A petition containing half a million signatures, calling for the traditional definition of marriage to remain unchanged, has been handed in to 10 Downing Street -- The Church of England has told the government that if same sex marriage is legalised, it could trigger a constitutional crisis and end the 500-year link between church and state -- The British Medical Journal is calling on Doctors' organisations to stop opposing assisted suicide -- A law intended to protect citizens from harassment is curbing free speech, and needs to be changed says Guardian columnist Timothy Garton Ash -- A former editor of lads-mag 'Loaded' has spoken of his shame for defending the publication which he now believes encouraged young men to access hard core pornography -- And West Indian cricket hero Tino Best has given thanks to Jesus following his historic record breaking innings at last weeks test match.
(Image source: NDTV)
BY NATHAN BYRNE
ANCHOR MEGAN MURPHY
Anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks could have a global security firm feeling — well — insecure.
Behold “The Global Intelligence Files.” WikiLeaks promises to publish five million emails belonging to Stratfor which it says…
“…provides confidential intelligence services to large corporations … and government agencies … The emails show Stratfor’s web of informers, pay-off structure, payment-laundering techniques and psychological methods.”
Stratfor hit the damage-control trail Monday, warning of impostor emails phishing for clients’ private info. The company’s CEO posted this video on its website…
“I wanted to warn you that individuals continue to send out false communications that appear to be from Stratfor, but are not. … Our website, stratfor****, is the most secure place for you to communicate with us.”
The leaks began flowing Monday, via WikiLeaks’ media partners. Like Lebanon’s Al-Akhbar, which published some of the emails looking “inside the world of a private CIA.”
So, how did WikiLeaks get its hands on five million alleged pieces of electronic correspondence? The New York Times says…
“WikiLeaks did not disclose how it obtained the e-mails, but Stratfor acknowledged in December that its data servers were breached by a group of hackers known as Anonymous. The loose-knit group publicly supports WikiLeaks.”
The hacktivists at Anonymous didn’t come right out and claim responsibility. But there’s this — on Twitter…
“Stratfor is trending worldwide. Congrats on the amazing partnership between #Anonymous and #WikiLeaks to make all 5 MILLION mails public.”
Anonymous made no bones about hacking Stratfor back in December. Now, a writer for Forbes suggests, it all comes together.
“The leaderless collective Anonymous once acted as WikiLeaks’ vigilante avenger … while WikiLeaks kept a careful remove from their offensives. But … Anonymous now says it’s upgraded its relationship with WikiLeaks from friendly acquaintance to partner.”
Wired wonders if this is a return to power for WikiLeaks.
“If Anonymous continues feeding WikiLeaks with documents, the secret spilling site could return to a prominence that seemed lost due to technical difficulties, legal troubles, in-fighting and public fallings out with media partners …”
Stratfor, meanwhile, is offering all its web content for free — as a make-good for the security breach.
BY JIM FLINK AND STEVEN HSIEH
You are watching multi-source video analysis from Newsy.
It’s a battle of mottos in the nation’s capital.
What’s more important-- In God We Trust? Or Of Many, One -- E Pluribus Unum.
The House cast its vote Tuesday, reaffirming “In God We Trust” as the United States’ official motto.
Virginian Republican Randy Forbes sponsored the resolution, which passed 396 to 9. In a statement, he said the goal is to...
“…confront a disturbing trend of inaccuracies and omissions, misunderstandings of church and state, rogue court challenges, and efforts to remove God from the public domain by unelected bureaucrats.”
To which -- many are saying -- Amen.
Rabbi David Hirschfield says, faith is a crucial component of how Americans define themselves.
In an opinion piece on Fox News, he calls this -- a reaffirmation of that faith.
“‘E Pluribus Unum’” is both a motto and an aspiration. One might even call it a prayer. But whatever one calls it, it calls to us to rise to a great challenge and we should demand that both we and our elected officials rise to it now.”
Fox News immediately posted the names of the nine who voted against the measure, one of which is ordained minister and Missouri Democrat Emanuel Cleaver.
Minnesota Democrat Keith Ellison neither voted for or against the measure, voting “present.”
He tells MSNBC Congress has become distracted from its true purpose.
“We’re out of our lane. We’re in their [The American People’s] private religious affairs, not doing what we’re supposed to be doing, which is getting the economy working.”
The Washington Post calls this -- Bill O’Reilly’s takeover of Congress.
Saying, sarcastically, Republicans are protecting Americans from the liberal enemies of God.
Noting, In God We Trust has always been the official motto, and no one has ever tried to change that.
“Republicans flat-out invent a grave threat to something that isn’t in any danger — the national motto, or God, or Christmas, take your pick — and hope they can bait someone into opposing the crusade.”
July 28, 2011 (2:20)
American Atheists say that "government enshrinement of the cross is an impermissible mingling of church and state."
July 18, 2011 (1:15)
The Vatican has excommunicated Rev. Joseph Huang Bingzhang for being appointed bishop without papal approval.
BY YIQIAN ZHANG
You're watching multisource world video news analysis from Newsy.
The Dalai Lama is retiring -- not from his spiritual role -- but from his political service in the Tibetan government in exile -- saying the Tibetan people need a freely elected leader. The announcement comes on the 52nd anniversary of the failed Tibetan uprising against Chinese rule.
“The Tibetan government in exile now is all set to change its constitution and elect a prime minister who will take over the political offices held by the Dalai Lama at the moment.” News X
By electing a successor, the Dalai Lama is departing from the historic practice of reincarnation. Traditionally, it is only after the death of the current Dalai Lama, that the Tibetan government and High Lamas will set out to find his reincarnated successor. The Chinese government has intervened in that history, and claimed approval rights for the Dalai Lama in the 1950s. So, is this move a step towards greater Tibetan democracy or is the spiritual leader simply playing olitics? The Hindustan Times quotes a Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman as saying, it’s a trick.
JIANG YU: “He has often talked about retirement in the past few years. I think these are his tricks to deceive the international community.”
Others say some good might come out of this. BBC China quotes a Bochum University professor – who says this boils down to a Tibetan-style separation of church and state.
“…(the) Dalai Lama announces his exit in the political realm and didn’t give up his position as spiritual leader. But his action means this medieval, traditional, very out-of-date system of unification of church and state will come to an end. … theoretically it’s advancement.”
But a Time magazine blogger says, The Dalai Lama knows exactly what he’s doing -- and he’s sending a strong message to the rest of the world.
“…a separate political structure will exist in which Tibet’s interests can be looked after by an independent leader. In that case, reincarnation will not be the salient issue. Democracy, as practiced by the Tibetan exile community, will be. How’s that for a deft move by a ‘wolf in monk’s robes?’”
Tibetans will vote for their new prime minister later this month. CNN’s Zain Vergee reports - the Dalai Lama’s announcement wasn’t a surprise.
“He’s going to put forward amendments and he wants a vote to happen on the successor. (FLASH) A lot of people are saying the Dalai Lama has worked so hard for the cause, giant just needs a break. This is just kind of symbolic, really, it’s so important this happening. Actually the Tibetan government in exile has not really made a lot of political progress in terms of what they want over the last few years.”
Finally - The New Yorker’s Evan Osnos predicts - the Dalai Lama might find it difficult to separate himself politically from the Tibetan cause.
“...despite his persistent attempts to renounce his political functions and pave the way for a new generation of leaders who can govern without the emotional and religious baggage he represents, he simply looms too large over the Tibet conflict to be there and not there at the same time.”
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Transcript by Newsy.
BY ALISON SCHUTZ
You're watching multisource US video news analysis from Newsy.
Thou shall not teach religion in public schools. That’s what some in Kentucky are arguing after a bill to offer Bible studies in the state’s public schools passes in the state senate.
WLWT reports this isn’t the first time the Senate resurrected a bill about the Good Book. It failed in the House once before because some thought it was unnecessary.
“In Kentucky - schools already have the choice of offering courses that teach the Bible. What Senate Bill 56 would do, is standardize the coursework. Some educators say a standard for teaching the Bible has the potential to make more school systems inclined to offer the class.”
The bill’s sponsor -- Senator Joe Bowen -- talked to Louisville’s WLKY.
"No doubt about it, the most important book ever written and obviously, it's had so much influence on our society and all of western civilization."
USA Today notes what few sources do: That this bill also “allowed students to substitute their own texts.”
WLKY talked with two Kentucky legislators who aren’t buying into toying with testament teaching.
One told the station he didn’t vote because he thought the bill threw academic credibility out the window.
And another -- a state House rep. -- who thinks the bill is meant to court Christian voters.
REP. MEEKS: "It's like waving meat in front of a dog, OK? You give them what they want."
The course would be an elective social studies course which would require students to know biblical content, characters, poetry, and narratives. The New American questions the history of public education’s rejection of religious and biblical references in holiday and prayer.
Noting some school districts make what they thought were politically correct decisions -- like removing American flags from their classroom.
“Yet, schools have comfortably accepted the role of instructing students in other areas that one should consider private or personal, such as sex education.”
So what do you think? Should separation of church and state stick in public school systems? Or should students be offered standardized schooling on scripture?
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Transcript by Newsy.
Transcript by Newsy
BY UNA LU
You're watching multisource current video news analysis from Newsy.
Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas? This time of year, the salutation you give -- can cause anything from warmth -- to a downright chill. Case in point?
A Christmas battle caused by the name change for the annual parade of lights in Tulsa, Oklahoma. MSNBC reports why a 70-year-old traditional event became a hot spot.
“Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe is threatening to boycott Tulsa’s annual holiday parade of lights unless the organizers put Christmas back into the title. Quote, here’s his words: ‘Last year, the forces of political correctness removed the word ‘Christmas’ and replaced it with ‘Holiday’ instead … until the parade is again named the Christmas parade of lights, I will not participate.’”
Tulsa Council Chair Rick Westcott agrees with Inhoffe, telling the Tulsa World he will vote “NO” on the event’s official application. That could lead to the parade being postponed.
“All of the people who have contacted me are offended by the removal of Christmas from the name, and all of them want it brought back.”
Others say Christians aren’t the only ones celebrating the season. A supporter of the new title comments on Tulsa’s KOKI.
“There is a big discussion on our Facebook page about it. One viewer says, ‘Thanksgiving, Hannukah, Christmas, Kwanzza, and New Years. What’s wrong with having a holiday parade to celebrate the diversity of Tulsa? Come on people. Step out of your tiny boxes…’”
The new sponsor of the parade is a local Irish pub called McNellie’s. In a statement to Tulsa’s KTUL - the pub’s owner is proud of his participation.
“We did so when it looked like no other sponsor was going to emerge and the parade would be in jeopardy. … Our mission has always been to make Tulsa a better place to live, and this seemed to fit right in with our company's mission.”
The Christian Broadcasting Network points to a Rasmussen Reports poll -- finding 69 percent of Americans prefer the greeting “Merry Christmas.”
“And if big business reflects the cultural mood, then this could mean something: A Christian advocacy group, Liberty Counsel, reports that major retailers like Best Buy and Wal-Mart have shifted. They are now allowing their employees to use the ‘Merry Christmas’ greeting.”
So what do you think? Merry Christmas? Happy Holidays? Or does it even matter, as long as the spirit of the season lives on?
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A short visual history of three past peaceful revolutions that have worked.
The Velvet Revolution - Czechoslovakia
The Carnation Revolution - Portugal
People Power - Philippines
Peaceful revolutions in the past have worked quickly, without violence and without the backlash of changing one violent regime for another.
Make your stand!
Organize and demand that the precepts our country was founded on are met.
Demand the Constitution be upheld and followed.
Demand investigations into government and corporate corruption.
Demand our Congress and Senate vote for the People and not private interests.
Demand Separation of Church and State.
Demand a popular vote.
Demand sovereignty be maintained as a highest priority!
Sign petitions en-mass!
Our leaders and leaders to be have too long ignored the principles of the Separation of Church and State that our young country was founded upon.
Looking at country's much older than ours such as Israel, Iran, and others that have not had this separation from within their governments should be a powerful indicator of how our freedoms and rights can be taken if we do not insist on Separation of Church and State in our country's policy making decisions.
Instead, at present, we are in a trend of using religion as a control mechanism, swaying public sentiment in issues, not on the objective and ethics of the issue, but on the religious overtone applied to the issues. Countries have been at war with each other, fell into fascist and dictatorship states for centuries because this simple principle was not observed or replaced with religion to facilitate control over its population.
We can not allow this to continue in our society, or we will lose our society.
Religion is a personal and individual belief to each one of us in a free society.
Lets keep it that way!
Music: Time by Pink Floyd David Gilmour
With the retirement of Justice John Paul Stevens, the U.S. Supreme Court will lose its last Protestant member.