Monday, February 11, 2008

Hot Links: NY Times & Washington Post

Here are some great links worth checking out. Please note that all the links have been saved via permalink, meaning you can access them at any time, even once the page has expired! If you find any hot links you'd like to see featured, please alert me via email: More links coming soon!

- NY Times -

"Bridezillas on a Diet"
Women take extreme measures for their "special day." But is it worth it?
Excerpt: More than 70 percent of brides-to-be want to lose weight before their wedding day, according to a new study from Cornell University. To reach the perfect wedding-day weight, more than one-third of them use extreme dieting tactics such as diet pills and fasting. And while most of us buy clothes that fit, about one in seven brides-to-be buys a bridal gown that is one or more dress sizes smaller than she normally wears.

"U.S. Seeking Execution for 6 in Sept 11 Case"
Could death penalty be a possibly in this long-pending case?
Excerpt: Some officials briefed on the case have said the prosecutors view their task in seeking convictions for the Sept. 11 attacks as a historic challenge. A special group of military and Justice Department lawyers has been working on the case for several years. Even if the detainees are convicted on capital charges, any execution would be many months or, perhaps years, from being carried out, lawyers said, in part because a death sentence would have to be scrutinized by civilian appeals courts.

"Proportion of Immigrants in U.S. Rises"
Study adds to recent discussions on immigration and puts presidential nominee support from immigrant communities in perspective.
Excerpt: The center estimates that the total population will grow to 438 million in 2050, with immigrants accounting for 82 percent, or 117 million, of the increase. But because births in the United States to Hispanic and Asian immigrant parents will play a progressively greater role in population growth, according to the analysis, by 2050 a smaller proportion of both groups will be foreign born in than is the case today.

"Scientists Find New Receptor for H.I.V."
With more findings like this, is a cure within our reach?
Excerpt: For years, scientists have known that H.I.V. rapidly invades the lymph nodes and lymph tissues that are abundant throughout the gut, or intestines. The gut becomes the prime site for replication of H.I.V., and the virus then goes on to deplete the lymph tissue of the key CD4 H.I.V.-fighting immune cells. That situation occurs in all H.I.V.-infected individuals, whether they acquired the virus through sexual intercourse, blood transfusions, blood contamination of needles and syringes, or in passage through the birth canal or drinking breast milk. The findings appear to provide some, if not the main, answers to how and why that situation occurs.

"A Caribbean Cornoer of Brooklyn, Fighting to Survive"
Could gentrification be the culprit for cultural loss in NYC?
Excerpt: After winning a one-year reprieve from their landlord — the City of New York — the market’s 13 merchants may find themselves forced out by June if the city moves forward with a plan to demolish the building and replace it with housing. Although the merchants have been offered buyouts and the option of relocating their shops to a strip of storefronts in a public housing development, they want to stay put.

"U.S. Universities Rush to Set Up Outposts Abroad"
Education globalizes as institutions of higher learning open overseas.
Excerpt: In a kind of educational gold rush, American universities are competing to set up outposts in countries with limited higher education opportunities. American universities — not to mention Australian and British ones, which also offer instruction in English, the lingua franca of academia — are starting, or expanding, hundreds of programs and partnerships in booming markets like China, India and Singapore.

"Kenya's Middle Class Feeling Sting of Violence"
Could Kenya's conflict lead to a brain drain?
Excerpt: The well-established middle class here is thought to be one of the most important factors that separate Kenya from other African countries that have been consumed by ethnic conflict. Millions of Kenyans identify as much with what they do or where they went to college as who their ancestors are. They have overcome ethnic differences, dating between groups and sometimes intermarrying, living in mixed neighborhoods, and sending their children to the best schools they can afford, regardless of who else goes there.

"On Single Sex Buses, Relief from Unwanted Contact"
Mexico City looks out for the ladies.
Excerpt: “Woo-hoo!” bellowed Catalina Garduño the other day as man after man was turned away from the bus she was riding. Her outbursts animated the other women on board, who joined in the celebration. As they rolled along Paseo de la Reforma on their way home from work, the atmosphere resembled a ladies’ night on wheels.

- Washington Post -

"The John Edwards Primary"
Edwards has a tough decision to make as he is courted by both camps.
Excerpt: That Edwards is agonizing over the endorsement should be worrisome to Obama. Edwards, the scourge of special interests, should be easy pickings for the change candidate in the Democratic race, given all Edwards has said in criticism about Clinton over months of campaigning. But outward appearances suggest he is genuinely torn. An endorsement of Clinton would be a blow to Obama.

"French Women Don't Get Fat and Do Get Lucky"
Do our Francophone friends across the pond get to have their cake and eat it too?
Excerpt: Frenchwomen simply don't suffer from the same dramatic, post-40s slide into sexual obsolescence. Just 15 percent of Frenchwomen in their 50s and 27 percent in their 60s haven't had any sex in the past year, according to a 2004 national survey by France's Regional Health Observatory. Another national survey being released next month will report that cohabiting Frenchwomen over 50 are having more sex now than they did in the early 1990s.

"Obama's Bradley Effect?"
Could racism be dividing the Democrats?
Excerpt: Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley, an African American Democrat, unexpectedly lost his 1982 campaign for governor. His defeat came as voters told pollsters that they preferred the black candidate and then voted the other way. In California's primary last Tuesday, Obama lost by a landslide 10 percentage points despite one late survey showing him ahead by 13 points and two others giving him a one-point lead.

*Bonus: check out Blackline's humorous take on what they call the "Reverse Bradley Effect" in the states Obama took by a landslide: click here for the full piece.

"Hirsi Ali Seeks French Citizenship"
Woman known for her no-holds-barred criticisms of Islam set to settle in France.
Excerpt: A prominent critic of Islam, Hirsi Ali wrote the screenplay of the film "Submission," a fictional study of abused Muslim women with scenes of near-naked women with Quranic texts appearing on their flesh. The film's director, Theo van Gogh, was killed by a Muslim extremist in Amsterdam in 2004. Hirsi Ali was threatened in a note left on his body. She now lives in the United States, guarded day and night.

"Airstrikes Prompt New Darfur Exodus"
More breaking news from the Sudan
Excerpt: The refugees are "destitute and terrified," said Helene Caux, spokeswoman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, headquartered in Geneva. "They told of their villages being looted and burned, and encircled by militia."

"Online Courses Aim to Prevent Dropouts"
Could a new approach encourage high school completion?
Excerpt: By spending his school lunch periods in the Arlington Mill computer lab, Lara has nearly completed an online physics course; he'll take senior English online this spring. At the same time, he is also taking a handful of regular classes. The online courses will shorten the time it takes him to graduate.

- Wendi Muse

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