In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

Something something Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana. And that is all I will ever say about that, because good fucking god the intense interest and judgment and scrutiny that child will face and I don't want to contribute even a single iota more of it.

[Content Note: Religious extremism; violence] Fucking hell: "Two gunmen were killed and a security guard wounded in an attack Sunday outside a controversial Dallas-area event where organizers were holding a contest for cartoons featuring the Muslim prophet Muhammad, police said. The Muhammad Art Exhibit and Cartoon Contest, led by prominent conservatives who are critical of Islam, was ending when two men drove up in a car and began shooting at a Garland school security officer, Bruce Joiner, who was apparently helping protect the building, city officials said." Joiner was shot in the leg and will be fine.

Insert a bunch of mendacious arguments here about free speech and censorship and freedom of religion, none of which will include the following thought: Just because you can say something doesn't mean you should. And it certainly doesn't mean you have to, as many arguments go. Some provocation serves no purpose other than to provoke people to anger and then say, "See?! They're angry!" When people do this online, we call it clickbait. When people do this in real life, we're supposed to call them fucking heroes.

I don't think anyone should be attacked over cartoons. I also don't think anyone should be unnecessarily provoked with them. This would probably be a good time to recall the words of Mohamed Binakdan.

[CN: Earthquake; death; video may autoplay at second link] The death toll following the devastating recent earthquake in Nepal has reached 7,250, and runway damage has "forced Nepalese authorities to close the main airport Sunday to large aircraft delivering aid to millions of people following the massive earthquake." But there are still bright spots among a lot of bleak news: 101-year-old Phanchu Tamang has been rescued and is now in stable condition. Wow.

[CN: Carcerality] This fucking guy: "Days after Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton laid out proposals for criminal justice reform at Columbia University, former Republican candidate Mitt Romney took time to criticize the presidential hopeful's comments about Baltimore and mass incarceration. ...'I was concerned that her comments smacked of politicization of the terrible tragedies that are going on there. When she said we're not going to have mass incarcerations in the future, what is she referring to? We don't have mass incarcerations in America. Individuals are brought before tribunals, and they have counsel. They're given certain rights. Are we not going to lock people up who commit crimes?'" Shut up shut up shut up.

[CN: Rape culture] In unsurprising and yet still terrible news: Senator Kirsten Gillibrand says that the US military is not "being honest about the problem" of sexual abuse. For example, the numbers of sexual assaults seem to be purposefully deflated by not including in statistics about military sexual assault the "spouses of service members and civilian women who live or work near military facilities," despite the fact that they "are especially vulnerable to being sexually assaulted."

This is good news: "The Supreme Court has turned down the hideously anti-gay Liberty Counsel's challenge to New Jersey's ban on 'ex-gay' therapy for minors."

Neat: "The distinctive song of a secretive and elusive bird in central China has helped researchers to identify it and deem it to be a new species to science. Scientists first heard the harsh call of the Sichuan bush warbler in 1987, but they only recently gathered enough data to formally describe it. The new species, Locustella chengi, has been named after Prof Cheng Tso-hsin, a distinguished Chinese ornithologist."

And finally! A pet shop in Brazil filled its cages and crates with shelter animals and guess what happened? "The store found owners for all shelter animals displayed in the store and what's best, if the store hadn't told customers the animals were shelter pets, customers would have not known the difference." ♥

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