Nation & world briefs, Aug. 29
Judge apologizes for remarks in rape case
A Montana judge yesterday stood by his decision to send a former teacher to prison for 30 days for raping a 14-year-old girl who later killed herself, but said he “deserved to be chastised” for his comments about the young victim.
District Judge G. Todd Baugh sentenced former Billings (Mont.) Senior High School teacher Stacey Rambold to 15 years, then suspended all but 31 days and gave him credit for one day already served.
In handing down the sentence Monday, Baugh said the teenage victim was “older than her chronological age” and had as much control of the situation as the teacher who raped her.
Faced with a backlash over the comments and calls for his resignation, Baugh, 71, wrote an apology in a letter to the editor of the Billings Gazette. He said his comments were demeaning of all women and not reflective of his beliefs.
Teachers’ protests cripple Mexico City
Mexico City has been brought to its knees, not by an earthquake or its ominous smoking volcanoes, but rather a small contingent of angry school teachers.
Some 10,000 educators protesting a government reform program have in the span of a week disrupted international air travel, forced the cancellation of two major soccer matches, rerouted the planned route of a marathon and snarled already traffic-choked freeways.
The cause of this upheaval is a government reform program that would subject teachers to periodic evaluations in the form of standardized tests, and end unions’ power over hiring. That would be a jolt to an education system in which some teachers can actually inherit their jobs from their parents.
Rare copy of Magna Carta to go on display
Nearly 800 years after the king of England tried to avert a civil war by issuing the Magna Carta, a rarely seen version of the document is coming to the United States, which enshrined many of the charter’s freedoms in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution.
Beginning in February, the delicate, yellowed parchment will be displayed for six months at the Houston Museum of Natural Science.
The chief executive of the British archive that holds the document said the trip might be the first time it has left Hereford, England, since it was issued in 1217, two years after the first version of the Magna Carta was distributed.
The Associated Press