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Kim Kardashian defends Kanye West, accuses Twitter users of ‘demonizing’ him

Musician Kanye West made his return to Twitter earlier this month to chat about a number of topics from new music to politics. However, some of his tweet have fallen flat and have not been well received, so his wife Kim Kardashian West is now coming to his defense. 

>> Read more trending news 

Many on social media have expressed concern over West’s mental health, but Kardashian West said he’s only expressing himself. 

“To the media trying to demonize my husband let me just say this... your commentary on Kanye being erratic & his tweets being disturbing is actually scary,” she wrote. “So quick to label him as having mental health issues for just being himself when he has always been expressive is not fair.”

>> Related: Kanye West is dropping a new album and the internet is ‘freaking out’

She also accused the media of interpreting his separation from his management as a mental health issue rather than a business decision. In fact, the reality star called her hubby a “free thinker” and celebrated him for sharing his opinions even if she didn’t agree with them, including those about President Donald Trump. 

 >> Related: Kanye West announces he will be president some day

She ended her rant by declaring “Kanye is years ahead of his time” and urged the media stop using the term “mental health” so loosely.

>> Related: Kanye West’s embrace of a black Trump supporter not well-received 

For the last several weeks, West has been busy on Twitter after taking a nearly year-long hiatus from the platform. He’s revealed information about his clothing line, new albums and has even alluded to running for president in 2024.

He’s also used the site to share his thoughts about creativity, fake news and a few images of his daughter North. Take a look at more of his posts here

Florida woman says HOA member told her to remove rainbow flag

A rainbow flag has created controversy in a Brevard County, Florida, neighborhood -- so much so that one HOA member compared it to the Confederate flag.

>> Read more trending news

A renter in Rockledge's Ashwood Lakes subdivision said she was told to lower a gay pride flag after having flown it for two years.

"It's a symbol of acceptance, tolerance and equality," said Jenifer Raymond, a mother of three. "They're saying it's offensive. To me, that's like saying I'm offensive because I exist."

Raymond said her landlord received an email from a member of the neighborhood's architectural review committee, saying only American, state or military flags may be flown.

When it was pointed out that the community bylaws don't mention flags, the member cited part of the "ground maintenance section," saying it was deemed offensive and detrimental to the subdivision.

"Allowing the flag to be flown is setting a precedence for other homeowners to fly other offensive flags -- for example, the Confederate flag," the email said.

Raymond said she was astonished by the email.

"The Confederacy supported slavery," she said. "(The rainbow flag is) a symbol of equality and acceptance of all."

Other flags were spotted in the subdivision, including one depicting a flower, a Florida Gators flag and a Thin Blue Line flag, which is flown in support of law enforcement officers.

Those homeowners said they've never been asked to remove their flags.

An HOA attorney said if bylaws don't specifically limit flags and other flags are allowed, that could be considered discrimination.

"I'm not asking you to agree with me," Raymond said. "I'm asking you to respect my rights the same as yours."

Another member of the committee, who's also an HOA board member, said he was unaware of the email. He said the member who wrote it doesn't speak on behalf of the HOA, and he said he'll look into the matter.

Embattled VA nominee Ronny Jackson accused of drunken driving, drug use

President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Department of Veteran’s Affairs is under fire for a series of alleged incidents that have left Congressional Republicans and Democrats wondering whether the Trump administration properly vetted White House physician Ronny Jackson. 

>> Read more trending news 

Jackson, a rear admiral in the Navy and physician to the president since 2013 under Barack Obama, is facing numerous allegations involving wrongdoing and questionable behavior. 

He’s been called “the Candy Man,” according to news reports, for reportedly handing out prescriptions for sleep aids to White House staff members and even reporters. A White House staffer told the Senate Veteran’s Affairs Committee Jackson gave “a large supply” of the prescription opioid Percocet to a White House military office worker and that Jackson’s staff was “panicked” when it couldn’t account for the missing drugs, according to The New York Times.

>> Related: Senate postpones hearing for Trump VA pick Ronny Jackson amid 'serious allegations'

The Times also reported Jackson wrote himself prescriptions, then asked a physician assistant to give him the meds when he got caught.

He’s accused of drunken driving and reportedly crashed a government vehicle while intoxicated after attending a Secret Service party, which he denies, CNN reported. Jackson is also accused of getting drunk on an overseas trip and banging on the hotel room door of a female colleague.

>> Related: Who is White House physician Ronny L. Jackson?

Some of these allegations are part of a two-page document on Jackson compiled by Democrats on the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee. 

The Trump administration has called the allegations against Jackson “unfair,” and Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday the president stands behind his nominee.

After the Senate postponed Jackson’s confirmation hearing on Monday amid these allegations of improper behavior, the White House closed ranks, supporting Jackson’s nomination, even though Trump, in a meeting Monday afternoon, told Jackson he’d understand if Jackson pulled out of the process. 

The doctor told reporters on Monday he plans on rescheduling the canceled hearing.

>> Related: Trump replacing VA Sec. David Shulkin with his personal physician Admiral Ronny L. Jackson

Jackson’s nomination for Veterans Affairs secretary follows Trump’s termination of David Shulkin last month after reports of tension at the agency and allegations of misuse of funds.

 

NFL Draft Fun Facts

NFL Draft Fun Facts

Illicit affair prompted ‘calculated, planned’ murder-suicide that left 2 women dead, police say

Two women are dead, including a 2016 candidate for a Delaware State Senate seat, in a Pennsylvania murder-suicide that investigators said was sparked by one woman’s affair with the other’s husband. 

Radnor Township police officials reported Tuesday that Jennair Gerardot, 47, of Wilmington, Delaware, broke into the rental home of 33-year-old Meredith Sullivan Chapman on Monday and waited for Chapman to return home from work at Villanova University, where she was recently named an assistant vice president. 

According to the Villanovan, the university’s newspaper, Chapman started her new job a week before she was killed. She lived in the house where she died about the same length of time. 

“Couldn’t be more excited...,” she wrote online Monday, about two hours before she was killed. “Just a week on the job and I’m already feeling the love from #NovaNation.”

When Chapman arrived home Monday evening, Gerardot shot her once in the head before turning the gun on herself. Gerardot also died of a single gunshot wound to the head, Radnor Township Deputy Chief Christopher Flanagan said during a news conference Tuesday afternoon. 

>> Read more trending news

A Taurus Tracker .357 Magnum revolver was found at the crime scene, with two of its seven rounds missing. 

Investigators believe Gerardot took a train from Delaware to Chapman’s home – while wearing a wig and clothing later found discarded in a bag at the scene -- and broke in through the front door, cleaning up the glass so her target would not notice anything wrong when she came home. 

“It’s not a love triangle. You had a man who was married that was having an affair with this other woman,” Radnor Township Police Superintendent William Colarulo said during the news conference. 

“The wife knew about it. And this was a calculated, planned attack,” Colarulo said. “She broke into the house. She was lying in wait, and she shot her as soon as she walked in, and then she shot herself. 

“There were emails and text messages indicating what she planned to do. Detectives are still sorting that out.”

Flanagan said Tuesday that officers were called to Chapman’s home just after 7 p.m. Monday after receiving a 911 call reporting two people down and blood inside the residence. They were met in the driveway by Gerardot’s husband, Mark Gerardot, who said he believed his wife might be inside the house. 

The officers went inside the home and found both women dead in the kitchen.

Flanagan said that Mark Gerardot, 49, told police officers that he and his wife were having domestic problems that also involved Chapman. Investigators said he had been led to believe that Chapman would be meeting him nearby for dinner. 

The Courier-Express in DuBois, Pennsylvania, reported that Mark Gerardot was waiting for Chapman to show up when he began receiving disturbing text messages from his wife. He went to Chapman’s home because of those messages and found the bodies. 

See the entire Radnor Township police news conference, streamed live Tuesday by the News Journal in Wilmington, below. 

Chapman’s neighbor, Melissa DeJoseph, told the Inquirer she saw the victim drive up between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. and, with a bag over her shoulder, walk toward the door. A few seconds later, she heard sharp noises from inside the house.

“In my head, I was, like, ‘Is that a gunshot? No, it can’t be a gunshot,’” DeJoseph told the Inquirer

Other neighbors also reported hearing the gunshots. 

Chapman was married to Luke Chapman, a former Newark city councilman, but they were no longer living together, the Inquirer reported. Luke Chapman announced earlier this year that he would not run for a fourth term in office. 

Prior to her position at Villanova, Meredith Chapman served as senior director of marketing for the University of Delaware, where she also got her college degree. She also taught at the university as an adjunct professor. 

She worked on several political campaigns, as well as on Capitol Hill, where she collaborated with former Vice President Joe Biden when he was a Delaware state senator, according to her Facebook page. She served as communications manager for then-U.S. Rep. Mike Castle in 2007 and 2008, the News Journal reported

Chapman ran unsuccessfully for a Delaware State Senate seat in 2016, losing the election to opponent Dave Sokola.

Sokola expressed shock at the news of Chapman’s slaying.

“Kathy and I are stunned by the news about Meredith and I’m deeply, deeply saddened to learn that such a promising young woman’s life has been cut so short,” Sokola wrote on Facebook. “I’ve always respected my opponents and Meredith was certainly no exception. She was sharp, hard-working and motivated by a sincere desire to serve her community. She was bound for great things and it’s tragic for that light to go out so soon.

“I’ve also had the privilege to work with her husband, Luke, over the years, and he especially is in our hearts today. We wish him strength, peace, and privacy in what we know is an incredibly difficult and painful time."

Like Sokola, Chapman’s friends expressed shock on social media. 

“I’m absolutely floored,” Richard Wisk wrote. “Meredith, RIP, you will be missed tremendously.”

Colleen Auer-Smith described Chapman as a bright light and a “ray of sunshine.”

“Why of all people? I don’t understand,” Auer-Smith wrote. 

A family spokesperson described Chapman as a “beacon of light” to all who knew her in a statement obtained by the News Journal.

“She loved her family fiercely, was a compassionate friend and among the most talented and innovative professionals in her field,” the statement read. “Her death was sudden and tragic, but will not define who she was to the thousands of people who loved her. Her family is devastated, heartbroken and requests privacy and respect as they grieve.”

Mark Gerardot worked as a creative director at the University of Delaware until earlier this month, when he left that position. Before her move to Villanova University, Chapman was his supervisor, the News Journal reported

He and his wife also previously ran their own marketing and design company, the Inquirer reported. 

Jennair Gerardot also spent five years as marketing manager for a South Carolina-based marketing company, Circor Instrumentation, before leaving that job in December. 

According to a post she wrote on the NextDoor neighborhood app in February, she left her position at Circor because of her husband’s new job at the University of Delaware. 

The Inquirer, which tracked down Gerardot’s post, reported that she went on NextDoor pleading for help with her marriage.

“I just transferred to Delaware in December for my husband’s new job, and he’s telling me he wants a divorce,” she wrote, according to the newspaper. “I don’t know anyone and am completely clueless to the area.”

She asked for a recommendation for a reputable, successful and driven divorce lawyer. 

Gerardot returned to NextDoor in March. 

“Please recommend an EXCELLENT marriage counselor for couple on the brink of divorce,” she wrote. 

The Inquirer reported that the posts did not make clear whether the couple ever sought counseling. 

Hypnobirthing delivery technique reportedly used by Kate Middleton but what is it?

Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, formerly known as Kate Middleton, gave birth to a baby boy on Monday.

>> Read more trending news 

This is the third child for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who welcomed their new son into the world in the Lindo Wing at St Mary’s Hospital in London.

According to reports, Middleton endured a five-hour labor without pain relief as a part of a delivery method called hypnobirthing. This isn’t the first time she’s tried it. Middleton has used the practice for all three of her babies. 

What is hypnobirthing?

It’s a type of therapy that helps parents seek a natural birthing experience with more patient control and less pain, according to Hypnobirthing.com. It involves special breathing, relaxation, visualization, meditative practice and attention to nutrition and body. The method can be practiced at home, in a hospital or birth center.

>> Related: Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, gives birth to baby boy

How exactly does it work?

Hypnobirthing is an effort at removing the anxiety associated with the birthing experience. Experts believe fear activates stress hormones that cause slow digestion and an increased heart rate. Blood is also forced to the arms and legs, which depletes blood to the uterus. This is what contributes to uterine pain. 

>> Related: What will Kate and Wills name new royal baby?

Parents can take hypnobirthing classes to learn specific breathing and visualization techniques, according to WebMD. For example, many courses teach mothers to self-hypnotize with their open eyes. Instructors may also encourage expectant moms to envision an easy birth and recite affirmations, such as “I relax and my baby relaxes.” Phrases that reference the difficulty of childbirth are rejected. Instead of using the words “pain” or “contraction,” patients are encouraged to say “sensation” or “surge” instead. 

Do you still feel pain?

A 2006 review of five previous studies found that women who chose hypnobirthing were almost half as likely to use painkillers and about one-third less likely to use an epidural during labor.

Who else has used this practice?

Celebrities, including Angelina Jolie and Jessica Alba, have also reportedly tried hypnobirthing. During an appearance on Ellen, Alba said “it’s not a weird thing.” 

>> Related: 4 fast facts about Kate Middleton

“It's not like the clock in front of your face and you go out and you wake up and you got a baby,” she joked. “My husband takes me through sort of a meditation. He'll say, 'you're relaxed, and you're floating on clouds while you're going through labor and your contractions. I'm just concentrating on breathing and staying relaxed...when you get tense that makes the whole labor worse and more painful.”

Your Daily Pitch - Top Headlines for 4.25.18

Your Daily Pitch - Top Headlines for 4.25.18

Suspected 'Golden State Killer' identified as ex-cop decades after serial rapes, murders

A 72-year-old California man has been arrested after authorities said DNA tests pegged him as the Golden State Killer, a serial murderer and rapist who terrorized the state in the 1970s and 1980s.

>> Read more trending news

On a diet? Avoid carbs or should you? Here’s what the science says

You’ve probably seen advertisers or bloggers blaming carbohydrates for your inability to lose weight. Or you may have a friend or family member in your life who’s cut carbs as part of a trendy new diet plan.

>> Read more trending news 

While some dietitians have advocated cutting carbs to shed a few pounds, others have suggested the exact opposite. When it comes down to it, what does the science actually say? Are carbs good or bad?

Here's what you should know and understand about carbohydrates.

What are carbs?

According to Live Science, carbs are "one of the basic food groups" and important to "a healthy life." They are the fibers, starches and sugars found in grains, milk products, fruits and vegetables.

>> Related: These 9 healthy-sounding foods have more sugar than a Krispy Kreme doughnut

"Carbohydrates are macronutrients, meaning they are one of the three main ways the body obtains energy, or calories," Paige Smathers, a registered dietitian, said.

There are three types of macronutrients: proteins, fats and carbohydrates. These are essential to keep our bodies functioning properly. Carbohydrates serve as fuel for our central nervous systems and energy to make our muscles function. 

>> Related: 4 carb-filled breakfast foods that won't ruin your diet

Are there different kinds of carbs?

Scientists and nutritionists classify carbohydrates into two groups: simple and complex. The chemical structure of each group is actually different.

Simple carbs generally are dissolved by the body quicker, and contain just one or two sugars. These can be readily found in things like candy, soda and syrups. As these foods don't have vitamins, minerals or fiber, they are often referred to as "empty calories" and can more easily lead to weight gain.

Unlike simple carbs, complex carbs have at least three sugars. Often referred to as starchy foods, complex carbs can be found in lentils, beans, peas, peanuts, potatoes, cereals and whole-grain breads. 

>> Related: Cutting the carbs: Everything you need to know about the South Beach Diet 

Smathers said that while simple carbs may provide a spike in energy quicker, complex carbs provide a sustained source of energy. 

"It's best to focus on getting primarily complex carbs in your diet, including whole grains and vegetables," she said.

imple carbs have previously been linked to an increased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes, according to some studies.

Do low carb diets work?

Experts actually tend to agree that low-carb diets are not a sustainable weight loss solution.

Part of this is because its difficult to stick with these diets. A 2013 study by researchers at Harvard University found that only 78 percent of dieters on low-carb plans stuck with it for the long term, according to Health. Conversely, 90 percent of people on high-carb diets stuck with it for the long haul.

While you may lose weight by cutting your carb intake, you can also shed pounds just as easily by adjusting the carbs you eat. Simple carbs have little nutritional value, and should be avoided. Complex carbs will actually provide you with more long-term energy, and won't cause weight gain when consumed in moderation.

>> Related: Counting calories isn’t the key to weight loss, study finds 

Complex carbs actually provide significant benefits

Carbs may actually have a significant impact on our mental well-being. A 2009 study actually found that people on low-carb, high-fat diets actually were more likely to have depression, anxiety and anger than people on a low-fat, high-carb diet.

Additionally, carbs appear to be important for improving memory. Researchers at Tufts University had a group of overweight women cut carbs entirely from their diet for one week back in 2008. They then tested the women's cognitive skills, spatial memory and visual attention. The women performed worse than a group of other women who had simply reduced their carb intake by a healthy amount.

>> Related: What's the best way to lose weight with minimal effort?

To cut or not to cut carbs?

If you're struggling to lose weight, complex carbohydrates are not the problem. You should, however, reduce your intake of simple carbs. Not only do these foods have little nutritional value, they are also often consumed as snacks between meals. One of the big reasons people trying to lose weight often struggle, is that they neglect to cut snacking from their diets.

"People frequently forget about the little things during or between meals that add up calorically and can interfere significantly with weight loss," Dr. Melina Jampolis, a board-certified physician nutrition specialist, wrote for CNN.

Healthy, complex carbs can actually be the key to your weight loss. A 2009 study found that individuals who consumed more fiber, something complex carbs are rich with, lost significant amounts of weight. On the other hand, those who cut fiber from their diet actually gained.

>> Related: Want to lose more weight? Ditch your diet for a couple of weeks, study suggests

A balanced diet is the key

A recent study conducted by researchers at Stanford University revealed eating more vegetables along with other whole foods is the key to a healthy diet. The research further suggested that losing weight is more about diet quality than calorie quantity.

According to the research, dieting individuals who reduced their consumption of added sugars, highly processed foods and refined grains (simple carbs) while focusing on increasing their vegetables and whole foods, lost significant amounts of weight over the course of a year without limiting the size of portions.

The bottom line? Just like your overall food choices, the science says the quality of the carbs you consume is what matters most.

Disneyland tradition runs through generations for one family

There are the families who go to the Disney’s theme parks every year and do all things Disney; then there are the Disney families who make Mickey Mouse’s parks their entire lives.

Kaiden and Mikayla Gerlach are part of the second type of Disney families. They are the latest in a long line of family members who have all answered their calling to work for Disneyland, KABC reported. They’re actually among the 19 members of their family, over four generations, who have worked for Mickey Mouse.

>> Read more trending news 

It all started with Verral Elmer, their great-grandmother. who started working at Disneyland just after it opened in 1955.

She retired after working there for 28 years, KABC reported

Elmer’s daughter Lynne Elmer worked there, too, starting in 1958, and even got to see Walt Disney having breakfast with his grandchildren. 

One of Lynne’s children also worked at the theme park, as did Bill and Sandy Cushing, who met at the park and got married a few years later, KABC reported.

“One of those things that we always had to tell people was that this is the happiest place on earth and we really believe that, and we thought it was and we know it is,” Doug Elmer told KABC

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