September 30th, 2010
12:05 PM ET

Thursday's intriguing people

Dan Savage

The Seattle-based author and “Savage Love” advice columnist has launched a YouTube channel that allows gays, lesbians and their straight allies to post messages of encouragement to young teens and tweens questioning or struggling with their sexuality. The site, launched September 15, features at least 200 videos and is part of an effort to deter gay youths from committing suicide. There have been about 500,000 views of the channel so far, with more than 6,000 people subscribing to it.

Savage, considered one of few gay relationship columnists in the country, posted his own video September 21. In it, he and a friend named Terry share their own stories of growing up gay. They talk about religious conflicts with family members, keeping secrets and facing unspeakable episodes of harassment in high school. “What I want people to take away from this is that it gets better,” Savage urged his viewers, “But you have to tough this period of your life out, and you have to live your life so that you’re around for it to get amazing — and it can.”

YouTube: It Gets Better project

Susan Jordan's family

They have waited nearly 30 years for the sentence of their daughter’s killer to be carried out. Technicalities, however, will force the family of Susan Jordan to wait more.

On Wednesday, California’s Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation delayed the execution of Albert Greenwood Brown because there was no way a judge would be able to issue an order before Friday. Drugs needed to perform the lethal injection expire Friday, and will not be replaced until 2011, a spokesman said.

The family has yet to respond to this latest news. In early September, however, they wrote letters both to Brown and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger describing the harrowing effect 30 years of waiting has had on their lives. The letters were obtained by Riverside affiliate KESQ.

In her letter to Brown, Angelina Jordan, Susan's mother, said the delays have placed attention unfairly on Brown, rather than on her daughter. Susan was 15 when she was raped and strangled by Brown in a grove as she walked home from school. “You and your lawyers have had the audacity to plead for your life by unjustly dragging out your sentence for 30 years,” she wrote. “Your day of accountability is now upon you. The Jordan family will be watching.”

Susan’s siblings, James Jordan and Karen Jane Brown, wrote separate letters to Schwarzenegger. They mourned for their father, who died 14 years ago with no sense of justice. The two also wrote poignantly of their older brother Brian, who was 19 at the time of Susan's slaying and refused to give his sister a ride home from high school the day she died. Brian “has been emotionally and mentally troubled by this event ever since,” Karen said. “It will only be when Brown is executed that “my family would have closure and justice would truly be served,” James added.

Los Angeles Times: California Supreme Court ends legal battle over execution

Flemming Rose

In 2005, the Denmark-based newspaper Jyllands-Posten published 12 cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed. The illustrations by artist Kurt Westergaard set off international demonstrations, violence and even caused deaths across Europe and other parts of the world. Many Muslims believe it is heresy to picture Mohammed, and a cartoon of a man with a bomb in his turban was certainly provocative.

Today, Flemming Rose, the paper’s cultural editor, released a book about the decision to publish the cartoons and the response that occurred. "The Tyranny of Silence" republishes all 12 of the cartoons, reports CNN.The response to the book has been swift, with diplomats from Denmark meeting with Muslim leaders in 17 countries. While Denmark will not interrupt the book’s release, it doesn’t want a repeat of 2005, when Danish embassies were temporarily shut down, officials said.

Rose has long favored free speech over cultural sensitivity. However, he told reporters Wednesday: “By reproducing this page, I did not intend to offend or insult anybody. [But] those cartoons are part of history."

CNN: New book reprints controversial Mohammed cartoons

Washington Post: Rose's column: "Why I published those cartoons"

soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. Gail Snail

    My condoleneces to the Jordan family for the loss of their daughter. Unfortunately, the criminal has more rights than the victim. The Death Penalty is a joke because the criminals often die of old age while sitting on Death Row, using 1 appeal after the next. Too bad the victim doesn't get to appeal their Death Sentence.

    September 30, 2010 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Gail Snail

    Why can't Brown be executed in the SAME MANNER as his victim?

    September 30, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  3. JDawg1

    The gaying of America.

    September 30, 2010 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
  4. ian

    i'll gladly chip in to help pay for the drug to knock him out. let's give the browns a better life.

    September 30, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  5. ian

    sorry, jordans.

    September 30, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  6. serena

    i cnt believe they are blocking this guy death sentence what about jordan's she didnt have a say so! I say fry'em nd be done with it! Prayers go out to the jordans.

    September 30, 2010 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Robert

    Re: jordans – I can't wait until this guy is executed and the family can finally have their sister and daughter back. Oh, wait, that's right. She'll still be dead. No amount of killing will bring her back. The family should move on instead of continuing the killing. Because the death penalty is such a good discourager of violent crime.

    September 30, 2010 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kraznodar

      Robert – please post your full name and address. We want you to experience the pain of a murder victim.

      September 30, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
  8. anna

    the drug is meant to kill him and they are worried that it expired? not like he's gonna get a bad reaction the following day.

    September 30, 2010 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  9. sheppard

    Robert – you are a cruel and self-center poster. What was your overwhelming need to say that about this family? Are you that hard-up for attention?

    September 30, 2010 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Davis

      Actually, Robert has a point under the smart@ss tone. The idea of justice and punishment is hollow in regards to easing bereavement. After his death, their initial sense of relief/finality will give way to the host of deep emotions they feel regarding her loss and probably a sense of loss of purpose. Grief and guilt, especially those carried like a flame for 30 years, will not end with his death. The comment about the father's own death before justice was served is most telling. So much of their reason for living seems to have been wrapped up around the criminal's punishment at the expense of everything else. After he dies, what happens next for them?

      September 30, 2010 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
  10. whitekong78

    Giving a murderer/rapist a hug does not solve the problem either. Maybe they can order the execution drug from a Canadian pharmacy. There are humans who give up their rights to be treated as such when they commit heinous acts. Layers cry human rights violations so they can get an extra paycheck.

    September 30, 2010 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  11. redneck

    It is sad that this happened and that the fact is that the people who are suppost to pull the switch is that they don't want to they don't want to do it the drug that they use is a pioson and that does not get old they have had 30 years to give justice

    September 30, 2010 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Dodie SkipAlong

    What the hell is wrong with Susan Jordan's brother that he refused to give her a ride home from school on the day she died? What did he THINK happens to young girls who are left to fend for themselves without any help from family members? "Troubled"? Rightly so.

    September 30, 2010 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kraznodar

      You were not there and don't know the details. Every one has the right to not be killed and your trying to blame a secondary victim for the murder just shows that you are sick in the head. The only person to blame is the murderer.

      September 30, 2010 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Rick McDaniel

    Carry out the sentence, California......even if you have to borrow the injection from another state!

    September 30, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  14. thinker

    Robert people like you are whats wrong with america today. you dont care because it didnt happen to you. I feel for the Jordans. The death penalty is not supposed to bring people back from the dead. Its to remove people who are to dangerous to walk umongst us. I dont want to pay for food and lodging for some lazy criminal. If you want to pay for him, give us your address and we will send all the rapist and murderers to live with you and your kids. How does that sound? Oh? you dont like that idea? kind of makes you a hypcrit

    September 30, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Molly

    Just goes to show how heterocentric some people still are. Terry is Dan's *husband,* not his "friend." Did anyone actually watch the video? They've been together 16 years.

    September 30, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • rillion

      Thank you. I made a comment pointing out the same thing, but it seems to have vanished.

      September 30, 2010 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
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