American Morning

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April 2nd, 2010
07:00 AM ET

Once a rising star, chef now feeds hungry

By Danielle Berger, CNN

Madurai, India (CNN) - Naryanan Krishnan was a bright, young, award-winning chef with a five-star hotel group, short-listed for an elite job in Switzerland. But a quick family visit home before heading to Europe changed everything.

"I saw a very old man [eating] his own human waste for hunger," Krishnan said. "It really hurt me so much. I was literally shocked for a second. After that, I started feeding that man and decided this is what I should do the rest of my lifetime."

Krishnan was visiting a temple in the south Indian city of Madurai in 2002 when he saw the man under a bridge. Haunted by the image, Krishnan quit his job within the week and returned home for good, convinced of his new destiny.

"That spark and that inspiration is a driving force still inside me as a flame - to serve all the mentally ill destitutes and people who cannot take care of themselves," Krishnan said.

Krishnan founded his nonprofit Akshaya Trust in 2003. Now 29, he has served more than 1.2 million meals - breakfast, lunch and dinner - to India's homeless and destitute, mostly elderly people abandoned by their families and often abused. FULL STORY

Do you know a hero? Nominations are open for 2010 CNN Heroes

Filed under: CNN Heroes
April 2nd, 2010
06:00 AM ET

Avlon: Militia arrests raise questions about political landscape

Editor’s note: John P. Avlon is a senior political columnist for The Daily Beast and author of the new book "Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America." Previously, he served as chief speechwriter for New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and was a columnist and associate editor for The New York Sun.

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="CNN Independent analyst John Avlon says the arrest of the Hutaree militia group raises new questions about the fear-fueled fringes of the political landscape."]

By John Avlon, Special to CNN

We’ve seen a ratcheting up of violent rhetoric and even violent plots in recent weeks. This edition of Wingnuts of the Week takes a look at a new Code Pink “citizen’s arrest” of Karl Rove and the real arrest of the Hutaree militia.

Militia movements exist well off the grid when it comes to conventional domestic politics. But the arrest of the Michigan-based Hutaree anti-government militia group raised new questions about the increasingly ugly and fear-fueled fringes of the political landscape.

The small, self-style Christian militia group (members say “Hutaree” means “Christian warrior”), led by father David Stone, was arrested by the FBI early this week on charges that they plotted to murder a local law enforcement officer and then bomb his funeral procession to up the body count in an attempt to spur a civil war in the United States.

This is the latest sign of the estimated 300% increase in militia groups – as detailed by the Southern Poverty Law Center – that we’ve seen in America during the first year of the Obama administration. Not all militia groups can be classified as violent extremists, but this rapid growth indicates an unwelcome return to the heated atmosphere of the mid-1990s, when militia movements proliferated in the wake of Bill Clinton’s election and incidents at Ruby Ridge and the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas. The era ended after Timothy McVeigh destroyed the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing more than 160 innocent men, women and children.


Filed under: Opinion • Politics • Wingnuts of the week
April 2nd, 2010
05:55 AM ET

LIVE Blog: Chat with us during the show

Editor's Note: Welcome to American Morning's LIVE Blog where you can discuss the "most news in the morning" with us each and every day. Join the live chat during the program by adding your comments below. It's your chance to share your thoughts on the day's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules: 1) Keep it brief 2) No writing in ALL CAPS 3) Use your real name (first name only is fine) 4) No links 5) Watch your language (that includes $#&*).

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano will announce new airport security measures on Friday."]

New airport security measures to be announced Friday

(CNN) – All flights entering the United States will be subjected to a new level of security screening, officials plan to announce Friday.

The new security measures, that will be announced by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, will use "real-time, threat-based intelligence," according to the official.

The new measures will supersede the measures put in place immediately after the attempted terror attack on Christmas Day 2009, the official said.

"These new, enhanced measures are part of a dynamic, threat-based aviation security system covering all passengers traveling by air to the United States," the official said. "To more effectively mitigate evolving terrorist threats, these measures utilize multiple, random layers of security, both seen and unseen and are tailored to intelligence about potential threats." FULL STORY

Church expands flock on Facebook

The church has never be an organization accused of keeping up with the trends, but now places of worship are using social networks like Twitter and Facebook to expand the flock.

Church 2.0 – where followers are believers. Carol Costello will have the story live for us from Washington.

Apple's iPad meets its critics

Just one day, now, until Apple's iPad is released, but the reviews are already in. The Wall Street Journal is calling it a "wicked fast" "lap-top killer."

The New York Times is not too happy with its touch-screen keyboard or lack of a camera, but still calling it "deeply satisfying" and "goof-proof."

It's being called one of the hottest new pieces of technology ever, but will it live up to the hype?

Arik Hesseldahl is the senior technology reporter from and he'll join us with a preview.

Sound off: We want to hear from you this morning. Add your comments to the LIVE blog below and we'll read some of them on the show.

Filed under: LIVE Blog • Top Stories
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