Tuesday, December 19, 2017


Carolina Panthers will be for sale at the end of the season amid “allegations of workplace misconduct”

The NFL said Sunday (12/17) it would take over the investigation into those claims. The news comes amid a wave of sexual harassment accusations rocking Hollywood, media, and politics; just last week, the NFL Network suspended employees named in such a lawsuit. The sale by the Panthers’ founding owner will be the first in the NFL since 2014, when the Buffalo Bills were sold for $1.4 billion. (New York Times)


Controversial Restaurant Sign Sparks Criticism, After Allegations of “Racism”

A restaurant in Texas is defending itself against racism allegations after hanging a sign that uses a derogatory term for African Americans and depicts a blackface caricature. The sign, which features cartoonish blackface with “Coon Chicken Inn” printed on the grinning teeth, has made the rounds on social media with many calling it “racist” and “infuriating.” Cook’s Garage in Lubbock, Texas, claims the controversial sign is “part of history”. The restaurant, which reportedly features other vintage signs as part of the aesthetic, denied any racist intent. “The Coon Chicken Inn was an actual restaurant started in the 20’s. Again, we want to stress we do not intend to offend anyone, and are only preserving a part of history that should remind us all of the senselessness of racial prejudice.” (Everything Lubbock)


A mom of two handcrafts beautiful Christmas ornaments — by mixing glitter with her own powdered placenta

Jordan Harrison, 29, keeps her 3-year-old son Ezra’s dehydrated afterbirth, which has been ground into powder, in her freezer. She then mixes the granules with glitter and paints blank ornaments with the result to create an unusual festive decoration. Harrison, from Michigan, Ill. also makes her placenta into chocolate treats so she can eat it as well as mixing into soups and smoothies. She also takes it in capsule form, swearing by its mood-boosting properties and even insisting it helps ease period pain. The mom was initially skeptical when she heard that stars like Kim Kardashian and actress January Jones have eaten their placenta. To create the unusual chocolates — which she now makes for other moms — Harrison mixes the powdered placenta with cocoa, coconut oil and either honey or sugar, before shaping and leaving to set. Keen to help other women, Harrison eventually decided to become a full-time doula, supporting moms during and after their pregnancies. As well as attending both hospital and home births, she has also trained to process placentas, which she does at home. Not only can she put them into capsules, but she also provides mothers with prints of them and can even turn them into jewelry, by setting some of the ground powder in crystal. (NY Post)


People who argue with you about cellphone radiation may not actually be so crazy!

The California Department of Public Health has released its first cellphone-use guidelines, warning that the devices could be hazardous due to their leaking radiation. “Although the science is still evolving, there are concerns among some public health professionals and members of the public regarding long-term, high use exposure to the energy emitted by cell phones,” says CDPH director Karen Smith in the guidelines. “We know that simple steps, such as not keeping your phone in your pocket and moving it away from your bed at night, can help reduce exposure for both children and adults.” That’ll be hard for many of us: According to the CDPH, about 95 percent of Americans own a cellphone, and 12 percent rely on them every day for internet access. Meanwhile, it’s now common for kids as young as 10 years old to have their own phone, and for young people to keep their devices on their person for most of the day and while they sleep. Smith says children may be more vulnerable to cellphones’ possible effects since their brains are still developing. Here are some of the other steps CDPH recommends to reduce exposure to cell phone radio frequency energy:

  • Keep your the phone away from your body.
  • Reduce cell phone use when the signal is weak.
  • Avoid using cell phones to stream audio or video, or to download or upload large files.
  • Keep your phone away from the bed at night.
  • Remove headsets when not on a call.
  • Avoid products that claim to block radio frequency energy — they could actually increase your exposure.

(California Department of Public Health)


Federal appeals judge announces immediate retirement amid probe of sexual misconduct allegations

Federal appeals court Judge Alex Kozinski announced his retirement amid a judicial investigation into allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior. The Ninth Circuit judge allegedly harassed 15 women, including clerks in his employ. Through his lawyer, Kozinski said: “It grieves me to learn that I caused any of my clerks to feel uncomfortable; this was never my intent.” (Washington Post)


More people choosing Uber for a hospital ride over an ambulance: study

More people appear to be choosing to use an Uber for rides to the hospital over an ambulance, a recent study has found. Two professors looked at data from places across America. David Slusky, an assistant professor of economics at the University of Kansas, along with co-author Leon Moskatel, examined ambulance rates in more than 750 U.S. cities nationwide. The data looked at ambulance usage rates since Uber was introduced in those markets between the years 2013 and 2015. The data, according to the study, appeared to show that ambulance usage rates had declined by at least 7 percent in those markets. “Many patients don’t need something that can break traffic laws and don’t need something staffed by paramedics with a bunch of fancy equipment,” Slusky said. The San Jose Mercury News reports that Moskatel had to map all the dates Uber entered a certain market, based on the company’s public announcements. The ambulance rates were obtained from the National Emergency Medical Service Information System. (University of Kansas)


U.S. military sets record in ‘war against terrorists’

A B-52 Stratofortress, a long-range strategic bomber, just set a record for the number of “smart bombs” dropped during a combat mission. Smart bombs use GPS to guide missiles to their targets. It happened during a November mission in Afghanistan while the bomber was stationed at the Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar. During the first night of an expanded strike mission against the Taliban’s revenue stream, B-52s released 19 Joint Direct Attack Munitions, or JDAMS, against multiple targets, Air Forces Central Command spokeswoman Capt. AnnMarie Annicelli. “The first munitions released in combat from the [conventional rotary launcher] occurred on November 18th in support of Operation Inherent Resolve (Iraq),” Annicelli said. “However, this was the first use of the CRL in a major, deliberately planned operation.” The operation took place in Helmand Province against narcotics facilities and an IED storage facility, she said. B-52 can carry more smart bombs with the conventional rotary launcher. In all, B-52s have dropped about 1,500 weapons in Afghanistan since January 2017. About half of them were not guided. The B-52 can carry “about 70,000 pounds of mixed ordnance, including bombs, mines and missiles”. Reports credit “more independence and authority under the Trump administration” as the reason the U.S. military is using more advanced technologies in the war. This includes “the largest conventional bomb” and the F-22 Raptor stealth fighter. (The Blaze)


Tuesday shows us it’s:

*National Hard Candy Day
*National Oatmeal Muffin Day

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