Maurice Sinet, 86, who worked under the pen name Sine for the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, faced charges of "inciting racial hatred" for a column he wrote in 2009. The piece led to in his dismissal from the magazine. "L'affaire Sine" followed the engagement of Jean Sarkozy, 22, to Jessica Sebaoun-Darty, the Jewish heiress of an electronic goods chain. Commenting on an unfounded rumour that the president's son planned to convert to Judaism, Sine quipped: "He'll go a long way in life, that little lad." A high-profile political commentator slammed the column as linking prejudice about Jews and social success. Charlie Hebdo's editor, Philippe Val, asked Sinet to apologise but he refused. read more
Pictures have emerged online appearing to show Justin Bieber posing in his underwear before he was reportedly bulked up with airbrushing for his Calvin Klein campaign.
The singer surprised fans with appearance when the advertising snaps were unveiled this week, but pictures which have leaked on the Internet appear to suggest Bieber's body was heavily enhanced.
In one snap, Bieber is seen with a much smaller chest and back, thinner arms and legs, a barely-there butt and a dramatically reduced bulge in his underpants.
St. Louis Post Dispatch Declares That Banning Editorial Comments Will 'Elevate The Ferguson Conversation'
There's a growing trend whereby some news websites have started unilaterally declaring the lowly news comment section dead, and therefore have started eliminating the ability for visitors to comment entirely. While it's one thing to just close site comments and be done with it, sites like ReCode, Reuters and Popular Science have been quick to insist that they're killing comments for the good of the "conversation," which sounds so much better than "we closed news comments because we're too cheap and lazy to police bile and spam."
At a time when racial conversation couldn't be more important, the St. Louis Post Dispatch has decided to join the war on comments, this week declaring that the paper would be eliminating comments from paper editorials completely. This is, the paper declares, because it's very much concerned about having a "meaningful discussion":
U.S. health officials on Tuesday released a draft of long-awaited federal guidelines on circumcision, saying medical evidence supports the procedure and health insurers should pay for it.
The guidelines are being published in the federal register Tuesday. For the next 45 days, the CDC will receive public comment before finalizing them next year.
They are likely to draw intense opposition from anti-circumcision advocacy groups, said Dr. Douglas Diekema, a Seattle physician who worked on a circumcision policy statement issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2012.
The thinking on circumcision has swung wildly over the years. It's been practiced by Jews and Muslims for thousands of years, but didn't become common in this country until the 20th century. By one estimate, only 25 percent of U.S. male newborns were circumcised in 1900. It gradually became the cultural norm, and in the 1950s and 1960s surpassed 80 percent.
AlterNet has learned that an amendment to the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would have forbidden US assistance, training and weapons to neo-Nazis and other extremists in Ukraine was kept out of the final bill by the Republican-led House Rules Committee. Introduced by Democratic Representative John Conyers, the amendment was intended to help tamp down on violent confrontations between Ukrainian forces and Russian separatists.
If passed, Conyers' amendment would have explicitly barred those found to have offered "praise or glorification of Nazism or its collaborators, including through the use of white supremacist, neo-Nazi, or other similar symbols" from receiving any form of support from the US Department of Defense.