Beauty and life lessons from Helen Gurley Brown and Phyllis Diller
Former Cosmopolitan editor Helen Gurley Brown (left) and comedian Phyllis Diller.
August 21st, 2012
06:30 PM ET

Beauty and life lessons from Helen Gurley Brown and Phyllis Diller

By Rachel Weingarten, Special to CNN

Editor's note: Rachel Weingarten is a style expert and brand consultant. She teaches beauty history and marketing at the Fashion Institute for Technology and New York University and is the author of "Hello Gorgeous! Beauty Products in America '40s-'60s." Find her on Twitter @rachelcw

(CNN) - Two iconic women with seemingly radically different world views died recently, leaving legacies of humor, pioneering spirit, and striking public personas.

As divergent as their styles were, former Cosmopolitan editor Helen Gurley Brown and comedian Phyllis Diller each used their appearance as a means to an end: Diller to make herself the butt of the joke, Gurley Brown to get ahead personally and professionally - and to show generations of women how to do the same. Whether chasing beauty or mocking it, these women broke ground by reflecting and reshaping the values of their eras while paving the way for the women behind them.

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Filed under: How we look • Who we are • Women
August 21st, 2012
04:00 PM ET

Navigating the mentally ill away from jail

By Rich Phillips, CNN

Savannah, Georgia (CNN) - As Billy Carruthers confidently walks through Savannah's Forsyth Park, the homeless residents do a double take.

Most remember Carruthers as a mentally ill, homeless, drug addict who spent his day conning tourists to buy books, then using the money to feed his cocaine habit. Carruthers is bipolar and suffers from depression. It took many years of arrests and falling off his medication before he could kick his cocaine habit.

"They look at me today, there's one thing, beyond a shadow of a doubt that they see. They see change. They see recovery," Carruthers said. "They say, 'Where you been? What happened to you?' That's what recovery is."

Psychiatrist: I hate suicide but also understand it

Today, Carruthers is helping those still living on the streets cope with their mental illnesses as part of an experimental program in Georgia. Supporters of the Opening Doors to Recovery program believe it can help stop prisons, jails and hospitals from becoming dumping grounds for the mentally ill.

The program is trying to show state leaders the benefits of putting state money into this front end program rather than funding prisons and hospitals - which are much more expensive, according to Nora Haynes who oversees the project for the National Alliance of Mentally Ill, or NAMI.

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Filed under: Disabilities • Health • Where we live
August 21st, 2012
11:23 AM ET

Celebration, surprise, humor after Augusta National admits first women

What do you think of Augusta National's decision? Tell CNN iReport here

By Greg Botelho, CNN

(CNN) - The offices of SPARK, a nationwide coalition of girls-only programs, were abuzz Monday as news spread about Augusta National's decision to allow female members for the first time in its 80-year history.

"Shock" was a common sentiment, the organization's executive director said, not because the famed Augusta, Georgia, club finally decided to open its doors to another gender, but because they hadn't done so until now.

"The girls honestly were pretty surprised that Augusta had been discriminating against women like this," said Dana Edell, referring to the teenagers that comprise much of SPARK's staff. "They are horrified that (the club) could legally and blatantly (exclude women)."

Augusta National Golf Club admits first female members

Most of these girls were in elementary school when women's rights activist Martha Burk first ratcheted up public pressure on what was then probably America's best known men's-only club. Yet the majority of those women's rights activists responding to Monday's news were well aware of Augusta National's history and that of the decade-long fight to force it to reverse its policy, not to mention the even longer campaign for gender equality.

For them, hearing former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina businesswoman Darla Moore can now hang out in Augusta's clubhouse with corporate and other leaders from around the Southeast and nation was cause for celebration.

Burk admitted that her first reaction, upon hearing of Augusta National chairman Billy Payne's statement, was "we won - and we did."

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Filed under: Girls • History • How we look • Sports • Women
Court blocks provisions in immigration laws, lets some controversial ones stand
Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley signed the states immigration bill into law last year. Monday, an appeals court blocked some provisions and upheld others.
August 21st, 2012
08:18 AM ET

Court blocks provisions in immigration laws, lets some controversial ones stand

By the CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) - An appeals court on Monday sided with the federal government in blocking several provisions in Alabama and Georgia's controversial anti-illegal immigration laws, while allowing other key parts of those laws to stand.

Advocacy groups like the American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Poverty Law Center applauded the decisions, with National Immigration Law Center executive director Marielena Hincapie saying in a statement they "should send a strong message that state attempts to criminalize immigrants and their loved ones will not be tolerated."

Still, while three judges from the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals did strike down more challenged provisions than they allowed in a pair of rulings, officials from both Alabama and Georgia pointed out that the vast majority of their states' immigration laws remain valid.

"The essence of Alabama's immigration law has been upheld by today's ruling," Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley said in a statement. "The core of (the) law remains if you live or work in the state, you should do so legally."

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Filed under: History • Immigration • Where we live