In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

[Content Note: War on agency] The bad news and the good news and the bad news: "So far this year, 13 states have adopted 21 new restrictions designed to limit access to abortion," but that's "about half the number (41) of similar restrictions that had been enacted by this point last year." So it's slowing down (good news), but also? Bad News: There's not as much need for new restrictions when Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers (TRAP) laws are effectively shutting down abortion access in entire states. "Altogether, 26 states have some sort of TRAP law, a sharp increase from 2000, when only 11 states had such requirements. With the addition of these new laws, 59% of women of reproductive age live in a state that has enacted TRAP provisions."

[CN: War; abduction; murder] "Israel has launched what it described as an open-ended and escalating offensive against the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, as air strikes and naval gunfire hit 50 sites overnight. As part of a new offensive dubbed 'Operation Protective Edge,' Israeli troops have been mobilised along the Gaza border and a limited number of reserves called up for a possible ground invasion. ...Rocket attacks from Gaza—initially from Islamic factions other than Hamas—have been increasing in recent weeks against the backdrop of a major Israeli operation against Hamas on the West Bank following the kidnapping and murder of three teenagers whose bodies were found last week. Air strikes by Israel, both following the discovery of the bodies and in response to rocket fire, have escalated in recent days despite assessments by analysts in Gaza and Israel that neither Hamas nor Israel wants a prolonged or bloody conflict." Emphasis mine.

[Please note: We have always managed to have thoughtful and civil threads in this space on previous skirmishes between Israel and Hamas, and I trust that can happen again. If the thread gets ugly, it will just be closed. Please comment thoughtfully—and bear in mind that neither Israelis nor Palestinians are monolithic groups; among Israelis are people who agree with the Netanyahu administration's actions and people who condemn those actions; among Palestinians are people who agree with Hamas' leadership's actions and people who condemn those actions. There is not consensus among diaspora populations, either.]

[CN: Guns; violence] The defense has rested in Oscar Pistorius' trial for murdering Reeva Steenkamp, whom he was dating at the time he killed her. Now all that is left is the verdict.

[CN: Extreme weather; death; video may begin playing automatically at link] A super typhoon has made landfall in Japan, and one person has been killed. Typhoon Neoguri's winds reached an estimated 150 mph on Sunday, but the storm has quieted somewhat. Still: The Japan Meteorological Agency "ssued a rare emergency warning, its highest level of warning, Monday evening to the island of Miyakojima, warning of a storm surge up to about 7 feet (2 meters) and offshore waves up to 46 feet (14 meters), and asking residents to prepare for the worst" and "very heavy rain, some wind damage, power outages, and at least some storm surge flooding on west and south-facing shorelines of Kyushu and Shikoku are anticipated as Neoguri moves through."

[CN: Racism; xenophobia] Republican Texas Governor Rick Perry is a rude dipshit. Think that's harsh? Well, I can back it up! Here he is being rude and here he is being a dipshit. CASE CLOSED, YOUR HONOR.

[CN: Antisemitism; domestic violence; racism] Mel Gibson says he's apologized a million times and everyone needs to get over his being a total abusive asshole. Welp, I'm convinced! (I am not convinced.)

And finally! Here is just a great video of a dog being scared of a cat, and a cat being an asshole, and another dog chasing the cat to save the dog. Cats and dogs, y'all, amirite?

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