THM
Israel’s claims that it had no knowledge that hundreds of civilians were sheltered at the Qana base are simply not credible. The decision of those who planned the attack to choose a mix of high-explosive artillery shells that included deadly anti-personnel shells designed to maximize injuries on the ground, and the sustained firing of such shells, without warning, in close proximity to a large concentration of civilians, violated a key principle of international humanitarian law. The particular tragedy at Qana was that this incident was not unique in its general features. As this report indicates, the Israeli military on previous occasions had violated the laws of war by not taking precautions to spare Lebanese civilians from death and injury prior to launching attacks, and indeed by showing an appalling willingness to conduct military operations in which civilians would bear the brunt of the suffering.
From a 1997 Human Rights Watch report on Operation Grapes of Wrath, indicating that the Qana Massacre was not an accident. As anyone familiar with the Qana Massacre specifically, and Israel generally can tell you, Israeli occupation forces clearly meant to kill women, children, and the elderly in Qana.   (via levantineviper)
thelonelyscarecrow:

castiels-time-traveler:

nintendocanada:

mapsontheweb:

Map of the World by Natural Skin Color

i’m really dumbfounded that i never realized skin colour is literally just caused by being closer to or farther from the equator and the resulting sun exposure and skin darkening

actually, its an adaptation. natural selection. people with darker skin are selected for in areas near the equator, where the melanin that causes the darker color protects them from radiation and protects them from skin cancer and other health defects, and because they are healthier they can pass on that trait more. people near the poles have lighter skin because it allows them absorb more of the limited sunlight to convert to vitamin d. 

THIS IS THE THING SOME PEOPLE HATE OTHER PEOPLE OVER.Evolution of melanin levels based on geographical location.

thelonelyscarecrow:

castiels-time-traveler:

nintendocanada:

mapsontheweb:

Map of the World by Natural Skin Color

i’m really dumbfounded that i never realized skin colour is literally just caused by being closer to or farther from the equator and the resulting sun exposure and skin darkening

actually, its an adaptation. natural selection. people with darker skin are selected for in areas near the equator, where the melanin that causes the darker color protects them from radiation and protects them from skin cancer and other health defects, and because they are healthier they can pass on that trait more. people near the poles have lighter skin because it allows them absorb more of the limited sunlight to convert to vitamin d. 

THIS IS THE THING SOME PEOPLE HATE OTHER PEOPLE OVER.

Evolution of melanin levels based on geographical location.

Not only TOMS, but also Starbucks and even Lockheed Martin and Wal-Mart have learned that linking their products to charitable causes makes for good business. We no longer buy only what we need, or even what broadcasts our identity. We buy what makes us feel like good people, and what makes us feel like members of a good, global community. The easy way to look at TOMS is to praise their charitable work. The harder, more troubling way to look at TOMS is to acknowledge it as an example of how corporations have assumed work most often associated with self-identified religious organizations: building community, engaging in charity, and cultivating morals.

TOMS is not alone in its willingness to link progressive social action with consumer spending. In fact, it exemplifies a broader corporate embrace of “conscious capitalism.” Coined by Whole Foods CEO John Mackey, this business model assumes that “the best way to maximize profits over the long-term” is to orient business toward a “higher purpose.” So Starbucks sells coffee to “Put America Back to Work,” the (RED) campaign raises money to fight AIDS, and—in the best example yet—Sir Richard’s Condom Company sends a condom to Haiti for each one it sells (“doing good never felt better”). Meanwhile, Bank of America logos decorate PRIDE banners and Lockheed Martin brags that it is a “champion of diversity.”

The globalization of neoliberal capitalism, and particularly the popularity of “conscious capitalism” as a practice and a discourse, signals a change in the landscape of U.S. religion and politics. “Neoliberalism” most often refers to a loosely cohering set of economic, social, and political policies that (1) seek to secure human flourishing through the imposition of free markets and (2) locate “freedom” in individual autonomy, expressed through consumer choice. But it is also a mode of belonging, where ritual acts of consumption initiate individuals into a global community of consumer agents. Within neoliberal logics of religious and political action, consumer transactions and corporate expansion are recast as forms of spiritual purification and missionary practice. And within conscious capitalism, the “higher purpose” is a world in which all people have a chance (or obligation) to participate in free markets—understood as a multicultural community of consumers.

For Mycoskie—whose title is “Chief Shoe Giver”—building this multicultural community is a theological mandate. He frames his Christian faith as a component of his personal relationship to the company. At the evangelical Global Leadership Conference, keynote speaker Mycoskie answered a question about whether TOMS represents any “biblical principles”: “TOMS represents a lot of different biblical principles. But the one I go back to again and again is the one in Proverbs. Give your first fruits and your vats will be full. … Because we did that and stayed true to our one-to-one model [even amidst financial strain], we’ve been incredibly blessed. We really did give our first fruits.”

In non-confessional settings, TOMS proffers a humanistic version of this prosperity gospel, recast for a neoliberal age. Losing the Bible quotes, the company emphasizes that the “fruits of faith”—in this case, economic success—abound for those who embody the ideals of authenticity, good intentions, and service. Or, “higher purpose” is profitable. TOMS is successful because it creates opportunities for people to live into their own “purpose” through a simple transaction: buying a pair of shoes.

dynamicafrica:

What you need to know about the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

The Ebola virus has been detected in several West African countries. Here’s what you need to know about Ebola and what’s going on (so far):

The back story on this particular outbreak of Ebola in West Africa:

It began early this year in the forested villages of southeast Guinea.

For months, the infected went undiagnosed. It wasn’t until March 23 that the news finally hit the World Health Organization. And by then, Ebola had already claimed 29 lives, the organization reported in a one-paragraph press release.

Since then, the organization has dispatched nine additional updates on a ballooning outbreak that’s received modest notice in the West, but has sent waves of panic across the African continent.

What exactly is Ebola?

Ebola is one of the deadliest virus diseases in humans. Known formally as the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) or Ebola Haemorrhagic Fever (EHF), it is caused by any one of the five known Ebola virus species:

  • Bundibugyo ebolavirus (BDBV)
  • Zaire ebolavirus (EBOV)
  • Reston ebolavirus (RESTV)
  • Sudan ebolavirus (SUDV)
  • Taï Forest ebolavirus (TAFV).

What’s the history of this virus?

Ebola first appeared in 1976 in 2 simultaneous outbreaks, in Nzara, Sudan, and in Yambuku, Democratic Republic of Congo. The latter was in a village situated near the Ebola River, from which the disease takes its name.

Here’s another infographic about Ebola’s history.

How does one get Ebola?

The virus is transmitted to people from wild animals and spreads in the human population through human-to-human transmission. Fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family are considered to be the natural host of the Ebola virus. Consumption of a contaminated animal, close contact with an infected animal or it’s blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids can also lead to infection.

Once a human being is infected and comes in to contact with others, the disease continues to spread.

EVD outbreaks occur primarily in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests.

What happens when you get Ebola?

EVD is a severe acute viral illness often characterized by the sudden onset of fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat. This is followed by vomiting, diarrhoea, rash, impaired kidney and liver function, and in some cases, both internal and external bleeding. Laboratory findings include low white blood cell and platelet counts and elevated liver enzymes.

People are infectious as long as their blood and secretions contain the virus. Ebola virus was isolated from semen 61 days after onset of illness in a man who was infected in a laboratory.

The incubation period, that is, the time interval from infection with the virus to onset of symptoms, is 2 to 21 days.

Which countries has the outbreak occurred in?

Guinea and Liberia have both confirmed multiple cases of Ebola. Ghannareported tests on a suspected case were negative. The WHO says Sierra Leone has ruled out Ebola in its two suspected cases, and two of Mali’s six suspected cases have been cleared. Nigeria’s Minister of Information confirmed there was no outbreak of Ebola earlier this month.

How many people have died so far in this particular outbreak?

As of April 8th, 2014, 98 people in Guinea and 10 in Liberia have all been confirmed dead as a result of Ebola.

Is there a cure for Ebola?

EVD outbreaks have a case fatality rate of up to 90%. So far, there is no specific treatment or vaccine is available for use in people or animals.

What about treatment?

No specific treatment is available. New drug therapies are being evaluated. No vaccine for EVD is available. Several vaccines are being tested, but none are available for clinical use.

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All Africa, All the time.

ETA: I’m not a medical doctor or health practitioner so feel free to rectify anything you see here that’s incorrect.

(top image via usatoday)

johnwaters:

small collection of trans education resources for cis allies who are interested

maarnayeri:

The term “PoC” is not meant to emcompass all brown and black individuals of the world. Its not a general title for every non-white person; that was never its intention. Its a term that derives within western, specifically US context among like-minded racialized individuals who…

The idea that sex is something a woman gives a man, and she loses something when she does that, which again for me is nonsense. I want us to raise girls differently where boys and girls start to see sexuality as something that they own, rather than something that a boy takes from a girl.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (via amescathy)

awkwardsituationist:

photos by mohammad reza domiri ganji in iran of: (1) the dome of the seyyed mosque in isfahan; (2,8) the nasīr al mulk mosque, or pink mosque, in shiraz; (3,4) the vakil mosque in shiraz; (5) the ceiling of the fifth floor of ali qapu in isfahan; (6,10) the vakil bathhouse in shiraz; (7) the imam mosque in isfahan; (9) the jame mosque of yazd

oyesiam1:

Ellen DeGeneres coming out in 1997 x 
Ellen Page coming out in 2014  x

djripley:

tranqualizer:

pulpofiction:

academics should strive to make academia (and especially theory) accessible to as many people as possible. what’s the point of creating knowledge if you make it hard to understand and therefore even harder to share??

it would be helpful first to get academics to stop thinking they are creating knowledge. academics in ivory towers pull knowledge from the bottom up and reframe/exploit until knowledge is top down. 

This is all true.