Ringo Starr: ‘Vatican has more to talk about than the Beatles’

By Phil Han, CNN
April 13, 2010 — Updated 0153 GMT (0953 HKT)

London, England (CNN) — The Vatican may have forgiven the Beatles over the weekend for their “satanic” messages — but Ringo Starr, the legendary band’s drummer, says he couldn’t care less.

In a tribute published to mark the 40th anniversary of the breakup of the band, who singer John Lennon once claimed were “more popular than Jesus,” the Vatican newspaper “L’Osservatore Romano” said it had forgiven them and called them a “precious jewel.”

But Starr told CNN: “Didn’t the Vatican say we were satanic or possibly satanic — and they’ve still forgiven us? I think the Vatican, they’ve got more to talk about than the Beatles.”

Starr was speaking to CNN’s Becky Anderson about the launch of his latest solo album called “Y Not,” which was released in January.

Did you know McCartney had trouble learning the guitar? Find out why in our interactive

“I was sitting around in LA and I went on the synth and just got some rhythm patterns with some chords I enjoyed and then drummed to that,” Starr said.

“We had no song and we just played something and kept it moving and that’s how it all happened.”

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The album is Starr’s 15th album as a solo artist.

Starr also responded to allegations that he had asked his fans to “back off” and explained why he no longer signs autographs.

“I just said to fans that I’m not signing anymore,” Starr said.

“That what it was, it wasn’t back off, I’m not a vicious man. I don’t sign anymore, people say sign this and I just say no.”

ロンドン(CNN) 「ビートルズはキリストよりも人気がある」という故ジョン・レノンの発言をめぐり、ローマ法王庁が機関紙でこの発言を許すと表明した。しかし元ビートルズのリンゴ・スターは「(許しなど)どうでもいい」と気にするそぶりを見せていない。




Connecticut bishops fight sex abuse bill

2010.4.16 時事英語研究会のテキストです。

From Jamie Guzzardo, CNN
April 12, 2010 — Updated 0230 GMT (1030 HKT)

Hartford, Connecticut (CNN) — A bill in Connecticut’s legislature that would remove the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse cases has sparked a fervent response from the state’s Roman Catholic bishops, who released a letter to parishioners Saturday imploring them to oppose the measure.

コネチカット州ハートフォード(CNN)-子供への性的虐待訴訟の時効を削除するというコネチカット議会の法案は、同州のローマカトリック司教らから強烈な反響を呼び起こしている。 司教らは、土曜日に信徒(教会区民)へ手紙を送り、その措置に反対するように願い出た。

Under current Connecticut law, sexual abuse victims have 30 years past their 18th birthday to file a lawsuit. The proposed change to the law would rescind that statute of limitations.


The proposed change to the law would put “all Church institutions, including your parish, at risk,” says the letter, which was signed by Connecticut’s three Roman Catholic bishops.


The letter is posted on the Web site of the Connecticut Catholic Public Affairs Conference, the public policy and advocacy office of Connecticut’s Catholic bishops. It asks parishioners to contact their legislators in opposition of the bill.


The “legislation would undermine the mission of the Catholic Church in Connecticut, threatening our parishes, our schools, and our Catholic Charities,” the letter says.


The Catholic archdiocese of Hartford also published a pulpit announcement on its Web site, which was to be read during Mass on Sunday, urging parishioners to express opposition to the bill.

ハートフォードのカトリック大司教も、説教壇で発表を行い、その内容がウエブ上で公開された。 また日曜日のミサで読まれ、同案を反対するよう協会区民にハッパをかけることになっていた。

The bill has been revised to address some of the church’s concerns about frivolous abuse claims against it, according to Connecticut state Rep. Beth Bye, one of the bill’s sponsors.


“The church didn’t recognize that this bill makes improvements,” Bye said. “The victims — their lives have been changed and some will never recover from years of sexual abuse. For me, it’s about giving them access to the courts.”

「教会側は、この法案が改善をもたらすと認めませんでした」と、Byeが言いました。 (性的虐待の)犠牲者たち。 — 彼らの人生は変わりはて、そして、長年の性的虐待から決して立ち直れない者もいるというのに。 私にしてみれば、そういう子供たちに法廷で闘う道を与えることがすべてなのです。

Under the bill’s provisions, anyone older than 48 who makes a sex abuse claim against the church would need to join an existing claim filed by someone 48 or younger. Older claimants would need to show substantial proof that they were abused.


“They were worried about frivolous lawsuits and so we made the bar high,” Bye said.

The bill does not target the Catholic Church, she said.

彼ら(教会側)は軽薄な訴訟が出ることについて懸念を持っています。 なので、我々はハードルを高くしました。(BYE氏談) カトリック教会に狙いを定めたものではないのです。

The bishops’ letter raised concerns that the bill would allow claims that are 70 years or older, in which “key individuals are deceased, memories have been faded, and documents and other evidence have been lost.” The letter said that the majority of cases would be driven by “trial lawyers hoping to profit from these cases.”


The bill passed in Connecticut’s House of Representatives, and Bye said the state Senate should vote on it in the next week or two.



Death toll from Bangkok protests climbs to 21




その中に、騒乱に巻き込まれて死亡したロイターの日本人カメラマン 村本博之さんも含まれています。


From Kocha Olarn, CNN
April 12, 2010 — Updated 0545 GMT (1345 HKT)

Bangkok, Thailand (CNN) — The death toll from the weekend’s clashes between anti-government protesters and Thai security forces climbed to 21, authorities said.

Of the dead, 17 are civilians and four are military, the Bangkok Emergency Medical Service said Sunday.

The clashes on Saturday also left 858 injured, the service said.

The protesters, known as the “Red Shirts,” for their clothing, organized a funeral ritual for their members at Phan Fa Bridge on Sunday. Thousands of protesters attended.

In addition, the protesters seized six military vehicles, smashing their windows, and blocked part of the major Pinklao Bridge.

The government, meanwhile, said it was asking officers to return to their bases to refresh and prepare for the next operation.

The protesters’ group, the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship, said it is unwilling to sit down for negotiations with the government unless it is to discuss the dissolution of the lower house of parliament.

The anti-government protesters have been demanding for days that Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva dissolve the parliamentary body and call new elections. In addition, Red Shirts leader Weng Tojirakarn said the group wants the prime minister to leave the country.

As noon approached, a group of about 100 Red Shirts gathered in front of a satellite center compound, successfully getting it to lift a government shutdown of the opposition television, People Channel Television (PTV).

The compound distributes a signal for PTV, the primary communication channel between the Red Shirt leaders and the group’s supporters in the provinces.

iReport: Pictures of Bangkok protests

The government shut down the station, saying it was spreading misinformation to Thais.

Clashes broke out Saturday when military and police forces used tear gas and rubber bullets to contain protesters who were trying to break into military barracks.

Among those killed was Hiro Muramoto, a Japanese cameraman with Thomson Reuters, state media said.

Royal Thai Army spokesman Col. Sansern Kawekamnerd told reporters that security forces only fired real bullets into the air to scare away protesters.

He said the demonstrators fired real bullets at the security forces, and that many security officers were injured.

The protesters kidnapped six soldiers, Sansern said. Two were later released, he said.

After the bloodshed, the Red Shirt protesters and the military declared a temporary truce. It was not immediately clear how long the truce will last.

Earlier this week, authorities issued a state of emergency, allowing the military to break up large gatherings. The state of emergency also permits authorities to take certain actions, including arresting and searching people, without court orders.

The demonstrations have plunged Thai stocks by more than 24 points, or about 3 percent, after the government declared the state of emergency.

The anti-government group is comprised of supporters of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a bloodless military coup in 2006.

He fled the country in 2008 while facing trial on corruption charges that he says were politically motivated. He remains hugely popular.