Cat declawing: Vets agree to call the surgery an "amputation" -- but not to ban it

Vet Aubrey Lavizzo is leading the fight in Colorado to ban cat declawing.
At its national convention in Denver this week, officials of the American Veterinary Medical Association have taken the unusual step of "clarifying" the organization's policy on cat declawing to stress that it's a major surgery -- making prominent use of the word "amputation" in describing the procedure for the first time. It's a step toward candor concerning the operation, but one that probably won't placate the AVMA's critics on the issue, including many vets who consider declawing to be cruel and unnecessary.

See also: The debate over cat declawing sharpens

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CU Denver class teaches "nudging" the public toward social goals...and the greater good

Michelle Carpenter
Sille Krukow and student Jaime Flores look at nudge designs during a class session.
Think about the last time you were in an Ikea store. Whether you loved or hated the experience, you probably noticed a difference between the flow at Ikea and at other home-goods store, including arrows and signs attempting to steer you in the direction you needed to go in order to complete your shopping experience. Scandinavia, Ikea's motherland, is famous for designs that are meant to be both attractive and useful. And now the University of Colorado Denver is teaming up with Danish design expert Sille Krukow to create similar social designs in America.

See also: Crafting Yourself: CU Denver students create a creative program for kids

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Reader: What is everyone's problem with Californians? Get over it!

Don't Californicate Colorado! That was a popular bumpersticker years ago, and this state's residents -- particularly those who moved to Colorado relatively recently, perhaps even from the Golden State -- still seem stuck on the saying. But as they leap to defend Colorado from a commenter who thinks Denver "sucks elephant balls," they should be careful not to jump on California, cautions another reader.

See also: The top twenty reasons why you don't think Denver sucks elephant balls

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Initiative #135 would legalize casinos at racetracks: Yea or neigh?

Coady Photgraphy
Arapahoe Park could open a casino if 135 passes.
Initiative 135, which would expand gambling in Colorado to racetracks, is heading into the homestretch, with a campaign chest that could make this one of the most expensive issues on the November 4 ballot. Earlier this month, the 135 campaign and Coloradans for Better Schools announced that they had gathered 136,342 signatures in support of putting the measure on the ballot, and were turning them into the Colorado Secretary of State's office. But hold your horses: It hasn't made the ballot yet.

See also: Personhood USA pushes Amendment 67, redefinition of
"person" and "child"

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Denver County Jail is growing its own food with an aquaponics system

Courtesy of Colorado Aquaponics
The city's $3.25 million settlement with Jamal Hunter is just the latest hit the Denver Sheriff's Department has sustained in recent weeks. Between charges that complaints of abuse have been ignored and accusations that guards have been drinking on the job, smuggling in drugs and porn and instructing inmates to beat each other until they have "pumpkin heads," there's little good news coming out of the Denver jail system. But while the controversy grows, the Smith Road facility is growing something else: food.

See also: Dahlia Square could become a garden spot -- but right now, plans are sowing dissension in the neighborhood

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Case against man ticketed for saying "F*ck it" at Sam's Club dropped due to lack of witnesses

The disorderly conduct case against a man who dropped the F-bomb at an Aurora Sam's Club has been dropped. Russell Blackburn, the 59-year-old computer programmer ticketed for the offense, says he showed up for his July 15 jury trial only to hear the prosecuting attorney tell the judge that the case was being dismissed due to a lack of witnesses.

See also: Man says "F*ck it" at Sam's Club, gets a ticket for disorderly conduct

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"Repeal Prohibition, Again": New York Times's Andrew Rosenthal on legalization, Colorado pot

Categories: Marijuana


The New York Times editorial board is calling for the repeal of the prohibition against pot, and its stance had all the talking heads yapping yesterday. Times editorial page editor Andrew Rosenthal went on ABC's This Week yesterday morning to discuss the "High Times" series, and host Jon Karl asked whether he'd ever smoked pot. "I've never asked the people that work for me whether they smoke pot, and I'm not going to ask," Rosenthal responded. "I have smoked pot in my life. I went to college in Colorado in the 1970′s, you figure it out." Specifically, Rosenthal went to the University of Denver, graduating with a BA in American history in 1978.

See also: New York Times' Maureen Dowd wants pot edibles stamped with stoned skull and bones?

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Cannabis Time Capsule 1933: Meet the father of American Prohibition

Richard Pearson Hobson.
Today in Cannabis Time Capsule, we'd like to introduce you to the Father of American Prohibition, Richard Pearson Hobson. You can thank him for such things as marijuana prohibition, the war on drugs and America's failed attempt at making alcohol illegal in the 1920s.

In this 1933 article from the Steamboat Pilot, Hobson outlines his plan for ridding the nation of dope by 1963. That plan failed, which seemed to be the story of his life.

See also: Cannabis Time Capsule 1921: American Legion goes to war on drugs

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Reader: I witnessed an execution and it was the most disturbing moment of my life

Our post about horribly botched executions, prompted by a lethal injection of convicted killer Joseph Rudolph Wood that dragged on for nearly two hours, inspired passionate responses from readers on the topic of capital punishment. Here the comment of someone speaking from personal experience.

See also: Joseph Wood's botched lethal injection joins list of executions gone horribly wrong

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Keeping the peace at the Gathering of the Juggalos

Categories: Denver Blogs

Photo by Nate "Igor" Smith
Denver blog posts cover posses of all kinds.

On our Backbeat blog, Daniel Hill and Drew Ailes talk to the cops at the Gathering of the Juggalos.

Colorado Pols on criticism of Cory Gardner in, of all places, Cosmopolitan magazine.

A Denver Frank post announces: "I'm on Vacation." Me, too.

See also: Did Riot Fest's name get it kicked out of original location?

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