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Opening Arguments

Good argument for the death penalty

For my "the world is getting stranger in ways I don't even want to think about" file:

BOSTON - The new commissioner of the state's prison system said Tuesday he plans to re-examine the case of a convicted killer suing the Department of Correction to try to get a sex-change operation.

Prison officials have strenuously opposed a request from Michelle Kosilek to have the surgery, saying it could make her a target for sexual assault by other inmates.

But DOC Commissioner Harold Clarke, who took over the department in November, said he has not decided yet whether to continue to fight Kosilek's request.

Convicted killer. Demands sex change. Isn't told to just shut up and go back into the cell. You might be forgiven, reading the first few paragraphs of the story, for assuming that the inmate in question is a woman who wants to become a man. No -- it's a man convicted of killing his wife. The Associated Press apparently made an editorial decision that the killer's stated wish to be a woman is reason enough to refer to "her" as a woman.

If this becomes a move hailed as a "much-needed retelling of 'The Birdman of Alcatraz' story," I won't rush to get the DVD, but I won't be terribly surprised, either.

Posted in: Current Affairs