Home News Roundup News Roundup: June 20, 2014

News Roundup: June 20, 2014


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Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is rampant in Alaska, and a new state-funded study is underway to see if dispensing free pregnancy tests in bars will have any effect in curbing the number of pregnant women drinking in Alaska. Be prepared to have your Outside relative asking about this one. [Alaska Daily News]

Alaska kids in grades 7 through 12 may soon have the option to test out of classes if they can demonstrate mastery of the course. Public comment is being taken. That will surely go well. [ Anchorage Daily News]

UAF horticulturalist Pat Holloway has found success in taking advantage of Alaska’s unique growing season to provide peonies in July, a prime time for this popular wedding bloom. [The Atlantic]

By this point, surely you’ve heard about the Funny River 5 wolf pups rescued from the fire that devastated so much of the Kenai Peninsula. The good news is these pups are being cared for at the Alaska Zoo in Anchorage before they eventually make their way to Minnesota. Here are some beautiful pictures by photographer John Gomes. [John Gomes Photography]

U.S. Senate candidate Joe Miller continues to attract media attention, this time through the release of Matt Johnson’s new book The Joe Miller Story — Malicious Intent — Inside the Establishment’s War on the Tea Party. Johnson claims the true reason Miller lost his 2010 senate bid running against incumbent Lisa Murkowski and democratic nominee Scott McAdams was due to illegal aliens voting Murkowski to victory. Huh. Craig Medred has some thoughts on the subject. [Anchorage Daily News]

In Juneau, a baseball game was interrupted by a bear. Well, it paused for awhile to watch the bear, and then the game continued. [ESPN]

And in unsurprising-but-still-disappointing news, the state of Alaska will be defending its constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. Stay classy, guys. [My San Antonio]


A group (white)  of county commissioners in Dallas County are upset after finding out that they, in fact, unanimously voted in favor of a Juneteenth resolution including a provision calling for monetary and substantial reparations for the suffering of black Americans, despite having the resolution READ OUT LOUD to them before the vote. The resolution was introduced by John Wiley Price (the only black commissioner in Dallas County). Some commissioners are now back-tracking as fast as they can. [Gawker]

Hate group National Organization for Marriage thought today would be a fine day to storm the U.S. Capitol in a “March for Marriage” to let people know that they’re the real victims in the whole same-sex marriage debate. Despite predictions of over 5,000 attendees, the actual count was closer to 2,000. Perhaps the others got distracted by a Duck Dynasty marathon? [Gawker]

Wondering what’s going on in Iraq right now, and how the situation has gone from bad to worse so quickly? Do yourself a favor and check out this handy guide from Moyers & Company. [Moyers & Company]

This Really Happened

Where do you fall on the Oxford Comma debate? FiveThirtyEight and SurveyMonkey Audience ran a poll and it turns out people are split. This may not seem like a big deal, but it will be when you turn in a report to your boss and discover you’re on opposing sides of the issue. [FiveThirtyEight]

You may not have realized an attack was going on this week, unless you use the RSS application Feedly. Feedly users were very well aware when service went down as Feedly endured three Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks over three days, essentially trying to demand ransom in return for calling off the attack. But Feedly stood strong and prevailed, and now we can go back to skimming our newsfeeds. [Forbes]

Did you know that the United Nations once condemned Superman? No, really, it happened in real life. Some people were convinced that comic books were destroying the minds of children, and Superman was to blame. Good thing they got that whole thing figured out before video games came alo…oh, yeah. [io9]

The shrinking of the Arctic ice sheet has prompted a drastic change in the National Geographic Atlas. Geographer Juan José Valdés calls it “the biggest visible change other than the breakup of the U.S.S.R.” So there’s that. [National Geographic]

Playing guitar is pretty cool. Playing a guitar designed as Han Solo frozen in carbonite from “Star Wars: Episode V” is way cooler. [Huffington Post]