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February 16th, 2010
07:00 PM ET

TSA makes a 4-yr.-old disabled boy remove leg braces

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

They couldn't catch a guy with a bomb in his shorts aboard a plane bound for Detroit on Christmas day… but they're hell on a disabled child with leg braces.

The transportation security administration refused to allow a four-year-old disabled boy to pass through airport security without first taking off his leg braces.

A Philadelphia Inquirer columnist reports how screeners at the Philadelphia airport made this insane request of a boy taking his first flight to Walt Disney World last March.

The four-year-old, who was born premature, has malformed ankles and low muscle tone in his legs. He was just starting to walk at the time of the incident.

The parents told airport screeners their son couldn't walk without the braces, which are made of metal and plastic. But that didn't matter to the screener, who insisted this little boy had to walk through the checkpoint on his own.

When the father, a New Jersey police officer, asked to see a supervisor and pointed out his four-year-old clearly wasn't a terrorist, he says the supervisor told him: "You know why we're doing this."

The TSA now says the boy never should have been told to remove his braces. No kidding. They say the parents should have been told to take their son to a private screening area. The TSA has apologized to the family. With all the training these agents go through, maybe they could include a class in common sense.

Here’s my question to you: Is the TSA going too far when it makes a 4-year-old disabled boy remove his leg braces?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST


Filed under: Travel
February 16th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

94-yr.-old man dies of natural causes on death row

ALT TEXT

(PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Something is very wrong when a 94-year-old man dies on death row.

The oldest inmate in the U.S. on death row died of natural causes in Arizona - according to the state's department of corrections. A lawyer for Viva Leroy Nash says the man had been imprisoned almost his entire life since he was 15 years old.

Consider his history:

  • Nash was sent to prison as far back as 1930 for an armed robbery
  • He then served time for shooting a police officer
  • He was sentenced to two life sentences for a robbery and murder
  • He escaped from prison and went on to kill again; later being convicted of first-degree murder, armed robbery, aggravated assault and theft

What a guy. Nash was sentenced to death in 1983 - 27 years ago - during which time he filed several unsuccessful appeals.

Nash's lawyer says the inmate was deaf, mostly blind, and had dementia. He insists Nash was mentally ill for decades - which should have kept him off death row.

Just imagine how much this has cost the American taxpayers.

It's estimated that death row inmates typically spend more than a decade awaiting execution with some prisoners, like Nash, remaining on death row for over 20 years.

What's more, the population on death row is aging, in part because of how long the appeals process takes.

Some experts question the constitutionality of the extra punishment of holding these inmates on death row for such extended periods of time.

Here’s my question to you: What does it say about the criminal justice system when a 94-year-old man dies of natural causes on death row?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST


Filed under: Crime and Punishment
February 16th, 2010
05:00 PM ET

Why doesn't Palin want news media to cover some of her speeches?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Sarah Palin may be talking; but it sounds like she doesn't want the media to hear her.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that Palin is banning all video and sound recordings at two high-profile, big-ticket speeches in Florida in the next month.

Sponsors of these speeches say the rules for the events are set by Palin's agents. Members of the media can buy a ticket like anyone else - for a couple hundred bucks, that is. But no pictures, audio or video recording allowed. Also, Palin has banned media in most cases at her book signings - except for brief photo-ops.

You'd think someone considering a run for the White House in 2012 would want as much media coverage as possible. Which is what happens whenever the former VP candidate opens her mouth. The media just eat it up.

But that may be part of the problem too: Take Palin's widely covered Tea Party speech for example, where media coverage was allowed: While the base loves what she's selling, Palin has come under lots of criticism for the crib notes she had scribbled on her hand.

Meanwhile new poll numbers suggest Palin may want to reconsider a potential White House run. A Washington Post-ABC News survey shows only 37 percent of Americans have a favorable view of her - 55 percent have an unfavorable view.

Plus a whopping 71 percent say Palin is not qualified to be president - that includes more than half of Republicans. Only a quarter think she is qualified to sit in the Oval Office. Wonder who those people are?

Here’s my question to you: Why does Sarah Palin not want the news media to cover some of her speeches?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST


Filed under: News Media • Sarah Palin