Nation digest 11/06/02

Wednesday, November 6, 2002

Southern states lead in 'generosity index'

BOSTON -- Southerners still take the prize when it comes to charitable giving.

Relatively poor Bible Belt states, headed by Mississippi, retained their lead in the latest "generosity index," a survey measuring the disparity between what residents of each state earn and what they give.

Mississippi has finished first in five of the six annual surveys. In the latest, the Magnolia State once again has the greatest disparity between its ranking among the states in wealth -- 49th -- and its ranking in donations: 6th.

Following Mississippi are Arkansas, South Dakota, Tennessee and Louisiana, according to the Catalogue for Philanthropy, a Massachusetts group that created the study and encourages giving.

The survey doesn't reflect the recent economic downturn because it relied on IRS tax returns from 2000, the most recent year available.

Clot-busting drug doesn't help heart patients much

CHICAGO -- A promising anti-clotting drug does not improve hospitalized heart attack patients' chances of surviving a year when it is added to the standard treatment, a study found.

The results came in a follow-up international study of 16,588 patients who received intravenous doses of a standard clot-busting medicine with or without the newer drug, ReoPro.

ReoPro, known as a "super aspirin," helps keep blood particles called platelets from sticking together and forming a clot that can cause a heart attack. The older drug, reteplase, attacks different substances in blood clots.

But in the follow-up study, the death rates after a year were identical -- nearly 700 patients in both groups died, or about 8 percent in each.

Thousands of fans pay tribute to slain rapper

NEW YORK -- Pallbearers wearing white unlaced Adidas carried the body of slain Run-DMC star Jam Master Jay from a funeral Tuesday at which he was remembered as "the embodiment of hip-hop."

A funeral cortege of white stretch limousines and luxury SUVs was lined up outside the Allen A.M.E. Cathedral in the rapper's native Queens. Inside, bandmates Joseph "Run" Simmons and Darryl "DMC" McDaniel eulogized their friend, whose real name was Jason "Jay" Mizell, as a great man and groundbreaking musical force.

The funeral came six days after Mizell was shot to death in his Queens recording studio by a masked assailant. No one has been charged.

About 2,300 people attended the funeral.

JDL leader brain-dead after suicide attempt

LOS ANGELES -- Irv Rubin, the Jewish Defense League leader who was jailed on charges of plotting to bomb a mosque and the office of an Arab-American congressman, has been declared brain dead after what federal authorities called a suicide attempt.

Rubin used a razor to slash his neck and throat and then fell or jumped from a prison balcony at about 5:30 a.m. Monday as he and other inmates lined up for breakfast, said U.S. Marshal's spokesman Bill Woolsey.

"We're told that he is brain-dead and on life support," said Rubin attorney Peter Morris.

The apparent suicide attempt occurred hours before Rubin was to appear in court for a hearing in his case.

Rubin and associate Earl Krugel were arrested Dec. 11 on charges of plotting to bomb a mosque and an office of Rep. Darrell E. Issa, R-Calif.

Experimental laser hits artillery rounds in flight

WASHINGTON -- A military laser cannon destroyed two artillery rounds in flight Tuesday at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., in a first for the experimental defense system, the Army said.

In tests, the experimental system called the Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser tracked each of 2-foot-long artillery rounds and burned them with a laser beam, heating them until they exploded, Army officials said.

The laser was built as a joint project between the U.S. and Israeli militaries. Officials hope it will provide a defense against short-range rockets and artillery rounds.

-- From wire reports

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