Impossible to ignore. News about Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell, who is on trial for murdering seven babies and one woman, is suddenly everywhere. Thanks in large part to complaints from pro-lifers about the lack of mainstream media coverage—a campaign that included a successful Twitter barrage that made #Gosnell one of the top trending tweeted terms Friday—media outlets all over the country have stories this morning to mark the start of the trial’s fifth week. It’s the top trending story on Google News, and outlets from The Washington Post to CBS News to small television stations on the West Coast are reporting on the gruesome testimony. Be sure to read WORLD’s ongoing coverage, including Andrée Seu Peterson’s reports from the courtroom.
Painting president. Former President George W. Bush is finally getting some attention for something other than his eight years in Washington. Unlike his predecessors, including his father, Bush disappeared from public life after handing the White House over to his successor. What’s he been doing with all his spare time? Painting. And he’s evidently not half bad. Art critics in Dallas have grudgingly given the former commander in chief props for his landscapes and pet portraits. Bush told The Dallas Morning News he was not too surprised that people are surprised he can paint. “Some people are surprised I can even read,” the former president quipped. Touché.
GOP benefactor dies. Longtime Bush supporter and much-appreciated friend of Republican fundraisers, Bob Perry, died over the weekend. He was 80. Perry, a homebuilder who made his fortune building cookie-cutter homes in rapidly expanding Texas neighborhoods, became best known later in life for the big checks he wrote to GOP candidates all across the country. Perry was a fixture of Texas politics dating back to the early 1990s, when he helped finance Bush’s gubernatorial campaigns. He crashed the national political stage in 2004 when he gave $4.4 million to the campaign the Swift Boat Veterans designed to discredit John Kerry’s service in Vietnam. Perry’s most recent beneficiaries included Mitt Romney, whose election campaign and related organizations received more than $18 million from the homebuilder.
Turkish Twitter trouble. A Turkish court convicted pianist and composer Fazil Say of blasphemy and inciting hatred over comments he made on Twitter last year about Islam. Say received a suspended 10-month sentence, although he could be jailed if he commits a similar offense in the next five years. Critics of Turkey’s government, including Say, say the ruling is just more evidence that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan wants to align the country more closely with Islamists.
Tweaking a tiger. This is bound to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula: Hacking group Anonymous announced Monday it had taken over several of North Korea’s official news sites. Three of them experienced noticeable service interruptions. Earlier this month, the group took control of a North Korean Twitter feed, posting links to pages poking fun at the country’s leader, Kim Jong Un. Anonymous says it wants the country to stop threatening nuclear war against the rest of the world. I’m not sure this is the best way to go about it.