Society's Child
Map


Book

Stay home! Michele Obama hit with 1,000-signature petition against speaking at high school graduation 'because it would overshadow the students' big day'

Brown v. Board of Education
© Google
A high school senior started a petition against Michelle Obama speaking at Topeka High School's graduation
  • Taylor Gifford, 18, started an online petition on Thursday with over 1,200 signatures asking that Michelle Obama not speak at Topeka High School graduation
  • Obama's speech is tied to the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Brown v. Board of Education outlawing segregation in schools
  • Some students feel that the speech would overshadow student accomplishments and others feel limited seating will be a problem
If expanding the guest list to include Michelle Obama at graduation for high school students in the Kansas capital city means fewer seats for friends and family, some students and their parents would prefer the first lady not attend.

A furor over what the Topeka school district considers an honor has erupted after plans were announced for Obama to address a combined graduation ceremony for five area high schools next month an 8,000-seat arena. For some, it was the prospect of a tight limit on the number of seats allotted to each graduate.

For others, it was the notion that Obama's speech, tied to the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Brown v. Board of Education outlawing segregation in schools, would overshadow the student's big day.

A high school senior started a petition against Michelle Obama speaking at Topeka High School's graduation
Arrow Down

Warrantless bag searches become ubiquitous for Boston subway, bus travelers

Transit Police
© Bay State Examiner/YouTube
Transit police conducting a warrantless checkpoint in Boston.
Massachusetts - Warrantless bag searches at have become commonplace at travel checkpoints in Boston as concerns for Homeland Security have overridden citizens' right to be free of unreasonable searches. Travelers are forced to "security inspections" of their handbags, briefcases, and other personal possessions.

Large signs indicate that public spaces under the authority of the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) are void of privacy rights. The first bullet point on one of the signs displayed the following:
For the protection and the security of the riding public, all persons choosing to use the MBTA transit system will be subject to security inspections of their handbags, briefcases, and/or other carry on items.
The signage goes on to claim that all persons will be stopped and searched and that declining a search will result in an order to leave the station. Those who object will be arrested and charged with trespassing - on public property - which could result in a $100 fine and up to 30 days in jail.
Life Preserver

U.S. Special Forces' suicide rates hit record levels

© AFP/Don Emmert
The suicide rates for U.S. military members who serve in special forces, like the Navy SEALs and the Army Rangers, have hit all-time highs, said Adm. William McRaven, the head of Special Operations Command.

The rate's been high for two years, he said, Newsmax reported.

"And this year, I am afraid, we are on path to break that," he went on at a conference in Tampa. "My soldiers have been fighting now for 12, 13 years in hard combat - hard combat - and anybody that has spent any time in this war has been changed by it. It's that simple."
People

Climate change in the American mind: 1 in 4 think global warming isn't happening

© Yale
The most recent national Climate Change in the American Mind survey found that 1 in 4 Americans think that global warming is not happening, and half say they are "worried" about it.

Other highlights include:
Chart Bar

Poll: Most Americans believe Obama lies a lot

© Unknown
How much do Americans trust President Obama? Not much, according to a Fox News poll.

Sixty-one percent of respondents in the poll released Thursday said Obama lies at least some of the time on important issues. An additional 20 percent said he lies every now and then.

Only 15 percent believe the president is completely truthful.

Predictably, Republicans were more likely to believe Obama is a liar, with 85 percent saying he lies some or most of the time. Thirty-one percent of Democrats said the president is always truthful.

What's interesting is that independents were slightly more likely to believe Obama lies at least some of the time - 63 percent, compared with 61 percent for the total sample.
Black Cat 2

Pets no longer just part of furniture in France

© Alamy
Pets in France will no longer be considered as pieces of furniture, after parliament voted to grant them new rights.

This should make it easier to prosecute cases of animal cruelty and help courts to decide who gets custody of cats or dogs when couples divorce, campaigners said.

The vote in the national assembly on Tuesday night followed a long campaign by animal welfare groups, but it still has to be approved by the Senate.

MPs decided to review the status of pets after 678,000 people signed an online petition. Among them were a number of French scientists, academics and a former education minister.

Reha Hutin, head of the animal protection society, 30 Millions d'Amis (30 Million Friends), which started the petition, said it was "ridiculous to see pets as pieces of furniture that can walk by themselves".
Pistol

BNP banker, his wife and nephew murdered in Belgium

In the beginning it was banker suicides. Then about two weeks ago, suicides were replaced by outright murders after the execution-style killing of the CEO of a bank in otherwise sleepy (and tax evasive) Lichtenstein by a disgruntled client. Then on Friday news hit of another execution-type murder in just as sleepy, if not so tax evasive, Belgium, where in the city of Vise, a 37-year-old Director at BNP Paribas Fortis was murdered alongside his wife and a 9 year old nephew in a premeditated and orchestrated drive-by shooting.

L'venir reports:
According to Marcel Neven, Mayor of Vise, nothing can yet explain what caused the violent shooting that rocked the neighborhood sports hall of his town this Friday, April 18, late at night. A man of 37 years, Benedict Philippens, bank manager Ans-Saint-Nicolas, was shot. A little 9 year old boy, living in Dolhain, was also killed. A lady, the wife of the man and the boy aunt and godmother, Carol Haid, 37 also died of his injuries on Saturday, in the morning. She was hit by three bullets in the back, said a judicial source.
Control Panel

China: At least 4 Police inspectors beaten to death by angry crowd after they killed a man documenting their brutality


Riots in southeastern China after brutal police-inspector killed a man with a hammer in broad daylight. People smashed several police cars and were attacked with tear gas.
At least 4 Chengguan, the most hated police-inspectors in China, were beaten to death by angry people in Cangnan County of Wenzhou City, Zhejiang Province (located in the industrial southeast), after they killed a man with a hammer. The police-inspectors hit the man with a hammer until he started to vomit blood, because he was trying to take pictures of their violence towards a woman, a street vendor. The man was rushed to hospital, but died on the way.

Thousands of angry people took to the streets, surrounded the police-inspectors in their van, attacked them with stones, bats, and beat them to death. People were shouting that the police-inspectors be killed on the spot for what they did: "Kill them! Kill them!"

Comment: More images at original article.

Vader

Insanity! Police go on a psychopathic rampage, beating, tasing, and macing an entire wedding party

Amanda Lankford and Gil O’Balle

Amanda Lankford and Gil O’Balle

More than a dozen wedding guests were brutalized by police officers during a raid on a wedding party at a hotel. Cops fired tasers, used batons, and generously applied pepper spray to the guests of a bride and groom hours after their wedding. Among them was former pro-baseball star Brandon Backe, who said the shoulder injuries that he received from police caused his pitching career to end.

After causing a gaping head wound, bruises, hair pulled out, a broken nose, and pepper spray on numerous individuals, the only reprimand any of the officers received was a paperwork violation. Interestingly, none of the 3 dozen cops reported any use of force.

Wedding Crashers

An event that should have been happy and memorable turned into violence and chaos when the Galveston Police got involved. A couple had just exchanged their vows and were celebrating with friends and family at the San Luis Hotel.

Everything was fine until an off-duty police officer thought that he had witnessed the bride's brother, Daniel "Cole" O'Balle, 19, walking outside with an alcoholic beverage in his hand. Suspecting an under-aged adult had consumed a beverage without government permission, and violated the "open container" prohibition law, he phoned the police department for backup.
Sheriff

Cowardly California cop misses 'aggressive' dog and shoots himself in the leg

Following a run-in with a dog on Wednesday, a Riverside County sheriff's deputy was hospitalized. In this particular incident, however, the dog isn't to be blamed.

The deputy was serving court documents to a resident in the 3000 block of Eucalyptus Avenue. Around 2 p.m., a dog allegedly came at him "aggressively."

Fearing for his safety, the deputy pulled out his gun but, instead of doing whatever he was planning on doing, shot himself in the leg in the process. He was hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries.
Top