GBA: Your News, From Evolvefest to Kanye West
The Good: We’ll go ahead and start with the good news. Here are this week’s highlights.
Local heroes: Every once in a while, someone does a good deed that restores one’s faith in humanity, if only for a moment. Joel Schulze, local delivery driver in Madison, WI played an integral part in saving a girl from the man who sexually assaulted her and getting him arrested. On his final delivery for the night, he noticed two people flagging him down for a ride. While he normally wouldn’t pick up strangers at 3AM, something made him turn around. Upon dropping the couple off, the man got out of the car but the young woman slammed the door behind him, staying in the car, and asked Schulze to “just drive.” He asked if the woman needed to get away and she said yes, he then took her to the local UW-Madison Police Department where the investigation began. The man has been arrested. Another local hero makes the world a better place. Thanks, Mr. Schulze.
Dismantling Evolvefest: Sensible Reason recently played an integral part in putting a stop to the constant hate speech that Evolvefest was posting on their Facebook page. Our founder, Greg Sarafan, posted a heated article exposing the festival as homophobic, anti-Semitic, extreme and close minded. The post caught some attention and a Boycott Evolvefest page went up, gathering thousands of ‘likes’ within the hour. Now, the venue that has held Evolvefest for the past 8 years has dropped the event, leaving the festival without a venue and at a dead end. This just goes to show that love will truly prevail, and hate speech will never fly when festival culture is involved. “Namaste, bitches.”
Arrest Made in UVA Student’s Murder: After being arrested almost 4 months ago and charged with abduction, Jesse Matthew Jr. has now also been charged with first degree murder. Back in the fall, 18 year old University of Virginia student Heather Graham went missing. She was found dead soon after. Matthew was the last person seen with her the night of her disappearance, known from security cameras in the area. After a further investigation, Matthew’s involvement seemed clear. While Graham’s death is truly a tragedy, the good news is that justice is being served and the students at UVA can rest a little easier.
The Bad: Sometimes we forget how fragile our everyday lives can be. Here is the not-so-good news.
Vanishing Monarchs: Butterflies have always been seen as majestic and beautiful creatures. Delicate, unattainable, and almost sacred, the butterfly is extremely necessary to our entire ecosystem. Pollinators such as butterflies, birds, small animals, and bees help to create and maintain the natural world in which we live. The Monarch butterfly is easily the most recognizable species of butterfly in North America. Unfortunately, a recent study has shown that Monarch butterfly numbers have dropped in the past 25 years…by almost a billion. Due to pesticide control of milkweed, the Monarch’s natural home, their numbers have dropped by just shy of a billion. On the bright side, since these numbers have been released, about $3 million is in the works for maintaining their existence. Nature should always get the upper hand, and we need to take better care of the world we live in.
Newsweek Twitter Hack: Newsweek’s Twitter feed was hacked by the now emerging #CyberCaliphate. This hashtag has been seen before in another hack that threatened the Pentagon. For 14 minutes, these “cyber jihadists” took control of the page, changing the profile picture and adding a headline of “Je Suis IS.” The Tweet posted by the hackers threatened Obama and his family, stating “Bloody #Valentine’s Day Michelle Obama! We’re watching you, your girls, and your husband!” After regaining control of the profile, Newsweek apologized to readers for any offensive material seen. The way we rely on our cyber lives and information is getting to a point where someone never has to physically harm you or even be in the same country to threaten your well-being. It makes one doubt if such a dependence is healthy.
John Stewart Leaves The Daily Show: They say that all good things must come to an end. Earlier this week, everyone’s favorite “fake” news anchor has announced that he will be leaving his show after more than 15 years. Jon Stewart got a little choked up while announcing that he will be leaving The Daily Show later this year. His contract is up and it’s time for something new. While few can top his awesome and hilarious demeanor, and the show may have fewer viewers during the transition, we’re sure that all is not lost and Mr. Stewart will excel in whatever he decides to do in the future.
And The Awkward: Take it as good news, take it as bad news, but uh… here ya go.
Kanye West: Back in 2009, Kanye West pulled the ultimate f*ck you move when he interrupted Taylor Swift‘s acceptance speech at the VMA’s to let the world know that he thought Beyoncé should have won the award for best female video. At this year’s Grammy awards, Beyoncé again missed out on an award, this time album of the year. Taking home the prize was Beck. As Beck began his acceptance speech, Kanye pretended to step up to the mic for a second f*ck you move, but laughed in jest and turned back to return to his seat. While it’s awesome that we can all laugh about the 2009 incident, including Beyoncé and Jay-Z, it’s pretty clear that Kanye’s need for constant attention is reaching pathetic heights. Kick rocks, Kanye, no one cares.
Snorting Chocolate: Most people like chocolate. Even those who are not huge sweets fans or even chocolate fans can appreciate a good indulgence every once in a while. It releases endorphins and helps create a better mood. Most people choose to consume their chocolate by eating it, because that’s the only way, right? Um, apparently wrong. Chocolate lovers without a budget are now using an innovative device to snort specially made chocolate powder to extend their chocolate experience. Instead of consuming large amounts of chocolate, we can just snort little bits and breathe in chocolate bumps all day…yeah, this is nuts. P.S. The kits go for over $100 dollars.
Zombie Cat Custody Battle: Last month, Bart the cat was involved in a traffic accident and buried for dead. 5 days later, the feline resurfaced alive and “well!” He was taken to the local humane society for jaw surgery and to have one of his damaged eyes removed, but never returned to his owner. The organization decided not to return Bart (named zombie cat by social media) to his owner after learning more about the “circumstances leading up to his burial.” Bart’s owner was not allowed to see him or know the condition of his recovery, so she’s fighting back. Bart’s owner’s home was investigated for neglect, but the two dogs there were found in good condition and there is no further investigation needed. We can only hope that Bart will return to a loving home where he can happily live out his remaining eight lives. Good Luck, Bart.