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April 19th, 2010
11:55 AM ET
April 19th, 2010
11:32 AM ET

Video: Kevorkian doesn't deny playing God

Anderson Cooper | BIO
AC360° Anchor


Filed under: Anderson Cooper • Ethics
October 30th, 2009
07:27 PM ET

Documents: House Ethics Committee Response

AC360°

Editor's Note: Documents leaked from the House of Representatives Ethics committee, one of the most secretive and closely guarded in Congress, has forced the panel to publicly acknowledge at least eight active investigations into ethics breaches from current members of the House of Representatives. Read their response here.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Ethics • Raw Politics
October 30th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

New documents force House Ethics commmittee into spotlight

New York congressman Charlie Rangel is one of the most prominent names being investigated by the House Ethics committee.

New York congressman Charlie Rangel is one of the most prominent names being investigated by the House Ethics committee.

Editor's Note: Documents leaked from the House of Representatives Ethics committee, one of the most secretive and closely guarded in Congress, has forced the panel to publicly acknowledge at least eight active investigations into ethics breaches from current members of the House of Representatives. One of the most prominent names on that list has been Representative Charlie Rangel, Democrat from New York and chairman of the Ways and Means Committee.

Lisa Desjardins
CNN Political Ticker

Congressional Republicans intensified their calls for powerful House Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel of New York to resign his post heading the committee, at least temporarily.

Rep. John Carter, R-Texas, introduced a motion that would have forced Rangel to step down during an ongoing ethics investigation into his finances and activities.

House Democrats responded by voting to shut off debate and instead send the resolution to the House Ethics Committee, where the matter has sat for a year. The move to effectively kill the resolution by sending it to the committee passed on a mostly party-line 246-153 vote.

The vote has no significant effect but shows Republicans are turning up the heat on Rangel and hoping to score political points by highlighting the ethics probe.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: 360° Radar • Ethics
October 28th, 2009
11:20 AM ET

Eating animals is making us sick

Jonathan Safran Foer
Special to CNN

Like most people, I'd given some thought to what meat actually is, but until I became a father and faced the prospect of having to make food choices on someone else's behalf, there was no urgency to get to the bottom of things.

I'm a novelist and never had it in mind to write nonfiction. Frankly, I doubt I'll ever do it again. But the subject of animal agriculture, at this moment, is something no one should ignore. As a writer, putting words on the page is how I pay attention.

If the way we raise animals for food isn't the most important problem in the world right now, it's arguably the No. 1 cause of global warming: The United Nations reports the livestock business generates more greenhouse gas emissions than all forms of transportation combined.

It's the No. 1 cause of animal suffering, a decisive factor in the creation of zoonotic diseases like bird and swine flu, and the list goes on. It is the problem with the most deafening silence surrounding it.

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Filed under: Energy • Environmental issues • Ethics • H1N1
October 19th, 2009
10:49 AM ET

Morehouse dress code is more about homophobia than decorum

William Bynum says he discussed the new dress-wearing ban policy with Morehouse's campus gay organization.

William Bynum says he discussed the new dress-wearing ban policy with Morehouse's campus gay organization.

David A. Love
The Grio

Morehouse College, that legendary institution of higher learning in Atlanta, recently enacted a new dress code for its all-male student body. The dress code, called the "Appropriate Attire Policy", is a perfect example of the good, the bad, and even worse, the homophobic.

The policy – based on Morehouse President Dr. Robert M. Franklin's notion of the Renaissance Man – is part of his "Five Wells" strategy for the all-male historically black college or university which includes being "wMorehouse College, that legendary institution of higher learning in Atlanta, recently enacted a new dress code for its all-male student body. The dress code, called the "Appropriate Attire Policy," is a perfect example of the good, the bad, and even worse, the homophobic.

The policy – based on Morehouse President Dr. Robert M. Franklin's notion of the Renaissance Man – is part of his "Five Wells" strategy for the all-male historically black college or university which includes being "well read, well spoken, well traveled, well dressed and well balanced."

In an 11-point document, Morehouse outlined its expectations concerning the appearance of its students on campus. For example, the college forbids the wearing of do-rags, caps and hoods in classrooms and other indoor venues. Sunglasses are banned in class except for medical necessity, while "decorative orthodontic appliances," or grillz, are forbidden altogether on campus. Clothes with offensive messages are also prohibited, as are sagging pants. Students are also not allowed to wear pajamas or walk with bare feet in public.

Perhaps the most confounding, and yet revealing, part of the Morehouse rules is the ban on women's dress. "No wearing of clothing associated with women's garb (dresses, tops, tunics, purses, pumps, etc.) on the Morehouse campus or at College-sponsored events," reads the policy. Placed conspicuously at the end of the dress code, and so fundamentally different from the prohibitions that precede it, one gets the sense that in the end, the dress code is really all about that one sentence.

A statement by Dr. William Bynum, Morehouse vice president for student services, seems to support the argument. "We are talking about five students who are living a gay lifestyle that is leading them to dress a way we do not expect in Morehouse men," he said.

On one hand, I can understand that a school like Morehouse has a legacy to protect and a brand name to maintain. After all, this is the alma mater of Martin Luther King Jr., Julian Bond, Maynard Jackson, Spike Lee, and others. The value of an institution's stock rises or falls on the quality of its graduates and the leaders it produces.

Dr. Franklin described part of the Morehouse mystique Soul of Morehouse and the Future of the Mystique – abridged.pdf as "a fundamental sense of discontent with mediocrity and nonsense." In April 2009, he also told his students that "Morehouse men must be so sensitive to the presence of disorder, mediocrity and injustice that they cannot sleep well at night until they tip the scale toward justice. Unto whom much is given, much is required."

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Filed under: Ethics • Gay & Lesbian Issues
October 12th, 2009
12:32 PM ET

'Sweatbox' borrows from long tradition that's difficult to emulate

Emanuella Grinberg
CNN

The people who died Thursday at a spiritual resort in Arizona had spent time in a "sweatbox" similar to what Native Americans and other cultures have used for prayer and purification rituals throughout history.

And those who use them say they can be dangerous if care is not taken.

From Scandinavia to South America to Africa, people have come together in the sauna-like structures - typically heated by pouring water on hot lava rocks - for a variety of reasons, said Joseph Bruchac, writer and author of The Native American Sweat Lodge. He's part Abenaki, a tribe concentrated in the northeast United Staes, and part European.

"Each tribal nation has its own traditions, so one group might do it differently from another so you cannot generalize too much," said Bruchac, who runs an outdoor education center in Greenfield Center, New York.

In North America, most Native American tribes use the term "sweat lodge" to refer to a dome-shaped structure where the intimate ritual of the sweat takes place, said Bruchac, who has his own sweat lodge on his property in the foothills of the Adirondacks.

"Sweat lodges are typically used for a ritual preparation, like before a hunt, or nowadays, people might do it before a wedding or dance or some kind of community event as a way of putting yourself in balance," he said.

Bruchac noted that incidents like the one in Arizona tend to raise discussion in Native American communities over whether non-Natives should be allowed to adapt traditional ceremonies.

"It's a very meaningful ceremony. I can understand why people find it attractive," Bruchac said. "But I consider it sacrilegious and foolish to do someone else's rituals without proper guidance or practice, especially in sweat lodges where you're raising people's body temperatures. With that many people, oxygen is going to be depleted, and if you have heart problems or breathing problems, you could faint or die."

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Ethics
October 8th, 2009
05:33 PM ET

Rangel scandal timeline

Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear more from Peter Flaherty tonight on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

Peter Flaherty
President, National Legal & Policy Center

With the spotlight this week on House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY), we found this timeline of his current issues posted by the National Legal and Policy Center.

July 11, 2008- New York Times’ David Kocieniewski reports that Rangel occupies three rent-stabilized apartments in a luxury building, and uses a fourth as a campaign office.

July 14, 2008- NLPC files Complaint with the Federal Election commission alleging use of a rent-stabilized apartment for a campaign office comprises an illegal corporate contribution from the landlord. Rangel announces he will close the office.

July 15, 2008- Christopher Lee of the Washington Post reports that Rangel solicited donations on Congressional letterhead to the so-called Charles B. Rangel School of Public Service at City College of New York (CCNY), in violation of House rules.

Find the rest of the timeline here...


Filed under: Ethics • Raw Politics
October 8th, 2009
04:13 PM ET

GOP, citing ethics, calls for key House chairman to step down

Congressional Republicans intensified their calls Wednesday for Chairman Charlie Rangel of New York to resign his post.

Congressional Republicans intensified their calls Wednesday for Chairman Charlie Rangel of New York to resign his post.

Lisa Desjardin
CNN Radio

Congressional Republicans intensified their calls Wednesday for powerful House Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel of New York to resign his post heading the committee, at least temporarily.

Rep. John Carter, R-Texas, introduced a motion that would have forced Rangel to step down during an ongoing ethics investigation into his finances and activities.

House Democrats responded by voting to shut off debate and instead send the resolution to the House Ethics Committee, where the matter has sat for a year. The move to effectively kill the resolution by sending it to the committee passed on a mostly party-line 246-153 vote.

The vote has no significant effect but shows Republicans are turning up the heat on Rangel and hoping to score political points by highlighting the ethics probe.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Ethics • Republicans
October 7th, 2009
05:58 PM ET

Rangel scandal timeline

Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear more from Peter Flaherty tonight on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

Peter Flaherty
President, National Legal & Policy Center

With the spotlight this week on House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY), we found this timeline of his current issues posted by the National Legal and Policy Center.

July 11, 2008- New York Times’ David Kocieniewski reports that Rangel occupies three rent-stabilized apartments in a luxury building, and uses a fourth as a campaign office.

July 14, 2008- NLPC files Complaint with the Federal Election commission alleging use of a rent-stabilized apartment for a campaign office comprises an illegal corporate contribution from the landlord. Rangel announces he will close the office.

July 15, 2008- Christopher Lee of the Washington Post reports that Rangel solicited donations on Congressional letterhead to the so-called Charles B. Rangel School of Public Service at City College of New York (CCNY), in violation of House rules.

Find the rest of the timeline here...


Filed under: Ethics • Keeping Them Honest • Raw Politics
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