Organic Chemistry

The boom in restaurants serving local organic produce has come with an unexpected downside: more bugs in your food. Without pesticides to deter them, aphids, ladybugs, caterpillars and beetles are tagging along on the journey from farm to kitchen to dinner table with greater frequency. But the reactions among diners are as diverse as the critters they're finding on their plates. Some are furious, of course, especially considering they're already paying more for organic food—but a surprising number, restaurateurs say, are cheered. To those customers, such uninvited guests are proof that the produce really is fresh and pesticide-free. "I, for one, would much prefer a bug on my plate to pesticide in my bloodstream," says Ben Long, a communications consultant and foodie from Kalispell, Mont. Sometimes it's more than just a bug. When Richard Samaniego, chef at California's Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa, opened a box of organic lettuce last year, a frog jumped out. "It was a good...

Vindicated Katrina Doc Tells Her Story

Dr. Anna Pou was accused of murdering nine patients in a New Orleans hospital wracked by Katrina, but a grand jury declined to indict her. Now she gives her side of the story.

Dating Sites Match Lovers Who Share Disease

Dating is awkward for Sandra Liz Aquino, 41. She's divorced and beautiful, but she's also HIV-positive. So last month, she signed up with Prescription4Love.com, a dating Web site for people with sexually transmitted diseases and other health conditions. The site, which launched last year, is becoming a go-to spot online where singletons who also happen to have diseases from hepatitis to herpes to irritable bowel syndrome can find love and companionship without having to worry about the big reveal.P4L, which has 1,200 members, is one of a rapidly growing set of niche dating Web sites for people with disabilities and disease. The explosive success of online dating was followed by a proliferation of sites catering to people with HIV and STDs. Those were followed by sites like IrritatedBeingSingle.com, for people with irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn's disease, and C Is for Cupid, catering to romance seekers affected by cancer. P4L is one of the few sites that cater to people with a...

Mitchell Gold on the Bible and Gay Rights

For years, Mitchell Gold, a founder of the popular furniture company Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, has been irritated by what he sees as fundamentalist Christians’ use of the Bible to justify withholding civil rights from gays. Scripture, Gold argues, was used in the past to defend slavery, prohibit interracial marriage and prevent women from voting. Frustrated that few politicians dare to confront anyone brandishing a Bible, in 2005 Gold formed the group Faith In America (FIA), which says its goals are to educate people about the past “misuse” of religion and scripture. FIA's latest campaign is centered on next week’s 40th anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, the Supreme Court decision that overturned Virginia’s ban on interracial marriage, which had been supported by a Virginia judge who ruled the intention of “Almighty God” was to keep the races separate. This week, FIA ran a series of full-page ads in Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper, featuring a photo of former Florida...

Moms and Nannies: A Complicated Relationship

Ever since mothers were admitted to the professional classes, as a long line of books tell us, their lot has not been an easy one: they're overworked, stressed and exhausted. What many find to be most difficult is leaving their children—and, unavoidably, asking strangers to care for them. This dilemma has spawned a new crop of books that examine the emotionally fraught relationship working mothers have with nannies, including "The Perfect Stranger: The Truth About Mothers And Nannies" (Bloomsbury, $23.95) by Lucy Kaylin, a mother of two (and yes, executive editor of Marie Claire). In revealing her most intimate feelings about performing the daily tango of child rearing with someone she has to pay, Kaylin describes the absurdities of judging candidates through an interview (and feeling it necessary to reject someone because she habitually touches her face while speaking), her guilt about being a white woman who employs a racial minority (and how pleased she was that her husband...

Kids & All-Terrain Vehicles: Dangerous Mix

It was supposed to be fun. hanging out with his cousin on a sunny Texas afternoon in 2005, B. J. Smith, then 15, decided to go for a spin on his uncle's new all-terrain vehicle. Even though the boys had been told not to go near the 386-pound machine unsupervised, B.J., a handsome kid with a football player's build, wanted to see what the 350cc ATV could do. With nothing but open road in front of him, B.J., who had been riding motorcycles since he was 5, reached nearly 60mph. Then a dog ran out unexpectedly and clipped the front wheel. B.J.'s life was forever altered. "He lost control of the ATV, and basically he flew 25 feet and hit the street with his head," says his mom, Kim. Blood poured from his eyes, ears, nose and mouth. Doctors said B.J. had only a 10 percent chance of survival. "His brain was so swollen they had to cut out a piece of his skull," recalls Kim. "He's my only child. It was absolutely horrible."With summer on its way, ATV enthusiasts are gearing up for a chance...

Jessica Lynch Sets the Record Straight

Jessica Lynch became a national hero in 2003 after she was dramatically rescued by a team of Special Ops soldiers from an Iraqi hospital where she was believed to be a prisoner of war. Her story was compelling not only because she was a 19-year-old supply-unit clerk who had stumbled into an attack during convoy travel with her unit, but because she was portrayed by military authorities as having valiantly fought back against her attackers even as her unit was surrounded and her comrades were killed and injured. The legend quickly unraveled, however, after Lynch returned to the States, recuperated from her substantial injuries (broken arm and leg bones, damage to her back and kidneys, and a six-inch laceration to her head) and began to speak out about what had really happened. Today, Lynch testified before a House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform hearing probing the source of misleading information about Lynch and about the death of Army Ranger Specialist Patrick Tillman...

Va. Tech: Counselors Discuss Trauma Management

The short-term effects are invariably similar. Anyone connected-directly or indirectly--to the ghastly killings at Virginia Tech on Monday inevitably will be grieving in the days and weeks ahead. But what about the long-term impact of exposure to the massacre? In the past, trauma counselors believed everyone exposed to events like these were at high-risk for debilitating emotional problems. New research, however, suggests that most adults recover quite well and that only 10 to 20 percent of the population is at risk for severe or lasting problems like Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).Whether it’s a school shooting, natural disaster, war or accident, most people respond to a horrible event with a combination of grief, surprise, anger or shock. “These emotions are completely normal,” says Lawrence H. Bergmann, a certified trauma specialist and founder of Post Trauma Resources in South Carolina. “They are appropriate responses, but they will go away in time. In the past we...

Is Imus the Product of a Ghetto Mindset?

Cora Daniels has problems with the cultural legacy of the hood. In her new book, "GhettoNation: A Journey Into The Land of Bling and The Home of The Shameless," the journalist and writer examines how the hip-hop lifestyle and behaviors attributed to inner-city neighborhoods—celebrating gangsters and violence, revering fancy cars and bling, flaunting women's bodies—has permeated American culture and created a widespread “ghetto” mentality. From soda-filled baby bottles to black men calling each other the “n” word to MTV’s “Pimp My Ride,” Daniels chronicles the pervasiveness of “ghetto” thinking and shows how people from all walks of life engage in and celebrate ideas, language and behavior they should find repulsive. In a cable-news climate dominated by fallout from Don Imus’s comments about the Rutgers women's basketball team, NEWSWEEK’s Julie Scelfo spoke with Daniels about why she thinks it’s wrong to celebrate the bad behavior of the underclass. Excerpts: ...

Study: A Downside to Day Care?

A new study finds that children who regularly attend day-care centers develop more behavioral problems in kindergarten than those that don't. What's a parent to do?

Former U.S. Atty. Says Independence Threatened 

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales resisted new calls for his resignation Wednesday over the growing scandal about the dismissal of eight U.S. attorneys. To understand why these firings have become such a politically charged issue, NEWSWEEK’s Julie Scelfo spoke with Mary Jo White, former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, who was appointed by President Clinton and served for nearly nine years, even staying on for 10 months after President Bush took office and ordered three other New York federal prosecutors to step down. White, who earned national prominence for the successful prosecutions of numerous terrorism and white-collar cases, is now a partner at Debevoise & Plimpton in New York. [Editor’s note: Scelfo’s spouse worked for White from 1998-2002.] Excerpts: ...

Men and Depression: New Treatments

For nearly a decade, while serving as an elected official and working as an attorney, Massachusetts state Sen. Bob Antonioni struggled with depression, although he didn't know it. Most days, he attended Senate meetings and appeared on behalf of clients at the courthouse. But privately, he was irritable and short-tempered, ruminating endlessly over his cases and becoming easily frustrated by small things, like deciding which TV show to watch with his girlfriend. After a morning at the state house, he'd be so exhausted by noon that he'd drive home and collapse on the couch, unable to move for the rest of the day.When his younger brother, who was similarly moody, killed himself in 1999, Antonioni, then 40, decided to seek help. For three years, he clandestinely saw a therapist, paying in cash so there would be no record. He took antidepressants, but had his prescriptions filled at a pharmacy 20 miles away. His depression was his burden, and his secret. He couldn't bear for his image to...

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