Friday News Bites: Rogue Cows, Racial Bias, and More

Today’s newsy roundup inspires a lot of, “WTF is wrong with you?” commentary, but I’ve got some good news, too. Come, gather ’round; let’s talk about what’s happening in the world.

Earlier this week, police in Tallaght area of Dublin removed a seven-year-old girl from her Roma family because she “looked nothing like any of her siblings” by having blonde hair and blue eyes. After DNA tests and the insistence from her family that she was indeed their child, she was returned on Wednesday.

Nah, that doesn’t seem like racism on the Garda officers’ part at all. </sarcasm>

In other Questionable Police Action news: Sonoma County, California deputies shot and killed a boy carrying a replica assault rifle. Now, why replica assault rifles need to be a thing that exist in the first place is another matter, but Andy Lopez was only 13 years old and the shooting occurred out in the open, in the middle of the day. (FYI: The news broadcast video auto-loads when you click through.)

Also in California, a new study conducted by concerned faculty members shows that allegations of racism at UCLA “were rarely investigated and rarely resulted in sanctions.”

In ACA news: “Contractors who worked on the much-maligned US healthcare website have told lawmakers the Obama administration must share the blame for its glitches.” BBC News has the story.

Currently, I already have health insurance, so I haven’t had to deal with the insurance exchange website. However, one day, my family plans to be fully self-employed and we will need some of the benefits the Affordable Care Act is supposed to provide. Still, I must point out that — whomever is at fault — expecting first generation anything to work perfectly is an exercise in madness.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organization says that “air pollution is the leading cause of cancer.”

Okay, I think we need some good and/or amusing news now, yes? Yes.

Hey, Pew Research? When you ask people about watching porn online, you’re probably not going to get very accurate information over the phone. Most people are embarrassed, lying liars when it comes to that particular subject.

Science! A baby born with HIV may be cured, according to doctors who have been treating the now three-year-old girl.

Ooh, Tom Hardy in an Elton John biopic? Color me intrigued.

In COLORMEJEALOUS News: Here’s a list of theaters where you can watch the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special, “The Day of The Doctor,” in 3D. The closest one to me is 800 miles away. *sniff*

Finally, how could I not click this headline? “Rogue cows menace hikers in Calif. state park.”

Two cows stand in a field on fire and the caption reads, "We take great pleasure in causing mayhem."See you next week.

By Sara Habein

Sara Habein is the author of Infinite Disposable, a collection of microfiction, and her work has appeared on The Rumpus, Pajiba and Word Riot, among others. Her book reviews and other commentary appear at Glorified Love Letters, and she is the co-manager of Electric City Creative.

5 replies on “Friday News Bites: Rogue Cows, Racial Bias, and More”

From the minute I saw the news article about the little girl found with a Roma family in Greece who turned out to not be her parents, I knew something like this was going to happen here in Ireland. Another child was briefly taken from their parents in Athlone, then returned. The Gardai even had an ‘expert’ who told them it was extremely likely that a Roma child would have blonde hair and blue eyes. Nope, not racist at all…

My mother had a different perspective, she reckoned if they’re going to base this kind of thing on looks, some poor brown haired kid is getting trafficked no problem. I felt she was missing the point a bit, but I guess I see her reasoning.

Irish people are, generally speaking, extremely racist to Roma and to Irish Travellers. Media commentators have often pointed out that people who would never openly say something racist about, say, a black person, will totally go to town on Travellers in public. I work in a hospital and i had a Roma patient today. It was an absolute shitstorm of conflict between patient, family and staff and it made me very depressed. Sigh.

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