http://espn.go.com/President Barack Obama says that if he owned the Washington Redskins, he would "think about changing" the team name, wading into the controversy over a football nickname that many people deem offensive to Native Americans. Obama, in an interview with The Associated Press, said team names like the Redskins offend "a sizable group of people." He said that while fans get attached to the nicknames, nostalgia may not be a good enough reason to keep them in place. "I don't know whether our attachment to a particular name should override the real legitimate concerns that people have about these things," he said in the interview, which was conducted Friday.An avid sports fan, Obama said he doesn't think Washington football fans are purposely trying to offend American Indians. "I don't want to detract from the wonderful Redskins fans that are here. They love their team and rightly so," he said. But the president appeared to come down on the side of those who have sharply criticized the football team's name, noting that Indians "feel pretty strongly" about mascots and team names that depict negative stereotypes about their heritage. Other professional sports teams have Indian nicknames, including football's Kansas City Chiefs and baseball's Atlanta Braves and Cleveland Indians. Numerous colleges and universities have changed names that reference Native Americans. St. John's changed its mascot from the Redmen to the Red Storm, Marquette is now the Golden Eagles instead of the Warriors and Stanford switched from the Indians to the Cardinal. The Redskins' nickname has attracted a fresh round of controversy in recent months, with local leaders in Washington calling for a name change and some media outlets refraining from using the name. The name is the subject of a long-running legal challenge from a group of American Indians seeking to block the team from having federal trademark protection. Congressional lawmakers have introduced a bill seeking the same goal, though it appears unlikely to pass. Opponents of the Redskins nickname also plan to hold a protest Monday outside the NFL's fall meeting in Washington. Team owner Dan Snyder has vowed to never abandon the name. But NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said last month that the league should pay attention to those offended by the nickname -- a subtle change in position for Goodell, who had more strongly supported the nickname in his previous statements this year. Despite the controversy, an AP-GfK poll conducted in April showed that nationally, "Redskins" still enjoys wide support. Nearly four in five Americans don't think the team should change its name, the survey found. Only 11 percent think it should be changed, while 8 percent weren't sure and 2 percent didn't answer. Obama said he doesn't have a direct stake in the Redskins debate since he's not a team owner. But he hinted that might be part of his post-White House plans. "Maybe after I leave the presidency," he joked. "I think it would be a lot of fun." He added: "I'd probably look at a basketball team before I looked at a football team. I know more about basketball than I do about football."
Saturday, October 5, 2013
At the war crimes trials, some of the accused Jamaat-e-Islami leaders justified siding with the Pakistani military during Bangladesh’s war of independence, saying they had done that to save the unity of Pakistan. But then there were some West Pakistanis who tried to save that unity not by siding with the military, but by trying to stop its bullets.
By Aamer Ahmed KhanThree attacks within 10 days killing nearly 150 people in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar is an escalation even by Pakistani standards — an escalation in a war that has killed 45,000 civilians over the last 10 years in attacks as random as they were brutal. Coming in the backdrop of the government’s efforts to initiate peace negotiations with Taliban militants, a hugely controversial initiative which seems to have divided Pakistani opinion makers along seemingly irreconcilable lines, these attacks have thrown up questions that go beyond the obvious and all-encompassing label of terror.
Pakistan is among the bottom ten countries in the Freedom on the Net 2013 report, which measures the level of internet and digital media freedom in 60 countries. The annual report is carried out by Freedom House, an independent watchdog organization.In the new report, each country received a numerical score from 0 (the most free) to 100 (the least free), which serves as the basis for internet freedom status. Pakistan received a score of 67 and status ‘not free’, whereas Iceland was at the top with a score of just 6.The Pakistan section of the report was conducted just after the elections held on May 11, 2013 and covered the developments regarding internet freedom between the time period May 2012 – April 2013. It was researched and compiled by Digital Rights Foundation, Pakistan along with research analysts of Freedom House. “Pakistan remains one of the worst countries when it comes to online freedom of speech, user rights and citizens’ privacy”, commented Digital Rights Foundation Executive Director, Nighat Dad. “In the past year, state has been rigorously trying to implement the best of surveillance set-ups to create a kind of watchdog upon activists, journalists and a common citizen on the name of war against terrorism. Pakistan’ civil society, despite being faced with threats and vicious consequences, is strongly fighting against the state-employed policies and technologies that can hurt Pakistani citizen”.Even though the number of internet users in the country is increasing, the Pakistan report states that there have been various political and social obstacles by successive governments that came into power, in the name of fighting terrorism and preserving Islam. This has caused problems for many civil rights activists, students and other such personnel who want to engage in intensive multimedia training, the report concluded. According to the report: “Legal measures also threatened digital rights, particularly over sensitive religious issues. At least two of the 23 criminal investigations launched in 2012 under Pakistan’s strict blasphemy laws—which carry the death penalty—involved content sent by mobile phone. A Twitter spat escalated into a defamation suit after a political website accused a religious leader of inciting hatred”. Obstacles to access According to the report, “Low literacy, difficult economic conditions, and cultural resistance have limited the proliferation of ICTs in Pakistan. Poor copper wire infrastructure and inadequate monitoring of service quality by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) have historically stymied the expansion of broadband internet.” Only urban cities such as Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and Peshawar have access to better quality broadband services, the report found. Additionally, the report cited “bureaucratic hurdles” as having caused a problem for development of 3G or 4G networks. Access to the internet has been deliberately obstructed by the Pakistani authorities in Balochistan where there has been persistent conflict between the Baloch nationalists and the security forces, the report stated. Limits on content Some of the major developments by the government in 2012 and 2013 included creating and installing new equipment to systemise website blocking and filtering, the report found. Despite such blocking, the report concluded that Pakistanis have relatively open access to international news organizations and other independent media, as well as a range of websites representing Pakistani political parties, local civil society groups, and international human rights organizations. “Nevertheless, most online commentators exercise a degree of self-censorship when writing on topics such as religion, blasphemy, separatist movements, and women’s and LGBT rights,” it added. Surveillance Ordinary internet users as well as activists, bloggers, and media representatives in Balochistan are concerned about government surveillance as they feel restricted to openly talk about their religious beliefs, particularly atheists. In February 2013, the upper house of parliament passed the Fair Trial Act 2012 allows security agencies to seek a judicial warrant to monitor private communications “to neutralize and prevent threat or any attempt to carry out scheduled offenses;” and covers information sent from or received in Pakistan or between Pakistani citizens whether they are resident in the country or not. Under the law, service providers face a one-year jail term or a fine of up to PKR 10 million for failing to cooperate with the warrant. According to the report, “Pakistan is also reported to be a long-time customer of Narus, a US-based firm known for designing technology that allows for monitoring of traffic flows and deep-packet inspection of internet communications, and some media reports say Pakistani authorities have also acquired surveillance technology from China.”
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
http://www.parade.com/Much like Oscar season, the period before the announcement of each year’s Nobel Prize recipients is marked with speculation: Who will win?
http://www.webmd.com/Postpartum depression (PPD) is a complex mix of physical, emotional, and behavioral changes that happen in a woman after giving birth. According to the DSM IV, a manual used to diagnose mental disorders, PPD is a form of major depression that has its onset within four weeks after delivery. The diagnosis of postpartum depression is based not only on the length of time between delivery and onset, but also on the severity of the depression What Is Postpartum Depression? Postpartum depression is linked to chemical, social, and psychological changes associated with having a baby. The term describes a range of physical and emotional changes that many new mothers experience. The good news is postpartum depression can be treated with medication and counseling. The chemical changes involve a rapid drop in hormones after delivery. The actual link between this drop and depression is still not clear. But what is known is that the levels of estrogen and progesterone, the female reproductive hormones, increase tenfold during pregnancy. Then, they drop sharply after delivery. By three days after a woman gives birth, the levels of these hormones drop back to what they were before she got pregnant. In addition to these chemical changes, social and psychological changes associated with having a baby create an increased risk of depression. What Are the Symptoms of Postpartum Depression? Symptoms of postpartum depression are similar to what happens normally following childbirth. They include lack of sleep, appetite changes, excessive fatigue, decreased libido, and frequent mood changes. However, these are also accompanied by other symptoms of major depression, which may include depressed mood; loss of pleasure; feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, and helplessness; and thoughts of death or suicide. What Are the Risk Factors for Getting Postpartum Depression? A number of factors can increase the risk of postpartum depression, including: a history of depression during pregnancy age at time of pregnancy -- the younger you are, the higher the risk ambivalence about the pregnancy children -- the more you have, the more likely you are to be depressed in a subsequent pregnancy having a history of depression or premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) limited social support living alone marital conflict Who Is at Risk for Postpartum Depression? Most new mothers experience the "baby blues" after delivery. About one out of every 10 of these women will develop a more severe and longer-lasting depression after delivery. About one in 1,000 women develops a more serious condition called postpartum psychosis.