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Q&A: Khat illegal in United States

Khat illegal in United States

Recently there was an article about a man arrested for transporting khat through Georgia. Is khat illegal in the United States?

According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, khat is illegal in the United States. Capt. Mark Mayton, the commander of the Bartow-Cartersville Drug Task Force, said that Hussein Dahir Sheikaden, 31, was charged with possession of a Schedule I narcotic with the intent to distribute.

Mayton said khat, a flowering evergreen shrub native to East Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, is legal in some European countries as well. The plant is chewed like tobacco and induces "manic behavior with grandiose delusions," according to the Partnership for a Drug-Free America.

Errant pilots update

I am wondering whether the pilots who were on their computers and overshot the destination had gotten their licenses back?

Timothy Cheney and Richard Cole, the pilots on the Northwest Airlines flight who overshot the Minneapolis airport by more than 100 miles in October 2009, were able to apply for new licenses with the Federal Aviation Administration on Aug. 29 as part of the settlement agreement. An FAA spokesman said there is no indication that they have reapplied for their licenses.

Don't fear salmonella in vaccine

There has been a lot of news lately about salmonella in eggs. Eggs are used to make flu vaccine. Is it possible to get salmonella poisoning through the flu vaccine?

The Food and Drug Administration and vaccine manufacturers tell the Wall Street Journal that the salmonella outbreak in eggs for consumption and recall does not affect flu vaccine production, safety or availability for 2010-11.

One reason is because "the eggs used to make the flu vaccine come from different farms than those sold to consumers as food," the paper reported. In addition, the eggs used for vaccines are fertilized and tested vigorously, and steps in the manufacturing process remove salmonella and other bacteria, officials told the newspaper.

Alternatives to orphanages

Are there still orphanages in the United States?

There still are orphanages, a term that is not used as regularly as in the past but is defined as institutional or group care facilities that house children, according to the Child Welfare Information Gateway, which is part of the Department of Health and Human Services.

Instead, children are placed in family settings or residential facilities that provide services and help them reunite with their families or find other permanent families, according to www.childwelfare.gov.

A 2004 study supported by the Center of Adoption Research at the University of Massachusetts identified more than 60 institutions nationwide for the care of children and youth in foster care.

Q&A: Khat illegal in United States 09/16/10 [Last modified: Thursday, September 16, 2010 5:30am]

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