H5N1: Guinea declares viral hemorrhagic fever epidemic

Twenty-nine deaths out of 49 cases is a case fatality rate of 59%. Evidently the minister does not yet have laboratory reports that would tell him what he’s fighting. And the disease is now in Conakry, the capital on the coast, as well as in the southeastern towns of Guéckédou, Macenta, and Kissidougou. It sounds as if people have been moving out of Guéckédou and Macenta while carrying the diseases.

via H5N1: Guinea declares viral hemorrhagic fever epidemic.

Candidate Who Blamed Gays for Disasters Wins Ill. Congressional Primary | Advocate.com

Political newcomer Atanus made news in January during an interview with the editorial board of the Daily Herald, another suburban paper, in which she said gay activism and legalized abortion are responsible for phenomena including tornadoes, dementia, and autism because they have aroused God’s wrath.

“God is angry,” she said. “We are provoking him with abortions and same-sex marriage and civil unions.” Party leaders quickly called on her to quit the race, but she refused.

via Candidate Who Blamed Gays for Disasters Wins Ill. Congressional Primary | Advocate.com.

Continued Intimidation of Sri Lankan Civil Society

Continued Intimidation of Sri Lankan Civil Society.

The United States is concerned by intensifying pressure on Sri Lankan civil society and human rights activists. We are especially concerned by the detention of well-known human rights defenders Ruki Fernando and Father Praveen Mahesan after they made inquiries regarding the arrest of another activist. While it is encouraging that Mr. Fernando and Father Mahesan have since been released, they continue to face harassment by security forces. We are also aware of reports that additional human rights groups are being targeted for investigation by security forces.

Caribbean States Want Reparations for Western Europe Slave Trade – SPIEGEL ONLINE

Can countries be held responsible for crimes they committed hundreds of years ago? That’s a question on the minds of some legal experts following an agreement last week between the heads of 15 Caribbean nations to hold former colonial powers, including the United Kingdom and France, accountable for the “lasting damage of slavery.”

via Caribbean States Want Reparations for Western Europe Slave Trade – SPIEGEL ONLINE.

Happy Lebanon on #HappyDay

Happy Day After Happy Day!

Hummus For Thought

Yesterday, I announced on Facebook and Twitter the following:

Today's International Happiness Day (Yes, it's a thing). A group of young Lebanese will be in Hamra today at 5pm to spread some joy. Here's their message: Fear has taken over our Lebanese life. A rational fear of war. A rational fear of death. A rational fear of getting severely injured walking down the street. A fear of explosions, sniper bullets, stray bullets, all sorts of bullets really, knives too, and whatever home appliance our violent minds have been able to turn into deadly weapons (a pressure cooker if used "right" can also take away a human life we've learned). These rational fears have developed over years of being fed the news about the tragedy that surrounds us. But also irrational fears have surfaced. A fear of phone-calls (announcing a tragedy), a fear of beards (and what's hidden underneath them), a fear…

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B15 Bus Rider Fatally Shot When 14-Year-Old Fires ‘Wildly’: Gothamist

Witnesses said the 14-year-old was shooting “wildly” as he hit Angel Rojas, 39, in the back of the head. Rojas, who died at Woodhull Hospital, had been going home between his two jobs to say hello to his family. His wife told the Post, “He was a man that just worked for his family.”

via B15 Bus Rider Fatally Shot When 14-Year-Old Fires ‘Wildly’: Gothamist.