Photo by Michael Buckelew
BP in place to slowly choke off Gulf oil geyser
NEW ORLEANS -- In a potentially pivotal moment in the Gulf crisis, BP planned to begin closing valves Tuesday in a slow and methodical process that could finally choke off the geyser of crude at the bottom of the sea after three gloomy months and up to 180 million gallons spilled.
A new, tighter-fitting cap was lowered over the blown-out well Monday night. The next phase was to shut the openings in the 75-ton metal stack of pipes and valves gradually, one at a time, while watching pressure gauges to see if the cap would hold or any new leaks erupted.
The operation was expected to begin late Tuesday, and officials said it could last anywhere from six to 48 hours.
BP and the government's point man on the crisis -- the biggest offshore oil spill in U.S. history and one of the nation's worst environmental disasters -- stressed there were no guarantees, and they urged patience from Gulf residents.
NAACP resolution condemns racism in the tea party
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Leaders of the country's largest civil rights organization accused tea party activists on Tuesday of tolerating bigotry and approved a resolution condemning racism within the political movement.
The resolution was adopted during the annual convention in Kansas City of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, spokesman Chris Fleming said. Local tea party organizers disputed claims of racism and called on the NAACP to withdraw the resolution.
It was not immediately clear how the resolution was amended during the debate, which was mostly closed to the public.
The original called for the NAACP to ''educate its membership and the community that this movement is not just about higher taxes and limited government.''
Ohio dog lives after 6 gunshots
TOLEDO, Ohio -- An Ohio dog warden said a German shepherd named Sarge is one tough pup after surviving six gunshots to his head, neck and chest.
Witnesses told police in Toledo that the dog's owner and another man took turns shooting the dog with a pistol while he howled in his cage.
Lucas County dog warden Julie Lyle said that the bullets remain lodged inside Sarge but that he needs just painkillers and antibiotics. She said the dog was up, around, eating and drinking Tuesday.
Latino civil rights group: Gym chain discriminates
LOS ANGELES -- A Latino civil rights organization sued an international gym chain on Tuesday, accusing 24 Hour Fitness of racial and gender discrimination against its workers in California.
The lawsuit filed by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and a law firm claimed that black, Latino, Asian and female staffers systematically hit glass ceilings when they applied for management jobs at some of the company's approximately 200 California clubs.
''When they ask to apply for promotions, they're given the run-around or given a moving target,'' said Victor Viramontes, MALDEF's lead attorney. ''They say they have to hit their (sales) goals for the month to get a promotion, but they meet those goals and they're never promoted.''
Tween jewelry recalled for cadmium levels
About 137,000 pieces of imported children's jewelry sold at two stores popular with preteen girls -- Justice and Limited Too -- were recalled Tuesday for high levels of cadmium, the latest in a series of recalls involving the toxic metal.
The voluntary recall, announced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, was the sixth callback since The Associated Press first released findings of an investigation into cadmium in children's jewelry.
Billboard linking Obama, Hitler draws complaints
DES MOINES, Iowa -- A billboard created by an Iowa tea party group that compares President Barack Obama to Adolf Hitler and Vladimir Lenin is drawing sharp criticism -- even from fellow tea party activists who have condemned it as offensive and a waste of money.
The North Iowa Tea Party began displaying the billboard in downtown Mason City last week. The sign shows large photographs of Obama, Nazi leader Hitler and communist leader Lenin beneath the labels ''Democratic Socialism,'' ''National Socialism,'' and ''Marxist Socialism.''