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Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Current location: Virginia
Member since: Wed Jun 1, 2011, 07:34 PM
Number of posts: 7,635

About Me

Navy brat-->University fac brat. All over-->Wisconsin-->TN-->VA. RN (ret), married, grandmother of 11. Progressive since birth. My mouth may be foul but my heart is wide open.

Journal Archives

University of Virginia disenrolls unvaccinated students ahead of fall semester

Forty-nine students who registered for fall classes at the University of Virginia have been disenrolled after failing to meet the school’s vaccine mandate, officials said Friday.

The campus unveiled its vaccine mandate in May and the overwhelming majority of the campus is in compliance, officials said. More than 96 percent of U-Va. students are vaccinated against the coronavirus and 335 students with religious and medical exemptions have been granted permanent waivers, officials said.

An additional 184 temporary waivers were granted to students who have had trouble getting vaccinated but plan to get their shots upon arriving to campus.

Less than 1 percent of students enrolled — or 238 students — are not in compliance, “but only 49 of those students had actually selected courses, meaning that a good number of the remaining 189 may not have been planning to return to the university this fall at all, regardless of our vaccination policy,” said Brian Coy, a school spokesman.


Florida gives school districts 48 hours to reverse mask mandates or lose funding

Two Florida school districts that defied state rules and imposed mask mandates for students have been given 48 hours to reverse course or lose state funding equal to the salaries of their school board members.

In an order sent Friday to the districts in Alachua and Broward counties -- the first of five districts in the state to impose mask requirements this month -- the State Board of Education said that if they do not reverse their mandates in two days, the districts will have to provide Commissioner of Education Richard Corcoran the current salaries of each school board member.

The Florida Department of Education said it then will start gradually withholding state funds -- equal to 1/12 of the salaries of the board members, monthly -- "until each district demonstrates compliance," according to a statement.

The order prohibits the districts from letting the reduction of funds "impact student services or teacher pay" and requires them to report to the state any instance in which they enforce their "unlawful" mask mandate.


Two young ospreys were removed from their nest and euthanized so workers could replace a light

Two juvenile ospreys were taken from their nest on a light pole at a park in Calvert County, Md., and euthanized, causing a stir among local wildlife enthusiasts and birders.

County officials said they followed all protocols and federal laws protecting birds in removing the young ospreys from the pole to replace a light fixture on it at Cove Point Park in Lusby, but that is little comfort to local wildlife rehabilitation experts and birders.

Supporters of the ospreys said officials should have consulted a wildlife sanctuary to take the birds or relocate them rather than kill them. Birders said the animals were about to fledge from their nest and appeared to be perfectly healthy, but a federal wildlife official said the ospreys weren’t close to fledging.

Ospreys, like bald eagles and falcons, were nearly wiped out because of pesticide use more than 40 years ago, but they have made a comeback — including in the D.C. region, experts said — as part of widespread conservation efforts. Federal wildlife officials said there are about 2,000 nesting pairs of ospreys in the Chesapeake Bay area. They often nest on top of lights or utility poles, experts said. At the Calvert park, they had made a nest in the pole that overlooked a ballfield.

Euthanize bureaucrats

Jeopardy! host Mike Richards quits after sexist comments surface

TV presenter Mike Richards has stepped down as the new co-host of the US quiz show Jeopardy! after sexist comments that he made on a podcast resurfaced.

His exit comes just nine days after his new role was announced.

Pressure grew after a report by The Ringer dug up disparaging comments he made on his podcast The Randumb Show in 2013 and 2014.

Mr Richards, who is also the executive producer of the show, said he would be stepping down "effective immediately".

"It pains me that these past incidents and comments have cast such a shadow on Jeopardy! as we look to start a new chapter," he wrote in a statement announcing his decision.

Since he's the executive producer, I'm suggesting he appointed himself anyway. Bring back LeVar Burton!

Chipotle is testing plant-based chorizo

Chipotle is testing plant-based chorizo in Denver and Indianapolis -- its first new protein made from alternative ingredients in seven years.

The company developed its chorizo alternative internally, shunning Beyond Meat and Impossible, which have recently struck deals with other fast food-chains for meat alternatives on their menus. Chipotle currently serves sofritas, a spicy tofu, and occasionally sells real chorizo.

Chipotle's plant-based chorizo is made with a lot of seasoning including ancho chili and smoked paprika and combined with a "natural protein sourced from freshly grown peas," it explained in a press release. Chipotle's chorizo is vegan and has 20 grams of protein per serving.

Just something else I can't eat at Chipotle (you don't wanna know) but good for them, I guess

'Green steel': Swedish company ships first batch made without using coal

The world’s first customer delivery of “green steel” produced without using coal is taking place in Sweden, according to its manufacturer.

The Swedish venture Hybrit said it was delivering the steel to truck-maker Volvo AB as a trial run before full commercial production in 2026. Volvo has said it will start production in 2021 of prototype vehicles and components from the green steel.

Steel production using coal accounts for around 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Hybrit started test operations at its pilot plant for green steel in Lulea, northern Sweden, a year ago. It aims to replace coking coal, traditionally needed for ore-based steel making, with renewable electricity and hydrogen. Hydrogen is a key part of the EU’s plan to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Hybrit is owned by the steelmaker SSAB, state-owned utility Vattenfall and miner LKAB.


Britney Spears' case has shown why guardianship laws need to change

Around the world, fans of pop star Britney Spears celebrated her father’s announcement last week that he would resign as her conservator. This development is welcome news for Spears and her supporters, dubbed the #FreeBritney movement. But it will not end Spears’ conservatorship, which has prevented her from making decisions about her own life since it was established shortly after she had a mental breakdown in 2008. Nor will it prevent others from finding themselves in similar situations. That will require changing the underlying legal systems that created Spears’ predicament.

While many have only recently learned of conservatorship thanks to the #FreeBritney movement, this legal process is neither new nor unique to the US. It is a common court proceeding in which the court appoints someone to make decisions for individuals the court has found cannot make decisions for themselves. California – where Spears lives – calls this proceeding conservatorship and calls the appointee a conservator. More commonly, it is called guardianship and the appointee is called a guardian. While Spears has drawn attention to guardianship, the process typically entangles those far less privileged. Changes in the pop star’s situation , as welcome as they may be, won’t themselves trigger the reform of a legal mechanism mainly experienced by people society has historically treated as expendable.

Since medieval times, English law has recognised the government’s power as parens patraie (or “parent of the people”) to manage the property and bodies of citizens with cognitive disabilities. The first guardianship statutes were adopted in England in the 1600s during the reign of Charles II. And countries around the world have parallel systems that enable courts to appoint others to make decisions for people determined unable to do so for themselves. In England and Wales, for example, the court of protection can appoint a deputy in such situations; in Scotland, sheriff courts can appoint a guardian.

Guardianship can provide valuable protection and assistance to those unable to care for themselves. Suppose an individual has a chronic illness but, due to advanced dementia, cannot understand the nature or consequences of that illness even with substantial help. If the person never executed a power of attorney appointing someone to make decisions for them, the best option may be for a court to appoint another person to make those decisions.

I have personally known of cases where guardianship has been abused by someone for monetary gain, so this is kind of personal to me.

A North Carolina Principal Rethinks The Classroom And Brings Students Outdoors

Last year's COVID-19 lockdown disrupted the idea of school as we know it and it forced educators to think outside of the box. For one elementary school principal in North Carolina, thinking outside of the box had him heading outside — literally.

Nicholas L. Dixon, principal of Foust Elementary School in Greensboro, had long been a supporter of outdoor learning, so when his school won a grant of $13,000 from the North Carolina Outdoor Heritage Advisory Council last year, he knew exactly what he wanted to do with the windfall: build an outdoor classroom that would inspire not only students but teachers as well.

Dixon used the money to order the needed supplies and, with the support of an enthusiastic school district and maintenance workers who took care of clearing the needed space and installing the equipment, Dixon's dream was realized within two weeks. Desks and chairs fashioned to look like logs filled an outdoor classroom area, with enough space between them to facilitate social distancing protocols. There's even a waterproof chalkboard.

The school was able to debut the outdoor space in December, right around the time students first began returning for in-person lessons and were adjusting to a new normal. First-graders were among the first to try out the space and luckily, Dixon told NPR, it was an instant hit — and it still is today.


Deputies Knocked A Woman Unconscious And Then Lied About It, A Federal Lawsuit Says

A woman who pulled off a road to change drivers during a trip with her father and three young children was knocked unconscious and arrested by two Northern California sheriff's deputies, who then lied about the encounter to responding paramedics and on official reports, according to a federal lawsuit filed Wednesday.

Body cameras worn by the deputies with the Solano County Sheriff's Office recorded them pulling guns on Nakia Porter before slamming her to the pavement while handcuffing her along a rural road in the town of Dixon on the night of Aug. 6, 2020. Porter's father, Joe Powell, was also placed in handcuffs and briefly detained.

Porter was jailed overnight on suspicion of resisting arrest, but never charged. She said the ordeal was confusing and dehumanizing.

"I was doing my best to do everything right, giving no reason to be treated like this," said Porter, 33, who is Black.


Over 10,000 students in Florida school district isolated or quarantined a week into school year

Just a week into the school year, over 10,000 students and staff in the Hillsborough County Public Schools district in Florida have been isolated or quarantined as districts across the state grapple with COVID-19.

Hillsborough is the seventh-largest school district in the U.S., with more than 213,000 students. As of Wednesday, 10,384 students and 338 staffers are isolated or under quarantine, the district told ABC News.

In total, there were 1,805 COVID-19 cases among students and staff, according to the Tampa-area district's COVID-19 dashboard.

The district is requiring masks for students, but parents can opt their children out. To date, at least 28,000 parents have opted out, district officials told ABC News.

Happy NOW, DeSatan? #DeSantisHatesKids
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