GBA – Your News, From Climate Change to Pet Tattoos
The Good: We’ll go ahead and start with the good news. Here are the weekend highlights.
Dutch Launch Intelligent Bike: The Dutch are known for many things, bicycles are probably among the top 5, it’s the way most people get around. These days, cars come with tons of bells and whistles that make them more safe, “smart cars.” Cameras, sensors, alarms, automatic brakes, the list goes on. Engineers in Holland decided to equip a bicycle with some of these same luxuries, cameras in the back, sensors in the front, and a screen for monitoring it all. It makes riding a lot safer. Their “intelligent bicycle” is making an impact already, especially among the elderly. This awesome idea could change the way we think about bikes forever.
World Climate Deal: 194 countries came together in Lima, Peru to come to an urgent agreement on the world’s climate problem. For the first time in history, all countries agreed that something needed to be done. What comes next is still to be decided, but the agreement is a step in a huge direction. The fact that, as humans, world leaders actually treated a situation with that in mind, that they thought globally, makes one smile, if only for a moment.
Festival Pre-sales: As the holidays are upon us the ultimate gifts are coming out of the woodwork, and fast! Just as swiftly as a child’s favorite toy sells out on Black Friday, 2015 festival pre-sale tickets seem to be flying from the digital shelves as fast as they’re announced. If you attended a festival this summer, it’s time to start checking websites and announcements. Often, those who attended a festival previously get first pick for next year’s spots. Don’t let the holidays get you down, get excited for all the fun you’ll be having as soon as it starts to heat back up!
The Bad: Sometimes we forget how fragile our everyday lives can be. Here is what’s going on elsewhere.
Gunman in Pennsylvania: An ex-marine in Pennsylvania locked in a vicious custody battle with his ex-wife apparently snapped in early hours Monday. He took a gun and proceeded to go to three different homes, killing his ex-wife, her grandmother, her mother, her sister, her niece, and his ex-brother-in-law. He attempted to kill his nephew as well, but he survived and is in very serious condition at the moment. The gunman’s daughters were found safe in a neighbor’s home nearby. Then, the police lost him, launching a day-and-a-half manhunt. He was found dead in a Pennsylvania forest by apparent self inflicted knife wounds. The entire situation is gruesome and tragic, leaving multiple families destroyed and an entire town in terror for the entirety of the manhunt. Our hearts go out to the victims of this terrible ordeal.
Sandy Hook Families’ Lawsuit: A group of relatives of the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting victims are attempting to sue the manufacturer of the gun used in the shooting. While a law has been created protecting gun companies from being sued for the misuse of their products, this group is using a different angle, claiming that the firearm should never have been sold to a civilian based on what it was originally made to do, kill humans. So, while the manufacturer cannot be held responsible for gun misuse, they can still be tried for selling the wrong kind of firearm. The gun used in the Sandy Hook shooting was made for military battle, made for shooting other people. It was never made for hunting or target practice, so the plaintiffs are saying they should have known better than to sell it to anyone other than the military. Some say that the lawsuit is already dead in the water, some are saying that this angle could change gun laws forever. We can never know until the verdict arrives.
Mass Grave in Syria: The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights recently reported that a mass grave of over 230 bodies has been uncovered, the suspected victims of Islamic State militant violence. The grave was found in the Deir al-Zor province. Believed to be the bodies of members of the al-Sheitatt tribe, the 230+ count brings their death toll in the 900’s against the Islamic State for their oilfields, with their efforts under pressure from U.S. air strikes. The Islamic State is also battling the Syrian president’s forces for one of the area’s last remaining military bases. It makes one wonder if the fighting will ever stop.
And The Awkward: Take it as good news, take it as bad news, but uh… here ya go.
New York State Bans Pet Tattoos: We’re sure a few insane pet owners in New York state shed a little tear this weekend, as pet tattooing and modification was banned. Why you’d think that your pet would like your company after making them endure a tattoo or piercing is beyond me, but… I’m sorry? Pet owners especially should believe that animals feel, too, and maybe they should be able to speak before agreeing to a lifetime decision such as a tattoo. What if they don’t like it 3 years from now?!
42 Years Overdue: A man in Rochester, NY borrowed a statue from his local library as a child. 42 years later, he finally returned it! He said that the statue represented those close to him, and took comfort in it. The library never charged the man for the immensely overdue statue, stating that it was nice he took such comfort in something he found at the library.
Miss World 2014: It baffles me that beauty pageants still happen, let alone are still televised and popular. But hey, to each their own. While you still got it, right? Anyway, this year’s Miss World pageant returned to its home city of London for the 64th annual event. This year’s winner was Miss South Africa, Rolene Strauss. After competing all year and making it to the final contest, the winner lives in London during her reign and basically travels around as the pretty face of the Miss World Charity organization. Seems a little lackluster to work really hard, giving everything you have, to be “pretty” for a year… Good Luck, Miss Word.