Maybe Appalachian Babies Have Birth Defects Because of Inbreeding, Lawyers Suggest
Four lawyers face an ethics complaint after helpfully pointing out that a study of mountaintop mining and birth defects in Appalachia “failed to account for consanquinity [sic], one of the most prominent sources of birth defects.” In non-legalese: maybe those babies have defects because of how hillbillies like to screw within the family all the time.
The lawyers’ firm, Crowell & Moring, has publicly apologized for the comment. Nevertheless, a law professor has just filed the ethics complaint, claiming that the comment might have been intended to drum up business from coal mining companies for Cromwell (which has represented the National Mining Association and other mining-related outfits). The complaint also points out that “research has conclusively established that Appalachians are no more prone to inbreeding than any other population, such as white-collar professionals or for that matter, attorneys that work at Crowell & Moring.” Zing!
In related news, medical science has shown that most birth defects in Appalachia are caused by excessive moonshine abuse among expecting mothers.
Posted at 06:27 PM ET, 10/08/2011
The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum on the Mall was abruptly closed Saturday afternoon after a “large group of protesters” tried to push past security guards and enter the museum, Smithsonian spokeswoman Linda St. Thomas said.
A demonstrator lies on the ground at an entrance to the National Air and Space Museum after police pepper-sprayed a group of protesters trying to get into the museum Saturday. (Jose Luis Magana – AP) At least one demonstrator was pepper-sprayed by a museum guard in the confrontation, St. Thomas said. Several witnesses said that more than a dozen people were affected by the spray.
The museum was closed at about 3:15 p.m., St. Thomas said.
Some of the protesters were affiliated with the Occupy DC protest that sprung up at McPherson Square last week as an offshoot of the larger Occupy Wall Street movement in New York, said Cody Steele, an American University senior who participated in the march to the museum.
Steele said the march was planned, however, by a different but like-minded group of protesters — known as the October 2011 group — who have been camped out in Freedom Plaza since Oct. 6.
“It’s a shifting movement,” said Steele, who has spent time with both protest groups over the last week. “They are separate, but it’s a common set of goals.”
The two groups’ grievances span a range of issues, including corporate power, environmental destruction and militarism. On Sunday, they were demonstrating at the museum against the U.S. military’s use of drones in overseas wars, witnesses said.
As many as 200 people tried to enter the museum through doors facing the National Mall, St. Thomas said, while others gathered at the museum’s Independence Avenue entrance. The demonstrators carried large signs and other items not allowed inside the museum, St. Thomas said.
When a security guard told them they could not enter, demonstrators pushed the guard outside and up against a wall, St. Thomas said. Another guard approached and pepper-sprayed one protester before D.C. police and U.S. Park Police were called, she said. One person was arrested, St. Thomas said.
No one was seriously hurt by the pepper spray, said Pete Piringer, a spokesman for D.C. Fire and EMS. First-responders treated several people at the scene, Piringer said, but all affected by the pepper spray refused transport to hospitals for further evaluation.
The museum is to reopen Sunday at 10 a.m., St. Thomas said.
Published October 08, 2011
July 5: Casey Anthony hugs her attorney, Jose Baez, after hearing a jury clear her of killing her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee.
ORLANDO, Fla.– Disguised in sunglasses and a baseball cap, Casey Anthony was deposed Saturday for a civil lawsuit that accuses her of ruining another woman’s reputation.
Attorneys for Zenaida Gonzalez used videoconferencing to question Anthony, who was at an undisclosed location in Florida.
John Morgan, who is representing Gonzalez, said he asked Anthony about the disappearance of her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee. Anthony told detectives in 2008 that Caylee had been kidnapped by a nanny named Zenaida Gonzalez.
Detectives said no such baby sitter existed. Morgan’s client, who has the same name as the fictional baby sitter, has sued Anthony, claiming her reputation was ruined.
Anthony answered few questions and her attorney, Charles Greene, repeatedly invoked the Fifth Amendment, Morgan said.
“I think there were times where some of the questions irritated her,” Morgan said, pointing to questions about her mother and father, and her brother’s testimony.
Morgan said Anthony tried to disguise herself by wearing a Philadelphia Phillies baseball cap and long, thick black hair that appeared to be from a wig. She also wore a large pair of Dolce and Gabbana sunglasses, Morgan said.
He described her as “not happy to be there.”
A message left for Greene by The Associated Press on Saturday after the deposition was not immediately returned.
Anthony was acquitted of killing Caylee and released from jail in July. She is now serving probation on an unrelated charge at an undisclosed location in Florida.