Prime minister Sheikh Hasina addresses a programme after laying foundation stone of an underpass at a road adjacent to Shaheed Ramiz Uddin Cantonment School and College in Dhaka on Sunday. Photo: Prothom AloPrime minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday laid the foundation stone of an underpass at a road adjacent to Shaheed Ramiz Uddin Cantonment School and College in the city.The underpass will be built as per the commitment the prime minister made after two students of the college were killed in a recent road accident.Bangladesh Army will implement the project, reports UNB.On 29 July, Diya Khanam Mim and Abdul Karim Rajib, students of the college, were killed as a bus ploughed through some students in front of Kurmitola General Hospital on airport road in the capital.The accident sparked off countrywide student movement protesting at the accident.Amid the movement, the family members of the two students and the principal of the college met the prime minister on 2 August.During the meeting, Sheikh Hasina promised to construct an underpass nearby the Ramiz Uddin College and provide five buses for its students. On 4 August, the prime minister provided the five buses.
The United States issued a ban on Wednesday prohibiting its citizens traveling to North Korea, a move triggered by the death of a US student imprisoned by Pyongyang during a tourist visit.The ban, which comes into effect September 1, was introduced after officials said the “serious risk” of arrest by Pyongyang officials during tourist travel presented an “imminent danger to the physical safety” of its citizens.“All United States passports are declared invalid for travel to, in, or through the DPRK unless specially validated for such travel,” read the restriction in the US government’s Federal Register, using the acronym for North Korea’s official name.Strict warnings against travel to the North were already in place before the ban was first announced last month following the death of American student Otto Warmbier.Warmbier, 22, a student at the University of Virginia, died in June after being held by Pyongyang for more than a year on charges of stealing a propaganda poster from a North Korean hotel.He had been sentenced to 15 years’ hard labour in the North, but was sent home in a mysterious coma in June and died soon afterwards.US President Donald Trump slammed Warmbier’s detention and eventual death as “a total disgrace,” pledging to “prevent such tragedies from befalling innocent people at the hands of regimes that do not respect the rule of law or basic human decency”.The new ban will remain in effect for one year, unless it is revoked sooner by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.Exemptions will be allowed in specific cases for humanitarian travel and journalists.‘We don’t care’Tour companies said the ban would significantly reduce the numbers of Western tourists to the impoverished country.“Currently US citizens make up about 20 percent of the Western tourist market, so it will reduce the industry by at least that much—plus the collateral damage of others who may not want to go as a result of this,” said Simon Cockerell, general manager of Koryo Tours, the market leader in Western tourism to North Korea.Some 5,000 Western tourists visit the North each year, with standard one-week trips costing about $2,000. The vast majority of tourists visiting North Korea are Chinese.Han Chol-Su, a senior North Korea development official, earlier denied that the loss of business would hurt his country’s economy.“If the US government says Americans cannot come to this country, we don’t care a bit,” he told AFP in Pyongyang last month.North Korean state media “relentlessly presents Americans in the most negative manner; rapacious, war-mongering, and utterly filled with hatred of the Korean people,” Cockerell said.Describing American visitors as “one of the best soft-power assets of the United States”, he added that the ban would eliminate a counterweight to that propaganda.In Pyongyang, visiting US tourist Carolyn Dunlap described the move as “definitely not unexpected” in light of Warmbier’s death and other detentions.“Honestly the current travel advice is not much different from a ban, the only difference is people can still physically go,” she told AFP last week.She planned her trip before speculation of the move mounted, but its timing means she will be one of the last US tourists to the country for at least one year.“It’s kind of cool, kind of weird,” said the 21-year-old.Warmbier’s death added to already high tensions in the region over North Korea’s weapons ambitions.In recent weeks Pyongyang has launched two successful tests of an intercontinental ballistic missile that experts say could reach US territory.
.Some 120 Islamic State fighters and 60 foreign mercenaries were killed in a series of Russian air strikes in Syria over the past 24 hours, the defence ministry in Moscow said on Saturday.Puzzlingly, the ministry also said three senior IS commanders including Omar al-Shishani had been confirmed dead as a result of an earlier Russian strike.Moscow reported al-Shishani’s death despite the fact that the Pentagon said in 2016 the notorious fighter had been killed by American troops in Iraq.”A command post of the terrorists and up to 80 (IS) fighters including nine natives of the Northern Caucasus were destroyed in the area of Mayadeen,” the ministry said, adding that another 40 IS fighters were killed around the town of Albu Kamal.Mayadeen is one of the Islamic State group’s last bastions in Syria.In another air strike, more than 60 foreign mercenaries from the former Soviet Union, Tunisia, and Egypt were killed in the Euphrates Valley south of Deir Ezzor.The ministry said “large numbers of foreign mercenaries” were coming into the Syrian border town of Albu Kamal from Iraq.It also said Russian forces had killed senior IS commanders Omar al-Shishani, Alaa al-din al-Shishani and Salah al-Din al-Shishani, all natives of the Northern Caucasus.Moscow reported their deaths after taking “several days” to confirm the results of an earlier strike on the northern outskirts of Albu Kamal which destroyed an IS command post with more than 30 fighters including the natives of the Northern Caucasus.- ‘Omar the Chechen’ -=======================The Pentagon announced in March 2016 that American forces had killed Shishani, one of the most notorious faces of IS known for his thick red beardShishani, whose nom de guerre means “Omar the Chechen,” came from the former Soviet state of Georgia’s Pankisi Gorge region, which is populated mainly by ethnic Chechens.He fought as a Chechen rebel against Russian forces before joining the Georgian military in 2006, and fought Russian forces again in Georgia in 2008.He later resurfaced in northern Syria as the commander of a group of foreign fighters and became a senior leader within IS.The Russian defence ministry was not immediately available for further comment.Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, disagreed with Moscow’s report.”Salah al-Din al-Shishani is still alive and is somewhere in the regions controlled by jihadist groups in the west of Aleppo province. He is a famous commander, and his jihadist group is allied with the jihadists of the Al-Nusra front but only in their fight against the regime,” he said.”He has no links with IS.The advances against IS in Deir Ezzor have resulted in a heavy civilian death toll through Russian and coalition air raids.The Observatory said Russian air strikes on Thursday night killed 14 people, including three children, fleeing across the Euphrates on rafts near Mayadeen.Since it intervened in Syria in 2015, Russia has not acknowledged any civilian deaths from its strikes, and it dismisses the Observatory’s reporting as biased.Moscow has been staging air strikes in support of its ally Damascus targeting both IS in Deir Ezzor province and rival jihadists led by Al-Qaeda’s former Syria affiliate in Idlib province in the northwest.
Map of SatkhiraDetectives arrested the wife and daughter of jamaat leader Gazi Nazrul Islam, who is contesting the 11th parliamentary election with BNP ticket from Satkhira-4 constituency, from the district jail premises on charge of planning sabotage on Tuesday, reports UNB.The arrestees are Maksuda Khanam, wife of Nazrul Islam and her daughter Sharmin Sultana Khuku.Ali Ahmed Hashemi, sub-inspector of district DB police, said police arrested Gazi Nazrul on charge of sabotage activities on 16 December.Detectives arrested Maksuda and Sharmin while they were returning home after visiting Nazrul at the jail, said Hashemi.They were organizing people for carrying out sabotage in the name of election campaign, he said.
A man suspected of attempting to hijack a Biman Bangladesh airliner was killed in a commando operation by the army personnel at Shah Amanat International Airport in Chattogram on Sunday evening.The alleged hijacker was Mahadi, the general officer commanding of Chattogram cantonment told newsmen, attributing to a crewmember of the aircraft.The hijacker held a crewmember, flight steward Sagor, hostage for hours at gun point before being killed by the commandoes, according to a press statement of Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) department.He was shot inside the aircraft which was cordoned off immediately after its emergency landing there. He was brought out dead after the operation, said the GOC, major general Motiur Rahman.UNB reports: All the 142 passengers and pilots of the Dubai-bound flight from Dhaka earlier disembarked safely from the aircraft, said Shakil Miraj, Biman general manager (public relations).Gunman trying to hijack Biman aircraft killedHe said the Dubai-bound flight took off from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport after 5:00pm and it made landing at the Chattogram airport around 5:40pm.Biman manager (PR) Tasmin Akhter said the flight made the emergency landing suspecting a passenger to be a hijacker.Tasmin, however, said it was not still clear whether it was a hijacking bid.Members of Rapid Action Battalion, Bangladesh Army and the police had then cordoned off the aircraft.Officer-in-charge of Patenga police station in Chattogram Abul Quashem said two bullets were fired in the aircraft.Contacted, home minister Asaduzzaman Khan said around 7:10pm that they were still not clear what actually happened in the aircraft.Earlier, civil aviation and tourism secretary Mohibul Haque told UNB all the passengers were evacuated from the aircraft following the suspicious behaviour of a passenger.
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and US Secretary of State Mike PompeoBangladesh has sought US support to create a safe zone in Rakhine for Rohingyas, monitored by international human rights groups, with credible international pressure on Myanmar for their safe return.Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen met US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Washington on Monday and discussed the situation.This was the first meeting between the two leaders since their assumption of office in respective governments.Issues featuring in the meeting were: repatriation of the Rohingyas and creation of credible international pressure on Myanmar in that respect, deportation of Bangabandhu’s killer Rashed Chowdhury from USA to Bangladesh, shared vision of a Free and Open Indo-Pacific, US investments in Bangladesh, duty and quota free access of Bangladesh’s garments products in the US market and US-Bangladesh partnership in multiple sectors.He informed that Bangladesh at its own expense has developed the island “Bhashanchar” into a livable place in which one lakh Rohingyas are planned to be relocated in coordination with UN agencies and different aid groups, according to Bangladesh Embassy in Washington.The US secretary of state re-assured that the one million plus forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals have to return to Myanmar without any form of fear and persecution.He said it is the responsibility of the Myanmar government and military to create conducive environment so that the Rohingyas feel safe to return home.The US secretary of state reiterated that US would stand beside Bangladesh (both politically and financially) in finding a permanent solution to the Rohingya crisis.He also lauded the humanitarian gesture of the government led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for temporarily sheltering the persecuted Rohingyas.Regarding deportation of Bangabandhu’s self-confessed and convicted killer Rashed Chowdhury from the USA, the Bangladesh foreign minister pointed out that he is fleeing justice.He said this is essential to carry out a vital common agenda of both countries pertaining to Counter-terrorism and Countering-Violent Extremism and upholding rule of law.Both leaders agreed that for greater prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region, vital energy and infrastructure projects need to be implemented on regional partnership basis.In that respect, leaders of the region need to work together on issues such as governance, accountability, rule of law and maritime security.Momen stated that Bangladesh is lauded internationally for its impressive development journey.He sought more investment from the USA in the oil and gas sector and US presence in the Special Economic Zones.Minister Momen sought US support to the candidature of Bangladesh in the upcoming election to the post of deputy director general of International Organisation for Migration (IOM).Later in the day, the visiting Bangladesh minister held meetings with senior officials of the US State Department and Deputy National Security Adviser Charles Kupperman. Bangladesh Ambassador to the USA Mohammad Ziauddin accompanied the minister at the meetings.
Map of Tanzania locating Lake Victoria, where a ferry capsized Thursday. Photo: AFPThe death toll in a ferry capsize in Lake Victoria climbed to more than 100 on Friday, as Tanzanian rescue workers pressed on with searches to find scores of more people feared drowned.The MV Nyerere may have been carrying as many as 200 passengers—double the ferry’s capacity—when it capsized close to the pier on Ukara Island on Thursday, according to reports on state media.Witnesses reached by AFP said the ferry sank when passengers rushed to one side to disembark as it approached the dock.The death toll rose to over 100 on Friday, according to Tanzania’s police chief Simon Sirro, cited by state radio TBC Taifa.Mwanza governor John Mongella had earlier said the number of survivors was 40, but it was unclear whether any new survivors had been found since rescue operations resumed with police and army divers on Friday morning.“Operations are continuing,” he said.Rescue operations were suspended overnight and hopes are fading that more survivors might still be found, a day after the vessel sank.State television cited witnesses reporting that more than 200 people had boarded the ferry at Bugolora, a town on the larger Ukerewe Island, where it was market day when locals said the vessel was usually packed with people and goods.“I have not heard from either my father or my younger brother who were on the ferry. They had gone to the market in Bugolora to buy a school uniform and other supplies for the new school term,” said Domina Maua, who was among those seeking information about loved ones.Davita Ngenda, an elderly woman in Ukara, had already received bad news. “My son is among the bodies recovered,” she said, weeping. “He had gone with his wife but she has not been found yet. My God, what did I do to deserve this?”Sebastian John, a teacher, said such tragedies had become part of life for those living on the lake.“Since my birth, people have gone to their deaths on this lake, but what are we to do? We did not choose to be born here, we have nowhere to go,” he said.It remains unclear how many people are still missing.Overloading and ‘negligence’ -Tanzania’s Electrical, Mechanical and Services Agency, which is responsible for ferry services, said it was unknown how many passengers were aboard the MV Nyerere.The ageing ferry, whose hull and propellers were all that remained visible after it overturned, was also carrying cargo, including sacks of maize, bananas and cement, when it capsized around 50 metres (55 yards) from Ukara dock.The cause of the accident was not immediately clear, but overloading is frequently to blame for such incidents.President John Magufuli was “deeply saddened” by the disaster and called on Tanzanians to “stay calm during these difficult times,” according to spokesman Gerson Msigwa.The country’s opposition, however, accused the government of “negligence”.“We have often raised concerns about the poor condition of this ferry, but the government turned a deaf ear. We have repeatedly denounced this negligence,” said John Mnyika, deputy secretary general of Chadema, the main opposition party.Mnyika said overloading was “another failure of the authorities” and criticised “inadequate relief efforts as well as delays” in the rescue operation.With a surface area of 70,000 square kilometres (27,000 square miles), oval-shaped Lake Victoria is roughly the size of Ireland and is shared by Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya.Capsizes are not uncommon in the massive lake, and the number of fatalities is often high due to a shortage of life jackets and the fact that many people in the region cannot swim.The deadliest such accident in recent decades was in May 1996, when around 800 people died after their ferry sank on the way to Mwanza in Tanzania.Waters in the lake can be rough and boats are frequently poorly maintained, while ferry operators often fail to record the number of passengers on board.Around 20 people were killed in December 2016 when their boat overturned in Lake Victoria as it was carrying passengers to Uganda’s mainland for Christmas holidays.And in March 2012, only two survivors were found after a boat believed to be carrying around 60 people capsized on the lake in Uganda.
Chief election commissioner KM Nurul Huda. File photoNoting that 100 per cent voter turnout in any polling station is not ‘normal’, the chief election commissioner on Sunday said the commission has nothing to do with it once the gazette of the election result is published, reports UNB.”I think, hundred per cent voter turnout in any polling station is not a normal matter,” CEC KM Nurul Huda said.He made the remark while replying to a question from reporters after inaugurating a voter list updating training programme at Lalbagh Model School and College in the city.In the 30-December general election, the voter turnout was 100 per cent in at least 69 polling stations under different constituencies, according to the EC centre-wise election results.The CEC said, “Presiding officers usually dispose of polling stations-based disputes immediately after the balloting. Then the returning officers send the compiled results to us. We didn’t receive any complaint at that time. So, now the EC has nothing to do.”Nurul Huda explained that the gazette of any election result is published soon after the balloting.”Once the gazette is published, the EC has nothing to do. So, there’s no scope to investigate it.”He, however, said there is a scope to file cases with the court in this regard. “And the court has the scope to examine it. If any case is filed with the court, then we’ll have to do what the court will say,” he said.In the future, the CEC said, votes will be cast through electronic voting machines (EVMs) to prevent election irregularities.
Bobby Ross Jr.,Load Comments,High court declines New Jersey preservation grants case Share This! News ? Photos of the Week Share This! Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,About the authorView All Posts Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Catholicism Pope: Vatican next year to open archives on wartime Pius XII Instagram apostasy stirs controversy over Christian ‘influencers’ August 30, 2019 TagsChurches of Christ Clyde E. Brothers Jr convicted sex offender homepage featured sex abuse sexual abuse Top Story,You may also like Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email News Share This! Share This! By: Bobby Ross Jr. By: Bobby Ross Jr. Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,UNIONTOWN, Pa. (RNS) — After a longtime youth minister’s recent conviction on corruption of minors and indecent exposure charges, a judge in this western Pennsylvania community did what the Uniontown Church of Christ’s elders refused to do.The judge told Clyde E. Brothers Jr. to stay away from church services.Brothers, 68, served for many years as the volunteer youth minister for the 100-member Uniontown congregation. Since at least the 1980s, he also interacted with hundreds of children as a founding board member for Camp Concern — a Bible camp directed and sponsored by members of Churches of Christ. Generations of parents entrusted Brothers with instilling Christian faith and values in their children in this city of 10,000.Victims’ relatives say his case points to a problem that plagues not just the Roman Catholic Church and the Southern Baptist Convention — both embroiled in major sex abuse scandals — but also the nation’s 12,000 autonomous Churches of Christ.“It truly is an epidemic, such sickness,” said one victim’s mother, a former Uniontown church member whose name is being withheld to protect her son’s identity.The allegations that Brothers used his volunteer church and camp positions to prey on young boys were traumatic enough, several current and former Uniontown church members said.Former youth minister Clyde E. Brothers Jr. leaves a Fayette County, Pa., courtroom after being convicted of indecent exposure and corruption of minors in October 2018. Photo by Mark Hofmann/Uniontown Herald-StandardBut church leaders’ decision to allow Brothers to keep worshiping with the congregation made it worse, they said.“I was told I had hatred in my heart, and I needed to forgive,” said member Debbie Williams, a former youth group sponsor who had traveled with Brothers and church teens to numerous Bible bowls and youth rallies.Another longtime member said her son, now in his 30s, was one of four victims whom Brothers identified by name to the Pennsylvania State Police.“It’s almost like Clyde is more important than the victims are,” the mother said about the perpetrator remaining in the pews.Bob Coldren, one of the church’s three elders, stressed in an interview that Brothers twice came forward at church and repented of his sins.“Just like anybody else who comes forward at church, is it my place to judge him on his sins … or is it God’s to judge him of those?” said Coldren, who is also Brothers’ brother-in-law. “If I judge him if he’s sincere or not sincere, I’m judging wrong because I can’t see what’s in his heart.“I’m in the middle of a bad situation. No matter what I do, I’m wrong,” Coldren added. “So if I say, ‘Absolutely not, he didn’t repent,’ then God’s going to be on me. I’m not going by the world. I’m going by what’s in Scripture.”Coldren said the elders had taken steps to protect children and ensure the former youth minister was “never out of anybody’s sight.”Brothers was removed from his church leadership roles after the allegations surfaced in late 2016.Asked if the elders supported the victims, Coldren replied, “Yes, we were very supportive of the victims, if they asked for the help. But none of them ever came to us for anything. What do you do when nobody asks? You can’t help somebody who doesn’t ask for help.”The sign outside the Uniontown Church of Christ in Pennsylvania on a rainy day in February 2019. Photo by Bobby Ross Jr.More than two years ago, three of Brothers’ fellow board members at Camp Concern — conducted each summer at Raccoon Creek State Park, about 25 miles west of Pittsburgh — confronted Brothers at his home.Brothers broke down and confessed to inappropriate behavior with “many, many, so many boys,” said Terry Lafferty, one of the board members and minister for the North Hills Church of Christ in Pittsburgh.“He said, ‘I’m evil, just evil,’” Lafferty said of the December 2016 meeting. “And I thought that he was really going to open up and confess to all this stuff because there were a lot of names that started coming out.”Brothers agreed to go with Lafferty, Richard Walton and Keith Wolfgong to make a statement at the Pennsylvania State Police station in this city about 50 miles south of Pittsburgh.By the time Brothers got to the station, though, he had become much less forthcoming, Lafferty said.Some allegations against Brothers could not be prosecuted because the statute of limitations had expired, victims advocates said. Other claims involved alleged victims who were unwilling to testify.In at least one case, church members complained that law enforcement officials did not follow up on leads. Fayette County Assistant District Attorney Wendy O’Brien, who prosecuted the corruption of minors and indecent exposure charges filed against Brothers in March 2017, declined an interview request.At Brothers’ trial in Fayette County District Court last October, a 38-year-old man testified that he was 13 or 14 when the Uniontown youth minister took him to a church event in Arkansas and inappropriately touched him.At first, Brothers took him and other young people to fun activities, such as seeing movies and driving go-karts. But then the youth minister began showing pornographic movies to the boys, the man testified, according to?the Uniontown Herald-Standard. Eventually, Brothers performed lewd acts in front of him and encouraged him to do likewise, the man said, reporting that this happened “at least 50” times.“This man stole my son’s childhood as well as his innocence and basically ruined his life,” the man’s mother said in a victim impact statement. She alleged that the youth minister drugged and molested her son “on several occasions” and threatened to harm his family if he told anyone.“I believe that Clyde Brothers deserves nothing less than the most severe punishment allowed by law, of course,” the mother told Judge Steve P. Leskinen before Brothers’ sentencing in January. “But I know in my heart that the more severe punishment will be the one that I pray God delivers to Clyde Brothers because he chose to prey on innocent children in God’s name.”Another mother directed her victim impact statement to Brothers, who did not speak when offered the opportunity by the judge.“Not one of your victims remain in church,” the mother told Brothers during the court hearing. “You have affected them in more ways than you could imagine. Were all these activities just so you could gain access to the boys? One is in jail. Some have turned to drugs and have trouble holding down a job. Counseling doesn’t help. And two have committed suicide.“And all the while,” she added, “you have been walking around a free man while these boys are trying to deal with what you have done to them.”Victims’ advocate Jimmy Hinton, left, with his mother, Clara Hinton, and sister Alex Howlett at the Somerset Church of Christ in Pennsylvania. Their father and husband, John Hinton, a longtime minister, is serving prison time for sexually abusing young girls. RNS photo by Bobby Ross Jr.Jimmy Hinton, a certification specialist with the advocacy organization GRACE (Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment), blames “bad theology” for congregations allowing abusers to remain in the pews alongside victims and their families.“Shepherds are to guard the sheep from the wolves with their lives. Most churches I encounter have never been trained to distinguish the wolves from sheep, so they invite wolves in under the guise of ‘forgiveness and repentance,’” said Hinton, who preaches for the Somerset Church of Christ, about 60 miles east of Uniontown.Hinton became a victims advocate after his sister Alex Howlett confided to him in 2011 that their father, John Hinton — who spent 27 years as the Somerset church’s minister — had sexually abused her when she was young.Jimmy Hinton’s report to authorities?prompted an investigation that resulted in his father pleading guilty to sexually assaulting and taking nude photographs of four young girls, ages 4 to 7. John Hinton is serving a 30- to 60-year sentence in a Pennsylvania state prison.Discussing the Brothers case, Jimmy Hinton pointed to questions about whether the former youth minister has named all his victims, as well as Brothers’ decision to file a post-conviction appeal, as indicative of his heart.Clyde E. Brothers Jr.’s attorney filed a post-conviction appeal, with some portions redacted before being made public.“Forgiveness is conditioned upon repentance,” Hinton said. “A repentant sexual predator would name every victim, submit to the court authorities and would never do anything to retraumatize his victims or their families.“Because they are wolves, they don’t care.”Victims’ families say they are angry with Brothers but also angry at themselves for failing to notice warning signs — such as the former youth minister inviting boys on overnight trips with him.“The anger that I feel, it just never goes away,” the mother of one victim said, lamenting that her son’s experience with Brothers caused him to give up on God and renounce his faith.Others gathered around the table nodded their heads and reported similar experiences, saying their grown sons won’t have anything to do with the church.Judge Leskinen sentenced Brothers to up to five years in prison. However, the former youth minister was released on electronic monitoring pending an appeal of his convictions.As part of his ruling, the judge told Brothers to give up his firearms.Leskinen also ordered Brothers not to attend the Uniontown church “until and unless there is a signed waiver of this provision … by the governing authority of the said Church.”Judge Steve Leskinen ordered Clyde E. Brothers Jr. not to attend the Uniontown Church of Christ. Image courtesy of Fayette County, Pa. Court RecordsIn a post-sentence motion in late January, attorney Jack R. Heneks Jr. said Brothers’ convictions for offenses alleged to have occurred in 1992 and 1993 should fall outside Pennsylvania’s statute of limitations. Heneks also asserted that the judge’s prohibition against Brothers attending the Uniontown church “violates the defendant’s First Amendment rights to freedom of religion and association.”After Brothers’ conviction, church elders quickly announced a congregational meeting to discuss whether to provide the waiver and allow Brothers to return to the Uniontown church.About 30 members attended the congregational meeting, Williams said, and “all but three or four said that we didn’t want him to worship with us and to go by what the judge said.” Some said the elders could take the Lord’s Supper to his home.For now, the elders have not requested the waiver, and Brothers has not returned to church.But eventually, the leaders will have another meeting with the congregation, Coldren said. They wanted to let a little time pass first.“I’m not saying we are or are not going to let him back in,” Coldren said. “What’s the difference if he walks in our doors or if he walks in another church’s?”(Bobby Ross Jr. writes for the Christian Chronicle, where this story first appeared. The original version of this story can be found here. This article has been updated.) Bobby Ross Jr. By: Bobby Ross Jr. Share This! Photos of the Week August 30, 2019 Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email As Amazon burns, Vatican prepares for summit on region’s faith and sustainabilit … August 30, 2019
Share This! March 12, 2019 at 3:48 pm Mark Connelly says: March 12, 2019 at 1:53 pm Elagabalus says: NoMoreBadTown says: March 12, 2019 at 10:53 am March 13, 2019 at 11:55 am Actually, both churches LOVE gays and have hopes for their salvation. Gay SEXUAL BEHAVIOR is the huge SIN against nature that offends God and man, and has to be repented of, or avoided. March 12, 2019 at 12:26 pm March 13, 2019 at 2:10 pm Ah..I said you don’t do well here. Show me where I said “we’re more godly” or just go away. Sandi in EL says: March 12, 2019 at 3:53 pm March 12, 2019 at 3:45 pm Prove it. March 14, 2019 at 1:50 pm You “should probably not be making baseless attacks on others”. March 11, 2019 at 10:24 pm March 14, 2019 at 11:50 am Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment. March 11, 2019 at 11:23 am Similarly, seeSee https://mormonandgay.lds.org/https://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/12/us/politics/utah-passes-antidiscrimination-bill-backed-by-mormon-leaders.html The point is that all religions are cults, there’s no real difference. Any religion that isn’t yours, you call a cult. And the adherents of those other religions think the same of yours. Catechism of the Catholic Church:2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition. If you’re seeing hate, you’re looking in a mirror. Good. The Church should love its heretics… but not give them an authoritative teaching position. OR, the “so-called ecumenism” makes everyone involved LOVE ONE ANOTHER. March 12, 2019 at 2:17 pm He also cannot seem to understand people’s commentsThomas – reprobate mind, Why would he even care about a cult? ThomasA says: March 13, 2019 at 6:14 am March 14, 2019 at 12:51 pm March 13, 2019 at 10:52 am NoMoreBadTown says: Mark Connelly says: March 11, 2019 at 3:52 pm Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis met Saturday (March 9) with the leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the first such meeting of its kind, on the eve of the dedication of the church’s huge new temple in Rome.The Vatican offered no details of Francis’ audience with the church president, Russell Nelson, and other leaders. The Latter-day Saints said it was the first-ever meeting between a pope and head of their church and said the two men discussed religious liberty, family and youth, among other topics.“We have much in common,” Nelson tweeted afterward. “The differences in doctrine are real_and they’re important_but they’re not nearly as important as the things we have in common.”Nelson and the 14 elders who make up the leadership of the church, widely known as the Mormons, are in town for the dedication Sunday of their new temple. The lush complex features an oval-shaped marble house of worship crowning a hilltop and a visitor center featuring a larger-than-life marble statue of Christ surrounded by smaller statues of the apostles.The Latter-day Saints said the visit to Rome was the first time their entire leadership had gathered outside the U.S. When he was elected he said “I am no theologian.” and has been proving himself correct ever since.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WEchg1KhmTYFortunately to this point the damage is minimal and he was 82 in December. March 14, 2019 at 12:09 pm Ben in Oakland says: Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email March 12, 2019 at 4:02 pm March 11, 2019 at 2:34 pm Perhaps Jim, but his caring gives authenticity to a cult March 12, 2019 at 2:45 pm Ben in Oakland says: Catholics are more perfected Christians…we have the full set of Sacraments that God intended us to have. You never seem to be able to put together a good piece of logic Ben, and you should ask yourself why?What in your education and formation or genetics is missing? Baizuo says: Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Jim Johnson says: nope. I can see who the enemy is. Too bad the other Christians who are not the right sort of Christian, people that you so willingly condemn as being cultists, don’t see who you are. but I can. And this, dear lady, is why your faith is being busy destroying itself from within.Not my problem. I’ll just watch you do it, and enjoy some of my schadenfreudelicious popcorn. TagsChurch of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ecumenism Pope Francis Russell Nelson,You may also like Oh you poor, persecuted thing. Jesus is God. Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Sandi in EL says: Yes, they are, by definition: a cult is a system of religious veneration and devotion directed toward a particular figure or object. Christianity is a system of religious veneration and devotion directed toward a particular figure, Jesus Christ. Ergo, Christianity is a cult. QED. How is it not? It meets the criteria laid out in the definition of a cult. Ergo, it is a cult, whether you like it or not. frightening Jim Johnson says: Michael G Warren says: Mark Connelly says: News March 13, 2019 at 7:14 am Jim, we were getting along so well. Why are you posting a smart-alec answer? It belittles you. You know perfectly well what Jesus meant when He said to forgive 490 times: it is largely metaphorical in the sense of who is going to keep track of how many times they forgive someone? Even someone with OCD would find it difficult to keep track of how many times they had forgiven the same person.As I have met Angels, I think that you are being a bit silly about my favourite TV show. Angels are not pedophiles, otherwise they would not be Angels. So no one is going to “cop a feel” or “a touch up” from one of the Lord’s messengers.Maybe you’re just in a flippant mood, and are just taking the piss out of me. Baizuo says: March 12, 2019 at 11:10 am You were once not sure that Catholics are Christians, and said so. Are you referring to the Mormon opinion of the Catholic Church, or the catholic opinion of the Mormon church? March 11, 2019 at 2:33 pm March 13, 2019 at 6:18 am Sandi in EL says: No. What I said was, not all Catholics are Christian. If you are going to repeat what I said please get it correct.The Mormon assembly is a cult March 13, 2019 at 1:42 pm March 11, 2019 at 4:31 pm Sandi in EL says: By: Associated Press March 13, 2019 at 6:21 am I have. Several, in fact. Which one in particular holds the proof? None that I have encountered. You don’t understand the meaning of perfected apparently in the philosophical/theological sense. But that’s ok. It isn’t a religion – it is a cult Jesus told us to love one another as He has loved us, to turn the other cheek in our missionary endeavours (which is often misinterpreted that we shouldn’t defend ourseleves from physical attacks, that men should allow their wife, mother and daughters to be raped and killed), to revile not against the revilers, to be patient and long-suffering. Thus, we should not be making baseless attacks on others. One of Jesus’ Apostles said, “If a man says he loves God, but hateth his brother is a liar. Revelation and other NT writings tell us that liars will go to Hell. Remember that we are all sinners, and that we should remove the beam of wood from our own eye, before trying to remove a speck of dust from another person’s eye. The scripture in Matthew about judging others, means “not to judge unrighteously, to repent of our own sins before judging others, then judge righteously with justice, compassion and mercy.” March 12, 2019 at 12:32 pm Share This! March 13, 2019 at 12:40 pm March 11, 2019 at 8:40 pm kronzypantz says: March 12, 2019 at 10:15 pm Islam follows two idols – Muhummad and what they call Allah With love like that, I have no need of enemies. NoMoreBadTown says: March 12, 2019 at 3:26 pm March 13, 2019 at 8:57 am He dulled his knife. He dulled his knife.Decency forbids explaining how. Ted Mccartin says: NoMoreBadTown says: Share This! March 12, 2019 at 6:49 pm Associated Press Ben in Oakland says: Islam has no idols, and in fact forbids them explicitly. Catholicism has a lot of statues of gods, demigods, angels, saints, and so forth, though it claims that these statues are not idols.It sounds like one more time, you are damning anyone who isn’t you, while shining forth as a paragon of intolerance and ignorance. Sandi in EL says: No they are not all cults. Baizuo says: March 13, 2019 at 6:20 am Ben’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer. NoMoreBadTown says: Ben in Oakland says: March 13, 2019 at 8:57 am Which one? News Sandi in EL says: It must be awful being a White liberal elistist with an entire political party at your Beck and call. Unbelievable hardships you fellas face. Someone who says “catholics are more perfected Christians” followed by a completely unsubstantiated claim that “we’re more godly” in a response to a comment to a person who has claimed that Catholics are not Christians…should probably not be making baseless attacks on others. You have a nice day, dearie. ThomasA says: not at all. Mormons are quite large The definition of a cult (Doubleday) is a “system of extravagant religious observances and devotions to a person, cause, or thing.” In this case that person being our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Why wouldn’t the Pope or any decent person care about that? By: Associated Press You are your own enemy Ben March 12, 2019 at 1:00 pm March 13, 2019 at 12:25 pm March 13, 2019 at 10:56 am LB says: NoMoreBadTown says: Read a Bible You forget Ben, when you chose homosexuality, Christ allowed it and turned you over to a reprobate mind to do that which is not good. That is why your perceptions cannot be trusted. Philosophy and Theology/religion are not the same thing. Philosophy is the invention of the human mind, and may or may not contain Eternal truths and principles, and theoretically may expose a person to Absolute Reality. However, Satan is the “father of all lies” and the “author of contention.” I have read all of the great philosophers, and much of it was a waste of time. I love Plato’s Dialogues, but they are not of the same value as the Holy Bible. With hindsight, I would have preferred using the time to study the Bible.Christianity, on the other hand in comparison to philosophy, is built on a foundation of Eternal truths and principles, and reveals these to those who are in tune with the Holy Spirirt, the Ultimate Reality of God. Faith is a gift of the Holy Spirit. But first we must have a desire to believe. Our brains are hardwired, according to an article in TIME magazine, to believe in God. The NT tells us that hearing the Word of God arouses something inalienable in both our Collective Unconscious and Personal Unconscious. Practising the Lord’s doctrines while still in the desire to believe stage, enables the Holy Spirit to start changing that basic desire to believe into Faith. March 11, 2019 at 12:59 pm Ted, thank you for the beautiful letter you wrote to me, but Disqus/RNS did not post it on this site. Maybe it was too long. Anyway, we agree: the truth originates in Jesus Christ, and is communicated to us by the Holy Spirit. But we have to ask for this knowledge with sincerity, believing, doubting nothing. Each person has to prove this to themselves. Many are called, few are chosen. Christ is perfect. Thanks again, Ted. Sandi in EL says: Share This! March 12, 2019 at 12:29 pm To non-religious outsiders it makes no difference. They’re man-made philosophies. Some are older and larger. Some have what might be define as sillier rituals and beliefs. The term cult is used as a slur. Not in this instance. They are cults.1 John 4:2 – 2By this you will know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming, and is already in the world at this time. March 13, 2019 at 6:22 am The only difference between a religion and a cult is the number of participants. Christianity follows idols as well – Jesus, and what they call “god”, and what they call “the holy ghost”, and Mary, and what they call “saints”, etc., etc., etc.All religions are cults. News March 13, 2019 at 9:42 am No, it isn’t a cult Mark Connelly says: March 11, 2019 at 1:30 pm Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,About the authorView All Posts NoMoreBadTown says: No Michael – a cult in this instance is of satan, trying to emulate Christianity. Cults typically follow an idol – islam for example. floydlee says: Not true, but you really don’t want to know the Truth, which originates in Jesus Christ and is communicated to us by the Holy Spirit. (I’m only writing because Disqus hasn’t deleted my account yet). Ted Mccartin says: March 12, 2019 at 2:23 pm Michael G Warren says: Michael G Warren says: Sandi in EL says: March 13, 2019 at 1:54 pm Ben in Oakland says: March 12, 2019 at 11:01 pm Sandi in EL says: The Horror of Babylon You only have to forgive someone 490 times? After that what?Remember, readers, if you are touched by an angel report it to the police. March 11, 2019 at 1:57 pm Mark Connelly says: https://disqus.com/home/discussion/religionnews/pope_meets_with_mormon_leadership_in_rome_to_dedicate_temple/#comment-4376164326 Just as authentic as any other religion. Sandi in EL says: Sandi in EL says: NoMoreBadTown says: March 13, 2019 at 12:40 pm I wonder why RNS selected for the article an unrelated photo of the Pope by himself with a somber expression. Photos of the meeting with gracious smiles are easily found on the internet. Share This! Anti-extremism program won’t stop white hate, say Muslims who’ve seen its … August 30, 2019 Atheists are anti-theists/Deists and Anti-Christs. You will never win them over: ALL religions are cults to them. As far as each of the four main branches of Christianity are concerned (Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant/Reformed, Restorationist), mostly they considered each other to be heterodox heretics.The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is Pluralist.“Question: Why would the true church of Jesus Christ be comprised of only a small percentage of the population of the Earth?”“Christ specifically mentioned to His followers that they were the “salt of the earth”No matter how many member of the Church there may be at any time inhistory, it appears that being the smaller number among a largerpopulation has long been the problem of the Gospel. This may be why Christ specifically mentioned to His followers that they were the “salt of the earth.” To modern English speakers, that idiom is used to mean good, average people, but that wasn’t what Christ meant. He was speaking to very few who believed him. Those who believed were to do for the earth what salt does to a pot of stew or soup. A little seasoning nevertheless plays an important part.Luke 13:20-21:And again he said, Wherefore unto shall I liken the kingdom of God? It is like leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened.Christ never answered the specific question of why there were so few believers, but he did tell those few believers that they played an important role.An angel showed Nephi a vision of the last days and the Church numbers were described as few in comparison to the rest of the worldIn 1 Nephi 14:12, an angel shows Nephi a vision of the last days and the Church numbers were described as few in comparison to the rest of the world.There’s no reason to believe that Latter-day Saints will ever out number the largest religions (Catholics 1.4 billion, Sunni Muslims 1.4 billion, Latter-day Saints about 15 million, Seventh Day Adventists about 15 million) based on this vision. Remember that when the gospel is finally preached in all the world, the Second Coming will occur and the end of the current condition will follow. Latter-day Saints believe that all mankind will have an opportunity to hear the Gospel but that most of the population of the Earth will hear it in the Spirit World (Afterlife/Paradise for the righteous, the spirit prison/Hell for the wicked). Those who had no opportunity to hear it in mortality will have that opportunity then. When you consider the small minority of the earth’s population throughout all of history that even knew about Jesus Christ at least 10 billion people have lived on Earth), it should not surprise us that many in our day will not hear about Him either. Latter-day Saints believe that God is just and is concerned about all of His children. He will see to it that all mankind are taught and judged justly [and mercifully]”[We are not “Mormons” – Mormon was an American Christian Prophet who lived circa 400 AD/CE. He abridged The Book of Mormon. We do not worship Joseph Smith Jr or any of his successors, including Pres. Russell M. Nelson.We worship Heavenly Father/Elohim/Man of Holiness (each time Jesus is called “Son of man” in the NT, “Man” should be capitalised), in the name of God the Son, Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ (Yeshua the Messiah).The name change began towards the end of Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley’s ministry as the 15th President-Prophet of the Church (1995-2008)].“Many of the goals of the Plan of Salvation are achieved even without being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.Among the most important “purposes of life” according to the Plan of Salvation are the following:1. Receiving a physical body.2. Experiencing trials, pain, and other challenges, and having the opportunity to try to overcome them.3. Experiencing joy and happiness.4.Developing Christ-like attributes.Developing Christ-like attributes is vital to our eternal happiness and development, and living a mortal life accelerates us along that path. All of these experiences are perfectly and regularly attainable without being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In fact, they are perfectly attainable without even being a Christian. For some, they are even attainable without believing in God. (on quora.com I upvoted the values of three Asian Indians).That being said, there are tangible and extremely advantageous benefits to being a member of the LDS Church, and more specifically of knowing and understanding why we are here. Those advantages, though, are not necessary for a successful experience in mortality. The saving ordinances and covenants we make through proper priesthood authorityaccelerate and magnify our purposes for being here, and eventually they will be available to all people whether in mortality or post-mortality. In the meantime, billions of people are here living out the plan of salvation with a bit of ignorance about it, but happily and successfully nonetheless.” FAIRMormon (c) 2019I thought most of you people were reasonable. You wouldn’t know a cult if it bit you on the arse. (I am only posting because disqus hasn’t deleted my account yet). This nonsense pretending to be robust and vigorous debate is nothing more than ignorance and bigotry. I am glad to have requested disqus to delete my account. then read it again Ben in Oakland says: March 13, 2019 at 8:53 am ThomasA says: Ted Mccartin says: March 11, 2019 at 1:58 pm LB says: Sandi in EL says: As disciples of Jesus Christ, we are commanded to (1) love our neighbour as ourselves; (2) love one another as He has loved us. Arguments over doctrine leads to hate, as each denomination tries to prove that it is the “True Bride” of the “Bridegroom”, which He will claim at midnight when He arrives at the “Wedding Feast”. Neither Pope Francis I or President Russell M. Nelson are liars. You are drawing a long bow with your unrighteous judgement. The Latter-day saints were subjected to genocide attempts in both Missouri and Illinois, when the Governors of both States – Lillburn Boggs and Thomas Ford – signed extermination orders against them.I am of Irish descent. I am well aware of Oliver Cromwell’s response to the uprising of 1641. Cromwell was not even a “real” Christian let alone a faithful Puritan, when he slaughtered the Irish who surrendered. And despite the efforts of some good people e.g. Queen Victoria, The Society of Friends (Quakers), the Choktaw Native Americans, etc., to help the Irish during the Irish Potato famine aka The Great Hunger, absentee landlords in England wanted the genocide of their Irish tenants. They spoke about it openly in the House of Lords.That Catholics and Latter-day Saints are able to engage with each other as loving disciples of Jesus Christ.Would you prefer that the Catholic Church go back to the Inquisitions and Witch Trials?Or as a disciple of Jesus Christ, would you rather follow the Lord’s commandments? Sandi in EL says: March 13, 2019 at 2:45 pm When you can be fired from your job for being gay, or kicked out of your apartment for being gay, or beat to a pulp for being gay, as happens all the time, that’s persecution. At this moment, only 21 of the 50 states have statutes on the books to protect gay people from such treatment under threat of penalty. That means for the majority of states gay people are vulnerable to being fired, evicted, or even killed for being who they are. That’s persecution. Because he’s a nice person. Mark Connelly says: March 11, 2019 at 5:46 pm Ben in Oakland says: “Catholicism has a lot of statues of gods, demigods, angels, saints, andso forth, though it claims that these statues are not idols.”Unfortunately for you all comments like that appeal to are people as ignorant as yourself.Judaism, Islam, and Christianity all share a belief in orders of beings not human. March 12, 2019 at 11:45 am NoMoreBadTown says: March 12, 2019 at 3:56 pm March 13, 2019 at 2:45 pm March 13, 2019 at 1:56 pm Michael G Warren says: Jim Johnson says: Mark Connelly says: Jim Johnson says: March 14, 2019 at 11:31 am Sandi in EL says: Fearan Iarthair says: Words mean things. You don’t get to redefine words to suit your own biases. Your religion, just like all others, is a cult. SorryNotSorry. the Truth, which originates in Jesus Christ and is communicated to us by the Holy SpiritProve it. March 13, 2019 at 11:49 am March 11, 2019 at 4:31 pm Sandi in EL says: Sure.Sandi has denounced you and other catholics, but it’s ok, because she’s antigay. That’s what matters to you, not her attacks on your faith and the Christian faiths of others.I used “we’re more godly” as shorthand for “Catholics are more perfected Christians…we have the full set of Sacraments that God intended us to have.” But since you insist that that isn’t what you were saying, I’ll wave goodbye.Buh-bye. Ben in Oakland says: Sandi in EL says: March 13, 2019 at 2:11 pm Backdoor Universalism. This is another one of those signals Francis has been sending. Nothing official, nothing scandalous, no atomicatomic. Just a nice easy breezy “the differences don’t really matter” kind of announcement, like this one.Just a small easy push in a new direction. The religion of Universalism. NoMoreBadTown says: Sandi in EL says: Buttigieg walks fine line in courting religious left August 29, 2019 Sandi in EL says: March 12, 2019 at 12:36 pm Kenyan archbishop denies Catholic Church accepts funds from corrupt politicians March 12, 2019 at 3:19 pm March 14, 2019 at 11:13 am Hey, we both hate the gays, so despite the fact that our theologies contradict each other at just about every particular, we can get all cozy and bro-ish together over that. but nohomo! So you agree with ol’ sandi here, and Catholics are not Christian? Or that some Catholics are not Christian? Or that she or you have the right to declare that people you don’t know are not the right kind of Christian? Or that Mormons are actually a cult? ThomasA says: No. Christianity is not a cult, but thanks Ted Mccartin says: March 13, 2019 at 11:13 am Pete Buttigieg: Religious left is ‘stirring’ August 29, 2019 Ted Mccartin says: St Paul, in Romans 1-2 in particular, makes it plain that homosexuality and lesbian practices are an abomination to the Lord. Jesus loves the sinner, but hates the sin. Jesus is also opposed to same sex marriage. Adam and Eve was the ordained relationship of man and woman in marriage to bring forth children, and be friends, lovers, companions.Same sex and same gender attraction are not a sin as long as you don’t act on those impulses.Everybody wants to be loved. My favourite TV show is Touched By An Angel. Every episode reminds me that we have a Heavenly Father who loves us deeply. Finding joy in Jesus Christ is much more satisfying than anal sex between homosexuals, and the use of vibrators, clitoral wands, and dildos by lesbians. The fact that some heterosexual couples also do these things doesn’t make it okay with God: no unclean thing can enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.Personally, I believe that the unholy and impure sexual practices of heterosexuals, including videotaping their sexual relations to use as “home-made porn” to sexually arouse each other, is much more of an abomination to the Lord than those who experience same sex attraction and feeling lonely or whatever, engage in homosexual/lesbian practices. Though repentance is often hard, I think that the LGBTQ community is more likely to repent and change their lifestyle, than heterosexual couples who engage in the same sexual practises.The Lord says, “I will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all people.” And how many times are we to forgive? 70 times 7. March 12, 2019 at 12:19 pm “We have much in common,” Nelson tweeted afterward. “The differences in doctrine are real_and they’re important_but they’re not nearly as important as the things we have in common.” So-called “ecumenism” makes liars of everyone involved. March 13, 2019 at 11:50 am Associated Press,72 Comments Click here to post a comment Ted Mccartin says: March 14, 2019 at 1:07 pm March 12, 2019 at 5:56 pm Fearan Iarthair says: March 13, 2019 at 12:28 pm Did that sermon make you feel superior and all warm and gooey about yourself? Because that was it’s only purpose.,Muslim groups condemn Fox News host for questioning Rep. Omar’s loyalty to US By: Associated Press Ted Mccartin says: March 11, 2019 at 11:07 am
Share President Donald Trump proposed dramatic cuts in corporate and personal taxes Wednesday in an overhaul his administration asserts will spur national economic growth and bring jobs and prosperity to America’s middle class. But his ambitious plan is alarming lawmakers who worry it will balloon federal deficits.The plan would reduce investment and estate taxes, helping the wealthy. But administration officials said several other tax breaks that help well-to-do taxpayers would be eliminated and the plan would largely help the middle class.The White House has yet to spell out how much of a hole the tax cuts could create in the federal budget, maintaining that the resulting economic growth would eliminate the risk of a soaring government deficit— if not actually cause the red ink to diminish.The outlined changes to the tax code are the most concrete guidance so far on Trump’s vision for spurring job growth and fulfilling his promise to help workers who have been left behind by an increasingly globalized economy.“He understands that there are a lot people who work hard and feel like they’re not getting ahead,” said Gary Cohn, director of the White House National Economic Council. “I would never, ever bet against this president. He will get this done for the American people.”Still, the proposal leaves a series of open questions that could affect its impact on taxpayers and the economy.The administration wants to reduce the number of tax brackets to three from seven, but it has yet to determine the income levels for people who would be put in each bracket. It also has yet to spell out how the plan would stop wealthier Americans from exploiting a lower corporate tax rate to reduce how much they pay. And the White House has downplayed the threat that the tax cuts could cause the deficit to surge, possibly eroding support for the plan among lawmakers in Trump’s own Republican Party.Cohn said Trump and his administration recognize they have to be “good stewards” of the federal budget. But the plan as it currently stands could cause the federal deficit to climb, unless it sparks a massive and lasting wave of growth that most economists say is unlikely.Administration officials intend to hash out additional details with members of the House and Senate in the coming weeks for what would be the first massive rewrite of the U.S. tax code since 1986.“We know this is difficult,” Cohn said. “We know what we’re asking for is a big bite.”As Cohn and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin explained it in an interview, the plan would reduce the number of personal income tax brackets to three from seven: rates of 10 percent, 25 percent and 35 percent. It would double the standard deduction for married couples to $24,000, while keeping deductions for charitable giving and mortgage interest payments. The administration plans to provide tax relief for families with child care expenses, too, although the specifics have yet to be included.On the other hand, the proposal would trim other deductions utilized by wealthier Americans. These would include deductions for state and local tax payments, a change that could alienate support from lawmakers in states such as California and New York with higher state taxes.“It’s not the federal government’s job to be subsidizing the states,” Mnuchin said.The administration has emphasized that the plan is focused on simplifying the tax code and helping middle class Americans. The median U.S. household income is slightly above $50,000 annually.Still, the proposal could reduce the tax burden for the wealthy by substantial amounts, including by eliminating the catch-all alternative minimum tax, which takes an additional bite out of high-income taxpayers.It would also repeal the estate tax and the 3.8 percent tax on investment income from President Barack Obama’s health care law. The proposal has yet to be vetted for its precise impact on top earners, as several details are still being determined.On the corporate side, the top marginal tax rate would fall from 35 percent to 15 percent. Small businesses that account for their owners’ personal incomes would see their top tax rate go from 39.6 percent to the proposed corporate tax rate of 15 percent. Mnuchin said the change for small business owners — a group that under the current definition could include doctors, lawyers and even major real estate companies — would be done in a way that would ensure wealthier Americans could not exploit the change to pay less than intentioned in taxes.
Have you been on the lookout for one of our 3,000+ Trail Riders heading toward Houston? Tell us where you’ve spotted one of the riders! #RODEOHOUSTON pic.twitter.com/vNjbTexfrr— RODEOHOUSTON (@RODEOHOUSTON) February 22, 2018 Listen Tomorrow is the big day! Here’s everything you need know before you go to #RODEOHOUSTON: https://t.co/ZZHl04sgbU pic.twitter.com/ayucDgJy7n— RODEOHOUSTON (@RODEOHOUSTON) February 26, 2018 To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: Share X – / 2About 7,200 people will be working temporary jobs at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo for the next three weeks. The jobs are in concessions, ticket booths, security and guest services to name just a few.Many of the positions are filled by staffing companies. One of them is Houston-based Lane Staffing, which recruits bartenders for the concerts and rodeo events at NRG Stadium.The company’s president, Carla Lane, said the workers come from all walks of life.“We have everybody from students to retirees to those who are looking for additional income as part of their recovery from Harvey,” Lane said. “We have weekend opportunities for those people who have full-time jobs.”Lane said they’ve filled all the bartending jobs but still have some backup positions available. Hey #RODEOHOUSTON fans, the Carnival is all set up and ready for you! Who’s ready to take a spin on La Grande XL? pic.twitter.com/WgbSXqK4xO— RODEOHOUSTON (@RODEOHOUSTON) February 22, 2018 Start planning your visit! Check out what’s new at #RODEOHOUSTON in 2018: https://t.co/2wWiP8QtIt pic.twitter.com/ge2xpMXOc5— RODEOHOUSTON (@RODEOHOUSTON) February 21, 2018 00:00 /00:47
Stormy Daniels’ suit alleges Trump “purposely did not sign the agreement so he could later, if need be, publicly disavow any knowledge of the ‘Hush Agreement.’ “The White House on Monday disputed adult film star Stormy Daniels’ claim that she was threatened to keep quiet over her alleged affair with Donald Trump and said the president continues to deny the relationship.Daniels’ detailed her allegations in a widely watched interview with “60 Minutes” that sparked new legal wrangling between attorneys for the porn star and the president’s team. A lawyer for Michael Cohen, Trump’s personal attorney, demanded that Daniels publicly apologize to his client for suggesting he was involved in her intimidation. Daniels responded by filing a revised federal lawsuit accusing Cohen of defamation.Trump, who frequently takes on his foes in person and on social media, remained uncharacteristically quiet about the matter Monday. He sent a cryptic tweet saying “fake news” has “never been more voluminous or more inaccurate” but it was unclear what exactly he was referring to.Instead, he left the denials to his White House staff. Spokesman Raj Shah declined to say whether the president had watched Daniels’ interview, but said Trump did not believe any of the claims she made.“The president strongly, clearly and has consistently denied these underlying claims, and the only person who’s been inconsistent is the one making the claims,” Shah said.But Daniels was on Trump’s mind this weekend in Palm Beach, Florida, where he had dinner Saturday night with Cohen at his Mar-a-Lago estate.Trump, according to one person who spent time with him, told guests that Daniels now owes him $21 million for breaking her silence, and that every time she talks, she owes him a million more. Trump appeared in good spirits, laughing off the fact that Daniels will be bringing her “Making America Horny Again” strip show to a nearby venue next month, said the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to disclose private conversations.Mar-a-Lago member Chris Ruddy, the CEO of Newsmax, told ABC Sunday that Trump told him “much of the Stormy Daniels stuff” is a “political hoax.”Trump returned to Washington Sunday night, though first lady Melania Trump stayed behind in Florida. A spokeswoman for Mrs. Trump said she is “focused on being a mom and is quite enjoying spring break at Mar-a-Lago while working on future projects.”In her interview, Daniels said she’d slept with Trump once, shortly after Mrs. Trump gave birth to the president’s youngest son. She also said that a man approached her in a Las Vegas parking lot in 2011, when she was with her infant daughter, and threatened her with physical harm if she went public with her story.In a letter late Sunday night, an attorney for Cohen demanded that Daniels publicly apologize to his client.“In truth, Mr. Cohen had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with any such person or incident, and does not even believe that any such person exists, or that such incident ever occurred,” wrote Brent H. Blakely. He said Daniels and her lawyer, Michael Avenatti, should “cease and desist from making any further false and defamatory statements about my client.”Daniels, in the revised lawsuit she filed Monday, alleges Cohen made a false statement that damaged her reputation when he released a statement in February that intimated she was lying.In a round of television interviews Monday morning, Avenatti said he was holding back certain details of the alleged affair, including the contents of a CD or DVD he tweeted a picture of last week, for strategic reasons. “It would make no sense for us to play our hand as to this issue and we’re not going to do it right now,” he said on NBC’s “Today” show.Daniels received a $130,000 payment days before the 2016 presidential election for her silence and has sought to invalidate a nondisclosure agreement she signed. Cohen has said he paid the $130,000 out of his own pocket while asserting Trump never had sex with the porn actress.Previously, Cohen has said neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Daniels and he was not reimbursed for the payment.During Monday’s briefing, Shah said neither the White House nor Trump had violated campaign finance laws that restrict political contributions.“The White House didn’t engage in any wrongdoing,” Shah said of Trump’s behavior, adding that there was “nothing to corroborate” Daniels’ intimidation claims.In the interview, Daniels described a sexual encounter with Trump that began with him talking about himself and showing her an issue of a magazine with his picture on the cover.She said she ordered him to drop his pants and, in a playful manner, “I just gave him a couple swats.” At one point she said he told her: “Wow, you — you are special. You remind me of my daughter.”The interview gave “60 Minutes” its biggest audience in a decade, with slightly more than 22 million viewers tuning in, according to Nielsen Co. estimates.Daniels is not the only woman accusing Trump. Former Playboy model Karen McDougal told Cooper in a CNN interview broadcast Thursday that her affair with Trump began at a bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel in 2006. McDougal said she ended the relationship in 2007 out of guilt concerning Trump’s wife, Melania.McDougal has filed suit in Los Angeles seeking to invalidate a confidentiality agreement with American Media Inc., the company that owns the supermarket tabloid National Enquirer. It paid her $150,000 during the 2016 presidential election.The lawsuit alleges that McDougal was paid for the rights to her story of an affair, but the story never ran. It also alleges that Cohen was secretly involved in her discussions with American Media. Share
Today marks 50 years since Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. Cities across the U.S., including Houston, are holding events in remembrance of Dr. King.What’s the Civil Rights leader’s legacy here in Houston? Houston Matters learns more from three prominent members of Houston’s African-American community:?State Rep. Garnet Coleman of Houston, Tom Jones, who was part of the Prairie View A&M University a cappella concert choir that performed for Dr. King in Memphis just a few weeks before his death, and Rev. Ed Small of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center of Houston. AP Photo/Charles Kelly, FileIn this April 3, 1968 file photo, the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. stands with other civil rights leaders on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tenn., a day before he was assassinated at approximately the same place. From left are Hosea Williams, Jesse Jackson, King, and Ralph Abernathy. Share 00:00 /11:59 Listen X To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:
@SouthwestAir #WN957 diverts and makes emergency landing in CLE due to busted window pic.twitter.com/OJMZ5KTyMS— Chaikel (@ChaikelK) May 2, 2018Passengers on a Southwest Airlines plane first heard a loud pop and then scurried away when they saw a jagged crack in a window that forced the jet to land in Cleveland on Wednesday.Some on board immediately thought back to just two weeks ago when a jet engine blew apart and broke a window, leading to a woman being partially sucked out and killed aboard another Southwest flight.“It made you nervous because something like this just happened,” said passenger Paul Upshaw of Chicago, who was about two seats from the window. “We didn’t know if it was going to crack open.”There were no reports of injuries after Flight 957 heading from Chicago to New Jersey landed safely Wednesday after making an abrupt turn toward Cleveland while over Lake Erie, according to tracking data from FlightAware.com.Passengers on @SouthwestAir #Southwest flight 957 being told to deboard with their belongings and to reboard another aircraft. pic.twitter.com/xkklt1rnpV— Eliott Wolbrom (@ewolbrom) May 2, 2018Some of the plane’s 76 passengers told The Associated Press that the crew quickly checked the window near an emergency exit and handled the situation smoothly.“People just started scattering,” said Upshaw, who added there was no yelling or screaming. “We didn’t panic.”Dallas-based Southwest said that the plane was diverted to examine damage to one of the three layers in the window, but didn’t immediately release details on how it was broken. Photos taken by passengers and posted on social media showed one window with a large, jagged crack.Southwest Airlines spokeswoman Brandy King said the plane never lost cabin pressure — which would have triggered oxygen masks to drop down for passengers — and that the pilots did not declare an emergency before landing.There were no other mechanical problems with the Boeing 737, which was taken out of service, King said. The plane was built in 1998, and King said it has flown about 40,000 “cycles” or flights, “but the damaged window had been previously replaced and continues to receive regular checks as part of our maintenance program.” She said it was inspected last month.Rich Robinson, a sheriff’s deputy from Sandwich, Illinois, said when the window cracked, everybody in that area hit the button for the flight attendant.“She went running back right away, saw it, and everybody cleared out from those couple of rows,” he said.Breaking News: @mickychinn just sent me this picture of (another!)blown out outer-window on his @SouthwestAir Flight 957 from Midway to Newark. Plane just emergency-landed into Cleveland. #Southwest, what is going on? Everyone seems safe and unhurt. Kudos to the pilots and staff! pic.twitter.com/dszdee3NBU— Eliott Wolbrom (@ewolbrom) May 2, 2018The timing of the incident could hardly be worse for Dallas-based Southwest, the nation’s fourth-biggest airline. Airline executives said last week they have seen ticket sales slow since the April 17 engine failure than sent debris flying into a plane, breaking a window and killing a passenger, 43-year-old Jennifer Riordan of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Southwest estimates the drop in sales will cost it between $50 million and $100 million.Robert Mann, an airline consultant and former American Airlines executive, said windows are periodically polished to remove crazing, the formation of tiny cracks from exposure to chemicals and the sun’s rays. He said he couldn’t recall a similar incident caused by crazing and that the pilots were right to make a quick landing.The window on the flight that landed in Philadelphia blew out after being hit by a loose engine part. Riordan died of injuries suffered after she was partially sucked out.After the Philadelphia emergency landing, the Federal Aviation Administration ordered inspections of more jet engines. The National Transportation Safety Board believes one of the blades snapped on the Southwest flight, hurling debris that broke a window.Boeing declined to identify the supplier that manufactured the windows on its 737-700s, the model involved in Wednesday’s incident and last month’s fatal accident. Share
Share Wikimedia commonsThe Harris County Historical Commission will dedicate a new Texas State Historical Marker for the Astrodome this afternoon.The marker makes the building a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark judged by the state to be both historically and architecturally significant.This is in addition to the Astrodome’s status as a State Antiquities Landmark as well as the title of the structure being on the National Register of Historic Places.Speakers on hand this afternoon will include Harris County Judge Ed Emmett and Dene Hofheinz, daughter of Roy Hofheinz who’s most associated with the development of the Astrodome.The #Astrodome will become a Texas Historical Landmark today! What is your favorite memory in the ‘dome? Your answer could appear in an upcoming @HoustonChron story! pic.twitter.com/9XP63CdvZc— Houston Chronicle (@HoustonChron) May 29, 2018
Share Photo: Office of U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan via InstagramThis file photo shows U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin). Ryan says compromise legislation is in the works on immigration, including measures to protect Dreamers.Republican leaders began the problematic task of finding support for an immigration compromise Wednesday, telling lawmakers that President Donald Trump was backing the still-evolving bill. But cracks within the party were on full display and it seemed that pushing the measure through the House next week would be a challenge.“If it was a resolution on apple pie, you’re going to lose some votes, some Republican votes,” said Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla.A day after top Republicans said the House would vote next week on two competing immigration measures, it was widely assumed that a hard-right measure would lose. That bill would give young “Dreamer” immigrants just limited opportunities to remain in the U.S. while imposing tough restrictions on legal immigration and bolstering border security.GOP leaders, negotiating with quarreling moderates and conservatives, were still writing the second bill. Republicans said it would contain a way for Dreamers to qualify for permanent residence and potentially become citizens, while accepting conservatives’ demands to finance Trump’s proposed border wall with Mexico and restrictions on legal immigration.With Republicans battling to keep their House majority in November’s elections, merely staging the immigration votes, win or lose, achieves some political objectives. The plan helped party leaders block unhappy moderates trying to force the House to consider immigration bills considered too liberal by many Republicans, and will let lawmakers assert that they tried addressing the issue.If both bills lose, “at least you know where everyone stands,” said Rep. Warren Davidson, R-Ohio, a member of the hard-right House Freedom Caucus.Democrats seemed likely to solidly oppose both packages. A day after House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Democrats would fight any measure advancing Trump’s immigration policies, the leader of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus said her group’s goal was to have “zero Democratic support” for the GOP bills.Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., said the Republican measures “are going to make it clearer than ever that Dreamers are pawns for a wall. That is going to be a very difficult thing to defend” in the November elections, she said.Addressing DreamersThe bills represent the GOP’s attempt to address Dreamers, young immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children. Trump last year terminated the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, which has temporarily shielded hundreds of thousands of them from deportation. Federal courts have kept the program functioning for now.Even if the compromise measure passed the House, its fate in the Senate was in doubt. Democrats there have enough votes to scuttle any bill.Trump’s backing — especially if he announced it publicly — could help nail down some support. But GOP “no” votes seemed likely, including by some conservatives dubious about granting what they consider amnesty to people in the U.S. illegally.In fact, former Trump White House strategist Steve Bannon told a group of House conservatives Wednesday that “if the House votes for amnesty, then it will deflate the base and they’ll stay home,’” said Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, who invited Bannon. King said Bannon warned that could cost Republicans House control.Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa., a Freedom Caucus member, said it was “a pretty big compromise” for him to support the conservative immigration bill because he doesn’t consider it restrictive enough. He said he’d examine details of the middle-ground legislation leaders were crafting before deciding whether to back it and said Trump’s support didn’t sell him.“I’m glad that the president is finding favor with it, but the president hasn’t seen the legislative text either,” Perry said.Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., the Freedom Caucus chairman, said the compromise bill “has a potential of garnering enough moderates to perhaps offset some of the conservatives’ defections.”Trump’s supportAt a closed-door meeting of House Republicans, Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said he’d spoken to Trump and “the president seemed very supportive” of the compromise, Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y., told reporters. That was echoed by Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., who said, “I know the president, according to Paul today, supports it.”White House senior adviser Stephen Miller told the Republican Study Committee, a large group of House conservatives, that the administration supports the conservative and middle-ground immigration measures, Republicans said.Meanwhile, GOP moderates who’d been trying to force votes on four different immigration measures acknowledged they’d been outmaneuvered by party leaders. The centrists fell two signatures short of 218 — a House majority — needed for a rarely used petition that would have triggered the votes in late June.Top Republicans said the process could have led to a coalition of Democrats and a few Republicans passing bills helping Dreamers without strong enough enforcement provisions — a political fiasco for the GOP. The moderates ended up with 23 GOP signatures and all 193 Democrats.“It’s very obvious” that when some lawmakers stated support for the petition, “they were having several conversations with leadership immediately after that,” said Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Calif., a top moderate.Rep. Carlos Curbelo, R-Fla., another petition leader, said when leaders announced their plans for two votes, some Republicans backing the petition decided to “continue giving these negotiations a chance.”
Share Patients undergoing minimally invasive surgery for cervical cancer are at a higher risk of recurrence and death, two studies from the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston suggest.Results from the studies, published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine, prompted MD Anderson to stop offering minimally invasive radical hysterectomies for cervical cancer patients in March.The first study, a clinical trial started in 2008, compared patients undergoing minimally invasive surgery to those receiving open surgery at 33 cancer centers in multiple countries. Originally designed to enroll 740 patients, the study was stopped in June of 2017 with 631 patients enrolled when it became apparent patients undergoing the minimally invasive procedure were faring worse.The second study retrospectively compared data from the National Cancer Database and appears to confirm the clinical findings.Researchers are conducting follow up studies to examine whether minimally invasive radical trachelectomy, a cervical cancer surgery similar to a hysterectomy meant to preserve a person’s fertility, is also impacted.Dr. Pedro Ramirez, a primary investigator on one of the studies, said the studies were not designed to examine why the minimally invasive procedure was associated with poorer survival. Ramirez theorized that the use of carbon dioxide gas in the surgery may influence the growth of cancer cells and that a tool used in the process may move cancer cells to new locations.Ramirez called the response to the publication “overwhelming,” adding that early results presented at the 2018 Society of Gynecologic Oncology Annual Meeting in April surprised many researchers. He encouraged patients who had or were considering the minimally invasive surgeries to speak with their doctors.
Listen at WEAA Live Stream: http://amber.streamguys.com.4020/live.m3uWe’ll review some of the top news stories of the week directly from the pages of the AFRO with managing editor, Kamau High. Plus, The Mod Squad, Taya Graham and Stephen Janis of The Real News Network report on politics and law enforcement, including the latest developments in the case against the officers connected to the death of Freddie Gray and Gov. Larry Hogan’s decision not to build a new jail in Baltimore.These stories and more coming up this evening on?AFRO’s First Edition with Sean Yoes.