Friday, July 10, 2009

In the news...

United for Neda -- More than two dozen Iranian superstars have united to spread the message of non-violent resistance against the human rights violations by the Iranian government. The music video was recorded in both English and Farsi using only cell phones and can be found on YouTube.

Okay, I’ll try not to rant with this one: Leave it to Texas to attempt to politicize education. Conservatives in Texas are trying to “shift focus of state social studies lessons” away from ‘liberal’ ideas toward much more obviously conservative ones. The article, of course, doesn’t say that, but read it and you’ll see what I mean – Anne Hutchinson, Thurgood Marshall, Brown v. Topeka Board of Education, and Cesar Chavez have all been deemed “overrated” by evangelical ministers and Republican social conservatives. Instead of these people/events that helped end segregation, start women’s rights movements, and end abuses in the labor force, they want us to focus more on Ben Franklin (because we clearly don’t know enough yet), Roe v. Wade and how evil abortion is (okay, they didn’t say that, but let’s face it, they were thinking it). The article also mentioned how “the Founding Fathers wanted a distinctly Christian nation based on biblical principles.” Wrong – not all the Founding Fathers were Christian. Their beloved Franklin, for instance, was actually a Deist. I’m a Christian, but REALLY, Texas? REALLY!?

Police are calling Steve McNair’s death a murder-suicide, which I think a lot of people suspected from the beginning. Evidence says that his mistress, Sahel Kazemi (20), had snapped over fears that she was losing him so she shot him four times then shot herself. McNair’s wife and four children are in my thoughts.

The Group of Eight (G-8) meeting (it’s a economic summit between the world’s leading industrialized nations – Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, and the US) going on in Italy today is focusing on working with representatives of up-and-coming economies (Brazil, China, India, Mexico, and South Africa) to fix global warming. They eight have pledged to make huge cuts in greenhouse gas emissions – 50% reduction of global emissions by 2050, and 80% reduction by the leading countries – but the article mentions that it may not work out. G-8 leaders didn’t actually call on those other developing counties to set specific goals, instead asking them to “undertake quantifiable actions” to cut back, meaning it probably won’t actually happen. Hooray for publicity stunts.

Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni is going to try to ban female circumcision, also known as female genital cutting or female genital mutilation. It’s meant as a rite of passage into womanhood, but it mostly causes complications during labor, is extremely painful because it’s typically done without anesthetic, and makes any sexual activity extremely painful. Good luck Museveni, I honestly hope you succeed.

Now, just days after US troops handed security control over to local forces, bomb blasts killed 64 people in Iraq. Watch, someone will blame the US for this even though it’s due to increased political tensions between Arabs and Kurds in the area. Bombs also killed 25 in Afghanistan earlier today in what was supposed to be an attack on NATO, but didn’t result in a single injury to coalition troops.

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