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After manslaughter verdict, minor riots break out in Oakland

Many of the windows on Broadway between 14th and 15th (and some further up) were smashed out. Oakland riots, looting after manslaughter verdict in BART shooting trial (video, photos)
After the verdict was announced, Oscar Grant's family spoke out from outside the courthouse to denounce the verdict. They said that Mehserle should have been convicted of murder. Oakland streets erupted into violence as it had in the days following the shooting in January 2009. Police say as many as 800-1000 people rallied in downtown Oakland after the verdict on Thursday. Several spliter groups ran through the streets of Oakland, setting dumpsters on fire, breaking store windows, and looting. Vandalized businesses included a Foot Locker store, a jewelry store, a pawn shop, a beauty shop, a Sears store, a Subway sandwich shop, and a Whole Foods store. News crews showed looters rushing into the Foot Locker and rushing out with shoes. A woman had minor injuries when she was hit by a slow moving police car. A crew from KGO-TV news was attacked. A photographer was robbed, another KGO photographer was punched in the face and the station's news van's glass was broken.

Harvard Fellow denied entry to the U.S.

Colombian journalist Hollman Morris denied U.S. visa to be a Nieman Fellow at Harvard -- Nieman Journalism Lab
It’s the time of year when the new class of Nieman Fellows starts arriving here in Cambridge, but we thought you should know about an unprecedented situation currently keeping one of our colleagues away. Hollman Morris Rinc�n, an independent journalist in Colombia, won a Nieman Fellowship this spring to study conflict negotiation strategies, international criminal court procedures, and the Rome Statute. I’ll just quote the AP: BOGOTA, Colombia — The U.S. government has denied a visa to a prominent Colombian journalist who specializes in conflict and human rights reporting to attend a prestigious fellowship at Harvard University. Hollman Morris, who produces an independent TV news program called “Contravia,” has been highly critical of ties between illegal far-right militias and allies of outgoing President Alvaro Uribe, Washington’s closest ally in Latin America. The curator of the Nieman Foundation at Harvard, which has offered the mid-career fellowships since 1938, said Thursday that a consular official at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota told him Morris was ruled permanently ineligible for a visa under the “Terrorist activities” section of the USA Patriot Act.

July 07, 2010

27,000 oil wells are ignored and abandoned in the Gulf of Mexico

Enviro Groups Stunned That Govt Ignoring 27K Wells - ABC News
Leading environmental groups and a U.S. senator on Wednesday called on the government to pay closer attention to more than 27,000 abandoned oil and gas wells in the Gulf of Mexico and take action to keep them from leaking even more crude into water already tainted by the massive BP spill. The calls for action follow an Associated Press investigation that found federal regulators do not typically inspect plugging of these offshore wells or monitor for leaks afterward. Yet tens of thousands of oil and gas wells are improperly plugged on land, and abandoned wells have sometimes leaked offshore too, state and federal regulators acknowledge. Melanie Duchin, a spokeswoman with Greenpeace, said she was "shell-shocked" by the AP report and upset that government wasn't "doing a thing to make sure they weren't leaking."

Bay to Breakers race to ban alcohol in 2011

2011 Bay to Breakers to run dry
The Bay to Breakers is going dry. Race organizers plan to announce today that the 100th running of the world-famous, 7.46-mile footrace will take place May 15, 2011 - only this time, "there will be no alcohol, period," race spokesman Sam Singer said. The renewed push for a booze ban comes on the heels of insurance and financial giant ING's announcement that it was dropping out as the race's sponsor after five years of blottoed boozers, bare-naked runners and increasingly bad press. Not to mention irate neighbors. "Bay to Breakers is very concerned that someone is going to get hurt or worse because of the overconsumption of alcohol," Singer said. "Unfortunately, people can't control themselves." Organizers said more than 30 participants had to be taken to hospitals via ambulance after this year's race, most for alcohol-related reasons.

Iran issues new haircut guidelines for Men

Iran offers modest new haircut guidelines for men - Yahoo! News
TEHRAN, Iran – An Iranian fashion organization has issued a new list of culturally appropriate haircuts for men, possibly indicating a new crackdown on male attire after years of strict rules for women, Iranian media reported. Although the Ministry of Culture has yet to officially adopt the styles presented by the Veil and Modesty Festival, the private organization said approval is pending. It would be the first such rules for men's hair styles since 1979 Islamic Revolution. "We introduced the hairstyles to the Culture Ministry," said Jaleh Khodayar, head of the group, telling Iranian newspapers Tuesday that it had been approved informally and an official statement would soon be made. Clothing and hair styles have become a highly visible political statement in Iran since the first stirrings of the reform movement in the late 1990s. Many young women have tested authorities by allowing more hair to spill out from under their head scarves and wearing shorter and tighter coverings. Some men, too, push boundaries with earrings and long hair and ponytails.