Friday News Bites: #Mizzou Protests, SeaWorld Changes + More

This week’s collection of links has nothing to do with the holiday implications of red coffee cups. Instead, we have some LGBTQ+ news, bookish things, and one woman who is not about to be a cooperative Trump spectator. Read on!

After continued protest and criticism that the school was not doing enough towards bigotry on campus, University of Missouri President Tim Wolf resigned, shortly followed by chancellor of the Columbia campus, R. Bowen Loftin.

The Nation has some analysis of what all this means, and why the protests were effective.

However, black students are still in danger, and police have since arrested two people for making threats via social media. Protestors are criticizing the university’s response to those threats, compared to how they reacted to bomb threats in the past.


Ben Carson, in addition to his Biblically-themed ridiculous statements, has admitted he did not actually have a “full scholarship” to West Point.

NPR has a handy chart on where all the 2016 U.S. Presidential candidates stand on immigration.

If you’ve somehow been wrangled into sitting at a Donald Trump rally, and you know you’re on camera? Why yes, I think pointedly reading Citizen by Claudia Rankine is the way to go.

Right now Catalonia is looking to secede from Spain. Parliament has voted for it, and they expect the process to take 18 months. Stay tuned.


On a related note to the Mizzou protests and elsewhere, here’s a good Storify-ed conservation via The Establishment that asks:

How can we better serve voices routinely marginalized by the mainstream media? What needs to change . . .  and what already is changing? How do we silence trolls while amplifying the voices of those so often bullied by them?

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes better known as the Mormon church) has said that they will not welcome the children of same-sex couples into their congregations.

And in case you thought, “Who cares, why would a person want to join the church anyway?” Know that suicide hotlines received a spike in calls from LGBTQ+ teens after the church made this announcement.

After seeing the reaction to Houston not choosing equal protection for all its residents, Dallas, Texas, decided to add nondiscrimination policies for all its city employees:

The nondiscrimination charter amendment that was voted on Tuesday, known as Proposition No. 4, also added color, age, marital status, genetic characteristics, national original, disability, and military or veteran status to the list of classes protected against discrimination. Previously, the City Charter prohibited discrimination against city employees based only on race, sex, and political or religious opinions or affiliations.

Since the Supreme Court declared same-sex marriage legal across the land, a new Gallup poll estimates the number of same-sex married couples has increased from 780,000 people to 972,000. I know a few of those people!

OUT magazine has released this year’s OUT 100, and this is the first time a sitting president has appeared on the cover of a LGBTQ+ publication. President Obama received their ‘Ally of the Year’ honor.

Deadpool director Tim Miller wants it to be very clear: “Deadpool is pansexual.”

And those of us somewhere in the middle of the Kinsey scale just celebrated with the highest-of-fives.

Captain Jack Harkness smiling

In Other News:

SeaWorld is phasing out its orca shows, after much controversy surrounding the treatment of the whales. The show will be replaced with a conservation-oriented orca exhibit beginning in 2017.

There’s a new animal species to report: The coywolf. It’s part-wolf, part-coyote, and it’s very interesting to scientists.

Facebook is censoring links to new competing social network, Tsu. And now hopefully that doesn’t mean this whole post will no longer show up on Facebook.

Starbucks is providing free college tuition to spouses and children of veterans. So that’s pretty cool. (Veterans themselves, you may recall, get school paid for through the G.I. Bill.)


Somehow I missed that Wallander author Henning Mankell died last month. He was 67.

Gunner Hansen, who played the original Leatherface in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, died this week. He was 68.

Legendary San Francisco stripper Carol Doda has died, aged 78. She led a pretty interesting life, most recently as a lounge singer.

Terminally ill Star Wars fan Daniel Fleetwood, who was allowed to see the new film early, died on Tuesday. He was 32. [auto-playing video]

In Entertainment:

A painting by Carl Kahler, “My Wife’s Lovers,” depicting 42 cats, sold at auction for over $800,000. Amazing.

This evening, A Tribe Called Quest are reuniting for a performance on The Tonight Show. No word yet if this means there will be any future shows.

The World Fantasy Award will no longer be modeled on author H.P. Lovecraft, after a campaign of people pointed out how his racism does not represent all the possibilities and authors of science-fiction and fantasy.

This year’s Doctor Who Christmas special will be screened in U.S. movie theaters on December 28th and 29th. (And now I’m contemplating driving 90 miles away, which is the closest theater to me showing it.)

And finally, a disturbance in an Oregon art gallery turned to be some wily bandits!

Raccoon art bandits!
(via Newport police)

Until next time, friends.

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