4pm KFAI News Update


Obama Administration Calls for Rules Changes

As part of a federal response to the controversy surrounding the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri., the Obama administration called for new rules today on federal money that local law enforcement agencies use to buy equipment, including military items.

USA Today says a new report from the Administration did not explicitly call for a ban on the use of military equipment by police,  but did recommend that equipment financed by federal money have "a legitimate civilian law enforcement purpose."   

The administration released the report on the same day that Obama discussed its findings with Cabinet members, civil rights leaders and local law enforcement officials.

The administration also proposed  new federal assistance to local law enforcement, including a plan for 50,000 new body cameras to be worn by officers.


Bedding Study - NY Times

A new study published in the journal Pediatrics today says nearly 55 percent of infants nationwide are put to bed with soft blankets or covered by a comforter, even though such bedding raises the chances of suffocation or sudden infant death syndrome.

The New York Times reports that this new research is the first to estimate how many infants sleep with potentially hazardous quilts, bean bags, blankets or pillows. The study found that despite recommendations to avoid putting anything but a baby in a crib, two-thirds of black and Latino parents still use bedding that is both unnecessary and unsafe.

Dr. Michael Goodstein, a neonatologist in York, Pennyslvania who serves on a task force on sleep-related infant deaths said he was “alarmed” at the findings.  “Sleeping face down on soft bedding increases the risks of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome  21-fold.”

The study surveyed a random sample of nearly 19,000 parents by telephone.


Lauten Resigns Over Facebook Flap - Washington Post

Congressional staffer Elizabeth Lauten has resigned over the backlash to critical remarks she posted on Facebook last week about President Obama’s daughters.

The Washington Post says Lauten, communications director for Republican Representative Stephen Fincher of Tennessee, apologized for her comments but it wasn’t enough, and she stepped down from her position today.

Lauten chastised Sasha and Malia Obama for their clothing and attitude during a ritual White House ceremony where the president pardons a couple of turkeys before Thanksgiving.

Lauten’s derogatory remarks about the girls, aged 16 and 13, quickly spread on Facebook and prompted critics to claim that the Republican staffer had turned the teenagers into political targets.

In her apology, Lauten said "When I first posted on Facebook I reacted to an article and I quickly judged the two young ladies in a way that I would never have wanted to be judged myself as a teenager."

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