A California group is attempting to overturn a law requiring state school social studies curriculums to include positive portrayals of homosexuals. Signed into law last year by Governor Jerry Brown, the Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act (S.B. 48) requires that “lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans are included and recognized for their important historical contributions to the economic, political, and social development of California, and … that discriminatory bias and negative stereotypes based on sexual orientation are prohibited in school activities and instruction, and instructional materials,” read a synopsis of the legislation by its chief sponsor, State Senator Mark Leno.
Only weeks after the Muslim Brotherhood broke its promise not to enter a candidate in the upcoming presidential race in Egypt, that nation’s election commission has barred 10 candidates from participating — including the one chosen by the Muslim Brotherhood. Now, the ban of a former official from the Mubarak government and two Islamist extremists has removed the three front-runners in the contest, and with the election only a few weeks away, the ban raises the question of who will be on the ballot that will be acceptable to a majority of Egyptian voters.
As the 2012 election nears, the race for the Hispanic vote becomes more and more critical, as President Obama and his presumed Republican rival Mitt Romney scramble to recruit minority supporters. The Obama campaign, for example, launched on Wednesday a series of Spanish-language advertisements in Florida, Nevada, and Colorado that highlight the President’s purported dedication to boosting federal funding for education.
The rising oil production from North Dakota’s Bakken Formation now equals that of Alaska’s Prudhoe Bay for the first time, according to the Wall Street Journal, due to technological breakthroughs such as fracking.
Norwegian terrorist Anders Breivik, currently on trial for a bomb attack in Oslo and a shooting spree nearby that left more than 75 people dead, has openly admitted to the mass murder. However, in court, the 33-year-old man denied criminal responsibility partly by invoking U.S. foreign policy, claiming the deadly rampage was a “preventative strike” taken in self-defense to prevent the “Islamization" of Norway.
An atheist group has targeted a memorial erected by U.S. Marines in honor of comrades killed in action in Iraq and Afghanistan. The memorial, consisting of two 13-foot crosses, was placed by seven Marines in a remote part of California’s Camp Pendleton in 2003 to honor their fallen comrades. Three of those seven soldiers were later also killed in action, and after a wildfire destroyed their original memorial, other Marines, along with widows of some of the late soldiers, erected new crosses to replace those that were destroyed.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday unveiled its first-ever regulations to curb air pollution from hydraulic fracturing, the drilling process commonly known as "fracking" — or in the industry's parlance, "fracing." By 2015, natural-gas and oil drillers will be forced to invest in new equipment that curtails smog-forming emissions from fracing wells.
Tax Armageddon, or "Taxmageddon," looms on the horizon, as $500 billion in tax cuts will all be expiring at the end of the year. While Americans were hustling on April 17 to complete their taxes, experts were warning about a much larger tax day — January 1, 2013. And if Congress doesn’t take action, American households will be hit with an average tax hike of $3,800, according to the Heritage Foundation.
Last November, President Obama stood before an audience and said government needs to be “responsive to the needs of people, not the needs of special interests.” He added, “That is probably the biggest piece of business that remains unfinished.”
As the Summit of the Americas this week in Colombia was drawing to a close, President Obama touted more regional integration even as increasingly hostile Latin American leaders openly called for change in U.S. and regional policies. Analysts and officials throughout the hemisphere and across the political spectrum said the whole gathering reflected the U.S. government’s growing isolation and waning influence in the region.