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War On Words: New York City Dept. Of Education Wants 50 'Forbidden' Words Banned From Standardized Tests

Dennis Walcott
© Marla Diamond/WCBS 880
Dennis Walcott

'Dinosaur,' 'Birthday,' 'Halloween,' 'Poverty,' 'Divorce' Among Those Suggested

New York - George Carlin is rolling over in his grave.

The New York City Department of Education is waging a war on words of sorts, and is seeking to have words they deem upsetting removed from standardized tests.

Marla Diamond Talks To Walcott, Student About Banned Words

Fearing that certain words and topics can make students feel unpleasant, officials are requesting 50 or so words be removed from city-issued tests.

The word "dinosaur" made the hit list because dinosaurs suggest evolution which creationists might not like, WCBS 880′s Marla Diamond reported. "Halloween" is targeted because it suggests paganism; a "birthday" might not be happy to all because it isn't celebrated by Jehovah's Witnesses.

Airplane

Update: JetBlue Captain Subdued After Erratic Behavior on Flight

Image
© The Associated Press/Steve Douglas
Emergency workers tend to a JetBlue captain during a Las Vegas-bound flight from JFK International airport Tuesday in Amarillo, Texas.
It was an extraordinarily rare incident in the air - and a frightening one for passengers: A JetBlue captain was locked out of the cockpit and wrestled to the floor by passengers after screaming about a bomb during a flight from New York to Las Vegas.

JetBlue said that the captain of Flight 191, which was diverted to Texas on Tuesday morning, had a "medical situation" and that an off-duty captain traveling on the flight entered the cockpit before the landing "and took over the duties of the ill crewmember once on the ground" in Amarillo.

The co-pilot became concerned that the captain was behaving erratically during the flight, according to the Federal Aviation Administration, which is investigating in coordination with the FBI, the Transportation Security Administration and Amarillo police.

"The captain had exited the cockpit during the flight, after which the co-pilot locked the door," said Brie Sachse, an FAA spokeswoman. "When the captain attempted to enter the locked cockpit, he was subdued by passengers."

Tony Antolino, a security executive from Rye, N.Y., realized something was wrong on the flight when the captain left the cockpit and starting walking erratically through the cabin, drinking water and becoming agitated.

Comment: See this report of a similar incident involving the American Airlines flight attendant: Passengers' terror as flight attendant screams 'We're going to crash!' and rants about 9/11 before being wrestled to the ground by colleagues


Bizarro Earth

Trayvon Protesters Ransack Store

North Miami Beach Walgreens incident caught on video


US, Florida - North Miami Beach police said surveillance video shows dozens of high school students demonstrating in the Trayvon Martin case Friday ransacking a Walgreens store.

The incident occurred during a walkout from North Miami Beach Senior High School in support of Martin, 17, who was fatally shot in Sanford. Protesters have been calling for the arrest of George Zimmerman, 28, who has not been charged because he claimed self-defense in the shooting, according to police.

Minutes after walking out of their school Friday, a large group of students walked through the streets of North Miami Beach. Along the way, they stopped at a Walgreens at 163rd Street and 15th Avenue at about 10:40 a.m.

Surveillance video shows dozens of teenagers running through the store. Police said about 80 to 100 students stormed in, ransacking the shelves, before the school's vice principal ordered everyone outside.

North Miami Beach police said students damaged items worth about $150.

Beer

'Kony 2012' Exec Joked About Keeping $900k Donation for Himself


One of the heads of Jason Russell's Invisible Children organization made a video after the charity won a $1 million grant ... in which he appears to be drunk and joking about keeping $900,000 for himself.

TMZ has obtained the clip ... featuring Jedidiah Jenkins, the Director of Ideology for the charity dedicated to hunting down African warlord Joseph Kony.

The footage appears to be shot in 2010 ... right after Invisible Children won the $1 million grand prize in the Chase Community Giving Facebook competition.

In the video, Jenkins is holding a handle of Smirnoff vodka ... and slurs to the camera, "I don't know if you heard this or not ... but we won a ... we won a million dollars so ... pretty rad."

After chugging from the bottle, Jenkins continues ... "a hundred thousand for Haiti and $900,000 in extra for me."

Hardhat

North Sea gas cloud: "May be months" to stop it

A cloud of explosive natural gas boiling up from the North Sea out of a leak at Total's (TOTF.PA) evacuated Elgin platform forced another shutdown off the Scottish coast on Tuesday as the French firm warned it could take six months to halt the flow.

Elgin platform
© Unknown
The Elgin oil and gas platform is operated by Total
Dubbed "the well from hell" by an environmentalist who said the unusually high pressure of the undersea reservoirs made it especially hard to shut off, the loss of oil and gas output from Elgin - as well as the prospect of a big repair bill - helped drive Total's share price down six percent on the Paris bourse.

As Shell pulled its bigger Shearwater facility offline too and an air and sea exclusion zone was declared around the forlorn Elgin rig, 150 miles (250 km) east of Aberdeen, green campaigners denounced dangers in the technically challenging deep drilling that energy companies have undertaken around the globe to exploit the high prices created by insatiable demand.

Comment: This is looking like BP's Deepwater Horizon's leak all over again. Hopefully, this one will not turn out to be a 'Total' disaster.


Stop

North Sea exclusion zone set as gas surges from leak

Image
© Antoine Agasse/AFP/Getty Images file
A file picture taken on May 29, 2009 shows the Total Elgin-Franklin oil and gas platform in the North Sea 150 miles off Aberdeen on Scotalnd's east coast.
A cloud of explosive natural gas boiling out of a leaking drilling platform off the Scottish coast has led to the evacuation of hundreds of workers and the creation of a two-mile exclusion zone.

Coastguard officials ordered shipping to come no closer than two miles from the abandoned Elgin platform, located 150 miles off Aberdeen, and said there was a three-mile exclusion zone for low-flying aircraft such as helicopters, the BBC reported.

Energy firm Total UK, which operates the platform, said it did not know the source of the leak and was considering all options including drilling a relief well - a solution that could take six months.

"We have mobilised experts from elsewhere in the Total Group to offer additional assistance and help us deal with the incident," it said in a statement.

It evacuated 238 workers from the platform after the leak was spotted on Sunday, according to a report in The Scotsman. The report said Shell had reduced its workforce on two nearby offshore installations because of the drifting gas.

Airplane

JetBlue flight diverted, captain restrained

Image
© REUTERS/Joshua Lott
JetBlue Airways logo
A JetBlue flight to Las Vegas was diverted to Texas on Tuesday due to what the airline described as a "medical situation" involving the captain -- who one witness said had to be restrained after he pounded on the locked cockpit door.

The FBI said it responded to the scene in Amarillo, Texas, and was looking into the incident on Flight 191 from New York. JetBlue said the pilot-in-command elected to divert the flight from New York carrying 135 passengers due to "a medical situation involving the captain."

"Another captain, traveling off duty, entered the flight deck prior to landing at Amarillo, and took over the duties of the ill crew member once on the ground," the statement said.

The ill crew member was removed from the aircraft and taken to a local medical facility, JetBlue said. The plane, which took off from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, had been scheduled to land at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas.

Candle

Woman takes life while chatting on Facebook, no one calls police

A woman described her final moments of purposely inhaling poisonous fumes on Facebook to nine friends, some of whom begged her stop, reports the Associated Press. Some of those friends attempted to track her down on their own, according to the report.

None of them called the police however, or alerted anyone at all.

Claire Lin of Taipei, Taiwan died on March 18. "Too late. "My room is filled with fumes," read Lin's final post. "I just posted another picture. Even while I'm dying, I still want FB [Facebook]. Must be FB poison. Haha."

"Be calm, open the window, put out the charcoal fire, please, I beg you," one friend wrote Lin, who was found by her boyfriend the following morning. Lin's family only found out about the online conversation after her death. A sociologist quoted in the AP article ascribed the incident to isolation in the Internet age. But as with all such unfortunate stories, the reason is never this simple.

Light Saber

Thousands Protest Israeli Diplomat's Presence in Morocco

Image

Up to 100,000 people gathered in Rabat to raise awareness of Israel's slaughter of Palestinians
Organizers claim 100,000 people took part in Land Day rally in Rabat, protested participation of Israeli diplomat in EUROMED meeting. David Saranga taken out back door

Several days prior to the Global March to Jerusalem, thousands of Moroccans took part in a mass rally in Rabat "in support of Jerusalem." Israeli diplomat David Saranga, who was in the city for a conference, was taken out of the building through a side door as demonstrators protested his presence there, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Monday. Palestinian flags were flown and Israeli flags were burned during the march.


Bad Guys

Toulouse Patsy's Father Plans to Sue France Over Son's Death

'France is a big country that had the means to take my son alive,' Mohamed Benalel Merah claims

The Islamist gunman whose murder spree shocked France will be buried in his ancestral homeland Algeria, his father told AFP Monday, adding that he planned to sue France over his son's death.

"(God willing), I have decided to bury my son in Algeria," Mohamed Benalel Merah said, referring to his son Mohamed Merah, 23, who was shot dead by French police on Thursday in Toulouse at the end of a stand-off after his shooting attacks that killed seven.

"Mohamed has an Algerian passport and has been listed with the (Algerian) consulate in Toulouse since his birth," the elder Merah said.

Comment: Merah was not a murderer but one of several innocent persons used by psychopaths in power for political purposes. For the real story of what happened surrounding the Merah case and why the elder Merah has every right to be outraged, see these Sott exclusives:

Toulouse Attacks: The Official Story of the Death of Mohamed Merah is a Lie

Sarkozy's Backers To Use Toulouse Attacks To Steal French Election - UPDATE!