In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

[Content Note: Abduction; terrorism; misogyny; abuse] Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan is facing increasing pressure over his government's actions (or lack thereof) regarding the hundreds of girls kidnapped by Boko Haram: "Campaigners for the release of more than 200 kidnapped schoolgirls in Nigeria plan to march on the office of president Goodluck Jonathan this week amid growing calls for him to stand down at the next election. Activists from the #BringBackOurGirls group said they will present a 'charter of demands' to the president, including calls for a more effective presence in militant strongholds and greater engagement with the community of Chibok, where the girls were abducted by Islamic militants more than a month ago. ...The march, planned for Thursday, risks provoking a harsh response from the security forces. Last week police in Abuja moved in to disrupt a rally and disperse protesters who were shouting, 'Bring back out girls now and alive!' Members of #BringBackOurGirls also intend to visit Chibok, contrasting with a public relations debacle in which Jonathan cancelled a visit there last week." I hope that the activists are treated with the respect and safety they deserve.

The US Department of Justice has charged five members of China's People's Liberation Army "in connection with stealing trade secrets from some of the largest American companies, including Westinghouse, United States Steel, and Alcoa. The move was a rare instance of the United States charging foreign government employees with economic espionage, and it increased the tensions between American and Chinese officials who have accused each other in public and in private of using military assets for hacks and cyberattacks." Welp.

[CN: Disaster; death; displacement] Major flooding and landslides in Serbia and Bosnia has caused 35 deaths so far and displaced more than half a million people. The Nikola Tesla power plant, which "supplies electricity for half of Serbia and most of Belgrade," is under threat from the record-breaking rainfall, and the flooding has "disturb[ed] land mines left over from the region's 1990s war, along with warning signs that marked the unexploded weapons." My god.

[CN: Gender essentialism] The ACLU has filed a complaint with the US Department of Education Office for Civil Rights (OCR) against the Hillsborough County Public School district in Florida, alleging that the district's single-sex classrooms violate Title IX: "The Hillsborough School District has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxpayer funds to implement a hidden curriculum promoting the theory that boys and girls are so fundamentally different that they need to be taught using different teaching methods," said Galen Sherwin, Senior Staff Attorney of the ACLU Women's Rights Project. "The truth is that every student learns differently, and our public schools should not be in the business of making crude judgments about children's educational needs based solely on whether they are a boy or a girl."

Heads-up: "A Detroit meat packing company is recalling 1.8 million pounds of ground beef after it was linked to nearly a dozen potentially dangerous E. coli infections in four states, federal agriculture officials said Monday. Wolverine Packing Co., issued the voluntary notice early Monday, pulling ground beef products produced between March 31 and April 18, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service."

[CN: Sexual violence; ideation of self-harm] Actress Pamela Anderson disclosed during a speech at a fundraising event in Cannes that she has survived multiple incidents of sexual abuse. In the moving address, she talks about how her connection with animals helped her survive. I imagine there are a lot of us who can relate to that.

[CN: Death] This is a lovely video of a little boy giving a lovely impromptu eulogy for his grandpa. The sweet wisdom of his acknowledgment that his grandfather lives on via what he taught to others. Blub.

Happy 40th anniversary, Rubik's Cube! You are definitely one of my favorite things ever!

And finally: Here is just a terrific picture of Brad Pitt throwing a can of beer to Matthew McConaughey, followed by another terrific picture of McConaughey drinking that beer.

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