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We here in the United States are fighting an obesity epidemic.
That is no secret, but that does not mean it has not had some
startling ramifications. Take, for example, the case of an Ohio
third-grader who was recently wrested from his family and placed
into foster care because he weighs 200 pounds. County social
workers argue that this is an obviously dangerous weight for the
youngster to be at, and his mother is not doing what she ought to
be doing in order to keep him at a healthy weight.
It is safe to assume that most of the protestors who join Occupy
Wall Street and its related movements around the world know and
accept the fact that they may be arrested before they get involved.
Such is the risk of dissent. However, journalists are less likely
to expect to end up in holding cells . They’re just covering the
events, not transgressing social order. Regardless, more than a few
journalists have wound up on the receiving end of police force or
arrested since they have started covering the protests.
A group of University of California-Davis students engaging in
an Occupy Wall Street-related protest on the UC Davis campus on
Friday found out that their peaceful protest was not sitting well
with the university’s police force when one officer, Lt. John Pike,
resorted to firing a group of them with pepper spray at almost
point-blank range. In a video of the incident, widely available
around the Internet, the protestors can be seen sitting calmly on
the ground, their arms linked.
Telecommunications authorities in Pakistan are taking drastic
measures to ensure that no one in the country texts obscene
messages. Anjum Nida Rahman, a spokeswoman for Telenor Pakistan,
said authorities are ordering cellphone service providers to block
text messages that contain any of the more than 1,500 English and
Urdu words they have listed as offensive. For the most part, the
words on the list are run-of-the-mill expletives and sexual terms —
exactly the sort of things one would expect people to consider
When President Barack Obama was campaigning in 2008, one of the
criticisms raised against him was the assertion that he was an
elitist who was disconnected from the American people. Herman Cain
seems to be taking strides to assure that the same accusation will
not be made against him. At a campaign event in New Hampshire, the
Republican presidential candidate reportedly announced, “We need a
leader, not a reader.”
In the wake of the apprehension of a man accused of firing a
semi-automatic rifle at the White House, a student at the
University of Texas decided to lighten the mood by tweeting a joke
about the ordeal. Lauren Pierce, president of the College
Republicans at UT Austin, wrote, “Y’all as tempting as it may be,
don’t shoot Obama. We need him to go down in history as the WORST
president we’ve EVER had! #2012.”
The Internet is great in large part because it is essentially
the 21st century’s wild west — an infinite expanse of unchartered
territory wherein a person can largely be whoever they want and do
whatever they want with very little restriction. That’s why the
Internet is such a hot spot of cultural growth and general
innovation — it affords users the sort of unbridled freedom that
allows them to do the sorts of incredible things that they cannot
do so readily in the outside world.
A new Web domain extension, .xxx, is currently in the process of
being launched. This extension is marketed specifically toward
adult websites. It is meant to make it easier for Internet users to
separate adult content from the rest of the Web. While this new
extension was designed with pornography in mind, some decidedly
non-pornographic companies decided to register .xxx websites,
including a few colleges.
As the Supreme Court prepares itself to hear the cases for and
against the Affordable Care Act this spring, at least one person is
already crying foul over the conduct of two justices. Rev. Al
Sharpton, a man who needs no introduction, has publicly called for
Judges Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia to sit out the case, on
the grounds that they both have clear conflicts of interest.
Zuccotti Park has become a landmark space since the first Occupy
Wall Street protesters laid down with their tarps and sleeping bags
in the New York City park two months ago. It is — or was — the tent
and generator-ridden nucleus of the sprawling movement that has
been reproduced in nearly every major city throughout the nation —
not to mention those areas outside the U.S.
A more cynical critic of the Republican Party might agree with
the popular narrative that the GOP only cares about the wealthy and
point to things like former President George H. W. Bush’s tax cuts
and trickle-down theory of Reaganomics as proof. However, it can be
dangerous to make blanket statements about any political group. If
you are one of those cynics in need of convincing that not every
Republican is out to destroy the middle and lower classes, look no
further than Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., whose recently released
report, “Subsidies of the Rich and Famous,” attacks the government
for spending $30 billion a year on what he calls “welfare for the
The Associated Press reported in September that the New York
Police Department was spying on innocent Muslim people. This
information did not sit well with Muslim-Americans, and rightfully
so. Ethnic profiling, even in the name of the “War on Terror,” is
never acceptable. Now, some groups have decided that, because of
the NYPD’s misconduct, they cannot and should not be trusted.
Near the end of former President George W. Bush’s time in
office, high-level members of his administration decided to
discontinue the torture practice of waterboarding on the grounds
that the practice was illegal. Just ask Stephen Bradbury, head of
the Office of Legal Counsel in the U.S. Department of Justice under
Bush, who in early 2008 stated “there has been no determination by
the Justice Department that the use of waterboarding, under any
circumstances, would be lawful under current law.”
Just like the United States, Russia has problems getting people
to the polls when it comes time for elections. We here in the
states are treated to such lovely campaigns as 2004’s “Vote or
Die,” which for some reason thought the best way to get people to
the polls was to have P. Diddy threaten them. Likewise, the Russian
public has found itself at the hands of a similarly ridiculous
attempt by the United Russia Party to use sex to encourage
Sometimes, it seems like our state’s public employees will never
learn that the Internet is not a private sphere. Union Township
teacher Viki Knox angered many people across New Jersey last month
because of the anti-gay comments she made on her Facebook page.
Now, 29-year-old Hector Rosado, a member of the Orange Police
Department, has been fired for posting racial slurs on his Twitter
Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain has been having a
rough time in the spotlight these days, thanks to sexual harassment
allegations from four different women. But not everyone thinks
these claims need to be taken very seriously. During Wednesday’s
debate on CNBC, host Maria Bartiromo asked Cain about these
allegations, much to the dismay of the crowd, who thought it
appropriate to boo Bartiromo’s question.
Talks are France and Germany are discussing a new “elite” euro
zone. Anonymous sources from within the European Union have told
Reuters that French President Nicolas Sarkozy expressed his opinion
in a speech in front of students in Strasbourg on the border with
Germany, when he defended the idea of one Europe moving at two
speeds, according to Le Figaro. He said the euro zone moving at a
different speed than all 27 EU countries was the only model.
Low-income households will soon have an easier time connecting
to the Internet, thanks to cable companies. As part of the Federal
Communications Commission-led initiative Connect to Compete,
families whose children are eligible for free school lunches will
only pay $9.95 for broadband Internet. According to The Associated
Press, Microsoft also pledged to sells PCs with its Office software
for $250 for those families. Microsoft and Best Buy are also
offering technology training. Morgan Stanley will provide
microfinance services for community-based financial institutions.
About 5.5 million homes that currently do not have broadband access
will be eligible, according to the National Cable &
Telecommunications Association. We give the FCC and those involved
in the program a laurel for their willingness to help lower-income
families compete in an ever-developing world.
Google might be the new weapon in Herman Cain’s arsenal in
battling allegations of sexual harassment — Google ads, to be
exact. Those interested in finding out more about the Republican
presidential candidate’s scandal will see, at the top of any Google
search an ad linking to CainTruth.com, a website denying the
harassment charges. It seems like subliminal advertising for one
man’s cause, but this strategy is perfectly logical, despite
negative press and doubt surrounding Cain.
Ever since President Barack Obama introduced even the notion of
a health care reform, he met persistent resistance on the issue.
Thus far, six appeals courts have seen challenges to the health
care law, with the latest being the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
for the District of Columbia. The American Center for Law and
Justice filed the case, on the grounds that requiring people to
purchase health care infringed on their personal freedom.