[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/05/20/art.washington.capitol.jpg caption="I’ve been out west all week, and with each passing day I am more reminded of how distant Washington, D.C. can seem to most of the nation."]
Tom Foreman | BIO
As I write this, I am rolling through the wilds of New Mexico amid majestic rock outcroppings, achingly blue skies, and, of course, countless natural casino formations. I’m not sure precisely when archaeologists began unearthing them, but they certainly seem to be everywhere these days. Casinos, I mean, not archaeologists.
I’ve been out here all week looking at the economy of the west, and with each passing day I am more reminded of how distant Washington, D.C., with all of its sturm and drang, can seem to most of the nation. For example, while the political pundits were chopping up the results of this week’s voting like Morimoto with a new chef’s knife, is the rest of America? Uh, not so much. People went to work, helped the kids with homework, got haircuts, complained about their haircuts, bought televisions, complained there was nothing on, ate Bloomin’ Onions, and maybe…just maybe…read an article about the results of that polling. But I’m pretty sure that was about it.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/05/20/art.vert.marion.suge.knight.jpg caption="Authorities in California said rap music mogul Marion “Suge” Knight was arrested early Thursday morning for allegedly pointing a gun at a man. His lawyer says Knight is innocent." width=292 height=320]
The lawyer for Marion “Suge” Knight said the rap music mogul did not point a gun at a man Wednesday night in the Los Angeles area.
“He’s innocent, 100%,” Marc Brumer told CNN in a phone interview. “Suge Knight is a businessman. He is not a person who would carry a gun or flash a gun at anybody. That’s not Suge Knight.”
Knight, 45, was charged with assault with a deadly weapon involving a firearm and with driving under a suspended license, the Los Angeles Police said.
According to investigators, an unidentified man reported that Knight aimed a weapon at him. Knight, who co-founded Death Row Records, was later found driving a Cadillac Escalade in the city of Gardena, in the greater Los Angeles area, police said. He was arrested in the city of Gardena without incident just after midnight, authorities said.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/05/21/pakistan.facebook.protest.jpg caption="Protesters in Pakistan shout slogans against the published caricatures of Prophet Mohammed on Facebook."]
Special to CNN
(CNN) - For a country that has produced five military dictators in 60 years, mourned the 2007 assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, and struggles continually against its own militant extremists who have killed thousands in their own nation, Pakistan has absolutely picked the wrong fight by banning Facebook and YouTube because of an idiotic virtual campaign called "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day."
According to a story on CNN.com, Pakistan blocked access to YouTube - a day after it shut down the social networking site Facebook - after an online group called on people to draw the Prophet Mohammed. In response, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority ordered its operators to shut down YouTube "in view of growing sacrilegious content on it."
Instead of knee-jerk political reactions and impassioned threats of violence, as proud millennial Muslims we should reflect and ponder how our Prophet Mohammed would have responded to such silly faux controversies.
Editor's Note: CNN Education Contributor Steve Perry has a blueprint for America’s teachers, parents, decision makers and anyone who cares about the education of America’s children. In our series ‘Perry's Principles,’ Steve identifies a challenge and highlights successful examples of how the challenge was solved by introducing you to the passionate people behind each approach. Every Thursday, AC360° will illustrate one of Perry's Principles and tell you how you can be involved in educating America's youth.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/05/21/art.vert.emu.jpg caption="When I start talking about owning an emu ranch, you know I've been sleep deprived for too long. It's time to go home." width=292 height=320]
Tom Foreman | BIO
Reporter's Note: I’m about ready to head for the airport and wrap up my latest western swing. So it seems like a good time to post today’s letter to President Obama.
Dear Mr. President,
I’m winding up my trip to New Mexico and preparing to come back to DC. Which is nice, because I’ll be with my family again, and not so nice since I really enjoy spending time outside of the Beltway. I suppose if I were a billionaire I’d just bring them along on every business trip and that would be grand. Of course, if I were a billionaire I guess I would not have to go on any business trips anyway. I’d just sit around playing ukulele and watching old movies all the time.
A friend and I once spent the better part of a long business drive talking about how entertaining it would be to own an emu ranch and herd them around while riding on a big ostrich; trotting up to greet visitors; wearing a fluttering pink kimono over a t-shirt and short pants, cowboy boots and hat, Ray Bans, and waving a martini glass. “Hello! Welcome to my ‘I’m a billionaire emu ranch!’ Saddle up a bird and let’s ride!” Actually, I don’t wear kimonos, drink martinis or wear boots, so I guess I just like the idea of someone doing that…not necessarily me.
Anyway, I’m drifting a bit into the goofiness of sleep deprivation. It’s always that way when we do these Building Up America trips. I tend to get up around 6 in the morning and get to sleep around 1:30 all week. But no complaints. I’m blessed with a good job and a natural love of meeting folks and hearing their stories, so all is right with the world.
Once during a job interview a million years ago, a big news executive asked me how I felt about travel. I said, “I like a reasonable amount of travel.”
“What’s reasonable?” he responded.
“I think if you are at work or on the road so much that you can’t be a real part of your family, your children’s school, your church, or your neighborhood, you can wind up pretty ill-prepared to report on other people’s families, kids’ schools, churches, and neighborhoods.”
I still feel that way. Even in hard times I think people need to keep perspective. Travel helps with that. And so does coming home.
Hope all is well in White House land. Call if you are free for five minutes. That would also be a good way of keeping perspective. Ha!
Editor's Note: You wrote, we listened! Most of your feedback was on the oill spill and our landmark Kids and Race series. You thanked Anderson for keeping the oil leak in the news and are still giving suggestions on how to stop it.
I don't understand the dynamic forces behind the oil spill. Why does the oil continue to gush? Is there something there pumping the oil out? Is it forced out by pressure beneath the earth? Can you explain what is causing this calamity?
I live about 3 miles from the beach and we are beginning to smell oil in the air. Can someone tell us if this is dangerous to breathe?