Attribution: Memorial Day by John Darkow, Columbia Missourian
Today is Decoration Day at Bowers Chapel cemetery where my paternal ancestors are all buried going back to the civil war. It is a time of putting flowers on graves and remembering our dead. My sisters and I went yesterday and put flowers on my parents and grandparent’s graves. Over in the Southwest corner of the cemetery rests my paternal line. Going back to the civil war is Benjamin, then James, my grandfather and last my father. My history all in one corner of a small cemetery. Decoration Day is a tradition that is dying out. Families have scattered. The graves are too.
Today’s song, Lorena, goes back to before the civil war and was a popular song for both sides. It is sad and sentimental, there were times when playing or singing it was banned as it was believed to be bad for moral.
Performed by 97th Regimental String Band
Lazy Bones’ Lazy Hazy Days
Is Kentucky lazy? Yes, but not as lazy as Alabama (lanereport.com)
Research has revealed the laziest states in the US, with Alabama coming out on top. The study by online fitness resource TotalShape.com analyzed a study from America’s Health Rankings to see which states had the highest percentage of adults who reported doing no physical activity or exercise other than their regular job in the past 30 days.
Alabama topped the study with the highest % inactive adults, with 31.5%. Physical inactivity among those aged 65 and over in the state sits at 41.3%, more than ten percentage points higher than the national average of 31.2%. Inactivity of adults aged 45-64 also sits at 37.4%, 12 percentage points higher than the national average of 25.4% for that age group.
Coming in second is the state of Mississippi, which comes in with a percentage of 30.9%. 25% of adults aged between reported being physically inactive, with 35.6% of adults aged 45-64 and 36.2% of adults aged 65 and over-reporting the same.
The southern state of Arkansas takes third place on the list, with a percentage of 30.6%. 40% of adults aged over 65 reported physical inactivity, which is almost ten percentage points higher than the national average of 31.2%. 34.3% of adults aged 45-64 and 23% aged 18-44 also reported the same.
Tied for fourth place are the states of West Virginia and Kentucky, both coming in with a percentage of 30.5%. In West Virginia, 41% of adults over 65 reported physical inactivity, whereas 37.2% reported the same in Kentucky. Physical inactivity among adults aged 45-64 is around the same in both states, with West Virginia reporting 34.2% and Kentucky reporting 33.2%. When it comes to adults aged 18-44, West Virginia saw 20.6% of this age group report physical inactivity, and in Kentucky, this sits at 25.2%
Rounding out the top five is Louisiana, with an overall percentage of 29.4%. 40.5% of adults over 65 reported physical inactivity, and 30.1% of adults aged 45-64 reported the same thing. 23.6% of adults aged 18-44 also reported physical inactivity.
Source: America’s Health Rankings analysis of CDC, Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, United Health Foundation, AmericasHealthRankings.org, accessed 2023.
If He Only Had a Brain
Elon Musk’s brain implant company Neuralink approved for in-human study | Elon Musk | The Guardian
Neuralink, Elon Musk’s brain-implant company, said on Thursday it had received a green light from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to kickstart its first in-human clinical study, a critical milestone after earlier struggles to gain approval.
Musk has predicted on at least four occasions since 2019 that his medical device company would begin human trials for a brain implant to treat severe conditions such as paralysis and blindness.
Yet the company, founded in 2016, only sought FDA approval in early 2022 – and the agency rejected the application, seven current and former employees told Reuters in March.
The FDA had pointed out several concerns to Neuralink that needed to be addressed before sanctioning human trials, according to the employees. Major issues involved the lithium battery of the device, the possibility of the implant’s wires migrating within the brain and the challenge of safely extracting the device without damaging brain tissue.
Thursday’s FDA approval comes as US lawmakers are urging regulators to investigate whether the make-up of a panel overseeing animal testing at Neuralink contributed to botched and rushed experiments.
Neuralink has already been the subject of federal investigations.
Last year, the USDA’s inspector general began investigating, at the request of a federal prosecutor, potential violations of the Animal Welfare Act, which governs how researchers treat and test certain types of animals. The company has killed about 1,500 animals, including more than 280 sheep, pigs and monkeys, following experiments since 2018, Reuters previously reported.
The inquiry has also been looking at the USDA’s oversight of Neuralink.
In a tweet on Thursday, Neuralink said it is not yet open for a clinical trial.
“This is the result of incredible work by the Neuralink team in close collaboration with the FDA and represents an important first step that will one day allow our technology to help many people,” the company said in a tweet on Thursday.
Over the years, Musk has publicly outlined an ambitious plan for Neuralink. He made headlines late last year when he said he was already so confident in the device’s safety that he would be willing to implant them in his own children.
Musk envisions both disabled and healthy individuals swiftly getting surgical implants at local centers. These devices aim to cure a range of conditions from obesity, autism, depression and schizophrenia, to enabling web browsing and telepathy.