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234 Female Students Went Missing in Nigeria, and the Media Has Barely Covered It

catbountry:

thepoliticalfreakshow:

The news: South Korea’s tragic ferry disaster has gripped international headlines for the past week as the world watched with bated breath to find out what happened. Though 159 bodies have been discovered by divers, another 143 still remain missing — and families and loved ones are hoping against hope that they are somehow still alive.

But on the other side of the world, 234 schoolgirls in Nigeria, ages 16 to 18, wereabducted two days before the South Korean incident. Armed men broke into a school in the northeastern city of Chibok, shot the guards and took the girls away while they were taking a physics exam. The attack has been linked to Boko Haram, a jihadist affiliate of al-Qaida.

So why haven’t we heard about it? Simply put, because the world has very different views on South Korea and Nigeria. One is among the richest countries in the world and a powerful Western ally with a high quality of life and strong international presence. The other is in Africa, where, you know, these things happen all the time — or so we’re led to believe.

"In Nigeria, the mass abduction of schoolgirls isn’t shocking," CNN claims. “No one knows where the missing girls are. And even more surprising, no one’s particularly shocked.”

Image Credit: Al-Jazeera

But that’s not true. Boko Haram, which is Hausa for “Western education is sinful,” is against the education of girls. Girls have been abducted in the past to serve as cooks or sex slaves — but a kidnapping of this size is unprecedented.

And despite what CNN might think, people aren’t simply giving up on the girls. Desperate family members and town residents have gone on the search, combing the Sambisa Forest, a known terrorist hangout, on motorcycles. The search parties have so far had some success, uncovering traces of the girls.

The government is not helping. According to the school, about 43 girls have already escaped their captors — no thanks to the authorities. ”None of these girls were rescued by the military; they managed to escape on their own from their abductors,” said schoolmaster Asabe Kwambura.

As recently as Monday, education authorities claimed that only 85 girls have gone missing, despite the families’ insistence that 234 were taken. The military even claimed at one point that they rescued all but eight girls — which they immediately retracted the following day.

Nigerian security officials insist they are in ”hot pursuit” of the abductors, but they’ve yet to find a single girl. ”It’s alarming that more than a week after these girls were abducted, there are not any concrete steps to get them back,” said Human Rights Watch’s Nigeria researcher Mausi Segun.

It’s a dangerous environment. Boko Haram has been on a rampage in recent months and on the same day as the girls’ abduction, the group claimed responsibility for a bombing in Abuja that killed 75. The terrorist group, which wants to establish an extremist Islamist state in northeastern Nigeria, has alreadykilled over 1,500 people this year.

But that does not mean we should look the other way when a tragedy like this takes place.

"The South Korean story has unfolded on camera, in a first-world country with every facility for news reporting. In contrast, the young Nigerians have vanished into the darkness of a dangerous world," Ann Perkins writes in the Guardian. "Nigeria is complex and messy and unfamiliar. It is easy to feel that what happens there is not real in the way that what happens on camera in South Korea is real."

The ugly truth is that when young lives are similarly at stake, we are more shocked when the danger takes place in a country that is considered stable and affluent — and less so in a country where violent insurgents are trying to take over.

But the media has a responsibility to report the truth rather than ignoring a story because it sounds familiar. It’s easy to become desensitized to stories coming out of a conflict-ridden region, but that doesn’t mean these human lives are worth any less.

Source: Eileen Shim for Policy Mic

Holy shit.

54,187 notes

ellensama:

burntcandycorn:

littlebluecaboose:

cosmictuesdays:

frenchie-fries:

vergess:

boltonsrepairshop:

PSA - PLEASE READ AND SPREAD HE WORD!!!

IF YOU SEE THIS PLANT AT ALL, DO NOT TOUCH IT!!!

Giant hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum) is an invasive herb in the carrot family which was originally brought to North America from Asia and has since become established in the New England, Mid-Atlantic, and Northwest regions of the United States. Giant hogweed grows along streams and rivers and in fields, forests, yards and roadsides, and a giant hogweed plant can reach 14 feet or more in height with compound leaves up to 5 feet in width.

Giant Hogweed sap contains toxic chemicals known as Furanocoumarins. When these chemicals come into contact with the skin and are exposed to sunlight, they cause a condition called Phytophotodermatitis, a reddening of the skin often followed by severe blistering and burns. These injuries can last for several months, and even after they have subsided the affected areas of skin can remain sensitive to light for years. Furanocoumarins are also carcinogenic and teratogenic, meaning they can cause cancer and birth defects. The sap can also cause temporary (or even permanent) blindness if introduced into the eyes.

If someone comes into physical contact with Giant Hogweed, the following steps should be taken:
  • Wash the affected area thoroughly with soap and COLD water as soon as possible.
  • Keep the exposed area away from sunlight for 48 hours.
  • If Hogweed sap gets into the eyes, rinse them with water and wear sunglasses.
  • See a doctor if any sign of reaction sets in.
If a reaction occurs, the early application of topical steroids may lessen the severity of the reaction and ease the discomfort. The affected area of skin may remain sensitive to sunlight for a few years, so applying sun block and keeping the affected area shielded from the sun whenever possible are sensible precautions
PLEASE, DO NOT JUST READ AND SCROLL! THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT AND POTENTIALLY LIFE-SAVING INFORMATION!!!

Extra note: if you live in Oregon, New Jersey, Michigan or New York and see one of these, call your state’s department of agriculture to report it, and trained professionals will come kill it before it can produce seeds and spread.

Frankly, if you see one in general, probably call your DOA and see if there’s a program in place.

Do not burn it, because the smoke will give you the same reaction.

If for some ungodly reason there isn’t a professional who can handle it for you (and please, please use a professional), the DOA of New York has [this guide] for how to deal with it yourself.

OH MY FUCK I HAVE THESE IN MY BACKYARD.

Fucking invasives. Signal boost.

Re-reblogging because I checked Snopes, and not only is this shit true, but the text on this is pretty much the same as it is there! Stay safe, kiddos.

According to the US Department of Agriculture, these are currently the states and provinces in North America where Giant Hogweed is present. Even if your state/province is “clear” that doesn’t mean that it is not there. If you see Giant Hogweed in your yard or anywhere please call your DOA! This stuff is mad deadly!

[Image Source]

Also here is a human for size reference. Since they are huge it should be easy enough to see and spot when fully grown.

image

The burns can also be very bad, far worse than any poison ivy. Just Google ‘Giant Hogweed Burns’ and you’ll see. It can cause bad blistering, red painful rashes, and more. Please be careful of this plant!

(via paellapals)

6,084 notes

unexplained-events:

Hobo Nickels from the 1930s

Hobo Nickels are a form of sculptural art. The nickel was favored due to its size, thickness and softness. Even though the medium was popular amongst hobos due to its cheapness, it is a generic term as it was used by many different kinds of people.

(via paellapals)