Wednesday, March 11, 2015
On Beheading Arabs, Netanyahu's Legacy of Darkness, and the Mitzvah of Voting Against It
Push Comes to Shove Dept: Facing a tight election, Israeli political leaders are descending to new depths with Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's brazen brutal declaration that "those who are against us - we must take an axe and chop off their heads." The incendiary call to murder those deemed "disloyal" to Israel prompted condemnation, demands for Lieberman's arrest for incitement, and the suggestion his racist fear-mongering is emblematic of a toxic political leadership that must go.
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Monday, March 9, 2015
For Truth and Honor's Sake: I Will Show You Change, and It Will Not Include George Bush
Amidst the spectacle and soaring rhetoric of Sunday's Selma march, an incisive morality play was quietly unfolding: Diane Nash, a key King colleague 50 years ago, declined to march, citing the odious presence of George Bush. "The Selma movement stands for nonviolence and peace and democracy, and George Bush stands for... violence and war," she declared. She also urged disaffected citizens not to wait for those in power but "make the necessary changes." Nash and John Lewis give us hope.
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Friday, March 6, 2015
You Have Nothing To Lose But Your Rhinestones: Kids Choose Commie-Themed Prom
The mission of Albuquerque's Cottonwood Classical Preparatory School is to provide "a dynamic environment where students learn to think for themselves." So now they are. This week seniors voted online to hold a Communist-themed prom they dubbed “prom-munism,” a choice that sparked some turmoil among conservative students variously bemused - "jokesters"! - or freaked - "a very powerful and destructive idea" - or just bummed they wouldn't have an aquarium theme. To each according to his or her needs.
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Thursday, March 5, 2015
Under the Dome: Trying To Save This Whole System We Call Home
Talk about viral: Last weekend, over 200 million people in China watched a new, deeply personal, meticulously researched, $160,000 documentary about that country's calamitous pollution, which on its worst "airpocalypse" days is said to resemble an airport smoking lounge. Some view the impact of the film, released on the eve of the National People's Congress, as akin to China's "Silent Spring." Journalist and filmmaker Chai Jing hopes so: "This is how history will be made."
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Wednesday, March 4, 2015
The Power of Persuasion: India's New Super Hero Is A Tiger-Riding, Rabble-Rousing Rape Survivor
India's savage 2012 gang rape of a student who later died caused global outrage and a toughening of sexual violence laws. But societal change comes hard in a country where a rape is still reported every 16 minutes - and where a new film in which one perpetrator blithely blames the victim for being out that night is causing furor, yet little surprise. Enter Priya's Shakti, a new comic book starring a rape survivor turned superhero. Priya's power: Her belief she can transform the world.
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Tuesday, March 3, 2015
Combatants For Peace: It Won't Stop Until We Talk
With the toxic Bibi circus in town - cue talk of "tentacles of terror" - find hope in the extraordinary Combatants For Peace, a joint effort by weary Israeli and Palestinian veterans of violence who've laid down their guns to fight for peace. Led by a former IDF soldier and Fatah militant who both lost daughters to the conflict's "unrightable wrongs," they insist on the need to "hear what is painful" and talk to your 'enemies': "Partners for peace always exist. You only have to look for them."
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Sunday, March 1, 2015
The Wrong (aka Black) Body: Cleveland Says 12-Year-Old Tamir Rice Guilty In His Own Death
In further proof U.S. cops are out of control - cue LAPD killing a homeless man - comes Cleveland's WTF response to a lawsuit by the family of Tamir Rice, shot dead in a park for playing with a toy gun. His death, says the city, was "directly and proximately caused by (his) failure to exercise due care to avoid injury.” To wit: He's to blame for his own murder because he didn't understand he was in the wrong body. The kind that gets shot - the black kind.
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Friday, February 27, 2015
Chicago's Gitmo
More gruesome stories emerge from black victims of a Chicago police "black site" held incommunicado, punched, interrogated, shackled in stress positions and otherwise subjected to "Gestapo tactics" at a Gitmo-like Homan Square. The ensuing outrage has sparked social media campaigns, planned protests and calls for investigation. Connect the abusive dots: Chicago becomes the ugly microcosm, and grim logical conclusion, of a broken system. Sea to shining sea.
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Thursday, February 26, 2015
Ask CPAC: Does Life Begin At Conception for Corporations, and If I Keep My Child Away From Science and History Classes Will That Vaccinate Him Against the Gayness?
CPAC, the annual cabal of wingnuttery that is the Conservative Political Action Conference, is back! It had Ben Carson and Scott Walker and Ted Cruz promising "patriots" will "reignite the miracle of America" with a new Reagan coalition! The best part: a hashtag inviting regular folks to ask questions that went instantly, horribly, gleefully awry. Samples: "Does life begin at conception for corporations?" and "Should minorities be required to hum a Kenny G song in order to vote?"
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Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Occupation Tourism: Savor AC, Wi-fi, Heated Pool, Breakfast Buffet and Picturesque Views Where Disenfranchised People Once Lived
Israel's Netanyahu is being justly pilloried for his blind belligerence on Iran, from his lies on their nuclear program to his grim insistence the U.S. make war, not diplomacy. But his crimes go much further: At home, he has overseen a record expansion of illegal settlements and, with them, a thriving surreal settlement tourism industry - cue hot tubs, night clubs, vineyard tours and IDF Shooting Adventures - to ensure his new Palestinian-less "facts on the ground" stay that way.
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