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Lorena Bobbitt

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NEWS
By ROGER SIMON | January 12, 1994
The trial of Lorena Bobbitt has led more to low humor than serious thought, but it does raise an important and controversial legal issue: the insanity defense.After John Hinckley was found not guilty by reason of insanity after shooting Ronald Reagan in 1981, Congress passed the Insanity Defense Reform Act, making it more difficult to use insanity as a defense in federal cases.A number of states followed suit, but in Virginia, where Lorena Bobbitt is now on trial, "irresistible impulse" is still a legitimate defense.
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FEATURES
By DAVE BARRY | January 1, 1995
It wasn't such a bad year. Really. Some good things did happen. For example, a whole bunch of Historic Mideast Peace Accords got signed. I don't have the exact numbers, but it seemed as though every time you turned on the TV news, you saw a group of formerly hostile Mideast leaders historically signing some accord and hugging each other as though they'd just won the playoffs. Granted, the next day there were always fatal riots, but still.Another good thing about 1994 was that the Earth was not struck by a giant comet chunk, which is fortunate because, the way things were going, it almost certainly would have landed on the White House.
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NEWS
By Mona Charen | November 15, 1993
QUIET Prince William County, Va., home of Civil War battlefields and sleepy suburbs, has lately been the scene of a carnival. The courthouse at Manassas was swamped with media types from 20 countries to cover the rape trial of John Bobbitt, the unfortunate man whose wife cut off his penis last summer.There were hawkers selling T-shirts ("Manassas: A Cut Above"), interest-group representatives spinning the story for local media, and the usual publishing and Hollywood agents poking around for book and movie rights.
FEATURES
By MIKE LITTWIN | March 4, 1994
We are in a dangerous period. You can look at the headlines and see the problem. There are stories on health care and gun control and budget meetings. Like anyone's going to read them.If there's one thing we understand in the news biz, it's that we need scandal. Scandal sells. Scandal puts food on the table.Let's take the Nancy-Tonya affair, only the single biggest international story since Yalta.People were so mesmerized by the dimensions of the scandal that they actually tuned in to watch the luge just, I'm guessing, on the off chance that Tonya would come sliding down the course topless, shouting "Gill-o-o-o-ly."
NEWS
By New York Times News Service | January 21, 1994
MANASSAS, Va. -- A jury today was weighing the evidence against Lorena Bobbitt to decide if she acted deliberately and maliciously when she cut off her husband's penis with a kitchen knife last June 23, or whether she was temporarily insane.Mrs. Bobbitt's case went to the jury yesterday afternoon, and deliberations barely began before adjournment.Earlier, in closing arguments, the prosecution told jurors that Mrs. Bobbitt had acted with intent and rage when she mutilated her husband. Defense lawyers countered that she was seeking to protect herself from an abusive husband and had snapped psychologically, yielding to an "irresistible impulse."
NEWS
By DAN BERGER | January 12, 1994
Ukraine will give up 1,800 nuclear warheads if Russia promises to give up Ukraine.John and Lorena Bobbitt do deserve to get rich from their alleged crimes. They have entertained the nation.There is no assurance that if the Atlantic Alliance goes to war in Bosnia, it will be on the same side.
NEWS
By DAN BERGER | March 2, 1994
Now Bosnian Serbs may try to bomb the U.N. in New York. Everyone else has.When the Secret Police finally come to confiscate the gun you have owned by right under the Second Amendment, they will have bought your name and address as a gun-owner from the National Rifle Association.Spies used to be ill-paid, but the feds say the Ames' pay went up like ball players'. It's whom you play ball with that counts in this game.Cheer up. Lorena Bobbitt is cured.
NEWS
By Chicago Tribune | November 11, 1993
MANASSAS, Va. -- Whether it provokes people to laugh, fume or cringe, "The Case of the Severed Penis" already is much more than the story of one relationship gone awry. It has become a bizarre symbol of sexual tensions in the 1990s.The fight between John Wayne Bobbitt, 26, and his estranged wife, Lorena Bobbitt, 24, reverberates with ultimate sexual fears and revenge fantasies.Today, few television viewers or newspaper readers in the United States or elsewhere will be unaware that a jury of nine women and three men acquitted John Bobbitt of marital sexual assault -- the equivalent of rape.
NEWS
January 25, 1994
The media frenzy surrounding Lorena Bobbitt's acquittal had little to do with the reason for the verdict -- temporary insanity -- and everything to do with the public's macabre fascination with the method of her revenge on an abusive husband. Too bad. The lesson of the Bobbitt saga is not only the mutilation she inflicted on her husband but the years of cruelty that led to such a ghastly act.Coincidently, the same day the jury announced its decision in Manassas, Va., a courthouse in Baltimore County was the scene of a meeting that offers hope to many women who feel as desperate and beleaguered as Lorena Bobbitt.
NEWS
By MIKE ROYKO | January 26, 1994
Since my ill-advised series of limericks on the Bobbitts, I have avoided any mention of that unhappy couple. I learned my lesson.I was chided for my crudeness by numerous editors whose newspapers declined to print the limericks.Worse, I was berated for my lack of sensitivity by men's rights groups who mourned Mr. Bobbitt's sexual loss.Robert Keith Smith, a member of the Coalition of Free Men, wrote: "Men have been so conditioned by our society to view themselves as worthless, they feel no empathy when one of our own sex is mistreated in such a brutal way."
NEWS
By DAN BERGER | March 2, 1994
Now Bosnian Serbs may try to bomb the U.N. in New York. Everyone else has.When the Secret Police finally come to confiscate the gun you have owned by right under the Second Amendment, they will have bought your name and address as a gun-owner from the National Rifle Association.Spies used to be ill-paid, but the feds say the Ames' pay went up like ball players'. It's whom you play ball with that counts in this game.Cheer up. Lorena Bobbitt is cured.
NEWS
By Adam Pertman and Adam Pertman,Boston Globe | February 13, 1994
When the jury first voted on a verdict in Erik Menendez's trial for killing his parents, the division could hardly have been more stark: The six men wanted to convict for first-degree murder, while the six women opted for the much-reduced charge of voluntary manslaughter.The high-profile trial ended because the jury deadlocked. But legal experts, social scientists and psychologists agree the split decision provided an unusually vivid illustration of a little-discussed but increasingly evident phenomenon -- that men and women often view accounts of criminal cases very differently, particularly when those cases involve allegations of sexual, mental or physical abuse.
NEWS
By MIKE ROYKO | January 26, 1994
Since my ill-advised series of limericks on the Bobbitts, I have avoided any mention of that unhappy couple. I learned my lesson.I was chided for my crudeness by numerous editors whose newspapers declined to print the limericks.Worse, I was berated for my lack of sensitivity by men's rights groups who mourned Mr. Bobbitt's sexual loss.Robert Keith Smith, a member of the Coalition of Free Men, wrote: "Men have been so conditioned by our society to view themselves as worthless, they feel no empathy when one of our own sex is mistreated in such a brutal way."
FEATURES
By Alice Steinbach | January 26, 1994
I am going to write down two names here and, please, promise me you won't stop reading this column the minute you see them: John and Lorena Bobbitt.Quickly, very quickly, let me assure you this is not a rehashing of the crime or what all this means to the National Organization for Women or the National Organization for Men, Inc.By now it seems pretty clear to anyone capable of thinking clearly that the Bobbitts symbolize little in the way of universal lessons...
NEWS
January 25, 1994
The almost segregated-by-sex reaction (women in favor, men not) to Lorena Bobbitt's acquittal suggests, in addition to the public's macabre fascination with her revengeful mutilation of her husband, that there is a lesson about women's state of mind following extreme physical and emotional abuse. Certainly women do not see the Bobbitt case as a model for revenge; there are better ways to get even. Still, "Burning Bed" scenarios in which women kill their abusers are not uncommon.There were men on the jury, too, and there are plenty of signs that men and women are largely in agreement that America has passed the point where customs shaped by the instincts and predetermined roles of distant eras can prevail in society.
NEWS
January 25, 1994
The media frenzy surrounding Lorena Bobbitt's acquittal had little to do with the reason for the verdict -- temporary insanity -- and everything to do with the public's macabre fascination with the method of her revenge on an abusive husband. Too bad. The lesson of the Bobbitt saga is not only the mutilation she inflicted on her husband but the years of cruelty that led to such a ghastly act.Coincidently, the same day the jury announced its decision in Manassas, Va., a courthouse in Baltimore County was the scene of a meeting that offers hope to many women who feel as desperate and beleaguered as Lorena Bobbitt.
NEWS
By Annie Gottlieb | November 8, 1993
LAST month was National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, but it's November that will really put the issue of violence against women on the map.John Wayne Bobbitt was scheduled to go on trial today, accused of sexually assaulting his wife, Lorena Bobbitt; on Nov. 29, it will be her day in court. On June 23, as everyone must know by now, she cut off his penis with a kitchen knife.Lorena Bobbitt has said that she endured her husband's rapes and beatings throughout their marriage. But it's her sensational act that has made her a media icon and will put the two trials at the epicenter of the hottest gender debate since Clarence Thomas and Anita Hill.
FEATURES
By Alice Steinbach | January 26, 1994
I am going to write down two names here and, please, promise me you won't stop reading this column the minute you see them: John and Lorena Bobbitt.Quickly, very quickly, let me assure you this is not a rehashing of the crime or what all this means to the National Organization for Women or the National Organization for Men, Inc.By now it seems pretty clear to anyone capable of thinking clearly that the Bobbitts symbolize little in the way of universal lessons...
NEWS
By JAMES P. PINKERTON | January 23, 1994
In 1922, Sinclair Lewis wrote "Babbitt," in which he satirized the life and times of one George F. Babbitt. Lewis so brilliantly captured the smug narrow-mindedness of pre-Depression America that "babbittry" entered the lexicon as a noun to describe bourgeois conformity. This eponym is still used, but not often, because narrow conformity isn't a big problem anymore.Much more common today is "bobbittry," the phenomenon in which people, such as John and Lorena Bobbitt, are accused of crimes but plead their case to the media before they even see a jury.
NEWS
By ARTHUR HIRSCH | January 23, 1994
As the Washington Post's Virginia editor describes the scene in the newsroom, one pictures Dustin Hoffman and Robert Redford earnestly scurrying around at the first faint trembles of an earthquake soon to shake the nation and the world.As in the Watergate burglary, this was also a morning in June -- June 23, 1993. But the newsroom discussion was not about shady doings at the summit of American government.It was about some ugly business before dawn that day in a one-bedroom apartment outside the city of Manassas, Va., involving an otherwise unremarkable married couple named John and Lorena Bobbitt.
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