Moroccan girls not punished for kissing each other


This video says about itself:

4 November 2016

Two teenage Moroccan girls are facing jail time after they were caught kissing #FreeTheGirls

Fortunately, these girls are not going to jail.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Acquittal for kissing Moroccan girls

Today, 13:57

Two Moroccan girls who stood trial in Marrakesh because they had kissed each other have been acquitted. The teenagers were suspected of homosexuality. The judge ruled that the two should go back to their parents.

The girls, 16 and 17 years old, were arrested in October, after the mother of one of the teens had reported them. She had found on her daughter’s phone a picture of the girls kissing each other.

After the two were arrested, the mother said she was sorry that she had reported her daughter. At that time, the case could not be stopped any more. The judge ruled that the parents of the girls should pay the costs.

A lot of attention

The case sparked outrage in Morocco. In that land sometimes gay men are on trial, but it was the first time that two girls were persecuted for that reason.

Human rights organizations from at home and abroad wanted the authorities to drop the charges. That has not happened, but all that attention led to the girls being acquitted, according to correspondent Sjoukje Rietbroek.

British police sexual abuse scandal


This video from Britain says about itself:

“Police and sexual exploitation“: HM Inspector Mike Cunningham

8 December 2016

More than 300 police officers have been accused of using their position to sexually exploit people, including victims of crime, a report has said.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Hundreds of British police officers accused of sexual abuse

Today, 17:13

More than 300 British police officers have been accused of sexual abuse during the past two years. The HMIC inspectorate, which checks the work of the British police, announces this. It is yet another abuse scandal in Britain after reports of widespread abuse by, among others, TV personalities and in the football world.

British police officers abuse their authority according to the inspection report, offending against crime victims, alcoholics and drug addicts, but especially against victims of domestic violence.

‘A disease’

The data are from the period March 2014 to March of this year. Police top brass speak in this context of a “disease to be eradicated.” Moreover, prospective policemen must adopt the mindset that this is unacceptable, say senior police officials.

Less than half of the complaints appears to have reached the police complaints committee, according to the report by the inspectorate. The abuse has often remained unpunished; according to the HMIC there is a significant discrepancy between the number of allegations and dismissals from the police.

Donald Trump Christmas Lego satiric video


This video from the USA says about itself:

How The Donald Stole Christmas

2 December 2016

Alisha & Scott’s 4th Annual Holiday Animation

Ever wonder what would happen if Trump took over the North Pole? What a disaster! Sad!

Wishing you a lovely holiday season and an even better new year. (Plus, we wanted to get this out to you while we still have our first amendment rights.)

Donald Trump — Mike O’Gorman
Melania Trump — Meiyee Apple Tam
Santa Claus — Zachary Gonzalez-Landis
Vladimir Putin — Matt Kawczynski
Mary — Jen Bailey

Music:
Totentanz – Composed by Franz Liszt – Performed by Neal O’Doan – Used under Creative Commons License

Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy – Composed by P. I. Tchaikovsky – Performed by Kevin MacLeod – Used under Creative Commons License.

By Lee Moran in the USA:

Lego Donald Trump Makes Christmas Anything But Great Again

“I’m calling for a total ban on Gingerbread men.”

12/03/2016 04:07 am ET

This Lego Donald Trump will be on the naughty list ad infinitum.

The plastic version of the president-elect seizes control of the North Pole just two days after his inauguration, in the latest stop-motion animated video by Alisha Brophy and Scott Miles.

And as Santa Claus, he immediately sets to work in reshaping the holidays to be exactly how he wants them.

Russian President Vladimir Putin makes a brief appearance, and there are references to Trump’s spat with the cast of the “Hamilton” musical and his ejection of a baby from a campaign rally.

There’s even a mention of his disgusting comments about women.

“When you’re Santa, you can do whatever. Grab ‘em by the antlers”, Trump as Santa says, before calling “for a total ban on Gingerbread men,” in reference to his campaign vow to ban Muslims from entering the U.S.

President-elect Donald Trump announced Friday that he was setting up a panel of top bankers, hedge fund bosses and corporate CEOs to advise him on economic policy once he takes office in January. He named Stephen A. Schwarzman, CEO of Blackstone Group, as the chairman of the panel: here.

American artist’s post-Trump mural


Tatyana Fazlalizadeh and her mural

By Priscilla Frank, Arts Writer, The Huffington Post in the USA:

Street Artist Delivers Powerful Message To White America

“America is black. It is Native. It wears a hijab … “

11/29/2016 08:39 am ET | Updated 9 hours ago

Oklahoma has voted Republican in every presidential election since 1968, and this year’s result was no different. Donald Trump won 65.3 percent of the state’s vote.

A powerful work of public art mounted in Oklahoma City on Sunday addresses those who gave credence to the racist, xenophobic and misogynistic language that dominated the president-elect’s campaign.

The piece, by street artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, pays homage to black Americans, Muslim Americans, American women, Latino Americans, and American immigrants ― all the populations deemed “other” and so loudly forsaken by the dangerous rhetoric of Trump’s camp.

“After the election, I immediately knew I wanted to make some public art during my trip to Oklahoma in a few weeks for Thanksgiving,” the artist wrote in a comment in Instagram. “I wanted to make something in a very Republican state that was a challenge to whiteness. So, I used a couple of recent drawings, one old drawing, and a drawing I did the day before installing this of my mother, to put together a diverse group of folks.”

The piece reads: “America is black. It is Native. It wears a hijab. It is a Spanish speaking tongue. It is migrant. It is a woman. It is here. Has been here. And it’s not going anywhere.”

“This piece was done specifically to challenge whiteness and the accepted idea of who an American is,” Fazlalizadeh wrote in an email to The Huffington Post. “This work is located in Oklahoma, a very red, Republican state. The site of this piece is just as important to its intent. This work is declaring that people who are non-white and male are a part of this country, are integral to this country, and are not going anywhere.”

The election of Donald Trump has ignited incensed artists and writers around the country, turning creatives into activists. Fazlalizadeh, however, used her artistic prowess to fight social injustice long before Trump was announced president elect.

Fazlalizadeh is best known for her project “Stop Telling Women to Smile”, which highlighted and combated the gender-based street harassment endured by so many around the world. The public artworks juxtapose images of women with the words they wish they could lodge at those who catcalled them, including “My name is not Baby” and “Women are not outside for your entertainment.”

If you are in the Oklahoma City area and wish to see Fazlalizadeh’s work in person, don’t hesitate; the piece, installed using wheatpaste, is meant to be ephemeral. Given its public setting, it could also be subjected to vandalism or other visual reactions.

As many around the country fear for their futures under a leader whose definition of an American fails to include them, we look to artists like Fazlalizadeh to depict in simple and striking terms what it has always and will always mean to be an American.

Rape rampant in Canadian army


This video says about itself:

13 November 2015

Canada’s Sikh Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan has faced racial abuse from his own soldier for being Indian. Apparently, a non-commissioned officer from the Canadian Forces Base commented on Sajjan making a racist reference on social media.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Hundreds of Canadian soldiers assaulted by colleagues

Today, 18:04

Nearly one thousand Canadian soldiers during the last twelve months have been victims of sexual violence and sexual harassment. More than a quarter of the female soldiers have been assaulted during their careers, says the Canadian Statistical Office.

The office examined the situation, because the Canadian army has had for long time a reputation of hostility and aggression against women and homosexuals.

The army top brass began last year a campaign to put an end to harassment and sexual violence, but the Canadian Chief of Staff General Jonathan Vance acknowledges that the campaign appears to have had little effect. He calls the outcome of the investigation “sobering, but not surprising.”

Ban

Vance thinks the sexual mores are substantial problem for the Canadian Forces. “We know about it and try to address it. These new figures make me more motivated than ever to eradicate this behavior and ban the perpetrators from the army.”

The statistical office calculated that sexual assault and sexual harassment in the armed forces appear almost twice as much as in other work environments. 840 soldiers say they had to do last year with “unwanted sexual touching”, 150 soldiers have assaulted people and 110 soldiers complained about other unwanted sexual acts.

Higher rank

About 15 percent of the Canadian Forces are women and most of the complaints came from women soldiers. 49 percent said the perpetrator was a man with a higher rank.

Statistically, for soldiers one may expect that far less than 49% of other soldiers are of higher rank. I have no Canadian army figures on this; but in most armies the higher the rank, the less soldiers with that rank. So it looks like the higher the rank, the worse the sexual abuse.

Among men who reported sexual violence or intimidation, the perpetrators were primarily soldiers in the same rank.

The report does not mention any case of a soldier with a lower rank assaulting or harassing someone of higher rank.

Eight out of ten surveyed Canadian soldiers have also witnessed or have been targets last year of inappropriate sexual comments, innuendo, insults and jokes, the researchers say.

Men in Canadian army are at ‘significantly’ greater risk of suicide after deployment, study finds: here.

Women in astronomy


This video says about itself:

How a Team of Female Astronomers Revolutionized Our Understanding of Stars

24 February 2016

At the turn of the 19th century, male astronomers mainly studied galaxies, leaving female scientists wide latitude to research and innovate. Indeed they accomplished truly stellar work. Frebel’s book is “Searching for the Oldest Stars: Ancient Relics from the Early Universe“.

From Science News in the USA:

‘The Glass Universe’ celebrates astronomy’s unsung heroines

Women in the 19th century played underappreciated role in mapping and understanding the stars

By Macon Morehouse

8:00am, November 27, 2016

The Glass Universe
Dava Sobel
Viking, $30

In the early 1880s, Harvard Observatory director Edward Pickering put out a call for volunteers to help observe flickering stars. He welcomed women, in particular — and not just because he couldn’t afford to pay anything.

At the time, women’s colleges were producing graduates with “abundant training to make excellent observers,” Pickering wrote. His belief in women’s abilities carried over when he hired staff, even though critics of women’s higher education argued that women “originate almost nothing, so that human knowledge is not advanced by their work.”

Pickering and his “harem” sure proved the critics wrong.

In The Glass Universe, science writer Dava Sobel shines a light on the often-unheralded scientific contributions of the observatory’s beskirted “computers” who helped chart the heavens. By 1893, women made up nearly half of the observatory’s assistants, and dozens followed in their footsteps.

These women toiled tirelessly, marking times, coordinates and other notations for photographic images of the sky taken nightly and preserved on glass plates — the glass universe. These women’s routine mapping of the stars gave birth to novel ideas that advanced astronomy in ways still instrumental today — from how stars are classified to how galactic distances are measured.

Using diaries, letters, memoirs and scientific papers, Sobel recounts the accomplishments of these extraordinary women, going into enough scientific detail (glossary included) to satisfy curious readers and enough personal detail to bring these women’s stories to life.

Sobel traces the origin of the glass universe back to heiress Anna Palmer Draper. The book opens in 1882 with her exulting in hosting a party for the scientific glitterati under the glowing and novel Edison incandescent lights. Her husband, Henry Draper, a doctor and amateur astronomer, had pioneered a way to “fix” the stars on glass photographic plates. The resulting durable black-and-white images revealed spectral lines that could provide hints to a star’s elements — and eventually so much more. Henry’s premature death five days after the party launched Anna’s philanthropic support of the Harvard Observatory and the creation of the glass universe.

Other women featured in the book had a more hands-on impact on astronomy. For instance, Williamina Fleming came to the United States as a maid. But Pickering soon recognized her knack for mathematics. At the observatory, she read “the rune-like lines of the spectra,” Sobel writes, noticing patterns that led to the first iteration in 1890 of the Draper stellar classification system. That system, still used today, was later refined by the observations of other women.

Henrietta Leavitt, a promising Radcliffe College astronomy student slowly going deaf, joined the staff in 1895. While meticulously tracking the changing brightness of variable stars, she noticed a pattern: The brighter a star’s magnitude, the longer it took to cycle through all its variations. This period-luminosity law, published in 1912, became crucial in measuring the distance to stars. It underpinned Edwin Hubble’s law on cosmic expansion and led to discoveries about the shape of the Milky Way, our solar system’s place far from the galactic center and the existence of other galaxies.

The story belongs, too, to Pickering and his successor, Harlow Shapley. Perhaps partly motivated by economics at a time of shoestring budgets — in 1888, women computers earned just 25cents per hour — these men not only recognized, but also encouraged and heralded the women’s talent.

Sobel takes readers through World War II and a myriad of other moments starring women: first woman observatory head; first woman professor at Harvard (of astronomy, of course); discoveries of binary stars, the prevalence of hydrogen and helium in stars, and the existence of interstellar dust. In some cases, it took male astronomers to make those findings stick — the glass universe had a glass ceiling.

After World War II, radio astronomy emerged, and “the days of the human computer were numbered — by zeros and ones,” Sobel writes. Using film to photograph the stars ended in the 1970s. But the glass universe is far from obsolete. The roughly half-million plates hold the ghosts of pulsars, quasars and other stellar phenomena not even imagined when the plates were made. They also offer the promise of more discoveries to come, perhaps by the next generation of women astronomers.

African American women against violence


This video about the USA says about itself:

25 November 2016

#Sayhername, the anti-violence movement for black women started in 2015 in an effort to protect themselves.