Tuesday's intriguing people
Rep. Anthony Weiner's wife, Huma Abedin, assists Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, right, during congressional testimony.
June 7th, 2011
11:51 AM ET

Tuesday's intriguing people

Huma Abedin

The wife of Rep. Anthony Weiner is a central, and silent, figure since her husband's sexting admission Monday. Many have asked: Will their 11-month-old marriage survive?

The Washington Post column The Reliable Source praised Abedin for not appearing alongside Weiner on Monday as the suffering wife.

Abedin, 34, was born in Michigan, grew up in Saudi Arabia and returned to the United States to attend college, according to the New York Daily News. Her late father, a college professor, was from India and her mother, also a professor, was born in Pakistan.

A headline Tuesday on the ethnic news site New America Media asked, "Will Huma Abedin Remain Weiner's Good South Asian Wife?"

Abedin is a longtime senior aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, starting out as an intern to the first lady in 1996, according to a 2007 Vogue magazine profile. Abedin and Weiner met during Clinton's 2008 campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, the Daily News said.

Not only did Clinton throw Abedin and Weiner an engagement party, but former President Bill Clinton officiated at their wedding. Abedin is Muslim and Weiner is Jewish.

"Abedin has the energy of a woman in her 20s," Clinton said in the Vogue article, "the confidence of a woman in her 30s, the experience of a woman in her 40s and the grace of a woman in her 50s."

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Monday's intriguing people
Albertina Sisulu and husband, Walter Sisulu, smile for the camera after Walter's 1989 release from prison.
June 6th, 2011
11:11 AM ET

Monday's intriguing people

Albertina Sisulu

The mother of South Africa’s anti-apartheid movement has died. “Ma Sisulu,” as she was known throughout the movement, was 92 years old. As the wife of Walter Sisulu, an anti-apartheid activist and mentor to Nelson Mandela, she supported him during 26 years of imprisonment on Robben Island, often being imprisoned and harassed herself, The New York Times reported. In 1956, she organized the historic protest by 20,000 women that is now marked each August 9 as a national holiday called Women’s Day, The Times said. In 1994, she was elected to South Africa’s parliament, where her son, Max, is now speaker of the National Assembly. Daughter Lindiwe Sisulu serves as the nation’s defense minister, and another daughter, Beryl, is the country’s ambassador to Norway. Walter Sisulu died in 2003.

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Monday's intriguing people
Mary Hart retired last week after 29 years as the host of the syndicated "Entertainment Tonight."
May 23rd, 2011
11:42 AM ET

Monday's intriguing people

Departing TV anchors and hosts

The end of Oprah Winfrey's run as the queen of talk isn't television's only iconic departure. Last week, Mary Hart left  "Entertainment Tonight" after 29 years, and Katie Couric hosted her final broadcast as anchor of the "CBS Evening News."

The week was punctuated by the news that Jim Lehrer, the longtime host of "PBS NewsHour," would leave as well. Next up will be Meredith Vieira's final day on the "Today" show in June. And later this year, Regis Philbin is set to leave "Live," which he has hosted in syndication for nearly 30 years.

The Chicago Tribune's Phil Rosenthal noted the best farewells are usually the shortest ones. However, Winfrey's two-day extravaganza, which begins Monday, is an exception because it is a graduation of sorts, he said. Winfrey moves on to her network OWN. Whether her viewers will follow remains to be seen.

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Friday's intriguing people
NBC Sports executive Dick Ebersol was inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame with the 2006 class.
May 20th, 2011
10:40 AM ET

Friday's intriguing people

Dick Ebersol

Along with ABC's Roone Arledge, Ebersol has defined the art of network sports coverage. Ebersol transformed the Olympic Games from a distant event into must-see TV that had an impact on all of broadcast journalism.

Thus, Ebersol's abrupt resignation as chairman of NBC Sports is a blow to the modern Olympic movement, said Bill Dwyre of the Los Angeles Times. Ebersol is to the Olympic Games  and athletes "as butter is to bread," Dwyre said.

"What he has done has been a service to athletes globally," Peter Ueberroth, the former U.S. Olympic Committee chairman and head of the 1984 Los Angeles Games, told the Los Angeles paper.

For NBC, the timing is horrible. Ebersol's resignation comes a few weeks before the International Olympic Committee holds a meeting with U.S. networks to decide on broadcast rights for the 2014 and 2016 Games.

Neither Ebersol nor NBC revealed what prompted his resignation, although The New York Times, which first reported the story, said Ebersol, 63, could not agree on a new contract with Comcast, which merged with NBC in January.

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Monday's intriguing people
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is charged with finding money to keep the government afloat until August.
May 16th, 2011
11:34 AM ET

Monday's intriguing people

Timothy Geithner

The U.S. government hits its credit limit of $14.3 trillion Monday, and the U.S. Treasury secretary will begin scrambling to find cash to float the government until August 2. While budget negotiations are being led by Vice President Joseph Biden, Geithner estimates that at least $2 trillion is needed to keep the government running. NPR's Jacob Goldstein estimates that to balance the budget, taxes will have to be raised or spending will need to be cut. By itself, spending would need to be cut by 40 percent, which is equivalent to "every penny" of discretionary spending, including the defense budget, Goldstein said.

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Monday's intriguing people
Sean Avery, right, with Josh Gorges, is known as an intimidating force in the NHL. He's tapping that reputation in a gay rights ad.
May 9th, 2011
11:18 AM ET

Monday's intriguing people

Sean Avery

The Human Rights Campaign issued a video ad featuring the hockey player supporting same-sex marriage for New Yorkers. In the spot, the New York Rangers winger says that committed adults should have a right to marry the one they love.

Though he isn't gay, he lived in West Hollywood in California and Chelsea in New York, respectively, while playing for the Los Angeles Kings and Rangers. Many of his friends are gay, he said in an interview.

Few are surprised Avery, one of the most intimidating players in the NHL, would lend his voice. When asked about gay players in the NHL in February, Avery told the Toronto Sun, “I'll stand beside him in the dressing room while he tells his teammates he is gay. Maybe if Sean Avery is there, they would have less of a problem with it."

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Wednesday's Most Intriguing People
Tweets by Pittsburgh's Rashard Mendenhall, shown here days before the Super Bowl in February, have caused a firestorm.
May 4th, 2011
11:25 AM ET

Wednesday's Most Intriguing People

Rashard Mendenhall

The Pittsburgh Steelers running back is in hot water after he made some controversial statements about Osama bin Laden's death via Twitter.

"What kind of person celebrates death? It's amazing how people can HATE a man they have never even heard speak. We've only heard one side..." Mendenhall tweeted Monday, referencing bin Laden.

Steelers President Art Rooney II released a statement Tuesday, published in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, condemning Mendenhall's remarks, ESPN reports.

"I have not spoken with Rashard so it is hard to explain or even comprehend what he meant with his recent Twitter comments," Rooney said. "The entire Steelers organization is very proud of the job our military personnel have done and we can only hope this leads to our troops coming home soon."

Zarar Ahmed

The 12-year-old from Abbottabad, Pakistan, was Osama bin Laden’s neighbor and regularly visited the al Qaeda leader’s family, reports the London Evening Standard. Zarar described the security of the compound, as well as the family members he met, in an interview with Sky News. Bin Laden’s family included two wives: one who spoke Arabic and one who spoke Urdu. There were three children, a girl and two boys, Ahmed said. The family gave him two rabbits, he added.

The man who killed Osama bin Laden

He’s the most iconic person you will never know, according to the Washington Post’s Manuel Roig-Franzia. This week, the Post offered a composite of the "humble warrior" who killed the world’s most-wanted terrorist.

He is a "tactical athlete." Ripped, with a lot of upper-body strength, gnarled hands, long arms and a flat tummy, said Richard Marcinko, a Navy SEAL veteran and a founder of the elite Team 6, which reportedly led the attack. One minute, the professional is mowing his lawn. The next, he is on assignment — and there’s no crew cut. “He’s bearded, rough-looking,” Marcinko said. “You don’t want to stick out.”

The SEAL is probably between 26 and 33 years old, Marcinko said: young enough to be meet the physical demands but highly experienced in counterterrorism. He is a man; there are no female SEALS. He is also probably white, though the SEALs have diversified recently, Marcinko added.

The shooter also keeps tabs on his actions, said Stew Smith, another SEAL interviewed. Smith recently met with five other SEALs who could account for 250 terrorist kills between them. Still, this is THE kill, and his colleagues know it. “This is playing the Super Bowl and getting the Oscar in one breath,” Marcinko said. “He wants credit — but only among his peers.”

Jose Rodriguez

The CIA’s former counterterrorism czar told Time magazine that the intelligence that led authorities to Osama bin Laden's compound was obtained by using "enhanced interrogation techniques" on both Khalid Sheikh Mohammad and Abu Faraj al Libbi. The tactics included waterboarding, sleep deprivation and "other techniques," said Rodriguez, who is writing a book. Abu Faraj was not waterboarded, Rodriguez told Time in his first public interview.

An Obama administration official has denied Rodriguez's assertion that "enhanced interrogation techniques" were used.

“There is no way that information obtained by (enhanced interrogation techniques) was the decisive intelligence that led us directly to bin Laden,” National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said. “It took years of collection and analysis from many different sources to develop the case that enabled us to identify this compound and reach a judgment that bin Laden was likely to be living there.”

Tuesday's intriguing people
Ex-Pakistani leader Pervez Musharraf says second-guessing his country's role in the war on terror damages U.S.-Pakistani ties.
May 3rd, 2011
11:18 AM ET

Tuesday's intriguing people

Pervez Musharraf

Pakistan's former president appeared on CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360°" on Monday evening, offering a curious, if not contradictory account of his views on Osama bin Laden's whereabouts in recent years. A key ally in the U.S. war on terror until his ouster in 2008, Musharraf said he’d always known that bin Laden was in either Afghanistan or Pakistan. That remark drew protests from host Anderson Cooper who insisted that Musharraf always denied that his country was harboring the terrorist.

“Anyone who said (bin Laden’s) in Pakistan also didn't have the intelligence (to prove it)," Musharraf said. “(Bin Laden being in Pakistan) was not based on any intelligence. It was guesswork."

Musharraf then blamed intelligence sources for the fact that bin Laden was in an urban area, so close to the Pakistan Military Academy and the capital of Islamabad not in an Afghan cave, as many had speculated. Second-guessing Pakistan’s cooperation in the war on terror only destroys trust between Pakistan and the U.S., he said.

Musharraf finished the interview by saying that while eliminating bin Laden is a good thing for "peace-loving people," having the U.S. military enter Pakistan doesn’t go “with Pakistan's sensitivities.”

“We cannot indicate in any form that we are willing to compromise on our sovereignty like that,” he said.

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Wednesday's intriguing people
Leon Panetta was a congressman and President Bill Clinton's chief of staff before becoming CIA director.
April 27th, 2011
03:24 PM ET

Wednesday's intriguing people

Leon Panetta

The CIA director will be President Barack Obama's nominee to succeed Robert Gates as defense secretary, a senior defense official and another U.S. official said Wednesday.

Panetta will be named as a nominee for U.S. defense secretary, CNN has confirmed. Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, will be tapped as Panetta's replacement at the CIA, a senior defense official said.

Panetta is a prolific public servant. For 14 years, he was a U.S. congressman from California, ultimately becoming chairman of the House Budget committee. He later was director of the Office of Management and Budget and then President Bill Clinton's chief of staff. Early in his career, the Santa Clara University alum was an aide to a U.S. senator and an assistant in the government’s civil rights unit in the 1960s. Panetta won a an Army Commendation Medal while serving as an Army intelligence officer from 1964-1966.

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Friday's intriguing people
Mel Gibson opened up about regret, acting, Hollywood, friends, fame and his private life.
April 22nd, 2011
11:34 AM ET

Friday's intriguing people

Mel Gibson

The actor/director (pictured) has given his first interview since a 2010 audio recording was released with him verbally assailing Oksana Grigorieva, the mother of his young daughter. The interview appeared late Thursday night on Deadline.com.

Gibson was funny, abashed and even melancholy —"Just Mel being Mel," reporter Allison Hope Weiner said. He took responsibility for his recent actions; played down charges of racism; and reconciled with the legal and social consequences he's facing to avoid humiliating his family. He accepted those who have ostracized him in the industry and thanked people like Whoopi Goldberg who publicly supported him.

Gibson also spoke frankly about the future of his public life. While his appearance in "The Beaver," directed by ally Jodie Foster and releasing May 6, is considered one of the best of his career, Gibson will spend most of his time writing. "I don't care if I don't act anymore," he said.

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Wednesday's intriguing people
Pia Toscano, formerly of "American Idol," will reportedly appear on "Dancing with the Stars."
April 20th, 2011
11:57 AM ET

Wednesday's intriguing people

Pia Toscano

Viewers were shocked when the American Idol prospect was ousted from the top 10 last month. Last night, it was announced that the singer will appear on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” on Tuesday.
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Tuesday's intriguing people
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal says he would sign a bill requiring presidential candidates to prove they were born in the U.S.
April 19th, 2011
10:53 AM ET

Tuesday's intriguing people

Gov. Bobby Jindal

The same day that Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer announced she'd veto that state's "birther bill," her counterpart in Louisiana said he would sign similar legislation into law. According to the New Orleans Times-Picayune, the Louisiana bill requires candidates to qualify for a federal election in that state by providing an original or certified copy of a birth certificate. "I don't purport to be a 'birther,'" said the bill's co-author, Rep. Alan Seabaugh of Shreveport. "This is from the standpoint of cleaning up an area of the law where there appears to be a gap."

Grete Waitz

On Monday, the running world marveled at the performance of 29-year-old Kenyan George Mutai  for his record-setting time of 2:03.02 at the Boston Marathon. Tuesday morning that same community, and much of the world, is remembering Grete Waitz. In 1978, Waitz ran her first New York City Marathon, and shattered the existing women's world record by two minutes (2:32.30). The Norwegian went on to win eight more New York City Marathons. Her image appears on the current New York Marathon medals and many consider her the greatest champion the event has ever had. Waitz died of cancer this morning in Oslo, Norway, the Washington Post reported. She was 57.

Dan Glick

The former Newsweek correspondent and veteran independent journalist used his blog Monday to defend "Three Cups of Tea" author Greg Mortenson, whose truthfulness was called into question in an online article by Jon Krakauer and a "60 Minutes" segment Sunday night.

Glick said he witnessed Mortenson's hands-on work with his Central Asia Institute in Pakistan and Afghanistan in 1998. On Monday, Glick called Krakauer's article, "Three Cups of Deceit", an online assassination of the controversial writer/humanitarian. Glick also charged that the "60 Minutes" segment lacked "basic elements of fairness, balance, perspective, insight and context."

Mortenson has likely blurred the lines of reality in his book, Glick acknowledged. Also, Mortenson is "probably ill-suited to run a $20 million-a-year nonprofit," Glick wrote. Yet Mortenson's "bridge building" to the Islamic world has been immeasurable, he wrote. Mortenson's travels to and investment in the isolated region, as well as his awareness campaigns, have done much more good than harm, Glick said. "The same cannot be said for a lot of NGOs doing development work around the world, " he added,  "much less our military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan."

Don Most, Anson Williams, Marion Ross and Erin Moran

The four supporting cast members of the TV program "Happy Days" charge that the show's owner, CBS, has failed to pay royalties on merchandising items bearing their likenesses since the show's 1974 debut. A CNN/CNNMoney.com investigation reveals that the cast members  along with the estate of the late actor Tom Bosley have not received payment for such items, particularly casino slot machines developed in 2008. "Someone came up to me and said, 'You must be cleaning up on those casinos,'" Ross said, describing how she first learned of the games. "He said, 'If you get five Marions, you get the jackpot."'

Friday's intriguing people
Vintage American cars are a common sight in Cuba, but that could change under reforms by Raul Castro.
April 15th, 2011
12:05 PM ET

Friday's intriguing people

Raul Castro

For the first time since 1997, Cuba's Communist Party Congress will meet this weekend, marking the official debut of Fidel Castro's brother as its leader.

As NPR reports, Raul Castro is expected to propose radical reform measures. One, which may launch a real estate boom, will allow Cubans to buy and sell homes.

Also, the party is likely to lift the ban on the sale of automobiles made after 1959.  Such a move could trigger culture shock in a country where hulking American-made sedans from the 1950s are an everyday sight.

"These cars are part of our national identity – like beans, rice and pork," mechanic Jorge Prats told NPR. "We take care of these old American cars as if they were a member of our family."

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Wednesday's intriguing people
Former major-league slugger Jose Canseco will become the player-manager for a minor-league team.
April 13th, 2011
11:24 AM ET

Wednesday's intriguing people

Jose Canseco

Considered the face of Major League Baseball's "era of steroid abuse," the former slugger will be named today as player-manager for the Yuma (Arizona) Scorpions, a minor league team with the North American League, the Yuma Sun reports.

"I think it's exciting for Yuma," league President Kevin Outcalt said. "It's going to be a lot of fun. Jose is a very accomplished player, he has a lot of sway in the media and in pop culture, and he's bringing that to the city. It will be a good team and a fun time at Desert Sun Stadium for the fans."

Canseco hit 462 home runs in a 17-year major-league career with the Oakland A's and several other teams. His 2005 book "Juiced" blew the lid off the use of performance-enhancing drugs by pro ballplayers, including himself.

Canseco's twin brother, Ozzie, who played just a handful of games in the major leagues, will also play and coach for the Scorpions.

Joseph Massino

The "Last Don" of the New York Bonanno crime family broke the code of silence Tuesday in a Manhattan federal court. During his testimony, Massino became "the first mob boss in history to turn stoolie," the New York Post wrote.

Massino was arrested in 2004 and is now in prison. He revealed that he became an FBI informant to avoid the death penalty and to protect his wife from prosecution.

Massino then identified Vincent Basciano as his hand-picked successor, confirming that Basciano ordered the killing of an associate.

Massino also detailed his own history with organized crime, which began when he was 12; his own recruitment in the 1970s by a former Bonanno mob boss; and how he personally led the Bonannos through scandals that included the "Donnie Brasco" FBI sting and the "Three Captains" murders. Massino continues his testimony today.

Pete Peterson

The former Richard Nixon aide, "Mad Men" ad exec and Wall Street billionaire has spent 30 years speaking out about the country's debt and dependence on entitlement programs. He's written books, given speeches and even donated a billion of his own dollars to fund a foundation to solve the problem. So what does the 84-year-old "godfather of our nation's finances" think of the Tea Party? "I don't know much about them," he recently told The New York Times.

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Friday's intriguing people
Entertainer Billy Joel has canceled the publication of his memoirs, saying he'd rather look forward than back.
April 1st, 2011
02:27 PM ET

Friday's intriguing people

BILLY JOEL

The Piano Man has surprised the entertainment and publishing industries by returning a substantial book advance and deciding against publishing his memoirs, the New York Post reported.

"The Book of Joel" was to be released by Harper Collins in June, CNN has confirmed. Yesterday, however, Joel announced the deal was off and the advance returned.

Joel has long struggled with alcoholism. In a February Rolling Stone interview, frequent touring partner Elton John chastised Joel for not getting clean.

Regarding the decision to shelve the book, Joel told CNN: "It took working on writing a book to make me realize that I'm not all that interested in talking about the past, and that the best expression of my life and its ups and downs has been and remains my music."

TIM NAFTALI

For 20 years, the privately funded Richard M. Nixon Presidential Library played down Nixon's role in the Watergate scandal that led to his 1974 resignation.

Two years ago, however, the museum came under the auspices of the U.S. National Archives, and on Thursday, a newly renovated wing of the Watergate Galley was opened.

According to USA Today, the $500,000 makeover includes elements such as the lock-picking tools used to burglarize the Democratic National Committee's offices. It also features the microphones Nixon had planted around the Oval Office and the audio proving Nixon's role in the cover-up.

According to Tim Naftali, the library's executive director: "The public deserves an objective, nonpartisan museum for their money."

MICHAEL KOSKO

The state worker who'd faithfully spent $2 weekly on his office lottery pool, yet passed on it the time his colleagues won the $319 million Mega Millions jackpot, told the New York Post on Thursday he had only one explanation for his bad luck: "I didn't have two singles."

DAVID SOKOL

The New York Times reported Friday that the man once deemed Warren Buffett's successor at Berkshire Hathaway resigned this week after disclosing that he'd purchased some $10 million in shares of Lubrizol just days before Berkshire acquired it.

Sokol, called one of Buffett's brightest utility players, approached Buffett in January suggesting that Berkshire buy the lubricant manufacturer, the Times reported. During the conversation, Sokol also mentioned that he owned the company's stock. After Berkshire's $9 billion purchase, Sokol made a $3 million profit.

In a statement, Buffett expressed his support for Sokol and insisted he did nothing unlawful. He added, however, that he assumed Sokol had owned Lubrizol stock for years, not days.
mega millions numbers
Critics now wonder if Berkshire needs tighter controls. As Buffett himself wrote in a July 2010 memo to his managers: "We can afford to lose money—even a lot of money. But we can't afford to lose reputation—even a shred of reputation."

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Thursday's intriguing people
Moussa Koussa fled to London on Wednesday and said he had resigned as Libya's foreign minister.
March 31st, 2011
10:52 AM ET

Thursday's intriguing people

Moussa Koussa

Libya's foreign minister and its former intelligence chief shocked the diplomatic world Wednesday with his sudden defection to the United Kingdom.

According to CNN homeland security analyst Fran Townsend, Koussa played a key role in planning and executing the Pam Am 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988. He also was integral in negotiating the dismantling of Libya's weapons of mass destruction program.

"Koussa is one of the most senior figures in [Libyan leader Moammar] Gadhafi's government, and his role was to represent the regime internationally," a British government official said in a statement, "something that he is no longer willing to do."

Rihanna

Rolling Stone on Wednesday published the most revealing interview with singer Rihanna since her 2009 battery incident with then-boyfriend Chris Brown.

In a risqué photo spread, the singer defined her self-imposed boundaries with Brown, despite agreeing to end a restraining order that she feels has hurt him professionally.

Most eye-opening however, was the singer's acknowledgment that she is prone to masochism in her sexual relationships, and via her multiple tattoos and piercings. She attributed it to verbal abuse from her father and the stress of her career.

"It's not something I am proud of, and it's not something I noticed until recently," she told Rolling Stone. "I think it's common for people who witness abuse in their household. They can never smell how beautiful a rose is unless they get pricked by a thorn."

Gregory Hollister

The retired U.S. Air Force colonel has obtained what he believes is a copy of President Barack Obama's draft documents from 1980 by impersonating the president to the Selective Service Office.

According to a news report in the Colorado Springs Gazette, which was originally reported in the blog Gratewire, Hollister used a private investigator to obtain what may be the president's Social Security number, and then impersonated Obama to obtain the documents.

Further buoying Hollister's suspicions are reports that the Social Security number obtained begins with 042. That, says Hollister, would mean Obama was born in Connecticut, not Hawaii as long stated.

While critics say Hollister has violated many federal statutes, he maintains his innocence.

"I was very meticulous and made sure everything I did was compliant with the law," he told the Gazette.

Alye Pollack

A YouTube video posted March 14 by the 13-year-old from Westport, Connecticut, in which she speaks out about bullying, has gained nearly 50,000 views.

During her plea, Pollack says that name-calling is a large part of the problem. She emphasizes her point by writing the vulgarities on paper with crayon and showing them to her audience.

"I used to be really, really confident," Pollack says in the video, "and now, not so much because people use these words."

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Friday's intriguing people
Susan Lucci has played Erica Kane on "All My Children" since 1970.
March 25th, 2011
11:35 AM ET

Friday's intriguing people

Susan Lucci

The star of ABC’s "All My Children" has played Erica Kane since the show kicked off in 1970. Now, according to industry blog Deadline.com, the 41-year-old soap opera may be facing cancellation. Ratings are reportedly at an all-time low in the 18- to 49-year-old women demographic, and they're down 34% from last year. The fate of Lucci and the rest of the show's cast could come as early as this fall, Deadline reports.

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Wednesday's intriguing people
Gov. Jerry Brown says he wants California voters to decide if tax extensions are the way to cure the state's budget ills.
March 23rd, 2011
11:06 AM ET

Wednesday's intriguing people

Jerry Brown

California’s governor used YouTube this week to discuss the state’s budget woes. He is calling for a special election for voters to decide between tax extensions or cuts in state services. “This is a matter of we the people taking charge and voting on the most fundamental matters that affect all our lives,” Brown said in the YouTube video.

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Tuesday's intriguing people
Dallas Wiens, in a handout photo from Brigham and Women's Hospital, arrives in Boston to prepare for face-transplant surgery.
March 22nd, 2011
11:37 AM ET

Tuesday's intriguing people

Dallas Wiens

The 25-year-old construction worker received a full face transplant last week at Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital.

Wiens, of Fort Worth, Texas, was severely burned in 2008 when the cherry picker he was using to paint a church touched electrical wires. He lost his nose, teeth, one eye, his lips and the muscles that generate facial expressions, The Boston Globe reported. He also lost the vision in his remaining eye.

"Dallas always said after the injury that he now had a choice. He could choose to get bitter or he could choose to get better," Wiens' grandfather, Del Peterson, said during a hospital press conference, according to the Globe. "His choice was better."

In a 15-hour operation involving 30 specialists, Wiens received the face of a donor whose age, skin tone and blood type matched his, the Globe reported.

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Monday's intriguing people
Director Michael Moore addresses protesters Saturday at the Wisconsin Capitol in Madison.
March 7th, 2011
11:21 AM ET

Monday's intriguing people

Michael Moore

The filmmaker behind the Oscar-winning documentary "Bowling for Columbine" appeared before union activists in Wisconsin and praised them for "arousing a sleeping giant," the Wisconsin State Journal reported. Moore addressed at least 30,000 protesters, urging them to continue their demonstrations against Gov. Scott Walker's budget proposals. "America is not broke," he told the crowd, according to the Madison newspaper. "The only thing that's broke is the moral compass of the rulers."

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