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Day February 22, 2010

Toll Collectors Gone Wild

From The Smoking Gun:

The overwhelming majority of New Jersey state employees are courteous, hard-working individuals eager to aid the public for whom they work. And then there is the small number of toll collectors employed by the New Jersey Turnpike Authority who regularly go rogue on motorists. On the following pages you’ll find an entertaining selection of complaint letters sent to turnpike officials by motorists who ran into assorted trouble when trying to pay their way on the Garden State Parkway or the New Jersey Turnpike. More than 550 letters–covering the past 18 months and addressing a variety of types of complaints–were released after TSG filed a freedom of information request with the state authority.

(via J-Walk)

Chat Roulette: The Movie

(NSFWish)

(via Geekologie)

Christopher Hitchens vs. Douglas Wilson

Utah Bill Criminalizes Miscarriage

From RH Reality Check:

A bill passed by the Utah House and Senate this week and waiting for the governor’s signature, will make it a crime for a woman to have a miscarriage, and make induced abortion a crime in some instances.

According Lynn M. Paltrow, executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women, what makes Utah’s proposed law unique is that it is specifically designed to be punitive toward pregnant women, not those who might assist or cause an illegal abortion or unintended miscarriage.

The bill passed by legislators amends Utah’s criminal statute to allow the state to charge a woman with criminal homicide for inducing a miscarriage or obtaining an illegal abortion. The basis for the law was a recent case in which a 17-year-old girl, who was seven months pregnant, paid a man $150 to beat her in an attempt to cause a miscarriage. Although the girl gave birth to a baby later given up for adoption, she was initially charged with attempted murder. However the charges were dropped because, at the time, under Utah state law a woman could not be prosecuted for attempting to arrange an abortion, lawful or unlawful.

The bill passed by the Utah legislature would change that. While the bill does not affect legally obtained abortions, it criminalizes any actions taken by women to induce a miscarriage or abortion outside of a doctor’s care, with penalties including up to life in prison.

And here’s the real kicker:

Using the legal standard of “reckless behavior” all a district attorney needs to show is that a woman behaved in a manner that is thought to cause miscarriage, even if she didn’t intend to lose the pregnancy. Drink too much alcohol and have a miscarriage? Under the new law such actions could be cause for prosecution.

“This creates a law that makes any pregnant woman who has a miscarriage potentially criminally liable for murder,” says Missy Bird, executive director of Planned Parenthood Action Fund of Utah. Bird says there are no exemptions in the bill for victims of domestic violence or for those who are substance abusers. The standard is so broad, Bird says, “there nothing in the bill to exempt a woman for not wearing her seatbelt who got into a car accident.”

(via Slog)

Question of the Day

How are ya today?

I thought I was in a good mood. I had a good night’s sleep and managed to wake up with plenty of time to make some breakfast before going to work. And then I got in a fight on the phone with an automated menu system. And lost. It was one of those menus where you have to speak your answer instead of hitting a touch tone. I had to answer either yes or no. I said yes. It couldn’t understand me. Yes. YES! Yeah. Yeppers. Affirmitive. Si! OUI! Ndiyo! FOR FUCKSAKE JUST LET ME HIT 1 for yes.

Now I’m annoyed. And apparently can’t even speak English.

Daily Bible Discussion

Yet she increased her prostitution, remembering the days of her youth when she engaged in prostitution in the land of Egypt. She lusted after their genitals – as large as those of donkeys, and their seminal emission was as strong as that of stallions. -Ezekiel 23:19-20

Retractable Chopsticks

(via DoobyBrain)


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