivik (

Bite-Sized News, April 13th, 2012


‘Anchorman’ sequel in the works, causes excitement

On March 28, while Will Ferrell was on Conan O’Brien’s set, he revealed that there will be a sequel to “Anchorman.”

While speaking with AM760/Salon, co-writer/director Adam McKay made several hints about the movie, which is currently being scripted. “I don’t want to give away too much … but I’ll just say one phrase for you: custody battle. I’ll give you one other one: bowling for dollars” (

According to, most of the principal cast members will reappear in the sequel, including Steve Carell and Paul Rudd. Paramount Pictures will also help produce the sequel.

It has been seven years since the original movie was released, but fans are as excited as ever.



3-year-old finds live hand grenade at Easter egg hunt

An Easter egg hunt in Somerset, England came to a dramatic end when children searching for chocolate and candy stumbled upon a live hand grenade.

The grenade, believed to be left over from World War II, was found by a 3-year-old boy in a field next to a busy road. He thought it was a rock.

As people were counting eggs at the end of the invigorating adventure, a father of three saw the boy “standing on an object … it was brown and about four inches high” (

Police arrived and contacted an Army explosives team, who detonated the grenade (



A custom coffin for the bacon lover

Do you love bacon to death? Is your dying wish to be buried in bacon? The local company behind Bacon Salt and Baconnaise is making it happen.

J&D’s Foods has created the Bacon Coffin, what they call the world’s first bacon-wrapped casket.

“Yes, this is really real,” wrote J&D owners Justin and Dave in a press release. “Bacon Coffins are finished with a painted bacon and pork shading and accented with fold stationary handles. The interior has an adjustable bed and mattress, a bacon memorial tube and is completed in ivory crepe coffin linens” (weeklyworldnews).

The Bacon Coffins are available for $2,999 plus shipping.

National, International, National, April 6th


NYPD’s ‘Stop, Question and Frisk’ program accused of racial profiling

New York Police are becoming more powerful after a recent program, titled “Stop, Question and Frisk,” was implemented in order to combat the number of murders and other violent crimes in New York City. Many critics are charging that the new law gives the NYPD too much power and encourages racial profiling.

After the law was introduced last year, close to 700,000 searches took place in the city, contributing to last year’s historically low murder rate. Police Commissioner Ray Kelly claims that the program takes 800 guns a year off the streets as well.

Other city councilmen think that “Stop, Question and Frisk” isn’t achieving its goals, saying that communities are losing trust with the New York Police Department (



Sir Paul McCartney’s son calls for ‘Beatles: The Next Generation’

James McCartney, the son of famed Beatles member Paul McCartney, has reached out to the sons of the other members in order to form a new supergroup that could be “better than the Beatles.”

Sean Lennon, Dhani Harrison (thenewno2), and Zak Starr  (The Who/Oasis) have all taken after their fathers and joined bands, save Lennon, who plays solo shows. McCartney currently plays guitar with his father. Starr is the only one who remains hesitant about the project.

When asked about his ambitious goal, McCartney said “I would love to be equal to The Beatles — but even that’s quite tough” (



Scientists find use of Body Mass Index outdated

The Body Mass Index (BMI) is a ratio of a person’s height to their weight, and doctors and other health officials have been relying on the BMI as a measurement of a person’s health for decades. However, a new study finds that the use of BMI may lead Americans to continue to underestimate the alarming obesity rate in the country.

“We’ve known for a long time that BMI is not a perfect measurement, and it’s important to look at the overall picture. It turns out people who are classified as overweight in fact have a bit more to worry about,” says James Hospedales, the chief of noncommunicable diseases at the World Health Organization (




Billy Bob Thorton to make movie about ex Jolie

Most break-ups tend to consist of a few months of Facebook relationship demotions, awkward run-ins (especially at Wooster) and a feverish return to the gym so you can look hotter first, before it all fades into an unpleasant memory.

But not for Billy Bob Thorton, who has decided to make a movie inspired by his time with ex-wife Angelina Jolie.

Titled “And Then We Drove,” it will be an “ethereal” story about a man who picks up a “wild woman” while on a road trip and learns a thing or two about life and love. Billy Bob Thorton says he and Jolie are still “besties,” and spend their days texting, though perhaps not for much longer (



Gender-bending supermodel to walk the runway

An androgynous supermodel will break new ground at New York Fashion Week by strutting the catwalk as both a man and a woman.

Although male, Serbian Andrej Pejic, 20, has been featured in ads for push-up bras, modeled wedding gowns and graced the covers of countless women’s style magazines.

Represented by Storm Models, the same agency as Kate Moss, he was catapulted into modeling high-end women’s fashion by Carine Roitfeld, the former editor of Vogue Paris (



Brothel opens its doors to homeless

Homeless people are queuing up at an Austrian brothel after the owner offered them free rooms during the current cold spell. Peter Laskaris, owner of the Red Rooms Laufhaus in Vienna, has opened his door to the homeless as temperatures of minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit hit the city.

He is offering 10 people a night a bed in his brothel for free, including a hot shower and a hot meal. But he added, “Other services are not included … We are not really doing much business in the current cold weather anyway and … a lot of people are off away with their families. Lots of our rooms are empty and it seemed a shame not to use them for a good cause. In these cold temperatures, nobody should be left out on the streets” (