The student news site of New Trier High School

New Trier News

The student news site of New Trier High School

New Trier News

The student news site of New Trier High School

New Trier News

Outside the halls of New Trier: News Briefs

Turmoil in Syria

SYRIA – On September 12, Syrian President Bashar Assad publicly agreed to a Russian plan to secure and destroy chemical weapons that were used on August 21, to massacre hundreds of women and children near Damascus.

Assad’s proposal will work only if the U.S. halts its threats of military action against the Syrian government.

Assad also stated that his government will release data on its chemical weapons stockpile a month after signing the convention banning such weapons. The treaty states that a nation becomes a party 30 days after their letter is submitted. Syria submitted that letter Thursday and it has been received by the U.N.

Russia’s plan was announced September 9 in order to avert a potential U.S. military strike.

The U.S. still remains skeptical over Assad’s proposal, since Syria had long rejected joining the Chemical Weapons Convention, which requires all parties to declare and destroy whatever chemical weapons they may possess.

John Kerry cautioned that a U.S. military strike could occur if Assad doesn’t agree to dismantle his chemical arsenal properly. Kerry and a team of U.S. experts will have at least two days of meetings.

During this time, he and Russian officials will create an outline detailing how some 1,000 tons of chemical weapons and precursor materials, can be safely inventoried and isolated in an active war zone and then destroyed.

Emanuel apologizes for Burge era

Chicago – On September 11, Mayor Rahm Emanuel apologized for “the Burge era” in the Chicago Police Department during which many African-American men were tortured into false confessions for murders and rapes on the South Side under the supervision of ex-commander Jon Burge, who was dismissed from the force 20 years ago.

Flint Taylor, an attorney who has represented many of the victims involved in this scandal, suggested that the city should create a $20 million fund to compensate Burge victims who are unable to bring their cases to court.

Attorneys who are defending Burge victims say as many as 120 men were tortured and wrongfully imprisoned from 1972 to 1991.

So far the city has spent nearly $85 million on Burge-related settlements and legal fees, while the Cook County government has spent nearly $11 million, after 18 cases have been concluded. Three cases are still pending, and more are likely to come.

No love for equality

North Carolina – A North Carolina school teacher was reportedly suspended last week after showing her class Same Love music video by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, a video that won the 2013 MTV Music Award for best hip-hip music video.

Alexander Country Schools Associate Superintendent, Dr. Jeff Peal told The Taylorsville Times, that many school officials deemed the “Same Love” video highly inappropriate and outside the bounds of the curriculum.

“Same Love,” featuring Mary Lambert, advocates for equal rights for the gay and lesbian communities, which the teacher thought was something her class needed to go over in order to prevent bullying.

Last  November, a Michigan teacher, Susan Johnson, was suspended for several days without pay after one of her students claimed to have been offended by the song, “Same Love” when   played in class. Johnson’s suspension was later reversed after heated arguments amongst the American Civil Liberties Union and community members.

Macklemore responded to Johnson’s case at the time, saying, “This incident … exposed a latent homophobia, preventing safe space for all young people to feel confident in being themselves. It’s clear that Ms. Johnson felt bullying and ‘gay bashing’ were issues that needed to be addressed, and by doing so, was punished.”

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