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Churches defend clergy loophole in child sex abuse reporting

angel moroni
© AP Photo/Rick Bowmer
The angel Moroni statue atop the Salt Lake Temple is silhouetted against a cloud-covered sky, at Temple Square in Salt Lake City on Feb. 6, 2013.
It was a frigid Sunday evening at the Catholic Newman Center in Salt Lake City when the priest warned parishioners who had gathered after Mass that their right to private confessions was in jeopardy.

A new law would break that sacred bond, the priest said, and directed the parishioners to sign a one-page form letter on their way out. "I/We Oppose HB90," began the letter, stacked next to pre-addressed envelopes. "HB90 is an improper interference of the government into the practice of religion in Utah."

In the following days of February 2020, Utah's Catholic diocese, which oversees dozens of churches, says it collected some 9,000 signed letters from parishioners and sent them to state Rep. Angela Romero, a Democrat who had been working on the bill as part of her campaign against child sexual abuse. HB90 targeted Utah's "clergy-penitent privilege," a law similar to those in many states that exempts clergy of all denominations from the requirement to report child abuse if they learn about the crime in a confessional setting.

Comment: Despite the church wanting to give their parishioners a chance to repent and find their way with God's help, there's simply no way to know whether after confessing, an abuser will change his or her ways. On the other hand, if a law exists that makes it mandatory for clergy to report sexual abuse, it's likely abusers simply won't confess. But it would seem that child abuse is simply too egregious a crime to be left in the hands of the church. The most important outcome, after all, is that the abuse stops. Abusers can do their repentance in jail.

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Laptop

Libs of TikTok suspended from Twitter AGAIN

Libs of ticktock
On Wednesday, the popular Twitter account Libs of TikTok revealed that she has been suspended from Twitter once again, receiving yet another seven day suspension.

"Once again, I have received a wrongful 7-day suspension as the result of a targeted harassment campaign from the Left to deplatform me," Libs of TikTok wrote on Substack.

Comment: This is not the first time Libs of Tiktok has been suspended, and several attempts have been made by other social media networks to deplatform this account: Despite many claims made about this account, Libs of TikTok doesn't share much original content but rather re-posts videos published by liberals. In doing so it merely provides the Left with a reflection of itself, and for that, is considered far too dangerous.


Biohazard

Jet fuel is still being found in USS Nimitz's water, despite assurances it was clear

Nimitz
© Navy
Sailors aboard the aircraft carrier Nimitz rig the flight deck during a general quarters drill on Sept. 15, 2022, a day before jet fuel was found in the carrier's drinking water.
Navy officials said Tuesday that tests of the aircraft carrier Nimitz's potable water system are still showing traces of jet fuel, despite indications last week that the system was flushed and restored.

The investigation into how jet fuel is getting into Nimitz's water system continues, and when the ship's emergency detour to San Diego's Naval Air Station North Island will end remains unclear.

Jet fuel was first found in the 47-year-old carrier's water system on Sept. 16 while it was conducting a pre-deployment cruise in the Pacific Ocean.

Comment: This comes on the heels of two other recent and regrettable incidents involving the militaries of the West:





Target

Pornhub partners with child abuse charities to intercept illegal activity

Pornhub
© Budrul Chukrut/Sopa Images/Rex/Shutterstock
There are 175,000 searches for sexual images on Pornhub that trigger child-abuse checks every month in the UK alone, according to data provided by a groundbreaking new chatbot designed to intercept illegal activity on the adult site.

The startling figures are revealed as the chatbot is rolled out on Pornhub, the world's biggest pornography site, after a trial that began in March.

When someone visiting the Pornhub site uses one of 28,000 words that are linked to the abuse of children - including codewords - it will prompt a pop-up message informing them that no results exist and that they are searching for potentially abusive and illegal imagery.

The user will then be directed into a conversation about their behaviour and encouraged to get help from Stop It Now!, a helpline aimed at supporting offenders and preventing people watching online child abuse.

Tech experts at the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) - a UK-based organisation that removes images of child abuse from the internet - have spent more than two years designing the chatbot, using research gathered from offenders by a child protection charity, the Lucy Faithfull Foundation. The project has been funded by Safe Online - End Violence Against Children. Pornhub agreed to host the technology.

Arrow Down

Flesh-eating drug 'tranq' meant for animals now linked to thousands of heroin, fentanyl ODs

drug use overdose
© Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
The flesh-eating animal tranquilizer xylazine has been linked to thousands of drug overdoses across the country.
The flesh-eating animal tranquilizer xylazine has been linked to thousands of drug overdoses across the country as it inundates heroin and fentanyl supplies in places such as Philadelphia, Delaware and Michigan, reports say.

Known on the street as "tranq," the sedative is now found in 91% of Philly's heroin and fentanyl supplies, according to a report earlier this month in the peer-reviewed journal Science Direct.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that its prevalence is also soaring in President Biden's home state of Delaware, it was reported last week.

Arrow Down

Illegal alien accused of killing Deputy Michael Hartwick is one of nearly 1M illegal got-aways in US under Biden

Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Hartwick
An illegal alien accused of killing Pinellas County, Florida, Sheriff's Deputy Michael Hartwick is one of nearly a million illegal aliens who have successfully entered the United States under President Joe Biden.

As Breitbart News reported, 32-year-old illegal alien Juan Ariel Molina-Salles from Honduras has been arrested and charged with killing Sheriff's Deputy Michael Hartwick in a hit-and-run crash as the deputy was working detail on a construction site.

Police allege that Molina-Salles was operating the large frontloader that hit and killed Hartwick. With many illegal aliens working on the construction site, Molina-Salles allegedly took off from the scene and gave his hard hat and vest to illegal alien Elieser Aurelio Gomez-Zelaya who proceeded to hide the articles of clothing.


Bizarro Earth

Virgin Atlantic allows male airline crew to wear skirts to "express true identity"

Virgin Atlantic
Virgin Atlantic is allowing male cabin crew and pilots to wear skirts and women to wear men's suits so staff can "express their true identity" at work. The Telegraph has more.
The Sir Richard Branson-owned airline is dropping rules that require its employees to wear "gendered uniform options" in a U.K.-first for the aviation industry.

And the changes will not be limited to Virgin Atlantic staff. In a signal that the days of passengers being referred to as "Mr" and "Mrs" are coming to an end on flights, the carrier has changed its ticketing system to allow gender neutral markers.

Juha Jarvinen, Virgin Atlantic's commercial chief said the airline wanted staff "to embrace their individuality and be their true selves at work".

He added: "At Virgin Atlantic, we believe that everyone can take on the world, no matter who they are.

"We want to allow our people to wear the uniform that best suits them and how they identify and ensure our customers are addressed by their preferred pronouns."

Historically known for its strict standards on dress code, height and age requirements, and a ban on displaying tattoos, the airline industry is evolving to better reflect changes in social norms.

Bullseye

Professor fired for mocking microaggression 'policies' gets last laugh: university to fork over $165,000 in settlement

micro agression manual garbage

Nathaniel Hiers properly classified University of North Texas microagression policies
The University of North Texas has agreed to pay $165,000 in damages and attorneys' fees to settle a lawsuit filed by a professor it fired after he criticized fliers about microaggressions.

Nathaniel Hiers had sued the university in April 2020, alleging the taxpayer-funded institution rescinded the math scholar's employment contract "without notice" for making a joke, a violation of his free speech rights.

At issue was "a stack of fliers" on microaggressions Hiers noticed in the department faculty lounge in November 2019. He read them, found the ideas wanting, then wrote "Don't leave garbage lying around" in jest on a chalkboard, with arrows pointing to the fliers, the lawsuit had stated.

Hiers was fired soon after, with his superiors citing the incident as the reason.

Black Cat

Grifters: EU politicians criticize Ukrainian 'welfare tourism'

Ukraine refugees poland
© Louisa GOULIAMAKI / AFP
Refugees stand in line as they wait to be transferred to a train station after crossing the Ukrainian border into Poland March 7, 2022.
German and Polish officials have pointed out cases of social benefit system abuse

German opposition leader Friedrich Merz found himself under fire on Tuesday for pointing out that some Ukrainians who have sought shelter in his country are abusing the welfare system.

Though Merz has apologized, the mayor of Przemysl in Poland - who said much the same thing on Monday - has not.

"We are now experiencing welfare tourism from these refugees: to Germany, back to Ukraine, to Germany, back to Ukraine," Christian Democratic Union (CDU) leader Merz told Bild TV on Monday.

Megaphone

Hijab of contention: Death of a young woman has sparked mass protests in Iran. What's next?

Iranians, hijabs, women
© AFP
Iranians wave the national flag as they march during a pro-hijab rally in the capital Tehran on September 23, 2022.
For more than a week, Iran has been in the throes of mass protests provoked by the death of Mahsa Amini. The 22-year-old woman died in hospital after spending 48 hours in a coma. As some media outlets believe, and according to witness reports, her condition was a result of being beaten by morality police for wearing her hijab "improperly."

Demands to punish those responsible for Amini's death were quickly followed by complaints about the country's economic woes and corruption. The authorities are scrambling to come up with a response, as Iran's president, Ebrahim Raisi, tries to put out fires on both the domestic and international fronts, and the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei is reportedly ill or possibly dying.

Immorality police

On September 13, Mahsa Amini, 22, and her brother were on their way to meet their family in Tehran when they were stopped by the morality police. This is nothing much out of the ordinary in present-day Iran and amounts to just a "routine" check of a woman's attire.

In this case, Amini was escorted to the police station to receive 'education' as her worried brother was told that "everything is fine, she'll be back in an hour."