Nation Digest


December 04, 2005

Mass. chief justice apologizes for remark about `red states'

BOSTON -- Massachusetts' chief justice has apologized for a remark she made about "red states" during a commencement speech last spring after a citizen complaint was filed with the state's Commission on Judicial Conduct.

In greeting the audience at the Brandeis University commencement in May, Chief Justice Margaret Marshall commented on the hundreds of blue and white balloons held in nets tied to the rafters.

"No red states here," Marshall told the crowd, using a term used to describe Republican-leaning states.

In her apology Friday, the chief justice said she regretted making the comment.

"The reference to `red states' was not part of my written, prepared speech. I regret the comment, and I apologize for it," she said. "I did not intend to say anything of a political nature."

Associated Press

Museum reopens in New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS -- The National D-Day Museum, looted and vandalized in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, reopened yesterday with a smaller staff but with its artifacts and exhibits intact. About 300 people were on hand for the opening and more filed in through the day to see the nation's first museum dedicated to World War II, with interactive video and audio exhibits that complement the artifacts, warplanes and military vehicles on display. Unlike much of the city, the museum in downtown New Orleans was not flooded. However, it suffered about $200,000 to $300,000 in damage, primarily related to theft and vandalism at the gift store and coffee shop, both of which were open yesterday, said President and Chief Executive Nick Mueller.

Pro surfer dies in Hawaii accident

HONOLULU --A Tahitian professional surfer drowned Friday after wiping out on a big wave off Oahu's North Shore. Malik Joyeux, 25, was underwater for about 10 minutes after falling on an 8-foot wave at Hawaii's famous Banzai Pipeline surf break, according to witness and photographer Bruno Lemos. The wave exploded on top of Joyeux, snapping his board in half, Lemos said. Surfers spotted Joyeux's body floating in a nearby break and paddled him to shore.

Boy, 2, found with crack cocaine

PHILADELPHIA --A 2-year-old boy was removed from his family and his mother could face charges after the child handed his daycare teacher two packets of crack cocaine, and a search of his jacket pocket turned up nine more, police said. The boy's mother was taken in for questioning when she came to pick him up at the end of the day Friday. Police said she could be charged with endangering the welfare of children. The toddler talked about the drugs, but it wasn't clear how much he understood. According to police, he said he took the packets off a table at home.

Struck pedestrian issued $5 ticket

WASHINGTON --A former secretary of the U.S. Commission on Fine Arts received a $5 jaywalking ticket after he was hit by a car and critically injured while crossing a busy street. Charles Atherton, 73, was conscious when he was issued the ticket before being taken to George Washington University Hospital, District of Columbia police told The Washington Post. However, witnesses reported that Atherton was unresponsive and struggling to breathe as he lay crumpled in the road Thursday night. They said he was knocked out of his shoes and his head hit the vehicle's windshield, leaving him bleeding from his head and nose. Police said Atherton received the ticket because he caused the accident by crossing Connecticut Avenue in midblock.

From wire reports

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