Outside the Bubble: 12/2 – 12/10

The semester is almost over and that means students are scrambling to finish last minute research papers and presentations, while starting the grueling time of finals studying. Amidst all of the schoolwork, students may not be aware of what’s happening in the world. However, the Red Fox Report has the top news stories of the past week. With the #blacklivesmatter protests, the backlash over Rolling Stone’s article on the rape at UVA, a plane crash in Maryland, the release of the CIA torture report, updates on the Ebola outbreak and the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prizes, the world has been rattled.

  1. #Blacklivesmatter protests spread across the country

On Wednesday, Dec. 3, the grand jury ruled not to indict the New York police officer Daniel Pantaleo for the death of Eric Gardner. This came right after the decision not to indict Darren Wilson for the death of Michael Brown. After the Michael Brown decision, rioting was commonplace in Ferguson, MO, but with the decision of the Garner case, the riots have spread across the country.

Protesters in Lower Manhattan on Dec. 4. Courtesy of Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

Protesters in Lower Manhattan on Dec. 4.
Courtesy of Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

New Yorkers began rioting Wednesday night across the city in Times Square, Brooklyn Bridge, Union Square, Grand Central Terminal and others. Over the past week, the protests have spread across the country Chicago, Atlanta, Boston, Albany, Savannah, Indianapolis and more. The Black Lives Matter movement as it is called is campaigning for an end to perceived racist motivations in police activity. The movement is probably the largest one since the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Click here to watch a video about the protests in Chicago.

  1. Rolling Stone magazine tries to recover their reputation after UVA rape article

Last month Rolling Stone magazine published an article about a gang rape by a fraternity on the University of Virginia campus back in 2012. Originally well-received, the article came under scrutiny after a criticism of it was published last week in the Washington Post. The Post highlighted some inconsistences particularly that the fraternity in question Phi Kappa Psi was not reached for comment, there was no party on the mentioned night and that the writer relied primarily on the girl’s (who remained anonymous) testimony.

The Rolling Stone article about "Jackie" Courtesy of  CNN

The Rolling Stone article about “Jackie”
Courtesy of CNN

Since then, the Rolling Stone has been trying to repair its image, but has continued to commit some blunders. It issued an apology where it said that the magazine’s in trust in “Jackie” (the suspected victim) was “misplaced.” However, this has led people to criticize the magazine for blaming the victim, so Rolling Stone has backtracked and blamed itself for not conducting further research.

The backlash has raised the issue of when and to what extent to believe reported rapes and what degree of sensitivity and anonymity should be used when reporting those stories.

  1. Plane crash in Maryland kills six people

On Monday morning, a small airplane that was on route to the Montgomery County Airport crashed into three houses in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The crash killed six people including the pilot and a mother and her two children whose house was hit.

The pilot was Michael Rosenburg, and he had previously been involved in a minor plane accident back in 2010. The cause of the crash is still not confirmed, but the National Transportation Safety Board announced on Tuesday that a stall light had gone off before the plane crashed.

Find out more here.

  1. Report is released on CIA’s torture methods

On Tuesday, Senate Intelligence Committee released a report on the CIA’s use of interrogation and torture. The report details a wide range of the CIA’s methods including some of its most brutal forms.  From the report, it has been learned that the CIA’s practices were more brutal and widespread than previously thought. Many of the acts were committed in response to 9-11 and the need to find information. Here are seven main points from the report.

Due to this, the report has been met with much discrepancy. While some members of the government stand behind it such as Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif who is the outgoing chair of the committee and Sen. John McCain, R-AZ, others are opposed to it like CIA Director John Brennan.

President Obama has attempted to remain out of the debate, trying to support the CIA, while upholding American values. He issued this statement: “The previous administration faced agonizing choices about how to pursue al-Qaeda and prevent additional terrorist attacks against our country. As I have said before, our nation did many things right in those difficult years. At the same time, some of the actions that were taken were contrary to our values.”

  1. Sierra Leone responds to more Ebola cases with border shutdowns

Starting Wednesday, Dec. 10, Sierra Leone will close its border for two weeks. Until Dec. 23, the Kono district in eastern Sierra Leone will be under lockdown. Residents in the Kono area can still move freely, but no one will be allowed in or out.

The decision was made by the traditional rulers of the area in response to seven cases being confirmed on Tuesday. Over the past year, Sierra Leone has had over 1,500 people die due to Ebola.

This is the second time Sierra Leone will close its borders; the first was for three days and started on Sept. 16.

Further, Wednesday was the third day of the strike by junior doctors for better medical care in case of infection. However, the hospitals are still running smoothly as senior doctors continue to report for duty.

Despite efforts by doctors, Ebola continues to spread in Africa. Courtesy of USAID

Despite efforts by doctors, Ebola continues to spread in Africa.
Courtesy of USAID

  1. Nobel Peace Prizes are awarded to individuals working for children’s rights

Two years after Palestinian teenager Malala Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban to continuing to go to school, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize along with Indian activist Kailash Styarthi for their work on children’s rights, on Wednesday.

Nobel Prize winners Yousafzai and Styarthi Courtesy of REUTERS/CORNELIUS POPPE/NTB SCANPIX/POOL

Nobel Prize winners Yousafzai and Styarthi

Yousafzai is the youngest recipient of the prestigious award, and is well-known across the globe for her campaigns for girls’ rights to attend school.

“I tell my story, not because it is unique, but because it is not,” she said during her acceptance speech. “It is the story of many girls.”

Probably less known is Styarthi is responsible for rescuing 80,000 children from slave labor. Oftentimes, the situation have been in hostile environments and involved violence.

“I’ve lost two of my colleagues,” Satyarthi told the room in Oslo while receiving his award. “Carrying the dead body of a colleague who is fighting for the protection of children is something I’ll never forget, even as I sit here to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.”

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