Police officers in Ferguson, Missouri, have begun wearing body cameras after weeks of unrest over the shooting death of an unarmed black teen by a white officer and sharply differing accounts of the incident, officials said on Sunday.
Michael Brown, 18, was shot multiple times by Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9, sparking nearly three weeks of angry protests in the St. Louis suburb and drawing global attention to race relations in the United States.
Law enforcement and witnesses gave differing accounts of what transpired before Brown was shot, with police saying the teen had struggled with the officer. Witnesses say Brown held up his hands and was surrendering when he was shot multiple times in the head and chest.
The discrepancy has revived calls for officers across the county to be outfitted with body cameras to help capture an accurate record of police-involved incidents.
Israel has announced plans to expropriate 4 sq km of Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank.
The decision to appropriate land south of Bethlehem is believed to be the largest seizure by Israel in 30 years.
The military-run local administration said it was a response to the kidnapping and killing of three Jewish teenagers in the area in June.
Palestinians said diplomatic action should be taken against Israel. The US urged Israel to reverse the move.
California is the first state to pass a ban on using the “gay panic” defense to reduce a murder charge.
You can no longer wiggle out of a murder charge in California by saying you were frightened by a scary lesbian.
Current California law allows a murder charge to be reduced to manslaughter if the killing happened in the heat of passion - the so-called “panic defense”. Defendants charged with murdering members of the LGBT community have been able to claim they acted in a “moment of passion” upon discovering the victim was LGBT, and therefor their crime met the requirements for a reduced charge of manslaughter. The bill that passed the Assembly this week will bar defendants from using their victim’s gender or sexual orientation to support a panic defense. An identical bill passed the state senate in May.
Democratic Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla (right) sponsored the bill, which passed on a 50-10 vote. Ms. Bonilla told reporters that such defenses legitimize violence against LGBT people.
Though The American Bar Association advocates curtailing the use of the “gay panic” defense, California is the first state to ban using the “heat of passion” defense because the victim was LGBT.
The bill now heads for Governor Jerry Brown’s desk for his signature.
Susan Bonilla photo via Facebook
Source: Jean Ann Esselink for The New Civil Rights Movement
First, the bill in question is AB2501. I really, really hate the fact that the media pretty much never cites the actual bill when they’re talking about legislation.
Second, the most important thing about this bill is that unlike most bills of this type, AB2501 is fully inclusive of trans people as opposed to being for gays only. To quote the bill itself: “provocation was not objectively reasonable if it resulted from the discovery of, knowledge about, or potential disclosure of the victim’s or defendant’s actual or perceived gender, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation…”
So apparently iCloud was hacked and pretty much every female celebrity’s nudes were leaked. I’d like to remind my followers not to post them, because they’re supposed to be private, and just because some asshole leaked them doesn’t mean you should make it worse by spreading them around.
One of the biggest problems for conservation today is that it ignores 95% of all known species on Earth. Could a company ignored that proportion of its clients or a government so many of its voters? So why does this problem exist in conservation?
Some 90% of all of the Earth’s species are either invertebrates or micro-organisms, and the folly of ignoring the latter is encapsulated by UK Professor Tom Curtis writing in Nature Reviews Microbiology:I make no apologies for putting micro-organisms on a pedestal above all other living things, for if the last blue whale choked to death on the last panda, it would be disastrous but not the end of the world. But if we accidentally poisoned the last two species of ammonia-oxidisers, that would be another matter. It could be happening now and we wouldn’t even know […]
Ammonia oxidisers are naturally occurring bacteria that are essential for maintaining the most economically valuable nutrient in soil: nitrogen. They are good examples of the other millions of mostly tiny soil species, either microbial or invertebrate, upon which all agriculture and forestry depends.
Their astonishing genetic, chemical, metabolic and population properties are those that generate the essential processes, such as nitrogen cycling, that drive all the primary industries. This being so, the primary industries are obviously biodiversity-based industries.
Yet we are confronted every day with a wide range of opinion that agriculture and forestry are the greatest threats to biodiversity. So how bad is this disconnect?
So you telling me that the U.S has completely cured the American doctor with Ebola in 26 days and he’s being released today. While Africa has been dealing with it since the 70’s and they are still looking for a cure.
Are we surprised?
I mean…they still don’t know if the experimental sera are what helped the doctor and missionary. Ebola has a case fatality rate from 60-90%, so it’s not like everyone dies (and in this case it’s currently lower than the average fatality rate for this strain of ebola). They don’t know why some people survive and others don’t. Supportive care - which just isn’t available to most of those suffering from ebola in African countries - may have just as easily been responsible for their recovery.
The WHO has approved use of the experimental sera now, but there are like, valid reasons for not using people from African countries as guinea pigs. It could be considered unethical.
JB: You’ve also mentioned a concern that there may be challenges with deciding who gets treatment. Can you explain that?
PR: Because the outbreak is mostly occurring in Africa, there’s a rationing problem. If you are going to use this drug, who should get it? There’s quite a bit of controversy about the fact that three people who have gotten [ZMapp] are all Caucasian, all from western countries. None of the people most affected by the outbreak have received this drug. So are all these people equally deserving of this particular drug since we don’t know anything about who it might work better with?
There is a long and sordid history of western pharmaceutical companies doing clinical trials in Africa and subjecting Africans who are poor or under-educated to experimental drugs that would never be used there be used on westerners. Luckily there are conventions that have eliminated that activity. On the other hand, people are concerned that the three people treated so far are from wealthy western countries and not those that are most affected. Either way, this brings up memories about the bad old days. [x]
By all means, pharmaceutical companies should be blamed for deprioritizing work on ebola vaccines and treatments but the experimental drug (ZMapp) is by no means a cure and has not been tested in humans…so it’s misleading to act like the US is just withholding some tried and true secret serum.