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Old 10-23-2012, 06:50 PM   #121
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Obviously sad given the circumstances, but his life story and the fact that voting was so important to him. Very impressive.



(AP)HONOLULU A photograph of a 93-year-old World War II veteran casting what will likely be his last ballot has captured the hearts of tens of thousands of Internet users.

The photo shows Frank Tanabe lying in a hospital bed at home as his daughter, Barbara Tanabe, helps him fill out his absentee ballot.

A half-million people saw the picture on the website Reddit after his grandson posted it there on Thursday, making it one of the most popular items on the social media network for a day after.

"True Patriotism" was the top-rated comment on the post. "This is America. Amen," was next, followed by "Thank you, Citizen."

Doctors diagnosed Tanabe with an inoperable cancer tumor in his liver two months ago. He's been in hospice care for the past three weeks at his daughter's home. His condition has been deteriorating, and he's been speaking little lately.

He's been determined to vote regardless, eagerly asking when the ballot would be arriving in the mail, his daughter said. She kept telling him, "Don't worry, it's coming." He filled it out immediately when it landed in the mailbox on Wednesday.

Barbara Tanabe read aloud the names of the candidates to her dad. He either nodded "yes" to the names or shook his head "no." She filled in the boxes on his behalf, following his instructions even when he didn't pick the people she wanted.

"There were some that were OK, but there were others where I said, `Dad, are you sure?"' she said.

But he knew what he was doing. He's kept up on the issues, reading newspapers regularly until only recently, she said.

Tanabe volunteered to join the Army from behind barbed wire at the Tule Lake internment camp in California. He was pulled out of college at the University of Washington and taken to the camp when President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered 110,000 Japanese-Americans detained and isolated after the start of the war with Japan.

The Army assigned Tanabe to the Military Intelligence Service, a classified unit whose members were collectively awarded the Congressional Gold Medal last year along with soldiers who served in the 100th Infantry Battalion and 442nd Regimental Combat Team -- highly decorated segregated units of mostly Japanese-Americans.

"I'd like to accept on behalf of all hyphenated Americans, including American-Americans," Tanabe told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser at the time. "We all served together in defense of our country."

Noah Tanabe, the grandson who posted the photo online, said he thinks about his grandfather every time he votes.

"It's hard to imagine -- after his family business is torched, his family imprisoned, and denied the opportunity to finish his college education -- he volunteered to serve. I don't know if I would have done the same thing, but we are all very proud of him," he said.

The family has been surprised and gratified by the online comments on the photo, Barbara Tanabe said.

"I think he feels like joining the Army, going to the camp, fighting in the war, and fighting discrimination -- these were all things he did so that we have this precious right to vote," she said. "For so many people to express their heartfelt tribute to my father was really, really heartwarming for us."

Several Reddit commentators asked whether Tanabe's vote would be counted if he passed away before Election Day on Nov. 6.

Glenn Takahashi, Honolulu election administrator, said absentee ballots cast by voters who later die become invalid if the state Department of Health notifies elections officials of the death before Election Day. To void a ballot when that happens, officials have to be able to sort through tens of thousands of ballots to find the one in question. This is not always practical, and so the ballot is counted if it isn't.

A similar situation arose in Honolulu four years ago when then-presidential candidate Barack Obama's grandmother died two nights before the election but after she mailed her absentee ballot. Hawaii counted her vote anyway, because the Health Department didn't receive her certificate of death before the election.

Barbara Tanabe said her father, a quiet, unassuming man, would wonder what the fuss over the photo was about. But he'd be thrilled it encouraged others to vote, she said.

"That would be the ultimate honor for him," she said.
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Old 10-23-2012, 06:54 PM   #122
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I hope someone checked to make sure he had a valid photo i d.
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Old 10-23-2012, 09:05 PM   #123
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Wow. He's lived quite a crazy life-he's been through so much.

Shame to hear of his illness, but very cool that he's still so involved in what's going on in the world . He sounds like an inspiring man.
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Old 10-24-2012, 07:21 PM   #124
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Ann Coulter, completely owned. I love it. A friend you haven't made yet, that's just so sweet.

ABC News

By COLLEEN CURRY
Oct. 24, 2012

A Special Olympics athlete with Down Syndrome has written an open letter to conservative columnist Ann Coulter, scolding her for using the word "retard" while criticizing President Obama.

The letter by John Franklin Stephens has quickly gained enormous support on the internet, but so far Coulter has not responded.

Stephens decided to write the letter Tuesday after Coulter sent a Twitter message during the presidential debates Monday saying approved of "(Mitt) Romney's decision to be kind and gentle to the retard," referring to Obama.

Coulter also used the word in a Tweet where she said that if Obama is "'the smartest guy in the room' it must be one retarded room.'"

The messages ignited a firestorm of responses from Twitter users who took issue with Coulter's use of the word as an insult.

Stephens, who gives speeches and talks for Special Olympics as a "global messenger," wrote an open letter criticizing Coulter for her choice of words and describing the struggles that people with mental handicaps face.

"Come on Ms. Coulter," he wrote. "You aren't dumb and you aren't shallow. So why are you continually using a word like the R-word as an insult?"

Stephens wondered, in his letter, whether Coulter was using the word to bully the president, as many of his fellow Special Olympians have struggled to overcome bullying and succeed anyway. He also asked whether Coulter used the word to describe someone who struggles to be thoughtful about his word, "as everyone else races from one snarky sound bite to the next."

"Finally, I wondered if you meant to degrade him as someone who is likely to receive bad health care, live in low grade housing with very little income and still manages to see life as a wonderful gift," he wrote. "Because, Ms. Coulter, that is who we are - and much, much more."

Stephens, who is 30 and has Down Syndrome, said he has struggled with the misconception that "an intellectual disability means that I am dumb and shallow." He said the term is commonly used as an insult and a way to bully people, especially when it is featured in pop culture, such as in the movie "Tropic Thunder."

"Using that word is like using a disgusting curse word," he told ABC News. "People should reconsider what they say, what hurts and what doesn't. Everybody is different."

Stephens said today that he has been flooded by support from people who also condemn Coulter's use of the word, and he hopes that the incident brings awareness to others, who may reconsider their use of the word in the future.

One person who has not reached out to Stephens about his letter is Coulter, Stephens said. He said she has acted "heartless" about her choice of words.

"She can definitely learn from it and I know that she can at least try and be much better about what words to use when she's on the news," he said. "Consider that love is the answer, not hate, not a word like retard or any other word."

To prove his point, Stephens ended his letter with an invitation to Coulter to join him and fellow athletes at the Special Olympics.

"See if you can walk away with your heart unchanged," he wrote.

Coulter's representatives did not immediately return requests for comment.

Dear Ann Coulter,

Come on Ms. Coulter, you aren’t dumb and you aren’t shallow. So why are you continually using a word like the R-word as an insult?

I’m a 30 year old man with Down syndrome who has struggled with the public’s perception that an intellectual disability means that I am dumb and shallow. I am not either of those things, but I do process information more slowly than the rest of you. In fact it has taken me all day to figure out how to respond to your use of the R-word last night.

I thought first of asking whether you meant to describe the President as someone who was bullied as a child by people like you, but rose above it to find a way to succeed in life as many of my fellow Special Olympians have.

Then I wondered if you meant to describe him as someone who has to struggle to be thoughtful about everything he says, as everyone else races from one snarkey sound bite to the next.

Finally, I wondered if you meant to degrade him as someone who is likely to receive bad health care, live in low grade housing with very little income and still manages to see life as a wonderful gift.

Because, Ms. Coulter, that is who we are – and much, much more.

After I saw your tweet, I realized you just wanted to belittle the President by linking him to people like me. You assumed that people would understand and accept that being linked to someone like me is an insult and you assumed you could get away with it and still appear on TV.

I have to wonder if you considered other hateful words but recoiled from the backlash.

Well, Ms. Coulter, you, and society, need to learn that being compared to people like me should be considered a badge of honor.

No one overcomes more than we do and still loves life so much.

Come join us someday at Special Olympics. See if you can walk away with your heart unchanged.

A friend you haven’t made yet,
John Franklin Stephens
Global Messenger
Special Olympics Virginia
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Old 10-25-2012, 08:01 PM   #125
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DEAR Mr Misogynist,

I'd like to thank you for everything you've taught me over the past 25 years.

Why, I had no idea I was so fat, ugly and stupid. I thought being a size 12 was perfectly acceptable.

But when you yelled across the newsroom, ''I want two inches off your hair and two inches off your arse'', suddenly, a light went on.

Of course! The size of my posterior is directly related to the content and credibility of the stories I'm reporting on for this network. Silly me. You're right. I'll never make it as a TV journalist.

Those wise words of yours from 1986 are still ringing in my ears: ''That's why you don't see blonde newsreaders,'' you explained patiently. ''People don't take them seriously.''

It reminded me of another sage piece of advice, from a radio boss during a job interview some years ago.

He put it simply yet eloquently: ''There's a reason why you don't hear women on commercial talkback radio,'' he said. ''No one wants to hear the whiny sound of a female voice. Us blokes get enough nagging at home!''

Really, in retrospect, it was foolish to think I was worthy of such a role.

Like all women, I only have two areas of specialisation: shoes and handbags. We all know high heels are a patriarchal construct to disempower us by constricting movement. (Oh dear. Must stop having thoughts like that. Sorry, I have no idea where that came from.)
Anyway, through some quirk of fate, I managed to land a newsreading job.

I know what you're thinking. I finally decided to speak into that flesh-coloured microphone you were always pointing in my direction.

Oddly enough, I was offered the job by a woman. Who would have thought? Initially, I was wary. You always said you'd never work for a female boss because, ''You can't trust anything that bleeds for five days and doesn't die''.

Hilarious! It's a good thing I was wearing a corset or my sides would have split.
Fortunately, there were enough blokes around to keep me on the straight and narrow.
On my first night, the station manager came down and said, ''You need to stick your tits out more''. Once again, my brain wasn't working properly.

In between the raging bushfires, the political crises and savage cuts to welfare, I'd forgotten to flirt with the camera.

A couple of years later - I'm ashamed to say this - I ''porked up'', according to one of the producers.

My new boss quickly raced out and arranged sponsorship from the local gym.

Frankly, I was unsightly. I stood out like a bull in a china shop, around those fragile lollipop ladies with their skinny bodies and massive heads.

Speaking of heads, I got a nasty shock when I looked in the mirror one day. Wrinkles around my eyes and on my forehead. Too much thinking? Surely not.

I remember you reviewing a video tape of one of my colleagues - clever girl, Walkley Award winner as I recall - and saying, ''The problems seem to be here and here,'' pointing to her ghastly crow's feet.

As it turns out, wrinkles were the least of my worries. I'd gotten myself knocked up.
I wanted to go back to work when bubby was three months old but, once again, it took a man to show me the error of my ways.

''Women should be at home with their children,'' my news director said. ''Or the fabric of society will be rent asunder.

''Anyway Trace. You're getting a bit long in the tooth. Why don't you give some of the younger girls an opportunity?''

Suddenly, all the lights went on. And it was so bright - it made your light look like a limp insipid flicker.

This is difficult for me to put into words but if I had to, it would sound a bit like this: F--- you.

F--- you, you misogynist bully with your archaic beliefs, intellect of a pygmy, and tiny dick.

The reason I am writing this letter is to thank you.

Among others - too many to mention - you lit a fire in my belly that's become an inferno and these days, I don't cop shit from anyone. When I was sacked by email after the birth of my second baby, I fought the lot of them.

I do hope you receive this correspondence. I had trouble finding a forwarding address after you lost your house due to that unfortunate sexual harassment case.

(I'm sure the bitch was asking for it.)

Yours in emancipation,

Tracey.

Tracey Spicer has worked as a television news presenter and radio broadcaster for more than 25 years.


Read more: And here's the news: My bum's got nothing to do with the story
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Old 10-25-2012, 08:05 PM   #126
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I like her.

I also like the letter from John Stephens to Ann Coulter above as well. Whether or not the people who need to hear those things will actually listen to those responses, I don't know, but it's always good to stick up for yourself and others regardless.
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Old 10-25-2012, 08:34 PM   #127
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Good article, good on her.
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Old 10-31-2012, 07:30 PM   #128
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Feel good cute animal pumpkin pics





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Old 11-01-2012, 06:00 PM   #129
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I think I love him

Don't ever change, Cory Booker.

Hurricane Sandy hit the state of New Jersey head-on when it made landfall on Monday, decimating the Jersey shoreline and knocking out power to over a million people.

In the storm's aftermath, the Newark mayor has been tweeting non-stop, offering updates on power outages, calming frazzled constituents and checking up on those in need.

And now he's inviting neighbors without power to seek refuge at his house.

On Thursday, Twitter user @my_serenelove sent a tweet to Booker, complaining about the loss of power at her home. Booker's response? Come on over.

DMC @my_serenelove 1 Nov 12

@CoryBooker I live around the corner from u on homestead. Why don't we have our power back. Half of my block does

Cory Booker



@CoryBooker

There is someone at my house now (Eric). I've got space u can relax in, charge devices & even a working DVD player. Come by @my_serenelove
1 Nov 12

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She did.

DMC @my_serenelove

At @CoryBooker house. Charging everything up. Thx.
1 Nov 12

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And then some other people came over too. Booker fed them.

Cory Booker



@CoryBooker 1 Nov 12

I'm having lunch delivered for the 12 or so of you hanging at my place RT @uniquenj1 taking u up on your offer. Chillin at your place.


Random kind people in Hoboken NJ. Might cause an overload there, but good for them

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Old 11-02-2012, 04:16 PM   #130
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Elk banished from 100 Mile Ranch B.C. after falling in love with cow - thestar.com
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Old 11-02-2012, 05:20 PM   #131
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Cory Booker sounds like an incredibly cool person. If he ever wants to run for president someday, I'd be more than okay with that.

The elk story kind of makes me sad. I get that he's posing a potential danger and everything, but...aw. Poor thing.

And speaking of animals, loved the pictures of some with pumpkins, MrsS .
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Old 11-08-2012, 01:23 PM   #132
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Turns out, Reddit is good for something.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/yourcommunity...ancy-test.html

*goes out to buy a pregnancy test*
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Old 11-12-2012, 11:07 AM   #133
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Not really a story, but a speech.

OFFICIAL Preacher Phil Snider gives interesting gay rights speech - YouTube
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Old 11-17-2012, 03:55 PM   #134
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This is not really a feel-good story, but it is a really fascinating one. I just cannot imagine living a life without pain, but the implications of this condition could one day help those who feel chronic pain.

This story, while long, is well worth a read.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/18/ma...nted=all&_r=2&
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Old 11-17-2012, 04:34 PM   #135
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoMac View Post
This is not really a feel-good story, but it is a really fascinating one. I just cannot imagine living a life without pain, but the implications of this condition could one day help those who feel chronic pain.

This story, while long, is well worth a read.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/18/ma...nted=all&_r=2&
That was a fascinating story. The feel good part was when the Blockers' started a camp for kids like Ashlyn and she met other kids just like her. That was a wise move because the condition is rare but it helped others like Ashlyn know they are not alone in the world.
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