Archive for March, 2016

Not trying to neg’: State Dept. blasted for travel advice to ‘ugly’ people

The Department of State has apologized after making an offbeat tweet where it seemed to warn Americans to avoid getting scammed by not overestimating their own attractiveness when traveling abroad.

On Wednesday, the agency’s Bureau of Consular Affairs took to Twitter to offer Americans practical travel advice when traveling overseas, using the hashtag #springbreakingbadly.

Most of the advice using the hashtag was innocuous, but things took a personal turn in one tweet that has since been deleted.

“Not a ‘10’ in the US?” the department asked, referring to a rating of physical attractiveness. “Then not a 10 overseas. Beware of being lured into buying expensive drinks or worse—being robbed.”

The tweet was meant to be a clever way to warn people about scams that rely on flattery, but many criticized the tweet for being condescending or even sexist.

The State Department, however, rebuked these claims, pointing out that it didn’t mention gender and that it’s wasn’t trying “neg” anyone, referring the tactic of using backhanded compliment when flirting.

Others on Twitter found humor in the tweet, and criticized those outraged at it for being too sensitive.

A parody account was created, with tweets dedicated to lampooning the agency’s misfire.

Hours after making its ill-fated tweet, the agency issued an apology, adding that it was only trying to issue useful advice.

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Cops Criminally Charge DJ For Playing NWA’s ‘F*ck Tha Police




Is the United States turning into a police state? Incidences like this certainly make it seem that way.

A popular music DJ has just been charged with disorderly conduct for nothing more than playing NWA.’s classic ‘F*ck tha Police’ song, while cops conducted a “raid” on a club for having “too many people in attendance.”

MassLive reported that the incident took place when police officers from Westfield, Massachusetts found themselves called to get ride of 350 people who had exceeded the 160-capacity limit for the club in question.

The place where the music was being Shenanigans Pub.

Kashawn Harris, AKA DJ Boogy, couldn’t believe the ridiculousness of the police raiding a place for having a few more people than the fire department would like to see.

So he began spinning the famous NWA track, which led to the officers giving charging the 25-year-old with disorderly conduct.

“I believed at that time the combination of alcohol, the excessive amount of people in the bar and the song that the DJ chose to play at that time was an intentional act by the DJ to incite the crowd which showed a reckless disregard for public safety,” Officer Juanita Mejias penned in her report.

Harris said that the song was actually due to be played that night anyway, and a snippet was played before the music was shut down.

He said that the bar was cleared of the excess people already when he began playing the song. Still, the police trumped up a charge that he was trying to start a “riot.”

“I had no intention of inciting a riot, it was just college kids having fun,” Harris explained in an interview. “For them to even think I was trying to start riots was frustrating for me. That’s not my kind of background, that’s not where I come from.”


Origins of Traditional American Holidays

Reblogged on

Source: Origins of Traditional American Holidays

Measure twice, cut once: Lawmaker wants to surgically castrate sex offenders on their tab

© Nikola Solic
An Alabama lawmaker is seeking to offer pedophiles an alternative to prison: castration. Since 2011, State Rep. Steve Hurst has proposed that sex offenders be either chemically or surgically castrated, but now he wants them to pay for it too.

Hurst has filed legislation that would legally require offenders convicted of sexually assaulting a child under the age of 12 to be surgically castrated before being released from prison. HB 365 is something of a passion project for Hurst, but this year he added an additional twist, requiring sex offenders pay for the operation.

Surgical castration removes a man’s testicles and could become the harshest penalty for sex offenders in the country.

Internationally, laws regarding physical castration have received severe pushback. In 2009, the Council of Europe’s Anti-Torture Committee criticized the Czech Republic for surgically castrating sex offenders. The committee called it, “invasive, irreversible and mutilating.

In 2014, that same committee asked Germany to stop offering surgical castration as an option for sex offenders. In Germany, surgical castration is only performed upon request by the sex offender and is rarely used.

Although nine states have variations of castration laws, all the current laws on the books are for chemical castration. Chemical castration entails giving men Depo Provera, a synthetic female hormone and can be reversed by discontinuing treatment.

Hurst shot down the chemical castration as an alternative in 2011 when he told the Anniston Star, “The chemical castration, that’s fine as long as they are taking the medication, but who is to say they will continue taking it?

This bill is Hurst’s personal mission, he told the Anniston Star, that “we need something to protect the children out here.” But many do not feel that castration is the answer.

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Harvard law school to drop official shield over legacy of slavery


President Barack Obama’s alma mater – Harvard Law School – will scrap its official shield featuring the crest of a slave-owning family that helped endow the oldest US university, amid protests that it is a distasteful symbol of a racist past.

Student activists have protested for nearly half a year for the removal of the shield, which was adopted as the symbol of Harvard Law School in the 1930s. It says “Veritas” and shows three sheaths of wheat, a symbol derived from the family crest of an 18th-Century slave owner, Isaac Royall Jr., who endowed the first law professorship at Harvard. Royall was the son of an Antiguan slaveholder, notorious for treating his slaves with extreme cruelty, including burning 77 people to death, the law school said.

In 1936, the Harvard Corporation and Radcliff Trustees adopted seals for 27 Harvard academic units, naming the Royall crest, with its three sheaths of wheat, as the Law School shield.

“We must always face not only the fact of slavery, but also its legacies and ongoing questions of injustice within our community and beyond,” the law school’s dean, Martha Minow, said in her letter to the Harvard Corporation, which has the final say as the university’s highest governing body.

The school set up a 12-member committee of staff, students and alumni to review the crest.

“We believe that if the Law School is to have an official symbol, it must more closely represent the values of the Law School, which the current shield does not,” the committee stated.

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