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Westlake Legal Group > News Corporation (Page 155)

Video of Mike Pence Saying ‘Foreign Governments Cannot Participate in the American Political Process’ Goes Viral After Trump-Ukraine Scandal

Westlake Legal Group 7_0ZWMIPRZi6wX2FyIq1qbvc3wlGEbMaR5cgkiLgKT4 Video of Mike Pence Saying ‘Foreign Governments Cannot Participate in the American Political Process’ Goes Viral After Trump-Ukraine Scandal r/politics

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Sylvester Stallone and Richard Gere once fought over Princess Diana according to Elton John

Princess Diana almost caused a fight between Slyvester Stallone and Richard Gere at one of Elton John’s famous parties.

The “Tiny Dancer” singer has revealed his new autobiography, “Me,” that he threw a posh dinner party for the head of Disney Jeffrey Katzenberg when he was making “The Lion King”– and was begged to invite his pal Princess Di.

Elton and his husband David Furnish also invited A-listers Richard Gere and Sylvester Stallone to the party alongside George Michael, Richard Curtis and his wife Emma Freud.

PRINCESS DIANA WAS ‘PARANOID’ ABOUT HER CAR BEFORE FATAL CRASH, PODCAST CLAIMS

Diana was separated from Prince Charles at the time and was “very taken” with dashing Richard Gere who had just broken up with Cindy Crawford.

“They ended up sitting in front of the fireplace together, locked in rapt conversation,” an excerpt from Elton’s autobiography published in the Daily Mail reads.

Westlake Legal Group gere-diana-stallone-Getty Sylvester Stallone and Richard Gere once fought over Princess Diana according to Elton John The Sun fox-news/person/princess-diana fnc/entertainment fnc article 93b12246-082f-53bb-b1f2-11a7ad2600c1

Richard Gere (L), Princess Diana (C) and Sylvester Stallone (R) (Getty)

“As the rest of us chatted, I couldn’t help notice a strange atmosphere in the room. Judging by the kind of looks he kept shooting them, Diana and Richard Gere’s newly blossoming friendship was not going down well with Sylvester Stallone at all.”

Elton claims Sly attended the dinner party just to meet Diana – and he had hoped to romance her.

So when everyone sat down to dinner Sly took Richard for a word outside.

PRINCE HARRY RETRACES PRINCESS DIANA’S FOOTSTEPS, WALKS THROUGH ANGOLA MINEFIELD 22 YEARS LATER

“It transpired that David discovered Sylvester Stallone and Richard Gere in the corridor, squaring up to each other, apparently about to settle their differences over Diana by having a fist-fight,” Elton writes.

“He’d managed to calm things down by pretending he hadn’t noticed what was going on — ‘Hey, guys! Time for dinner!’ — but Sylvester clearly still wasn’t happy.”

“I never would have come,” he snapped, as David and I showed him to the door, “If I’d known Prince f***in’ Charming was gonna be here.”

MEGHAN MARKLE AND PRINCE HARRY PAY TRIBUTE TO LATE PRINCESS DIANA ON SOCIAL MEDIA

Then he added: “If I’d wanted her, I would’ve taken her!”

Princess Diana had no idea what transpired and later went back to the fireplace with handsome Richard Gere.

“Me: Elton John Official Autobiography” by Elton John is published on October 15.

Westlake Legal Group gere-diana-stallone-Getty Sylvester Stallone and Richard Gere once fought over Princess Diana according to Elton John The Sun fox-news/person/princess-diana fnc/entertainment fnc article 93b12246-082f-53bb-b1f2-11a7ad2600c1   Westlake Legal Group gere-diana-stallone-Getty Sylvester Stallone and Richard Gere once fought over Princess Diana according to Elton John The Sun fox-news/person/princess-diana fnc/entertainment fnc article 93b12246-082f-53bb-b1f2-11a7ad2600c1

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Canadian man trying to rest calls 911 after Amber Alert wakes him up

A 70-year-old man in Canada was arrested this week after complaining to police about receiving an Amber Alert on his phone.

Douglas Bagshaw was taken into custody on a mischief charge after calling 911 on Tuesday to say he was upset about the alert on his phone because he was trying to rest, CTV News reports.

He was accused of purposely tying up emergency lines, Hamilton police said Thursday.

CALIFORNIA AMBER ALERT FOR BOY, 2, AND FATHER CALLED OFF AFTER BODIES FOUND NEAR CAMPGROUND: POLICE

“Simply put, he was angry about receiving the Amber Alert on his phone because he was trying to rest,” Detective Sgt. Lisa Chambers said, according to CBC.

“And then he further told us he would continue to call in response to the ongoing alerts,” she said.

AMBER ALERT ISSUED FOR NEW JERSEY GIRL, 5; WITNESSES SAY MAN LED HER INTO RED VAN

The Amber Alert was issued after five children went missing in Ontario. Police said they issued the alert out of concern for the children’s safety, CBC reported.

The children were found safe Wednesday and police credited the alert with providing information that led to them being found.

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“It’s very frustrating,” Chamber told the news outlet. “I never thought the day would come where I’d have to explain to an adult the importance of not tying up a 911 line and the importance of an Amber Alert in locating a child who may be in danger.”

Westlake Legal Group hamilton-pd Canadian man trying to rest calls 911 after Amber Alert wakes him up Robert Gearty fox-news/world/world-regions/canada fox news fnc/world fnc article 2f1f0c91-ac35-50b7-b6c7-a0dd4e9d4ef1   Westlake Legal Group hamilton-pd Canadian man trying to rest calls 911 after Amber Alert wakes him up Robert Gearty fox-news/world/world-regions/canada fox news fnc/world fnc article 2f1f0c91-ac35-50b7-b6c7-a0dd4e9d4ef1

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4 homeless men beaten to death in Manhattan in random attack, police say

CLOSEWestlake Legal Group icon_close 4 homeless men beaten to death in Manhattan in random attack, police say

Four homeless men were found beaten to death in Manhattan early Saturday morning in what police are calling a random attack. A fifth man is in critical condition.

All five victims were men who suffered trauma to the head, police say. They appeared to have been sleeping.

At 1:49 a.m., police responded to a 911 call of an assault in progress in the Chinatown area. Upon arrival, officers found an adult male, unconscious and unresponsive, with severe trauma to the head. EMS pronounced the man dead.

A second man, 49, was taken to New York Downtown Hospital in critical condition.

Police later discovered three more men in the area, all who had died.

Two witnesses on the scene told officers that a man in a black jacket and black pants struck a victim in the head with a metal object multiple times, then left.

A 24-year-old man with a pipe has been taken into custody. The man also appeared to be homeless, police say.

Police could not say if the suspect was found holding the pipe.

“We did recover a weapon — a pipe — close by. I’ll leave it at that,” said Deputy Chief of Manhattan South Detectives Michael Baldassano at a press conference Saturday. 

Baldassanosaid that the crime appeared to be a random attack.

Police are conducting a street-by-street canvas for additional victims, said Assistant Chief Stephen J. Hughes, Commanding Officer Patrol Borough Manhattan South.

An investigation is ongoing. Police asked anyone with information or who have experienced a similar crime to get in contact the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). Tips can also be submitted online at www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or on Twitter at @NYPDTips.

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Pompeo defends administration amid Ukraine controversy: ‘It is our duty to investigate’

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6091289148001_6091286260001-vs Pompeo defends administration amid Ukraine controversy: ‘It is our duty to investigate’ fox news fnc/politics fnc article Adam Shaw 37f1ac14-fe61-5008-b574-0bacb6b008e4

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Saturday defended the Trump administration over its dealings with Ukraine amid an escalating impeachment inquiry into the matter from House Democrats — telling reporters that governments have a “duty” to investigate possible interference in the 2016 election, and accusing the Obama administration of not doing enough.

“This administration was incredibly focused on making sure that we worked with Ukraine in a way that was appropriate,” he told reporters in Athens, Greece. “And it is not only appropriate but it is our duty to investigate if we think there was interference in the election of 2016.”

POMPEO MISSES DEADLINE TO TURN OVER STATE DEPT. DOCS ON UKRAINE, GIULIANI IN IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY

He spoke after the State Department missed a Friday deadline to comply with a subpoena issued by House Democrats to hand over documents related to the department’s dealings with Ukraine and Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani. He told reporters that the department had sent a letter to Congress, “which is our initial response to the document request.” He also said that the department would do what it is required to do by law.

Under particular scrutiny is Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, in which Trump urged Zelensky to look into possible interference by Ukraine in the 2016 election as well as former Vice President Joe Biden’s and his son Hunter’s conduct in the country. During the call, Trump asked for a “favor” in the form of Ukraine providing information about theories related to the hacking of the Democratic National Committee server in 2016.

“The server, they say Ukraine has it,” he told Zelensky.

Democrats claim that Trump used $400 million in military aid as a quid pro quo for the Ukrainians to investigate a political opponent and have opened an impeachment inquiry, firing off a raft of subpoenas within a few days to top administration and White House officials. The House Oversight Committee subpoenaed the White House late Friday, with the Democratic chairmen of three committees saying that Trump has “chosen the path of defiance, obstruction and cover up” in response to the inquiry.

On Saturday, Pompeo did not specifically address the Biden question but defended the administration’s interest in any possible Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election as one that was part of the government’s duty to make sure America’s elections are secure. He also said that administration was “full-fledged” on its commitment to pushing back against corruption in Ukraine.

HOUSE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE SUBPOENAS WHITE HOUSE IN IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY

“I think everyone recognizes that governments have an obligation indeed a duty to ensure that elections happen with integrity without interference from any government whether that’s the Ukrainian government or any other,” Pompeo said Saturday. “So inquiries with respect to that are completely important and if we need another government’s assistance it’s very reasonable to ask that government to say ‘Do you have any help that you can provide?’ So we can protect the American people so that they can vote in free and fair elections without interference from any other country.”

He also suggested the Obama administration was negligent in those duties.

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“I only wish that the previous administration had protected our elections back in 2016,” he said. “You recall that the interference that took place took place under the previous administration.”

Pompeo’s remarks come as the administration has sought to go on the offense in the face of the Democratic impeachment push. The White House was expected to send a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., as early as Monday arguing that Congress could not mount its impeachment inquiry without first having a vote to authorize it. Trump on Friday said that he has an “obligation” to end corruption, even if that requires enlisting other countries.

“This has NOTHING to do with politics or a political campaign against the Bidens,” he tweeted. “This does have to do with their corruption!”

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6091289148001_6091286260001-vs Pompeo defends administration amid Ukraine controversy: ‘It is our duty to investigate’ fox news fnc/politics fnc article Adam Shaw 37f1ac14-fe61-5008-b574-0bacb6b008e4   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6091289148001_6091286260001-vs Pompeo defends administration amid Ukraine controversy: ‘It is our duty to investigate’ fox news fnc/politics fnc article Adam Shaw 37f1ac14-fe61-5008-b574-0bacb6b008e4

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Luke Perry’s son Jack looks like his twin at New York Comic Con

Luke Perry might be gone but his kids are continuing his legacy.

The actor’s son, Jack, who is a pro wrestler and goes by the name Jungle Boy, was photographed at New York Comic Con on Friday and his resemblance to Luke is uncanny.

The 22-year-old was in town to promote All Elite Wrestling, which just made its debut on TNT on Thursday night.

LUKE PERRY’S SON MAKES WRESTLING RETURN FOR FIRST TIME SINCE ACTOR’S DEATH

Jack celebrated the accomplishment on social media. “Awesome tv debut last night for @aewonthnt! History in the making,” he wrote.

Luke died in March at only 52 years old after suffering a massive stroke.

In July, Jack opened up about his father’s death to Entertainment Tonight, saying “the thing that I’m most proud of about my dad, always, is that he was a really good guy.”

LEONARDO DICAPRIO TALKS ‘RIVERDALE’ ACTOR LUKE PERRY, SAYS HE WAS STARSTRUCK BY ‘AMAZING HUMAN BEING’

“And you know, not everyone got the chance to know him. But I think the outreach and support, I think it kind of shows that. I’m happy to see it. He was loved by everybody and it’s nice to see that from everybody and it’s a nice thing.”

Westlake Legal Group jackperry Luke Perry's son Jack looks like his twin at New York Comic Con Jessica Napoli fox-news/person/luke-perry fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 8e8e7904-5b41-5dd1-8276-7fefd946978e

Jack Perry aka Jungle Boy of TNT series All Elite Wrestling: Dynamite attends press briefing New York Comic Con at Jacob Javits Center.  (Lev Radin/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

He also first paid tribute to Luke a few days after his death in an emotional post on Instagram. “He was a lot of things to a lot of people. To me, he was always Dad,” he wrote.

‘BEVERLY HILLS 90210’ STAR LUKE PERRY’S MOST ICONIC ROLES

“He loved [and] supported me in everything, and inspired me to be the best that I could possibly be. I’ve learned so much from you, and my heart is broken thinking about everything you won’t be here for. I’ll miss you every day that I walk this earth. “I’ll do whatever I can to carry on your legacy and make you proud. I love you dad.”

Westlake Legal Group luke-perry-getty Luke Perry's son Jack looks like his twin at New York Comic Con Jessica Napoli fox-news/person/luke-perry fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 8e8e7904-5b41-5dd1-8276-7fefd946978e

Luke Perry in 1991.  (Getty)

Luke was also survived by his 19-year-old daughter and Jack’s sister, Sophie.

Westlake Legal Group jackperry Luke Perry's son Jack looks like his twin at New York Comic Con Jessica Napoli fox-news/person/luke-perry fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 8e8e7904-5b41-5dd1-8276-7fefd946978e   Westlake Legal Group jackperry Luke Perry's son Jack looks like his twin at New York Comic Con Jessica Napoli fox-news/person/luke-perry fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 8e8e7904-5b41-5dd1-8276-7fefd946978e

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Pence’s Chief of Staff Marc Short says impeachment subpoena based on ‘fake news’

Westlake Legal Group cummings-short-schiff-AP-FOX Pence's Chief of Staff Marc Short says impeachment subpoena based on 'fake news' Julia Musto fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/person/mike-pence fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc e3c85dbe-4955-5f4f-a6f0-e19420441692 article

A letter sent from House Democrats to Vice President Mike Pence requesting documents as part of the impeachment inquiry was based on “fake news,” the vice president’s Chief of Staff Marc Short said Saturday.

Chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md., Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., gave Pence until October 15 to produce pertinent documents.

The House Oversight Committee also subpoenaed the White House late Friday evening.

The Democratic chairmen of three House committees wrote that President Trump “has chosen the path of defiance, obstruction, and cover-up” in response to the ongoing impeachment inquiry related to his conduct on a phone call with President Volodymyr Zelenskiy of Ukraine.

WHISTLEBLOWER DID NOT DISCLOSE CONTACT WITH SCHIFF’S COMMITTEE TO INSPECTOR GENERAL, SOURCES SAY

The chairmen wrote that “…public reports have raised questions about any role [Pence] may have played in conveying or reinforcing the President’s stark message to the Ukrainian President.”

Appearing on “Fox & Friends” with host Pete Hegseth, Short said House Democrats only want to discuss their “partisan impeachment” narrative and the American people are “fed up with it.”

“And, as opposed to working on things that we could actually be working on together — like lowering drug prices or continuing to create new jobs with new trade deals — Democrats want to focus on these continued investigations,” Short lamented.

“I think this administration’s continued to deliver for the American people in rebuilding the military, in securing the border and confirming a record number of judges. And, just yesterday, more evidence of this booming economy with 3.5 percent unemployment rate,” he touted. “The economy is booming. Democrats don’t want to talk about that, and so they’ve been focused on impeachment.”

The president has resisted Democratic attempts to produce documents and administration witnesses for the inquiry, although acknowledging that Democrats “have the votes” to proceed.

The White House was expected to send a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., as early as Monday arguing that Congress could not mount its impeachment inquiry without having a vote to authorize it. The speaker has said such a vote is unnecessary.

In the chairmen’s Friday letter, they warned the White House that “Speaker Pelosi has confirmed that an impeachment inquiry is underway, and it is not for the White House to say otherwise.”

Turning to the letter, Short told Hegseth that the chairmen’s source in the letter — a report in “The Washington Post” – was distorted.

“I don’t know about Volker’s exchanges. I saw those same news reports. But you know what, President Zelenskiy himself said he felt no pressure. From the President or the Vice President. That should have ended a lot of these inquiries at that point,” said Short.

“The reality is that we’re going to continue to focus on what we think is most important to the American people,” he concluded.

“There [are] 21 Democrats who are residing in districts where Donald Trump won in 2016. And those members have to be put on notice and say, ‘are you actually going to help your constituents to do things that are beneficial for the American people or are you siding with Nancy Pelosi and these endless investigations?” he asked.

Westlake Legal Group cummings-short-schiff-AP-FOX Pence's Chief of Staff Marc Short says impeachment subpoena based on 'fake news' Julia Musto fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/person/mike-pence fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc e3c85dbe-4955-5f4f-a6f0-e19420441692 article   Westlake Legal Group cummings-short-schiff-AP-FOX Pence's Chief of Staff Marc Short says impeachment subpoena based on 'fake news' Julia Musto fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/person/mike-pence fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc e3c85dbe-4955-5f4f-a6f0-e19420441692 article

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Newt Gingrich: Pelosi’s rigged game far cry from truth-seeking impeachment inquiries into Nixon, Clinton

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6092465644001_6092461600001-vs Newt Gingrich: Pelosi's rigged game far cry from truth-seeking impeachment inquiries into Nixon, Clinton Newt Gingrich fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/politics fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc d1a16ac5-8a7d-5eab-b7d3-707d9bd9e4a2 article

If you want proof that Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the House Democrats are creating a rigged game that sets up a coup to destroy the president, simply look at the last two legitimate impeachment efforts — in 1973 and 1998.

Both Democratic Judiciary Committee Chairman Peter Rodino in 1973 and Republican Judicial Committee Chairman Henry Hyde in 1998 set a standard for fairness and operated with a judicial temperament of seeking the truth rather than maximizing partisan advantage.

In 1973, Rodino set the gold standard for fairness. The rights of the minority were protected. The American people’s right to know what was going on was protected.

Chairman Rodino himself set a standard for fairness and seriousness as a congressman exercising constitutional oversight.  In fact, the Rodino Rules for bipartisanship were widely considered so fair and legitimate that when we were faced with a special counsel report charging that President Clinton had committed 11 potentially impeachable offenses, our initial response was bipartisan.

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Democratic leader Dick Gephardt and I held a joint press conference announcing that we had agreed the entire report should be published so the American people could make up their own minds.

Compare their behavior with the wild lies House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., has been telling for two years – first about the Russian collusion hoax and now about the Ukrainian absurdity.

If you read the opening statements of Rodino and Hyde, and then look at the profoundly dishonest, totally made up and entirely false opening statement by Schiff, you can see the difference between people who are trying to uphold the rule of law and those who seek to destroy a president at any cost.

The result of these very different approaches can be seen in the voting pattern in the House.

In the current atmosphere – with the dishonest, one-sided rigged game, and indeed, an obvious liar as chair of the investigation – can you imagine two-thirds of House Republicans voting with Pelosi and Schiff for a witch hunt conducted under totally partisan rules?

In November 1973, the House voted to fund the investigation into President Nixon on a bipartisan 367-51 vote. By February 1974, everyone was so convinced that Rodino was being fair and non-partisan that the resolution to conduct a formal investigation passed 410-4.

When we were faced with the Starr Report we were in a more polarized environment. The Clinton team had concluded that they had to run a very partisan defense. Despite the intense efforts of James Carville and others to polarize the Democrats, we continued to push with Henry Hyde in an open way.

The result of our openness was that a substantial number of Democrats continued to vote with us on the procedures despite intense pressure from the White House and outside groups.

In September 1998, the House released the Starr Report on a 363-63 vote. Democrats favored an investigation by a better than 2-to-1 margin.

In the current atmosphere – with the dishonest, one-sided rigged game, and indeed, an obvious liar as chair of the investigation – can you imagine two-thirds of House Republicans voting with Pelosi and Schiff for a witch hunt conducted under totally partisan rules?

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Everyone interested in better understanding how fair people used judicial standards and basic fairness in 1973 and 1998 should read former GOP Congressman James Rogan’s personal account of the process in an important book: Catching Our Flag: Behind the Scenes of a Presidential Impeachment.”

It will make crystal clear that the current partisan actions are a complete sham.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE FROM NEWT GINGRICH

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6092465644001_6092461600001-vs Newt Gingrich: Pelosi's rigged game far cry from truth-seeking impeachment inquiries into Nixon, Clinton Newt Gingrich fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/politics fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc d1a16ac5-8a7d-5eab-b7d3-707d9bd9e4a2 article   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6092465644001_6092461600001-vs Newt Gingrich: Pelosi's rigged game far cry from truth-seeking impeachment inquiries into Nixon, Clinton Newt Gingrich fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/politics fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc d1a16ac5-8a7d-5eab-b7d3-707d9bd9e4a2 article

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Rock Climbers To Test Trump’s Boast That His Border Barrier Can’t Be Scaled

Westlake Legal Group 5d984af52100003100311257 Rock Climbers To Test Trump’s Boast That His Border Barrier Can’t Be Scaled

Rock climbers plan to test President Donald Trump’s boast that his new stretch of border barrier cannot be scaled by anyone.

“Many in the climbing community were amused a couple of weeks ago when our POTUS held a press conference at a section of his latest border wall design — a series of parallel square steel posts with a 5-foot-high plate at the top,” climber and engineer Rick Weber wrote Friday in “Rock and Ice” magazine, noting that Trump described it as “impossible to climb.”

The president “boasted that ‘the federal government tested the structure by having 20 skilled mountain climbers attempt to climb it, and no one could,’” Weber wrote. But he added, “No one in our climbing community knows any of these 20 mountaineers. I doubt if they exist.”

Maya Madere, a sophomore at Stanford University who is the nation’s fifth-ranked woman boulderer (that’s someone who climbs smaller rock formations without ropes), called Trump’s claim that the barrier was tested by top climbers “preposterous.” Trump is “full of shit as usual,” she told The Daily Beast last month.

“Definitely no well-recognized U.S. climbers have taken part in something like that,” climber Ross Fulkerson, a seven-time member of the U.S. national team, told The Daily Beast. 

But now Weber is arranging for climbers to test a replica of the barrier in a climbing competition on Oct. 11 and 12 in the Red River Gorge area of Kentucky. Entry is free and there will be prizes, he wrote. The dates overlap with an annual climbing event in the area known as Rocktoberfest.

“To declare something to be impossible to climb to a bonafide rock climber is to issue a challenge,” Weber wrote.

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My Dog Gracie’s Death Absolutely Devastated Me. Please Don’t Say She Was ‘Just A Pet.’

In November 2018, I heard her nails catch the carpet. The noise was a gentle, scratchy zip, and I think even then I knew she was dying. Well, at the very least, the pessimist in me knew something was very wrong. I began Googling, and the worst hit was degenerative myelopathy (DM). That’s what eventually killed my dog, Gracie, on Sept. 7, 2019.

DM is a degenerative disease that affects the spinal cord. It is analogous to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in humans. Initial symptoms include wobbling of the back end and knuckling of the back paws. Then the legs become weak, then paralyzed. Then the bladder goes. Then the front legs. Then the respiratory system. The disease is generally known to be painless and terminal.

My husband, Troy, and I took Gracie to the vet immediately after the first episode of “knuckling” and received an optimistic prognosis — DM was “way down” on the differential. The knuckling only affected the one back paw intermittently. A conservative approach with a focus on strengthening and exercise was a reasonable first step.  

By December 2018, her back legs slipped just a little on my parents’ shiny wood floor as she ambled near the Christmas tree. In February, she ran drills for treats in our living room to strengthen her legs. By March, she wobbled more when she walked and had trouble placing her right back paw firmly on the ground, so we tried therapy and took her for X-rays. Nothing was wrong with her skeleton, not even the arthritis expected of a dog her age.

Westlake Legal Group 5d960fec2100001403f9f26f My Dog Gracie’s Death Absolutely Devastated Me. Please Don’t Say She Was ‘Just A Pet.’

Courtesy of Lauren Twigg Krupica Gracie still standing strong in February 2019.

In April, we traveled to a dog neurologist. He said we could do an MRI. He was pretty sure it was DM without the MRI. He advised we send away a DNA sample for genetic testing. In the meantime, her right back leg became completely paralyzed. The results of the DNA test returned in mid-May: “A/A Homozygous at risk, 2 copies of the DM Mutation.” 

Dejected but defiant, we committed ourselves to Gracie’s wellness. We tried every leg brace and paw-traction aid we could find. We bought a rear harness to operate her right leg for her. Then we bought a wheelchair. We researched the most nutritious foods and supplements and purchased them. When her incontinence started in May, we bought reusable diapers and piddle pads.

In July, the crippling urinary tract infections began. Vet appointments occurred multiple times a week by August. But she rallied! She played with her ball, barked and sniped at her much bigger and younger dog-sister, gave us her paw to shake, and soaked up the attention and treats at a Labor Day cookout. She continued to affirm our game plan: As long as she remained “Gracie,” happy and engaged in life, we would continue to fight with her. When she couldn’t go on, we would know, and we would make a compassionate decision.

Gracie took the decision out of our hands. Two days after the last time she handed Troy her paw in exchange for a treat, her diaphragm apparently stopped working. He picked her up to put her in the car for a planned vet appointment. She looked him in the eyes and died.

The shock of her imminent death created mental dissonance that is physically painful. We knew this was going to happen. We watched it happen. It happened. So, by definition, it can’t be shocking. Yet, here we are, weeks after she passed, still in shock. 

Westlake Legal Group 5d960efe2200008c01dcc770 My Dog Gracie’s Death Absolutely Devastated Me. Please Don’t Say She Was ‘Just A Pet.’

Courtesy of Lauren Twigg Krupica Lauren Twigg Krupica with her beloved Gracie.

Gracie was sick. In hindsight, she was really sick for much of July and August. The house smelled of urine. “Gracie laundry” added 30 minutes to my prework routine in the morning. I was late to work a lot. Our counters were lined with syringes of steroids and pill bottles for various symptoms. Our refrigerator housed a bag of sodium chloride for emergency hydration; our pantry, needles for subcutaneous injections. Troy learned how to express her bladder and left work midday to keep her on a 4- to 5-hour expression schedule. 

We woke up at least three times each night to reposition her and change the first layer of absorbent padding. For approximately her last 65 days, conversations were exclusively Gracie-focused: “Did you get her to eat? Was her diaper wet when you got home? Do you think she feels warm? Can you grab more wipes on the way home? Why do you think she’s not eating today? Should we go to the emergency vet or wait until the morning? Today is a great day, right?” 

Despite the constant fear and worry, there was no other path. Her “bad” days only punctuated great days. How could we choose to end her life when she appeared happy and dignified, but for some mechanical failings? We became her legs and her bladder. We maintained impeccable hygiene for her. We were practically permanent fixtures at her vet’s office.

Our nervous systems now operate in overdrive. Our shoulders have been crunched under our ears for 10 months. Repeated, alternating sensations of deep relief and overwhelming panic, within the course of a couple of hours, multiple days a week, rewired our brains. I feel a sense of dread when the phone rings. Then I realize the “bad call” already happened and a macabre sense of relief floods me for a second. I start to gear up for postwork caretaking duties as I drive down our hilly driveway, only to realize by the time I pull in the garage, there are none. 

Her absence feels like homesickness: I want to go home, except I can’t because that home disappeared, and there is no way to find it.

I held her for five hours after she died. She became cold and hard and heavy, like a big piggy bank wrapped in fur. I struggled with her weight and shape as I walked around the yard, tracing the route where she used to run after her ball. I watched my bereft husband dig a grave in the impossibly rocky, clay soil of our backyard in nearly 90 degree heat. He placed her in the ground and covered her up, and my previous 12 years hit a hard stop. 

Her absence feels like homesickness: I want to go home, except I can’t because that home disappeared, and there is no way to find it. The three of us were an ecosystem for 12 years, 10 months and 13 days. She watched sports with Troy and “yelled” at the TV when he yelled. She laid her head on my keyboard when I worked too long. She begged for bites of every dinner. She ripped open packages every Christmas. (They weren’t even hers. She just really liked ripping things apart.) She herded nieces and nephews and nestled closely to them at sleepovers. She ate a small piece of birthday pumpkin pie every Oct. 25. She was co-captain of boat rides on the lake. She snuck nibbles of Pop-Tarts from her “Pap” when she visited her “grandparents.” She slept next to us every night. Now what?

In the immediate days after she died, Troy and I stopped eating. I would wake up with a racing heart shortly after falling asleep. I still don’t want to come home from work because the house feels haunted by tragedy. The specter of death had lingered for months, but in the form of a familiar foe. We had a daily strategy and executed it. We were winning. Then death entered the house by sneak attack, establishing itself the victor.

In movies, people fall to the ground and cry when someone has died. Previous to Sept. 7, 2019, I, blessedly, never totally understood why. Now I do. It’s because people actually do fall to the ground and cry when someone has died. Never in my adult life have I spent so much time on the ground. On the deck. On the little bed where she took her last breath. On the patio by her grave. In the living room. In my bedroom. I now see that grief physically forces you down. If there were a place lower than the ground, the grieving would find it. 

Westlake Legal Group 5d9610ee210000f703f9f2e1 My Dog Gracie’s Death Absolutely Devastated Me. Please Don’t Say She Was ‘Just A Pet.’

Courtesy of Lauren Twigg Krupica Gracie on the boat, one of her favorite places, on July 29, 2019.

Looking at the fresh grave in the yard was untenable, so we planted a rose garden around it. We put up a little white picket fence, added some stepping stones, and put a bench next to the two miniature rose bushes we planted on top of her. The physical work, the sweating in the heat and the straining to see our work area as the sun set, helped us sleep at night. Creating something nice allowed us to channel our grief into productivity.

Grieving for a dog feels bad. On top of the devastation of losing the being that got me through the entirety of young adulthood, I feel guilt and shame. There are people who have lost children to illness, violence and accidents; people who don’t have money for necessities, let alone veterinary care; 12-year-old children who haven’t lived a life as good as this dog had; ailing elderly people who are not provided the attention and quality of care that we gave Gracie; and a litany of other terrible things affecting people and this planet at any given time. That is a problem. I know it. I am sorry for it, and I wish my sorrow for those things would change how bone-achingly sad I am about my dead dog. While wrestling with the uncomfortable privilege of mourning this dog, I need to mourn this dog. 

Admitting to the grief is embarrassing. Despite the fact that Americans spend billions of dollars a year on pets, and occasionally give them seats at dinner tables and create social media accounts for them, their deaths have an unspoken qualification: “just.” Just a pet. Just a dog.

Their deaths are presumed to be a source of sadness, but not high enough in the Hierarchy of Sad Things to qualify you for bereavement leave. Perhaps there are practical reasons for that. My father, at age 13, lost his father. The emotional devastation was compounded by a new economic landscape and a new reality as the “man of the house.” 

When a pet dies, there are no ancillary impacts. I have suffered no loss of income as a result of my dog’s death. I didn’t depend on her to make dinner or cut the grass. There is no estate that I must now administer. No showing or funeral to publicly pay respects. There is only loss. A dogless collar, a negative space at the head of my bed, a confounding detachment between my present self and the person I was when she was mine. 

Despite the fact that Americans spend billions of dollars a year on pets, and occasionally give them seats at dinner tables and create social media accounts for them, their deaths have an unspoken qualification: “just.” Just a pet. Just a dog.

Gracie was more than her illness. Failing to recognize that would be a scandalously reductive view of a rich and impactful 12 years. She was a force, and the fact that she thrived with her condition as long as she did is a testament to her mental and physical grit. Weighing in around 30 pounds for most of her life and standing at approximately a foot tall, she was a hardy little beast, but petite and beautiful. Bright orange and white with an eardrum-shattering bark, Gracie made herself known.

She was parent and child to us. Protector and protected. She was my favorite childhood stuffed animal come to life: pure, tactile comfort and warmth with the added bonus of a real, unique personality incapable of malice. Food, water, and general care and keeping in exchange for unconditional love, acceptance, kinship and limitless joy seems too good to be true. In the fog of grief, sometimes I think it was. 

I named Gracie within moments of locking eyes with her in December 2006. She looks graceful, I thought. I never actually looked up the word “grace” in all those years. The first definition from Merriam-Webster.com is “unmerited divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification.” Boy, was she ever. It was pure bad luck that my Corgi was afflicted with DM, but resentment is an affront to her spirit. How fortunate any of us may be to share a fraction of our lives with such precious creatures. How fortunate I was to have so many years full of grace.

Lauren Twigg Krupica is an attorney in West Virginia.

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