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Fri, 24 Mar 2023
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Police State Joke: Seattle bombsquad blows up abandoned flashlight near FBI office

A security guard working at the FBI's Seattle office at 3rd Avenue and Seneca Street reported a suspicious object outside the building, just after 2 a.m. the morning of October 8th.

The Bomb Squad was then sent in with two bomb disposal robots to investigate the mysterious object.

At that point, Seattle police closed streets around the Abraham Lincoln Building at Third and Seneca for over two hours as police and explosive experts were examining the device.

Then at around 4:38 a.m one of the robots were sent in to create an explosion to blow up the device while the area was under their control.

After blowing up the mysterious device FBI Spokeswoman Ayn Dietrich said that it was not explosive or hazardous and no threat had been made to the agency, but it was in fact just a flashlight, that may or may not have had a blinking red light on it somewhere, which gave the security guard and the entire police force the indication that it must be a bomb.


This is news? Research finds sexist stereotypes dominate front pages of British newspapers

Duchess of Cambridge
© Reuters
The Duchess of Cambridge and her sister Pippa Middleton were two of the women most likely to be pictured on newspaper front pages.
Study reveals 78% of front-page articles are written by men, and 84% of those quoted or mentioned are male

Sexist stereotypes, humiliating photographs of women and male bylines dominate the front pages of British newspapers, according to research carried out by the industry body Women in Journalism (WiJ).

Male journalists wrote 78% of all front-page articles and men accounted for 84% of those mentioned or quoted in lead pieces, according to analysis of nine national newspapers, Monday to Saturday, over the course of four weeks.

The only females to be regularly pictured in the period were the Duchess of Cambridge; her sister, Pippa Middleton, and the crime victim Madeleine McCann. The three males most likely to be photographed were Simon Cowell, whose biography was published that month; Nicolas Sarkozy, who was fighting an election, and Prince William.

Women's groups, which complained about sexist stereotypes in the media in a presentation to the Leveson inquiry into media ethics, welcomed the research. Anna van Heeswijk, chief executive of Object, said: "With newspapers so male-dominated, is it any surprise that women are portrayed the way they are? Changing the number of female writers and the ways in which women are portrayed in the media is crucial if we are serious about wanting a socially responsible press."

Harriet Harman, the deputy leader of the Labour party, who has long campaigned against sexism, said: "The media is supposed to reflect the views of everybody. How much is it really reflecting the views of women in this country? In parliament, with men in the media reporting on men in parliament, there is a double whammy."

Heart - Black

Video: High school bans student who committed suicide and teen mom from appearing in yearbook

Menahga High School, located in Menahga, Minnesota, is not going to include Kyle Kenyon, who committed suicide last January, in the school yearbook.

In response, 100 of Kenyon's classmates have signed a petition to get a memorial page dedicated to him, reports CBS Minnesota.

However, school superintendent Mary Klamm told WCCO-TV that she consulted with mental health experts and concluded:
"It was recommended that we don't do a memory page."
Peggy Havnes, Kenyon's mother, told WCCO-TV:
"The only way I can hold it together is with all the support we have. I do think we need to use it as a teaching tool, because if we can prevent any other family from going through this, then we've accomplished something."
Another person who is not going to appear in the school yearbook is teen mom Stephanie Myer, who wanted to take her photo with her child, Aubree.

As for Myer and her daughter, Klamm said:
"We're looking at different options. With modern technology it doesn't have to happen tomorrow or within the next week."


Trayvon Martin's parents launch website, CCE to 'shine light' on 'stand your ground' law

trayvon martin
© Change for Trayvon
On the eve of another meeting of the state task force reviewing "stand your ground," the parents of Trayvon Martin unveiled a new website and political committee aimed at changing the controversial law.

A new committee of continuous existence, or CCE, called "Change for Trayvon" and a corresponding website will collect funds to "be distributed to candidates, elected officials and efforts which support the mission of... revising Stand Your Ground laws across the nation to ensure there is judicial or prosecutorial oversight," the site says.


Two teens killed in Chicago, 24 others wounded across the city in night of gun violence

© Devlin Brown / Chicago Tribune
Two people were shot in the 6300 block of South Rhodes Avenue.
Two teenagers were killed and 24 others were wounded during a city night filled with gun violence.

Police said 15 of 24 shooting victims were gang affiliated.

The youngest victim, was 17 years old and died from his wounds after being shot along with a cousin as the two went to meet a girl in the West Woodlawn neighborhood on the South Side Saturday night, according to family. Authorities identified the teen as Richard Modell but his family said his name was Modell McCambry.

The dead teen may have been targeted due to a feud between two rival gangs, one of which police say he belonged to. He and his 18-year-old cousin were on their way to meet a girl when someone walked up and opened fire in the 6300 block of South Rhodes Avenue just before 9:30 p.m., according to police.

The teen died after being taken to John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County in "extremely critical" condition with a gunshot wound to the chest. Modell lived about three blocks south of where he was killed, a spokesman for the Cook County medical examiner's office said.

The man's cousin was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital with multiple gunshot wounds; his condition was not available. Responding paramedics found both of them in the street.

Police said they don't have any reason to think the older of the two affiliates with a gang and believe he may have been shot because he was with Modell.


Long after death, Confederate spy honored in Arkansas

© The Associated Press/Arkansas History Commission
A copy of a 1912 painting by artist William Besser from a Civil War era photograph of David O. Dodd

Little Rock, Arkansas - The story of David O. Dodd is relatively unknown outside of Arkansas, but the teenage spy who chose to hang rather than betray the Confederate cause is a folk hero to many in his home state.

Street signs and an elementary school in the state capital have long borne Dodd's name, and admirers gather at his grave each year to pay tribute to Dodd's life and death.

"Everyone wants to remember everything else about the Civil War that was bad," said one of them, W. Danny Honnoll. "We want to remember a man that stood for what he believed in and would not tell on his friends."

A state commission's decision, though, to grant approval for yet another tribute to Dodd has revived an age-old question: Should states still look for ways to commemorate historical figures who fought to defend unjust institutions?

"(Dodd) already has a school. I don't know why anything else would have to be done to honor him," James Lucas Sr., a school bus driver, said near the state Capitol in downtown Little Rock.

Arkansas' complicated history of race relations plays out on the Capitol grounds. A stone and metal monument that's stood for over a century pays tribute to the Arkansas men and boys who fought for the Confederacy and the right to own slaves. Not far away, nine bronze statues honor the black children who, in 1957, needed an Army escort to enter what had been an all-white school.

Bad Guys

Collision of Navy ships prompts Pentagon inquiry

USS San Jacinto
© The Associated Press/U.S. Navy, Specialist 1st Class Tommy Lamkin
The guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto approaches at sea in the Atlantic Ocean June 6, 2012.
The United States Fleet Forces Command said in a news release that the submarine Montpelier and the cruiser San Jacinto collided about 3:30 p.m. Saturday during a training exercise. No one was injured and both ships were able to continue to operate under their own power, Navy officials said.

Nevertheless, the extent of any damage to the vessels was not clear, said Lt. Cmdr. Brian Badura of the Fleet Forces Command.

"We have had circumstances where Navy vessels have collided at sea in the past, but they're fairly rare as to how often they do take place," Commander Badura said. Navy officials said the collision was under investigation, but declined to offer specifics on where it occurred.

The Montpelier arrived at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay in southern Georgia, he said in a statement late Sunday. The San Jacinto arrived at Naval Station Mayport in Jacksonville, Fla.

Arrow Down

Missouri couple sues doctors for separating baby's head during grisly botched birth, and trying to cover it up: reports

Newborn Beheaded
© Facebook
Arteisha Betts and Travis Ammonette, of Florissant, Mo., claimed their son, Kaden Travis Ammonette, died during birth after the delivering doctor separated his head from his neck.
A Missouri obstetrician separated a baby's head from his body during delivery and then shoved the newborn back into the mother and performed an emergency C-section to cover up the ghastly blunder, a couple claims in a lawsuit.

Arteisha Betts and Travis Ammonette, of Florissant, filed a 10-count complaint in St. Louis County Circuit Court last month claiming doctors wrongly pushed them to have a vaginal delivery, decapitated their son and then tried to cover it up, according to local Patch and Courthouse News Service.

The details of the couple's claim are horrifying.

During a February 2011 appointment, the couple claimed, Dr. Susan Moore told them their baby boy would have to be delivered by caesarian because his abdomen was too large for a normal birth, according the CNS report.

Betts went into labor on March 22, just 28 weeks into what is normally a 40-week pregnancy.

The delivering doctor at St. John's Mercy Medical Center, Dr. Gilbert Webb, refused to perform a C-section and "would only agree to deliver her baby by way of attempted trial of vaginal delivery," the complaint said, according to Patch.

Webb refused to allow them to go to a different hospital, and "Betts consented to a trial of vaginal delivery under duress and protest," the complaint said.

People 2

"We don't owe, we won't pay": Thousands protest in Spain's capital over government austerity measures

spain monetary crisis
© Associated Press
Protesters carry banners against financial cuts and unemployment as they demonstrate against the country's near 25 percent unemployment rate and stinging austerity measures introduced by the government, in Madrid, Spain, July 21.
MADRID - Several thousand anti-austerity protesters in Spain marched down a major street in the capital banging pots and pans Saturday.

Many protesters also blew whistles as they blocked part of the Castellana boulevard Saturday carrying placards saying "We don't owe, we won't pay."

"None of us pushed the banks to lend huge sums of money to greedy property speculators, yet we are being asked to pay for other's mistakes," 34-year-old civil servant Maria Costa, who was banging an old pot along with her two children, said.

With unemployment nearing 25 percent, Spain has introduced biting austerity measures as well as financial and labor reforms in a desperate bid to lower its deficit and assuage investors' misgivings.


Wyclef Jean faces criminal probe over Haiti charity

Rapper will have to explain how fund backed by celebrities managed to burn through $16m in two years.

Wyclef Jean

Wyclef Jean
Wyclef Jean, the hip-hop artist and former candidate for the presidency of Haiti, said yesterday he was "committed to ensuring that things are made right" amid news of a criminal investigation into the finances of his personal charity.

The musician's lawyer, Avi Schick, confirmed that Jean's Haitian aid organisation, Yele, went out of business in August, leaving a trail of legal disputes and unpaid debts. Regulators in the US, where it was registered, are now attempting to establish how the non-profit organisation burned through $16m (£10m) in public donations in just over two years.

A report in yesterday's New York Times alleged that much of the money was spent on administration, public relations and consultants, or was funnelled to outside businesses owned by friends and relations of Jean. In one mysterious transaction, detailed in Yele's tax returns, the singer's brother-in-law was given $600,000 for helping with the "rebuilding of Haiti".

In 2010, the charity devoted more than half of its $9m budget to travel, staff salaries, consultant fees and expenses related to its property portfolio, the newspaper revealed. It spent $37,000 to rent space at a Manhattan recording studio owned by Jean, and another $375,000 went on "landscaping" for its offices.