current events

The People at Eric Garner's Funeral

Yesterday, Amy K. Nelson went to the funeral of Eric Garner, the 43-year-old Staten Island father and grandfather killed by police chokehold, and asked the attendees why they had come. Their responses, and her photos of them in protest mourning, are worth some time. [Animal New York]


The Sandwich Party Revolution

There have been 12 coups in recent history in Thailand. But the latest – three weeks ago – was the first in the social media age. The military rulers now in charge are monitoring social media closely – meaning those who oppose the new regime have had to get inventive.

Sandwiches are not a particularly Thai food, but they've become very important in Thailand in the past few days. With political gatherings of more than five people banned, "sandwich parties" – organised via social media – have taken off. The first of these took place at Kasetsart University in Bangkok on 6 June.

State-run newspapers have [...]


23-year-old freelance photographer Mosa'ab Elshamy has been covering events in Egypt since 2011; here's his latest photoset on Flickr, from the massacre on Wednesday in Rabaa Al-Adaweya Square, where the new authorities' attempt to clear the six-week pro-Morsi sit-in resulted in at least 250 deaths. Elshamy's images are tremendous but difficult and NSFW.

Related: a piece about the robust presence of children at the sit-in, and a slideshow of current Egyptian political cartoons.

[The Daily Beast, The New Yorker]


Birthright Still Sending Trips to Israel, Encouraging Participants to Tag Photos #YOLOIsrael

Miriam Berger's got the surreal details at BuzzFeed, including a recent trip participant who says, “We feel really safe, it’s almost as if we’re in this bubble."


Boko Haram Claims "I Abducted Your Girls, I Will Sell Them in the Market"; Nigerian Police Arrest Protest Leader

The brutal Islamist militant cult (Boko Haram is an unofficial nickname that translates roughly to "Western education is forbidden") has admitted on video: "I abducted your girls." Other quotes are coming out right now:

"I abducted a girl at a Western education school and you are disturbed. I said Western education should end. Western education should end. Girls, you should go and get married."

“I will repeat this: Western education should fold up. I abducted your girls.”

“I will sell them in the market, by Allah,” Shekau said, claiming his group was holding the girls as “slaves”.

“I will marry off a woman at [...]


Search Terms: Fiscal, Cliff, Explained

What this cartoon teaches us is that a) it's okay to talk about politics before the first date, but b) the word "politics" might make your love interest's face contort into an unsexy tragedy mask. What this cartoon does not teach us is anything about the fiscal cliff, which was averted yesterday. For better reporting on that, go here. Also, reading between the lines in all this news, it seems one must make $450k a year now to be considered "rich," so that is a new thing to think about.


At Least It's Not Yesterday

But also, of course, it is. "From here on, [the army] will start to clear the ground."


The Execution of Clayton Lockett in Oklahoma Last Night

The New York Times on last night's "botched" execution:

What was supposed to be the first of two executions here Tuesday night was halted when the prisoner, Clayton D. Lockett, began to writhe and gasp after he had already been declared unconscious and called out “oh man,” according to witnesses.

AP reporter Bailey Elise McBride tweeted it live, although she issued a correction: it was a prison official and not the dying prisoner who said "Something's wrong" 14 minutes in. VOX explains why Oklahoma would try to execute two men with an untested mix of chemicals:

The state publicly revealed the combination [...]


<3 Killer Mike

Big Boi and Killer Mike rap about Troy Davis. And by "rap" I mean "talk," sorry.