Dispatches > Human Race
Sam Tageson
Nick Lust/NHLI/Getty Images
Sam Tageson

Human Race


Issue: "What price conscience?," April 19, 2014


The San Jose Sharks signed a 17-year-old fan to a one-day contract to fulfill his dream of playing for the California hockey team. Sam Tageson, who was born with only two chambers in his heart and will need a heart transplant, practiced with the squad and received his own jersey for a March 18 game against the Florida Panthers. He became the first nonplayer to skate onto the ice and be introduced with the rest of the team. The Make-A-Wish Foundation worked with the San Jose Sharks Foundation to make the teen’s memorable night happen. 


Charlotte, N.C., Mayor Patrick Cannon, 47, resigned from office on March 26 after he was arrested on corruption charges only 114 days into his tenure. Prosecutors say Cannon took more than $48,000 in bribes from undercover FBI agents who were posing as real estate developers. Cannon, who served 20 years on the city council, faces up to 20 years in prison and more than $1 million in fines. According to the local NBC affiliate, Cannon was shocked at his arrest and was not cooperating with investigators.


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Former Louisiana Gov.—and convicted felon—Edwin Edwards has launched a political comeback at age 86. The legendary Edwards, who spent more than eight years in prison for corruption, announced he is running for the U.S. House seat to represent Louisiana’s 6th Congressional District. Edwards had three tenures as the state’s governor spanning 16 years in the 1970s, ’80s, and ’90s. “I acknowledge there are good reasons I should not run,” he said. “But there are better reasons why I should.”


A Pakistani court on March 27 sentenced a Christian man to death under the country’s blasphemy law. Sawan Masih was sentenced in private due to the “sensitive nature” of the case, although last year when Masih’s Muslim acquaintance accused him of blasphemy, the allegation was blasted over mosque loudspeakers. The proclamation caused a riot, as a mob of 3,000 Muslims destroyed some 200 Christian homes in Lahore. Masih, who is appealing the ruling, maintains his innocence.


Former Vietnam POW and U.S. Sen. Jeremiah Denton, 89, died on March 28. Denton in June 1965 began flying combat missions for the U.S. Navy over Vietnam and was shot down the following month. He spent more than seven years as a prisoner of war, including at the infamous Hanoi Hilton, and alerted U.S. personnel to nightmarish conditions when he blinked “torture” in Morse code during a propaganda interview. Denton, elected to the Senate in 1980, was a strong pro-family legislator during his sole term in office. 


Thanks to a timely video, millions around the world have experienced the moment a 39-year-old British woman heard sounds for the first time. Joanne Milne, who was born deaf, received cochlear implants in late February, and a month later her speech therapist turned them on. Milne broke down sobbing as she heard the therapist say the days of the week. The breakthrough came just in time for Milne: The rare condition that caused her to be born deaf, Usher syndrome, started taking away her sight 10 years ago.


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