Hugo Chavez, the controversial and fiery socialist president of Venezuela, is dead after losing a two-year battle with cancer. The country’s Vice President Nicolas Maduro announced the president’s death Tuesday. He died at 4:25 p.m. at a military hospital in Caracas.
This year, America lost faith in the youth vote. Headlines bemoaned a lack of enthusiasm on college campuses, deemed youths ignorant on policy, and invalidated their opinions altogether. An October poll by the Pew Research Center said young voters were “significantly less engaged in this year’s election than at a comparable point in 2008.” Pollsters and pundits alike claimed that the youth vote had lost its significance, and youth voters their desire to vote.
They were wrong."
Let’s Have a Toast for Blanche Kelso Bruce. Bruce was the first African-Amercian man to be “elected” and to serve a full United States Senate Term.
Born as the son of a slave and her master, Bruce was granted his freedom by his white father so that he could learn a trade. After many different jobs in various states, Bruce eventually settled in Mississippi, where he became a wealthy landowner in the Mississippi Delta.
In February 1874, Bruce was elected by the state legislature to the Senate as a Republican and served in that capacity until March 4, 1881 when his term expired. Senator Bruce also holds the distinction as being the first African American (and only former slave) to preside over the United States Senate, which he did on February 14, 1879.
This Is Important, You Should Know About It of the Day: President Obama today quietly signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, which contains controversial provisions requiring military custody for any non-citizen suspected of terrorism and affirming the president’s authority to indefinitely detain any supporter of al-Qaeda “or associated forces, irrespective of citizenship.
In a signing statement, the President said he had “serious reservations” about the bill, and criticised lawmakers for interfering with the work of counterterrorism professionals.
“Moving forward, my administration will interpret and implement the provisions described below in a manner that best preserves the flexibility on which our safety depends and upholds the values on which this country was founded,” the statement said.
The Obama administration was successful in striking down a provision that would have removed the ability of the executive branch to override the military custody requirement. Additionally, US citizens and legal immigrants may not be subjected to military custody under the revised bill.
However, an amendment to explicitly exclude American citizens and lawful residents from indefinite detention was rejected by Congress.
“My administration will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens,” Obama said. “Indeed, I believe that doing so would break with our most important traditions and values as a nation.”
The President’s personal stance aside, in addition to creating myriad difficulties for counterterrorism agents working with suspected terrorists to gain information, the NDAA provisions leave the door wide open for future presidents to indefinitely detain American citizens without trial.
And, once again, this is when every Adventist reads this and says, “Told you so.”
Republican: You know, I really think we should—
Republican: But I have—
Republican: See there’s—
Democrat: Now, if you ask me—
Democrat: There’s clearly—
Democrat: If you’ll look at these—
American Populace: *Swings baseball bat and sends both party members flying*
According to the conservation group, a survey of the animal’s natural habitat has yielded no living specimens, leading to the assessment that the last members of the subspecies had died.
In its report, the IUCN blamed “a lack of political support and willpower for conservation efforts” as well as commercial poaching for the Western Black Rhino’s extinction.
It warned that two other rhino subspecies, the Northern White Rhino and the Javan Rhino, were either perilously close to disappearing, or already extinct as well.
A large scale effort by the WWF to save the remaining Black Rhinos is presently underway. Current estimates suggest that a mere 4,240 Black Rhinos remain in the wild.
Watch a black rhino being transported by helicopter to a new range in South Africa’s Limpopo province below: