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Tim Tebow and the power of courage

Tim Tebow smiles at the camera as he signs a one-year contract Monday afternoon with the Philadelphia Eagles, April 20, 2015 (Credit: Philadelphia Eagles) Tim Tebow is back in the news.  The Philadelphia Eagles have signed him as their fourth quarterback, in time for their offseason workout program.

Meanwhile, the Islamic State has released a video showing militants beheading 15 Ethiopian Christians in Libya and shooting 15 more.  Americans continue to remember the Oklahoma City bombing 20 years after 168 people were killed.  Two ships in the Mediterranean sank over the weekend, killing hundreds.  And six Somali-Americans were arrested last Sunday for allegedly recruiting new members for the Islamic State.

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Mother forgave Aaron Hernandez for killing her son

Ursula Ward, mother of shooting victim Odin Lloyd, looks up to the heavens as she talks about her deceased son outside Bristol County Superior Court on April 15, 2015, in Fall River, Massachusetts, after former New England Patriots football player Aaron Hernandez was found guilty of murder in the shooting death of Odin Lloyd (Credit: AP/Stew Milne)"I forgive the hands of the people who had a hand in my son's murder—either before or after—and I pray and hope that some day everybody out there will forgive them also." So said Ursula Ward less than an hour after a jury convicted former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez of killing her son.

She added, "I will never have a grandchild from my son or grandchildren.  I will never get to dance at his wedding."  She told the packed courtroom, "The day I laid my son Odin Lloyd to rest I felt my heart stop beating for a moment.  I felt like I wanted to go into that hole with my son."  Nonetheless, the grieving mother has chosen to forgive the man convicted of his murder.

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Website claims affairs help marriages

Adultery concept - a young man with his arm around one woman while holding hands with another woman, all walking down a brick path (Credit: Michael Jung via Fotolia)Ashley Madison exists to help married people have affairs.  With 34 million members, it claims to be the world's second-largest dating website, second only to Match.com.  Avid Life Media, which owns Ashley Madison and related websites, values itself at $1 billion.  The company reported revenue of $115 million last year, up 45 percent from 2013.  It is making news today with plans to raise up to $200 million by listing its shares in London.  

The company claims that it helps married couples: "The response we get from our members who have had an affair via the website is that they feel happier, invigorated and transmit that happiness, which actually reinforces and ignites a spark in their marriage and relationships."

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U.S. to exhume Pearl Harbor remains

Pearl Harbor survivor Bill Johnson reads the list of names inscribed in the USS Arizona Memorial, January 20, 2004 (Credit: U.S. Navy/Chief Journalist David Rush) When I first saw this headline, I was horrified.  My visit to Pearl Harbor was one of the most poignant experiences of my life.  Standing over the sunken remains of the USS Arizona, the final resting place of 1,102 sailors and Marines, was something I would never forget.

The headline caused me to think that government authorities would be raising the ship, an act that seemed to desecrate the memories of those who died there.  Then I read further: the nearly 400 servicemen to be exhumed died on the USS Oklahoma, not the Arizona.  They could not be identified, so they were buried in caskets marked as "unknown" at a national cemetery in Hawaii.  Now forensic and DNA testing may help authorities discover their identities and allow families to give them a personal burial.  And so what seemed to be bad news turned out to be good news.

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The presidential candidates: one of us?

The Presidential Seal is seen on a podium at the White House in Washington (Credit: Reuters/Larry Downing) Hillary Clinton announced her candidacy for president on YouTube and then traveled 17 hours by van to campaign in Iowa.  Ted Cruz made his announcement first on Twitter, and later at a university.  Rand Paul announced his candidacy in a hotel ballroom.  Marco Rubio made his announcement at the Freedom Tower in Miami, known as the "Ellis Island of the South."

The presidency is arguably the most powerful and prestigious office in the world.  Why would its candidates work so hard to be so down-to-earth?

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