The Number of American Adults Struggling with English is Skyrocketing and That’s Not Good News

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The Number of American Adults Struggling with English is Skyrocketing and That’s Not Good News

According to a Brookings Institution study, nearly 1 in 10 adults are classified as limited-English proficient (LEP), which is up almost 250% over the last three decades.

The key comment from the study, as published by National Review:

English proficiency is a strong predictor of economic standing among immigrants, regardless of the amount of education they have attained, and it is associated with the greater academic and economic success of the workers’ children.

Here’s a graph showing the increase in immigrant population and non-English speakers:

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The key points from the study:

  1. 66% of LEP adults speak Spanish and the second-most spoken primary language is Chinese.
  2. Lack of English proficiency significantly impacts income. Those that don’t speak English fluently earn 25 to 40% less than those that do.
  3. 82% LEP adults live in large metropolitan areas but are growing in smaller metro areas. For example, McAllen, TX has 32%; El Paso, TX has 29.8%; and the Los Angeles area has 25.7%. On the other hand, the Cincinnati and Pittsburgh areas have 2.5% and 1.6% respectively, the lowest in the country.
  4. A higher-percentage of LEP adults are working than the nation as a whole. The national workforce participation rate is 62.8% whereas the rate amongst those with LEP is around 70%.

Obviously, assimilation of immigrant populations is nothing new for the country, as we are literally a country of immigrants. On the other hand, as the immigrant population grows and LEP adults make up a larger-than-ever percentage of the population, their educational and economic challenges will only increase.

In Sharing His Climate Vision With the U.N., Obama Ignored the Reality of Literally Billions of People

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The President spoke at the U.N. Climate Change Summit earlier this week. His opening lines:

For all the immediate challenges that we gather to address this week, terrorism, instability, inequality, disease, there’s one issue that will define the contours of the century more dramatically than any other.

 

That is the urgent and growing threat of a change in climate.

Throughout Obama’s fifteen minute speech, he made specific encouragements that every nation must “play its part” and that no nation “gets a pass.” He concluded by saying that “our own short-term interests” must be set aside. For the children.

Here’s the question: Do some nations have short-term interests that are actually more important than that of climate change? In other words, are there legitimate priorities for some that supersede those of trying to moderate the effects of the still-arguable question of man-caused variances in the earth’s temperature?

Probably.

Let’s take a look at four possibilities:

  1. Water: over 700 million people lack access to clean drinking water and over a 2.5 billion do not have basic sanitation. Dirty water kills more kids than war, malaria, HIV/AIDS and traffic accidents combined. This may actually be the single most important priority on the planet.
  2. Food: almost a billion of the planet’s residents are underfed. The vast majorities of these live in developing nations. Again, this may be the world’s number-one problem.
  3. Electricity: almost 1.3 billion people of the planet has no access to electricity and over 2.5 billion use fires for cooking food. The implications of this on local economies and health are staggering. This could also be the single most important priority on the planet.
  4. Economic viability: there are vast portions of the planet where the unemployment rate exceeds 25%. Some parts of Africa have unemployment rates north of 50%. With no way of earning income, these people have little or no way of acquiring access to numbers 1, 2, and 3 above.

The idea of marshaling resources to reducing carbon footprints or reducing CO2 emissions is all fine and good, but for people who are thirsty, starving, have no ability to heat or cool their homes or their food, and have no jobs to go to, it would seem that going green is a significantly secondary concern.

As the President also pointed out in his speech, most of the benefits of successfully addressing climate change may not be seen in our lifetimes. For many residents of the world, the massive problems they face literally mean that those lifetimes may not last another day. Perhaps toning down the rhetoric and doing something to address tonight’s problems may be something to consider.

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Here Are 8 Kickass Soldiers Who Were Each Like A One-Man Army

History is full of warriors who get decorated with medals and make great sacrifices. And some beat what by all accounts are impossible odds.

These are 8 superhuman soldiers who were like a one-man army.

1. Corporal Dipprasad Pun

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Image Credit: BBC

Pun is a Gurkha. And all you need to know about Gurkhas is that they are each like a smaller version of Rambo. When Pun was on tour in Afghanistan, the Taliban got the jump on him, or so they thought. Pun’s killer instincts kicked in and he made mincemeat out of 30 of them.

Then, when he was all out of ammo, Pun decided to throw his machine gun tripod at one of the terrorists, shouting “I will kill you” in his native language. That’s nobody to mess with.

2. Joe Medicine Crow

Joe Medicine Crow

Crow is a 100-year-old World II veteran, war-chief, and part of the Crow tribe. Back in his more youthful years, he helped invade Normandy. During one incident, his commanding officer asked him to take out a heavily fortified area of bunkers and artillery. The chances of the mission succeeding were slim, but Crow took seven men and managed to survive, all while blasting a hole in the enemy’s line.  And not one of his men was lost.

In addition, Crow had one encounter with a Nazi who lacked his rifle, but he refused to shoot an unarmed man. So he took him to the ground and wrapped his hands around his throat until the Nazi was calling out for his mother, and made him a prisoner of war.

3. Navy Lieutenant Mark. L Donald

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First off, Donald is a SEAL, which already makes him something like a superman. When Donald was in Afghanistan, he came under enemy fire which was wounding his buddies and Afghan soldiers. Then, Donald put his medical skills to use and helped patch up the wounded, while somehow remarkably continuing to engage his attackers.

The Military Times reported on how “bullets ripped through his clothing” as he provided medical care. As more soldiers were requiring medical attention, Donald did his best to see that they were evacuated. After all of that, he still was able to order the Afghan soldiers to thwart the ambush.

4. Army Master Sergeant John F. Baker

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Image Credit: Pritzkermilitary

As a kid, Baker had the dream of being a Marine, but when he attempted to join they said he didn’t meet the height requirement. Fortunately, Baker’s dreams didn’t die as the Army snatched him up, and it was a move they would never regret.

When Baker was a private in Vietnam on a rescue mission, he and 200 other soldiers ran up against 3,000 Viet Cong.  When Baker’s company commander ended up being killed, he had to act fast. Baker took out four snipers and six machine gun bunkers, saving several of his fellow soldiers in the process. In an interview later, Baker said “my uniform was solid blood.”

5. Army Colonel Robert Howard

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Photo Credit: Theodoresworld

Howard enlisted in the United States Army at seventeen. He served five tours in Vietnam, in which he was wounded fourteen times, and received eight Purple Hearts. And to be honest, his exploits alone could create some awesome Hollywood action films.

Howard, who was a Green Beret, was made from the stuff of heroes. In Vietnam, while eating, an insurgent on a bike threw a grenade at Howard and his fellow soldiers. Everyone leaped for cover but Howard, who grabbed a M-16 from security personnel, shot the would-be insurgent, and then pursued him half a mile down the road to finish the job.

In addition, in Laos, Howard’s recon team was severely injured. He waited until nightfall, checking heartbeats and running his fingers up bodies for anything recognizable. When his touch felt a pair of brimmed glasses one of his team members wore, Howard pulled him to safety. He can be seen grimacing on the left like Clint Eastwood.

6. United States Marine Corps Sergeant Dakota Meyer

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Image Credit: Commandposts

Meyer served two tours, one in Iraq and the other Afghanistan. And it was his bravery in Afghanistan that put Meyer’s name on the heroic wall of fame.

In 2009, then-Corporal Meyer heard the sounds of an ambush over the radio: his brothers in arms were taking fire from all sides. He made a quick decision, to do everything within his power to stop the enemy. Meyer asked Staff Sergeant Juan Rodriguez to drive the Humvee, while he manned the gun. All while enemy fire was whizzing past his head, Meyer came to save the day.  He went back five times for his brothers. A few didn’t make it, but he saved 36 of them. Not to mention, the third time he went back he was doing the rescuing with shrapnel in his arm.

7. Army Medic Desmond Doss

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While the majority of our heroes thus far fit the Captain America mold, Doss is a little different. When Doss joined the military during World War II, he refused to carry a rifle during basic training due to his strong religious beliefs, so he carried a Bible instead.

In boot camp, Doss was extremely unpopular due to such exemptions as not pulling KP on the Sabbath of Saturday, and one fellow soldier even told him, “When we go into combat, Doss, I’m gonna shoot you myself.”

Doss served in the Pacific theater and what he did on the island of Okinawa is nothing short of a miracle. Doss and his company were severely outgunned and outnumbered by the advancing Japanese. As his brothers were dying by his side, it looked like it might be the end for Doss.

However, in a moment of inspiration Doss remembered his training back home and the way he had saved flood victims. He used a rope and a stump, and for five hours lowered the wounded down a cliff while bullets were flying by him.

When all was said and done, Doss saved 75 of his brothers. He said of his remarkable feat, “What I did was a service of love.”

8. Lieutenant Michael Murphy

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Image credit: Navy.mil

Chances are you’ve heard the name Michael Murphy before, because of the Hollywood blockbuster Lone Survivor. Murphy was a Navy SEAL and a man of the highest caliber.

In 2005, Murphy and his SEAL team were on a reconnaissance mission in Afghanistan, when they were spotted by some local villagers. The villagers reported their encounter to the Taliban. Next, Murphy and his team were being pursued by 50 fighters. Everyone on Murphy’s team had been shot, and there wasn’t an area to signal for help unless you exposed yourself to the enemy.

Caring more about the lives of his brothers then his own, Murphy went out into the open and managed to get a call in to Bagram Air Base. He was shot several times by the Taliban while doing so, but the call for help was received. Oh, by the way, the Taliban force experienced thirty five casualties of its own.

Only one person survived in Murphy’s team – Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell – but it was Murphy’s sacrifice that led to saving Luttrell’s life.

Talk about going above and beyond the call of duty. Their unparalleled bravery and selfless sacrifice will never be forgotten.

More Violence in Ferguson, Missouri: Police Officer Shot and Suspect Still at Large

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Multiple news sources are reporting that a police officer was shot in Ferguson, Missouri, on Saturday evening while chasing a suspect.

According to a St. Louis County spokesperson, the officer was shot in the arm while at the Ferguson Community Center checking on the building. According to reports, the center was not in the proximity of the recent unrest that has gripped the area.

As of now, police have not released the name of the officer. They said that he is recovering at a local hospital, and made no further comment. The suspect remains at large and a manhunt is currently underway.

Since the shooting of Michael Brown on August 9th, protests and demonstrations have been ongoing. A county grand jury is considering whether or not to indict Darren Wilson, the officer who shot Brown.

Also, the Justice Department is investigating whether or not Brown’s civil rights were violated. The D.O.J. is also conducting a broader investigation into the Ferguson police after accusations of racism.

The latest controversy in the town was that police officers were wearing bracelets supporting Wilson reading “I am Darren Wilson.” Residents complained to federal officials, and an official request that the practice be banned was made to the Ferguson police chief.

Whether This Supercut of Eric Holder Shows His Best Moments Or His Worst Depends On Who You Ask

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This video, via the Washington Free Beacon and HotAir, gives an interesting snapshot of the highlights of Eric Holder’s career as Attorney General.

Holder’s time as AG was mired by controversies including the Fast & Furious guns scandal, his contempt citation, suing for race-based hiring quotas in police and fire departments, ignoring the New Black Panther’s election intimidation and more.

On the other hand, unlike Nixon’s AG John Mitchell, Holder hasn’t spent any time in prison.

As far as the running of the legal team at the Department of Justice goes, he has been incredibly consistent: Holder’s lost every single case the DOJ has argued before the Supreme Court, many of of them unanimously.

These include areas of law such as criminal procedure, religious freedom, property rights, and securities laws. That’s a record unequaled in the country’s history.

For those who support the perspective of the Obama administration and its approach to governing and jurisprudence, his tenure has been a success. But others, such as House Oversight Committee Chair Darrell Issa, argue that Holder’s tenure as AG created more controversies than it solved.

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Why’d Detroit Go Bankrupt? ‘Wealthier & Whiter Americans,’ Of Course, Says Former Clinton Secretary

Last week, former Labor Secretary under Bill Clinton Robert Reich wrote an op/ed for the Detroit Free Press explaining why Detroit filed bankruptcy, making it the largest city in the country ever to do so. Reich lays the blame on “wealthier and whiter Americans.”

The city filed bankruptcy last summer, citing meager revenues and an overwhelming debt. Once the fourth-largest city in the country, and at one time with the highest per-capita income of any major city, Detroit has become battered over the last few decades.

Earlier this month, the bankruptcy trial began, with a plan to cut over $7 billion in liabilities as city services are starved for revenues.

Enter Robert Reich.

He points out that neighboring Oakland County, one of the wealthiest, large counties in the country, is mostly white and immune from the consequences of the city’s financial travails.

Mentioning a “flight” to the suburbs decades ago, Reich implies that wealthy people abandoned the city, stranding the poor. He also suggests that “had the official boundary been drawn differently” to include some of Oakland County in the city, that the more affluent would be in part financially responsible. He concludes with the following:

Buried within the bankruptcy of Detroit is a fundamental political and moral question: Who are “we,” and what are our obligations to one another?

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Are Detroit, its public employees, poor residents and bondholders the only ones who should sacrifice when Detroit proper can’t pay its bills? Or does the relevant sphere of responsibility include Detroit’s affluent suburbs — to which many of the city’s wealthier residents fled as the city declined, along with the banks that serve them?

An interesting question, to be sure, but one that neglects to address a more fundamental question: Did the city’s decline and subsequent abandonment by many happen in a vacuum? No, it did not.

The last election of a Republican as mayor of Detroit happened in 1957. Since 1950, only one Republican has sat on the city council. In other words, the decline of the city has been entirely in the hands of one political party.

Unopposed by competing political interests, Detroit has literally been a petri dish for an experiment of 50-plus years of one party rule. Reich describes the “fleeing” that occurred in terms of the city having merely “lost” its population.

Another way to describe it: people began voting with their feet, when voting with their ballot was yielding unsatisfactory results.

Despite Reich’s wish to assign financial responsibility to those who had no electoral influence over the decision makers that ran the city for decades, shouldn’t the residents bear the consequences for the policies their elected officials put in place?

When Knight Rider Swings by to Pick Up a Mega-Fan with Down Syndrome, It’s the Joyride of a Lifetime

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Don’t worry — David Hasselhoff speaks in English, so just wait for it. It’s worth it.

Twan Vermeulan, a young man with Down Syndrome from the Netherlands, recently had his dream come true when he met his favorite star, David Hasselhoff.

But there’s more: Twan and Hasselhoff went for a ride together in Kitt the Car from the series “Knight Rider.”

Syndroom, the Dutch foundation that helped Twan’s dream come true, is dedicated to “helping people with Down syndrome, autistic disorders and other syndromes” fulfill “their ambitions, dreams and fantasies.”

It was a dream come true for Twan, but the adventure also touched Hasselhoff deeply. Hasselhoff tells Twan on the car ride, “You made my day.” And upon their goodbyes, Twan expresses that both Kitt the Car and Hasselhoff are his friends. Hasselhoff is so touched, he has to wipe a tear from his eye.

A very touching video. It’s great to see situations where the joy of making another person’s dream come true is a pleasure for the giver as well.

She Set Off to Go to a Marketing Job, But a Man She Believed Was 5,437 Miles Away Changes Her Life

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Susan thought she was getting ready for a marketing event when she heard the voices of an a capella group singing “Seasons of Love” from the musical ‘Rent.’

Much to her surprise they circled around her, along with some loved ones.

Then Omar, her boyfriend she thought was in London, joined the crowd. Even though the group told Susan she was about to get engaged through song, she really couldn’t quite believe the moment was happening.

Omar began with these heartfelt words:

“I’ve traveled 5,437 miles to stand before you today, but I would travel to the ends of the earth to be with you… You are the most beautiful, thoughtful, inspiring woman I have know and ever will know…”

Susan gave a very enthusiastic “Yes!” Followed by some “Are you kidding me?!!”

If We Had the Same Laws as Other Nations, More Than 1 American May Have Been Beheaded This Week

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When Alton Nolen started his rampage Thursday at his former workplace, Vaughan Foods, he did so with an often overlooked weapon – a knife. But he was stopped in the same manner that most bad guys are stopped:

By a good guy with a gun.

In addition to being the COO of Vaughan Foods, Mark Vaughan is a reserve deputy with the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office. When Alton Nolen attacked two women in the front office, Vaughan shot him. Breitbart reports:

“Mark put an end to the threat by shooting the suspect and saving the life of a second victim who was being actively attacked by the suspect,” Oklahoma County Sheriff John Whetsel said in a statement.

 

“There is every reason to believe that the lives of untold others were saved who would have been targeted by the suspect if it hadn’t been for Deputy Vaughan’s actions.”

Many workplaces classify themselves as gun-free zones, but this episode illustrates that when used by law-abiding, trained citizens, guns can save lives.

Community Takes a Leap Through Time to Help Terminally Ill Father Complete His Bucket List

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For one community in Shoreline, Washington, Christmas has come early.

This will be the last Christmas for neighbor Frank Henderson, who was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer and given only days or weeks to live.

The surprise diagnosis came as a shock to Frank and to his family, but he immediately set to work making sure his family would be taken care of once he passed away, KOMO News reports.

The list of chores and improvements he wanted to make to the family home turned into a “bucket list” of things he wanted to experience with his family in the time that he had.

He gave away his daughter in a ceremony symbolizing a future wedding.

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Image Credit: KOMO News

With his family surrounding him, he watched his favorite team, the Seattle Seahawks, beat their rivals, the Denver Broncos.

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Image Credit: KOMO News

And the Hendersons are hosting an early Christmas – Frank’s favorite holiday.

KOMO News

Image Credit: KOMO News

In a show of solidarity, his neighbors set up lights and Christmas decorations too, to make the neighborhood look like it was truly Christmastime. Some neighborhood kids brought over some snow that they had been saving in their freezer since winter.

In the face of it all, Frank has had a smile on his face. He wants to enjoy the time he has left with his family. After all, he says, he knows where he’s going.

“It’s kinda surreal,” he explained in halting cadence as he labors to breathe. “We all sit around and hold each others’ hands and cry. We hug each other and we know it’s going to happen.

 

But if I was, I think, if I was mad, then that would change everybody’s position. But God didn’t do this to me, and He’s not punishing me or anything. It’s just a fact.

 

And He wants people to be examples, of loving other people and then letting them share. Because people need to share.”

Our thoughts and prayers are with the Henderson family and the Shoreline community.

Rhode Island Governor Candidate Takes Unexpected Measures To ‘Light Up’ Her Campaign

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Rhode Island Governor candidate Anne Armstrong is a trailblazer, literally, when it came to her political ad – she smokes weed during her campaign video.

The write-in gubernatorial candidate based her ad on changing what she considers the stigmas associated with marijuana use.

We’ve been lied to a long time by our government. And something that’s been essential to our health has been taken away from us. Thats why people get sick with cancer, that why they get sick with a lot of chronic degenerative diseases because they have been deprived of cannabinoids.”

As a dispenser and patient herself, Armstrong states that marijuana use can help people and that it is nothing to be ashamed of.

As a wrap up to her argument, Armstong walks the walk by closing up the video – and blazing up.

 

What’s a Surefire Way to See How Much Your Online Date Actually Cares About Looks? Try Doing This.

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If you’re not familiar with Tinder, it is one of the many dating sites that are taking the world by storm.

The point of these sites (as you all probably know) is to find someone you share similar qualities with and/or find attractive and meet up with them for a date, often in hopes that a relationship will blossom.

It’s no secret that on dating sites, people often use the most flattering photo of themselves as their profile picture. The problem is that this can lead to unmet expectations when those people and their dates meet face to face.

This video, created by Simple Pickup, forces men to face their fears when they are matched up with someone who looks a little different in real life than what they were expecting and renders the question: Are they shallow jerks, or were their actions somehow justified?

Simple Pickup did this same experiment with a man dressed in a fat suit, and the woman didn’t seem too pleased either. But at least they didn’t say they were going to the bathroom and never come back.

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College Responds to Sexual Assault With Rule That Totally Changes What It Means to Be a Frat ‘Bro’

Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, announced that it will be requiring all residential fraternities to “become fully co-educational over the next three years.”

In an email delivered to the entire school community, university officials stated that the “change is something that Wesleyan and the fraternities have been contemplating for many years, and now the time has come.”

Indeed, this move comes following a number of recent events on campus that forced the university’s Board of Trustees to seek a plan addressing the role, if any, residential fraternities will have in the future of the school:

  • In what was only the latest in a series of events, university officials decided to permanently close one fraternity house earlier this month, after a female student was seriously injured following a fall from a third floor window during a party.
  • This same fraternity house was labeled a “rape factory” during a 2010 sexual assault investigation, in which the school was also accused of negligence.
  • Following a separate occurrence of alleged sexual assault in May 2013, University President Michael S. Roth proclaimed that “[w]e need to focus our attention on improving the safety of these spaces.”

Finally, there were the undeniable results of this student-led survey conducted in April 2014. Forty-seven percent of Wesleyan students responded that they felt “less safe” in fraternity spaces than in other party spaces:

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56% of those surveyed indicated their belief that coeducation would help to improve campus life overall:

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This information, coupled with an additional outpouring of support from both students and faculty, led Wesleyan to join a handful of other New England liberal arts colleges that prohibit single-gender fraternities.

The national office of Delta Kappa Epsilon, one of the two affected fraternities at Wesleyan, released this statement regarding the decision, with excerpts below:

“The statement from President Roth does not mention a single specific problem that this decision is intended to resolve, not to mention how or why this step would resolve such problem(s). We believe this statement insults the intelligence of Wesleyan’s students, alumni, and other constituencies, who deserve more than vague references to “equity” and “inclusion” when explaining why the University feels it must break a 150-year old tradition, one that, as the statement says, has “contributed greatly to Wesleyan over a long period of time.”

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“Remarkably absent from the University’s statement are any facts – even opinions – about why Wesleyan feels it will be better off with coeducational fraternities. How can a highly-rated liberal arts institution implement a major policy change, without even describing to those affected by it, the problem that you are intending to solve?”

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“We see no evidence of a rigorous, fact-based analysis of the situation – an approach one would think that Wesleyan University would embrace.”

Although the school’s plan of action may seem ridiculous to some, you have to give credit to the students for banding together to ensure their voices were heard to combat a serious problem involving their campus culture.

One can only hope their solution doesn’t cause more of the same problems it aims to prevent.

Football Player Rescues Bullied Kid, Earns Hero Status from Classmates and a Suspension From School.

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When Elmwood Park High School football player Mark Rivera saw a smaller student being bullied, he did what any honorable young man with morals would do: He tried to help.

Reportedly, Rivera sat the bully down and had a conversation with him, then walked away.

But when the bully “made some comments,” Rivera turned back around and took a step forward. This was deemed as physically assaultive and resulted in his suspension.  Mark’s parents support his actions and are disappointed with the school’s decision.

CBS Chicago interviewed the high schooler, who said:

It’s a really small community so I really couldn’t stand for seeing someone bullied in a community so small.

According to CBS Chicago, Elmwood Park principal James Jennings wouldn’t comment on the specific case of Mark Rivera’s suspension. But he did have this to say:

Some students have good intentions of helping others but the way they go about it can become a problem if it involves threats and can escalate an incident.

Mark is being hailed as a hero by fellow students who applaud his actions. This makes one wonder, if Mark’s response was wrong, what is the appropriate action a student should take when encountering bullying? Principal Jennings says:

You can say “stop it” or “leave him alone,” but if that doesn’t work, get an adult involved.

However, there is some good news to report: CBS Chicago states that since Mark’s return from suspension, the student he aided is no longer being picked on.

Dept of Labor Video About Gov’t-Mandated Paid Maternity Leave Forgets to Present Both Sides

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The Department of Labor just put up a video called “It’s Time To Lead on Paid Leave.” From the description on the video’s YouTube site:

Did you know? The U.S. is the only industrialized nation without any paid family leave law. With the changing nature of our 21st-century workforce, it’s getting harder and harder to balance the demands of the family you love and the job you need.

 

Change has yet to come to Washington, but momentum is growing in the states: So far, California, Rhode Island and New Jersey have passed paid leave laws. It’s time to update workplace policies that are stuck in the past and give more Americans paid family leave – to take care of sick loved ones and newborn children.

Then they also have a link at the bottom to the Department of Labor’s “paid leave” site, which has stories, position statements, economic reports, and other such things.

But there’s one thing that’s missing: any opposite perspective at all.

Obviously, in any decision there are trade-offs. Neither the video nor the website from the Labor Department make mention of this. As paid leave has a cost, those costs must be paid by someone. And that’s the trade-off made.

Although few might be opposed to the general idea of paid leave, someone has to pay for it.

A position opposite of the one the Labor Department is promoting might argue that a great country would allow businesses to freely offer the types of benefits they think will be important to attract and retain the workers they most want; workers can then choose between them.

Right now, unpaid maternity leave, but not paid leave, is legally required of employers.

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Sarah Palin Shows How to Turn a Gaffe Into a Punchline After Mocking Obama’s Coffee Cup Salute

President Obama received some harsh criticism after giving a Marine an improper salute while holding a cup of coffee in his right hand last Wednesday.

Sarah Palin, in her usual energetic fashion, made fun of Obama’s salute during the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C., saying:

“To the Commander in Chief, we then will salute him.”

As Palin continued to bash on the President, she made her own flub after getting the address wrong for the White House.

Palin commented that the White House was at 1400 Pennsylvania Ave, when the actual address is 1600 Pennsylvania Ave:

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Photo credit: googlemaps

After realizing her mistake, she recovered quite well:

She even went to 1400 Pennsylvania Ave to confirm the White House is in fact not at that address.

It’s always nice to see someone who isn’t afraid to own up to their mistakes – and have a little fun while doing so.

How Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s Rival Replied To Serious Accusation May Have Secured Him The Race

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As the race for Wisconsin governor intensifies, Governor Scott Walker may have just been handed his next term on a silver platter.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports:

Democratic candidate for governor Mary Burke stumbled Thursday when asked to define plagiarism and said she had not violated her principles with a jobs plan that includes nearly word-for-word sections that also appear in other candidates’ plans.

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Asked by reporters to define plagiarism, Burke said: “This, this probably, using words, exact words, from a source that doesn’t, that isn’t cited and isn’t attributable.”

Many were appalled that Burke was unable to clearly answer the question. This Twitter user thought Burke was deserving of an award.

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After this Wisconsin senator watched the video, she was concerned that Burke didn’t seem to care about the allegations.

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And this user wanted to help clear up what plagiarism is by linking Burke to a lesson on the subject.

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Others felt that the entire situation was overblown. The Daily Kos stated:

But before Republicans get too excited, I think a little perspective is in order. First, Mary Burke didn’t write the individual words, word-by-word, of her jobs plan, any more than Scott Walker wrote his.

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Campaign consultants, consulting firms, and staff are employed to do this sort of thing — put the candidate’s ideas into text (and, doubtless in some cases, come up with something entirely). And sometimes those staff take unethical shortcuts. As is the case here, where consultant Eric Schnurer authored the jobs plan — and self-plagiarized his own writing from other Democrats’ job plans.

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Is this acceptable? No, of course not. But let’s be very clear: Mary Burke didn’t sit down, pour through Schnurer’s work, and select passages to lift. That was a decision made by Schnurer, and almost certainly (considering what a needless political liability it would be) without Burke’s knowledge.

While plagiarism rarely turns into a criminal charge, evidence – and even accusations – of plagiarism tend to destroy your credibility in the eyes of voters.

The numbers speak for themselves: Walker and Burke were formerly in a dead heat for the governor’s seat, but since Burke’s flub, Walker has shot ahead.

These Kids Might Not Agree on the Weather But We Can All Agree This is the Cutest Argument Ever

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A conversation about the weather has never been more entertaining.

It’s rainin!

 

No… my mom told me it was sprinklin’.

 

Raining, sprinkling… Imagine the conversation if a parent had told them it’s raining cats and dogs!

Thankfully, one of the children is a natural-born mediator, with a strong ability to defuse the situation. When things get heated, she’s there to make sure her sister apologizes for escalating the argument while also making sure her buddy’s feelings aren’t too badly hurt.

Especially his heart…

Drivers’ Response To Shutdown On Turnpike Adds New Meaning To The Words ‘Traffic Jam’

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The way drivers responded to the shutting down of a turnpike is giving a whole new meaning to the words “traffic jam.”

ABC News reports:

A group of motorists stuck in seemingly never-ending traffic on a Pennsylvania highway turned their traffic jam into a music jam session after two musicians pulled out their steel drums right on the highway.

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Meteorologist Justin Berk, of Baltimore, was one of the drivers stuck in the nearly hour-long traffic standstill on Saturday just outside of King of Prussia.

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Berk wrote on his blog that around 30 minutes into the traffic jam, he learned that two of his fellow motorists were the members of a steel drums group worried they might miss their next performance.

Then, the band members put on a festive show which lasted until the turnpike was reopened.

I can’t think of a better way to help fellow commuters channel their stress about trying to get somewhere into something positive.

What Two Young Boys Kill an Elderly Man on the Street For Makes This Tragedy Even More Appalling

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Recent footage captured two young brothers from Belgrade, Serbia, brutally attacking an 80-year-old pensioner who later died due to injuries, according to Mirror.uk.

Predrag Jovic, 10, and Slavoljub, 11, were captured on CCTV cornering Stjepan Hrvatin, an elderly man in an underground garage, who they then began pushing around while stealing his shopping bag and money.

The frail man attempted to fight back and tried to follow the boys, but they retaliated in an even more inhumane fashion by kicking and punching him until he fell to the ground.

After the victim laid on the ground, the attackers ran off with 3 euros – that’s about $3.81 – in stolen cash. Hrvatin was able to muster up enough strength to make it back to his apartment, but later died later from his injuries.

Hrvatin’s neighbors were outraged after hearing about his death. Tamara Poljak, 45, one of the people who lived in Hrvatin’s building, was appalled to hear what happened:

“Stjepan was a lovely man who wouldn’t give a second thought to helping others. He was a dear, sweet man and this abhorrent act is incomprehensible.”

Stojan Kaksic, 36, another one of Hrvatin’s neighbors, said:

“Those two boys should rot in hell for this.”

Under Serbian law, the two boys are unable to go to jail due to their young age, according to police. Police confirmed that Predrag and Slavoljub also attacked a pregnant woman and stole jewelry.

Even though these brothers may not be eligible for jail, one can only hope they receive the punishment they deserve and learn from their horrific mistakes.

DHS Secretary: ‘A Path To Citizenship’ Just Might Cause Terrorists To Subject To Background Checks

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Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson has an interesting theory: if the U.S. were to implement “path to citizenship” immigration “reform,” would-be terrorists might then come forward and subject themselves to background checks.

Speaking before a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on Wednesday, Johnson said:

“From my homeland security perspective, I want people who are living in this country undocumented (illegally) to come forward, to get on the books, and subject themselves to a background check so that I can know who they are.

 

From my homeland security perspective, I want people to come forward.”

An incredulous Rep. Lou Barletta (R-PA) was dumbfounded:

“Do we honestly believe that any would-be terrorist or criminal or drug dealer is going to come forward to have a criminal background check done on them? They’re going to continue to remain underground.

 

Nobody with a criminal record is going to come forward.”

The Congressman then asked Johnson to assure Americans that terrorists wouldn’t take advantage of the “path to citizenship.”

“President Obama has told the American people and potential terrorists that he plans to grant some form of administrative amnesty to potentially millions of those currently in the country unlawfully.

 

How will you assure the American people that [terrorists] will not slip through the cracks?”

Johnson’s response was even more incredible than his first answer:

“Congressman, I am very focused on knowing as much as we can about individuals who are undocumented in this country.

 

And I believe that if an earned pathway to citizenship were to become law, that would encourage people to come forward and submit to a background check so they can get on the books.

Assuming a terrorist – or multiple terrorists – enter the U.S. via Mexico, is it realistic to assume that granting “a path to citizenship” is going to motivate them to submit to background checks? Are they really interested in “getting on the books”?

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Why Does Bacon Smell So Insanely Delicious? Apparently, It’s Not Magic.

Bacon is the breakfast of champions. Few aromas are as enticing or as welcomed as the smell of bacon wafting through your home on a crisp fall morning.

But why? What is it about bacon that makes the smell so irresistible? Well, the infographic below, courtesy of Compound Interest, has the answer:

Aroma-Chemistry-Bacon

So for all you bacon enthusiasts who have ever wondered why you can’t get enough of your favorite food’s appetizing scent, you’ve finally got your answer. It’s science.

Ever See A Guy Intentionally Break A Windshield With His Face? Here’s Your Chance.

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Okay, so why would a man jump on the hood of a moving car and bash his head on the windshield – several times, until he breaks it (the windshield, not his head)?

Speculation is he was an “insurance scammer” attempting to collect money from an insurance company or the driver as a result of the “accident.” The man was unhurt.

In the video, posted by LiveLeak, the South Korean man can be seen rushing the car and doing a swan dive onto the hood as the car’s occupants scream. What a tough way to make a living, huh?