1.) Indiana Governor backs off anti-LGBT legislation
After national uproar over a recent religious freedom law, Indiana governor Mike Pence announced this morning that he is requesting new legislature that clarifies the law. Pence rejected claims that the purpose of the law was to allow businesses to refuse service to LGBT customers. He is requesting new legislature that will clarify this part of the law.
The decision came after NASCAR, the NCAA, NBA and WNBA publicly denounced the law. Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay also spoke out against the law, although the NFL did not weigh in. Rock band Wilco cancelled their concert in Indiana, and the governors of Connecticut and Washington state officially banned travel to Indiana to protest the law.
Although the law has been praised by many Republicans as a strong defense of religious freedoms, its original text would allow businesses to turn away LGBT customers on the grounds of religious freedom.
This type of law is echoed in many states throughout the country. In fact, a majority of states in the U.S. have standing or pending legislation that is extremely similar to the Indiana law — including Connecticut, one of two states boycotting Indiana.
2.) Pilot was deemed unfit to fly
After the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525, serious investigations have revealed that the co-pilot — who locked the pilot out of the cockpit, crashed the plane and killed all 150 of the passengers — reported suicidal thoughts at one time in his training. Although he reported no physical illnesses, the emerging medical reports of Andreas Lubitz show that depression and suicidal tendencies could stand as the motive for the crash.
Previous to the crash, Lubitz was deemed to be psychosomatic, which means that his physical condition was aggravated by stress levels. He was also deemed unfit for flying due to vision problems which were exacerbated by stress, but did not report this to airline officials, and continued flying. This tragedy is now raising questions about how airlines should regulate and screen pilots for mental illnesses.
3.) New “Daily Show” host raises concerns
“The Daily Show” on Comedy Central has announced its new host. Trevor Noah, a South African comedian, will replace former host John Stewart later on this year. Noah, 31, has only appeared on “The Daily Show” three times as an on-air contributor prior to the announcement. Stewart, after a 16-year run on the show, revealed his impending departure back in February.
In an interview, Michele Ganeless, president of Comedy Central, said, “We talked to women. We talked to men. We found in Trevor the best person for the job.” Already, Noah is raising concerns for multiple sexist and anti-Semitic statements he has made on Twitter.
4.) Disney announces live-action adaptation of “Mulan”
Along with a slew of other classic animated films, Disney is now planning to adapt “Mulan” into an updated, live-action film. Written by Elizabeth Martin and Lauren Hynek, the film will be based on both the original “Mulan” and the Chinese legend of Hua Mulan. “Mulan” is yet another live-action retelling Disney is developing, and will follow 2010’s “Alice in Wonderland,” last year’s “Maleficent” and this year’s “Cinderella.” From this year onward, remakes of “The Jungle Book,” “Dumbo,” “Beauty and the Beast” and the sequel to “Alice in Wonderland.”
5.) East takes part in testing
Throughout this week, East students will take part in standardized testing in the library. The KELPA test was administered this morning, and East juniors will take part in the state social studies assessment testing throughout this week. For this purpose, the library will not be accessible to schools in order to provide a quiet testing environment.