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A sucker born every minute

National | What do "Rep. Tony Schnell" and "Blare Airport" have in common? They're both fakes.

Issue: "UNbelievable," June 17, 2000

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Congress is ready to pass Bill 602P, imposing a 5-cent tax on every e-mail sent in the United States. The hoax includes a fictitious cast of characters, including a nonexistent Republican congressman, Tony Schnell. Janet Reno Quote
Janet Reno said on 60 Minutes that Christian beliefs, homeschooling, and distrust of the government qualify someone as a cultist. 60 Minutes, however, has no record of this. Anti-Perspirant Link to Breast Cancer
Deodorants keep the body from purging toxins, which are then stored in the lymph nodes and cause breast cancer. The American Cancer Society reports that lymph nodes do not clear toxins from the body by sweating. No studies suggest deodorant use is a risk factor for breast cancer. Toilet Spiders
Deadly spiders from South America are lurking under the seats of Chicago airport toilets. The message quotes a "Dr. Beverly Clark" writing in a "Journal of the United Medical Association," both fictitious. The spider-bite incidents took place in "Big Chappies" restaurant and "Blare Airport," both also nonexistent. Sick Child
A child (name varies) is dying of some disease (disease varies) and asks if you could find it in your heart to send a get-well card, or business card, or in some way help him or her break a world record. One version has the Make a Wish Foundation donating 7 cents to the child's medical expenses every time someone forwards the e-mail. Madalyn Murray O'Hair
There she goes again. The famed atheist is trying to bully the FCC into banning religious broadcasting. This hoax is a play on Petition RM-2493. Defeated in 1975, RM-2493 had nothing to do with getting religion off the radio or Ms. O'Hair, who has been missing since 1996 and is presumed dead.

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