FROM Rebecca Skloot
An Update on 'The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks' Henrietta Lacks was a poor black tobacco farmer who died in 1951 of cervical cancer. Unknown to her or her family, her cancer cells were saved and eventually used by scientists in 70 thousand experiments that created the polio vaccine, in vitro fertilization, live saving cancer drugs and other breakthroughs. Earlier this year, German scientists published a genetic map of her cells. Her family objected, citing privacy concerns. Now they've struck an historic agreement with the National Institutes of Health, where they will have a say in how the cells are used. The remarkable story is told in The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot.
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
The flight bumping heard around 'round the world Recent video of a passenger forcibly removed from a United Airlines plane is a worst-case example of what's happened since consolidation into just four US-based carriers. Management seems to be tone-deaf to a decline in service — and even abuse — of passengers.
"Tough on crime" rhetoric sees a revival at Sessions' DOJ The pendulum swings between treatment-focused approaches to drug abuse and tough law enforcement. Now, after years of Obama-era "reforms," President Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions wants local police freed from federal restrictions to fight another "war on drugs."