São Paulo (HRW) – Brazil has not addressed longstanding human rights problems that allowed the Zika outbreak to escalate, leaving the population vulnerable to future outbreaks and other serious public health risks, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The government declared an end to the national public health emergency related to the Zika virus in May 2017, but the Zika threat in Brazil remains. The 103-page report, “Neglected and Unprotected: The Impact of the Zika Outbreak on Women and Girls in Northeastern Brazil,” documents gaps in the Brazilian authorities’ response that have a harmful impact on women and girls and leave Read MoreRead More
Ireland (Conversation) – The deal struck by the Democratic Unionist Party to prop up Theresa May’s Conservative minority government in London has led to unprecedented interest in the politics of Northern Ireland. This interest intensified on June 29, when several key developments in the debate around access to abortion occurred at once. Northern Ireland has one of the most restrictive and punitive abortion laws in the world. Abortion is prohibited unless pregnancy poses a threat to the woman’s life or a serious permanent or long-term threat to her physical or mental health. Breach of this criminal prohibition could result Read MoreRead More
Washington DC (HRW) – Tillerson Takes Burma, Iraq Off List Despite Evidence Dozens of children were part of Burma’s armed forces as recently as last week. In Iraq, children have died fighting the Islamic State (also known as ISIS) with Iraqi government military units. But United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson ignored these facts and took Burma and Iraq off the annual list, issued today, that identifies countries that use child soldiers or support militias that do. The US Child Soldiers Prevention Act requires the State Department to publish the list each year. The new list includes the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mali, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Read MoreRead More
Illinois (GREED) – Back in February of this year, CNN started the #realizediwasblack social media movement. A video was posted on Facebook with several notable Black celebrities and public figures, each of them describing the moment they realized they were Black. All of the stories varied from one another, by age or location or by the level of cruelty. But as different as each story was from the rest, they were also very much the same. Each person could recall the traumatizing moment in which their Blackness was used to try and break them. After watching the video, I Read MoreRead More
Norway (Sputnik) – While your garden-variety Islam is known for being conservative and holds patriarchal values in high esteem, there is always room for reform. In a planned “feminist” mosque in the Norwegian capital city of Oslo, men and women will be allowed to pray in the same room, with female priests leading the prayer. The mosque will be located in Oslo city center and will be called Masjid Al-Nisa, which means “the female mosque,” the Norwegian news outlet Vårt Land reported. “I want to start a feminist mosque where women will have as much room as men. Both men and women will Read MoreRead More
World (FEE) – Even with all the news of terrorism around the world, there is something especially chilling and horrifying about the case of 22-year-old Otto Warmbier. Hearing the news of his death wounded me, and, I admit, more so than the usual litany of suffering around the world. If there is anything redeeming to come of this, it should be a wake-up call to all of us to change the way we think about human rights and stop a terrible trajectory of public rhetoric. It tells you all you need to know that the regime believed that this Read MoreRead More
United States (ProPublica) – For decades, the Department of Justice has used court-enforced agreements to protect civil rights, successfully desegregating school systems, reforming police departments, ensuring access for the disabled and defending the religious. Now, under Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the DOJ appears to be turning away from this storied tool, called consent decrees. Top officials in the DOJ civil rights division have issued verbal instructions through the ranks to seek settlements without consent decrees — which would result in no continuing court oversight. The move is just one part of a move by the Trump administration to limit Read MoreRead More
Mexico (Global Voices) – The interactive Femicides in Mexico Map, the most comprehensive and up-to-date of its kind in the country, is – according to its fundraising page – a “citizen-led, civic, independent initiative based on open data which, using geographical coordinates, has been mapping cases of femicide since 2016″. So far, it has recorded 2,355 cases. The map’s creator uses the practical definition of the United Nations model protocol for the investigation of gender-related killings of women, which defines “femicide” as: “the murder of women because they are women, whether it is committed within the family, a domestic partnership, Read MoreRead More
World (FEE) – There is an unfortunate generalization when it comes to public opinion toward the incarcerated population of this country. While the justice system has failed time and again to actually pursue justice, there is a misconception that all those forced to live behind bars rightfully belong there. Unfortunately, with the continuation of the war on drugs and other archaic policies that seek to punish victimless crimes, there are many people spending time locked away from society who truthfully never belonged there in the first place. But even for those who admittedly made grave mistakes and as a Read MoreRead More
Sometimes it’s fun to imagine. Let’s play an imagination game right now. It’ll be fun and be very revealing.
Scenario A: A man tortures and murders a young girl and says “I watched 8mm”.
Scenario B: A man kills dozens in Miami, but people rush to defend him because they like Dexter.
Scenario C: A state employee rapes a girl under his care, but it’s like totally cool because he watched The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.Read More