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Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
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Unarmed black man killed by white Phoenix officer

Source: USA Today

PHOENIX — The facts surrounding Rumain Brisbon's death — the ones that could be agreed upon as of Wednesday evening — follow a narrative familiar to a nation still reeling from the racially charged police incidents in Ferguson, Mo., New York City and elsewhere.

In Phoenix on Tuesday evening, a white police officer who was feeling threatened used lethal force on an unarmed black man. The incident left the officer unharmed and Brisbon, 34, dead with two bullet wounds in his torso at a north Phoenix apartment complex.

Phoenix police quickly released a detailed account of the killing for the media on Wednesday morning in what officials said was an effort to promote transparency, especially in light of the unrest that has played out in Ferguson and New York City following the deaths of unarmed Black men at the hands of White officers. But portions of that account have already been challenged by some witnesses and community activists who say that the officer's use of force was excessive and that Brisbon's death was unwarranted.

Shortly before 6 p.m. on Tuesday, officers were in the area of Interstate 17 and Greenway Road for a burglary investigation when a resident of an apartment complex told them that men inside a black Cadillac SUV were engaged in a drug deal, said Sgt. Trent Crump, a Phoenix police spokesman.

Read more: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/12/04/phoenix-police-unarmed-man-killed-by-officer/19878931/

Thursday Toon Roundup 3: The Rest





Thursday Toon Roundup 2: Idiot Party

Thursday Toon Roundup 1: Body on Camera

Da Nang, Vietnam, is TripAdvisor's top emerging destination for 2014

Da Nang, Vietnam, and Wildwood, N.J., lead the pack of TripAdvisor's more than 50 "destinations on the rise" in 2014.

The website's Traveler's Choice Awards in this category reflect "unheralded destinations across the globe that are receiving rave reviews from travelers worldwide," chief marketing officer Barbara Messing said in a statement released Tuesday.


Georgia town bans mosque in controversial vote

By Patrick Howell O'Neill on December 03, 2014

A small Georgia city has voted to ban an Islamic group from renting a retail space and opening a temporary mosque in the city even after the landlord agreed to the deal.

The City Council of Kennesaw, a city of about 30,000 people in north Georgia, ultimately voted down the Muslim group’s request 4-1.

The issue has engendered a lot of tension in the town and from critics outside of it. To give you a small idea of the intensity of the attitudes at play, here’s the video’s description from the man who recorded this week’s City Council vote: “The scumbag lawyer for the terrorist org. says he will sue... good luck with that.”

Attorney Doug Dillard called the decision unconstitutional and “a blatant attack on first amendment rights." He says the group will continue to fight and is strongly considering a federal lawsuit against the city.



Sometimes we talk about offensive GOP crap. Well, HERE is a real doozy of a GOP Crap Toon

Hits all the lows

What was Earth's first predator and when did it live?

Colin Barras
Around the world right now, thousands of animals are about to die. The game is up for untold numbers of deep-sea fish, mountain-dwelling hares, subterranean earthworms and high-flying songbirds. They are all seconds away from becoming dinner for predators like lions, eagles and sharks.

But when did this carnage begin? Have predators stalked the Earth since the origin of life itself? Or was our primordial planet once a Garden of Eden where species lived in peaceful co-existence?

The truth is, no one actually knows for sure. But evolutionary biologists have learned enough about the history of life on Earth to begin the hunt for the first predator. Their work suggests it was about as far removed in appearance from today's killers as it's possible to imagine.

Before we pick up the trail, it might help to spell out what a predator is. According to most biologists, predation must involve the death of one living thing at the hands (or teeth, or claws) of another, which has to gain some nutritional benefit from the kill. A lion is a predator because it kills and eats a gazelle, but the gazelle is not a predator, because it doesn't have to kill the grasses it eats.



Etchings on a 500,000-year-old shell appear to have been made by human ancestor

By Michael Balter 3 December 2014 1:00 pm 0 Comments
In 2007, Stephen Munro got the shock of his life. The archaeology graduate student was studying mollusk shells gathered more than 100 years ago on the Indonesian island of Java, where an early human ancestor, Homo erectus, had roamed at least 1 million years ago. As he studied photographs of the shells, Munro spotted one apparently engraved with a pattern of zigzag lines. “I almost fell off my chair,” he says. That’s because the oldest known engravings date back 100,000 years and were made by modern humans—the only species thought to be capable of making abstract designs.

Now, after 7 years of work on the shells, Munro and colleagues have confirmed their observations. They also report that one of the shells was used as a tool of some sort, a finding that would expand the known toolmaking capabilities of H. erectus, which was thought to have made only simple tools out of stone.

“If correct it certainly pushes back in time the evidence for marking objects in a way that arguably could be considered evidence for symbolic activity,” says Curtis Marean, an archaeologist at Arizona State University, Tempe, who was not involved in the study. But he points out that the Java site, known as Trinil, was excavated in the 1890s using “quite primitive” archaeological methods and that no one has reexamined the location using modern techniques. That means, he says, that “the observation is essentially devoid of context.”

Mindful of this kind of criticism, archaeologist and team leader Josephine Joordens of Leiden University in the Netherlands says her group took its time answering a series of questions about how the shell came to be engraved as well as when it might have happened. First, the researchers looked at how the shells accumulated at Trinil in the first place. Munro had focused his research on about 166 specimens of the freshwater mollusk Pseudodon, collected by Dutch paleoanthropologist Eugène Dubois at the site where he found now-famous H. erectus fossils. Studying cigar boxes full of mollusks from the site that are now housed in Leiden, Joordens and other team members found that a third of the shells had holes right where a muscle that keeps the shell closed is found. These holes were apparently made by humans using shark teeth, also found at the site, as tools to open the shells so they could eat them; when team members did their own experiments trying to open shells with sharks’ teeth, they got a very similar pattern of holes.



Wednesday TOON Roundup 3: The Rest






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