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Good, Bad & The Ugly

September 6, 2012
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The good

The Des Moines Women’s Rugby Club hosted its second annual Skirts in the Dirt charity prom dress rugby tournament on Aug. 25 in West Des Moines. Four women’s teams including Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Iowa State University and Wayne State University as well as four men’s teams, Des Moines, Metropolis, Wayne State University and Palmer College, competed in the tournament with proceeds benefiting the Iowa Coalition Against Domestic Violence. The event pokes fun at the stereotype that women should be girly, stylish and weak. For the sake of violence prevention, the rugby teams demonstrated how women can be as assertive, strong and powerful, despite the fact that one in four women experience domestic violence in their lifetime. Here’s to changing that any way we can.

The Des Moines Art Center (DMAC) recently received a grant award of $25,000 from DuPont Pioneer in support of its Free Admission Program. Thanks to generous funders like Pioneer, more than 400,000 people participated in DMAC’s activities both on- and off-site last year. This generous gift makes the Art Center poised to surpass that record in 2012 and enable the museum to further advance its mission of offering educational opportunities through its collections and programs. It’s programs like this that enrich the culture and quality of life in the Des Moines area.

The bad

An Ohio family is suing a pharmaceutical manufacturer after its generic drug allegedly caused a fatal reaction to a loved one. Nearly 80 percent of all prescriptions in the United States are filled with generic drugs, and a U.S. Supreme Court decision a year ago makes it almost impossible to sue generic-drug manufacturers that fail to provide adequate warnings of a drug’s dangers. Across the nation, dozens of lawsuits against manufacturers of generic drugs have been dismissed because of the high court ruling. But a new proposal would change that law. Proposed legislation now in Congress (SB 2295 and HR 4384) would require makers of generics to update their warning labels when a new safety issue arises. Insurance companies say generic drugs save money and contain the same active ingredients as the brand names, but in leiu of cases like this, it’s probably wise to ask your pharmacist before buying.

How can you put a price on your daughter’s life? The family of Tonya Reaves recently filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Planned Parenthood of Illinois for $120,000 in compensation after the 24-year-old died from an alleged “botched abortion” (Cityview’s Good-Bad-Ugly, Aug. 2). The suit claims Reaves died due to negligence, and Reaves’ mother, Dorsey Johns, says Planned Parenthood “carelessly performed” Reaves’ abortion on July 20 and failed to properly monitor her afterwards. This gravely unfortunate case could set a controversial precedent over the abortion issue for years to come.

The ugly

As if losing an appendage wasn’t enough punishment, an Everglades airboat operator in Florida was also charged with illegally feeding the alligator that bit off his right hand, according to news reports. Wallace Weatherholt, 63, works for Captain Doug’s Small Airport Tours in Everglades City. He was dangling a fish over the surface of the water to entertain the tourists when a nine-foot-long alligator lunged for the fish and bit off his right hand at the wrist. After the state wildlife officers tracked and killed the gator, they found Weatherholt’s hand in the reptile’s stomach. Unfortunately for the Weatherholt, doctors were unable to reattach it, and state police arrested him for the misdemeanor crime. Dangling a fish over the water in the Everglades? What did he think was going to happen?

A 35-year-old man was arrested in Dallas, Texas, after crashing his pickup truck into a mall. By the time police arrived, they found Arthur Walker in the buff, attempting to try on some clothes prior to the store opening. Police apprehended him inside the mall after he drove his Dodge pickup through the double-glass doors, demolished several kiosks and crashed through the roll-down gate of a Champs Sports store. They found him putting on socks and a new pair of Nike Jordan sneakers, but that’s as far as he got before he was also putting on handcuffs. Paramedics took him to the hospital for evaluation before he was transferred to the local lockup on a burglary charge. “My assessment is he wasn’t in his right mind,” said Sgt. Elliott Forge. Ya think? CV

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