Thursday, May 28, 2015

Archive: March, 2013

POSTED: Tuesday, March 19, 2013, 11:40 AM

During Monday's opening arguments in the trial of “House of Horrors” doc  Kermit Gosnell, his defense attorney, Jack McMahon, defended the deplorable condition of Gosnell’s West Philly abortion clinic. He said the prosecution’s experts unfairly expected Gosnell to uphold  “Mayo Clinic standards” at the clinic he ran for poor women in the “nitty-gritty” neighborhood of tk.

"They don't run an urban clinic; a low-cost, urban, poverty-stricken clinic," McMahon said. “They want to put Mayo Clinic standards on a West Philadelphia clinic. If you want Mayo Clinic standards, go to the Mayo Clinic.”

The way he said it, you’d think that every non-Mayo Clinic abortion center is as filthy as Gosnell’s Women’s Medical Center was at 38th and Lancaster. Here’s how the hell-hole was described in the DA's 2011 grand jury report:

Ronnie Polaneczky @ 11:40 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Saturday, March 16, 2013, 8:21 AM

Philadelphia Magazine hoped to launch a conversation about race when it published its March cover story, "Being White in Philly."

The conversation turned out to be about how racist the essay was. Everyone from Philly Mag's own writers to Mayor Nutter to yours truly have found the piece contemptible.

On Monday, March 18, Philly Mag will host a discussion called "Can We Talk About Race?" - although I'm sure it will wind up being a discussion about the magazine piece - at the National Constitution Center. The event is free and open to the public, but spots are limited. To attend, click here to register online.

Ronnie Polaneczky @ 8:21 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Thursday, March 14, 2013, 3:41 PM

The roar that will come from Caroline Pla’s supporters won’t be as loud as the one that rocked Vatican City yesterday when the new Pope was announced. But the cheers will no doubt be as heartfelt, for a great reason:

Caroline will be playing CYO football this fall, thanks to today’s decision by Archbishop Charles Chaput to allow co-ed participation in CYO football effective in the 2013 season.

Chaput’s decision is a touchdown for reasonableness, kindness and common sense.

@ 3:41 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Friday, March 1, 2013, 9:16 AM
Courtney Simmons at Constitution High School, smiling as always. (Alejandro A. Alvarez / Staff Photographer)

My column today about Constitution High School senior Courtney Simmons doesn't begin to do justice to the 18-year-old cancer survivor who also lost her beloved mom and sister to the disease.

So I'm grateful to the Philadelphia School District for this video of Courtney, which was produced when she was selected the district's Office Depot Senior of the Month. Give a click and meet Courtney, one of the strongest young women I've ever met.

To watch the video, click here.

Ronnie Polaneczky @ 9:16 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
About this blog

When my phone rings here at the Daily News, nine times out of ten the caller begins the conversation with, “Yeah, so what happened was…”.

Because this is Philly, the caller doesn’t say, “My name is Bob” – or Mary – “and I wonder if I could have a moment of your time?” Philadelphians are too direct for that. They just say, “Yeah, so what happened was…”, and then tumble into a tale they think oughta be shared with a wider audience. I love getting these calls (even the ones where it becomes clear, after 30 seconds, where the caller sowed the seeds of his own misery), because they give me chance to connect with fellow citizens in a way that no other job allows. Well, okay, no other job for which I’m remotely qualified.

That’s why my blog is titled “So What Happened Was…”. To me, it’s the quintessentially Philly way of saying, “Once upon a time.” When I hear it, I know a good story is coming. And I can’t wait to see how it turns out.

Ronnie Polaneczky has been an award-winning columnist for The Philadelphia Daily News since 1999, offering a front-steps perspective on every aspect of city life, from the sublime to the stupid. In her past life, she was the editor-in-chief of Atlantic City Magazine, associate editor at Philadelphia Magazine and a fulltime freelancer published in Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, Reader's Digest, Men's Health, MarieClaire and others. She lives with her husband, daughter and various pets in the city's Fairmount section, where she dreams of one day singing The National Anthem at an Eagles game. In addition to her column and blog, you can enjoy Ronnie's musings in podcast form here.

Read more from Ronnie Polaneczky at Earth to Philly, the Daily News blog on anything and everything "Green Reach Ronnie at

Ronnie Polaneczky Daily News Columnist
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