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March 27, 2009

Random Round-Up: In The News

Disclaimer: We are away from reliable internet for the week. This blog entry was written previously and scheduled to be posted today. If anything is outdated or has been disproved by now, well, too fucking bad.

The following are a list of recent news stories that, well, to be honest, are either kinda odd, pretty infuriating, or both. Just a few of those "I don't know exactly what to say about this, but I feel like I should say something about this" stories. These are the stories that deserve some real thought, research, and intelligent commentary. Unfortunately we don't have time for any of that right now. So here you go. The super short version. We'd love to hear what you have to say about them.
  • New York Assemblyman Felix Ortiz has proposed a $10 tax for patrons of strip clubs. He says the revenue would go towards helping victims of sex trafficking. Texas already had a similar $5 "pole tax", which was intended to fund sexual assault and health insurance programs. However, a state judged deemed it to be unconstitutional. (State lawyers have appealed).
  • The tennis community isn't sure what to do with Sarah Gronert, a 22-year-old tennis pro from Germany who was born with both male and female genitalia, but who identifies as female. Some members of the tennis community (mainly the coaches of her opponents) claim that she has an unfair advantage in women's tennis because she's really "a man".
  • A recent radio poll for Connecticut's KISS 95.7 asked women "would you rather be called a slut or fat?" No, really. (In case you're wondering, being called a slut won).
  • Swedish swimmer Therese Alshammar was the first swimmer to be stripped of a world record (50 metre butterfly) because she wore two swimsuits in order to protect her modesty. The International Swimming Federation recently ruled that swimmers cannot wear anything at all under their skin-tight racing gear.
  • Last year more people came forward to report sexual assaults in the military. However, only a small number of the cases actually went to military courts and prosecution is still low. According to Congresswoman Jane Harman (California) military women are "more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire in Iraq."
  • Yahoo news has tried to claim that the daughters of famous politicians are following in their dad's footsteps by getting involved in politics. Their examples include: Meghan McCain (sorry, but blogging about how Ann Coulter sucks doesn't automatically make you a political pundit); Chelsea Clinton (um, dad's footsteps? what about mom's?); Alexandra Kerry (she "hit the campaign trail" during her father's presidential bid, even though pretty much every presidential candidate's kids have done that); and the Bush twins (they introduced their father at the 2004 Republican Convention, holy crap, you should just give them a Senate seat now).
  • For some reason, people are still talking about A-Rod. This time we're subjected to his creepy photo shoot for Details magazine. Seriously, can't he just go away already?
  • New Jersey has canceled plans to ban "Brazilian" bikini waxing after angry salon owners complained about losing business. The ban was proposed by the state Cosmetology and Hairstyling Board after two women were hospitalized for infections following the procedure, one of whom filed a lawsuit.

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