Sunday, October 31, 2010

What is an Amrndment?

     This particular email was received, appropriately, on Halloween, 2010. The gist of the message plays at the heart strings of responsible Americans as a call-to-arms to put self-serving politicians in check. Research on the 28th Amendment (proper spelling) reveals a Snopes article that refutes the claim in the email and other web pages that offer different proposed 28th amendments.


TIME HAS COME FOR THE 28th AMRNDMENT [title copied directly from the email]

"The big question for the election next month is whether the voters keep their
eye on the ball and judge candidates by what policies they advocate or whether
they can be thrown off the track by red herrings. We have already seen in 2008
what can happen when voters fail to pay attention to a presidential candidate's
track record, and let themselves be dazzled by rhetoric, symbolism and media
hype." --economist Thomas Sowell

The Time Has Indeed Come!

Governors of 35 states have already filed suit against the Federal Government
for imposing unlawful burdens upon them.  It only takes 38 (of the 50) States to
convene a Constitutional Convention.

This will take less than thirty seconds to read. If you agree, please pass it

An idea whose time has come!

For too long we have been too complacent about the workings of Congress. Many
citizens had no idea that members of Congress could retire with the same pay
after only one term, that they specifically exempted themselves from many of the
laws they have passed (such as being exempt from any fear of prosecution
for sexual harassment) while ordinary citizens must live under those laws. The
latest was to exempt themselves from the Healthcare Reform ... in all of its
forms.Somehow, that doesn't seem logical. We do not have an elite that is above
the law.

I truly don't care if they are Democrat, Republican, Independent or whatever.
The self-serving must stop.

A Constitutional Convention - this is a good way to do that. It is an idea whose
time has come.  And, with the advent of modern communication, the process can be
moved along with incredible speed. There is talk out there that the "government"
doesn't care what the people think.  That is irrelevant.  It is incumbent on the
population to address elected officials to the wrongs afflicted against the and me.  Think about this...
The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3
months & 8 days to be ratified!  Why?  Simple!  The people demanded it. That was
in 1971...before computers, before e-mail, before cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took 1 year or less to
become the law of the land...all because of public pressure.

I'm asking each addressee to forward this Email to a minimum of twenty people on
their Address list; in turn ask each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the
message. This is one proposal that  really should be passed around.

Proposed 28th Amendment to the United States Constitution:

"Congress shall make no law that applies to the citizens of the United States
that does not apply equally to the Senators and/or Representatives; and,
Congress shall make no law that applies to the Senators and/or Representatives
that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States ."

You are one of my 20+.

Keep it going.  


If I were sending out a call-to-arms in a serious email, I may use spell check, an editor, a person to look at the title, or even a seeing-eye dog to make sure the title conveys the proper gravity I was looking for. However, what on earth is an Amrndment? Were you not able to afford more vowels for the title person-who-wants-to-make-big-changes?

Aside from the title gaffe, the article seems to be well written and uses facts to warrant the claim. Facts, though, are generally true by nature, which helps to make them, well, facts. Snopes helped me to see that the claim of one-term Congressional retirement with full benefit is not possible and that the Healthcare Reform exemption is also not a true statement. In this game, two strikes, you're out. Unless you count the title, which makes at least another two strikes. My final word is to try spellcheck.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Five Minute Reseach Project

     Many people receive email and take the information contained within at face value.  Perhaps this is because we trust the person who sent the message to tell us the truth, or maybe it is because it came from the Internet, so it must be true. The reality is that often these messages are either false or contain an amalgamation of truth and fallacy, which changes the validity of the content altogether. My mission as the Slayer of B. S. is to spend five minutes validating or debunking the content of some of these messages sent via email. What follows is an example of my research.


A student at HBHS had pancakes this week and it almost became fatal. His
Mom (registered nurse) made him pancakes, dropped him off at school and
headed to play tennis. She never takes her cell phone on the court but
did this time and her son called to say he was having trouble breathing.
She told him to go to the nurse immediately and proceeded to call school
and alert the nurse. The nurse called the paramedics and they were there
in 3 minutes and worked on the boy all the way to the hospital. He came
so close to dying. Evidently this is more common then I ever knew. Check
the expiration dates on packages like pancakes and cake mixes that have
yeast which over time develop spores. 

WARNING ABOUT Pancake Mix (and other boxed mixes)

(maybe you already know this, I DID NOT !!) Talk about frightening. ...

Throw away ALL OUTDATED pancake mix you have in your home, PLEASE! If
you don't believe me, read this article and then follow the 'Link' below
to SNOPES. Sorry to be the Grim Reaper of bad news, but I would rather
have you ALIVE, besides a $2.00 box of pancake mix is NOT worth your

P. S. You might want to tell this to your children, grandchildren,
nephews, nieces and anyone else who keeps pancake mix in the cupboard.


From Snopes:  cause of death due to anaphylaxic shock reaction to
molds. I recently made a batch of pancakes for my healthy
14-year-old son, using a mix that was in our pantry. He said that they
tasted ' f unny,' but ate them anyway. About 10 minutes later, he began
having difficulty breathing and his lips began turning purple. I gave
him his allergy pill, had him sit on the sofa and told him to relax. He
was wheezing while inhaling and exhaling. My husband, a volunteer
Firefighter and EMT, heated up some water, and we had my son lean over
the water so the steam could clear his chest and sinuses. Soon, his
breathing became more regular and his lips returned to a more normal
color. We checked the date on the box of pancake mix and, to my dismay,
found it was very outdated. As a reference librarian at an academic
institution, I have the ability to search through many research
databases. I did just that, and found an article the next day that
mentioned a 19-year-old male DYING after eating pancakes made with
outdated mix. Apparently, the mold that forms in old pancake mix can be

When we told our friends about my son's close c all, we were surprised at
the number of people who mentioned that they should check their own
pancake mix since they don't use it often, or they had purchased it some
time ago. With so many people shopping at warehouse-type stores and
buying large sizes of pancake mix, I hope your readers will take the
time to check the expiration date on their boxes. Also, beware of
outdated Bisquick, cake, brownie and cookie mixes.


OK. I went ahead and read the ENTIRE Snopes article from the link pasted in the email. While there is truth to the scenario, the vintage pancake mix is really only effective as a poison for those who have allergies to mold. In other words, a yeast monster seeking to prey upon irresponsible shoppers will not grow in the cupboard from ancient pancake mix as the email would have us believe. So change the alert level back to green and pass me the syrup, it's breakfast time.