KIDS THESE DAYS
A 5-year-old boy in Broward County, Fla., preparing to enter kindergarten, is believed by gender-identity experts to be the youngest kid in the country whose family supports his decision to live completely as the other sex (according to a May profile in New Times Broward-Palm Beach). The parents doubt that the unnamed now-girl (dubbed “Nicole Anderson” in the article) is “just going through a phase,” because of “her” early, constant, and insistent female preferences and comments, e.g., “I want the fairy princess to come and make my penis into a vagina.”
New Scientist magazine reported in May that the Pentagon’s cutting-edge research agency, DARPA, was considering a human-launching device that works like a cannon, to blast special-forces troops (and maybe firefighters and police officers) at just the right trajectory so that they land on hard-to-reach locations, such as rooftops.
THE CONTINUING CAMPAIGN TO MAKE EVERYTHING PERFECT
The principal of Liberty Elementary School in Colleyville, Texas, authorized an enlarged photo of a nickel on this year’s yearbook cover, but with “In God We Trust” deleted so as not to cause offense—but then handed out stickers with those four words so that students could place them on the cover photo if they wished. And a British government agency recently decided to spend the equivalent of $33 million over 10 years to encourage women and minorities to become fishermen (or fisherwomen) because too many anglers are white, male and middle-aged.
FETISHES ON PARADE
Ernest G. Johnson, 42, was arrested in Shreveport, La., in May after he, posing as an insurance company employee, roamed the corridors at LSU Hospital seeking to photograph women wearing casts. Said a police detective, “It’s like all he wants is to be in the presence of a woman with a cast on and have her attention.” And in April in Wausau, Wis., Thomas Vogedes, 58, was sentenced to six months’ probation for incidents in which he hung dozens of bras and panties (new and used) from car mirrors and videotaped them.
LEAST COMPETENT CRIMINALS
Sarah Zabolotny, 29, who was in the courthouse in Buckhannon, W.Va., in March to deal with a speeding ticket, was later charged with petty larceny after she was seen on surveillance video folding up an 8-foot rug in the building and walking out the door. When a court clerk tracked her down, Zabolotny asked if she could just give it back and forget the whole thing, but the clerk said no. And in Williston, N.D., in March, Ryan Wright, 20, was arrested for bank robbery, even though he insisted that all he did was walk in to the bank wearing a ski mask and demand money, before saying, “Just kidding” and leaving.
The newspaper Ha’aretz (Tel Aviv) reported in March that the Moqassed Hospital in East Jerusalem was under investigation for detaining a newborn baby for two months because its parents did not pay the bill. The mother had given birth to premature triplets; the hospital allegedly let her take two home but kept the third. MTW