Weekly Review — September 21, 2004, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

[Image: A burning Plain]
A burning plain.

The United Nations Security Council passed another resolution asking the Sudanese government to prevent its proxies from slaughtering people in Darfur (China, Algeria, Pakistan, and Russia abstained). The resolution, which for the first time formally invokes the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, says that the council will “consider” sanctions if the genocide continues.New York TimesChaos continued to rule Iraq; there were many attacks by insurgents, including several large suicide bombings, hostages were beheaded, and many civilians, including women and children, were killed in American airstrikes.New York TimesIraqi prime minister Iyad Allawi broke his hand.New York TimesAmerican weapons inspectors in Iraq once again concluded that Saddam Hussein would have liked to have developed unconventional weapons but did not in fact have such programs.New York TimesA classified National Intelligence Estimate prepared for President Bush warned of civil war in Iraq, and theSan Francisco Chroniclepresident said that the country is on a path to a democratic future. Some Republicans were worried about the contradiction between the president’s optimistic comments and what is actually happening on the ground. Senator Chuck Hagel observed that “we are in deep trouble in Iraq.”Voice of AmericaPresident Vladimir Putin of Russia responded to the recent terror attacks there by announcing plans for a radical restructuring of the Russian political system that would end the popular election of regional governors and district representatives in parliament.Lexington Herald-LeaderMany of those governors praised Putin’s plans; few politicians dared criticize them. Colin Powell expressed “concerns.”New York TimesNATO was short of troops in Afghanistan.New York TimesVolcanic ash rained down on Tokyo.Associated Press

Republicans in West Virginia told voters that Democrats will ban the Bible if John Kerry wins the presidency in November.Associated PressDick Cheney said that electing John Kerry could lead to another terrorist attack.USA TodayThe federal ban on assault weapons expired.New York TimesThe mother of a dead American soldier was taken away in handcuffs after she challenged Laura Bush at a campaign rally.New York TimesTurkish politicians were debating whether to outlaw adultery.New York TimesJiang Zemin retired as head of China’s military.Daily TelegraphIsrael’s security cabinet approved a plan to pay up to $300,000 to Jewish families that agreed to abandon the Gaza Strip.New York TimesTwo Canadianlesbians were granted a divorce.New York TimesThe U.S. Department of Labor said that the average working woman spends twice as much time doing household tasks and caring for children as the average working man; working women also sleep an average one hour less than working men. The survey also said that the average adult has about five hours of leisure time a day and spends half of it watching TV.New York TimesA schoolteacher was arrested for carrying a weighted bookmark in her purse as she attempted to board an airplane in Tampa, Florida.St. Petersburg TimesA Texas judge found that the state’s system of educational funding is unconstitutional.New York TimesA federal judge struck down Pennsylvania’s Internet Child Pornography Act because it blocked more than one million legitimate sites in order to block 400 pornographers.Washington PostPresident Bush worried that because of frivolous lawsuits “too many OB/GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country.”IC Wales

The World Health Organization reported that suicide kills more people worldwide than murder and war put together.New ScientistThe British House of Commons voted to outlaw fox hunting with dogs after pro-hunting protesters broke into the chamber and insulted the rural affairs minister.TelegraphMartha Stewart asked for permission to begin her five-month prison sentence early instead of waiting for her appeal. Stewart said she would be sad to miss the holiday season but that it was time to reclaim her “good life. I must return to my good works.”Washington PostA naughty Indian monkey was sentenced to life in prison.Chicago TribuneChicago Mayor Richard Daley announced a new municipal surveillance system that will use 2,000 remote-controlled cameras that “are the equivalent of hundreds of sets of eyes.”USA TodayScientists were developing a stinky robot that attracts flies, which it then digests and converts into electricity.New ScientistThe Cassini spacecraft discovered a new ring around Saturn.2004-09-09The Genesis space capsule, which had been collecting sun beams in outer space, crashed into the Utah desert after two helicopters failed to catch it in mid-air as planned.New ScientistEfforts to control the global spread of tuberculosis were failing.New ScientistScientists created a genetically modified fish that produces a human blood-clotting factor.New ScientistBritish psychologists warned that people who keep diaries are more likely to suffer from headaches, insomnia, digestive complaints, and social problems.New ScientistA new study found that Legionella bacteria, the cause of Legionnaire’s disease, lurks in a quarter of all hot tubs.New ScientistHippos were dying in Uganda.Associated Press

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Ashley arrived for her prenatal appointment at Black Hills Obstetrics and Gynecology, in Rapid City, South Dakota, wearing a black zip-up hoodie and Converse sneakers.1 To explain her absence from work that morning — a Tuesday in April 2015 — she had told a co-worker that she was having “female issues.” She was twenty-five years old and eight weeks pregnant. She had been separated from her husband, with whom she had a five-year-old son, for the better part of a year. The guy who’d gotten her pregnant was someone she’d met at the gym, and he’d made it abundantly clear that he wanted nothing more to do with her. Ashley found herself hoping that the doctor would discover some kind of fetal defect, so that her decision would be easier. She glanced across the waiting room at a television playing a birth-control ad and laughed darkly. “Jesus, Lord, it would be so nice if someone just pushed me down a flight of stairs.”

In the exam room, she perched on the table with her feet crossed at the ankles, her blond hair brushing the back of her pink hospital gown. “I don’t know what’s available for me here,” she told her doctor, Katherine Degen, who sat facing her on a stool. “I figured nothing.”

 Some names and identifying details have been changed. 

“Big, fat zero, unfortunately,” Degen said, making a 0 with her fingers. The last doctor who provided abortions in Rapid City retired in 1986, three years before Ashley was born.

The baby was due in November, when Ashley, who was a nurse, hoped to be enrolled in a graduate program to become a nurse practitioner. Getting pregnant as a teenager had forced her to put that dream on hold, but she had thought that she was finally ready; she had even submitted her application shortly before the March 15 deadline. For the first time in her adult life, Ashley felt as if her plans were coming together. Then she missed her period.

It would be too difficult to attend school as a single mother of two, Ashley knew. She had made an appointment for three weeks from now at the nearest abortion clinic, in Billings, Montana, 318 miles away. But just a week and a half ago, her husband had said he wanted to get back together and offered to raise the child as his own. Was it a sign that she was meant to continue the pregnancy? As a rule, Ashley approached her problems with resolve. She was capable and tough; she liked shooting guns and lifting weights. She kept track of her stats and checked off her goals as she achieved them one by one. Yet the dilemma before her had shaken her confidence. She leaned back and turned to watch the ultrasound screen. The black-and-white image danced. A sharp, fast thumping emerged from the machine. As Degen removed the wand, Ashley wiped the corner of her eye.

Photograph (detail) by Brian Frank
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A Window To The World·

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Ashley arrived for her prenatal appointment at Black Hills Obstetrics and Gynecology, in Rapid City, South Dakota, wearing a black zip-up hoodie and Converse sneakers.1 To explain her absence from work that morning — a Tuesday in April 2015 — she had told a co-worker that she was having “female issues.” She was twenty-five years old and eight weeks pregnant. She had been separated from her husband, with whom she had a five-year-old son, for the better part of a year. The guy who’d gotten her pregnant was someone she’d met at the gym, and he’d made it abundantly clear that he wanted nothing more to do with her. Ashley found herself hoping that the doctor would discover some kind of fetal defect, so that her decision would be easier. She glanced across the waiting room at a television playing a birth-control ad and laughed darkly. “Jesus, Lord, it would be so nice if someone just pushed me down a flight of stairs.”

In the exam room, she perched on the table with her feet crossed at the ankles, her blond hair brushing the back of her pink hospital gown. “I don’t know what’s available for me here,” she told her doctor, Katherine Degen, who sat facing her on a stool. “I figured nothing.”

 Some names and identifying details have been changed. 

“Big, fat zero, unfortunately,” Degen said, making a 0 with her fingers. The last doctor who provided abortions in Rapid City retired in 1986, three years before Ashley was born.

The baby was due in November, when Ashley, who was a nurse, hoped to be enrolled in a graduate program to become a nurse practitioner. Getting pregnant as a teenager had forced her to put that dream on hold, but she had thought that she was finally ready; she had even submitted her application shortly before the March 15 deadline. For the first time in her adult life, Ashley felt as if her plans were coming together. Then she missed her period.

It would be too difficult to attend school as a single mother of two, Ashley knew. She had made an appointment for three weeks from now at the nearest abortion clinic, in Billings, Montana, 318 miles away. But just a week and a half ago, her husband had said he wanted to get back together and offered to raise the child as his own. Was it a sign that she was meant to continue the pregnancy? As a rule, Ashley approached her problems with resolve. She was capable and tough; she liked shooting guns and lifting weights. She kept track of her stats and checked off her goals as she achieved them one by one. Yet the dilemma before her had shaken her confidence. She leaned back and turned to watch the ultrasound screen. The black-and-white image danced. A sharp, fast thumping emerged from the machine. As Degen removed the wand, Ashley wiped the corner of her eye.

Artwork by Imre Kinszki © Imre Kinszki Estate
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The Lords of Lambeau·

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Ashley arrived for her prenatal appointment at Black Hills Obstetrics and Gynecology, in Rapid City, South Dakota, wearing a black zip-up hoodie and Converse sneakers.1 To explain her absence from work that morning — a Tuesday in April 2015 — she had told a co-worker that she was having “female issues.” She was twenty-five years old and eight weeks pregnant. She had been separated from her husband, with whom she had a five-year-old son, for the better part of a year. The guy who’d gotten her pregnant was someone she’d met at the gym, and he’d made it abundantly clear that he wanted nothing more to do with her. Ashley found herself hoping that the doctor would discover some kind of fetal defect, so that her decision would be easier. She glanced across the waiting room at a television playing a birth-control ad and laughed darkly. “Jesus, Lord, it would be so nice if someone just pushed me down a flight of stairs.”

In the exam room, she perched on the table with her feet crossed at the ankles, her blond hair brushing the back of her pink hospital gown. “I don’t know what’s available for me here,” she told her doctor, Katherine Degen, who sat facing her on a stool. “I figured nothing.”

 Some names and identifying details have been changed. 

“Big, fat zero, unfortunately,” Degen said, making a 0 with her fingers. The last doctor who provided abortions in Rapid City retired in 1986, three years before Ashley was born.

The baby was due in November, when Ashley, who was a nurse, hoped to be enrolled in a graduate program to become a nurse practitioner. Getting pregnant as a teenager had forced her to put that dream on hold, but she had thought that she was finally ready; she had even submitted her application shortly before the March 15 deadline. For the first time in her adult life, Ashley felt as if her plans were coming together. Then she missed her period.

It would be too difficult to attend school as a single mother of two, Ashley knew. She had made an appointment for three weeks from now at the nearest abortion clinic, in Billings, Montana, 318 miles away. But just a week and a half ago, her husband had said he wanted to get back together and offered to raise the child as his own. Was it a sign that she was meant to continue the pregnancy? As a rule, Ashley approached her problems with resolve. She was capable and tough; she liked shooting guns and lifting weights. She kept track of her stats and checked off her goals as she achieved them one by one. Yet the dilemma before her had shaken her confidence. She leaned back and turned to watch the ultrasound screen. The black-and-white image danced. A sharp, fast thumping emerged from the machine. As Degen removed the wand, Ashley wiped the corner of her eye.

Photograph (detail) by Balazs Gardi
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With Child·

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"She glanced across the waiting room at a television playing a birth-control ad and laughed darkly. 'Jesus, Lord, it would be so nice if someone just pushed me down a flight of stairs.'"
Photograph (detail) by Lara Shipley

Price of ten pencils made from “recycled twigs,” from the Nature Company:

$39.50

A loggerhead turtle in a Kobe aquarium at last achieved swimming success with her twenty-seventh set of prosthetic fins. “When her children hatch,” said the aquarium’s director, “well, I just feel that would make all the trauma in her life worthwhile.”

In Colombia, U.N. delegates sent to serve as impartial observers of the peace process aimed at ending the half-century-long war between the FARC and the Colombian government were chastised after they were filmed dancing and getting drunk with FARC fighters at a New Year’s Eve party.

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