PAKET UMROH BULAN FEBRUARI MARET APRIL MEI 2018




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Saco-Indonesia.com - Setelah melakukan sosialisasi pemenangan pemilu, Aria Tabing (35), calon legislatif (caleg) DPRD Kabupaten Ogan Komering Ulu Timur (OKUT), Sumatera Selatan dari PKS, diciduk unit Reskrim Polsek Semendawai Suku III, OKUT.

Penangkapan terhadap warga Desa Melua Indah, Kecamatan Cempaka, OKUT itu, bukan disebabkan melakukan pelanggaran pemilu, melainkan tertangkap tangkap membawa senjata api (senpi) jenis FN kaliber 99,9 mm dan kunci T yang disimpan di dalam jok sepeda motornya saat polisi menggelar patroli di kawasan Desa Bungun Jaya, Kecamatan Semendawai Timur, OKUT, Selasa (11/3), sekitar pukul 10 malam.

Saat itu, pelaku beserta dua rekannya baru pulang dari sosialisasi di desa sekitar dengan mengendarai sepeda motor Suzuki Thunder tanpa nomor polisi. Merasa curiga, petugas langsung mencegat pelaku dan mendapati barang bukti saat diperiksa.

"Pengakuan mereka baru pulang dari sosialisasi ke rumah-rumah warga. Karena pelaku seorang caleg," ungkap Kasat Reskrim OKUT AKP Janton Silaban, Kamis (13/3).

Saat ini, pelaku masih dalam proses pemeriksaan lebih lanjut untuk mengetahui alasan membawa senpi dan kunci T tersebut. "Kami sudah amankan pelaku untuk pemeriksaan lebih lanjut," kata dia.

Sementara itu, Ketua DPW PKS Sumatera Selatan Imam Mansyur saat dikonfirmasi enggan berkomentar. "Saya belum menerima laporan itu. Jadi maaf saya saya belum bisa berkomentar," tukasnya.

 

Sumber : Merdeka.com

Editor : Maulana Lee

Setelah melakukan sosialisasi, caleg PKS ditangkap bawa senpi dan kunci T

Gede Pasek Suardika telah merasa yakin kursinya di senayan aman hingga masa jabatannya berakhir. Keyakinan itu karena Ketua Umum DPP Partai Demokrat Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono masih sayang terhadap dirinya.

Kendati Ketua Harian Demokrat Syarif Hasan juga telah mengajukan surat pencopotan Pasek dari keanggotaan DPR dan partai, namun sampai saat ini posisi politisi asal Bali itu masih aman bercokol di Senayan.

Dia juga menilai, surat pemecatan dan pemanggilan yang diajukan Syarif dinilai janggal sehingga oleh pimpinan DPR hal itu ditolak.

“Kok saya yang dipecat, sementara dia yang jelas-jelas terlibat kasus videotroon dibiarkan,“ ujar Pasek , Selasa (18/3/2014).

Karenanya, alasan pemecatan yang dinilai aneh dan tidak sesuai mekanisme telah membuat pimpinan DPR menolak dan SBY juga tidak meneken surat persetujuan pemecatan.

“Ketum (SBY), masih sayang saya, nyatanya sampai sekarang beliau tidak mau menandatangani surat pemecatan,“ imbuh Pasek yang kini maju sebagai calon Dewan Perwakilan Daerah DPD itu.

Bagi Pasek, SBY telah menjadi guru politiknya selama ini dan dia tidak ada keinginan untuk keluar dari partai berlambang bintang mercy itu.

Meski demikian, Pasek tetap memandang jika nantinya dia benar-benar dipecat maka tidak dianggapnya sebagai musibah, malah menjadi berkah.

"Sekarang saya main di pinggiran, main seperti makan bubur justru lebih nikmat, ya dinikmati saja," imbuh Sekjend Perhimpunan Pergerakan Indonesia (PPI) itu.

Pasek Yakin Posisinya Aman di DPR hingga Akhir Periode

saco-indonesia.com, Tersangka dalam kasus suap Pemilukada Lebak, Ratu Atut Chosiyah telah kembali menyambangi Gedung KPK untuk dapat menjalani pemeriksaan. Atut datang bersama tersangka dalam suap pengurusan impor daging sapi di Kementerian Pertanian, Maria Elizabeth Liman.

Setibanya di KPK, Atut yang berpakaian serba hitam ini juga tak mau berkomentar apapun. Dia datang dengan mengenakan batik celana, jilbab, dan sepatu kets New Balance MR085 warna hitam. Ini adalah kali kedua Atut telah diperiksa sebagai tersangka.

Atut sendiri nampak segar. Wajah Atut telah menunjukkan kesiapannya untuk dapat diperiksa KPK dan tak nampak tertekan.

Bidikan kamera yang lebih menyorot Atut, dimanfaatkan Maria yang berjalan di belakang Atut untuk dapat menghindari pertanyaan wartawan. Dia langsung melenggang masuk ke ruang penyidikan.


Editor : Dian Sukmawati

ATUT SAMBANGI GEDUNG KPK

Oleh
Kumpulan Ulama

Saudara yang budiman.
Dalam melakukan ibadah haji terdapat tiga cara, yaitu : TAMATTU', QIRAN dan IFRAD.

Haji Tammatu' ialah berihram untuk umrah pada bulan-bulan haji (Syawal, Dzul Qa'dah dan sepuluh hari pertama bulan Dzul Hijjah), dan diselesaikan umrahnya pada waktu-waktu itu. Kemudian berihram untuk haji dari Mekkah atau sekitarnya pada hari Tarwiyah (tgl 8 Dzul Hijjah) pada tahun umrahnya tersebut.

Haji Qiran ialah, berihram untuk umrah dan haji sekaligus, dan terus berihram (tidak Tahallul) kecuali pada hari nahr (tgl 10 Dzul Hijjah). Atau berihram untuk umrah terlebih dahulu, kemudian sebelum melakukan tawaf umrah memasukkan niat haji.

Haji Ifrad ialah, berihram untuk haji dari miqat, atau dari Mekkah bagi penduduk Mekkah, atau dari tempat lain di daerah miqat bagi yang tinggal disitu, kemudian tetap dalam keadaan ihramnya sampai hari nahr apabila ia membawa binatang kurban. Jika tidak membawanya maka dianjurkannya untuk membatalkan niat hajinya dan menggantinya dengan umrah, selanjutnya melakukan tawaf, sa'i, mencukur rambut dan bertahallul, sebagaiman perintah Rasul Shallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam terhadap orang-orang yang berihram haji tetapi tidak membawa binatang kurban. Begitu pula bagi yang melakukan haji Qiran, apabila ia tidak membawa binatang kurban, dianjurkannya untuk membatalkan niat Qiran-nya itu, dan menggantinya menjadi Umrah, sebagaimana yang tersebut diatas.

Ibadah haji yang lebih utama ialah Haji Tamattu' bagi yang tidak membawa binatang kurban, oleh karena Rasulullah Shallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam memerintahkan hal itu dan menekankannya kepada para sahabatnya.

CARA MELAKUKAN UMRAH

Pertama.
Apabila anda telah sampai di miqat, maka mandilah dan pakailah wangi-wangian jika hal itu memungkinkan, kemudian kenakanlah pakaian ihram (sarung dan selendang). Dan lebih utama apabila berwarna putih.

Bagi wanita boleh mengenakan pakaian yang ia sukai, asal tidak menampakkan perhiasan. Kemudian berniat ihram untuk umrah seraya mengucapkan :

"Labbaika 'umratan, Labbaika allahuma labbaika, labbaika laa syariikalaka labbaika, innal hamda wan ni'mata laka wal mulka laa syariika laka".

"Artinya : Ku sambut panggilan-Mu untuk melaksanakan Umrah. Ku sambut panggilan-Mu ya Ilahi, Ku sambut panggilan-Mu, Ku sambut pangggilan-Mu, tiada sekutu bagi-Mu, Ku sambut panggilan-Mu. Sesungguhnya segala puji, ni'mat dan kerajaan adalah milk-Mu, tiada sekutu bagi-Mu"

Bagi kaum pria hendaknya mengucapkan talbiyah ini dengan suara keras, sedangkan bagi wanita hendaknya mengucapkan dengan suara pelan.

Kemudian perbanyaklah membaca talbiyah. dzikir dan istighfar serta menganjurkan berbuat baik dan mencegah kemungkaran.

Kedua.
Apabila anda telah sampai Mekkah. Maka lakukanlah Tawaf di Ka'bah sebanyak tujuh kali putaran, anda mulai dari Hajar Aswad sambil bertakbir dan anda sudahi di Hajar Aswad itu pula. Dan bacalah dzikir serta do'a yang anda kehendaki, dan sebaiknya anda sudahi setiap putaran dengan bacaan.

"Rabbanaa aatinaa fiid dunyaa hasanah, wa fil akhirati hasanah, wa qinaa 'adzaa baannari"

"Artinya : Wahai Tuhan kami, berilah kami kebaikan di dunia dan kebaikan di akhirat, dan lindungilah kami dari siksaan api neraka".

Kemudian setelah Tawaf, lakukan shalat dua raka'at di belakang makam Ibrahim walaupun agak jauh dari tempat tersebut jika hal itu mungkin. Dan jika tidak, maka lakukanlah di tempat lain di dalam Masjid.

Ketiga.
Kemudian keluarlah menuju Safa dan naiklah ke atasnya sambil menghadap Ka'bah, bacalah tahmid serta takbir tiga kali sambil mengangkat kedua tangan, dan bacalah do'a serta ulangilah setiap do'a tiga kali sesuai dengan sunnah Rasulullah Shallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam, dan ucapkanlah :

"La ilaha illallah wahdahu laa syariikalahu, lahul mulku walahul hamdu wa huwa 'alaa kulli syain qadiir, la ilaha illallah wahdahu anjaza wa'dah, wa nashara 'abdah wahazamal ahzaaba wahdah"

"Artinya : Tiada Tuhan yang patut di sembah selain Allah yang Maha Esa, tiada sekutu bagi-Nya, hanya bagi-Nya segala kerajaan, dan hanya bagi-Nya segala puji, dan Dia Maha Kuasa atas segala sesuatu. Tiada Tuhan yang patut disembah selain Allah yang Esa, yang menepati janji-Nya, dan memenangkan hamba-Nya serta telah menghancurkan golongan kafir, dengan tanpa dibantu siapapun".

Ucapkanlah bacaan tersebut tiga kali, dan tak mengapa apabila anda baca kurang dari bilangan itu.

Kemudian turunlah dan lakukanlah Sa'i Umrah sebanyak tujuh kali putaran dengan berjalan cepat diantara tanda hijau, dan berjalan biasa sebelum dan sesudah tanda tersebut, kemudian naiklah anda ke atas Marwah, dan bacalah tahmid dan takbir tiga kali apabila mungkin, sebagaimana yang anda lakukan di Safa.

Dalam Tawaf atau Sa'i, tidak ada bacaan dzikir wajib yang khsusus untuk itu. Akan tetapi dibolehkan bagi yang melakukan Tawaf atau Sa'i untuk membaca dzikir dan do'a atau bacaan Al-Qur'an yang mudah baginya, dengan mengutamakan bacaan-bacaan dzikir dan do'a yang bersumber dari tuntunan Rasul Shallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam.

Keempat.
Bila anda telah selesai melakukan Sa'i, maka cukurlah dengan bersih atau pendekkan rambut kepala anda. Dengan demikian selesailah Umrah anda dan selanjutnya anda diperbolehkan melakukan hal hal yang tadinya menjadi larangan.

Apabila anda melakukan haji Tamattu', maka wajib bagi anda menyembelih kurban pada hari Nahr, yaitu seekor kambing atau sepertujuh onta/sapi, jika anda tidak mendapatkannya, maka anda wajib melakukan puasa sepuluh hari ; tiga hari diwaktu haji, dan tujuh hari setelah anda pulang ke keluarga anda.

Dan lebih utama, anda lakukan puasa tiga hari itu sebelum hari Arafah, jika anda melakukan haji Tamattu' atau Qiran.

Cara Melakukan Haji

Pertama
Jika anda melakukan haji Ifrad atau Qiran, hendaklah anda berihram dari miqat yang anda lalui.

Dan jika anda tinggal di daerah miqat, maka berihramlah menurut niat anda dari tempat tersebut.

Dan jika anda melakukan haji Tammattu', maka berihramlah dari tempat tinggal anda hari Tarwiyah, yaitu pada tanggal 8 Dzul Hijjah. Mandilah dan pakailah wangi-wangian lebih dahulu sekiranya hal itu memungkinkan, kemudian kenakanlah pakaian ihram, lalu berniatlah dengan membaca :
"Labbaika hajan, Labbaika allahumma labbaika, Labbaika laa syarikalaka labbaika, innalhamda wani'mata laka walmulka, laa syarikalaka".

"Artinya : Ku sambut panggilan-Mu untuk menunaikan haji, Ku sambut panggilan-Mu ya Illahi, Ku sambut panggilan-Mu. Ku sambut panggilan-Mu, Kau yang tiada sekutu bagi-Mu, Ku sambut panggilan-Mu. Sesungguhnya segala puji, ni'mat dan kerajaan milik-Mu, tiada sekutu bagi-Mu".

Kedua
Kemudian keluarlah menuju Mina, lakukanlah shalat Zhuhur, Asar, Maghrib, Isya' dan Subuh disana, dengan cara mengqashar shalat yang empat raka'at (Zhuhur, Asar dan Isya') menjadi dua raka'at pada waktunya masing-masing, tanpa jama'.

Ketiga
Apabila matahari telah terbit pada hari kesembilan Dzul Hijjah (esoknya), maka berangkatlah anda menuju Arafah dengan tanpa tergesa-gesa, dan hindarilah jangan sampai mengganggu sesama jama'ah haji. Dan di Arafah lakukan shalat Zhuhur dan Asar dengan jama' Taqdim dan Qashar, dengan satu kali adzan dan dua kali iqamat.

Tentang wukuf ini, anda harus yakin bahwa anda benar-benar telah berada di dalam batas Arafah (bukan di luarnya). Dan perbanyaklah disini dzikir dan do'a, sambil menghadap kiblat dan mengangkat kedua tangan, mencontoh apa yang dilakukan Rasulullah Shallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam. Padang Arafah seluruhnya merupakan tempat wukuf, dan hendaklah anda tetap berada disana hingga terbenam matahari.

Keempat.
Apabila matahari telah terbenam, berangkatlah menuju Muzdalifah dengan tenang sambil membaca talbiyah, dan hindarilah jangan sampai mengganggu sesama muslim. Sesampainya anda di Muzdalifah, lakukanlah shalat Maghrib dan Isya' dengan jama' dan qasar. Dan hendaklah anda menetap disana hingga anda melakukan shalat Subuh. Setelah selesai shalat Subuh perbanyaklah do'a dan dzikir hingga hari tampak mulai terang, sambil menghadap kiblat dan mengangkat kedua tangan mengikuti tuntunan Rasulullah Shallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam.

Kelima.
Kemudian berangkatlah sebelum matahari terbit menuju Mina sambil membaca talbiyah. Bagi yang berudzur, seperti wanita dan orang-orang yang lemah, boleh berangkat menuju Mina pada malam itu juga setelah lewat pertengahan malam. Dan pungutlah di Mudzalifah batu-batu kecil sebanyak tujuh biji saja untuk melempar Jamrah Aqabah, adapun yang lain cukup anda pungut dari Mina. Demikian juga tujuh batu yang akan anda pergunakan untuk melempar Jamrah Aqabah pada hari raya, tak mengapa bagi anda untuk memungutnya dari Mina.

Keenam.
Apabila anda telah tiba di Mina, lakukanlah hal-hal dibawah ini :
Lemparlah Jamrah Aqabah, yaitu Jamrah yang terdekat dari Mekkah, dengan tujuh batu kecil secara berturut-turut sambil bertakbir pada setiap kali lemparan.

Sembelihlah kurban jika anda berkewajiban melakukannya, dan makanlah sebagian dagingnya, serta berikan sebagian besarnya kepada orang-orang fakir.

Bercukurlah dengan bersih atau pendekkan rambut anda, akan tetapi lebih utama bagi anda adalah mencukur bersih. Sedang bagi wanita cukup menggunting ujung rambutnya kira-kira sepanjang ujung jari.

Lebih utama jika ketiga perkara ini dilakukan secara tertib. Namun tak mengapa bagi anda jika anda dahulukan yang satu atas yang lain.

Apabila anda telah selesai melempar dan mencukur, berarti anda telah melaksanakan Tahallul Awal. Dan selanjutnya anda boleh mengenakan pakaian biasa dan melakukan hal-hal yang tadinya menjadi larangan ihram, kecuali berhubungan dengan istri.

Ketujuh
Kemudian berangkatlah menuju Mekkah dan lakukanlah Tawaf Ifadah setelah itu lakukanlah Sa'i jika anda melakukan haji Tamattu', ataupun anda melakukan haji Qiran atau Ifrad, akan tetapi anda belum melakukan Sa'i setelah Tawaf Qudum. Dengan demikian anda diperbolehkan mengadakan hubungan dengan isteri.

Tawaf Ifadah ini boleh diakhirkan melakukannya setelah lewat hari-hari Mina, dan menuju Mekkah setelah melempar seluruh Jamrah.

Kedelapan
Setelah Tawaf Ifadah pada hari Nahr, kembalilah ke Mina. Bermalamlah di sana pada malam hari Tasyriq, yaitu tanggal 11, 12, dan 13, dan tidak mengapa jika anda bermalam hanya dua malam saja.

Kesembilan
Lemparlah ketiga Jamrah selama anda menetap dua atau tiga hari di Mina, setelah matahari tergelincir ; anda mulai dari Jamrah Ula, yaitu yang terjauh jaraknya dari Mekkah, kemudian Jamrah Wusta (tengah), dan selanjutnya Jamrah Aqabah, setiap Jamrah dengan tujuh batu kecil secara berturut-turut sambil bertakbir pada setiap kali lemparan.

Jika anda menghendaki untuk menetap selama dua hari saja, hendaklah anda meninggalkan Mina sebelum matahari terbenam di hari kedua itu. Dan jika ternyata matahari telah terbenam sebelum anda keluar dari batas Mina, maka hendaklah anda bermalam lagi pada malam hari ketiganya, dan melempar ketiga Jamrah di hari ketiga itu. Dan yang lebih utama hendaknya anda bermalam pada malam ketiga tersebut.

Bagi yang sakit atau yang lemah, boleh mewakilkan kepada orang lain untuk melempar Jamrah. Dan bagi yang mewakili boleh melempar untuk dirinya sendiri terlebih dahulu, kemudian untuk yang diwakilinya pada satu tempat Jamrah.

Kesepuluh
Apabila anda hendak kembali ke kampung setelah menyelesaikan segala amalan haji, lakukanlah Tawaf Wada'. Dan tiada kemurahan untuk meninggalkan Tawaf Wada' ini, kecuali bagi wanita yang sedang datang bulan (haidh) dan yang baru melahirkan (nifas).

[Disalin dari buku Petunjuk Jamaah Haji dan Umrah serta Penziarah Masjid Rasul Shallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam, pengarang Kumpulan Ulama, hal 14-19, diterbitkan dan diedarkan oleh Departemen Agama, Waqaf, Daawah dan Bimbingan Islam, Saudi Arabia]

Sumber : http://www.alquran-sunnah.com

Baca Artikel Lainnya : HIKMAH DARI IBADAH HAJI ATAU RUKUN ISLAM YANG KE LIMA

MELAKSANAKAN HAJI UMRAH, KEWAJIBAN YANG BERIHRAM DAN ZIARAH KE MASJID RASUL

saco-indonesia.com, Kader Partai Demokrat, I Gede Pasek Suardika, telah meminta Ketua Harian PD, Syarief Hasan, berkonsentrasi untuk mengurus kasus hukum yang telah membelit anaknya, Rivan, di kasus pengadaan videotron di Kementerian Koperasi dan UKM. Pasek juga menyarankan Syarief Hasan mundur dari jabatan Ketua Harian Partai Demokrat.

"Lebih baik dengan kesadarannya mundur, dan fokus pada masalah yang telah dihadapi. Kalau dulu Mas Anas kan disuruh konsen untuk mengurus masalah hukum, Pak Syarif juga harus konsen ngurus masalah, kaya Videotron," kata Pasek sebelum membesuk mantan Ketua Umum PD, Anas Urbaningrum, di KPK, Jakarta Selatan, Senin (3/2/2014).

Menurut Gede Pasek, Syarif Hasan juga tidak mampu untuk menaikkan tingkat elektabilitas Partai Demokrat. "Saya kira kabinet PD perlu reformasi, karena harus diakui, kinerja kabinet PD tidak menunjang elektabilitas partai. Saya kira masih ada waktu pembenahan," ujar dia menambahkan.

Gede Pasek juga menambahkan Syarief Hasan tergolong menteri yang banyak masalah. Selain di kasus Kementerian UKM, kata Pasek, Syarief juga ada kasus di Kementerian ESDM. "Kalau dilihat dari kasusnya kan cukup banyak. Di Menko UKM ada, di ESDM ada," ungkap Gede Pasek.


Editor : Dian Sukmawati

HOME NEWS POLHUKAM SYARIEF HASAN DIMINTA URUS KASUS HUKUM YANG MEMBELIT ANAKNYA

BALTIMORE — In the afternoons, the streets of Locust Point are clean and nearly silent. In front of the rowhouses, potted plants rest next to steps of brick or concrete. There is a shopping center nearby with restaurants, and a grocery store filled with fresh foods.

And the National Guard and the police are largely absent. So, too, residents say, are worries about what happened a few miles away on April 27 when, in a space of hours, parts of this city became riot zones.

“They’re not our reality,” Ashley Fowler, 30, said on Monday at the restaurant where she works. “They’re not what we’re living right now. We live in, not to be racist, white America.”

As Baltimore considers its way forward after the violent unrest brought by the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who died of injuries he suffered while in police custody, residents in its predominantly white neighborhoods acknowledge that they are sometimes struggling to understand what beyond Mr. Gray’s death spurred the turmoil here. For many, the poverty and troubled schools of gritty West Baltimore are distant troubles, glimpsed only when they pass through the area on their way somewhere else.

Photo
 
Officers blocked traffic at Pennsylvania and West North Avenues after reports that a gun was discharged in the area. Credit Drew Angerer for The New York Times

And so neighborhoods of Baltimore are facing altogether different reckonings after Mr. Gray’s death. In mostly black communities like Sandtown-Winchester, where some of the most destructive rioting played out last week, residents are hoping businesses will reopen and that the police will change their strategies. But in mostly white areas like Canton and Locust Point, some residents wonder what role, if any, they should play in reimagining stretches of Baltimore where they do not live.

“Most of the people are kind of at a loss as to what they’re supposed to do,” said Dr. Richard Lamb, a dentist who has practiced in the same Locust Point office for nearly 39 years. “I listen to the news reports. I listen to the clergymen. I listen to the facts of the rampant unemployment and the lack of opportunities in the area. Listen, I pay my taxes. Exactly what can I do?”

And in Canton, where the restaurants have clever names like Nacho Mama’s and Holy Crepe Bakery and Café, Sara Bahr said solutions seemed out of reach for a proudly liberal city.

“I can only imagine how frustrated they must be,” said Ms. Bahr, 36, a nurse who was out with her 3-year-old daughter, Sally. “I just wish I knew how to solve poverty. I don’t know what to do to make it better.”

The day of unrest and the overwhelmingly peaceful demonstrations that followed led to hundreds of arrests, often for violations of the curfew imposed on the city for five consecutive nights while National Guard soldiers patrolled the streets. Although there were isolated instances of trouble in Canton, the neighborhood association said on its website, many parts of southeast Baltimore were physically untouched by the tumult.

Tensions in the city bubbled anew on Monday after reports that the police had wounded a black man in Northwest Baltimore. The authorities denied those reports and sent officers to talk with the crowds that gathered while other officers clutching shields blocked traffic at Pennsylvania and West North Avenues.

Lt. Col. Melvin Russell, a community police officer, said officers had stopped a man suspected of carrying a handgun and that “one of those rounds was spent.”

Colonel Russell said officers had not opened fire, “so we couldn’t have shot him.”

Photo
 
Lambi Vasilakopoulos, right, who runs a casual restaurant in Canton, said he was incensed by last week's looting and predicted tensions would worsen. Credit Drew Angerer for The New York Times

The colonel said the man had not been injured but was taken to a hospital as a precaution. Nearby, many people stood in disbelief, despite the efforts by the authorities to quash reports they described as “unfounded.”

Monday’s episode was a brief moment in a larger drama that has yielded anger and confusion. Although many people said they were familiar with accounts of the police harassing or intimidating residents, many in Canton and Locust Point said they had never experienced it themselves. When they watched the unrest, which many protesters said was fueled by feelings that they lived only on Baltimore’s margins, even those like Ms. Bahr who were pained by what they saw said they could scarcely comprehend the emotions associated with it.

But others, like Lambi Vasilakopoulos, who runs a casual restaurant in Canton, said they were incensed by what unfolded last week.

“What happened wasn’t called for. Protests are one thing; looting is another thing,” he said, adding, “We’re very frustrated because we’re the ones who are going to pay for this.”

There were pockets of optimism, though, that Baltimore would enter a period of reconciliation.

“I’m just hoping for peace,” Natalie Boies, 53, said in front of the Locust Point home where she has lived for 50 years. “Learn to love each other; be patient with each other; find justice; and care.”

A skeptical Mr. Vasilakopoulos predicted tensions would worsen.

“It cannot be fixed,” he said. “It’s going to get worse. Why? Because people don’t obey the laws. They don’t want to obey them.”

But there were few fears that the violence that plagued West Baltimore last week would play out on these relaxed streets. The authorities, Ms. Fowler said, would make sure of that.

“They kept us safe here,” she said. “I didn’t feel uncomfortable when I was in my house three blocks away from here. I knew I was going to be O.K. because I knew they weren’t going to let anyone come and loot our properties or our businesses or burn our cars.”

Baltimore Residents Away From Turmoil Consider Their Role

Ms. Turner and her twin sister founded the Love Kitchen in 1986 in a church basement in Knoxville, Tenn., and it continues to provide clothing and meals.

Ellen Turner Dies at 87; Opened Kitchen to Feed the Needy of Knoxville

Hockey is not exactly known as a city game, but played on roller skates, it once held sway as the sport of choice in many New York neighborhoods.

“City kids had no rinks, no ice, but they would do anything to play hockey,” said Edward Moffett, former director of the Long Island City Y.M.C.A. Roller Hockey League, in Queens, whose games were played in city playgrounds going back to the 1940s.

From the 1960s through the 1980s, the league had more than 60 teams, he said. Players included the Mullen brothers of Hell’s Kitchen and Dan Dorion of Astoria, Queens, who would later play on ice for the National Hockey League.

One street legend from the heyday of New York roller hockey was Craig Allen, who lived in the Woodside Houses projects and became one of the city’s hardest hitters and top scorers.

“Craig was a warrior, one of the best roller hockey players in the city in the ’70s,” said Dave Garmendia, 60, a retired New York police officer who grew up playing with Mr. Allen. “His teammates loved him and his opponents feared him.”

Young Craig took up hockey on the streets of Queens in the 1960s, playing pickup games between sewer covers, wearing steel-wheeled skates clamped onto school shoes and using a roll of electrical tape as the puck.

His skill and ferocity drew attention, Mr. Garmendia said, but so did his skin color. He was black, in a sport made up almost entirely by white players.

“Roller hockey was a white kid’s game, plain and simple, but Craig broke the color barrier,” Mr. Garmendia said. “We used to say Craig did more for race relations than the N.A.A.C.P.”

Mr. Allen went on to coach and referee roller hockey in New York before moving several years ago to South Carolina. But he continued to organize an annual alumni game at Dutch Kills Playground in Long Island City, the same site that held the local championship games.

The reunion this year was on Saturday, but Mr. Allen never made it. On April 26, just before boarding the bus to New York, he died of an asthma attack at age 61.

Word of his death spread rapidly among hundreds of his old hockey colleagues who resolved to continue with the event, now renamed the Craig Allen Memorial Roller Hockey Reunion.

The turnout on Saturday was the largest ever, with players pulling on their old equipment, choosing sides and taking once again to the rink of cracked blacktop with faded lines and circles. They wore no helmets, although one player wore a fedora.

Another, Vinnie Juliano, 77, of Long Island City, wore his hearing aids, along with his 50-year-old taped-up quads, or four-wheeled skates with a leather boot. Many players here never converted to in-line skates, and neither did Mr. Allen, whose photograph appeared on a poster hanging behind the players’ bench.

“I’m seeing people walking by wondering why all these rusty, grizzly old guys are here playing hockey,” one player, Tommy Dominguez, said. “We’re here for Craig, and let me tell you, these old guys still play hard.”

Everyone seemed to have a Craig Allen story, from his earliest teams at Public School 151 to the Bryant Rangers, the Woodside Wings, the Woodside Blues and more.

Mr. Allen, who became a yellow-cab driver, was always recruiting new talent. He gained the nickname Cabby for his habit of stopping at playgrounds all over the city to scout players.

Teams were organized around neighborhoods and churches, and often sponsored by local bars. Mr. Allen, for one, played for bars, including Garry Owen’s and on the Fiddler’s Green Jokers team in Inwood, Manhattan.

Play was tough and fights were frequent.

“We were basically street gangs on skates,” said Steve Rogg, 56, a mail clerk who grew up in Jackson Heights, Queens, and who on Saturday wore his Riedell Classic quads from 1972. “If another team caught up with you the night before a game, they tossed you a beating so you couldn’t play the next day.”

Mr. Garmendia said Mr. Allen’s skin color provoked many fights.

“When we’d go to some ignorant neighborhoods, a lot of players would use slurs,” Mr. Garmendia said, recalling a game in Ozone Park, Queens, where local fans parked motorcycles in a lineup next to the blacktop and taunted Mr. Allen. Mr. Garmendia said he checked a player into the motorcycles, “and the bikes went down like dominoes, which started a serious brawl.”

A group of fans at a game in Brooklyn once stuck a pole through the rink fence as Mr. Allen skated by and broke his jaw, Mr. Garmendia said, adding that carloads of reinforcements soon arrived to defend Mr. Allen.

And at another racially incited brawl, the police responded with six patrol cars and a helicopter.

Before play began on Saturday, the players gathered at center rink to honor Mr. Allen. Billy Barnwell, 59, of Woodside, recalled once how an all-white, all-star squad snubbed Mr. Allen by playing him third string. He scored seven goals in the first game and made first string immediately.

“He’d always hear racial stuff before the game, and I’d ask him, ‘How do you put up with that?’” Mr. Barnwell recalled. “Craig would say, ‘We’ll take care of it,’ and by the end of the game, he’d win guys over. They’d say, ‘This guy’s good.’”

Tribute for a Roller Hockey Warrior

BEIJING (AP) — The head of Taiwan's Nationalists reaffirmed the party's support for eventual unification with the mainland when he met Monday with Chinese President Xi Jinping as part of continuing rapprochement between the former bitter enemies.

Nationalist Party Chairman Eric Chu, a likely presidential candidate next year, also affirmed Taiwan's desire to join the proposed Chinese-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank during the meeting in Beijing. China claims Taiwan as its own territory and doesn't want the island to join using a name that might imply it is an independent country.

Chu's comments during his meeting with Xi were carried live on Hong Kong-based broadcaster Phoenix Television.

The Nationalists were driven to Taiwan by Mao Zedong's Communists during the Chinese civil war in 1949, leading to decades of hostility between the sides. Chu, who took over as party leader in January, is the third Nationalist chairman to visit the mainland and the first since 2009.

Relations between the communist-ruled mainland and the self-governing democratic island of Taiwan began to warm in the 1990s, partly out of their common opposition to Taiwan's formal independence from China, a position advocated by the island's Democratic Progressive Party.

Despite increasingly close economic ties, the prospect of political unification has grown increasingly unpopular on Taiwan, especially with younger voters. Opposition to the Nationalists' pro-China policies was seen as a driver behind heavy local electoral defeats for the party last year that led to Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou resigning as party chairman.

Taiwan party leader affirms eventual reunion with China

A 2-minute-42-second demo recording captured in one take turned out to be a one-hit wonder for Mr. Ely, who was 19 when he sang the garage-band classic.

Jack Ely, Who Sang the Kingsmen’s ‘Louie Louie’, Dies at 71

Over the last five years or so, it seemed there was little that Dean G. Skelos, the majority leader of the New York Senate, would not do for his son.

He pressed a powerful real estate executive to provide commissions to his son, a 32-year-old title insurance salesman, according to a federal criminal complaint. He helped get him a job at an environmental company and employed his influence to help the company get government work. He used his office to push natural gas drilling regulations that would have increased his son’s commissions.

He even tried to direct part of a $5.4 billion state budget windfall to fund government contracts that the company was seeking. And when the company was close to securing a storm-water contract from Nassau County, the senator, through an intermediary, pressured the company to pay his son more — or risk having the senator subvert the bid.

The criminal complaint, unsealed on Monday, lays out corruption charges against Senator Skelos and his son, Adam B. Skelos, the latest scandal to seize Albany, and potentially alter its power structure.

Photo
 
Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan, discussed the case involving Dean G. Skelos and his son, Adam. Credit Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

The repeated and diverse efforts by Senator Skelos, a Long Island Republican, to use what prosecutors said was his political influence to find work, or at least income, for his son could send both men to federal prison. If they are convicted of all six charges against them, they face up to 20 years in prison for each of four of the six counts and up to 10 years for the remaining two.

Senator Kenneth P. LaValle, of Long Island, who serves as chairman of the Republican conference, emerged from a closed-door meeting Monday night to say that conference members agreed that Mr. Skelos should be benefited the “presumption of innocence,” and would stay in his leadership role.

“The leader has indicated he would like to remain as leader,” said Mr. LaValle, “and he has the support of the conference.” The case against Mr. Skelos and his son grew out of a broader inquiry into political corruption by the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, that has already changed the face of the state capital. It is based in part, according to the six-count complaint, on conversations secretly recorded by one of two cooperating witnesses, and wiretaps on the cellphones of the senator and his son. Those recordings revealed that both men were concerned about electronic surveillance, and illustrated the son’s unsuccessful efforts to thwart it.

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Adam Skelos took to using a “burner” phone, the complaint says, and told his father he wanted them to speak through a FaceTime video call in an apparent effort to avoid detection. They also used coded language at times.

At one point, Adam Skelos was recorded telling a Senate staff member of his frustration in not being able to speak openly to his father on the phone, noting that he could not “just send smoke signals or a little pigeon” carrying a message.

The 43-page complaint, sworn out by Paul M. Takla, a special agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, outlines a five-year scheme to “monetize” the senator’s official position; it also lays bare the extent to which a father sought to use his position to help his son.

The charges accuse the two men of extorting payments through a real estate developer, Glenwood Management, based on Long Island, and the environmental company, AbTech Industries, in Scottsdale, Ariz., with the expectation that the money paid to Adam Skelos — nearly $220,000 in total — would influence his father’s actions.

Glenwood, one of the state’s most prolific campaign donors, had ties to AbTech through investments in the environmental firm’s parent company by Glenwood’s founding family and a senior executive.

The accusations in the complaint portray Senator Skelos as a man who, when it came to his son, was not shy about twisting arms, even in situations that might give other arm-twisters pause.

Seeking to help his son, Senator Skelos turned to the executive at Glenwood, which develops rental apartments in New York City and has much at stake when it comes to real estate legislation in Albany. The senator urged him to direct business to his son, who sold title insurance.

After much prodding, the executive, Charles C. Dorego, engineered a $20,000 payment to Adam Skelos from a title insurance company even though he did no work for the money. But far more lucrative was a consultant position that Mr. Dorego arranged for Adam Skelos at AbTech, which seeks government contracts to treat storm water. (Mr. Dorego is not identified by name in the complaint, but referred to only as CW-1, for Cooperating Witness 1.)

Senator Skelos appeared to take an active interest in his son’s new line of work. Adam Skelos sent him several drafts of his consulting agreement with AbTech, the complaint says, as well as the final deal that was struck.

“Mazel tov,” his father replied.

Senator Skelos sent relevant news articles to his son, including one about a sewage leak near Albany. When AbTech wanted to seek government contracts after Hurricane Sandy, the senator got on a conference call with his son and an AbTech executive, Bjornulf White, and offered advice. (Like Mr. Dorego, Mr. White is not named in the complaint, but referred to as CW-2.)

The assistance paid off: With the senator’s help, AbTech secured a contract worth up to $12 million from Nassau County, a big break for a struggling small business.

But the money was slow to materialize. The senator expressed impatience with county officials.

Adam Skelos, in a phone call with Mr. White in late December, suggested that his father would seek to punish the county. “I tell you this, the state is not going to do a [expletive] thing for the county,” he said.

Three days later, Senator Skelos pressed his case with the Nassau County executive, Edward P. Mangano, a fellow Republican. “Somebody feels like they’re just getting jerked around the last two years,” the senator said, referring to his son in what the complaint described as “coded language.”

The next day, the senator pursued the matter, as he and Mr. Mangano attended a wake for a slain New York City police officer. Senator Skelos then reassured his son, who called him while he was still at the wake. “All claims that are in will be taken care of,” the senator said.

AbTech’s fortunes appeared to weigh on his son. At one point in January, Adam Skelos told his father that if the company did not succeed, he would “lose the ability to pay for things.”

Making matters worse, in recent months, Senator Skelos and his son appeared to grow wary about who was watching them. In addition to making calls on the burner phone, Adam Skelos said he used the FaceTime video calling “because that doesn’t show up on the phone bill,” as he told Mr. White.

In late February, Adam Skelos arranged a pair of meetings between Mr. White and state senators; AbTech needed to win state legislation that would allow its contract to move beyond its initial stages. But Senator Skelos deemed the plan too risky and caused one of the meetings to be canceled.

In another recorded call, Adam Skelos, promising to be “very, very vague” on the phone, urged his father to allow the meeting. The senator offered a warning. “Right now we are in dangerous times, Adam,” he told him.

A month later, in another phone call that was recorded by the authorities, Adam Skelos complained that his father could not give him “real advice” about AbTech while the two men were speaking over the telephone.

“You can’t talk normally,” he told his father, “because it’s like [expletive] Preet Bharara is listening to every [expletive] phone call. It’s just [expletive] frustrating.”

“It is,” his father agreed.

Dean Skelos, Albany Senate Leader, Aided Son at All Costs, U.S. Says

As governor, Mr. Walker alienated Republicans and his fellow Democrats, particularly the Democratic powerhouse Richard J. Daley, the mayor of Chicago.

Dan Walker, 92, Dies; Illinois Governor and Later a U.S. Prisoner

Ms. Rendell was a prolific writer of intricately plotted mystery novels that combined psychological insight, social conscience and teeth-chattering terror.

Ruth Rendell, Novelist Who Thrilled and Educated, Dies at 85

With 12 tournament victories in his career, Mr. Peete was the most successful black professional golfer before Tiger Woods.

Calvin Peete, 71, a Racial Pioneer on the PGA Tour, Is Dead

Mr. Haroche was a founder of Liberty Travel, which grew from a two-man operation to the largest leisure travel operation in the United States.

Gilbert Haroche, Builder of an Economy Travel Empire, Dies at 87

WASHINGTON — A decade after emergency trailers meant to shelter Hurricane Katrina victims instead caused burning eyes, sore throats and other more serious ailments, the Environmental Protection Agency is on the verge of regulating the culprit: formaldehyde, a chemical that can be found in commonplace things like clothes and furniture.

But an unusual assortment of players, including furniture makers, the Chinese government, Republicans from states with a large base of furniture manufacturing and even some Democrats who championed early regulatory efforts, have questioned the E.P.A. proposal. The sustained opposition has held sway, as the agency is now preparing to ease key testing requirements before it releases the landmark federal health standard.

The E.P.A.’s five-year effort to adopt this rule offers another example of how industry opposition can delay and hamper attempts by the federal government to issue regulations, even to control substances known to be harmful to human health.

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Document: The Formaldehyde Fight

Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen that can also cause respiratory ailments like asthma, but the potential of long-term exposure to cause cancers like myeloid leukemia is less well understood.

The E.P.A.’s decision would be the first time that the federal government has regulated formaldehyde inside most American homes.

“The stakes are high for public health,” said Tom Neltner, senior adviser for regulatory affairs at the National Center for Healthy Housing, who has closely monitored the debate over the rules. “What we can’t have here is an outcome that fails to confront the health threat we all know exists.”

The proposal would not ban formaldehyde — commonly used as an ingredient in wood glue in furniture and flooring — but it would impose rules that prevent dangerous levels of the chemical’s vapors from those products, and would set testing standards to ensure that products sold in the United States comply with those limits. The debate has sharpened in the face of growing concern about the safety of formaldehyde-treated flooring imported from Asia, especially China.

What is certain is that a lot of money is at stake: American companies sell billions of dollars’ worth of wood products each year that contain formaldehyde, and some argue that the proposed regulation would impose unfair costs and restrictions.

Determined to block the agency’s rule as proposed, these industry players have turned to the White House, members of Congress and top E.P.A. officials, pressing them to roll back the testing requirements in particular, calling them redundant and too expensive.

“There are potentially over a million manufacturing jobs that will be impacted if the proposed rule is finalized without changes,” wrote Bill Perdue, the chief lobbyist at the American Home Furnishings Alliance, a leading critic of the testing requirements in the proposed regulation, in one letter to the E.P.A.

Industry opposition helped create an odd alignment of forces working to thwart the rule. The White House moved to strike out key aspects of the proposal. Subsequent appeals for more changes were voiced by players as varied as Senator Barbara Boxer, Democrat of California, and Senator Roger Wicker, Republican of Mississippi, as well as furniture industry lobbyists.

Hurricane Katrina in 2005 helped ignite the public debate over formaldehyde, after the deadly storm destroyed or damaged hundreds of thousands of homes along the Gulf of Mexico, forcing families into temporary trailers provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The displaced storm victims quickly began reporting respiratory problems, burning eyes and other issues, and tests then confirmed high levels of formaldehyde fumes leaking into the air inside the trailers, which in many cases had been hastily constructed.

Public health advocates petitioned the E.P.A. to issue limits on formaldehyde in building materials and furniture used in homes, given that limits already existed for exposure in workplaces. But three years after the storm, only California had issued such limits.

Industry groups like the American Chemistry Council have repeatedly challenged the science linking formaldehyde to cancer, a position championed by David Vitter, the Republican senator from Louisiana, who is a major recipient of chemical industry campaign contributions, and whom environmental groups have mockingly nicknamed “Senator Formaldehyde.”

Continue reading the main story

Formaldehyde in Laminate Flooring

In laminate flooring, formaldehyde is used as a bonding agent in the fiberboard (or other composite wood) core layer and may also be used in glues that bind layers together. Concerns were raised in March when certain laminate flooring imported from China was reported to contain levels of formaldehyde far exceeding the limit permitted by California.

Typical

laminate

flooring

CLEAR FINISH LAYER

Often made of melamine resin

PATTERN LAYER

Paper printed to resemble wood,

or a thin wood veneer

GLUE

Layers may be bound using

formaldehyde-based glues

CORE LAYER

Fiberboard or other

composite, formed using

formaldehyde-based adhesives

BASE LAYER

Moisture-resistant vapor barrier

What is formaldehyde?

Formaldehyde is a common chemical used in many industrial and household products as an adhesive, bonding agent or preservative. It is classified as a volatile organic compound. The term volatile means that, at room temperature, formaldehyde will vaporize, or become a gas. Products made with formaldehyde tend to release this gas into the air. If breathed in large quantities, it may cause health problems.

WHERE IT IS COMMONLY FOUND

POTENTIAL HEALTH RISKS

Pressed-wood and composite wood products

Wallpaper and paints

Spray foam insulation used in construction

Commercial wood floor finishes

Crease-resistant fabrics

In cigarette smoke, or in the fumes from combustion of other materials, including wood, oil and gasoline.

Exposure to formaldehyde in sufficient amounts may cause eye, throat or skin irritation, allergic reactions, and respiratory problems like coughing, wheezing or asthma.

Long-term exposure to high levels has been associated with cancer in humans and laboratory animals.

Exposure to formaldehyde may affect some people more severely than others.

By 2010, public health advocates and some industry groups secured bipartisan support in Congress for legislation that ordered the E.P.A. to issue federal rules that largely mirrored California’s restrictions. At the time, concerns were rising over the growing number of lower-priced furniture imports from Asia that might include contaminated products, while also hurting sales of American-made products.

Maneuvering began almost immediately after the E.P.A. prepared draft rules to formally enact the new standards.

White House records show at least five meetings in mid-2012 with industry executives — kitchen cabinet makers, chemical manufacturers, furniture trade associations and their lobbyists, like Brock R. Landry, of the Venable law firm. These parties, along with Senator Vitter’s office, appealed to top administration officials, asking them to intervene to roll back the E.P.A. proposal.

The White House Office of Management and Budget, which reviews major federal regulations before they are adopted, apparently agreed. After the White House review, the E.P.A. “redlined” many of the estimates of the monetary benefits that would be gained by reductions in related health ailments, like asthma and fertility issues, documents reviewed by The New York Times show.

As a result, the estimated benefit of the proposed rule dropped to $48 million a year, from as much as $278 million a year. The much-reduced amount deeply weakened the agency’s justification for the sometimes costly new testing that would be required under the new rules, a federal official involved in the effort said.

“It’s a redlining blood bath,” said Lisa Heinzerling, a Georgetown University Law School professor and a former E.P.A. official, using the Washington phrase to describe when language is stricken from a proposed rule. “Almost the entire discussion of these potential benefits was excised.”

Senator Vitter’s staff was pleased.

“That’s a huge difference,” said Luke Bolar, a spokesman for Mr. Vitter, of the reduced estimated financial benefits, saying the change was “clearly highlighting more mismanagement” at the E.P.A.

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The review’s outcome galvanized opponents in the furniture industry. They then targeted a provision that mandated new testing of laminated wood, a cheaper alternative to hardwood. (The California standard on which the law was based did not require such testing.)

But E.P.A. scientists had concluded that these laminate products — millions of which are sold annually in the United States — posed a particular risk. They said that when thin layers of wood, also known as laminate or veneer, are added to furniture or flooring in the final stages of manufacturing, the resulting product can generate dangerous levels of fumes from often-used formaldehyde-based glues.

Industry executives, outraged by what they considered an unnecessary and financially burdensome level of testing, turned every lever within reach to get the requirement removed. It would be particularly onerous, they argued, for small manufacturers that would have to repeatedly interrupt their work to do expensive new testing. The E.P.A. estimated that the expanded requirements for laminate products would cost the furniture industry tens of millions of dollars annually, while the industry said that the proposed rule over all would cost its 7,000 American manufacturing facilities over $200 million each year.

“A lot of people don’t seem to appreciate what a lot of these requirements do to a small operation,” said Dick Titus, executive vice president of the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association, whose members are predominantly small businesses. “A 10-person shop, for example, just really isn’t equipped to handle that type of thing.”

Photo
 
Becky Gillette wants strong regulation of formaldehyde. Credit Beth Hall for The New York Times

Big industry players also weighed in. Executives from companies including La-Z-Boy, Hooker Furniture and Ashley Furniture all flew to Washington for a series of meetings with the offices of lawmakers including House Speaker John Boehner, Republican of Ohio, and about a dozen other lawmakers, asking several of them to sign a letter prepared by the industry to press the E.P.A. to back down, according to an industry report describing the lobbying visit.

Within a matter of weeks, two letters — using nearly identical language — were sent by House and Senate lawmakers to the E.P.A. — with the industry group forwarding copies of the letters to the agency as well, and then posting them on its website.

The industry lobbyists also held their own meeting at E.P.A. headquarters, and they urged Jim Jones, who oversaw the rule-making process as the assistant administrator for the agency’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, to visit a North Carolina furniture manufacturing plant. According to the trade group, Mr. Jones told them that the visit had “helped the agency shift its thinking” about the rules and how laminated products should be treated.

The resistance was particularly intense from lawmakers like Mr. Wicker of Mississippi, whose state is home to major manufacturing plants owned by Ashley Furniture Industries, the world’s largest furniture maker, and who is one of the biggest recipients in Congress of donations from the industry’s trade association. Asked if the political support played a role, a spokesman for Mr. Wicker replied: “Thousands of Mississippians depend on the furniture manufacturing industry for their livelihoods. Senator Wicker is committed to defending all Mississippians from government overreach.”

Individual companies like Ikea also intervened, as did the Chinese government, which claimed that the new rule would create a “great barrier” to the import of Chinese products because of higher costs.

Perhaps the most surprising objection came from Senator Boxer, of California, a longtime environmental advocate, whose office questioned why the E.P.A.’s rule went further than her home state’s in seeking testing on laminated products. “We did not advocate an outcome, other than safety,” her office said in a statement about why the senator raised concerns. “We said ‘Take a look to see if you have it right.’ ”

Safety advocates say that tighter restrictions — like the ones Ms. Boxer and Mr. Wicker, along with Representative Doris Matsui, a California Democrat, have questioned — are necessary, particularly for products coming from China, where items as varied as toys and Christmas lights have been found to violate American safety standards.

While Mr. Neltner, the environmental advocate who has been most involved in the review process, has been open to compromise, he has pressed the E.P.A. not to back down entirely, and to maintain a requirement that laminators verify that their products are safe.

An episode of CBS’s “60 Minutes” in March brought attention to the issue when it accused Lumber Liquidators, the discount flooring retailer, of selling laminate products with dangerous levels of formaldehyde. The company has disputed the show’s findings and test methods, maintaining that its products are safe.

“People think that just because Congress passed the legislation five years ago, the problem has been fixed,” said Becky Gillette, who then lived in coastal Mississippi, in the area hit by Hurricane Katrina, and was among the first to notice a pattern of complaints from people living in the trailers. “Real people’s faces and names come up in front of me when I think of the thousands of people who could get sick if this rule is not done right.”

An aide to Ms. Matsui rejected any suggestion that she was bending to industry pressure.

“From the beginning the public health has been our No. 1 concern,” said Kyle J. Victor, an aide to Ms. Matsui.

But further changes to the rule are likely, agency officials concede, as they say they are searching for a way to reduce the cost of complying with any final rule while maintaining public health goals. The question is just how radically the agency will revamp the testing requirement for laminated products — if it keeps it at all.

“It’s not a secret to anybody that is the most challenging issue,” said Mr. Jones, the E.P.A. official overseeing the process, adding that the health consequences from formaldehyde are real. “We have to reduce those exposures so that people can live healthy lives and not have to worry about being in their homes.”

The Uphill Battle to Better Regulate Formaldehyde

The magical quality Mr. Lesnie created in shooting the “Babe” films caught the eye of the director Peter Jackson, who chose him to film the fantasy epic.

Andrew Lesnie, Cinematographer of ‘Lord of the Rings,’ Dies at 59

Mr. Goldberg was a serial Silicon Valley entrepreneur and venture capitalist who was married to Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer of Facebook.

Dave Goldberg Was Lifelong Women’s Advocate

Dave Goldberg, Head of Web Survey Company and Half of a Silicon Valley Power Couple, Dies at 47

Ms. Pryor, who served more than two decades in the State Department, was the author of well-regarded biographies of the founder of the American Red Cross and the Confederate commander.

Elizabeth Brown Pryor, Biographer of Clara Barton and Robert E. Lee, Dies at 64

Though Robin and Joan Rolfs owned two rare talking dolls manufactured by Thomas Edison’s phonograph company in 1890, they did not dare play the wax cylinder records tucked inside each one.

The Rolfses, longtime collectors of Edison phonographs, knew that if they turned the cranks on the dolls’ backs, the steel phonograph needle might damage or destroy the grooves of the hollow, ring-shaped cylinder. And so for years, the dolls sat side by side inside a display cabinet, bearers of a message from the dawn of sound recording that nobody could hear.

In 1890, Edison’s dolls were a flop; production lasted only six weeks. Children found them difficult to operate and more scary than cuddly. The recordings inside, which featured snippets of nursery rhymes, wore out quickly.

Yet sound historians say the cylinders were the first entertainment records ever made, and the young girls hired to recite the rhymes were the world’s first recording artists.

Year after year, the Rolfses asked experts if there might be a safe way to play the recordings. Then a government laboratory developed a method to play fragile records without touching them.

Audio

The technique relies on a microscope to create images of the grooves in exquisite detail. A computer approximates — with great accuracy — the sounds that would have been created by a needle moving through those grooves.

In 2014, the technology was made available for the first time outside the laboratory.

“The fear all along is that we don’t want to damage these records. We don’t want to put a stylus on them,” said Jerry Fabris, the curator of the Thomas Edison Historical Park in West Orange, N.J. “Now we have the technology to play them safely.”

Last month, the Historical Park posted online three never-before-heard Edison doll recordings, including the two from the Rolfses’ collection. “There are probably more out there, and we’re hoping people will now get them digitized,” Mr. Fabris said.

The technology, which is known as Irene (Image, Reconstruct, Erase Noise, Etc.), was developed by the particle physicist Carl Haber and the engineer Earl Cornell at Lawrence Berkeley. Irene extracts sound from cylinder and disk records. It can also reconstruct audio from recordings so badly damaged they were deemed unplayable.

“We are now hearing sounds from history that I did not expect to hear in my lifetime,” Mr. Fabris said.

The Rolfses said they were not sure what to expect in August when they carefully packed their two Edison doll cylinders, still attached to their motors, and drove from their home in Hortonville, Wis., to the National Document Conservation Center in Andover, Mass. The center had recently acquired Irene technology.

Audio

Cylinders carry sound in a spiral groove cut by a phonograph recording needle that vibrates up and down, creating a surface made of tiny hills and valleys. In the Irene set-up, a microscope perched above the shaft takes thousands of high-resolution images of small sections of the grooves.

Stitched together, the images provide a topographic map of the cylinder’s surface, charting changes in depth as small as one five-hundredth the thickness of a human hair. Pitch, volume and timbre are all encoded in the hills and valleys and the speed at which the record is played.

At the conservation center, the preservation specialist Mason Vander Lugt attached one of the cylinders to the end of a rotating shaft. Huddled around a computer screen, the Rolfses first saw the wiggly waveform generated by Irene. Then came the digital audio. The words were at first indistinct, but as Mr. Lugt filtered out more of the noise, the rhyme became clearer.

“That was the Eureka moment,” Mr. Rolfs said.

In 1890, a girl in Edison’s laboratory had recited:

There was a little girl,

And she had a little curl

Audio

Right in the middle of her forehead.

When she was good,

She was very, very good.

But when she was bad, she was horrid.

Recently, the conservation center turned up another surprise.

In 2010, the Woody Guthrie Foundation received 18 oversize phonograph disks from an anonymous donor. No one knew if any of the dirt-stained recordings featured Guthrie, but Tiffany Colannino, then the foundation’s archivist, had stored them unplayed until she heard about Irene.

Last fall, the center extracted audio from one of the records, labeled “Jam Session 9” and emailed the digital file to Ms. Colannino.

“I was just sitting in my dining room, and the next thing I know, I’m hearing Woody,” she said. In between solo performances of “Ladies Auxiliary,” “Jesus Christ,” and “Dead or Alive,” Guthrie tells jokes, offers some back story, and makes the audience laugh. “It is quintessential Guthrie,” Ms. Colannino said.

The Rolfses’ dolls are back in the display cabinet in Wisconsin. But with audio stored on several computers, they now have a permanent voice.

Ghostly Voices From Thomas Edison’s Dolls Can Now Be Heard
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