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March 11, 2010 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2010-03-11

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* The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Thursday, March 11, 2010 - 3A

NEWS BRIEFS
MARQUETTE, Mich.
*Michigan Bishop up
for canonization
The Catholic Church is taking
a step toward canonizing Bishop
Frederic Baraga (BARE'-uh-guh),
who converted Indians in the upper
Great Lakes region to Christianity
inthe 1800s.
The Catholic Diocese of Mar-
quette announced an investigation
yesterday of whether a possible
medical miracle in 2006 should be
attributed to Baraga's intercession.
Bishop Alexander K. Sample tells
The Mining Journal of Marquette if
a tribunal verifies the miracle, Bish-
op will get the title "Blessed." To
be declared a saint, he'd have to be
credited with a second posthumous
miracle.
Baraga is known as the "snow-
shoe priest." He spent 23 years
among Indians and settlers on
Lakes Michigan and Superior and
became the Marquette diocese's
firstbishop in 1857.
LOS ANGELES
Postal worker
reassigned after sex
crime conviction
A letter carrier who is a regis-
tered sex offender has been reas-
signed after concerns were raised
that he was delivering mail in a San
Diego suburb with many children,
a Postal Service spokeswoman said
yesterday.
Dana Kennette, 53, is now in a job
that does not deal with the public,
service spokeswoman Eva Jack-
son said. "We've taken him off his
route," she said.
Kennette had been delivering
mail in the Rancho Bernardo area of
San Diego, where he lives.
According to the Megan's Law
Web site, he was convicted of lewd
or lascivious acts on a child under
14. The circumstances, location and
date of the offense were not listed. A
request for background on the case
was pending with the state Depart-
ment of Corrections and Rehabilita-
tion.
JACKSON, Miss.
Girl's demand to
take girlfriend as
date cancels prom
The prom's off at a northern Mis-
sissippi school after a lesbian stu-
dent demanded she be allowed to
bring her girlfriend.
The American Civil Liber-
ties Union had demanded that
the Itawamba County school dis-
trict allow 18-year-old Constance
* McMillen to attend with her date.
A school board statement yester-
day announced the district wouldn't
host the April 2 prom at Itawamba
CountyAgricultural High School.
McMillen wanted to escort her
girlfriend, who is also a student.
McMillen also was denied permis-
sion to wear atuxedo.
A school district policy requires
that dates be of the opposite sex.
The district's statement never
mentioned McMillen's request. But

officials said the change was made
due to recent distractions. District
officials say they hope private citi-
zens will host aprom.
HAVANA, Cuba
* Cuba to endorse
future sex changes
Looking in the mirror used to
make Yiliam Gonzalez sick to her
stomach.
"t would see myself, and mybody
didn't match who I was," said the
28-year-old wedding pianist, who
went by William before receiving a
sex change under Cuba's universal
health care system.
Gonzalez is livingproofofasmall
but remarkable transformation for
the rugged revolution of Fidel Cas-
tro, CheGuevara and a band of ever-
macho, bearded rebels, who long
punished gays and transsexuals -
but now are paying for sex changes.
Standing six feet (183 centime-
ters) tall, with shoulder-lengthblond
hair, heavy makeup and an ID card
still bearing a man's name, Gonzalez
underwent the procedure in 2008.
She was one of eight Cubans to do
so through a program begun in 1988
- then suspended for two decades,
after many complained the commu-
nist government had better ways to
spend its scarce resources.
The operations have begun
anew under President Raul Cas-
tro's daughter Mariela, Cuba's top
gay-rights activist, and 22 more
transsexuals are waiting to have it
performed.
-Compiled from
Daily wire reports

Reports of Prius
problems climb

NEW YORK (AP) - Reports of
sudden acceleration in the Toyota
Prius have spiked across the coun-
try. But that doesn't mean there's
an epidemic of bad gas pedals in
the popular hybrid.
Experts on consumer psy-
chology say the relentless nega-
tive media attention Toyota has
received since the fall makes it
much more likely that drivers will
mistake anything unexpected
- or even a misplaced foot - for
actual danger.
"When people expectproblems,
they're more likely to find them,"
said Lars Perner, a professor of
clinical marketing at Marshall
School of Business at University of
Southern California.
In just the first 10 weeks of this

year, 272 complaints have been
filed nationwide for speed control
problems with the Prius, accord-
ing to an Associated Press analysis
of unverified complaints received
by the National Highway Traffic
Safety Administration.
By comparison, only 74 com-
plaints were filed in all of last
year, and just eight the year
before that.
For problems with the brakes,
rather than the gas, the figures
are even more stark: 1,816 filed so
far this year versus just 90 in all of
2009 and fewer than 20 in every
other year of the last decade. Toy-
ota recalled 440,000 Priuses on
Feb. 8 because its antilock brakes
seemed to fail momentarily on
bumpy roads.

Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, president of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government, talks during a news conference in central
London, yesterday where he was seeking support for his government.
Food aid unseen by
starved Somalians

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NT. study reveals people they are probing to provide
protection.
f of aid is being The U.N. diplomat told The
Associated Press that "a signifi-
eived by crooked cant diversion" of food delivered
by the U.N. food program is going
contractors to cartels that were selling it ille-.
gally, according to the report by
ITED NATIONS (AP) -Up the panel of experts monitoring
the food aid intended for the U.N. sanctions against Somalia.
as ofhungry people in Soma- The findings were first report-
eing diverted to corruptcon- ed by The New York Times on
s, radical Islamic militants Tuesday.
cal U.N. workers, according Although WFP contracts are
N. Security Council report. supposed to be subject to open
report blames the problem tender and competitive bidding,
proper food distribution by "in practice the system offers little
N. World Food Program in or no scope for genuine competi-
ican nation, which has been tion," the diplomat quoted the
d by fighting and humani- report as saying.
suffering for nearly two The transportation contracts,
s, according to a U.N. dip- with a budget of $200 million,
The diplomat spoke on con- constitute the single most impor-
of anonymity because the tant source of revenue in Somalia,
has not yet been released. the diplomat quoted the report as
als on U.N. Secretary-Gen- saying.
an Ki-moon to authorize an "Preliminary investigations by
ndent investigation of the the monitoring group indicate the
based food agency's opera- existence of a de facto cartel char-
Somalia. acterized by irregular procedures
ause of the instability in in the awarding of contracts by the
ia, transporters must truck WFP Somalia Country Office, dis-
f food through roadblocks criminatory practices, and prefer-
d by a bewildering array of ential treatment," the report was
s, insurgents and bandits. quoted as saying.
ppings and executions are "On account of their con-
on and the insecurity makes tracts with WFP, these men have
cult for senior U.N. officials become some of the wealthiest in
el to the country to check Somalia," it was quoted as saying.
rocedures. Investigators Some 3.7 million people in
end up relying on the same Somalia - nearly half of the pop-

ulation - need aid. Earlier this
year, the country's main extrem-
ist Islamic group, al-Shabab, said
it would prohibit WFP from dis-
tributing food in areas under its
control because it says the food
undercuts farmers sellingrecently
harvested crops.
Omar Jamal, first secretary for
Somalia's U.N. Mission, told the
AP yesterday that the problem is
"the absence of law and order."
"Radicals, al-Shabab have to
eat. And ever wonder where their
foods come from? Of course, from
WFP and UNDP," said Jamal, also
referring to the U.N. Development
Program. "Empower the Somali
government to deal with corrupt
contractors, Islamists and war
profiteers awash in the country."
Al-Shabab also accused the
agency of handing out food unfit
for human consumption and of
secretly supporting "apostates," or
those who have renounced Islam.
According to the report, al-
Shabab controls 95 percent of
WFP's areas of operation, the dip-
lomat said.
It said Somalis with WFP con-
tracts are not only diverting aid
but sharing in the proceeds.
Approximately 30 percent of
the food goes to the distribu-
tors or "implementing partners,"
between 5 and 10 percent goes to
the armed group in control of the
area, and 10 percent to the ground
transporter, the diplomat quoted
the report as saying.

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The Department of Communication Studies
The Howard R. Marsh Center
present a lecture by
PROFESSOR NoJIN KWAK
2007-2010 Howeard R. Marsh Distinguished Research Fellow
SoFT NEWS AND POLITICAL ENGAGEMENT:
EXPLORING THE ROLE OF LATE NIGHT AND
COMEDY SiHOWS IN POLICY ASSESSMENT
AND CANDIDATE EVALUATIONS
Friday, March 12, 2010
Reception 4:30 pm - Lecture 5:00 pm
Room 1230, Undergraduate Science Building
204 Washtenaw Avenue/Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2215
Contact the Department of Communication Studies
(734-764-0423) for more information.
WE'R E
HIRING.
APPLY ONLINE by MARCH 19th
www.umich.edu/info
Information
Centers
Michigan Union & Pierpont Commons " (7341 764-INFO

www.mph.illinois.edu

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