October 27th – The Day’s Most Fascinating News

Doctor, Doctor

“I told him my name is Ahmed Eid, I’m director of surgery. Then I made a joke, I guess. I said, ‘An Ahmed stabbed your son, and an Ahmed is going to save your son.'” WaPo’s William Booth and Ruth Eglash visited Hadassah University Hospital in Jerusalem to find a glimmer of Middle East hope by way of two doctors known among the staff as Bert and Ernie. The hospital is one of a diminishing number of places where Jews and Palestinians still work together for a common good; in this case to save lives. One doctor explains the clarity associated with saving the life of a person who attacked one of your own: “I don’t think I can be criticized for saving a life, It is holiest of holies. I just don’t understand the question when someone asks me why I saved the life of an attacker.”

+ Today’s Israeli and Palestinian teens were born after the assassination of Yitzak Rabin. The vacuum left by the absence of a hope for peace has been filled with images of violence and hate, both on the streets and on social media.


You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat

“We scientists love to sit at our computers and use climate models to make those predictions. But to really know what’s happening, that kind of understanding can only come about through empirical measurements in the field.” In this case, the “field” is the ice turning to rivers on the front line of climate change. The NYT with a sadly beautiful interactive piece: Greenland Is Melting Away.


Island in the Scheme

“Dangerous and provocative.” That’s how Chinese officials described America’s decision to move a warship “within 12 nautical miles of a Chinese-built artificial island at a center of regional dispute over maritime territory and sea routes.”

+ BBC: Q&A: South China Sea dispute.


South Bye Southwest

South By Southwest Interactive conference organizers have decided to cancel two panels on harassment in gaming citing “numerous threats of on-site violence related to this programming.” (They’ve also announced they won’t allow bacon or any other processed meats to attend their conference. Too risky.)

+ To me, this seems like an absolutely horrible decision. Buzzfeed agrees. They’ve announced plans to pull out of the conference.


Absurd is the Word

The idea of a person wearing a diaper as they work the line in a chicken processing plant isn’t very appetizing. And neither are the other details from a recent report on working conditions in the $50 billion chicken industry, where at some companies, the turnover is close to 100%.

+ With all the recent news about processed meats, let’s take a detour and look at some recent findings when it comes to vegetarian hot dogs. Oh, whoops. It turns out that’s also a story about meat (and oddly, human DNA).

+ “I’d rather die than give it up.” Argentina reacts to the latest WHO report.


Driving Test

“One day, while you are driving along, an unfortunate set of events causes the car to head toward a crowd of 10 people crossing the road. It cannot stop in time but it can avoid killing 10 people by steering into a wall. However, this collision would kill you, the owner and occupant. What should it do?” MIT Tech Review on why self-driving cars must be programmed to kill. (In the above scenario, I’m pretty sure the car needs to know how many Twitter followers each of the potential victims has before making a final decision.)


I Have a (Short) Dream

A number of studies have all concluded that there is a massive disparity when it comes to — of all things — sleep. National Journal’s Brian Resnick on an unexpected challenge in the quest for racial justice: The Black-White Sleep Gap.


Teacher, Leave Them Parents Alone

“A lot has been written about adults having real time off from the workday, and that it improves creativity and productivity. We’re doing the exact opposite with kids. It’s insanity.” Philly Inquirer reports on a growing movement: Parents and students saying no to homework. (Back in my day, kids were independent enough to say no to homework on their own.)


Hello Again Hello

“I was very conscious not to make 21 again. I definitely wasn’t going to write a heartbreak record ’cause I’m not heartbroken, but I probably won’t be able to better the one I did, so what’s the point?” Ahead of her first album in a few years, Adele Adkins reflects on life and what it’s like trying to follow-up one of the biggest records ever.

+ Is Justin Bieber cool yet? Let’s check the latest Bieber Approval Chart from GQ.


Bottom of the News

WaPo provides an oral history of the greatest Vine of Kirk Cousins’s life. There’s something remarkably enjoyable about this short video.

+ Quartz: Chewbacca is arrested in Ukraine while driving Darth Vader to the polls.

+ The Economist updates its living chart on James Bond: Booze, Bonks, and Bodies.

+ When the Alpaca bubble burst.

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