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A school’s mural removal: should kids be shielded from brutal US history?

Every day at a San Francisco high school, students pass artwork depicting slavery and violence against Native Americans Depending on whom you ask, a 1,600-sq-ft art installation at George Washington high school in San Francisco is either an unflinching look at American history, a stark depiction of violence against oppressed minorities or both. In New Deal-era murals spanning the staircase and lobby, the Russian emigre Victor Arnautoff depicted Washington in 13 scenes. Two in particular have generated student complaints for more than 50 years, and in April, an ad hoc…

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Romance novelists pledge to confront abortion ‘taboo’ after Alabama ban

State senates near-total abortion ban prompts demand for genre to treat issue as a normal part of life, not a moral lesson Dip into the fast-moving world of romantic fiction and it quickly becomes clear that very few of the fictional couples Alabamas state senate passed a near-total ban on abortion, writers are asking themselves why none of these heroines ever considers termination. According to the Guttmacher Institute, an organisation promoting sexual and reproductive health and rights, its a common experience for women in the US, with an abortion by…

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San Francisco politicians champion civil liberties – but back police raid on journalist

After authorities seize reporters notes, Democratic leaders say they support the raid and decline to address press freedom concerns San Francisco politicians pride themselves on defending civil liberties in the face of unprecedented attacks by the White House. But when a Donald Trump-style crackdown on citizens rights took place in their own backyard, the citys Democratic leaders had a different kind of response. They supported it. San Francisco police (SFPD) uncover a police leak to the reporter. The states newspapers, along with first amendment advocates across the US, have decried…

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Extreme abortion laws shine light on Trump’s courting of religious right

Evangelical backing for a thrice-married celebrity is not as odd as it seems: on abortion, the supreme court and more, the president has delivered win after win After bowing his head in prayer, King Cyrus, deeply flawed men who nevertheless carried out Gods will. David Barker, director of the Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies at American University, suggests Christian evangelicals start with an assumption of human depravity that sets expectations low, so Trumps lying and philandering and Twitter rage and can be overlooked. Speaking at the American Enterprise Institute…

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Great fanfare as Uber gets its stock on the road, but app stalls in New York

Could this be the moment the sentiment on Wall Street turned against the tech sector? Ubers stock market debut came with all the usual razzmatazz of a big American technology IPO. The chief executive spent weeks making sweeping statements about how the business was just getting started and had new worlds to conquer everything from pizza delivery to international freight. In the background, investment bankers whipped up buyers for the transportation stock of the 21st century. And, when immediately went into reverse. Priced at $45 a share, valuing Uber at…

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Denver votes against initiative to decriminalize psilocybin

Late results showed nearly 55% of voters had rejected proposal on psychoactive substance in magic mushrooms Voters on Tuesday appeared to reject an attempt to make Denver the first US city to decriminalize psilocybin the psychoactive substance in magic mushrooms and add a new chapter to the citys role in shaping wider drug policy. The citizen initiative on the ballot followed the same tack taken by marijuana activists to decriminalize pot possession in 2005 in the city. That move was followed by statewide legalization in 2012. A number of other…

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Why we are addicted to conspiracy theories

The long read: Outsiders and the disenfranchised have always embraced the existence of wild plots and cover-ups. But now the biggest conspiracy-mongers are in charge In January 2015, I spent the longest, queasiest week of my life on a cruise ship filled with conspiracy theorists. As our boat rattled toward Mexico and back, I heard about every wild plot, secret plan and dark cover-up imaginable. It was mostly fascinating, occasionally exasperating and the cause of a headache that took months to fade. To my pleasant surprise, given that I was…

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Spotify reaches 100m paying subscribers worldwide

Streaming service boosted by better-than-expected performance in US and Canada Spotify has reached 100 million paying subscribers, in a landmark for the music streaming service as it faces competition from major tech firms. The number of users willing to pay for the service soared 32% in the first three months of 2019 compared with a year earlier, Spotify said on Monday. The Swedish company, which owned by Jay-Z, Beyonc and other stars. Last month, Spotify filed a complaint against Apple with European regulators, alleging that the US tech firm limits…

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Alphabet: Google parent company’s shares drop after latest earnings report

Report comes as company faces internal worker turmoil, and a recent $1.7bn fine from the EU Google shares slumped on Monday after the company failed to beat analyst predictions, following a year of internal turmoil, privacy concerns, and several international fines. The companys stock was down 7% in after-hours trading after it reported first quarter revenue of $36.34bn, lower than the $37.33bn revenue forecast by analysts. The quarter one earnings represent a 17% increase from the same time last year, in which it reported $31.15bn in revenue. In a call…

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‘It’s an outrage’: Putin attacks 18-month prison term for Maria Butina

Russian president says sentence an attempt by US to save face after Butina found guilty of conspiring to infiltrate US conservative circles Vladimir Putin on Saturday described as an outrage the sentencing of Russian gun rights activist Maria Butina to 18 months in prison in the US, calling her treatment a travesty of justice. The Russian president described the sentencing as an attempt by the US to save face in his first public comments in the wake of Butinas sentencing in on Friday. Her case has been high-profile amid the…

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More than 900 quarantined amid measles fears at Los Angeles universities

Students and faculty at two schools have been exposed as number of US measles cases hits 25-year high More than 900 students and staff members at two Los Angeles universities were quarantined on campus or sent home this week in one of the most sweeping efforts yet by public health authorities to contain the spread of measles in the US, where cases have reached a 25-year high. By Friday afternoon, two days after Los Angeles county ordered the precautions, about 200 of those affected had been cleared to return after…

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Maria Butina sentenced to 18 months for trying to infiltrate US right and NRA

Russian, 30, admitted conspiracy to act as a Russian agent after building a network that reached into Donald Trumps circle A federal judge sentenced the Russian gun-rights activist Maria Butina to 18 months in prison on Friday, after she tried to infiltrate US conservative groups and the National Rifle Association to promote Russian political interests around the 2016 election. After serving time in prison, Butina, 30, would be deported, a US district court judge said in a ruling the Russian embassy in Washington attacked as political and driven by repressive…

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Sanders dares Democrats to stop him but is he the man to beat Trump?

The socialist senator from Vermont and his supporters seem to have the upper hand over a party establishment worried hes too leftwing Raging against the machine has taken Bernie Sanders a long way. In 2016, his disdain for the establishment and the donor class gave progressives a near-perfect foil to Hillary Clinton, who was cast as the anointed Democratic candidate for president. Sanders was beaten in the primary but the senator and his allies clamored for and won changes to party rules they said were rigged. Now, the partys role…

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Tesla gets restraining order against alleged harasser

Carmaker says man trespassed on factory in California and drove at security guard Tesla has been granted a temporary restraining order to prevent an alleged harasser from approaching the carmakers California factory. The electric carmaker claimed in its application for the order that the man had repeatedly harassed its employees. He allegedly controls a Twitter account which frequently claimsthat Tesla engages in fraud and which claims to be betting that Tesla shares will fall. The man, a resident of Fremont, California, is named in the order, granted by a court…

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Member of armed militia who detained migrants faced similar charges in 2006

Larry Mitchell Hopkins, arrested on Saturday, was also arrested in Oregon in 2006 for impersonating a police officer while unlawfully carrying a firearm as a convicted felon A member of an armed civilian group that has detained migrants near the US-Mexico border who was arrested on Saturday reportedly faced similar charges in Oregon 13 years ago. In Sunland Park, Texas on Saturday, FBI agents and local police arrested Larry Mitchell Hopkins, 69, on suspicion of being a felon in possession of firearms. In Klamath county, Oregon in 2006, Hopkins was…

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