Saturday, June 15, 2024

Stirring the Waters: Cornell President Becomes Third Ivy League Leader to Step Down Since...

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On May 9th, 2024, Martha E. Pollack declared her retirement after acting as Cornell University’s 14th President for over 7 years. Her departure date is slated to be June 30th, 2024, with Michael I. Kotlikoff scheduled to begin acting as interim president on July 1st. Kotlikoff, at the behest of the Cornell Board of Trustees,  will serve a two-year term as interim president.  The board plans to form a search committee to formally select Cornell’s 15th president with their search scheduled to conclude six to nine months before Kotlikoff’s term termination. Following her retirement, Pollack will be recognized for her contributions through the title of President Emerita, given by the Cornell Board of Trustees. The Latin-based term emeritus/emerita is a selective honorary title given to someone who has retired from a position of prestige, typically in academia or politics. This allows for the continued usage of their previously held title while also potentially allowing the individual to maintain some of their former duties.  

All Natural – Gay Penguins, Trans Lions, and Other LGBTQ+ Reps in the Animal...

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Happy Pride! To anyone identifying as LGBTQ+ or exploring their identity, we see and respect you, not just in June, but all year round. Diversity is something to be celebrated, after all.  Unfortunately, how progressive people are varies between locations, with discrimination against the queer community still being very prevalent in some areas. In the Southern states, laws restricting LGBTQ+ rights and prohibiting the teaching of the subject in schools are repeatedly passed - no person should have those basic rights denied simply because of their gender identity or sexual orientation. Government officials will  argue that homosexuality isn’t natural, that being transgender is a sin, in order to justify their outlandish proposals.  What’s curious, though, is that taking a look at nature proves the exact opposite. Over 1,500 different species, from salmon to spiders,  dolphins to ducks, have been observed engaging in homosexual behavior. Biologist Bruce Bagemihl explains in his book Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity that examples of homosexual behavior (besides actual intercourse) include courtship, pair bonding, and raising young, all of which have been exhibited by a wide range of creatures.

Intelligence Going Down the Skibidi Toilet 

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Generation Alpha, children born after 2010, is growing up in a drastically different environment than its predecessors. As digital natives, these young individuals are intricately linked to technology from a young age, influencing their experiences, behaviors, and development. However, despite the advantages of technological advances, Gen Alpha faces a unique set of challenges that contribute to an overall decline. This reduction has several causes including increasing screen time, educational disturbances, social and emotional development challenges, environmental and cultural strains, and tremendous societal and parental expectations. Understanding these issues is imperative for satisfying the needs of this generation and creating a healthier, more supportive atmosphere that fosters their growth and development.

AP Exams Get Leaked in China

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On May 6th, 2024, an international school teacher reported that “multiple” AP exams had been leaked in China and were on sale on an app called Xian Yu. Students apparently verified that the exams listed online were the same as the ones administered. They were concerned that the exam scores will be canceled as a result of this, but despite contacting College Board, no updates have come since.

ICC Charges Israeli Prime Minister with War Crimes

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On May 21st, 2024, the International Criminal Court (ICC) sought arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, Hamas supreme leader Ismail Haniyeh, and Hamas commanders Yahya Sinwar and Mohammed Deif. These warrants were on account of war crimes in the Israel-Hamas war. This accusation has generated both support and outrage internationally.

The Causes and Global Implications of Haiti’s Gang Takeover

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In the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince, the roads lie deserted, with charred and smashed buildings on either side. In some neighborhoods, fires burn night and day, consuming streets with smoke. Highways and roads are without life, their only occupants upturned and smashed cars. Trucks and buses sit abandoned in the middle of the street, surrounded by craters and wreckage. The only vehicles still in operation are armored cars or pickup trucks filled with masked, armed men. Community centers and churches are filled with civilians, while outside a violent struggle occurs between powerful gangs and the fragmented government police force. Haiti is locked in an internal conflict that has utterly crippled the island nation.

Red Lobster Files for Bankruptcy

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The company continued to shut down, later blaming the pandemic, sustained industry headwinds, higher interest rates, and rising material and labor costs. Red Lobster has long been a popular dining choice for many American families, serving as an introduction to seafood for some. Despite the ongoing challenges, it's unlikely that Red Lobster will be back in business anytime soon.

A New Tourist Attraction: Driverless Cars

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Self-driving cars are one of the newest types of technology that will one day reshape the norm of driving. Robotaxis or autonomous vehicles have been eminent through the San Francisco streets, with some corporations starting up in 2009, while others have just started operating commercially since last August. This technology accomplishes the satisfaction of not having to drive, yet it has become the city's latest tourist attraction. Individuals like Mr. De Clerq, who owns multiple restaurants and spends most of his time traveling, states that he loves exploring new things and is enthusiastic to try a ride from a robotaxi.

Failed Assasination Attempt Made on Slovakian President

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Prime Minister Robert Fico of Slovakia was shot multiple times in what is considered to be one of the most severe attacks on a European leader. This devastating incident, which was presumably sparked by the actions of Robert Fico, known for challenging the authority of leaders in the European Union, may have also fueled a fear that Europe's polarized politics are slowly resorting towards violence. Mr. Fico was shot after emerging from the cultural center in the town of Handlova as he greeted a small paparazzi in Banikov Square. With the first shot fired, Mr. Fico doubled over at the waist and tumbled backward onto a bench as more firing was heard. Security officers hustled him into a black Audi a couple of feet away, half-carrying him to the rear door. He was rushed to a nearby hospital and then airlifted to another hospital for emergency surgery. The gunman was identified as a 71-year-old poet and was immediately wrestled to the ground by security officers. 

Singapore Airlines Turbulence

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Singapore recently released information regarding the sudden deadly turbulence that hit Flight SQ321 about 10 hours into a 13-hour trip to Singapore from London. Unfortunately, officials reported that a 73-year-old man from Britain died, along with 70 other people who were injured during the flight. The turbulence hit as the plane reached thirty-seven thousand feet, traveling over Myanmar. The cause of this turbulence is unknown, but the Transport Ministry later informed the media that an updraft had occurred moments after the incident. In addition, they state that as the plane rose 362 feet, it also sped up unexpectedly around the same time, eventually leading to the pilots needing to brake the aircraft and take control manually. All of this spontaneous activity ultimately led to the injuries that many passengers and flight members received, and particularly further impacted individuals who were not securely placed in their seats.

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