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Archive for Monday, November 27, 2006

People in the News

November 27, 2006

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Yoko Ono calls for day of worldwide healing

New York - Yoko Ono is calling for the anniversary of the death of her husband, John Lennon, to become a day of worldwide healing.

In a full-page advertisement appearing in Sunday editions of The New York Times, Ono urges readers to mark the anniversary by apologizing to those who have suffered because of violence and war.

"Every year, let's make December 8th the day to ask for forgiveness from those who suffered the insufferable," writes the former Beatle's widow, who signs the letter Yoko Ono Lennon.

Ono urges readers to take responsibility for failing to intervene on behalf of victims around the world.

"Know that the physical and mental abuse you have endured will have a lingering effect on our society," she writes in a portion of the letter directed to victims. "Know that the burden is ours."

Ono was with Lennon when he was gunned down as he returned home from a recording studio on Dec. 8, 1980. The shooter, Mark David Chapman, remains in New York's Attica state prison. His fourth request for parole was denied last month.

Of her own loss, Ono says: "I don't know if I am ready yet to forgive the one who pulled the trigger. ... But healing is what is urgently needed now in the world."

Michael Richards 'shattered' by anger-fueled remark

New York - Michael Richards said Sunday he did not consider himself a racist, and said he was "shattered" by the comments he made to two young black men during a tirade at a Los Angeles comedy club.

Richards appeared on the Rev. Jesse Jackson's nationally syndicated radio program, "Keep Hope Alive," as a part of a series of apologies for the incident. He said he knew his comments hurt the black community and hoped to meet with the two men.

He told Jackson that he had not used the language before.

"That's why I'm shattered by it. The way this came through me was like a freight train. After it was over, when I went to look for them, they had gone. And I've tried to meet them, to talk to them, to get some healing," he said.

Richards, who played Jerry Seinfeld's wacky neighbor Kramer on the TV sitcom "Seinfeld," was performing at West Hollywood's Laugh Factory last week when he lashed out at hecklers with a string of racial obscenities and profane language. A cell phone video camera captured the outburst, and the incident later appeared on TMZ.com.

Richards told Jackson the tirade was fueled by anger, not bigotry. He said, "I was in a place of humiliation."

Job Corps helped turn Foreman from life of crime

Grants Pass, Ore. - George Foreman says Grants Pass is where he started to turn his life around.

Foreman said he was headed for a life of crime in Texas when he saw a TV ad with football players Jim Brown and John Unitas touting the Job Corps, a federal program for troubled youths. Foreman landed at a Job Corps facility called Fort Vannoy at what is now Rogue Community College.

"When you hear me say 'Grants Pass, Oregon,' it was like the beginning of me," Foreman, 57, said in a recent interview the Grants Pass Daily Courier.

Foreman spent six months with the Job Corps in Grants Pass in the mid-1960s. He would go on to win an Olympic gold medal in 1968 and become heavyweight champion of the world in 1973.

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