An Inclusive Litany


Ken Bergstrom asked the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection for permission to build another pond on his property in Sunderland, Red-Wing Meadow Farm. The department refused him permission because the pond would be in a wetland area. Besides farming, Bergstrom raises trout in several ponds on the property. According to the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act, farming and fishing are allowed on wetlands. But the department says changing from one use to the other, which Bergstrom proposes, is not allowed. "There is no logic" to the policy, he complains.

Jacque Evans sued the Georgia Department of Human Resources and prison guard Robert Neal for physical injuries sustained during his attempted escape from a juvenile detention facility. Evans, 16 at the time, was detained for automobile theft and a previous escape. According to the suit, he was allowed to move freely about "despite the fact that he was a designated escape risk who was supposed to be confined in a restricted area." He was also "negligently permitted" to wear street clothes, making it easier to escape.

When Evans and another youth ran for the fence, Neal chased Evans and grabbed his foot as he prepared to jump from the top of the fence. Evans fell head first to the ground and was paralyzed by the fall. Evans's lawyer says Evans had escaped from Neal before, and that Evans "thought [Neal] would just let him go and catch him later... He had no idea he was in danger" when he climbed the fence.

In July 1990, after National Endowment for the Arts chairman John Frohnmayer claimed that the NEA had never funded performance artist Annie Sprinkle, an ex-prostitute and self-proclaimed "postporn modernist," documents were found proving that a $60,000 grant had indeed funded Sprinkle's 12 performances at the Kitchen Theater in New York. In these performances, Sprinkle used dildos to simulate oral sodomy on stage and invited audience members to use a flashlight to peer up her vagina.

After rejecting Karen Finley for a grant the same month, the NEA gave grants to several theaters with the knowledge that she would perform there with NEA funds. Finley's performances feature her smearing her bare chest with chocolate syrup and alfalfa sprouts (representing sperm) to express "rage against sexual violence and women's objectification."

Tim Miller and Holly Hughes, two other performance artists, sued the NEA for denying them grants, claiming their First Amendment rights to free expression were violated. A solo performance by Hughes, "World Without End," included the artist's putting her hand up her vagina to show how her mother imparted the "secret meaning of life." The NEA gave Hughes a $15,500 playwriting fellowship to finish writing the very play that it refused her a grant to perform.

After Tom and Doris Dodd bought 40 acres of property in Hood River, Oregon, the Hood River County Planning Commission refused them permission to build their retirement home. The commission had re-zoned the area as "forest land"—where houses may not be built because they increase the risk of fire, a rule that applies only to parcels 40 acres or over. The minimum size available to the Dodds was 40 acres. Tom Dodd wonders why the commission doesn't consider homes built on less than 40 acres a hazard, "but over 40 it's going to burn down?"

Two sisters were convicted in Rexburg, Idaho, on charges stemming from an attempt to bring popcorn from one movie theater into another. The case eventually involved the FBI.


After charges were dropped against several male Vassar students accused of date rape, Catherine Comins, the Assistant Dean of Student Life, said: "Men who are unjustly accused of rape can sometimes gain from the experience." She elaborated, "They have a lot of pain, but it is not a pain that I would necessarily have spared them. I think it ideally initiates a process of self-exploration. 'How do I see women?' 'If I did not violate her, could I have?' 'Do I have the potential to do what they say I did?' These are good questions."

[Ed.: Comins also noted that "To use the word [rape] carefully would be to be careful for the sake of the violator, and the survivors don't care a hoot about him."]


The Mendocino Beacon, September 19, 1991, in a piece by Tony Miksak, owner of the Gallery Bookshop and Bookwinkle's:
Publishers have discovered that plastic "peanuts" are a quick and cheap way to fill in the gaps around books before shipping... Some mornings I stand on the Kasten Street sidewalk listening to the surf and watching the odd peanut or two blow down the street toward the Mendecino Bay. I wonder if a Brown Pelican, California Gull, Brandt's Cormorant, Common Loon, Great Blue Heron, Coot, Surf Scoter, Black Turnstone, Killdeer, Oystercatcher, Grebe, Phalarope, Sandpiper Curlew, Godwit, Clapper Rail or Wandering Tattler may decide to try one of those crusty plastic things for breakfast.

After Texas state Representative Larry Evans died, his voting light blinked for roll call votes for several hours. He continued to vote until police announced they had discovered his corpse.

Acting on an anonymous tip, drug agents from the Campbell County, Virginia, sheriff's department seized eight seedlings from Doug Mitchell's front porch. Lab tests determined that the plants were Japanese dwarf maples. The lab tests also destroyed the plants.

According to a memo from cafeteria managers in the Treasury Department building, home to the IRS, of 2,040 individual pieces of silverware available, some 1,430 (70 percent) were missing and presumed stolen.

Lloyd Manson planned to build a new home on a lot he purchased in Santa Cruz, California. But arborists told him that the towering eucalyptus trees on the property were likely to topple onto his house during a wind storm. So Manson decided to cut down the trees. However, people who live near the lot got an injunction forbidding Manson from cutting the trees. As Gillian Greensite, a leader of the fight to keep the trees, explained, "We live in a community, and trees are part of that community."

A new turn in the outing craze: the Bald Urban Liberation Brigade of New York City is posting fliers of celebrities who secretly wear toupees.

Letter to the editor, the New York Times, October 2, 1991:
"Bikes for 2: Romantic, Now Rugged" (Business Day, Sept. 7) reports that the bicycle built for two is coming back into style. Then you state:

"Tandems, as they are known by the cycling savvy, never really went away. But the last few years have seen a spurt of growth, thanks in large part to family-oriented fitness enthusiasts, graying baby boomers and some new technology borrowed from mountain bikes."

You could have mentioned that nowhere is male chauvinism more arrogant, or female subservience more pitiful, than on the tandem bike.

Common sense would dictate that the shorter person sit up front and the taller person in back, where he or she could look over the driver's shoulder. That is not what happens.

The male, who is almost always the taller, sits up front at the controls. In their expedition into the great outdoors the man's share is the great outdoors and the woman's share is 12 square inches of the noble man's back.

—Daniel Farber
Worcester, Massachusetts

[Ed.: I asked a bike store owner about this, and he said that, due to the design of the tandem bike, it always makes for an easier ride when the "stronger" person sits up front.]


The American Civil Liberties Union referred to a proposal to install cameras in unmanned toll booths as "creeping fascism."

President Bush's 1991 crime bill imposes the death penalty for certain violent crimes. On the list: assassinating the president, hijacking an airliner, and murdering a federal poultry inspector.

In New York City, on the afternoon Joel Steinberg was arrested for beating his six-year-old illegally adopted daughter, Lisa, his landlord received dozens of phone calls inquiring whether, if the little girl died, Steinberg's rent-controlled apartment would become available.

Senator Joseph Biden at the Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Clarence Thomas, quoted verbatim by the Wall Street Journal, September 12, 1991:
Okay, I'm beginning to understand. So, natural law informed the notion of liberty. You and I have both read—because of our backgrounds, I suspect—we've both read—I won't get into Aquinas and Augustine and all that, but Locke looked back to the concept of natural law as an evolving notion. Montesquieu talked about it. Jefferson understood it. He was in Paris. He was probably the only one that fully understood it. But others who were there writing the Constitution, they talked about it, they had what they wrote—both the Declaration, as you say, in other places and in the Constitution—they reduced these broad notions of natural law—the natural rights of man to this document.

The Washington Post, September 18, 1991:
Nine days before the [National Endowment for the Arts] advisory council met, the review panel was reconvened by telephone. Frohnmayer explained that "the record was not as complete as it might otherwise be" with respect to the Hughes, Miller and Fleck grants and said he wanted to deal with "the artistic issues."

The panelists praised all three artists and again voted unanimously to award the grants. "Though there may be backlashes and pain as a result of this, I really feel it's extremely important that we embrace the arts... We mustn't be afraid," one unidentified panelist said.

"Let me ask the very crass and difficult political question," Frohnmayer said. "What am I going to say when one of our critics comes in... and says, 'Geez, they funded a guy who whizzes onstage?' "

A panelist answered: "Who knows? Who cares? They're good."

In Devil's Lake, North Dakota, Christian fundamentalists are demanding that Central High School drop its decades-old nickname, the Satans.


On June 27, 1991, a New Jersey appellate court ruled that a town could deny permission to build a subdivision even though a developer's application met all the town's standards, largely because the planning board felt that the development's layout was not the most attractive possible.


Some budget items from 1991:

  • $300,000 to the National Peanut Lab.
  • $550,000 for Monk seal research.
  • $800,000 for research on geese.
  • $94,000 for apple research.
  • $1.8 million for berry research.
  • $1.7 million for potato research, plus $250,000 to study North Dakota potatoes.
  • $1.3 million for sweet potato research.
  • $1.7 million for beef research.
  • $140,000 for research on swine.
  • $2.8 million for peach research, plus $192,000 to study South Carolina peaches.
  • $173,000 to study Malaysian family economics.
  • $293,000 to study Swedish twins.
  • $467,000 to study Asians.
  • $132,000 to study "facial reactions to stimuli."
  • $150,000 to study recyclable fishing nets.
  • $500,000 to study long distance communication in Kentucky.
  • $759,000 to the Rice Research Center.
  • $5 million for the "American Salmon Summit."
  • $1.5 million for the Center for Pacific Rim Studies.
  • $1.8 million (1991) and $1.5 million (1992) to the National Pig Research Facility.
  • $3 billion to build a rocket plant that NASA does not want.
  • $70,000 for HUD television studios that no one uses.
  • $3.5 million for a nuclear weapons contractor luxury fund.
  • $350,000 for the House beauty salon.
  • $20 million to beautify stockyards in Fort Worth, Texas.
  • $116 million to cut timber to be sold at a loss.
  • $2.5 million (1991) and $800,000 (1992) for Florida bike paths.
  • $800,000 for North Dakota highway beatification.
  • $10 million for a second monument to a dead president who requested that no monuments ever be erected in his honor.
  • $3.5 million for a second visitor center for the Lyndon B. Johnson Historic Park.
  • $2 million for two theater restorations in Savannah, Georgia.
  • $2 million for two marketplace restorations in Toledo, Ohio.
  • $3,000 reimbursed to the office of Joe Kennedy (D-MA) by the House Post Office even though the mail he sent out cost his office nothing.
  • $2 million to renovate the seating area for House members in the Congressional restaurant, where full dinners cost as little as $5.
  • $250,000 to study the best position for TV lighting in the senate meeting rooms.
  • $201,000 to refurbish 13 buildings at Fort Knox, Kentucky, that had already been slated for demolition.
  • $58,276 to supply Jamaican farmers with a machine that sorts red peas, which don't grow in Jamaica.
  • $127 million for grain silos and water-pumping stations in Egypt, where there is not enough electrical capacity to run them.
  • $15 million to Dartmouth College as part of a job-creation scheme. 39 jobs were "created" at a cost of $384,615 apiece.
  • $3 billion for the Community Development Block Program—the anti-poverty program through which 56 of the 60 wealthiest communities received taxpayer money, including Palm Springs, Newport Beach, and Palo Alto.
  • $1.1 million to Tyson Chicken to advertise overseas.
  • $5 million to Gallo Wines to advertise overseas.
  • $3 million to Pillsbury to advertise overseas.
  • $10 million to Sunkist to advertise overseas.
  • $3.1 million to advertise Kentucky bourbon overseas.
  • $394,000 to advertise American bull semen overseas.

New York magazine, July 29, 1991:
Joe Papp's upcoming production of A Midsummer Night's Dream, which came under criticism when it was revealed that the play would be performed in Portuguese, is destined to cause more controversy: Some of the actors will appear nude.

Many of the female characters are topless, the men sometimes wear costumes that are little more than G-strings, and, in one scene, Titania wears nothing at all. It would mark the first time in the 30-year history of the Central Park's Delacorte Theater that Shakespeare was presented in the buff. The play, performed by the Brazilian theater company Teatro do Ornitorrinco, has its world premiere on July 30.

"The director conceived it with the idea that most people here do not understand Portuguese," says New York Shakespeare Festival spokesman Richard Kornberg. "With that in mind he has made the production shorter and highlighted the visual qualities. Even though the language might be a problem, nudity is international."

Washington D.C. district police ticketed a car at least once and perhaps as many as three times during a 15-hour period. That's not unusual; the car was in a no-parking zone. What was unusual is that the car's engine was idling and a corpse shot in the head was in the rear seat. Only after a passerby noticed the corpse and notified police did officers suspect anything was wrong.

In Massachusetts, the mother of a boy who died after crashing a car he stole is suing General Motors and Conrail. The suit claims that the defendants or their agents negligently left the keys in a car in an auto freight yard, and that they "knew or should have known" that people might trespass at the yard because six weeks before stealing the car involved in the crash, the boy had stolen another car from the same yard.

In Kewanee, Illinois, Michael Runyon escaped certain death when his lawn mower stalled on a railroad track and was hit by an oncoming freight train. Runyon, who had been using his five-horsepower riding mower since his license was suspended five years ago, has been charged with drunk driving. Runyon said that he had consumed enough beer to "loosen" himself up at the moment of impact, and thus avoided injury.


High school senior Yat-pang Au was surprised to have been denied admission to attend the University of California at Berkeley. He maintained a straight A average, and had SAT scores in the 98th percentile at 1,340. He ran a Junior Achievement company, won varsity letters in cross country and track, and was elected to the student council and school Supreme Court. He won seven scholarships, including prizes from the National Society of Professional Engineers, Bank of America Laboratory Science, and Santa Clara County Young Businessman of the Year club. His school's vice principal described him as "one of the finest students I've ever encountered, and a real gentleman too." While at first Yat-pang thought that he was denied admission because the University's standards were too high even for him, he later found that ten other students from his high school were accepted, students with lower test scores and grades, but who were not Asian.

[Ed.: While Asians are often discriminated against in the admissions process, universities often include their grades when boasting of "minority" achievement.]

Sandra Wong, in the July 1991 Monthly Planet, a publication of the Santa Cruz County Nuclear Weapons Freeze:
I am writing this letter because I believe the time has come for women as a gender to fully take on equal rights and also take some of the blame for the current water crisis that has been a part of our daily lives for the last five years. Many people, in fact most people who read this, will think that I am off my rocker, but if you will bear with me (males), and if you try this (females), we will save untold gallons of water, expedite the process and create a more sanitary environment.

What I am talking about is the fact that every time a woman uses the restroom she flushes the toilet using between five and eight gallons of water as opposed to every time a man uses a urinal he uses only a gallon or two. What I am proposing is that women begin using the urinals that are already equipped in the dual-sex restrooms in restaurants, nightclubs, school dormitories and other places where they might be found, and that the private sector begin installing them in existing female restrooms.

The majority of the population feels that this is absolutely impossible, a female standing to urinate, but in reality, it is a rather easy thing to do. Almost every woman on earth at some time has wished she could accomplish this. I, myself, have been doing it since my mother taught it to me as an alternative to "hovering" when I was about five years old. You do not need devices such as a funnel and no artificial prosthetic apparatus either. Your God-given anatomy is all you need.


State Senator James West introduced a bill in the Washington state legislature that would have made sexual intercourse illegal for unmarried teens under 18. The legislature's senate health care and corrections committee gave the restrictive bill serious consideration as an AIDS-prevention measure.

In Martinez, California, crew members of a U.S. Navy train that severed an antiwar protester's legs in 1987 sued him, alleging post-traumatic stress disorder. The protester went on to win a settlement in his own suit against the government, after he purposefully put his body in front of the train at a distance at which it was physically impossible for it to stop in time to avoid injuring him.

In Los Angeles, at least three police officers who witnessed the notorious videotaped beating of Rodney King have filed for worker's compensation, claiming that they suffered anxiety and stress.


The owner of a thirty-six-unit apartment building in Milwaukee wanted very much to create a drug-free environment, evicting ten tenants suspected of drug use, giving a master key to local beat cops, forwarding tips to the police, and hiring two security firms to patrol the building. The city responded by seizing the property because, as Milwaukee city attorney David Stanosz declared, "Once a property develops a reputation as a place to buy drugs, the only way to fix that is to leave it totally vacant for a number of months. This landlord doesn't want to do that." The owner had encouraged the police to send undercover agents into the building, but the police claimed they were too short of officers.


Asked whether the $400 a month he paid for a six-room rent-controlled apartment on New York's swanky Central Park South was a fair price, tobacco-store owner Nat Sherman replied, "I use the apartment so little, that I think it's fair."

Sting, the political conscience of rock and roll and father of five children, told Rolling Stone, "We have too many people—we have to use birth control."

Donna Minkowitz reports from the floor of the National Lesbian Conference in the Village Voice, May 21, 1991:
Some things have changed in the lesbian world: political purism apparently no longer extends to the bedroom. The first of four scheduled workshops celebrating s&m was one of the best-attended and least tense events, attracting a multiracial crowd of 350 with lots of self-identified incest survivors. When a muscular, gorgeous 20-year-old complained that "it's not enough to learn about s&m from books, I need experience!" 349 women looked blissful. "Do I hear her calling for teachers?! With shoulders like that, you're not gonna have any problem," one called out soothingly. Most postmodern line from the conference, also from the s&m workshop: "A beating that I had two years ago is what enabled me to get through Saudi Arabia, because it taught me I could withstand pain."

After a few days, many of us wished we'd had a similar preparatory experience. Censorship started on Day Two, when a local photographer and a cartoonist handed out 300 copies of a drawing chiding the policy prohibiting the use of flash cameras. (Conference organizers claim they can cause seizures in epileptics.)

The Washington Post, June 22, 1991:
Minutes into "Sex/Love/Stories," Tim Miller's solo program at Dance Place last weekend, it's abundantly clear why this ardent and unshackled performance artist was denied a National Endowment for the Arts grant by NEA Chairman John Frohnmayer and his advisory council.

"Sex!" Miller bellows, entering from the rear of the space. "Love!" Then, in a quieter voice: "War ... AIDS ..." With these big, resonant, scary words, he offers up an outline of all that is to come bursting forth from his oh-so-clever mouth... He yanks down his pants and has a very frank, emotionally charged discussion with his bared anatomy about the importance of celebrating the flesh, especially in the midst of disease and censorship and death.


In 1991, the city of Laguna Beach, California, prosecuted a woman because the picket fence she built in front of her house was six inches too high. The city zoning board targeted the woman even though twenty of her neighbors signed a letter stating that they had no objection to her fence and even though there were forty other houses in her neighborhood that also had fences higher than the four-foot limit. (The zoning rule had been put into effect ten years before, dictating that new fences had to be significantly lower than existing fences.)


When minority and women employees sued Lucky Stores for discrimination, they discovered that notes had been taken during mandatory sensitivity workshops. Managers had been asked to think of negative stereotypes and discuss them, which they did. Judge Marilyn Hall Patel of the federal court in San Francisco ruled that records of these sessions could be used in court as evidence of bias.

Plainclothes police officers in Miramar, Florida, arrested a grandmother of ten for selling a Playboy magazine to two 16-year-olds. Elaine Ott, a convenience store clerk, was handcuffed, taken to jail, strip searched, and placed overnight in a cell with other felons. After posting bail for his wife, Mr. Ott opened the convenience store and was robbed at gunpoint.


The following notice was posted in a Colorado church:
12:00 NOON—Cocaine Anonymous, Main Floor
5:30 P.M.—Survivors of Incest, Main Floor
6:00 P.M.—Al-Anon, 2nd Floor
6:00 P.M.—Alcoholics Anonymous, Basement

5:30 P.M.—Debtors Anonymous, Basement
6:30 P.M.—Codependents of Sex Addicts Anonymous, 2nd Floor
7:00 P.M.—Adult Children of Alcoholics, 2nd Floor
8:00 P.M.—Alcoholics Anonymous, Basement
8:00 P.M.—Al-Anon, 2nd Floor
8:00 P.M.—Alateen, Basement
8:00 P.M.—Cocaine Anonymous

8:00 P.M.—Survivors of Incest Anonymous, Basement

5:30 P.M.—Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous, Basement
7:30 P.M.—Adult Children of Alcoholics, 2nd Floor
8:00 P.M.—Cocaine Anonymous, Main Floor

7:00 P.M.—Codependents of Sex Addicts Anonymous, 2nd Floor
7:00 P.M.—Women's Cocaine Anonymous, 2nd Floor

5:30 P.M.—Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous, Basement
5:45 P.M.—Adult Overeaters Anonymous, Main Floor
7:30 P.M.—Codependents Anonymous
7:30 P.M.—Adult Children of Alcoholics, 2nd Floor
8:00 P.M.—Cocaine Anonymous, Main Floor

10:00 A.M.—Adult Children of Alcoholics, Main Floor
12:00 NOON—Self-Abusers Anonymous, 2nd Floor


After years of research, the Drug Enforcement Agency claims to have come up with a scientifically valid profile of the typical drug carrier. The DEA is loath to reveal the traits that will lead them to search someone, but Mother Jones scoured court documents and found that the following forms of behavior have triggered actual searches: carrying new suitcases, carrying old suitcases, appearing nervous, appearing calm, buying a round-trip ticket, buying a one-way ticket, traveling alone, traveling with a companion, deplaning from the front of the airplane, deplaning from the middle of the plane, and deplaning from the rear of the plane. Try not to be so obvious!

In 1984, the New York Department of Housing Preservation and Development announced that it would fill the windows of thousands of vacant, city-owned apartments with pictures of flower pots and curtains in order to make it appear that people were living in them. As Anthony Gliedman, former Commissioner of the Department, commented, "appearance is reality."

The National Coalition on Television Violence asked George Bush to remove Arnold Schwartzenegger as chairman of the President's Council on Physical Fitness. The group charges that Schwartzenegger is an inappropriate role model because his films promote violence. Arnold responded, "They're just a bunch of girly men who are jealous of my pumpitude."

In San Francisco, Latino firemen have demanded that the Civil Service Commission declare Frank Cercos—who finished third on a test for battalion chief—ineligible for affirmative action benefits. Cercos is of Spanish descent but is not Mexican-American. The firefighters want the definition of Hispanic changed to include only those of Mexican or other Latin American ancestry.

Mike Webel owns a business in Chicago that employs 26 people. Twenty-one of his employees are Latino; five are black. So he didn't worry when the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission asked to see his records. He should have. The EEOC told him that based on their formulas, he should be employing 8.45 blacks. The agency has ordered him to "spend $10,000 on newspaper ads to find black people who didn't work for me so I can pay them $123,000 for not working for me."

Following a lawsuit by Jeremy Rifkin's Foundation on Economic Trends, the EPA has allocated funds to measure how much methane gas flatulent cows pump into the atmosphere. The foundation contends that methane emitted by livestock contributes to global warming. In other words, federal officials literally go out in the field and measure how much a cow is farting.


A Georgia man who lost his job after assaulting his supervisor went to court to get his job back, saying that he suffered from a "maladaptive reaction to psychological stressor" condition and should therefore be considered handicapped.

Stanford's "Safe Sex Explorer's Action Packed Starter Kit Handbook" advises, "USE CONDOMS FOR F***ING: with several partners, ALWAYS CLEAN UP AND CHANGE RUBBERS BEFORE GOING FROM ONE PERSON TO ANOTHER."

Canadian authorities blamed the rising price of cigarettes (about $7 a carton because of higher taxes imposed as part of the government's effort to curb smoking) for the rash of cars and trucks being crashed through the doors of convenience stores. The occupants leap out, grab as many cartons of cigarettes as they can, jump back in the vehicles, and flee.

The family of Cynthia Barrientos has filed a product-liability suit against Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Barrientos died in 1986 from injuries received when a Panasonic television (manufactured by Matsushita) exploded. At the time of the accident, Barrientos was in the home of neighbors who were arguing. During the argument, one of the neighbors threw a bottle of cologne that hit the TV, breaking the picture tube and spilling ethyl alcohol into the tube. The alcohol was ignited by the electricity in the tube. The suit alleges that the TV was defectively designed and unreasonably dangerous. Matsushita claims that this set of circumstances was "bizarre" and couldn't reasonably be anticipated.


Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan told the Washington Post that he had been carried up into space by a UFO.

Los Angeles police chief Daryl F. Gates told the Senate Judiciary Committee that casual users of marijuana and cocaine "ought to be taken out and shot."

Literary critic Henry Louis Gates, Jr., writing on the lyrics of the rap group 2 Live Crew in the New York Times, said "Their sexism is so flagrant... that it almost cancels itself out. In this, it recalls the inter-sexual jousting in Zola Neale Hurston's novels."

When testifying as an expert witness on behalf of the rappers at their obscenity trial, Gates delicately explained to the court the difference between mere vulgarity and a double entendre. Gates, a professor with a doctorate in English literature, offered as an example "Shakespeare's 'My love is like a red, red rose.' " The line he quoted actually came from the Scottish poet Robert Burns.

Daniel Rakowitz, accused of murdering his girlfriend and boiling her body parts, asked a New York judge to impanel a jury of marijuana smokers so he "could get a fair trial." "I just want everybody in New York City and the world to be happy and have a smile on their faces," he explained. "If everybody smoked marijuana, there would be no violence in the world."

Congress approved a $500,000 appropriation for renovating the birthplace of Lawrence Welk.

A correction that appeared in the Fresno Bee, July 21, 1990:
An item in Thursday's Nation Digest about the Massachusetts budget crisis made reference to new taxes that will help put Massachusetts "back in the African-American." The item should have said "back in the black."