NBA superstar Carmelo Anthony is back to tweeting after saying his Twitter account was hacked over the weekend.
On Sunday Anthony tweeted, "Im back on! My account was hacked. Thanks twitter for getting me str8. Jst finished my first movie in China now im headed back to the States"
Anthony's claim came after a series of tweets were posted to his account, which seemed to indicate Anthony had a Twitter beef with hip hop socialite Kat Stacks.
Various entertainment sites including MediaTakeOut report that Anthony's alleged tweets came after an inappropriate tweet from Stacks to Anthony "hey @carmeloanthony do you taste like caramel?" The suggestive message prompted a back and forth between Anthony, his wife television personality LaLa Vasquez, and Stacks.
Anthony's alleged response, "I got 5k for whoever see @ihatekatstacks and slap the s**t out her pigeon face a**. Real talk. U f**ked with the right one now."
The next tweet, "When u do it record it and send it to me along with name and address. Real talk" included a picture of what appears to be $5,000 posted to the basketball player's Yfrog account.
Stacks a former stripper is well known in the hip-hop world because she regularly discusses her liaisons with rappers, athletes, and others inside the entertainment industry.Though Anthony's tweets were scrubbed from Twitter the drama may not be over quite yet.
Stacks tweeted last night, "See you in court @CarmeloAnthony"
For Anthony's part he's back to sending out messages and communicating his fans as if the incident never occurred.
It's unclear if Anthony faces any repercussions from the league though the NBA has a social media policy; it's aimed at preventing players from tweeting during games from the bench or sidelines. The individual teams govern any other use of Twitter by players.
PITTSBURGH (AP) - Jordan Miles, a black teen who attended Pittsburgh's prestigious Creative and Performing Arts High School, has filed a federal lawsuit saying three white Pittsburgh police officers wrongfully beat him in January, then conspired to file false charges against him and concocted a cover story for their actions.
The city is not commenting on the lawsuit filed by Miles on Monday in U.S. District Court.
Miles claims the officers assumed he was a troublemaker because of his race and beat him without cause. Miles says in the lawsuit he thought he was being kidnapped by the plainclothes officers, and muttered "The Lord's Prayer" out of fear as they allegedly beat him.
Miles, an 18-year-old high school student, hopes to go to college to study crime scene investigation, and played the viola at the performing arts school. Miles was charged Jan. 13 with assault and resisting arrest and his family says he was hospitalized after being hit with a stun gun and suffering head lacerations. He claims that he resisted because he thought the men were trying to abduct him and didn't identify themselves as police.
The officers remain on paid leave. The Associated Press could not immediately reach the officers for comment.
Following an uproar over a policy it said was designed 30 years ago to achieve racial equality, a school district board in a Mississippi town on Friday scrapped a system of student elections where race determined whether a candidate could run for some class positions, including president.
The rules sparked an outcry after Brandy Springer, a mother of four mixed-race children in Nettleton, Miss., complained that her 12-year-old daughter couldn't run for class reporter because she wasn't the right race. Read the original memo
Springer contacted an advocacy group for mixed-race families and the NAACP called for a Justice Department investigation — not surprising in a state with a history of racial tension dating to the Jim Crow era.
By Friday afternoon, Superintendent Russell Taylor posted a statement on the school's website, saying the policy had been in place for 30 years, dating back to a time when school districts across Mississippi came under close scrutiny from the U.S. Justice Department over desegregation.
"It is the belief of the current administration that these procedures were implemented to help ensure minority representation and involvement in the student body," the statement said. "It is our hope and desire that these practices and procedures are no longer needed."
"Therefore, beginning immediately, student elections at Nettleton School District will no longer have a classification of ethnicity," it added. "It is our intent that each student has equal opportunity to seek election for any student office."
Springer, who moved to Nettleton from Florida in April, said her daughter was told the office of sixth-grade class reporter at Nettleton Middle School was available only to black students this year.
Her anger grew when she saw school election guidelines that allowed only whites to run for class president this year. In alternating years, the positions would be reversed so blacks could run for president and whites could hold other positions, district officials said.
Even if the policy is an attempt to ensure black and white participation, Springer said diversity is no longer a black and white issue, with a growing number of mixed-race children, Hispanics and other ethnicities attending school together.
'Ethnic diversity' now embraced, school says
The school agreed, saying it the statement that it "acknowledges and embraces the fact that we are growing in ethnic diversity and that the classifications of Caucasian and African-American no longer reflect our entire student body."
Springer is white. Her two older children, including the sixth grader, are half Native American. Her two younger children have a black father.
"How are they supposed to be classified?" she asked.
"My main concern is that the object of school is to prepare people for life. An employer could never do this: Advertise a position for a white man only or a black man only," she said. "This is not a lesson we want to teach."
When Dr. Foster arrived at the historically black Florida A&M campus in Tallahassee in 1946, football halftime shows around the nation generally offered a rendition of the home team's fight song and a smattering of John Philip Sousa marches.
Dr. Foster introduced shows that infused black popular culture into his routines, blending contemporary music, often jazz or rock, with imaginative choreography, his green-and-orange uniformed band members carrying their instruments at a 45-degree angle, legs bent to the same angle.
College and high school marching bands around the nation drew on the Florida A&M style.
"It's gotten to the point where I can't remember the last time I saw a halftime show that featured traditional marches," Fred Tillis, emeritus director of the University of Massachusetts fine arts department, told The Florida Times-Union in 1998.
Dr. Foster said there was "a psychology to running a band."
"People want to hear the songs they hear on the radio; it gives them an immediate relationship with you," he told The New York Times in July 1989, when the Marching 100 headed to Paris, having been selected by the French government to represent the United States with renditions of James Brown at the parade marking the French Revolution's bicentennial. "And then there's the energy. Lots of energy in playing and marching. Dazzle them with it. Energy."
Sometimes his band moved at a step every three seconds or so, what he called the "death cadence" or "death march," then zoomed to six steps a second.
It didn't exactly march.
"It slides, slithers, swivels, rotates, shakes, rocks and rolls," as Dr. Foster once put it. "It leaps to the sky, does triple twists, and drops to earth without a flaw, without missing either a beat or a step." It often became an animation show, simulating palm trees with branches swaying or an eagle flapping its wings.
Dr. Foster became known on campus as the Law, for what could be an intimidating presence, but he began with only 16 bandsmen in 1946. He soon called his musicians the Marching 100 because he envisioned reaching that number at some point.
The Marching 100 has grown to 400 or so musicians, drum majors and flag-bearers. It has played at the Super Bowl, presidential inaugurations and the Grammy Awards and in nationally televised commercials.
How did D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty lose the love of so many black women -- the most faithful and forgiving constituents a black man in public office can have? The answer: He worked at it, went out of his way to snub and disrespect even the most revered sisters of distinction.
They include Dorothy I. Height, president emeritus of the National Council of Negro Women, who died this year; Maya Angelou, the poet; Susan L. Taylor, editor of Essence magazine; Oracene Price, mother of tennis greats Venus and Serena Williams; and former D.C. first lady Cora Masters Barry, founder of the Southeast Washington Tennis and Learning Center.
The list goes on and on.
A year ago, two meetings were scheduled between Fenty, Height and the others. The women were concerned that he was using a legal ruse to take the tennis center from Barry and turn the operation over to one of his fraternity brothers.
Both meetings were canceled at the last minute, with Fenty claiming that the women called it off and the women saying they were snubbed by him.
Whom are you going to believe?
"Dr. Maya Angelou and I were scheduled to meet with the mayor on the 28th of August and on the 31st of August," Height, who was 98 at the time, told reporters afterward. She didn't mention the other women lest they get caught up in petty D.C. politics. "It didn't happen because the meetings were canceled. Well, we were disappointed."
You hear that word a lot about Fenty. It's as if black women had let down their natural guard against disappointment and allowed themselves to be fooled by a man they thought really cared about them.
"I just don't understand him," said Joan Ellis Tillman, 76, a longtime grass-roots political activist, sounding bewildered. "I worked hard for Fenty, and as soon as he became mayor he starts acting like he doesn't know me."
Complaints about Fenty's abrasive personality must be put in context. For many black women, his dismissiveness is not just a personal affront but a quality reflected throughout much of his government; his arrogance is just the coldness of his policies personified.
With about three weeks before the Democratic primary, Fenty's approval rating among black women is at an all-time low. And you just can't win a citywide race if enough of them are aligned against you -- no matter how big the white turnout may be.
It never crossed Corey Robinson's mind to leave New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward. Not even after Hurricane Katrina breached the city's levees in 2005, filling his home and every other on his street — Flood Street, it so happens — with fetid water that wallpapered every room with mold and wrecked the plumbing. A construction contractor, Robinson, 30, was determined to rebuild and keep his wife and four children in the community that he calls "our home, our habitat, our roots." "You just don't walk away from that," he says as he stands outside his rebuilt, newly painted and beautifully detailed historic shotgun house.
But Robinson is one of the Lower Ninth Ward's exceptions. Across Flood Street stand other lovely but abandoned and boarded-up houses, some still bearing the ominous X's on their facades that disaster officials used to indicate they were uninhabitable. On a blighted property next door, grass and weeds have grown taller than August corn. "We're giving the Lower Ninth another chance," says Robinson. "But you don't see too many of your neighbors anymore. It hurts a lot."
Five years after Katrina, the Lower Ninth remains a world of hurt. Predominantly African-American and working class, it was the district hardest hit by a storm whose biblical floods, it's now agreed, resulted largely from negligence on the part of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the agency that built and was supposed to maintain the surrounding levees. And yet, post-Katrina, the once thriving community is also the hardest hit by seeming government indifference. Only a fifth of the Lower Ninth's 20,000 residents have returned to live since 2005, in no small part because of inadequate reconstruction funding compared to aid that homeowners in other New Orleans neighborhoods have received, and because of the slow pace of long-promised infrastructure and other community development projects.
That casts a long shadow over any celebration of the Big Easy's revival. Even though New Orleans landmarks like the French Quarter may be humming again, Lower Ninth stalwarts insist that the city's comeback has to be measured by how fully their two-square-mile (3.3 sq km) pocket returns to life. "Until the Lower Ninth Ward is back on its feet, the New Orleans recovery has failed," says Patricia Jones, a resident and director of the Neighborhood Empowerment Network Association (NENA), a nonprofit working to restore the area.
To some, it's a miracle that the Lower Ninth, home to famous New Orleans musicians like Fats Domino, is still making any noise at all. Katrina, possibly the worst natural disaster in U.S. history, wrecked the Gulf Coast from Louisiana to Florida, caused almost $100 billion in damage and killed 1,800 people. But one of its most enduring images is the Lower Ninth submerged by floodwaters — and the moonscape that was left when they finally subsided. Government officials strongly hinted that the community should not be rebuilt. The costs seemed too daunting and, just as important, "Lower" was an all too apt description of the area's below-sea-level geography — a tract surrounded by the Mississippi River, the Industrial Canal and Lake Borgne — making it vulnerable to future deluges.
But new and stronger levees are nearing completion. And a determined core of residents argues that abandoning the Lower Ninth would be an even bigger betrayal of blue-collar New Orleans than the one suffered at the hands of the Army Corps and then the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), whose notorious dysfunction exacerbated the catastrophe. "You get the feeling they're just waiting for all us so-called poor people to leave so they can turn the place into a resort area or something," says resident Henry Holmes, 76, who owns a popular local restaurant, Holmes One Stop. "But you can't have New Orleans without the Lower Ninth Ward. The neighborhood's going to come back eventually."
In the chaotic days after Hurricane Katrina, an order circulated among New Orleans police authorizing officers to shoot looters, according to present and former members of the department.
It's not clear how broadly the order was communicated. Some officers who heard it say they refused to carry it out. Others say they understood it as a fundamental change in the standards on deadly force, which allow police to fire only to protect themselves or others from what appears to be an imminent physical threat.
The accounts of orders to "shoot looters," "take back the city," or "do what you have to do" are fragmentary. It remains unclear who originated them or whether they were heard by any of the officers involved in shooting 11 civilians in the days after Katrina. Thus far, no officers implicated in shootings have used the order as an explanation for their actions. Only one of the people shot by police – Henry Glover – was allegedly stealing goods at the time he was shot.
Still, current and former officers said the police orders – taken together with tough talk from top public officials broadcast over the airwaves -- contributed to an atmosphere of confusion about how much force could be used to combat looting.
In one instance captured on a grainy videotape shot by a member of the force, a police captain relayed the instructions at morning roll call to cops preparing for the day's patrols.
"We have authority by martial law to shoot looters," Captain James Scott told a few dozen officers in a portion of the tape viewed by reporters. Scott, then the commander of the 1st district, is now captain of the special operations division.
Another police captain, Harry Mendoza, told federal prosecutors last month that he was ordered by Warren Riley, then the department's second-in-command, to "take the city back and shoot looters." A lieutenant who worked for Mendoza, Mike Cahn III, said he remembered the scene similarly and would testify about it under oath if asked.
Mendoza and Cahn said in separate interviews that Riley made the remarks at a meeting at Harrah's casino, where police had established a command post. Mendoza quoted Riley as saying: "If you can sleep with it, do it," according to a document prepared by prosecutors and provided to lawyers defending police officers recently charged with federal offenses.
Riley categorically denied telling officers they could shoot looters. "I didn't say anything like that. I heard rumors that someone else said that. But I certainly didn't say that, no."
TV Guide Magazine: Throughout the season, will you go back to your favorite moments on the show?
Winfrey: There will be some of that. We have nearly 5,000 hours [of footage], and we broke up into different teams of people who have over the past eight, nine months looked at every single show.
TV Guide Magazine: Wow. Impressive.
Winfrey: That's what I say, too. [Laughs] They have reviewed and documented every single show, so we know what to revisit. I plan on going back to Forsyth County [in Georgia]. That's the town where there were no black people allowed and a guy was using the N-word with me. I'm going to do a tour of the new Forsyth County with him. I'm also going to go back to Williamson, West Virginia, where the town wouldn't allow a young man who had AIDS in the grocery store. His name was Michael Sisco. He's since died.
TV Guide Magazine: Is it true that you're trying to locate the people who were on your first show and in the audience for your first national show?
Winfrey: That is true. Our record-keeping wasn't as solid then as it is now. [Laughs] Those were the days when I would go out on the street and ask people to come in: "Come in! It's air-conditioned."
TV Guide Magazine: How did Oprah evolve into a show that is about inspiration and aspiration?
Winfrey: Yesterday I was looking at a skinhead show [we did in 1988], and I said to my staff, "That's the show that caused me to do television differently." What I learned from that is you cannot allow yourself to be a vehicle that promotes the energy of hatred in any form. That was life-changing for me.
TV Guide Magazine: Is there a secret to creating a great talk show?
Winfrey: The secret is authenticity. The reason people fail is because they're pretending to be something they're not. And even those who are not in alignment with my value system, people like Jerry Springer, he works because he's real. If you can find what the passion is and figure out a way to express that in an authentic and entertaining way, you have a chance at success.
MIAMI — Overlooked and underestimated on the campaign trail for nearly two years, Miami Congressman Kendrick Meek on Tuesday easily beat back a profligate challenge from real estate mogul Jeff Greene to run away with the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate.
Meek, 43, is the first black Senate nominee from Florida and the only major black Senate candidate nationwide. If elected, he stands to become the Senate's lone African American.
The Associated Press called Meek the winner just 15 minutes after the polls closed in Pensacola, Florida's western-most voting outpost.
"There were those that counted us out, but you counted us in," a beaming Meek told hundreds of supporters at the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood. He thanked everyone from God to President Barack Obama to "school bus drivers that I greeted this morning at 4:30 a.m. that know what it means to have to live paycheck to paycheck."
But Meek has little time to savor defeating a brash billionaire who vowed to spend "whatever it takes." He wakes up Wednesday somewhat bruised, very broke, and polling in last place behind a national Republican superstar, former House Speaker Marco Rubio, and the sitting governor, Charlie Crist.
Crist, who left the Republican Party four months ago to run as an independent, has about $8 million stashed away. Rubio has about $4.5 million.
Greene, 55, said Tuesday night that he would endorse Meek and contribute to his campaign.
"While this effort may have fallen short, we must work hard to ensure that the failed policies that will be pursued by the two Republicans in this race . . . cannot come back to power in Washington," Greene said in a concession speech in front of only about 35 people at the West Palm Beach Marriott.
Former Miami Mayor Maurice Ferre, who had a shoestring campaign with about $220,000, ran a distant fourth.
Greene spent about $25 million out of his own pocket, more than four times as much as Meek. He pummeled the Miami congressman with television spots and mailings casting him as a do-nothing, "corrupt'' career politician tied to a massive development scandal. Meek sought $4 million in federal budget earmarks for developer Dennis Stackhouse, who had paid his mother $90,000 as a consultant.
The development proposed for one of Miami's poorest neighborhoods was never built, and Stackhouse was charged with making off with about $1 million in public and private loans. Meek repeatedly said he didn't know about Stackhouse paying his mother, former U.S. Rep. Carrie Meek, and that he sought the federal money to bring jobs to struggling Liberty City.
For weeks, the attacks seemed to be working as Greene surged ahead of the longtime front-runner.
But Meek countered with his own negative campaign in the homestretch, condemning Greene for making a fortune betting on massive mortgage foreclosures. Voters said they were also turned off by Greene's partying past and his carpetbagger status as a registered Democrat and Florida resident only since 2008.
ATLANTA – The U.S. Education Department says nine states and the District of Columbia will receive money in the second round of the $4.35 billion "Race to the Top" school reform grant competition.
Department spokesman Justin Hamilton says the winners are: Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island and Washington, D.C. The amounts of the grants are expected to be announced later.
The competition has instigated a wave of reforms across the country, as states passed new teacher accountability policies and lifted caps on charter schools to boost their chances of winning.
The aim of the historic program is to reward ambitious changes to improve schools and close the achievement gap.
WASHINGTON — Shirley Sherrod, the Agriculture Department official ousted during a racial firestorm last month, declined Tuesday to accept an offer to return full-time to the agency.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said that Sherwood did agree to work with the agency in a consulting capacity in the future to help it improve its civil rights performance. She told reporters she did not think she could say yes to a job "at this point, with all that has happened." There had been indications that Vilsack, who apologized to Sherwood for pushing her out, had offered her a position in the Office of Advocacy and Outreach, which works in the civil rights area.
"It is a new position," she said. "I look at what happened now. I know he has apologized and I accept that. A new process is in place and I hope that it works. ... I think I can be helpful to him and the department if I just take a little break and look at how I can be more helpful in the future," Sherrod said.
She did say she was "tempted" to take the position.
Vilsack said that "Shirley has unique opportunities here."
Vilsack said he had tried in vain to get Sherwood to return to the department.
The veteran department employee was forced out earlier this year when an excerpt of a speech she gave several years ago was posted by a conservative blogger on the Internet, remarks that seemed to show Sherwood giving shortshrift attention as a local agriculture to a poor white farmer's plea for financial assistance.source
It has been said, "Nero fiddled while Rome burned." Are we not overly preoccupied with this controversy, now being used in various ways by grandstanding politicians? It looks to me like the politicians are "fiddling while the economy burns."
The debate should have provided the conservative defenders of property rights with a perfect example of how the right to own property also protects the 1st Amendment rights of assembly and religion by supporting the building of the mosque.
Instead, we hear lip service given to the property rights position while demanding that the need to be "sensitive" requires an all-out assault on the building of a mosque, several blocks from "ground zero."
Just think of what might (not) have happened if the whole issue had been ignored and the national debate stuck with war, peace, and prosperity. There certainly would have been a lot less emotionalism on both sides. The fact that so much attention has been given the mosque debate, raises the question of just why and driven by whom?
In my opinion it has come from the neo-conservatives who demand continual war in the Middle East and Central Asia and are compelled to constantly justify it.
They never miss a chance to use hatred toward Muslims to rally support for the ill conceived preventative wars. A select quote from soldiers from in Afghanistan and Iraq expressing concern over the mosque is pure propaganda and an affront to their bravery and sacrifice.
The claim is that we are in the Middle East to protect our liberties is misleading. To continue this charade, millions of Muslims are indicted and we are obligated to rescue them from their religious and political leaders. And, we're supposed to believe that abusing our liberties here at home and pursuing unconstitutional wars overseas will solve our problems.
The nineteen suicide bombers didn't come from Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan or Iran. Fifteen came from our ally Saudi Arabia, a country that harbors strong American resentment, yet we invade and occupy Iraq where no al Qaeda existed prior to 9/11.
Many fellow conservatives say they understand the property rights and 1st Amendment issues and don't want a legal ban on building the mosque. They just want everybody to be "sensitive" and force, through public pressure, cancellation of the mosque construction.
This sentiment seems to confirm that Islam itself is to be made the issue, and radical religious Islamic views were the only reasons for 9/11. If it became known that 9/11 resulted in part from a desire to retaliate against what many Muslims saw as American aggression and occupation, the need to demonize Islam would be difficult if not impossible.
VINEYARD HAVEN, Mass. – Michelle Obama will join former first lady Laura Bush in ceremonies marking the ninth anniversary of the United Flight 93 crash in Pennsylvania during the Sept. 11 attacks.
Mrs. Bush had previously confirmed her participation, saying we "must never forget the brave sacrifice of these extraordinary men and women."
Passengers aboard the flight are believed to have struggled with its hijackers before the jet crashed in a field near Shanksville, Pa., killing all aboard.
Mrs. Obama's press office confirmed her role as the first lady vacationed with her family on Martha's Vineyard.
"Their show of support honors the lives and memories of these 40 heroes and everyone we lost on September 11th," said Neil Mulholland, head of the National Park Foundation. The group is helping build a memorial at the Shanksville site.
Harold Dow has died unexpectedly.
The veteran CBS News correspondent died Saturday. He was 62.
Dow leaves behind a wife, Kathy, and three children, Danica, Joelle, and David.
His career at CBS spanned almost 40 years. A five-time Emmy winner and a correspondent for 48 Hours since the program's inception, Dow covered everything from the kidnapping of Patty Hearst to American involvement in Bosnia.
A Peabody and Edward R. Murrow Award winner, Dow was the first network news reporter to interview O.J. Simpson after the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. According to the CBS press release announcing his passing, Dow narrowly escaped one of the falling twin towers during his coverage of the September 11 terror attacks.
When 48 Hours premiered as a television news series on CBS in 1988, it took its name from the 1986 documentary 48 Hours On Crack Street. Dow's work appeared in the documentary and he was part of the series since its debut.
In a recent interview with his hometown newspaper, Hackensack, New Jersey's The Record, Dow talked about his work:
"I've traveled all over the world. I've seen things few people in life get a chance to see up front and personal," Dow said in his distinctive, deep voice. "I covered the tsunami in Sri Lanka. I was in South Africa when Nelson Mandela was freed. I traveled with him across the United States when he gave his tour. There's just moments, places I've been that I think truly changed my life."
Before joining CBS, Dow broke the color barrier in 1968 as the first African American reporter in Omaha, Nebraska. It was a feat that earned Dow and the news director that hired him death threats.
Dow told the The Record that being a black journalist carried a special weight for him, a man who grew up picking cotton and tobacco during summers on his grandmother's farm:
"To know what it's like in that hot sun, working from sunup to sundown, forbidden to be able to read or write for hundreds of years. ... and that's what you do as a journalist, the thing they say you can't do," said Dow. "It's all connected for me."
Sharia law is "the path that must be followed by a Muslim".
It brings together elements from the Qur'an and the Hadith (a collection of the deeds and words of Mohammed), plus judges' rulings from Islam's first centuries. It was fixed by about the 10th century, and contains detailed instructions for practically every aspect of life.
In the West, it is most famous for its penal code: the prescribed punishments for sexual offences, which include stoning; for theft, which include amputation; and for apostasy, for which the punishment is death.
Much more important for most Muslims, however, are the parts of sharia that relate to the status of women, to contracts and to family law.
These include provisions that allow men several wives and that enshrine, in law, the inferiority of women.
Women can be divorced merely by their husbands reciting "I divorce you" three times; their testimony is worth less than that of men; and they cannot marry a non-Muslim man - although it is permissible for a Muslim man to marry a non-Muslim woman. source
Here is some information that was provided by the Washington Post:
Islam makes no distinction between the sacred and secular, thus Islamic law, or sharia, governs not only religious affairs but also daily ones, from criminal justice to banking and business ethics. Traditional sharia, for instance, dictates that Muslims should only invest in ventures that hew to Islamic doctrine. Since the Koran forbids drinking, investing in a winery is not permitted.
Sharia literally means "path" or "path to water," referring to the path a Muslim must follow to salvation. The law comprises multiple elements: most important is the instruction of the Koran, considered the literal word of God; next is the sunnah, or the model of how one should live set by the Prophet Muhammad; the final components are the ijma, or consensus of Islamic scholars, and the qiyas, a sort of reasoning by analogy that extends the law to issues not explicity addressed in the holy texts (for example, extending the drinking prohibition, drugs may also be assumed to be forbidden).
Most Middle Eastern countries have some degree of sharia law integrated into their legal codes. Mostly these measures deal with issues of personal-status, such as marriage and divorce, while sharia guidance on criminal law has largely been tempered with legislation that is seen as more modern or secular; generally adulterers are not stoned to death in the contemporary Middle East. Even so, Saudi Arabia and Iran claim to implement sharia fully in all matters.
There are four main schools of Sharia law:
|Hanbali: This is the most conservative school of Shari'a. It is used in Saudi Arabia and some states in Northern Nigeria.|
|Hanifi: This is the most liberal school, and is relatively open to modern ideas.|
|Maliki: This is based on the practices of the people of Medina during Muhammad's lifetime.|
|Shafi'i: This is a conservative school that emphasizes on the opinions of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad.|
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- An upcoming video game starring Michael Jackson is set to be "Bad."
Video game publisher Ubisoft announced Wednesday its dancing-and-singing "Michael Jackson The Experience" game will feature such Jackson hits as "Bad," ''Beat It" and "Billie Jean."
The title is scheduled to be released later this year for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Wii, as well as the handheld consoles Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable.
Other tunes for the game centered on the late King of Pop include "Earth Song," ''The Girl Is Mine," ''Who Is It" and "Workin' Day And Night."
"Michael Jackson The Experience" will be among the first to use Kinect and Move, the new gesture-recognition systems for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
The game's songs were announced at the Gamescom convention in Cologne, Germany.
Over the last year, I traveled across the country seeking the sources of right-wing outrage and anger in the Obama era as I researched my new book -- The Backlash: Right-Wing Radicals, High-Def Hucksters and Paranoid Politics in the Age of Obama -- that will be published at the end of the month. What I discovered was fear -- some of it innate and much of it whipped up by high-def hucksters on TV and in talk radio and even in the corridors of political power in America. Much of that fear centered on one simple fact: That America is increasingly becoming a non-white-dominated country. While many Americans take no issue with that, the prospect of an America with an increasingly non-Caucasian face is a deeply disturbing one to millions of people -- people for whom a unified and traditional culture is a source of solidarity and comfort, even -- according to some sociologists -- a bulkhead of immortality.
In the mid-2000s, an anti-immigration frenzy took root across right-wing talk radio. It seemed largely a matter of entertainment and most likely changing the subject, since the George W. Bush presidency was at low ebb because of Iraq and Katrina. The increasingly paranoid conversation about the threat from brown-skinned, Spanish-speaking people grew in a way that was completely disconnected from realities, that immigrants were growing the economy in places like Arizona and Nevada, that crime rates among immigrants were quite low, and that these arrivals were paying more in taxes than they received in services.
But the bottom line was that for many, reports that whites will be a minority of Americans by the year 2050 carried the shill ring of an alarm bell. But this concern about the submersion of a dominant white culture in America spiked prematurely in 2008 with the political rise of Obama. In researching the book, I spoke with many conservative voters who talked of their "discomfort" the first time they watched Obama speak on television, who said that in particular they were alarmed at the future president's use of the specific word "transformation." These voters were egged on by political "leaders" like vice presidential candidate Palin, who didn't just voice traditional policies differences with the Democrat but accused him of "palling around with terrorists."
It is no surprise that by mid-2009 I was hearing from the leader of the anti-Obama group the Delaware 9-12 Patriots that the 44th president of the United States "is absolutely not American" while his neighbors were screaming at town hall meetings: "I don't want this flag to change. I want my country back!" These rank-and-file citizens were often echoing what they heard in a 24/7 right-wing media bubble of ratings-driven irresponsibility -- outlandish neo-McCarthyite allegations that Obama had Commies and Maoists working in the West Wing, Glenn Beck's notorious claim that the president has "a deep-seated hatred of white people" and, perhaps more tellingly, of "white culture," and most recently radio's Rush Limbaugh's bizarre charge that Obama is probably the "best anti-American president the country's ever had."
Ja'Van Duley, Devean Duley
Helen and Adriane Duley are hoping their story will save someone else in desperate need of help.
Shaquan is charged with the murder of 18-month-old Ja'Van Duley and 2-year-old Devean Duley. Officers say she confessed to suffocating them with her hand, putting them in a car, and finally placing that car in the Edisto River along Shillings Bridge Road just outside Orangeburg.
Helen says her grandchildren were gifts from God.
"They were happy children, energetic, they were boys," Helen says. "Devean I think he was gonna play some kinda sport. Javon, he was the only one of my grandchildren I gave my full name too; I call him Gerber baby, he had that kind of smile"
She and her other daughter, Adriane, say the boys had a specific purpose.
"My nephews lost their lives, but their living wasn't in vain," says Adriane Duley. "I pray that through her story this won't happen again; those children are gonna save lives and so is she."
They believe Shaquan is a loving mother and a person who needed help.
"There's nothing you would ask Shaquan that she wouldn't do," Helen says. "I'm asking the people not to judge her for what she's done, but understand that we all have problems and never know when things might get out of hand."
Orangeburg Sheriff Larry Williams says he believes Shaquan was overwhelmed by the responsibility of motherhood.
"That's not normal behavior," Adriane says. "You have to be physically well to take care of your children but you also have to be mentally well."
This is a day the Duley's never wanted to face, but while the national media spotlight shines on their family, they hope save someone whose story has yet to be told.
"If you have a problem, please seek help, there are resources out there, talk to somebody," Helen says.
With Shaquan's five-year-old daughter left to raise, Helen says this is only the beginning of a long road, but she's pacing herself with help from a power greater than her own.
"There's a deep hurt, this is a very dark time in our lives but because of my faith in God, I feel the victory," Helen says.
The family has an account set up at Bank of America to help them cover funeral costs. You can donate by asking for the Duley memorial at any branch location.
The funeral for Ja'Van and Devean is set for Friday at 11 a.m. at St. Paul Baptist Church in Orangeburg. source
The papers, Ronal Serpas says, are like a "disgustingly vile novel," outlining the murders of two unarmed civilians, the woundings of four others and a vast coverup involving 11 current and former officers accused in the deadly 2005 shootings in the chaotic aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
So far, five of the officers have pleaded guilty to conspiracy, while the fates of six others — indicted last month on charges ranging from murder to obstruction of justice — are pending in the fatal assaults on Danziger Bridge.
Now more than 90 days into his tenure as the city's top cop, Serpas says the reality of his department is even worse than the "insidious" accounts he began reading in the documents just before he was appointed superintendent in May.
The court records accuse officers of killing innocent survivors of the storm, then covering up their actions by creating fictional witnesses and holding a secret meeting to get their stories straight during investigations of the incident. Yet Serpas says the troubles run even deeper: More officers have been linked to other crimes, and new charges are likely.
Five years after Hurricane Katrina — when some New Orleans officers deserted their posts and film crews caught others looting stores — police officials, community activists and civil rights advocates say the storm exposed systemic failures in a law enforcement agency that had been decaying for years. Many of the city's institutions have rebounded from the storm, but the police department seems to have sunk to new lows.
With the department's credibility in tatters, the federal government has launched an unprecedented intervention to salvage the agency at the urging of the city's new mayor and police superintendent.
"It is clear that nothing short of a complete transformation is necessary and essential to ensure safety for the citizens of New Orleans," Landrieu wrote.
The mayor's unusual candor quickly won endorsement from Serpas. "Deadly accurate," the police superintendent says. "Complete, systemwide failure."
Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez, chief of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, says Landrieu's entreaty has launched the "widest-ranging review ever" of a local police force by the federal government.
Already, the department is the subject of eight federal inquiries into alleged wrongdoing by police. At least 18 current or former officers have been charged with federal crimes so far this year, 11 in connection with the Danziger shootings. Four face possible death sentences if convicted.
Apart from the criminal inquiries, Perez said the Justice Department is reviewing the city's police operations to try to reduce crime and restore public trust in an institution shaken to its core.
Violent crime, like police corruption, has menaced the city for years, linked in large part to the trafficking of illegal drugs.
In the survey, about one-third of Americans correctly say Obama is a Christian, down from 48% who said so last year. In all, 43% say they do not know what religion Obama practices.
The survey "shows a general uncertainty and confusion about the president's religion," said Alan Cooperman, associate director of research with the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.
The survey of 3,003 adults was taken July 21-Aug. 5, before Obama endorsed a Muslim group's right to build a mosque and Islamic cultural center near the site of the 9/11 attacks in New York City. Those comments, made last weekend, added to the firestorm over the location of the mosque.
On Wednesday, Obama said at an event in Ohio that he has "no regrets" about his comments.
Responses in the poll tended to fall along ideological lines, Pew found. About one-third of self-described conservative Republicans said they believe Obama is a Muslim.
"Those who say he is a Muslim overwhelmingly disapprove of his job performance, while a majority of those who think he is a Christian approve of the job Obama is doing," said a Pew report about the poll. Pew found that "even among many of his supporters and allies, less than half now say Obama is a Christian."
Obama has spoken frequently about his Christian faith, including at the annual National Prayer Breakfasts and at a White House event celebrating Easter this year with Christian leaders. He receives a daily devotional prayer sent to his BlackBerry device.
As a candidate, Obama participated in a forum led by prominent Christian pastor Rick Warren, in which he said his "starting point" is "Jesus Christ died for my sins, and that I am redeemed through him."
Cooperman said one possible reason for confusion over Obama's religion is that people may not perceive the president as being as forthcoming about the subject compared with President George W. Bush. The Pew survey, however, showed that 48% say Obama relies on his religious beliefs the "right amount" when making policy decisions, compared with 53% for Bush.
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – A Colorado man who founded a school for street children in Haiti acknowledged Wednesday that he sexually abused several, wrapping up a case in which prosecutors said he manipulated the boys with promises of food and shelter and threatened to expel them if they refused.
Douglas Perlitz, 40, pleaded guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court in New Haven, Conn., to travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct, a charge that carries up to 30 years in prison. As part of a plea deal, he admitted to engaging in illicit sexual conduct with eight children.
Perlitz is a former Connecticut resident who now lives in Eagle, Colo. He was charged last year with enticing boys at the Project Pierre Toussaint School in Cap-Haitien into sex acts. Prosecutors say Perlitz, 40, withheld benefits and threatened to expel the boys if they spurned him.
"This defendant preyed on impoverished and powerless street children in Haiti, enticing them with significant benefits such as food, shelter, clothing and education, only to exploit his position of trust and sexually abuse the boys under his care," said U.S. Attorney David Fein.
"I commend the extraordinary strength and courage of the minor victims in this case who came forward and spoke out about the abuse that they suffered in order to protect others from harm and so that justice would prevail," Fein said.
Perlitz's lawyer, William Dow III, said after the hearing that his client looked forward to presenting his side of the story at his sentencing.
Perlitz founded the school in 1997 when he lived in Connecticut, and authorities say the abuse went on for nearly a decade.
U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton last month dismissed the charges on a technical issue, saying he couldn't be prosecuted in Connecticut because the crimes weren't committed there.
The judge noted that Perlitz flew to Haiti from airports in New York and Florida but took no flights from Connecticut. She did leave the door open for prosecutors to refile the charges elsewhere, and authorities did just that in New York City shortly after Arterton's ruling.
Perlitz, though, waived his right to a trial elsewhere and agreed to a plea deal. Dismissal of the refiled charges will be sought at his sentencing.
The original indictment said Perlitz received funding from a religious organization to found Project Pierre Toussaint. The program initially served mostly street children as young as 6 and expanded to include a residential program for high school-age children. Children were offered meals, sports, classroom instruction and access to running water for baths.
Volunteers and staff members were scared to come forward with the allegations, the indictment said, because Perlitz controlled the school's operations and "utilized the fear of unemployment and the difficult economic situation in Haiti."
Prosecutors said they plan to mention additional victims at the sentencing hearing Dec. 21. Federal guidelines call for a prison term of about eight years to 20 years, and he must register as a sex offender when he leaves prison. He remains detained on bail.
He wore a beige prison jumpsuit during the hearing and smiled at his lawyers when he entered the courtroom. Most of his comments repeated the wording in the charge against him.