February 2012 Archives

ESPN fires employee over Jeremy Lin controversy

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ESPN fired the employee who wrote a racially offensive headline about basketball player Jeremy Lin and suspended an anchor who used the same slur, the sports network said Sunday.

The headline "Chink in the Armor," referenced the New York Knicks' loss Friday night, said CNN.

The phrase has two meanings. One implying the loss, the other being an ethnic slur for those of asian descent.

According to CNN, the headline was up for 35 minutes on Saturday morning before being removed.

"Lin is the NBA's first American-born player of Chinese or Taiwanese descent." said the Star Tribune. "He has captivated sports fans with unexpected dominance on the court."

EPSN also apologized for an anchor using the term on Wednesday night. A third reference was made on Friday, according to CNN.

Lin addressed the controversy during a news conference. "I don't think it was on purpose," Lin said. "At the same time, they've apologized. I don't care anymore."


Washington Avalanche

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Three skiers were killed in an avalanche near a ski resort in Washington on Sunday.

There were 12 people buried in the snow when the avalanche hit the back side of Stevens Pass in the Cascade mountains, the Star Tribune reported.

Katie Larson, a spokeswoman for the King's County Sheriff's Office, said that all of the skiers were experienced and had the appropriate equipment," but "nature happened."

They performed CPR on the three men to no avail, Larson said.

Jack Jablonski

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Jack Jablonski, injured Benilde-St. Margaret's high school hockey player, is making progress in rehab.

Jablonski was paralyzed during a junior varsity hockey game in December.

Rob Shaver wrote and sang a song for the injured teen.

Jablonski's coach Ken Pauly, said, "there hasn't been much physical change for Jablonski but his attitude is remarkable."

The injury has left Jablonski severely handicapped. The doctor who operated on him said "we can't expect much recovery."

Train-hopping death

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A 15-year-old boy was found dead near railroad tracks in northeast Minneapolis on Thursday night.

The body Christopher Hanson, was found late Thursday night alongside railroad tracks by 14th Avenue and Fillmore St. NE.

According to the Star Tribune, "The cause of death is multiple blunt force craniocerebral injuries."

Hanson's death is under investigation.

Global fraud case with local roots

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Investigators uncovered a highly structured, international identity-theft ring, with operations based in California, New York, and Minnesota.

The victims were banks, credit card companies, and identities from around the world, said US assistant Attorney Ann Anaya. Over 8,700 individual identities were stolen.

The ring had as many as 200 members, many of whom were originally from West Africa.

"To date, 22 of the 29 people who have been publicly charged in the conspiracy have pleaded guilty," according to the Star Tribune.

University goes to Supreme Court over Facebook comments

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The University of Minnesota went to court on Wednesday, to discipline a mortuary sciences student for comments she made on Facebook.

In December 2009, Amanda Tatro wrote on Facebook that she wanted "to stab a certain someone in the throat" with a trocar- a tool used for embalming.

The Minnesota Court of Appeals upheld the University's right to discipline Tatro. She maintains that the University encroached on free speech rights.

The questioning lasted an hour, then, the court adjourned.

Tatro said after the hearing that she hoped to "finally get closure to what I didn't start."

The justice's decision usually takes three to five months.

Romney wins Maine Caucuses

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Presidential candidate Mitt Romney won Maine's Republican caucuses, state party officials announced Saturday.

Romney narrowly beat candidate Ron Paul in Maine, after suffering three straight losses earlier this week.

Romney's campaign released a statement thanking voters and further emphasizing his conservative stance. "We stand for conservative principles, liberty and prosperity," the statement said.

Conflict in Syria

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Saudi Arabia has drafted a document intended to halt the killing in Syria.

"The three-page draft 'strongly condemns' the violations of human rights by Syrian authorities," according to CNN.

The U.N. Security Council already failed to pass a resolution on Syria, after China and Russia vetoed the earlier draft resolution.

French Ambassador to the UN, Gerard Araud, said of China and Russia's vetoes, "It is a sad day for the council. It is a sad day for Syria."

Whitney Houston dies at 48

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Pop superstar Whitney Houston died Saturday in Beverly Hills California at the age of 48.

The singer and actress was found in her room at the Beverly Hilton hotel at 3:55 p.m. Paramedics spent 20 minutes attempting to revive her to no avail, authorities said.

The cause of Houston's death is yet to be determined, but authorities indicated no signs of foul play. "There was no visible signs of trauma," said Assistant Chief Ed Winter of the Los Angeles County Coroner's office.

"While Houston had battled drug addiction for years, she was attempting a comeback," The New York Times.

Analysis of Attribution

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The New York Times article entitled "Egyptian Soccer Riot Kills More Than 70," features a total of 10 attributions. They are spread throughout the story. When someone is directly quoted, the writer shows a tendency to partially quote and break up the quotes with his/her own writing throughout a paragraph. Sometimes the attribution continues into a second paragraph. The source is referenced on the first mention, then the person is referred to as he/she.

The reporter is successful because there is an extensive amount of information that is presented through the quotes, but the writing is not bogged down by an excessive amount of quoting. Also, the quotes are very carefully selected. They are emotionally impacting and powerful, and are from soccer players involved in the incident, along with government/health officials.

One example present in the text epitomizes the emphasis on using attribution to describe an incident that was a disturbing human tragedy: "Is life this cheap?" The reporter intentionally presented quotes such as this one (from a star Al Ahly soccer player) that would lend the story emotional impact. The sources are all people, lending the story even more of a human aspect.

The reporter avoids quoting when it is unnecessary, that is, when the attribution can be made apparent through summarizing a source.

Cold Snap in Europe

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Intense cold and heavy snowfall buried parts of Europe over the past few days, claiming hundreds of lives.

Eastern Europe was hit especially hard. According to CNN, "Ukraine appears to be the worst so far, with Poland, Romania, Serbia and Belarus also suffering much more severe winter conditions than usual."

122 people have died in Ukraine since the cold spell started more than a week ago.

The New York Times reported that "about half of Sunday's 1,300 flights at Heathrow Airport near London were canceled."

Potential Vikings Stadium near Metrodome

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Stadium negotiators are finishing a plan involving the 2016 completion of a new Minnesota Vikings stadium alongside the Metrodome.

Gov. Mark Dayton's chief stadium negotiator, Ted Mondale, said Friday that the plan should be finished this week.

According to Fox News, the Vikings said they "prefer a Ramsey County proposal to build a $1.1 billion stadium in suburban Arden Hills."

According to Star Tribune, local funding will be counted on to pay for around a third of a nearly $1 billion stadium. The Vikings have pledged $425 million for a new stadium in Arden Hills but have declined to offer a number for the potential stadium next to the Metrodome site.

Another potential site for the new stadium is the Basilica of St. Mary Catholic Church.

Egyptian Soccer Riot

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Over 70 people were killed in a mass brawl between rival soccer fans in Port Said, Egypt, on Wednesday.

The violence began midway through the match between long-time rivals El Masry of Port Said and Al Ahly of Cairo.

Scuffles in the stands escalated into a full-blown riot after then El Masry won the match 3-1. Al Ahly players were chased into their locker room by rival fans, who attacked them with knives, clubs, and stones.

Egyptian politicians, fans, and soccer officials faulted the police and military, accusing them of being overly complacent. Essam el Erian, a senior lawmaker from the Muslim Brotherhood, told The New York Times that "The reason for this tragedy is the deliberate neglect and absence of the military and the police."

The soccer match was believed to be the deadliest since 1996.

Canadian Pacific Train Derails along Mississipi River

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A Canadian Pacific train derailed in Red Wing Minn. along the Mississippi River Sunday morning. The accident left 19 train cars off the track.

Red Wing Police said, "all the train cars were empty and no one was injured."

The cause of derailment remains undetermined.

Romney Wins in Nevada

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Mitt Romney won the Nevada caucuses on Saturday, marking his second first-place finish in four days, following a victory in the Florida primary on Tuesday.

Like Romney, about one fourth of Republican caucusgoers were Mormon. He won a large coalition of voters consisting of conservatives, Tea Party supporters and evangelical Christians.

Nevada has the largest share of Tea Party supporters of any state that has participated in Republican nominating. Although considered a pivotal part of Newt Gingrich's coalition, Romney won a higher percentage of this group of voters.

According to the New York Times, "The top issue on the minds of caucusgoers was the economy, and 6 in 10 of those who listed it as their leading concern voted for Mr. Romney."

Romney is now the "clear favourite to win Republican presidential nomination," the guardian. Despite the recent success, he needs to win 1,144 delegates to secure the nomination.

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This page is an archive of entries from February 2012 listed from newest to oldest.

January 2012 is the previous archive.

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