TV personality Eamonn Holmes, who hosts popular chat show This Morning on Britain's ITV, has found himself in hot water after asking sex addict Crystal Warren why she hasn't turned to prostitution to profit from her addiction. The 42-year-old recently revealed that she's slept with over 1,000 men and is unable to keep a job because of her sex addiction. "If you need this five or six times a day, have you never thought about making a business of it...charging for it?" asked Holmes. Warren was adamant that she's not proud of her behavior, but would never sell sex for money for fear of "becoming maybe like a robot. This way I do it when I want to do it. I get to choose who I sleep with." Angry British viewers took to Twitter to voice their outrage at Holmes' line of questioning: "Eamonn Holmes is disgusting! #EndOf" was a typical comment. Amid the embarrassment, an ITV spokesman told The Sun, "Eamonn's question was in the context of a wider balanced and frank interview." It's not the first sex-related on-air gaffe from 52-year-old Holmes: In 2011, he was accused of victim-blaming after telling rape victim Hannah Cant, "I hope you take taxis now."
An Indiana bill seeking to mandate drug testing for welfare applicants has been withdrawn—after it was amended to include drug testing for lawmakers. Indiana General Assembly Republican Rep. Jud McMillin took his bill—similar to ones introduced across the US in over 30 states, including Florida—off the table Friday when Democrat Rep. Ryan Dvorak successfully added the lawmaker amendment. It's considered unconstitutional for political candidates to be subject to drug testing. McMillin says he's withdrawn the bill temporarily so it can be revised, while insisting that responsible legislators—including him—would have no problem submitting: "Give me the cup right now and I will be happy to take the test." The bill will be reintroduced on Monday. McMillin's suggested revisions would mean only welfare-seekers who “arouse reasonable suspicion” would be forced to take tests. Dvorak isn't convinced of his rival's honorable intent: "After it passed, Rep. McMillin got pretty upset and pulled his bill,” he says. "If anything, I think it points out some of the hypocrisy... If we're going to impose standards on drug testing, then it should apply to everybody who receives government money."
Anheuser-Busch, the St. Louis-based manufacturer of Budweiser and Bud Light (which supplanted its older brother at the top of the best-selling US beer list in 2001) rolled out a new varient, Bud Light Platinum, on Monday. Naturally, it's planning to kick-start the Platinum marketing offensive during Sunday's Super Bowl. The twist? Bud Light Platinum is a higher-alcohol-content beer that's "aimed at younger, urban drinkers who have abandoned beer for spirits." As such, Platinum will boast 6% alcohol by volume (ABV), dwarfing Bud Light's 4.2% ABV. Traditional "Bud Heavy," aka Budweiser, is 5%. As the Super Bowl's only beer advertiser, football fans will see six Anheuser-Busch commercials during the game, two of which will be for Bud Light Platinum. The Platinum spots will reportedly highlight the new brew's "triple-filtered, smooth finish, top-shelf taste," and will also eschew beer commercials' recently dominant light-hearted, poking-fun-at-drinkers tone, in favor of a more serious, image-conscious approach. Evidently younger, urban drinkers who've switched to hard liquor find it hard to take a joke.
A mix-up in the appointment of coroners could mean the inquest into the death of singer Amy Winehouse—which found she had died of alcohol poisoning—may be ruled invalid. It was revealed this morning that the coroner in charge, Suzanne Greenway, was unqualified for the role and resigned a month after the investigation. Greenway recorded that Winehouse died by "misadventure" at her London home on July 23, 2010, as an "unintended consequence" of drinking too much alcohol. But she was a solicitor in the UK Law Society for merely two-and-a-half years, it turns out, instead of the required five. She should also have served five years as a "qualified medical practitioner," but was only qualified as a nurse in her native Australia. How she got the job seems a mystery—until you learn that she was appointed to the role by her husband, London coroner Dr. Andrew Scott Reid. "In November, it became apparent that I'd made an error in the appointment process," says Reid. "While I am confident that all of the inquests handled were done so correctly, I apologize if this matter causes distress." The 30 inquests that Greenway worked on could be declared illegal if they are challenged by the UK High Court.
Gender may play an important role in determining treatment for cocaine addicts. Researchers from Yale School of Medicine studied 30 addicts and 36 non-addicted recreational drinkers as a control group. While conducting brain scans, the scientists gave the subjects verbal cues related to cocaine, alcohol and stressful situations. To no one's surprise, the coke addicts showed increased brain activation in certain brain areas compared to the non-addicts. But an unexpected discovery was the how the women’s brains responded more to stress cues; the men’s brains responded more to cocaine cues. The findings—published in the American Journal of Psychiatry—suggest that women who are addicted to cocaine may benefit more from therapy focusing on stress-reduction, while male addicts may benefit more from 12-step programs, or cognitive behavioral therapy. “There are differences in treatment outcomes for people with addictions who experience stress-induced drug cravings and those whose cravings are induced by drug cues,” says psychiatrist Dr. Marc Potenza, first author of the study. “It is important to understand the biologic mechanisms that underlie these cravings.”
- Pot Legalization Efforts Forge Ahead in Key States [Reuters]
- Increase in Liquor Sales Bodes Well for Economic Recovery [Time Moneyland]
- Addicts' Cravings Have Different Roots in Men and Women [Science Daily]
- Video: Cops Beat Bronx Teen During Drug Arrest [Gothamist]
- "Sexually Frustrated" Meth-Smoker Busted for Driving Naked [LAist.com]
- Singer Florence Welch Once Got So Drunk She Set Fire to Her Hotel Room [NME]