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Monday, May 25, 2015

Links - 25th May 2015

Europe's migrant security crisis swells - "The so-called "Arab Spring" was largely interpreted in the West through a media prism which focused on the middle-class Twitter generation in the Arab world. It was believed that a democratic society could be constructed from the ruins of brutal authoritarianism in a matter of months rather than decades. Such hopes proved an illusion."

Cyclist scolds deaf woman for not hearing him - "SHE was almost knocked down by a cyclist riding on the pavement two weeks ago. The cyclist had frantically rung his bell as he approached Noor Faezah Abdullah from behind, and swerved his bicycle at the last minute to avoid her. He then shouted at the visibly stunned 37-year-old and rode off. The experience left her angry and frustrated... Deaf people have been injured in collisions when they did not hear such bicycles approaching or the warning bell, said Alvan Yap, deputy director of the Singapore Association for the Deaf."

Women Now Empowered By Everything A Woman Does | The Onion - America's Finest News Source - "Klein said that clothes-shopping, once considered a mundane act with few sociopolitical implications, is now a bold feminist statement. "Shopping for shoes has emerged as a powerful means by which women assert their autonomy," Klein said. "Owning and wearing dozens of pairs of shoes is a compelling way for a woman to announce that she is strong and independent, and can shoe herself without the help of a man. She's saying, 'Look out, male-dominated world, here comes me and my shoes'"... Whereas early feminists campaigned tirelessly for improved health care and safe, legal access to abortion, often against a backdrop of public indifference or hostility, today's feminist asserts control over her biological destiny by wearing a baby-doll T-shirt with the word "Hoochie" spelled in glitter... The study also cites the act of pumping one's raised fist in a gesture of female solidarity against the oppressive forces of air pressure... Perhaps most remarkably, the mere act of weight gain is now regarded as a feminist act. Though some women express reservations about the negative impact of obesity on one's health, overweight women display a level of assertiveness, or "sassitude," that thinner women lack."

When Must we be Tolerant and When is Someone Asking too much? - "A year later, my friend noticed that there is clearly a separation in the company. There are different utensils and also washing items for Muslims. At one point of time, the Muslims workers even asked if they could have a separate pantry which by now, my friend openly rejected the idea. The workers explained that they felt their religion was not respected by others as they were using the common table cloth to clean the table after eating pork and the taps were oily (presumably lard) when they were using it. They asked if the management could stop other workers from bringing in pork/lard into the pantry and they are okay with other non-Halal food. Now my friend is in a dilemma. While he respect the Muslim's religious obligation, he does not want to impose other's religious restriction and deprived other of their rights. He is wondering where should he stop?"
Addendum: URL changed from http://therealsingapore.com/content/when-must-we-be-tolerant-and-when-someone-asking-too-much as The Real Singapore has shut down

Teen Suspended For Bomb-Themed 'Promposal' Calls Punishment 'Racist' - "A Washington state high school student was suspended this week for wearing a fake bomb in the cafeteria to help him ask a girl to prom, and he believes the punishment he received was unjust"

Michelin-starred Sushi Mizutani rejects booking by Chinese journalist - "A top notch Michelin-starred sushi restaurant in Tokyo on Monday defended its special reservation rules for foreigners after a report in Japan it had refused to accept a booking from a Chinese customer. Sushi Mizutani, which has two of the coveted Michelin stars, told AFP it has an "across-the-board policy" of not accepting bookings by non-Japanese customers - unless they are made through a hotel concierge or a credit card company. "(Non-Japanese) customers may not show up for their reservations," a member of staff at the restaurant said, adding employees do not have the foreign language proficiency to explain requirements to patrons... Mo, a resident of Japan for 30 years who is fluent in Japanese, intended to host three guests at the high-end restaurant, where prices start at 20,000 yen ($168) per person, the Nikkan Gendai tabloid reported. The magazine said that as soon as his secretary - a Japanese woman - told the restaurant Mo's name and contact number, the person taking the booking suddenly changed his attitude and said "some arrangements were necessary" - indicating the reservation was not acceptable... Despite decades of exposure to non-Japanese tourists, many facilities, even in cosmopolitan Tokyo, have difficulties dealing with people who they assume cannot speak the language."
It's not racism if it's... "Japanese cultural practices"

Who Said It: Anita Sarkeesian or Infamous Game Hater Jack Thompson? - "But surely a trendy, cutting-edge third-wave feminist YouTuber who claims to be a life-long lover of gaming can have nothing truly in common with a fusty old religious reactionary who wouldn’t know a controller from his elbow? Surely you need only inspect their published statements to tell them apart? We’ve assembled a short quiz to find out. Can you tell the difference between the Feminist Frequency presenter’s doom-mongering about video games and the hysterical, fact-free rantings of born-again Thompson? Let us know your score."

Gender effects on Internet, catalogue and store shopping - "women have much more positive attitudes toward shopping in general. Women's ratings of catalogue and store shopping were significantly more positive and less negative than men's ratings. The opposite was true for Internet shopping. Women obtain more satisfaction from shopping and are likely to respond positively toward any enhancements to the shopping experience."
In other words, women prefer shopping than men - except internet shopping. Perhaps this is why men buy and women shop

Six PEN Members Decline Gala After Award for Charlie Hebdo - NYTimes.com - "The decision by PEN American Center to give its annual Freedom of Expression Courage award to the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo has prompted six writers to withdraw as literary hosts at the group’s annual gala on May 5, adding a new twist to the continuing debate over the publication’s status as a martyr for free speech... Mr. Carey, in an email interview yesterday, said the award stepped beyond the group’s traditional role of protecting freedom of expression against government oppression. “A hideous crime was committed, but was it a freedom-of-speech issue for PEN America to be self-righteous about?” he wrote. He added, “All this is complicated by PEN’s seeming blindness to the cultural arrogance of the French nation, which does not recognize its moral obligation to a large and disempowered segment of their population”... “There is courage in refusing the very idea of forbidden statements, an urgent brilliance in saying what you have been told not to say in order to make it sayable”... the group’s statement in support of Charlie Hebdo in the immediate aftermath of the attacks had led to a surge in new memberships.“We heard from people who said they had been meaning to join PEN for a few years, and the tragedy was a catalyst”... Salman Rushdie, a former PEN president who lived in hiding for years after a fatwa in response to his novel “The Satanic Verses,” said the issues were perfectly clear. Mr. Ondaatje and Mr. Carey were old friends of his, he said, but they are “horribly wrong.” “If PEN as a free speech organization can’t defend and celebrate people who have been murdered for drawing pictures, then frankly the organization is not worth the name,” Mr. Rushdie said. “What I would say to both Peter and Michael and the others is, I hope nobody ever comes after them.”"

Is Criticizing Affirmative Action Illegal in Chicago? - " Is it illegal to criticize affirmative action in public places in Chicago? The Chicago City Colleges' Board of Trustees thinks so — and it has sued a teachers' union for allowing such "hate speech" (the Board's words) in its newsletter... there's a reason why the Constitution protects even nasty speech: Censorship, once started, acquires its own momentum. It starts with slurs. Then it moves to bans of so-called "hate speech." Then it progresses to speech that "attack[s] affirmative action [and] the concept of diversity itself." All done by well- intentioned public servants, who only have people's "comfort" in mind."
"Hate speech" - what someone else doesn't like

International Dimensions of Domestic Criminal Law: Extraterritoriality and Extradition (PRB 01-17E) - "There are a number of forms of jurisdiction. The most common and universally recognized of these is the territorial principle of jurisdiction, in which every state assumes jurisdiction over the prosecution and punishment of crimes committed within its borders. In addition, under the nationality principle of jurisdiction, states generally assert some extraterritorial criminal jurisdiction over at least certain of their nationals when they commit crimes abroad. States’ global criminal jurisdiction over their military personnel is a common example of this. Some states – particularly, many continental European states – exercise general extraterritorial criminal jurisdiction over all their citizens. More rarely, states may exercise jurisdiction over matters that have a deleterious effect on the state, known as the protective principle of jurisdiction. Offences that fall into this category are treason and espionage. Finally, states may attempt to assert extraterritorial jurisdiction in cases where one of its nationals is the victim of a crime. This is called the passive personality principle of jurisdiction. However, this jurisdiction is even less commonly practised than the other jurisdictional principles."

Island village in Japan will pay for your dates, give you a cow if you moo-ve there - "Mishima also has something in store for eligible bachelors, though. As part of its Bride Searching Project, the city is willing to foot the bill for a portion of your dates, and has led to two marriages among its eight recipients so far. Of course, maybe you’ve already got a romantic partner. But do you have a cow?... It’s a clever plan to reverse some of the town’s outward population flow, not least of all because giving someone a calf instead of a full-grown cow encourages them to stay put for a few years (veal isn’t particularly popular in Japan)."
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