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Tue, 17 Jan 2017
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Map shows locations of underground sex-slave bars in the United States

© Polaris/Palantir
This map shows all sex trafficking cases, including cantinas, with a Mexico or Central America nexus, based on Polaris-operated hotline data.
Jessica was halfway into her teenage years when the dashing stranger with a silver tongue came to town. The older man singled out Jessica from all the other girls and approached her with a mouthful of promises: A new home, a loving family, money, education—and, most importantly, a way out of her small town in Mexico.

So Jessica packed her bag and followed the pied piper out of town. Shortly after giving birth to their first son, Jessica and her older suitor arrived in New York City with plans to get married and start a new life together. Or so she thought. That's when Jessica's American Dream went horribly sideways.

The man quickly became physically and emotionally abusive, Jessica would later tell counselors. He isolated her from everyone else and forced her to start working seven days a week in cantina bars that doubled as brothels.

Jessica, whose last name has been withheld to protect her identity, didn't realize it at first, but her "courtship" had really been a targeted recruitment by a skilled sex-trafficker. The headhunter had not come to town looking for a wife, rather a victim for the skin trade. And like most so-called padrotes, or Lothario-type recruiters who lure small-town teens into trafficking situations with false promises of romance, work and money, he was playing the long game.

Arrow Down

The 5 signs that show something may be going down on Inauguration Day (VIDEO)

Signs are coming out everywhere signaling some serious shenanigans might be going down on January 20. Let's hope it's all merely hype.

Either way, I have a feeling that this is going to be unlike any inauguration day America has ever seen.

Gold Coins

Black Lady Liberty to feature on US$100 commemorative gold coin

The United States Mint is celebrating its 225th anniversary in a very special way. On April 6, the first in a series of commemorative $100 24-Karat gold Lady Liberty coins will be issued, featuring Lady Liberty as an African American woman.
© US Mint
The $100 24-karat gold coin will be released in April 2017.
On Thursday, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, Deputy Treasury Secretary Sarah Bloom Raskin, and United States Mint Principal Deputy Director Rhett Jeppson unveiled designs for the 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin in the historic Department of the Treasury's Cash Room.

Smithsonian Magazine reports the issuing of the $100 coin is the kickoff to the Mint's 225th anniversary year and is the first in part of a series that will also depict Lady Liberty as Asian-American, Hispanic-American, and Indian-American, "to reflect the cultural and ethnic diversity of the United States."


Journalists create a 'safe space' to discuss how to cover the Trump presidency

After the president-elect's first press conference since the election this week, it appears the mainstream media is in need of a 'safe space'. As The Hill reports, so-called journalists from the Huffington Post, Slate, CNN, and Univision will gather days before Donald Trump's inauguration to publicly discuss "how the news media can and should proceed to cover" the president-elect.

After this happened...
© Branco
Slate will host the event next Wednesday, called "Not the New Normal." CNN's Brian Stelter will moderate the panel at New York University. As The Hill details,
The focus of the discussion will include "how journalists and media companies at large can play a bigger role in making sure that fact prevails over fiction in the coming months and years," according to Slate.

Slate's editor in chief Julia Turner and Slate Group chairman Jacob Weisberg — who hosts "Trumpcast," a podcast dedicated to covering the president-elect — will participate in the panel.

Joining them will be Borja Echevarría, Univision Digital's vice president and editor in chief; Huffington Post editor in chief Lydia Polgreen and New Yorker editor David Remnick.

Most of the panelists were staunchly critical of Trump during the campaign and since Election Day.
Tickets will cost $30, with proceeds benefiting the Committee to Protect Journalists.


Hand over your password!: U.S. Border agents interrogating Muslim Americans, demanding social media information, access to phones

© n/a
Customs and Border Protection agents have been invasively questioning Muslim-Americans at U.S. border crossings about their political and religious beliefs, asking for their social media information, and demanding passwords to open mobile phones, according to a set of complaints filed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

In one case, a 23-year old American citizen alleges that he was choked by a CBP agent after declining to hand over his phone for inspection while crossing the border back from Canada.

The complaints deal with the cases of nine people who have been stopped at various U.S. border crossings, eight of whom are American citizens, and one Canadian. They were filed to the Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection and the Department of Justice.

Comment: See also:

Going away gift: Obama just expanded surveillance powers for Donald Trump
Visitors to US to 'volunteer' social media account details
Foreign travelers will be asked to show their social media accounts when entering the US
Police state USA - The creation of a border security state

Heart - Black

'Bad day' leads woman to smash SUV into T-Mobile store, erratic behavior (VIDEO)

© Ruptly
Police were called to a T-mobile outlet in Palm Springs, Florida on Friday after reports that an SUV had smashed through the front window of the store and the driver had begun assaulting staff members.


Indian 14yo signs government contract to make anti-landmine drones

A 14-year-old Indian boy has signed a deal to commercially produce anti-landmine drones. The child prodigy, who has already developed a prototype, says the idea came to him after learning in the media about the high army casualties caused by land mines.

The zealous inventor, Harshwardhan Zala, is a tenth-grader from Gujarat state in western India.


Dangerously unsafe Indian Point nuclear plant will finally close

© wikipedia.org
Intensely controversial Indian Point nuclear power plant will completely cease operations by 2021, but the move to shutter operations on the facility — located just 25 miles north of New York City — has itself stirred contention.

Legal and environmental battles have raged for years over Indian Point, which supplies nearly one-third of the energy generation for the metropolis and has — in recent times, at least, officially — one of the best track records of any nuclear plant in the U.S.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has for years fought to shut down Indian Point — which he has called a "ticking time bomb" — both for its proximity to a sprawling urban populace and for the plant's disputable safety record. Announcing the coming closure, Cuomo stated this week,

"For 15 years, I have been deeply concerned by the continuing safety violations at Indian Point, especially given its location in the largest and most densely populated metropolitan region in the country. I am proud to have secured this agreement with Entergy to responsibly close the facility 14 years ahead of schedule to protect the safety of all New Yorkers. This administration has been aggressively pursuing and incentivizing the development of clean, reliable energy, and the state is fully prepared to replace the power generated by the plant at a negligible cost to ratepayers."

Wind power will be the governor's primary focus, but that sufficient clean energy infrastructure to replace the two gigawatts of power produced at Indian Point isn't yet in place has brought the eminent shuttering of the nuclear facility into question by both the industry and, surprisingly, even some environmental advocates.


Rape victim jailed for a month to ensure she would testify against her attacker

© Jenevieve Robbins/Reuters
A Houston woman has been traumatized by the District Attorney's office, following her report of being raped by a serial rapist. According to Click2Houston, "Jenny, who is in her 20s, was the star witness in the rape trial of Keith Hendricks after he violently raped and choked her. Hendricks was eventually sentenced to two life sentences for raping women."

But during the trial, Jenny broke down while testifying against Hendricks. Fearing that her star witness would not return to testify, prosecutors decided Jenny, who suffers from bipolar disorder, would need to go to the hospital, and then to jail. Yes, that's right. After a brief stay at St. Joseph's Medical Center, Jenny was "handcuffed, put in the back of a patrol car and taken to jail," according to her attorney Sean Buckley. Adding insult to injury, apparently, not only was the witness raped, forced to testify in front of others about her

Adding insult to injury, apparently, not only was the witness raped, forced to testify in front of others about her trauma but then she was rewarded by being forced to spend nearly a month in jail. A month!

The highly unusual move occurred when prosecutors presented the trial judge with a "witness bond." The judge, Stacey W. Bond, signed the order but cannot comment on the case because the rapist is appealing his conviction. So to paint the picture, at least for around 30 days, both the victim and the perpetrator were locked behind bars. This miscarriage of justice just re-victimized the victim and led to a historic shake-up in the district attorney's office.


Bikers for Trump ready to stand up to protesters

A motorcycle group led by a South Carolina chainsaw artist will ride into the nation's capital on Inauguration Day in support of the 45th President of the United States.

Bikers for Trump, a group of motorcycle enthusiasts, will likely be toeing the line with protesters, who are also expected to be at the event.

"The bikers are certainly used to being outnumbered and we are prepared to form a wall of meat," Chris Cox, the founder of the organization, told the FOX Business Network.

However, Cox said he doesn't foresee any problems occurring during the event, especially after the group's experience at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, where police successfully maintained order between Trump's supporters and protesters.

"We're anticipating a celebration here. We don't anticipate any problems. We have a strict code of conduct where we don't condone violence. But again in the event that we're needed, you can certainly count on the Bikers for Trump," Cox said.