Central Park 5

central5

Friday April 19th 2013 marked the 24th anniversary of the Central Park 5 case. Although the case was given massive media attention back in 1989, there were few if any news stories dedicated to it on the 19th. While it was a busy news week with the tragedies in Boston and the search for the perpetrators, it seems like the same media that fueled the injustice of the CP5 case, could have at least acknowledge it with perhaps even the shortest sentence.

For those unfamiliar with the case, it involved five teenage black and latino boys being accused of the brutal attack and rape of a young white woman in Central Park. The boys were assumed guilty from the very beginning and due to unethical interrogation by the NYD and their vilification by the media, they were wrongfully convicted. Years later the true culprit confessed to the crime, however, the boys had already served about five years each, with one serving as much as 15 years.

With the truth finally revealed, one would assume that there would have been an apology or simply an acknowledgement of the wrong that was committed. However, the reaction was completely opposite. The NYPD conducted an internal review and deemed that they’d done nothing wrong, the lead prosecutor released a statement claiming that the boys most have worked with the true culprit, and for the last ten years, the city of NY has refused to settle the CP5’s wrongfully imprisonment lawsuit.

Let’s get it straight, nothing can ever erase what happened. No amount of money will ever give those boys, now grown men, their childhoods back and nothing can take away those years of imprisonment for a crime they did not commit. But, for those parties involved to behave in this way, showing no remorse or even the slightest sign that acknowledges their mistake, they have revealed who the true monsters were all along.

Below is a documentary about the case.

For more information visit:http://www.pbs.org/kenburns/centralparkfive/

To sign the petition visit:http://www.change.org/petitions/mayor-michael-r-bloomberg-the-central-park-5-seeks-economic-justice#

IGAD

Watch The Central Park Five on PBS. See more from Central Park Five.

Gosnell

abort dr

Dr. Kermit Gosnell is a person that will soon be infamous, but currently most people have never heard of him.

Gosnell is the former head of two women’s clinics in West Philadelphia, clinics that are now being described as horror houses.

Between 1972 and 2011, he and his staff of mostly untrained medical professionals operated a cash payment only clinic. And although he committed countless atrocities throughout the years, the Philadelphia Public Health Department failed to shut down or even visit his clinic. In fact, local police were investigating his involvement in an illegal drug operation, when they discovered far greater evils.

It was revealed that in addition to issuing illegal drug prescriptions, Gosnell was performing gruesome late term abortions, and a few of his patients had actually died during their visit to the clinic.

As Gosnell now sits on trial there is a lot of finger pointing among staff and public officials, and of course many questions are being raised.

When addressing the biggest question, “how was this allowed to happen?”, the grand jury had this to say: “We think the reason no one acted is because the women in question were poor and of color, because the victims were infants without identities, and because the subject was the political football of abortion”.

The aptly titled “political football” is now being passed back and forth as right wing pundits, such as Fox News, shout of a cover up by the mainstream media*. On the other hand, the liberal media outlets are now scrambling to be the main source of coverage for a story that should have been spotlighted and thoroughly covered, by both sides, from the very beginning.

As for me, I think that whether you’re pro-choice or anti-abortion, whether you think there was a coverup or not, we should all just focus on the basic truth of this story: A man in Philadelphia, Dr. Kermit Gosnell, murdered a large number of innocent women and children. That’s it, that’s the story. Sure there are other factors but that is what we should hone in on. Let us focus on and start our discussions on that fact.

Although this may not occur, instead of fighting with one another about the decisive factors of the situation, I’d like to see us come together. My hope is that we’ll be able to focus on what’s really important and ensure justice for those who were wronged. While there are other things that will need to be addressed, let’s at least start with that.

“Things start out as hopes and end up as habits.”—Lillian Hellman

IGAD

* I think it’s really dumb when Fox News uses the term “mainstream media” when as of last year they celebrated ten years as the most watched cable news network. In my opinion, You can’t get more mainstream than that. (http://tinyurl.com/foxnewsstats) *

Our New Home

home

In a move that most people saw coming, Facebook recently announced the completion of their own Facebook branded cellphone, the HTC First.

Although the basic look and function of the phone will be comparable to what already exists, Facebook has also given the phone a unique user interface called Home. 

Facebook emphasizes that the Home user interface is not a new app or operating system. It is instead designed to run cohesively with existing Android phone technology. It will live in the space that would traditionally be occupied by a screen lock or a screen saver and basically serve as the gateway to all other functions on one’s phone.

According to Zuckerberg “The homescreen is the soul of your phone.We think it should be deeply personal.”

Home also features a new kind of phone display called Cover Feed and a messaging system called Chatheads.

Although the HTC First comes exclusively loaded with Home, the user interface will be available for most new Android phones on April 12, and on tablets later this year.

Zuckerberg also stated that “More than 20 percent of our time on our phones is spent on Facebook,” said Zuckerberg. “No other activity is close” .

I guess if you think about it though, he’s probably right. So, I’ll just go ahead and say it, “Welcome, Home”.

IGAD

North Korean Conflict

koreas

Did you know that technically North and South Korea have been at war for the past 60 years?
(It’s ok, neither did I)

Apparently, this is because in 1953 at the end of the Korean War, North Korea never officially signed the peace treaty. Unfortunately, in the past fews days N. Korea has decided that even tentative peace is no longer an option.

After receiving U.N. Sanctions for performing nuclear tests and the completion of the annual US-South Korean military exercises, the N. Koreans feel that they’ve been insulted and they’re angry. This anger has led to Saturday’s declaration that North Korea will be entering “a state of war” with South Korea and its allies.

Reports are that on Thursday leader Kim Jong-un decided “the time has come to settle accounts with the US imperialists” and on Saturday the nation issued this statement: “From this time on, the North-South relations will be entering the state of war and all issues raised between the North and the South will be handled accordingly”.

In summation, it’s a tough time right now for South Korea and the rest of the world. And although we ultimately don’t have control of the outcome, the best thing to do in this situation is to pay attention and stay informed.

Hoping for Change, Praying for Peace.

IGAD

The Future of Condoms

condoms

Condoms, we all know them and we each have our opinions of them. They can range from “I can’t stand wearing those rubber straight jackets” to “I can’t stand babies, that’s why I love condoms”. However, we can all probably agree that the little raincoats could use a re-design.

Although they have been around for about 400 years there has been little to no change in their design. In the past materials such as animal skin, bladder, and intestines were used. Lucky for those of us who aren’t big fans of wearing animal parts, eventually the manufactures switched to latex. Unfortunately, that was the last big improvement and there hasn’t been another one for about 50 years.

Sure, cheesy gimmicks like “glow in the dark” or “ribbed for her pleasure” may make one pack stand out over the other, but when it comes down to it, they’re all pretty much the same.

It’s time for a change people.

Fortunately, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation feel the same. They are offering $100,000 (with $1 million in potential funding) to the individual who can perfect the prophylactic, create the condom of choice, and forevermore revolutionize the rubber!

But in all seriousness, with the World Health Organization reporting 1.7 million aids related mortalities in 2011 alone, an improved condom that is cheaper for those in underdeveloped countries or just simply has the incentive of being more comfortable, could save many lives.

So, Let’s hope someone answers the call. Godspeed and Good luck.

IGAD

*For those interested, here’s a video on how condoms are made*

Hostess is Dead: Long Live Hostess

pabst

This past week Metropoulos & Company, owner of the PBR brand, thrilled Twinkie lovers everywhere with the announcement that they will be saving the beloved brand from extinction.

Under the $410 million deal, Metropoulos and Apollo Global Management will acquire Twinkies and other Hostess favorites such as Ding Dongs, Ho Hos, and Sno Balls.

Metropoulos and Apollo Global Management hope that with their past successes resurrecting nostalgia brands such as Pam cooking spray, Chef Boyardee canned pasta, and of course PBR, that they’ll be able to do the same for Hostess.

According to Daren Metropoulos, an executive of the family owned business, “There’s a great consumer fan base that hasn’t declined [and there’s] a real opportunity to revitalize these brands”.

So I guess the next task will be figuring out which Hostess snack goes best with a cold PBR.

IGAD

Get to Know Your Whole Foods GMOs

whole foods

One of the pioneers in healthy U.S. eating, Whole Foods Market, has recently announced that by 2018 GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) labeling will be required at all of it’s U.S. and Canada Stores.

“With cases like horse meat discovered in the U.K., plastic in milk in China, the recalls of almond and peanut butter in the U.S., customers have a fundamental right to know what’s in their food.”—Whole Foods Co-Chief Executive Walter Robb.

So instead of picking up tomatoes that are bigger than your head and wondering if they’re just “really big tomatoes”, if you’re at Whole Foods, your question will be answered. Interestingly, there are more than 60 countries where GMO labeling is already the law of the land. But due to little effort in educating the U.S. population and a tremendous amount of anti-labeling lobbyist, it may be a while before we catch up.

Hopefully, Whole Foods will kick off the GMO labeling revolution, but for now, our best options as consumers are Non-GMO Project verified products and certified organic products.

To learn more about the GMO labeling movement watch the video below and visit JustLabelIt.org.


IGAD