It looks like the first casualty in D.C.'s newspaper wars (started when the Examiner moved into town) is the ugly, hard-to-navigate design of the old Washington Times website. Good riddance, I say. The new design has some flaws (not a fan of the breaking articles down into multiple pages), but it's a better, more stripped-down look with a superior color scheme. Take a look. One can only hope that a massive renovation is underway for the print edition.
While you're there, it might be educational to give this story, by GetReligion FOB Julia Duin, a read.
The facts: On the night of May 7, one Susan Torres effectively died of a massive brain hemorrhage. Her mind is no more but she was with child at the time of her brain death, and husband Jason Torres and doctors have decided to try to save the child. Dr. Chris McManus explains that "with technology, we can keep the body alive. How long, we cannot say."
One more complication: Susan has cancer; specifically metastatic melanoma. It's what caused her death and it is causing all kinds of complications for doctors. Duin explains:
If the cancer does not spread rapidly, there's hope. But if it becomes especially virulent, it can shut down Mrs. Torres' body or enter the womb. Or cause a spontaneous abortion. The cancer cannot be treated with radiation because the treatment would kill the child. The earliest doctors think the child can survive outside the womb is 25 weeks, which is mid-July.
Here's the scene from the hospital room:
In a room right by the ICU nurses' station, Mrs. Torres lies silent, hooked up to food and oxygen tubes. Her blond hair is spread out on a pillow, and pink and green blankets cover her. A rosary is wrapped around her left hand. A scapular -- a religious badge worn by devout Catholics -- is tied around her right wrist. . . .
Religious paintings and icons are scattered about the room. Next to the window are two reclining chairs on which Mr. Torres spends the night. He spends about 12 hours at his wife's side, then goes home for a few hours to see the couple's 2-year-old son, Peter.
"He knows she's not around," Mr. Torres says. "He's too young to come into the room. Either he wouldn't recognize her, or he'd recognize her, and that'd be worse. It'd upset him terribly."