Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Sins Of The Father Continued, Immigration Issues, Columbian Cocaine, Pesky Chavez, TSA Breach, Grannie Attacked, and CA Fires (Monday's Second Hour)

Hi everyone. When last we left our hero, Thomas Roberts was recounting his infuriating and heartbreaking tale of sexual abuse to an empathetic Anderson Cooper. Anderson quickly brings us up to speed and we learn that Father Jeff was sentenced to five years in jail, with all but 18 months suspended. Oh yeah, that's fair. As you might guess, Thomas did not like this one bit and seeing as though he is no longer a scared teenager, he did something about it. Both Thomas and Michael Goles testified before Maryland's Judiciary Committee to try to get the laws changed. We see (I guess they tape these things or was CNN there?) Thomas bringing the infuriating news that someone with an overdue library book just got a longer sentence than his abuser. You tell them, Thomas! Thomas and Michael's main objective was to"speak on behalf of two bills that would extend the civil statute and in essence give abuse victims a voice." And if this was a movie I could tell you there's a happy ending, but this is real life and there is no Santa Claus. The archdiocese of Baltimore launched a fierce campaign against the bills, even having people pray about it. Both bills were defeated.

Meanwhile this past December, after 10 months into his sentence, Father Jeff got a hearing and his attorney complained that his living conditions were too tough. Oh well, boo hoo. So okay, life is fundamentally unfair so you guys know what's coming: Father Jeff gets to do the rest of his time at home. And even though he's been relieved of his pastoral duties, he still remains a priest. Outraged yet? Here's one more for you: "When he finishes what little is left of his home detention, he won't even have to register on a sex offender list because his crimes against children predate those laws." Ahh! Lately when I get mad about something I have no control over I've given to walking around my house. (I wore down my carpet during Katrina.) I am totally feeling the urge to walk right now. But you know? Thomas is going to be okay. "When it comes to this part of my life, I have -- I've been to hell and back and survived. " Yeah you did. Father Jeff will get his. Karma? I hear she's a bitch. After the special Anderson reads blog comments and they're all positive. Now I know there were some negative ones too, but I totally don't blame him for being one-sided tonight. I mean, there is no other side to this issue.

Big transition now to a Jason Carroll piece on a new ordinance in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, that "imposes fines on landlords who rent to illegal immigrants, denies permits to companies that give them jobs, allows the city to investigate complaints over a person's immigration status. The city also declared English as its official language." Critics complain that this ordinance is unconsitutional because it's up to the federal government, not local governments, to deal with these kinds of issues. To discuss this, we're joined by...Lou Dobbs! He must have heard the word "immigration" and come running. Some may say that Lou gives the commentary that other anchors don't want to give, so it's okay that he comes into other studios. However, I think he's actually stealing commentary time away from anchors who are very much willing to commentate. Maybe we can fence him in his studio. Hmm. So anyway, blah blah blah. Lou's no lawyer, but he thinks local governments have a right to do something about the problem and he also thinks that when these issues come up people always fall back on claiming racism. Okay then.

Next up we have a Karl Penhaul piece on the cocaine trade in Columbia. The drug trade is such a way of life in the country that in some villages people actually pay for groceries with cocaine. OMG. Washington, of course, bankrolls Bogota's fight against the drug, which we seem to be losing BTW. But perhaps we should be listening to the traffickers, like the one in the piece that says this: "They haven't been able to wipe out cocoa here because instead of investing in weapons and warplanes, they should be giving peasant farmers aid and loans." Maybe the traffickers should be running the government. After the piece Anderson tells us that "Lou Dobbs has been keeping a close eye on the drugstore in Mexico. You might say he's been keeping them honest." No, actually I wouldn't. And then Lou is back again. Man. Anderson wonders how Mexican president Felipe Calderon is doing. Lou actually has less problems with him than he does with Bush. Bwah! Then Anderson asks what the US is doing wrong in the war on drugs and Lou pulls out his secure borders mantra. Anderson also wonders if with all the immigration attention whether anything has actually changed. Lou says no and actually it's even worse. Awesome.

Moving on now to a Tom Foreman piece on how Bush is making friends everywhere he goes. Bush has been spending some time in Latin America and, yeah, things were set on fire. But really this piece is mostly about Hugo Chavez and how he's just such a pest. The Bush-is-the-devil comments are brought up and it's noted that Chavez has even run ads in the US touting his cheap oil charity. Bush has basically ignored all of this. Oh, no axis of evil spot for you, Hugo. Next up we have a Jeanne Meserve piece on a TSA breach. So, funny story. You know how you have to take off your shoes and all that to make sure you're oh so safe on a plane? Yeah, well, somebody just got on 14 guns. Uh huh. Is it sad I'm not surprised? So anyway, the TSA is freaking and implementing new random searches and precautions, so everyone can feel safe now...until the next time this happens.

Transitioning now to an Anderson piece on a 101-year old women who got mugged. WTF? Who beats on an old lady? And then the guy moved on to beat on an 85-year old. At least mug someone in your age range, man. Dude, what is this world coming to? After this we have a Dan Simon piece in which we learn that California is on fire. Again. This is one of the driest seasons ever, so that's why the fire season is starting early this year. Bummer. Pray for rain, people. And we're out.


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