Tag Archive: PHILADELPHIA


 

 
 
VIDEO: Police are saying a "major chain reaction" of vehicles led to multiple injuries on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
 
 

Two major pileups and smaller fender-benders involving tractor-trailers and scores of cars blocked one side of an ice-coated Pennsylvania Turnpike outside Philadelphia on Friday, injuring at least 30 people and tying up traffic for hours.

The eastbound crashes were reported just before 8:30 a.m., in the middle of rush hour and about five hours after a storm that dropped a foot of snow in the area finally moved out.

Speed restrictions put in place during the storm had been lifted at 6 a.m., but rush-hour motorists said the roadway was very slick, calling into question whether it had been adequately treated. State police also suspect sun glare might have played a role.

The accidents created a five-mile traffic jam between the Bensalem and Willow Grove exits of the state’s primary east-west highway. The jam was cleared by the middle of the afternoon, and turnpike officials reopened the roadway in both directions by 4 p.m.

Stuck motorists turned off their engines to conserve gas. One of them, Chuck Wacker, 53, of Plymouth Meeting, counted about 30 smashed-up vehicles around him.

“It’s a pretty calm atmosphere right now,” he said. “People are sharing food and water.”

He said cars were spun around, gas tanks were cracked open and glass and plastic littered the road.

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Today's Ideas and Actions | OurFuture.org

 

 

January 17, 2014

 

Earlier this month, Hawaii State representative Tom Bower (D) began walking the streets of his Waikiki district with a sledgehammer, and smashing shopping carts used by homeless people. “Disgusted” by the city’s chronic homelessness problem, Bower decided to take matters into his own hands — literally. He also took to rousing homeless people if he saw them sleeping at bus stops during the day.

Bower’s tactics were over the top, and so unpopular that he quickly declared “Mission accomplished,” and retired his sledgehammer. But Bower’s frustration with his city’s homelessness problem is just an extreme example of the frustration that has led cities to pass measures that effective deal with the homeless by criminalizing homelessness.

  • City council members in Columbia, South Carolina, concerned that the city was becoming a “magnet for homeless people,” passed an ordinance giving the homeless the option to either relocate or get arrested. The council later rescinded the ordinance, after backlash from police officers, city workers, and advocates.
  • Last year, Tampa, Florida — which had the most homeless people for a mid-sized city — passed an  ordinance allowing police officers to arrest anyone they saw sleeping in public, or “storing personal property in public.” The city followed up with a ban on panhandling downtown, and other locations around the city.
  • Philadelphia took a somewhat different approach, with a law banning the feeding of homeless people on city parkland. Religious groups objected to the ban, and announced that they would not obey it.
  • Raleigh, North Carolina took the step of asking religious groups to stop their longstanding practice of feeding the homeless in a downtown park on weekends. Religious leaders announced that they would risk arrest rather than stop.

This trend makes Utah’s accomplishment even more noteworthy. In eight years, Utah has quietly reduced homelessness by 78 percent, and is on track to end homelessness by 2015.

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Global Frackdown action: LIVE UPDATES

Published time: October 19, 2013 10:11
Edited time: October 19, 2013 21:20
People demonstrate in streets of Montelimar, southern France, on October 19, 2013, to protest against the exploitation of shale gas and oil. (AFP Photo / Jeff Pachoud)

Saturday, October 19

21:19 GMT: Protesters in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania demand: “Stop fracking in PA.”

Rallying across the Raritan River to @GovChristie

19:41 GMT:

The people are marching through the streets of Pittsburgh today for . | pic.twitter.com/5V3aRR3DZn |

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….

Frackdown Day: Worldwide protest to end shale gas extraction

RT RT

Published on Oct 19, 2013

Global Frackdown Day is on – Saturday marks a worldwide protest, uniting all activists who want to put an end to shale gas extraction. ‘Fracktivists’, as they’re called, are urging their governments to stand up to the oil and gas lobby. However, in Britain the authorities see things very differently… Prime Minister has become a vigorous advocate of the risky technique, as Laura Smith reports. So why exactly are environmentalists so concerned about this particular form of oil and gas extraction? For more on this RT is joined by Vanessa Vine – she’s an anti-fracking campaigner for Britain and Ireland Frack Free group

RT LIVE http://rt.com/on-air

Fight against Fracking: Romania villagers resist US energy giant Chevron

RT RT

Published on Oct 19, 2013

Anti-fracking protesters from all over Romania have been galvanized US energy giant Chevron’s plan to start drilling outside the village of Pungetsi. While the energy firm has Bucharest’s blessing, people have come together to take a stand against the potential health and environmental risks of hydraulic fracturing in the region.

Global Frackdown action: LIVE UPDATES http://on.rt.com/x8910f

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CBS/AP/ June 6, 2013, 2:03 AM

Rescue personnel search scene of building collapse on edge of downtown Philadelphia on June 5, 2013

Rescue personnel search scene of building collapse on edge of downtown Philadelphia on June 5, 2013 / AP

Updated 3 a.m. ET

PHILADELPHIA Searchers combing through the debris of a collapsed building and the remains of a damaged Salvation Army thrift store pulled a woman from the rubble late Wednesday, a glimmer of hope after officials said at least six people had been killed and 13 others injured.

Deputy Fire Chief Robert Coyne said early Thursday that 61-year-old Myra Plekam was pulled OUT, alert and talking to her rescuers before she was put in an ambulance and taken to a nearby hospital, where she was in critical condition.

Her condition was not immediately released.

It was a quick burst of joy and optimism among the numerous firefighters, police and others slowly and steadily digging through the debris that burst forth when a building that was being torn down collapsed with a thunderous boom Wednesday, raining bricks on the thrift store.

Earlier, a somber Mayor Michael Nutter said those who died were one man and five women but authorities still didn’t know how many people had been in the store or on the sidewalk when the accident happened.

Early reports had been that one woman had died in the Wednesday morning accident, but rescuers using buckets and their bare hands to move bricks and rubble kept working through the evening, removing body bags at night. Nutter said the city’s emergency workers had been “diligent, determined, focused” in their rescue efforts.

“If anyone else is in that building, they will find them,” he said.

One woman was pulled from the rubble of the Salvation Army thrift store two hours after the 10:45 a.m. collapse when rescuers heard her voice, city fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers said. About 40 percent of the collapse area remained to be searched, and rescuers were prepared to dig through the rubble all night looking for victims and survivors, he said.

Play Video

Aerials of building collapse in Philadelphia

“It’s a dangerous environment for our members, firefighters, our paramedics — we’re going to take our time,” Ayers said.

Survivors were taken to hospitals with mostly minor injuries, and some had been treated and released by evening.

Officials from the Department of Labor and Occupational Safety and Health Administration were at the scene.

The collapse involved an empty building that once housed a first-floor sandwich shop and apartments above. The thrift shop was on one side. The other side was an adult bookstore and theater that had been taken down within the last few months.

Several witnesses said they had been casting a wary eye on the demolition site and questioned how the workers were tackling the job. That raised questions about how closely the highly visible spot on Market Street, one of Philadelphia’s signature boulevards, was being monitored.

Roofer Patrick Glynn said he had been watching workers take down the doomed building over the past few weeks, and he said he suspected a collapse was inevitable because of the methods the workers were using.

“For weeks, they’ve been standing on the edge, knocking bricks off,” he said. “You could just see it was ready to go at any time. I knew it was going to happen.”

Rescue personnel search the scene of a building collapse in downtown Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 5, 2013.

Rescue personnel search the scene of a building collapse in downtown Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 5, 2013.

Reuters

A four-story building under demolition collapsed onto a neighboring two-story Salvation Army Thrift Store at 2140 Market Street at 10:45 a.m., trapping people under mountains of crushed concrete and splintered wood, said Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers.

In addition to those rescued, “we located two others and are in the process of extricating both of those people,” Ayers said. Those pulled from the rubble suffered minor injuries and were taken to area hospitals where they were in stable condition, he said.

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Adam Kokesh is a Political Prisoner

Daisy Luther
Activist Post

The establishment has made no secret of the fact that they are not very impressed with Adam Kokesh’s planned Open Carry March on Washington DC this coming July 4.

But yesterday the situation devolved to a new low when Kokesh was arrested for….doing nothing.

The controversial talk-radio host of Adam Vs. the Man has been made a political prisoner.

A “political prisoner” is defined as:

A person who has been imprisoned for holding or advocating dissenting political views. source

Regardless of your personal beliefs on whether marijuana should be legalized, if you believe that freedom of speech is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution, what happened at the May 18 “Smoke Down Prohibition” event in Philadelphia is a clear-cut violation of Kokesh’s rights. While other people there were actually breaking the law and smoking in an act of civil disobedience, Kokesh was not – he was simply speaking.

Adam Kokesh is being charged with resisting arrest…Check out the video – all I see is a man with his hands up (and no marijuana in those hands either). You don’t have to be an expert on the law to see that he went with the officers peacefully.


Does this mean that only popular opinions are protected by the Constitution? Does this mean that the Constitution is no longer in effect for those who disagree with the current laws? Or is this something more sinister? Perhaps an attempt to prevent Kokesh’s planned march on July 4 for occurring?

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Convicted abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell is spared death penalty

 

 

Dr. Kermit Gosnell

Dr. Kermit Gosnell is escorted to a police van upon leaving the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia after being convicted. (Yong Kim / Associated Press / May 13, 2013)

 

PHILADELPHIA — Kermit Gosnell, the abortion doctor convicted of killing three babies who were born alive in his grimy clinic, agreed Tuesday to give up his right to an appeal and now faces life in prison but will be spared a death sentence.

The 72-year-old Philadelphia doctor was found guilty Monday of first-degree murder in the deaths of the babies, who were killed with scissors.

In a case that became a flash point in the nation’s abortion debate, former clinic employees testified that Gosnell routinely performed illegal abortions past Pennsylvania’s 24-week limit, that he delivered babies who were still moving, whimpering or breathing, and that he and his assistants dispatched the newborns by “snipping” their spines, as he referred to it.

Prosecutors agreed to two life sentences without parole, and Gosnell was to be sentenced Wednesday in the death of the third baby, an involuntary manslaughter conviction in the death of a patient and hundreds of lesser counts.

Prosecutors had sought the death penalty because Gosnell killed more than one person, and his victims were especially vulnerable given their age. But Gosnell’s advanced age had made it unlikely he would ever be executed before his appeals ran out.

Gosnell has said he considered himself a pioneering inner-city doctor who helped desperate women get late-term abortions. Defense lawyer Jack McMahon said before the sentencing deal that his client’s bid for acquittal was a battle.

“The media has been overwhelmingly against him,” McMahon said. “But I think the jury listened to the evidence … and they found what they found.”

The gruesome details of Gosnell’s operation came out more than two years ago during a grand jury investigation of prescription drug trafficking. Authorities raiding Gosnell’s clinic for drugs instead found bags and bottles of fetuses, including jars of severed feet, along with bloodstained furniture, dirty medical instruments and cats roaming the premises.

 

 

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Prosecutor to Gosnell: ‘Are You Human?’

April 30, 2013
gosnell

The Women’s Medical Society abortion clinic at 3801-05 Lancaster Avenue, Philadelphia, PA. (Grand Jury Report)

(CNSNews.com) – “Are you human?” Assistant District Attorney Ed Cameron asked Kermit Gosnell during closing arguments in the abortionist’s trial on Monday.

Cameron noted that during the six-week trial, “Mr. McMahon (the defense attorney) kept asking the witnesses, are you human?” That question really should be asked of Gosnell, Cameron said, turning to look directly at the defendant: “Are you human?” he asked.

Gosnell stared right back and laughed.

“To med these women up, to stick scissors in babies necks — he’s the one in this case that doesn’t deserve to be called human,” Cameron said.

The trial of Gosnell entered its final phase on Monday, after lengthy closing arguments from defense attorney Jack McMahon and from prosecutor Cameron. Gosnell is charged with four counts of first-degree murder, for allegedly killing babies born alive during abortions by snipping their spinal cords with surgical scissors.

Cameron ended his closing argument with a plea to the jury to reach a guilty verdict. He quoted Steve Massof, an unlicensed medical graduate who worked at Gosnell’s clinic, the Women’s Medical Society in West Philadelphia:

“I felt like a fireman in hell,” Massof testified about the time he spent doing abortions late at night before Gosnell would arrive. “It was raining fetuses.”

“[Gosnell’s] the captain of that hell,” Cameron told the court. “It’s time for us to extinguish the hell he created.”

Cameron asked the jurors to “use their common sense” in determining whether the babies were born alive. Gosnell’s defense spent the morning arguing there was reasonable doubt that the four babies alleged to have been murdered were born alive.

“Why do you think there’s a hole in its head?” Cameron said.  “It was because that it was an added step to make sure that baby was dead.”

Cameron recalled clinic janitor Jim Johnson’s testimony that the clinic’s toilet was constantly clogged up.  “You all know what that’s from, that’s from babies in the toilet,” he said.

“Maybe you’ve been desensitized by this case, but just the thought of using a plunger and having an arm and a leg come up,” Cameron told the jury.  He said Gosnell had no respect for the dead, putting fetal remains in the garbage disposal, the toilet, and the freezer.

Cameron also relayed the testimony of Shanice Manning, who was only 14 or 15 years old when her mother brought her into Gosnell’s clinic for an abortion.  She did not receive the required counseling before an abortion under Pennsylvania law, nor was the 24-hour waiting period applied.

Manning had to go to the hospital after complications, and that’s where the baby was stillborn.

“What she said in the hospital when the baby was stillborn was, ‘Can I see the baby?  Can I hold it?’” Cameron said.

“That is why you have to have counseling,” he said.  “To this day she regrets what happened.”

While still at the clinic, Manning had asked Gosnell what the sex of the baby was.  “Well, if you’re a good girl, maybe I’ll tell you,” Gosnell was quoted as saying.

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Defense Attorney: Prosecution of Gosnell Is ‘Elitist, Racist’

April 29, 2013


gosnell

Dr. Kermit Gosnell, charged with 4 counts of first-degree murder, killing babies reportedly born alive at his abortion office in West Philadelphia, Pa. (AP)

(Warning: Some of the photos in this story are graphic.)

(CNSNews.com) – Defense lawyer Jack McMahon delivered his closing argument on behalf of abortionist Kermit Gosnell on Monday, accusing  prosecutors of “manipulating” the case to engage in an essentially “racist” prosecution of the man charged with four counts of first-degree murder, killing babies born alive during abortions by snipping their spinal cords with surgical scissors.

“Never have I seen the presumption of innocence so trampled on, stomped on,” said McMahon in court today, adding that the Philadelphia district attorney’s office “tried to manipulate everybody” and was pursuing an “elitist, racist prosecution.”

“Dr. Gosnell is not the only one doing abortions in Philadelphia,” McMahon said, “but he was an African American singled out for prosecution.”

“We know why he was targeted,” he said.  “If you can’t see that reality, you’re living in some sort of la-la land.”

Speaking for nearly two hours before the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, McMahon painted Gosnell as a doctor who cared for his community “providing a service” to vulnerable young girls.

Gosnell “provided a service to the community,” where people would “pay what they could” and often give paper IOU’s, McMahon said.

baby boy b

Baby Boy B, with slit neck, discovered by police at the abortion office of Dr. Kermit Gosnell, the Women’s Medical Society in West Philadelphia, Pa. (Photo: Grand Jury Report.)

“He knew what he was doing, he was giving this community health care they might not have otherwise had,” he said.

“He never turned away a desperate, troubled young lady because they didn’t have enough money,” McMahon said.

He talked about 13-  and 14-year-old “desperate young girls.”

“And who comes to help them?” McMahon asked.  “Dr. Gosnell.”

“He gave them a solution to their problem,” he said.  “They went in for a service and Dr. Gosnell got it done.”

Gosnell, 72, is facing four counts of first-degree murder for the killing of babies born alive after abortions, and a third-degree murder charge in the anesthesia-overdose death of a mother, Karnamaya Mongar, at his clinic the Women’s Medical Society in West Philadelphia.

He is also charged with infanticide, conspiracy, abortion at 24 or more weeks, theft, corruption of minors, solicitation and other related offenses.

The grand jury report presented in the case asserted that Gosnell killed “hundreds” of babies over the years, by cutting their spinal cords with scissors after they survived late-term abortions.

 

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Earth Watch Report  –  Sinkholes

Doris Jenkins sinkhole, Bethlehem Township, Pa.

13.03.2013 Landslide USA State of Pennsylvania, Bethlehem Damage level
Details

Landslide in USA on Wednesday, 13 March, 2013 at 10:06 (10:06 AM) UTC.

Description
A Pennsylvania family that evacuated from their house after a massive sinkhole opened up under their driveway is back at home Tuesday. Doris Jenkins, of Bethlehem Township, Pa., said she was back in her home Tuesday after officials oversaw excavation of the sinkhole. A 25- to 30-foot wide sinkhole, 10- to 12-feet deep, opened up under Jenkins’ driveway at about 4 a.m. Sunday, forcing her, her daughter and granddaughter out of their home. “I didn’t see anything at first because it was dark,” Jenkins said. “But when I went around the corner, I saw it caved in. I told my daughter [to] get the car off the driveway.” Township manager Howard Kutzler was unable to tell the Lehigh Express-Times if the cave-in was related to work done on a sewer line earlier that week on the same street as Jenkins’ home. Sinkholes are reportedly common in the Lehigh Valley, about 70 miles north of Philadelphia, because of its porous limestone ground.

Family forced to evacuate their home as massive sinkhole opens up in their yard

  • Sinkhole opened early Sunday morning in Bethlehem Township, Pennsylvania in resident’s driveway following sewer work
  • Hole was 30 feet wide by 12 feet deep; woman forced to evacuate
  • Comes only two weeks after Florida man was swallowed alive by sinkhole

By Beth Stebner

Mail Online

PUBLISHED: 19:52 EST, 10 March 2013 | UPDATED: 03:12 EST, 11 March 2013

A large sinkhole opened up in Bethlehem Township, Pennsylvania today following significant sewer work in the area

The sinkhole was at least 30 feet wide by 12 feet deep, and caused significant damage to houses in the neighborhood, authorities said.

News of the phenomenon comes only two weeks ago when a Florida man was swallowed up in a sinkhole that opened under his house.

kA large sinkhole opened up in the backyard of a home forcing an evacuation of the homeowners in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on Sunday

 

kNeighbors look at the sinkhole, which was more than 30 feet wide and 12 feet deep

The Morning Call newspaper of Lehigh Valley reports that while no injuries were reported, there was significant structural damage to buildings within a half a block radius of the giant hole.

It formed under the home of resident Doris Jenkins, who said that there were a few indicators that a sinkhole could be forming.

She said that while she was taking her three dogs for a walk around 4am Sunday morning, she saw an unbelievable site: ‘A big hole opening up at the end of the driveway.’

 

Fire

·kevork djansezian getty images

Today Fire USA State of Tennessee, Nashville [Nashville International Airport ] Damage level
Details

Fire in USA on Monday, 11 February, 2013 at 04:33 (04:33 AM) UTC.

Description
Two dozen passengers were evacuated from a U.S. Airways airplane at the Nashville International Airport after a small electrical fire started. The incident on Saturday afternoon involved flight No. 3411 from Philadelphia. Airport communications manager Shannon Sumrall said that a defogging system on the plane’s windshield was manufacturing and is believed to have sparked the fire. The fire was quickly extinguished and no injuries were reported. U.S. Airways spokeswoman Michelle Mohr said the plane was operated by the airline’s partner, Republic Airlines.