[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/LIVING/01/27/haiti.orphans.overview/t1larg.orphan.kids.haiti.gi.afp.jpg caption="Young children are seen at an orphanage near Port-au-Prince, following the earthquake that rocked Haiti." width=300 height=169]
There's nothing like images of infants and children in distress to make outsiders yearn to help, which is why the unfolding story of Haiti's orphans - the most helpless of earthquake victims - has kept people riveted.
But what can be done and what should be the focus of attention and efforts remains a mystery to many Americans, who are flooding the phone lines of organizations, seeking to adopt these children - immediately.
The offer to open arms, hearts and homes is no doubt well-intentioned, but several leading aid organizations recently said new adoptions should stop and not be rushed. They want to protect children wrongly identified as orphans from being moved out of the country or falling victim to child traffickers.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/02/11/c1main.statue.afp.gi.jpg caption="20 years ago today, Nelson Mandela was released from Cape Town jail." width=300 height=169]
Special to CNN
Freedom lovers everywhere over a certain age recall the thrilling news 20 years ago today that Nelson Mandela had been released from a Cape Town, South Africa, jail.
After 27 years of isolation and hard labor, the world's most famous political prisoner emerged without bitterness, his humanity intact. When asked what he most missed while in prison, Mandela replied that it was hearing the sounds of children laughing.
Now 92 and frail, Mandela has declined to participate in this week's many celebrations in his honor except one: the opening of Parliament and the address to the nation by South African President Jacob Zuma.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/POLITICS/02/07/palin.presidential.run.tea.party/story.palin.tea.party.cnn.jpg caption="Roland Martin says Sarah Palin's falsity is shown by her different reactions to use of retard." width=300 height=169]
Roland S. Martin | BIO
CNN Political Analyst
Sarah Palin's most ardent supporters in "real America" love to suggest that those of us who don't buy into her shtick fail to grasp why they love her, citing her realness, plain-spokenness and whatever else they can conjure up.
Folks, nice try, but as a native Texan, I've seen many politicians and wannabes over the years who had charm, wit, charisma and a twinkle in their eye.
Anyone who has listened to the best football coaches the Lone Star State has to offer will tell you that they can persuade a mother and father to send their boy to hell to fetch a glass of ice water and bring him home a better man. They could teach a politician or two how to connect with average Americans.
Joe Johns | BIO
Editor's Note: Former President Bill Clinton was in good spirits Thursday after undergoing a procedure to insert two stents into one of his coronary arteries, his office said.
Clinton, 63, was hospitalized at the Columbia campus of New York-Presbyterian Hospital after experiencing discomfort in his chest, according to Douglas Band, counselor to the former president.
Clinton was in Haiti last week for his second visit since the earthquake. On February 3, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon placed Clinton in charge of overseeing aid and reconstruction efforts there. Watch Joe Johns' report about the work Clinton has been doing in Haiti.
In what the authorities in Ohio call a first for the state, a man has been accused of tattooing an infant.
Lee Michael Deitrick applied the tattoo on the buttocks of a one-year-old girl, Louisville Police Chief Andrew Turowski told CNN. “I cannot come up with a reasonable explanation as to why anybody would do such a thing,” he said.
Deitrick, 21, branded an “A” on the baby’s skin. Turowski said the mark was about half an inch in size. The incident occurred at Deitrick’s home last November but they weren’t informed of the allegation until last week, police said.
The suspect is described as a friend of the child’s mother who has not been charged in connection with the crime. “We have nothing to suggest that the mother played a part in this,” said Turowski.
Deitrick is charged with endangering the welfare of children, which is a felony, and is currently at the Stark County Jail. He is expected to appear at a preliminary hearing on February 17.
Deitrick has had brushes with the law in the past. He pleaded no contest to domestic violence in 2008 and was also charged with aggravated assault in the same year.
The tattoo has not been removed from the child’s skin, Turowski said.
“This is the first time I’ve seen an incident that involved a child being tattooed,” he added, “hopefully, the last.”
For more crime coverage go to cnn.com/crime.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/02/10/art.zhuara.rivera.jpg caption="Zhuara Rivera, a 14-year-old student, reader and activist."]
A cross between the AC360° series “What’s Next” and The Proust questionnaire, AC360° Producer David Puente asks newsmakers his own set of questions. If in the The Proust Questionnaire – named for the writer Marcel Proust who popularized it – the individual responding reveals his or her true nature, then in this questionnaire we’ll learn about the individual and about “what’s next” in the coming century.
Zhuara Rivera, teenage student, avid reader & activist
B. Dalton, the only bookstore in Laredo, Texas, offered a fairy tale world for 14-year-old Zhuara Rivera. She could get lost in all the stories on all those pages. But on January 16, Barnes & Noble, which owns B. Dalton, closed the bookstore. Now, Zhuara has to travel 150 miles to San Antonio to find a shop that sells books. So she and dozens of volunteers launched a grassroots organization called "Laredo Reads" collecting signatures to support a bookstore in Laredo. Zhuara has collected 2,500 signatures and counting. She says she won’t stop until a new bookstore opens in her city.
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Special to AC360°
The 1979 Iranian revolution took place during the Cold War. During this time Third World societies were deeply influenced by anti-imperial ideologies. Although the Iranian revolution had an Islamic character, the Islam that was turned into a political ideology was influenced by the ‘progressive’ ideology of those days, i.e. Bolshevik Marxism.
In broad terms, Iranian revolutionaries wanted independence from foreign control and were critical of Western intervention that was supporting political despotism in Iran. The Shah of Iran was considered to be the regional gendarme of American imperialism in the Middle East. A popular slogan during this period was “after the [downfall of the] Shah it is America’s turn [to be defeated].”
Anti-Western sentiment at the time had two separate meanings: anti-imperialism in a Leninist sense of the term; and a critique of modernity in the Heidegerrian sense of philosophical critique. The other popular slogan at the time was a demand for social justice. What was missing, however, from political discourse at the time was a serious consideration of the ethical requirements of democracy and human rights.
CNN Financial News Producer
The number of Americans filing first-time claims unemployment insurance fell sharply last week to the lowest level in more than a year
Initial claims for jobless benefits fell by 43,000 to a seasonally adjusted 440,000 in the week ended Feb. 6, the Labor Dept. said. And the number of people who continue to collect benefits for a week or more - known as continuing claims – dropped by 79,000 to just over 4.5 million in the week ended Jan. 30, the most recent data available.
A Labor Dept. spokesman said the snow storm that crippled much of the East Coast last week did not impact the number of jobless claims filed, but at least one analyst expects that next week's numbers – reflecting claims from this week - will definitely be impacted by Wednesday’s blizzard.
The largest increase in initial claims for the week ending Jan. 30 was in Pennsylvania (+10,495) with layoffs in the construction, trade, and service industries.
The largest decrease was in New Jersey (-1,819) due to fewer layoffs in trade and service industries.