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US Customs officers on trial for ‘rape table’

in Career & Retirement by

“Rape table” at Terminal C in Newark Airport is a major crime scene in a federal court case involving three U.S. customs officers, Tito Catota, 38, Parmenio Perez, 40, and Michael Papagni, 32, all of New Jersey, were arrested in September and are on trial for sexual assault involving a hazing ritual simulating sex upon other Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officers.

Assaults described as entering a room where lights were turned off as others groped and help individuals down in a simulated sex act that happened to both male and female CBP officers. One woman recounts a gun being placed to her head. Complaints filed show assaults happened for years.

Now, if this happened to officers, what do they do to passengers?

Southern California county fights wildfire

in Crisis & Natural Disasters by

Southern California wildfires rage through Ventura County, searing 50,000 acres.

In early fall, northern California burned leaving billions of dollars in damage. With 17 fires igniting in 24 hours, the state pulled firefighters throughout the state, and even enlisted the help of incarcerated women and men who were paid $1 a day.

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Bottoms up: Keisha Lance Bottoms wins as Atlanta’s next mayor

in Politics & Social Justice by

A hair-splitting win by Democrat, Keisha Lance Bottoms in the Atlanta mayoral race, but opponent Mary Norwood, an Independent says, “It’s not over yet.”

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Intelligent hoodlum, pt. 1

in Arts & Culture by
The Intelligent Hoodlum relates to the streets
Cause the past stays on my back to remind me
Intelligence is what you gain when you find me…
          —Intelligent Hoodlum (aka Tragedy Khadafi), Intelligent Hoodlum (1990)

Orange moons in Sicily

in Agriculture & Urban Farming by

Agriculture, and in particular, organic production of grapes, almonds, and durum wheat (the base for pasta) are the core of Sicily’s farming, but you cannot experience the Mediterranean culture on your palate until you eat an orange.

Located in southern Italy along with surrounding minor islands, it has a year-round mild climate. Because of the mild climate, Sicily can grow citrus fruits 10 months out of the year. With that, Regione Siciliana produces 50 percent of the island’s fruit.

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The pain, power, and price of protest: on athletes & activism, part 1

in Feature/Politics & Social Justice by

Forty-five years and twenty-one days ago, my father sat embarrassed and afraid on his mother-in-law’s couch in Lafayette, La.

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Chestnuts, a Portuguese street food

in Culinary Traditions & Food Ways/Food & Drink by

“Chestnuts roasting on an open fire …” are far from a dreamy, magical romantic Christmas night. In Portugal, chestnuts are a staple.

Roasted chestnuts are popular street food sold around November, when Dia de São Martinho (St. Martin’s Day) is celebrated across the country on November 11th. Traditionally, newly harvested chestnuts are eaten around a bonfire that date and the treat is eaten during the autumn season.

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A booty call by US Senate

in Market & Currency/Politics & Social Justice by

Sometime between last call for alcohol and BET’s Uncut, the majority #Republican Senate voted in a tax bill that will overhaul current tax codes.

While the GOP says that the new tax codes would be economically beneficial, congressional analysis reveals that it would add $1 trillion dollars in debt. Democrats on tax committees complained that details of changes have been left out. With only providing a draft of the tax bill to lawmakers a few hours before casting ballots, Democrats are flummoxed.

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Feminist, indigenous woman runs for president of Mexico

in Latin America/Politics & Social Justice by

Indigenous political candidates in Mexico emerge to change corruption in government and electoral process. Marla de Jesus Patricio Martinez, who goes by Marichuy, travels the country seeking support from indigenous communities to run for office in 2018.

Her popularity rises as she holds a platform celebrating working class and poor indigenous people, a population Marichuy says are underrepresented in electoral politics; and often an institution excluding their participation.

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Conyers contemplates resignation

in Politics & Social Justice by

Days after US Congressman John Conyers (D-MI) stepped down as ranking member of House Judiciary Committee amid a congressional investigation, he released a statement via his attorney saying that he will announce his future in politics due to health concerns.

The move follows Nancy Pelosi and other high ranking Democrats and Republicans asking him to step down from recent allegations from former aides of sexual misconduct. Additionally, it came out that he misused office funds to pay for a monetary settlement from a complaint of a former female staffer.

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