Yesterday on WBEZ's "Worldview" program - which is essential listening for Chicagoans interested in human rights - Alexandra Solomon guest hosted for Jerome McDonnell who is on what I am certain is a very well deserved vacation. She spoke with Radhika Parameswaran, an Indiana University professor who specializes in gender & society in India. She was there to respond to the growing protests among Indian women over the brutal rape and murder of an Indian medical student and the murder of her boyfriend while on what they believed was a public bus. While speaking about the persistent class differences in Indian society, Parameswaran articulated the entire reason why this journal is titled, "Third Coast | Third World" (starts about 5m50s):
"What you have now is an India where within cities you have first worlds and third worlds. We often talk of the U.S. being the first world, you know, and India or Sudan or something being the third world. Well, that model has fallen apart. You have first worlds and third worlds within the same cities - in a lot of these, what I call 'global cities'. So here you have Dehli. You have gated communities, big skyscraper buildings, and a lot of prosperity for some and not prosperity for others."
It's every bit as true in Chicago as it is in Dehli and the inequality needs to be addressed.
News & Notes
Springfield, IL - Ray Long and Rick Pearson report for the Trib that the IL assembly failed to push through an assault weapon ban. Passage of a bill legalizing same-sex marriage is also in doubt.
Syria - The UN commission on human rights revised figures of the death toll in Syria from 40,000 to upwards of 60,000 after evaluating new data.
Saudi Arabia - AlterNet & Salon published a retraction after mistakenly posting a story about a Saudi cleric calling for rebel fighters in Syria to rape Syrian women. They weren't the only ones who jumped the gun on this story, but their retraction & thoughts on internet age tabloidism is a worthwhile read.
Massachusetts -Recently retired House rep, Barney Frank announced he would like to be named the replacement Senator from MA if John Kerry is confirmed as Secretary of State as expected.
Washington, DC - 68 days after Hurricane Sandy, Congress finally agreed to appropriate relief aid.
Evanston, IL - Finally, last week the Tribune ran a piece about a non-profit venture that seeks to match donors with people who need small amounts of money to change their situations. It's called Benevolent, and it's a brilliant idea. I wish founder Megan Kashner all the best with her efforts.
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