In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

[Content Note: War; death] In Israel and Gaza: "The Palestinian death toll in an Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip rose above 500 on Monday as the army said it had killed 10 militants who tunnelled into Israel, while Gazan officials said an Israeli tank shelled a hospital, killing civilians. A day after he was caught by an open microphone saying sarcastically that the Israeli assault was 'a hell of a pinpoint operation,' U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry flew to Cairo to try to secure an end to the two-week conflict." Hamas killed 13 Israeli solders on Sunday, and the Israeli military killed, in addition to the militants, "28 members of a single family at the southern end" of the Gaza Strip, while, at Al-Aqsa hospital, "four people were killed and 70 wounded when an Israeli tank shell slammed into the third floor, housing operating theatres and an intensive care unit, the Health Ministry said. The Israeli military, which has accused Hamas militants of firing rockets from the grounds of Gaza hospitals and seeking refuge there, had no immediate comment." President Barack Obama has called for an "immediate ceasefire." Which doesn't look likely to happen.

[CN: War; downed plane; death] The war in Ukraine is hindering the investigation and recovery of Flight 17: "As Dutch forensic experts arrived at the scene of the Malaysia Airlines crash on Monday and promised that the train being loaded with the victims' bodies would be moved before the end of the day, heavy fighting broke out between the Ukrainian army and rebels on the outskirts of Donetsk, the main regional city and the hub of the insurgency." Fuck.

[CN: Disablism; death penalty] A study by researchers Robert J. Smith, Sophie Cull, and Zoë Robinson has found that a "majority of the 100 executed inmates examined" for their research "had 'a severe mental illness such as schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder or psychosis.' Yet, because of an oddity in the Supreme Court’s death penalty cases, it is typically constitutional under existing precedents to execute people with these illnesses." In fact, "the overwhelming majority of executed offenders had intellectual and psychological deficits that rivaled—and sometimes outpaced—those associated with intellectual disability and juvenile status."

[CN: Misogyny] Nathan Rabin, the writer who coined the phrase "manic pixie dream girl," regrets having coined it. I dunno. I feel like it was a useful description for a misogynist trope, and it's not really his fault that people took it and used it in a misogynist way to demean female characters as opposed to the people who wrote them. (And, sometimes, real women.)

[CN: War on agency; reproductive coercion] This may be one of the worst things you read today, or ever: "Men have a right and a role in the abortion issue." Basically, this dude thinks their role is reproductive coercion, and definitely not advocating for reproductive rights and protected choice. One word: "MENistry." Yikes.

RIP James Garner. His films and TV roles played such a huge part in my childhood. His death feels so weirdly personal, the way celebrity deaths sometimes do. I feel very sad.

And finally! Smudge the Cat defended his five-year-old guardian from bullies and is a HERO. Yay Smudge! WHO'S A GOOD KITTY CAT? YOU ARE!!!

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