Thursday

November 15th, 2018

Diversions

Finer Points of the Law | He Just Won't Give Up

News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

By News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

Published August 31, 2017

Finer Points of the Law  | He Just Won't Give Up

"Oh, come on!" implored an exasperated Chief Justice Roberts in April when the Justice Department lawyer explained at oral argument that, indeed, a naturalized citizen could have his citizenship retroactively canceled just for breaking a single law, however minor -- even if there was never an arrest for it. Appearing incredulous, Roberts hypothesized that if "I drove 60 miles an hour in a 55-mile-an-hour zone," but was not caught and then became a naturalized citizen, years later the government "can knock on my door and say, 'Guess what? You're not an American citizen after all'?" The government lawyer stood firm. (The Supreme Court decision on the law's constitutionality is expected in June.) [New York Times, 4-27-2017]

Italian Surgeon Sergio Canavero (notorious as the world's most optimistic advocate of human brain transplants) now forecasts that a cryogenically frozen brain will be "awakened" ("thawed") and transplanted into a donor body by the year 2020. His Turin Advanced Neuromodulation Group claimed success in 2016 in transplanting a monkey's head, with blood vessels properly attached (though not the spinal cord). Canavero promised such a head transplant of humans by 2018, though problematic because, like the recipient monkey, the recipient human would not long survive. Of the subsequent brain transplant, one of the gentler critics of Canavero said the likelihood of success is "infinitestimal" -- with harsher critics describing it in more colorful language. [Daily Telegraph, 4-27-2017]

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles