Bryan Monroe Sounds Off on Imus Return

first_imgAt the 2007 FOLIO: show, I met Bryan Monroe, the editorial director of Ebony and Jet magazines. His name, though, I already knew as the National Association of Black Journalists president, or, more to the point, the guy who held Viacom and NBC’s feet to the fire over the Imus/Rutgers’ women/”nappy-headed ‘hos” debacle. Since Imus’ recent return to the airwaves, I thought posting the video interview above now seemed prescient.last_img

Mattis Returning to Stanfords Hoover Institution

first_img ADC AUTHOR Former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is re-joining the Hoover Institution at Stanford University in May as the Davies Family Distinguished Fellow.“I believe we have an obligation to pass on the lessons we’ve learned so that future generations can study, learn and become better,” Mattis said in a press release. “Hoover has made this part of its mission, and I look forward to returning.”Mattis was a fellow at Hoover until he became secretary in January 2017. He left DOD at the end of 2018.DOD photo by Lisa Ferdinandolast_img

Senate Disaster Aid Bill Includes 2 Billion for Tyndall Cleanup

first_img ADC AUTHOR Senate Republican appropriators included $2 billion in a proposed disaster aid package for the military to rebuild from severe hurricane damage last fall. The overall relief package for $13.45 billion is in limbo after President Trump questioned the funding it includes for Puerto Rico, according to Politico.The aid package released Tuesday by Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) includes a total $1.1 billion to the Air Force with $400 million for Hurricane Michael damage at Tyndall Air Force, Fla., in October. Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point and Camp Lejeune, N.C., would see $315 million for Hurricane Florence damage, according to a Defense News report.The Pentagon has requested $9 billion for recent storm damage, as reported by On Base.The Air Force said Wednesday that almost $5 billion will be needed to rebuild Tyndall and recover from flooding damage to Offut Air Force Base, Neb., according to Defense News.Shelby’s proposal does not appear to address Offutt damages.The Air Force warned if it doesn’t receive $1.2 billion by June, it will reduce projects and pilot training hours at Tyndall and Offutt.“We desperately need the supplemental funding to recover from the natural disasters that hammered Tyndall and Offutt,” Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson said at a Heritage Foundation event. “There are other decisions we’ll have to make if we don’t [have supplemental funding] by May or June.”Air Force photo of Tyndall Air Force Base by Staff Sgt. Alexandre Monteslast_img read more

Shawsheen Tech Makes Significant Upgrades To School Security Systems

first_imgBILLERICA, MA — On Wednesday, October 24, 2018, Shawsheen Valley Technical High School welcomed community safety officials and State Representative Marc Lombardo to review and demonstrate the school’s updated security systems and recently-constructed Crisis Command Center.Superintendent-Director Timothy Broadrick and the District School Committee have been engaged in a three-year campus security project to bring the 49-year-old Shawsheen Technical High School building and grounds into the cutting edge of school security.  According to Superintendent Broadrick, “One of the challenges of an aging facility is making the right kinds of thoughtful investments that preserve the usefulness and longevity of the structures.  Our School Committee and our five member communities understand this, and they have annually supported a capital plan that keeps this place in great shape.”State Representative Marc Lombardo has been a champion of public safety as well as all forms of public education in Billerica, both in the Billerica Public School System and at Shawsheen Tech.  When he heard about the Shawsheen District’s plans from the Superintendent, he committed to lending a hand.  As a result, Representative Lombardo introduced a FY19 state budget line item for $50,000 to support the school’s efforts.  Shawsheen Tech is using the additional support to integrate a software system – Sielox Class – in a dedicated crisis management facility that will enable school officials as well as the Billerica Police department to respond to a variety of different kinds of emergencies in real time.Principal Jessica Cook and the high school’s Crisis Team have been working with the District’s security contractor and the Billerica Police to design protocols for a variety of potential safety threat situations. “It’s certainly a shame that educators have to spend time thinking about some of these things,” said Cook, “but, our students and staff have to feel safe in order for quality teaching and learning to occur.”The system will link the school to the Billerica Police department to allow instant notification when a “lockdown” or other crisis response occurs.  Additionally, Cook says that the system can link to parent notification systems and the school’s website to make public announcements when necessary.  Cook and her team have also been focused on the constant evaluation and growth of the school’s safety and security protocols to ensure and provide a safe and supportive learning environment.  Staff at the school have begun training on enhanced crisis response routines, which will soon include student drills, after communication with parents and additional staff training.  Says Cook, “Some of these changes feel overdue, but every school is racing to ensure its students are as safe as possible.  We are taking steps to not only catch up with the times, but to be on the leading edge of this kind of work.  This Crisis Command Center will be an invaluable resource to us.”Superintendent Timothy Broadrick, Representative Marc Lombardo, Isabel Fiasconaro, Grace Clark, Muhammadali Khalifa, Brian West Billerica PD/Shawsheen SRO, Jorielle Arlock, Billerica Police Chief Dan Rosa, Andre Comeau, Roy Frost, Deputy Chief Billerica Police Department, Principal Jessica CookRepresentative Marc Lombardo and Billerica Police Chief Dan Rosa speaking with Shawsheen Tech students about safety, security, and government(NOTE: The above press release is from the Shawsheen Tech.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedShawsheen Tech Superintendent Tim Broadrick To Step Down Mid-YearIn “Education”PHOTO: Shawsheen Tech Plays First Ever Baseball Game Under The Lights At Alumni StadiumIn “Photo of the Day”Shawsheen Tech School Committee Calls For School Boards Across The Country To Unite & Lobby For ‘Sane’ Gun LawsIn “Education”last_img read more

YSR Congress releases 2nd and final list of candidates for Lok Sabha

first_imgYSRCP president YS Jaganmohan ReddyYSRCP official websiteYSR Congress Party (YSRCP) on Sunday announced candidates for the remaining 17 Lok Sabha seats and all 175 Assembly seats in Andhra Pradesh.Party president YS Jaganmohan Reddy released the second and final list of candidates after paying tribute to his father and former Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy at his grave at Idupulapaya in Kadapa district.YSRCP had announced candidates for nine Lok Sabha seats late on Saturday.Jaganmohan Reddy will seek re-election from Pulivendula Assembly constituency, his family stronghold in Kadapa district.YSRCP has retained 40 sitting MLAs. It has given priority to backward classes, youth, experienced and loyalists.The list of Assembly candidates includes nine who worked in All India Services and 15 doctors. Out of the 175 candidates, 33 are below 45 years.Elections to the 175-member Assembly and all 25 Lok Sabha seats are scheduled on April 11.last_img read more

Uber Promises to Invest in Customer Safety Amid Passenger Security Controversies

first_imgUber, the ride-sharing service, announced in a blog post on Tuesday that it will invest in passenger security across all its markets.Uber had to take massive hits to its reputation given the state of affairs over the past few months. Starting with the tragic rape case in Delhi and other sexual abuse allegations from regions like Chicago and Boston, Uber has come under fire for having lax passenger safety measures.In the blog post, Uber promised to improve driver screening using new technology like “biometrics and voice verification” to up the security. The company also said that since background checks and screening processes were different in every market, they would work to develop methods like “polygraph exams” to help screen drivers better.Uber will also be developing a two-way feedback system in order to ensure instant access to customer support. They are building “Safety Incident Response teams around the world with the goal of providing 24/7, immediate support in the event of a safety incident,” the company said.Uber also said that they will be working with partners that specialise in women’s safety, conflict resolution and road safety to improve their services as well.”Uber is committed to developing new technology tools that improve safety, strengthen and increase the number of cities and countries where background checks are conducted and improve communication with local officials and law enforcement,” the company wrote.Uber’s security issues have already started working against the company. Many travelers are now resorting to local taxis than taking Uber cabs.”They made an app that works very well, but the human beings behind it are not acting with integrity. I stopped using it when I read about (drivers) assaulting and insulting female passengers,” Jennifer Dziura, a 36-year-old resident of Brooklyn told the New York Daily News. Dziura was a frequent user of Uber cabs.Also its customer services are disputable.”Uber seems very tone-deaf in all of this. I would have called to complain, but they don’t even have a phone number,” Aparna Mukherjee, a writer in Manhattan told the publication.According to Time, the new measures may not do much to satisfy critics. San Francisco state authorities have called Uber’s background checks “worthless” and until the ride-sharing service manages to make major changes, the negative press isn’t going to stop.But some think the bad publicity can be good for Uber.”You want to know what happens when Uber gets negative press? The same thing as when it gets positive press. Truckloads of people go, “What’s Uber?”, research it, and consider downloading the app,” Melanie Curtin, director of communications at OpiaTalk wrote on LinkedIn.”Margaret Thatcher used to call this ‘the oxygen of publicity’, and man, is Uber breathing it in,” she added.last_img read more

Keep antiliberation elements away from power for ever PM

first_imgAL president and PM Sheikh Hasina speaks at a discussion meeting in the capital`s Krishibid Institution, Bangladesh on Tuesday. Photo: PIDBangladesh Awami League (AL) president and prime minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday urged all to remain alert so that what she said the anti-liberation elements can never come to power, reports UNB.”This independence was earned at the cost of the blood of tens of thousands of people. Those who want to foil our independence should never come to power,” she said while addressing a discussion in the capital’s Krishibid Institution, Bangladesh auditorium.”The country shouldn’t be of militancy, anti-liberation forces and war criminals… it should be built based on the ideology of freedom fighters,” added the prime minister.Ruling Bangladesh Awami League arranged the discussion marking the 48th Independence and National Day.The prime minister said it is internationally recognised that her family members are not involved in any corruption though Awami League is now in power.”Coming to power, BNP [Bangladesh Nationalist Party] hired a special agency to level corruption charges against me, my sister [Sheikh Rehana], and my son and daughter. But it found nothing,” she said, adding that BNP made Bangladesh the world champion in corruption for five times.In an oblique reference to Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus, she said he had also made an attempt in the US to find if there was any corruption against her family members.Without mentioning his name, Hasina said he stopped the World Bank’s fund for the Padma bridge project.”They tried to put corruption blame on us. I also threw a challenge and told them to prove it. But they couldn’t prove it… the Canadian Federal Court dismissed all the allegations as false,” she claimed.Hasina criticised Khaleda Zia’s family, claiming that they indulged in corruption and money-laundering after assuming power.The prime minister said the court meted out punishment to the BNP chief and the government has nothing to do in this regard. “Had we had any intention to arrest her [Khaleda], we could have done so when the fire terrorism was unleashed.”She said her government’s only goal is to reach benefits of the independence to every doorstep across the country.Hasina said they want to work not for their personal gain but for making the country’s people wealthy and improving their lifestyle.last_img

Spain to suspend Catalonias govt call elections

first_imgSpanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy gives a press conference after a crisis cabinet meeting at the Moncloa Palace on 21 October, 2017 in Madrid. Photo: AFPSpain announced Saturday that it will move to dismiss Catalonia’s separatist government and call fresh elections in the semi-autonomous region in a bid to stop its leaders from declaring independence.The drastic escalation of Spain’s worst political crisis in decades will see separatist leader Carles Puigdemont and his administration stripped of their jobs, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told reporters after a crisis meeting of his cabinet.Puigdemont’s threat to declare independence “has been unilateral, contrary to the law, and seeking confrontation,” said Rajoy, adding that he will seek approval from the Senate — where his conservatives hold an absolute majority — for permission to dissolve the Catalan parliament and call elections within six months.In the meantime, the jobs of Puigdemont and his team will be carried out by Spain’s national ministers, Rajoy said.Puigdemont was due to respond at 9:00 pm (2100 GMT). In Barcelona, independence supporters took to their balconies banging their pots and pans in protest at Rajoy’s decision.Autonomy is a highly sensitive issue in wealthy Catalonia, which saw its powers taken away under the dictatorship of General Francisco Franco.Home to 7.5 million people, the northeastern region fiercely defends its language and culture and enjoys control over its policing, education and healthcare.In a crisis that has rattled stock markets and worried a European Union that is already struggling with Brexit, Catalonia held a banned independence referendum on October 1, with Puigdemont threatening to declare a breakaway state based on its results.- Uncharted legal waters -Under Article 155 of Spain’s constitution, Madrid enjoys powers to wrest back control of rebellious regions, but it has never used them before.Rajoy said he had made the decision reluctantly but had no choice in his battle to keep the country together.”This was neither our desire nor our intention,” he said.”We are applying Article 155 because the government of a democratic country cannot accept that the law is ignored.”He also insisted that the measures did not amount to “suspending Catalonia’s autonomy or self-government”, saying it was those who have jeopardised these rights “who are being stopped”.Rajoy said elections had wide backing amongst Catalans who are growing frustrated with politicians’ inability to end the deadlock.”The majority wants it, it is common sense,” he said.A poll for newspaper El Periodico released Saturday indicated 68 percent of Catalans back elections, although ahead of Rajoy’s announcement 66 percent rejected his move to seize powers from Catalonia.Separatists of all political stripes, from Puigdemont’s conservatives to the far-left, have dominated the Catalan parliament since the last elections in 2015, holding 72 seats out of 135.- ‘Hellish mess’ -Saturday’s dramatic developments come a day after Madrid won powerful backing from the king and the EU.King Felipe VI blasted what he said was an “unacceptable secession attempt” and said Catalonia was “an essential part of 21st century Spain”.”We do not want to give up that which we have built together,” he pleaded.European parliament head Antonio Tajani, accepting a prestigious prize from the king on behalf of the EU, demanded respect for the law in words that offered implicit backing to Madrid.”Some are sowing discord by deliberately ignoring law,” he said, adding pointedly: “All too often in the past the prospect of redrawing borders has been presented as a heavenly panacea that has resulted in a hellish mess.”As tensions continue to run high, independence supporters are set to rally in Barcelona at 1500 GMT calling for the release of Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sanchez, the leaders of two powerful grassroots separatist groups who have been in jail since Monday pending investigation into sedition charges.Puigdemont says an overwhelming 90 percent backed independence in the referendum, but turnout was 43 percent as many Catalans who back unity stayed away from a vote that had been ruled illegal while others were hindered from voting by a police crackdown.Catalonia is roughly evenly split over whether to break away from Spain, according to polls, with supporters saying the region does too much to prop up the rest of the national economy but their opponents arguing that it is stronger as part of a bigger nation.Two weeks of political limbo have already taken a toll on one of Spain’s most important regional economies, with nearly 1,200 companies shifting their legal headquarters elsewhere in a bid to minimise the instability.last_img read more

Kim hails unity with China in fresh visit

first_imgThis picture taken on 19 June 2018 and released by North Korea`s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) via KNS on 20 June 2018 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (L) shaking hands with Chinese president Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Meta: Kim Jong Un declared North Korea’s unstinting “friendship, unity and cooperation” with Beijing during his third visit to China this year, in a show of loyalty to his main ally following a landmark summit with US president Donald Trump.Kim Jong Un declared North Korea’s unstinting “friendship, unity and cooperation” with Beijing during his third visit to China this year, in a show of loyalty to his main ally following a landmark summit with US president Donald Trump.The two-day visit which ends Wednesday is designed to reassure Beijing that Pyongyang will not neglect its interests as Trump and the young autocrat move into uncharted diplomatic terrain.The performance is part of a delicate balancing act for Kim, who analysts say is seeking to play US and Chinese interests off each other while maintaining good relations with Beijing, his economic patron and diplomatic protector.China and the US both hope to see the Korean peninsula free of nuclear weapons, but Beijing is concerned Washington and Pyongyang might move closer at its expense, a possibility that China sees as threatening to its economic and security interests in the region.While China was not present at the 12 June summit in Singapore, it lent Kim a plane to travel to the city-state, a clear sign that it remains an influential force in the diplomatic shuffle.The Cold War-era allies, which fought side-by-side against US-led UN forces and South Korea in the 1950-1953 Korean War, have sought to repair ties strained by Pyongyang’s nuclear tests and Beijing’s support of subsequent UN sanctions.Kim chose Beijing for his first official foreign trip in March and met Xi again in May in the northeastern port city of Dalian.Kim’s agenda for Wednesday was not made public. An AFP journalist saw a motorcade leaving the Diaoyutai guest house for foreign dignitaries in Beijing, but it was unclear where it was headed.During his meeting with Xi Tuesday, Kim thanked China for “positive and sincere support and good help for the successful” summit with Trump, according to North Korea’s official KCNA news agency.The North Korean leader, who was greeted by a military honour guard and cheering children at the Great Hall of the People Tuesday, said he valued the “recently strengthened strategic cooperation” between the two countries.“He expressed the determination and will to further develop the closer relations of friendship, unity and cooperation between the two parties and the two peoples of the DPRK and China,” KCNA said.Kim also invoked the “prospect for the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula” following his meeting with Trump.For his part, Xi told Kim that China “speaks highly” of his summit with Trump and he urged Washington and Pyongyang to implement their agreement struck in Singapore.The Chinese leader vowed that Beijing would continue to play a “constructive role” in the nuclear diplomacy.Trade cardThe official media of both countries did not say whether Kim and Xi discussed the prospect of easing UN sanctions that have crippled North Korea’s economy, though analysts said it could have been part of the agenda.Shin Beom-chul, a senior fellow at the Seoul-based Asan Institute for Policy Studies, said Kim and Xi were likely seeking “common ground” following the Singapore summit.For China, North Korea can serve as “an important card” as Beijing faces a potential trade war with the United States, Shin told AFP.“For the North, it can also show to the world, especially the US, that Beijing has Pyongyang’s back if the North’s ties with the US sour in the future,” Shin said.North Korean officials have also visited China recently to learn about its economic reforms-yet another sign of Pyongyang’s reliance on Beijing for its economic wellbeing.Kim was believed to have visited an agriculture sciences centre on Wednesday, according to South Korea’s Yonhap news agency.“We are happy to see that the DPRK made a major decision to shift the focus to economic construction, and the development of the DPRK’s socialist cause has entered a new stage in history,” Xi told Kim, according to China’s official Xinhua news agency.China has backed United Nations sanctions against its ally but indicated last year that the UN Security Council could consider easing the punitive measures.last_img

Two Viqarunnisa teachers indicted over Aritree suicide

first_imgAritree Adhikari. Photo: CollectedA Dhaka court on Wednesday indicted two teachers of Viqarunnisa Noon School and College in a case over the suicide of ninth grader Aritree Adhikari.Dhaka third additional metropolitan sessions judge Md Rabiul Alam framed the charges against them in the case, reports UNB.Those indicted are – acting principal Nazneen Ferdous, morning shift in-charge of Bailey Road branch Zeenat Akhter.The court also fixed 27 October for starting trial in the case.Earlier, a court accepted the charge-sheet against the former principal and the Bailey Road branch head of the school in the case.The court also exempted Hasna Hena, class teacher of Aritree, from the charges.On 20 March, detective branch inspector Quamrul HasanTalukdar, also the investigation officer of the case, submitted the charge-sheet against the two teachers before the court.Aritree Adhikari, a Class-IX student, committed suicide at their Shantinagar residence in the city on 3 December 2018 after allegedly being rebuked by teachers for using mobile phone during examination.Victim’s father Dilip Adhikari filed a case against three teachers of the school.last_img read more

All the Easter bombers either killed or arrested SL police chief

first_imgSri Lankan security personnel stand guard in front of St Anthony`s Shrine two days after it was attacked as part of a string of suicide bomb attacks on churches and hotels, in Colombo on 23 April 2019. Photo: AFPSri Lankan security authorities have either killed or arrested all the jihadists responsible for the Easter suicide bombings that left 257 people dead, police chief Chandana Wickramaratne said Tuesday.Police have accounted for every individual involved in the April 21 attacks on three churches and three luxury hotels, Wickramaratne said in an audio statement.”All those who organised and carried out the suicide bomb attack have died or is in our custody,” he said.”The two bomb experts of the group have been killed. We have seized the explosives they had stored for future attacks.”Wickramaratne, who was named acting police chief last week after President Maithripala Sirisena suspended his predecessor over his failure to act on warnings about the attacks, said public life was slowly returning to normal with the lifting of curfews imposed after the bombs.The government reopened public schools on Monday, but attendance dropped to below 10 percent in many places with parents still fearing attacks.”We have strengthened security for all schools,” the police chief said. “We are also conducting a programme to create awareness about safety and security in all schools.”Wickramaratne did not say how many people were in custody over the bombings, but police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera said Monday that 73 people, including nine women, were being held.The bombings were blamed on a local group, the national Thowheeth Jama’ath (NTJ), but the Islamic State group has also claimed responsibility.Police said religious tensions have eased at Negombo, a town north of Colombo that suffered the highest death toll in the Easter Sunday attacks. A bomb at St Sebastian’s church in the town killed more than 100 worshippers.Dozens of Muslim-owned businesses, homes and vehicles in Negombo were damaged in clashes on Sunday night.The Roman Catholic Church appealed for calm and urged Christians not to carry our revenge attacks against Muslims.Police said two arrests were made and more suspects had been identified through CCTV footage.last_img

Spacewalking Astronauts Tackle Battery Work Outside Station

first_imgAstronauts are taking a spacewalk to hook up fancy new batteries on the International Space Station’s sprawling power grid.Commander Shane Kimbrough  and Peggy Whitson ventured out Friday morning. It’s the first of two spacewalks over the coming week to energize the station’s aging solar power system.Flight controllers have already completed much of the work. Using station robotics, controllers in Houston spent the past week replacing decade-old, nickel-hydrogen batteries with better charging lithium-ion ones. Handling all those batteries — each about half a refrigerator in size — was cumbersome and time-consuming.Now it’s up to Kimbrough and Whitson to wire up the three new lithium-ion batteries, delivered last month. Spacewalkers will plug in three more next Friday.Whitson now ties the record for most spacewalks by a woman.A #spacewalk is actually more of a climb, as astronauts use their hands to move about the outside of @Space_Station: https://t.co/apbFNC2Ix1 pic.twitter.com/JqbFtWpv3u— NASA (@NASA) January 6, 2017 Sharelast_img read more

And Were Off — The Texas Redistricting Trial Starts Today

first_imgIllustration by Anneke Paterson / Todd WisemanDid Texas target voters by race? No, the state says — even though they admit to drawing maps in a partisan way, which is something courts have allowed in the past.The curtains are rising on the redistricting case in Texas today as three federal judges in San Antonio begin a week-long trial centered on a crucial question: Did the state intentionally weaken voting rights for millions of Texans just because of their skin color? With 2018 elections coming into sight, the clock is ticking — and the trial could set the stage for shaking up races across the state. Here’s what you need to know: • How did we get here? After fresh census data came out in 2010, the Republican-controlled Texas Legislature drafted new political boundaries. Minority rights groups immediately raised a red flag, calling the new state and congressional maps discriminatory toward Latino and black voters across Texas. A court drew temporary maps ahead of the 2012 elections in response; lawmakers formally adopted those in 2013 and the state has used them ever since. • The issue flared this spring when the same three judges heading the trial this week dealt two blows to the state. They first ruled that three of Texas’ 36 congressional districts were drawn illegally. The judges took issue with the state’s House map a month later, saying the political boundaries intentionally discriminated against minorities statewide and in particular districts. • The divide: Texas wants the trio of judges to dump the legal challenge of the maps. Minority rights groups want the maps — which they argue were meant to be temporary — redrawn before the 2018 election cycle. Did Texas target voters by race? No, the state says — even though they admit to drawing maps in a partisan way, which is something courts have allowed in the past. Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court is about to consider another major redistricting case challenging maps drawn to gain partisan advantage. • Tick tock. If the judges order new maps, it would send lawmakers scrambling to create new ones without delaying the upcoming elections. If the involved parties aren’t happy with the eventual ruling, the case could head to the U.S. Supreme Court, potentially altering timing for candidates in the 2018 election cycle. The trial is expected wrap up Friday or Saturday, but it’s unclear when the judges will rule. Sharelast_img read more

Heres How Translators Are Helping Harvey Evacuees

first_img Share KUTJose Guerrero walks around with his parrot at the Delco Center for Harvey evacuees in Austin.Thousands of people are finding their way to dry blankets and warm socks in shelters all across Texas. Dallas expects to host as many as 10,000 people fleeing Harvey; in Austin, as many as 7,000. Donations keep trickling in.But there’s one big need that’s still out there: multi-lingual volunteers.Walking into the Delco Center – one of Austin’s shelters for Harvey evacuees – you might remember that Houston was recently dubbed the most diverse city in America. A little less than half the people there speak a language other than English.Many are bilingual like much the rest of Texas. But not all.“I would certainly encourage [people] out there, if they are bilingual or trilingual, to certainly volunteer,” says Geof Sloan of the Red Cross.Tuesday morning there were no Spanish-speaking volunteers at the shelter. But, Sloan says, one of the evacuees from Freeport rose to the challenge.“Anything I can do to help, just let me know,” says Maria Villagomez. “You also need a lot of help, and helping each other is a great idea.”Also at the shelter was Jose Guerrero. Walking around with the family’s yellow- and-green parrot on his shoulder, he was hard to miss.At the time, he was on the phone with his sisters. They were still trapped in Richmond, Texas.Guerrero says leaving Richmond in the middle of a disaster – and finding answers to his questions when he doesn’t speak English – has been tough.Forty-seven-year-old Guerrero was born in Mexico and has been in the U.S. since he was 15. He’s been here much longer than he ever was in his home country. He’s a naturalized American, but he’s never been able to learn how to speak English.“I’m a little mad with myself that I don’t speak English,” he says in Spanish. “I don’t know what to tell you. Have I been lazy to learn? I’m a gardener. Have I worked too much and haven’t had time to go to school? I just don’t know.”Later that day, a bilingual volunteer arrived at the shelter. Maribel Canizales does IT work for the state comptroller’s office, but took the week off to work for the Red Cross.Immediately after she arrived, a family of Spanish speakers showed up. The mother asked if there were any showers available and Canizales walked the family to the showers, asking what else they needed: Shampoo? Socks?The adults were clearly shaken. As Canizales led them through the center, she casually put her arms around the mom.So what does it means to someone when somebody speaks their language? “There’s a connection … it makes them feel at home,” Canizales says, crying. “I want those people to feel at home, comfortable and welcomed.”Canizales is originally from Laredo. She gets emotional because, as a child, she was told not to speak Spanish.“When I came to Austin, it was very segregated back in the 70’s,” she says. “We were not very welcomed with our language, and so we were encouraged to speak English. And so, I kept up on the side with my native language, Spanish.”Today, anyone who’s been keeping up with a language other than English is encouraged to fill out a volunteer application and complete the training for the Red Cross. People who speak languages from India, Europe and Asia are needed too.Copyright 2017 KUT 90.5. To see more, visit KUT 90.5.last_img read more

HBCU Students and Leaders Lobby Capitol Hill for Support

first_imgBy James Wright, Special to the AFRO, jwright@afro.comHundreds of students, administrators and alumni from Black higher education institutions from around the country recently visited the U.S. Capitol to lobby lawmakers on behalf of their institutions to demand more financial support.The HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) Collective held its “Second Day of Action” April 17, with close to 300 people contacting their U.S. legislators.Robert T. Stephens, the founder of the collective, told the AFRO that HBCUs are more important than ever.Amos Jackson III is the president-elect of the Howard University Student Association. (Courtesy Photo-Amos Jackson III)“This day of action is taking place because we want the members of Congress to support Black colleges and universities,” Stephens, a 2008 graduate of Winston-Salem State University in Winston-Salem, N.C., said. “We want the Congress to support legislation that calls for increased funding for these institutions. While we are happy that there is increased funding in the 2018 budget for Black colleges, there is still more that is needed.”Activities during the day included a Capitol Hill rally, a legislative boot camp to learn how to effectively lobby lawmakers and visits to the offices of representatives and senators.Presently, there are 101 HBCUs in the U.S. and almost all of them were established after the Civil War and before the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Many non-HBCU colleges and universities barred African Americans from attending their schools until the 1960s.HBCUs range in size and mission from large North Carolina A&T University, Howard University and Southern University to smaller schools such as Huston-Tillotson University and Miles College.However, many Black institutions don’t receive the kind of aid from their state legislatures and the U.S. Congress that non-HBCU schools get in terms of research and capital funding. That is why U.S. Reps. Alma Adams (D-N.C.) and Bradley Byrne (R-Ala.) the co-chairs of the HBCU Bipartisan Caucus, has introduced the “HBCU Capital Financing Improvement Act.”The bill would provide low-cost private loans to HBCUs to finance infrastructure repairs, maintenance and construction.U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) has introduced companion legislation to Adams’s bill in his chamberDr. Maria Thompson is the president of Coppin State University in Baltimore. Thompson told rally participants that Black colleges “continue to fill the void in our nation’s educational landscape.”“Most campuses teach from the European perspective but we teach from the African-American experience,” she said. “Even though there are 4,000 colleges and universities and there are only 100 HBCUs, HBCUs produce 20 percent of African Americans who get bachelor’s degrees, 24 percent of African Americans who get degrees in the STEM field and more than 50 percent of the African-American teachers. That is a high level of productivity and Congress should increase its investment in HBCUs.”Among the 30 students who attended the rally was Amos Jackson III, the president-elect of the Howard University Student Association. Jackson told the AFRO that students at HBCUs need to let their public officials know of their institutions’ needs.“It is important that members of Congress, as well as elected officials at the state and local level, understand the challenges that Black colleges face and the students can relate those experiences the best,” Jackson, who takes office in May, said. “HBCUs are more important than ever because America is not as integrated as people believe and it is the Black college that gives African-American students access to education.”last_img read more

St Louis Broadcaster Who Called MLK Coon Will Temporarily Leave Anchor Desk

first_imgBy The Associated PressA St. Louis newscaster who uttered what he called an unintentional racial slur while discussing Martin Luther King Jr. says he will step away from the anchor desk while he works to regain viewers’ trust.KTVI-TV’s Kevin Steincross said on Jan. 17 that an upcoming tribute would honor “Martin Luther Coon Jr.” He apologized and station management initially said he would not be disciplined.Kevin Steincross (Screengrab)But the St. Louis County NAACP demanded the station fire Steincross.On Jan. 25, Steincross apologized again. He and station management issued statements saying they agreed Steincross should take a break from the anchor desk and address the “pain (Steincross) caused.”Station management says they met with several Black and civic organizations and employees to hear their views.The statements didn’t indicate how long Steincross would be away from the anchor desklast_img read more

Wesbrooks Named 2018 USTA Kentucky Junior Male Tennis Player of the Year

first_imgStory Links “I am happy for Alex for being given this award,” said UofL head coach Rex Ecarma. “He follows the footsteps of other great players in the past. His junior days were a stepping stone to the collegiate level that he is now. This award acknowledged his past results and I will do all that I can that his success continues in his college career at UofL.” University of Louisville freshman Alex Wesbrooks was recently honored as United States Tennis Association (USTA) Kentucky 2018 Junior Male Player of the Year. The Louisville native earned the honor after helping St. Xavier High School capture its third straight Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA) state title. The 2018 Kentucky Mr. Tennis selection also collected his second consecutive all-state selection last year and was ranked as high as No. 47 nationally according to TennisRecruiting.net. Wesbrooks has already made an immediate impact at UofL and stands tied for second on the team with 10 singles wins and 11 doubles victories. Print Friendly Versionlast_img read more

Quantum communication without entanglement could perform faster than previously thought possible

first_img More information: W. J. Munro, et al. “Quantum communication without the necessity of quantum memories.” Nature Photonics DOI: 10.1038/NPHOTON.2012.243 Illustration of the new quantum communication scheme, where information is directly transmitted from one node to another using a transmitter unit and a receiver unit. The scientists calculated that the new approach could potentially enable communication rates several orders of magnitude faster than other approaches. Credit: W. J. Munro, et al. ©2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited In such a system, the performance is inherently limited by the time it takes to establish entanglement between nodes. This time is at best the classical signaling time between the nodes, but with many schemes it is even longer, and increases as network size increases. Since the qubits that store the quantum information are unstable and quickly decohere, quantum memories are required to store quantum information for milliseconds or longer while they wait for entanglement. The result is a theoretical limitation on speed due to the system’s design and the need for additional components – quantum memories – to enable a functioning network.In a new study published in Nature Photonics, scientists from Japan and the UK have presented an alternative design for a quantum communication network that requires neither entanglement between nodes nor quantum memories. Instead, the scheme transmits quantum information in encoded form directly across the network, using devices that act as quantum repeaters (without entanglement) to transmit and receive information between each other. Because this approach doesn’t use entanglement, the communications rate is not limited by the conventional restraints that limit the rates of entanglement-based approaches.”The significance of this work is that we have removed the need for classical messages to herald the generation of entanglement between adjacent nodes,” coauthor Bill Munro of NTT Basic Research Laboratories in Kanagawa, Japan, and the National Institute of Informatics in Tokyo, Japan, told Phys.org. “This classical signal means our qubits at the remote nodes had to wait until it could be found out whether they were entangled or not. With repeater nodes separated by tens of kilometers, this waiting time was on the order of hundreds of microseconds. This means we needed long-lived quantum memories (milliseconds or longer life times) to store the information (entanglement) that was in those qubits. Copyright 2012 Phys.org All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Citation: Quantum communication without entanglement could perform faster than previously thought possible (2012, October 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-10-quantum-entanglement-faster-previously-thought.html In order to build a quantum internet – a network that is faster and more secure than the current internet – the key is the ability to transmit quantum information between remote quantum computers (i.e., nodes). The most familiar approach involves entangling the links between nodes and then using quantum repeaters at intermediate locations to provide entanglement swapping, extending the range of entanglement across km-long networks. Explore further Quantum networks advance with entanglement of photons, solid-state qubits This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. “Our new scheme removes the need for long-lived quantum memories, as we do not aim to establish entanglement between the remote nodes. Instead we send an encoded signal between the nodes. Once the message has left one node to be transmitted to the next node, the resources available in the first node are freed up and the next message can be sent down the channel (even before the second node has received the first message), thus increasing the rate at which information can be transmitted. Entanglement-based approaches cannot do this, so their only route to higher communication rates is by paralleling resources within the node.”In the new approach, information is stored in matter qubits, such as electron spins, in the transmitter and receiver units. The transmitter, which contains a single-photon source, transfers the information from the matter qubits to the photonic qubits. Then it sends the photonic qubits down an optical fiber to the receiver, which contains a single-photon detector. The receiver operates in reverse, transferring the information from the photonic qubits back to matter qubits. Unlike traditional schemes, the new scheme doesn’t require entanglement between the matter qubits at the two remote nodes. As soon as the transmitter moves the information from the matter qubit to the photonic qubit, the matter qubit is no longer needed, so quantum memory is not required to store its information. After the completion of one cycle, the final matter qubit is checked for errors using a redundant quantum parity code. Since channel losses and source/detector inefficiencies are inevitable, quantum states can easily be degraded during quantum communication. The error correction code protects against this degradation by measuring the states of several matter qubits that all carry the same information. The physicists showed that this encoding process can tolerate photon loss in excess of 50% in the quantum channel between nodes, which allows for nodes to be spaced further apart than usually thought.After the error correction code verifies successful transmission of a qubit, the receiver then acts as a transmitter and sends the information on to the next node in the network. The scientists calculated that the scheme could transmit data at a rate of 107 quantum states per second, and operate over a distance of at least 17 km between nodes. With 48 nodes, quantum information could be transmitted over 800 km with a success probability of greater than 98%. The scientists calculated that the new approach could potentially enable communication rates several orders of magnitude faster than other approaches. In addition to speed, the new scheme also has other routing advantages.”Our solution also makes it very easy to see how one can send information on a more complicated quantum network,” Munro said. “Each node would have a telephone-like number and then we can think of telephone-like exchanges that route the information to where it needs to go. The node that sends the original message does not need to know the route to the final destination. Instead it just needs to get to a local exchange which can route it through the chain using country, region, and city parts of the telephone-like number.”In the future, the researchers plan to tackle some of the technical challenges facing the new quantum communication scheme.”Our future plans are an experimental implementation of this approach,” Munro said. “Currently we are working on ways to improve our local gates within our physical system – a necessary step to showing our new communication scheme.”The key requirement in this new approach is the need for efficient quantum gates within the repeater node,” he added. “In the normal entanglement-based approach, we can work with gates that fail a lot of the time in a heralded way. Currently, efficient quantum gates are experimentally challenging to achieve but they need to be achieved if distributed quantum computers are going to be achieved.” Journal information: Nature Photonicslast_img read more

South India is near Qutab Minar

first_imgThere is much more to south India than the regular idli, dosa and sambhar. The art and craft from the region, for instance, is unknown to many in the northern parts of India. Isha Utsav, a cultural festival, might just bridge that gap. The fair gives Delhi a glimpse of south Indian art, crafts and textiles. ‘The 12 day long exhibition features specially designed crafts from rural India, organic food, daily meditation sessions and live music’ said Anubhav Nath, owner, 1AQ, where the exhibition is being held. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The art, craft and textiles displayed are made from locally sourced natural materials. The product range includes eco-friendly decorative baskets, all-purpose trays, lamps, fragrances, mats, fashionable cotton and jute handbags. Rudrakash, ethnic garments and Yoga wear and T-shirts are the most popular picks. The products are eco-friendly and are made from natural and bio-degradable materials. Stone sculptures, urlis and metal crafts made out of recycled material are other top picks at this ongoing fete. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix‘On the first day itself, we had a footfall of 500 people. The price range of articles start from Rs 500 and go upto Rs 15,000,’ added Anubhav.The special feature of the festival is an initiative to revive the traditional south Indian foods which were lost in the last few generations.‘The idea is to promote a wholesome range of snacks, drinks and meals, which are a perfect blend of taste, nutrition and convenience. There would also be food sampling of nutritious and wholesome appams, dosas and freshly prepared herbal teas,’ said Abhinav.Another highlight is the Isha Sound and Meditation workshops wherein participants would be taught meditation for a peaceful state of being through ethereal and serene sounds. The classes will happen daily between 4 pm to 7 pm.Go catch it.DETAILAt: 1AQ, Qutab Minar Main RoundaboutOn Till: 23 January Timings: 11 am to 7 pm dailylast_img read more

Folk Festival to be icing on cake for Hill tourists this season

first_imgDarjeeling: With peace and tranquility returning, tourists are again making a beeline for the Darjeeling and Kalimpong Hills. This time there is an added attraction for the tourists visiting the Hills, as the 2nd edition of the Kalimpong Darjeeling Folk Festival is all set to be flagged off on October 26 in Kalimpong.The 3 day festival is part of the Rural Craft & Cultural Hub initiative of the department of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises & Textiles (MSME&T), in collaboration with UNESCO. Video documentation of the cultural heritage of 16 Hill communities will also be released at the festival. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe MSME&T department has developed 10 Rural Craft Hubs in association with UNESCO, which benefit 3,000 handicraft artisans. It is also in the process of developing Rural Craft and Cultural Hubs (RCCH) across 15 districts, which would benefit an additional 12,000 rural artisans. The endeavours are aimed at strengthening grassroot level creative enterprises in the state. “The West Bengal Khadi and Village Industry Board (WBKVIB) has supported many such Hill communities in Kalimpong and Darjeeling. They will be supporting them with Folk Centres. MOUs have been inked with the communities and the process of land identification for the Folk Centres is underway. Already, 5 communities have identified or donated land,” stated Nirmalya Roy, manager of Banglanatak dot com. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed”Video documentation of the cultural heritage of all the 16 Hill communities has also been prepared. The DVDs will be released at the festival” added Roy. “The DVDs are very special as they contain the cultural brief of the Darjeeling and Kalimpong region, covering lifestyle, food habits, costumes, scripts and other cultural elements of these communities,” said Roy. The communities include Mangar, Dhimal, Tamang, Lepcha, Rai, Khas, Bhutia, Tibetan, Limbu, Sarki, Bhujel, Newar, Gurung, Kami, Damai and Sherpa. Albaluna, an international band from Portugal, will be the star attraction of the festival. Different Hill communities will also present their unique cultures, songs and dances. “The cultural aspect of any destination is a major attraction. Such initiatives go a long way in promoting a place and people. It is a welcome move,” stated Samrat Sanyal, a tour operator.last_img read more