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Cleveland kidnapping hero flatly rejects free burgers

Published: Wednesday, May 29, 2013 @ 10:12 AM
Updated: Wednesday, May 29, 2013 @ 1:47 PM

A love for the Big Mac and quick actions to help rescue three kidnapping victims and a child from a Cleveland home gained Charles Ramsey a place in the national spotlight earlier this month.

But the 43-year-old straight-talker credited with helping rescue Amanda Berry, her daughter, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight on May 6 doesn’t want a free meal and in no uncertain words has told restaurants to hold the lettuce, tomato and nonsense.

Through his attorney, Ramsey said he wants help for the women allegedly held captive by Ariel Castro and no undue publicity, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports.

“I want everyone to know that I have nothing to do with this trash,” Ramsey said in a written statement released by attorney Patricia Walker. His comments were in response to a burger named in his honor and an offer for free burgers for life.

Police say Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight had been held captive in the Castro’s house for at least nine years.

Read: Commentary: 7 creepy things you didn’t know about accused Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro

The trio disappeared separately.

Ramsey and his neighbor Angel Cordero helped kidnapping victim Berry and her young daughter. The other two young women were freed soon after.

Walker told the PD Ramsey was disgusted by an online video game that depicts him and Ariel Castro in a hamburger food fight.

Ramsey famous stopped eating his Big Mac to help Berry.

More than a dozen restaurants have offered Ramsey free burgers for life. A “Chuck Card” was being developed.

The dishwasher’s employer, Cleveland’s Hodges, released the Ramsey Burger, an an 8-ounce Angus Beef burger with a secret sauce.

The restaurant has removed the burger from its menu, the Plain Dealer reports.

“The Ramsey burger was named to honor an employee at a time he indicated he would be returning to his job at Hodge’s. It was not developed to generate additional revenue for the restaurant — nor has it,” the business said in a statement. “We are saddened to hear that Chuck did not take this — or the offer of so many Cleveland restaurants to give him free meals — in the spirit we intended.”

What do you think about Ramsey turning down the burgers?

Contact this columnist at arobinson@DaytonDailyNews.com or Twitter.com/DDNSmartMouth

Dog chained up for 15 years gets new forever home

Published: Friday, February 24, 2017 @ 4:45 PM
Updated: Friday, February 24, 2017 @ 4:45 PM


            Dog chained up for 15 years gets new forever home

A dog named Bear spent most of his 15 years of life chained in a yard, until a non-profit animal rescue organization stepped in.

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USA Today reported Friday that a lab mix named Bear was rescued by Guardians of Rescue, which was able to convince the dog's owners to surrender him.

"We received a call about a dog in need of a dog house," Robert Misseri, the founder and president of GOR, said in a statement, according to ABC News."But when we got there, it was even worse than that."

WNBC reported Jan. 23 that as the rescue group broke Bear's chain, he walked up to his rescuers wagging his tail. Soon after, the dog, who a spokesperson for GOR told ABC News had arthritis and heartworms, was taken to a vet for treatment and groomed.

His rescuers took Bear to the beach for the first time and treated him to a puppuccino after he was groomed and vetted.

Kerrie Rosenfeld adopted Bear Jan. 29 and posted a Facebook video with her new pup, beaming with pride and gratitude.

>> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news

"I'm so happy to welcome him into my family. I'm going to spoil him and love him for the rest of his days," Rosenfeld said. "He deserves the best life ever and I am blessed to be his new mommy and get to show him what it's liked to be loved and wanted and needed."

Rosenfeld gives Bear the love, attention and safety he needs and shares their adventures on his Instagram page called Bear The Dog: Unchained.

“No Hazing Lady’s” fight against the University of Dayton approaching 14 years

Published: Wednesday, August 07, 2013 @ 7:31 AM
Updated: Wednesday, August 07, 2013 @ 7:31 AM

“No Hazing Lady’s” fight against the University of Dayton approaching 14 years

Elizabeth Thompson knows a lot about the intersection at Brown and Stewart streets.

 

At least once a week for nearly 14 years, the associate professor of electrical engineering at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne has held one of several protest signs near the University of Dayton’s main gate.

 

The messages have a definite theme: `Stop the Academic Fraud,’ `Hazing Is Not Leadership With Virtue’ and ‘Stop the Hypocrisy’

 

The neon sign Thompson — among other things IPFW’s faculty adviser for the Society of Women Engineers —  toted Monday read: “Hazing is illegal. Stop the Harassment.”

 

The university has long rebuffed Thompson’s long list of complaints.

 

The pivotal claim is that she was given a `B’ in an engineering master’s course when she earned an `A.’

 

She said she was told the lower grade was given to teach her respect. The ‘B’ was so devastating that it made her cry for weeks.

 

Before the incident, Thompson had all A’s and a 4.0 grade average. While appealing the grade, she went on to earn her doctorate from UD. She subsequently became a professor at the Indiana university.

 

Thompson said UD made her an outcast when she complained and has not made an attempt to resolve the situation since January 2000.

 

University officials have said that Thompson’s claims have been determined to be unfounded despite conferences, hearings and a mediation session at the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. In 2007, one official said her transcripts couldn’t be changed as she desires.

 

“She is a graduate and has been part of our campus community; we regret that she has not found closure on this issue,” the university said it in a statement this week .

 

There has definitely been no closure, but the world definitely has kept spinning.

 

Since Thompson started her campaign at the intersection of Stewart and Brown streets, and surrounding areas have changed dramatically. NCR is gone. UD has expanded and there are dozens of new shops and restaurants near the corridor.

 

Slim and petite, Thompson has withstood heat and cold during her protest of actions by the university she calls “unethical, immoral and illegal.”

 

Others see her as a whack job.

 

Although she was reluctant to admit it — she maintains most people believe she is ‘fighting the good fight” — Thompson has been the butt of many jokes.

 

She is known by many simply as the “No Hazing Lady.”

 

As I reported in 2003, students in the past have held counter-protests, toting signs with slogans that read `I’m her Pimp,’ `Stop the Academic Broad’ and `Get a Life.’

 

Those students are likely well into their careers by now.

 

Thompson’s campaign continues.

 

During the school year she’s out there from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at least once a week. In the summer the mother of two adult children gets started around 11 a.m.

 

Thompson declined to be videotaped Monday.

 

She wore sunglasses and a top and matching red shorts. She sometimes uses an umbrella to help protect her skin from the sun.

 

Thompson still maintains that the university is in the wrong and that she will maintain her fight until justice is served.

 

“I may not change their minds, but I will not be in complicity by my silence,” she said. “I am taking a stand. I am not in any hurry.”

 

Like many, I wondered if Thompson has considered how much time she has wasted standing at the intersection of Brown and Stewart.

 

October will officially mark the protest’s 14th anniversary.

 

Those years are gone, and UD shows no signs that it thinks it has done anything inappropriate.

 

Thompson is surely determined and says she has always been.

 

Wouldn’t that determination be better placed elsewhere?

 

Thompson says ‘no’ and that it has all worth the fight.

 

“They have convinced themselves they are not wrong,” Thompson said. “This is the only way to change their way of thinking.”

 

What do you think?

 

Should Elizabeth Thompson continue to ‘fight the good fight’ or should she move on?

 

Share your thoughts below.

 
Contact this columnist at arobinson@DaytonDailyNews.com or Twitter.com/DDNSmartMouth

'Father of the selfie' has taken daily photo of himself for 30 years

Published: Friday, February 24, 2017 @ 10:30 AM
Updated: Friday, February 24, 2017 @ 10:30 AM


            'Father of the selfie' has taken daily photo of himself for 30 years

A Boston College professor has become the unofficial "father of the selfie" after leading a creative project in which he has taken a photo of himself daily for the last 30 years.

Karl Baden, 64, launched the project on Feb. 23, 1987, according to The Associated Press. He uses the same 35mm camera, tripod, backdrop and lighting for each photo, and tries to maintain the same expression. Baden said taking the photo has become part of his daily ritual.  

Baden said the project touches on the notions of mortality, obsession, incremental change and perfection, according to The Associated Press.

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"As much as I try to make every picture the same, I fail every day," Baden said. "There's always something that's a little different, aside from the aging process."

The photo project is now approaching 11,000 photos and has been featured in gallery exhibits.

While Baden has taken care to maintain his appearance over the years, he underwent chemotherapy in 2001 to treat prostate cancer, which altered his appearance temporarily.

Even while battling cancer, he managed to take his daily selfie. Baden admitted that over the 30-year span, there was one day where he forgot to take a photo: Oct. 15, 1991. He didn't have a good excuse, calling it a "dumb moment of forgetfulness."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Activists say tigers in viral drone video live on farm accused of animal rights abuses

Published: Thursday, February 23, 2017 @ 1:27 PM
Updated: Friday, February 24, 2017 @ 11:03 AM


            Activists say tigers in viral drone video live on farm accused of animal rights abuses

EDITOR'S NOTE: Reports that the tiger habitat seen in the video is actually a farm with a long history of animal rights abuses have surfaced since the video went viral. A 2014 investigative report by McClatchy outlines the allegations of abuse. 

Read the original report below.

Siberian tigers in northeast China were seen chasing a drone in their snowy habitat.

Handlers used the drone to give the tigers, which CCTV described earlier this month as "chubby," some much-needed exercise.

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As the tigers romped around, one tiger managed to knock the drone to the ground, where it proceeded to claw and chew on the device. The other tigers moved closer, curious to explore the drone.

The drone began to smoke, which caused the tigers to move back. Handlers came to retrieve the mangled machine.