Friday, August 04, 2017

Ideas, Actions, and Inspiration for a Better Tomorrow - August 4 Edition

Entertainment, Comedy

"Comedy legend Carol Burnett, who came close to a primetime return with the ABC comedy pilot Household Name this past season, is headed to Netflix. The internet network has given a 12-episode series order to A Little Help with Carol Burnettan original unscripted comedy starring Burnett and a panel of straight-talking 4-8-year-olds as they demonstrate how different generations solve life’s biggest dilemmas.

In each half-hour episode, the kids will face real-life issues brought before them by both celebrities and everyday people and will dish back guidance in front of a live studio audience. The series is slated for a 2018 premiere. (You can watch a teaser by clicking on the title.)

“Someone once asked me how old I am inside,” said Burnett. “I thought about it, and came up with, ‘I’m about eight.’ So it’s going to be a lot of fun playing with kids my age.”"

 Sexuality, Education, Feminism

"The students Yao talks to through Rodoko are mainly from her hometown of Beijing, but ignorance about sexual matters is widespread throughout the country. Chao remembers a school friend from Jinan in Shandong province who, when she was 17, kissed her boyfriend at the time and was worried that she would get pregnant.

Given the state of sex education in China, it’s hardly surprising that such misconceptions exist. The national curriculum only requires that students are taught basic anatomy, and even then these lessons are often sidelined to make space for more exam-focused studies. What exists of sex education is normally delivered to early teenage students, before more complicated questions about sex might arise, and even then the classes can be loaded with moralizing. A textbook titled Senior Middle School Student Scientific Sex Education, which has been used around China since 2004, describes girls who have premarital sex as “degenerates.” This claim went viral on Chinese social media last year. According to Yao, “There’s no sex education at school.” When I ask if she was taught how to avoid pregnancy, the answer is a firm “no.”"

Peacekeeping, Security, Solutions

"ALL OVER THE world, women are defying the odds to make meaningful contributions as peacebuilders and peacekeepers. We asked four of these pioneers about the greatest challenges they face.

Kristin Lund was the first female force commander for the United Nations as head of the peacekeeping force in Cyprus. She is a serving general in the Norwegian army.
She says:

“The biggest challenge is that women and civil society actors are excluded from pre-negotiation talks and agreements, which are also highly secret. As a result, women and civil society are unable to introduce their needs and concerns during pre-negotiations when the agenda for the formal talks and the root cause are set. Most peace processes focus on ending political violence but fail to acknowledge the different forms of violence experienced by women and minorities, like Indigenous peoples, leaving these forms of violence in place and failing to address the security concerns of half of the population.

“First, leaders must take into consideration that women must be on the mediation/negotiation team from the start. Second, they must have the authority to bring issues to the table."

Public Health, Addiction

"Demand for addiction treatment is high in Baltimore, as it is in many cities and communities across the country. Towson believes the reason is the spread of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid far more powerful than heroin.

"Nowadays, everybody's scared. That fentanyl — that's death," she said. "I thank God I chose when I did — or He appointed me to be chosen — to change my mind when I did, because I know I wouldn't have made it. ... Thank God for another day."

Towson had her own near-death experience with fentanyl more than a year and a half ago, during a blizzard that dropped more than 2 feet of snow on Baltimore. She was getting high with a group of people, she told us. She and another woman were given the task of testing a new batch of dope. She wouldn't know until later that it was laced with fentanyl. It would be her first and last taste of the drug."

Inspiration, Dreams, Never Too Old

This will make you smile and inspire you: "Mary Ho, 81, plays a mean electric guitar.The feisty grandmother is now gearing up for the performance of a lifetime - playing for thousands at Singapore's annual National Day Parade in August."

She is wonderful, right? I know you are smiling. We're never too old to learn something new. Enjoy your weekend!

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