- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 1, 2002

Small-plane crash kills pilot in New York

ARMONK, N.Y. A small plane crashed yesterday into a parking lot at IBM's headquarters, killing the pilot, a Westchester County Airport official said.

No one else was aboard the plane when it went down about 30 miles north of New York City. The plane, a Beech Air 24-R, crashed about 11/2 miles northeast of the airport, an airport spokesman said. The cause of the crash was being investigated.

Watkins declines re-election bid

OKLAHOMA CITY Republican Rep. Wes Watkins said yesterday he would not run for re-election this year and blamed Democrats for planning new districts that would cut him off from his constituents.

Mr. Watkins said "every map being discussed by the Democrat-controlled state Legislature" places his Stillwater residence outside the 3rd Congressional District he represents.

Oklahoma will lose one of its six House seats this year because census figures show its population has not grown as fast as other states. Mr. Watkins, 63, said he does not want to move or run in a district in which he doesn't live.

Poll shows drop in terrorism concerns

Concerns about terrorism have decreased in the past two months, according to an Associated Press poll.

The percentage of people who believe a terrorist attack is "very likely" in the near future has dropped by half from 48 percent to 23 percent since October, according to the poll taken for the AP by ICR of Media, Pa.

Americans are increasingly optimistic about the direction of the country. More than half 56 percent said they think the country is headed on the right path.

A year ago, slightly more people thought the country was on the wrong track than thought it was headed in the right direction.

Rapist dies of cancer on death row

TAMPA, Fla. Lawrence Singleton, who chopped off a teen-age hitchhiker's forearms in California and later was sent to death row in Florida for killing a prostitute, has died of cancer behind bars.

Singleton, 74, died Friday at the North Florida Reception Center in Starke.

In 1978, Singleton raped 15-year-old Mary Vincent, cut off her forearms and left her to die. He won parole in 1987 after serving eight years.

Singleton moved to Florida, where he later was convicted of murder for stabbing to death 31-year-old Roxanne Hayes at his Tampa home in 1997.

Heart disease affects 61.8 million Americans

Nearly 62 million Americans have some form of cardiovascular disease, and nearly 1 million die from it each year, statistics published yesterday show.

A third of deaths from heart disease could be prevented if people ate better diets and exercised more, the American Heart Association said in its annual report.

It said 61.8 million Americans had heart disease in 1999, the latest year for which statistics were available.

Harvard conflict hits black studies

BOSTON The Rev. Jesse Jackson plans to visit Harvard University for discussions about the school's diversity policy because of reports that high-profile black professors are considering leaving in a rift with the administration.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. and two other prominent members of Harvard's Afro-American studies department Cornel West and Anthony Appiah have fallen out with new Harvard President Lawrence Summers, who they claim has acted abrasively and suggested Mr. West has acted in ways unbecoming a Harvard professor, the Boston Globe reported.

Mr. Summers reportedly rebuked Mr. West for recording a rap compact disc, leading a political committee for Al Sharpton's potential presidential campaign and allowing grade inflation.

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