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    News Round-Up: Wednesday, February 19, 2014

    Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

    Protests in Ukraine reach a new peak; Confederate flag-bearing license plates cause controversy; bald Barbie dolls cheer cancer patients; soldiers posing around an empty casket spark outrage; and an Arkansas teen is dead after a simple prank goes wrong. Meanwhile, a Gossip Girl star has a secret wedding; a pop music diva might be engaged; one of the hosts of The Voice calls it quits; and Harry Styles makes a “guest appearance” on The Tonight Show. 

    - Veronica + Maura


    After 25 die, Ukrainian protesters dig in: http://rtvote.com/1fgElvD
    25 people died Tuesday after political protests turned violent in Kiev, Ukraine. Today, the protesters are willing to continue to fight against their government. Protests began in November 2013 when Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych declined to trade with the European Union and chose Russia instead. The situation became more grave when the Ukrainian government passed a law prohibiting protesting, driving more people to protest violently. Western leaders are prepared to impose sanctions on the Ukrainian government until the violence ceases.

    Confederate flag to appear on new Ga. car plates: http://rtvote.com/1fyTPrt
    Officials in Georgia have allowed a specialty license plate that includes the Confederate flag, causing conflict between those who view the flag as a symbol of racial oppression and by those who view the flag as a symbol of their Southern heritage. Georgia Governor Nathan Deal said he was surprised by the new plates and said, “I had no information in advance about it.” North Carolina, Alabama, and Mississippi are the only three states that joined the Confederacy that have specialty plates containing the Confederate flag.

    Bald Barbie cheers up cancer patients, families: http://rtvote.com/1fdAOzI
    Valerie Paul’s best friend’s cancer inspired her to make bald Barbie dolls for girls and women fighting cancer. She gained national attention when 13 year-old Talia Joy Castellano, a young girl with terminal cancer who became a viral sensation, received one of the bald Barbie dolls and was on Ellen. So far, she and her business partner Wanda Shultz have handed out over 300 Barbie’s and 75 baby dolls and send them to whoever requests one.

    Soldiers posing around empty casket spark rage: http://rtvote.com/1cZUYrf
    A group photo showing around twelve soldiers making non-serious faces and motions around an empty, flag-draped casket has sparked outrage amongst the public. The Wisconsin National Guard has suspended the woman responsible for posting the photo on Instagram and captioning it with this: “We put the FUN in funeral—your fearless honor guard from various states.” People across the country have found the photo incredibly disrespectful, especially those who lost loved ones in war.

    Prank turns deadly for Arkansas teen: http://rtvote.com/1blH1J0
    15-year-old Adrian Broadway from Little Rock, Arkansas, was shot in the head and killed on Saturday after a prank went horribly wrong. Broadway and a few friends went to a house to pull a “retaliation prank” on another teen who had pulled a prank on them previously. After peppering a vehicle parked at the house with toilet paper, eggs, and mayonnaise, a man came out of the house and opened fire, killing Broadway and injuring another. The shooter, 48-year-old Willie Noble, has been charged with first-degree murder, committing a terroristic act, and aggravated assault. 


    Secret wedding bells for this Gossip Girl star: http://rtvote.com/1ghC8y4

    See Simon Cowell’s newborn: http://rtvote.com/1gFZwH

    Harry Styles on The Tonight Show… kind of: http://rtvote.com/Oa45QP

    CeeLo Green quits The Voice: http://rtvote.com/1c2P2h4

    Is Katy Perry engaged? http://rtvote.com/1gVDmRB


    Veronica Barger
    Bio: Veronica is currently studying communications, law, economics, and government at American University in Washington, DC. Originally from New Jersey, she has held an interest in politics since the 2008 presidential election. Being a newly registered voter, she understands how important it is for young people to register to vote and have their voices heard. She looks to spread that message with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com

    News Round-Up: Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

    Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

    Newtown prepares for more victims’ funerals; shooter Adam Lanza destroyed his hard-drive before his rampage; Hawaii Senator Daniel Inouye has died at 88; Dick’s Sporting Good pulls certain rifles from their stores; four vaccination workers are killed in Pakistan; Iraqi President Jalal Talabani suffers a stroke; Instagram outrages users with its new privacy policy; and The New York Times reports that Wal-Mart bribed Mexican officials in the case of 19 stores. Meanwhile, Suri Cruise is about to have the best Christmas ever; Zac Posen will replace Michael Kors on Project Runway; and Scarlett Johansson’s cellphone hacker gets ten years in prison.



    Despite some news of progress, House Speaker John Boehner said Tuesday that President Obama’s “fiscal cliff” plan is “not there yet.” In turn, the White House sent back Boehner’s “Plan B,” which includes a tax bill. Recently, Boehner said he would increase taxes on those who make over $1,000,000 a year.

    Funeral Services Planned For Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting Victims, http://cour.at/Yhh0mr
    Funeral services will take place Tuesday for two more young victims of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT. Jessica Rekos, 6, and James Mattioli, 6, were two of twenty-six victims killed after Adam Lanza, 20, opened fire at the school before killing himself. The parents of the victims said Jessica “loved horses,” while James was a natural swimmer. Newtown’s other schools resumed classes today. Sandy Hook Elementary will remain closed as it is currently a crime scene.

    The Bribery Aisle: How Wal-Mart Got Its Way in Mexico, http://nyti.ms/RAG0Dr
    The New York Times has done a lengthy investigation into Wal-Mart’s alleged bribes in Mexico. The Times found that Wal-Mart bribed Mexican officials in the case of nineteen stores so that it could build in its ideal locations. In Teotihuacán, Wal-Mart bribed officials to change a zoning map so it could build on a woman’s alfalfa field. The Times first hinted at the bribery in a shorter investigation published in April.

    Adam Lanza Destroyed His Hard Drive Before Attack, http://bit.ly/XCq8wK
    According to investigators, Adam Lanza, 20, destroyed his computer’s hard-drive before killing his mother, 26 victims at Sandy Hook Elementary, and himself. “The kid knew what he was doing,” a source told The Daily Beast. “This was a planned event. There is no question about it.” The FBI is trying to piece the hard-drive together, although it’s possible Lanza may have written over any data.

    Hawaii Sen. Daniel Inouye dies at age 88, http://wapo.st/XB5WeL
    Senator Daniel Inouye from Hawaii died Monday at the age of 88. Inouye was the second longest-serving senator in U.S. history behind Robert Byrd. Elected in 1963, he was a popular senator who lost his arm in World War II and received the Bronze Star Medal of Honor.

    Richard Engel and NBC News team freed from captors in Syria, http://nbcnews.to/R33QpF
    NBC’s Richard Engel and his crew were freed Monday after being kidnapped in Syria for five days. An unknown group captured the crew after they crossed into Syria from Turkey. They were freed at a security point manned by Syrian rebels. NBC says they had not been touch with Engel or his crew during their captivity nor were they contacted about a ransom.

    Dick’s Sporting Goods blasts ‘modern sporting rifles’ off shelves; halts sales nationwide citing ‘unspeakable tragedy’ of Newtown’s Sandy Hook Elementary School deaths, http://nydn.us/UzYekA
    Dick’s Sporting Goods announced Tuesday that it would pull its “modern sporting rifles” from all of its stores due to the shooting in Newtown, CT. The company released a statement saying it was “extremely saddened by the unspeakable tragedy” and would be pulling all guns from its Danbury store, which is near Newtown. Dick’s Sporting Goods has 511 stores and has not specified which rifles in particular it would pull from shelves. Relatedly, Wal-Mart has stopped selling the Bushmaster AR-15 assault rifle, which was found on shooter Adam Lanza.

    Iraqi President Jalal Talabani hospitalized in Baghdad after suffering a stroke, http://nydn.us/WmGmuW
    Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has been hospitalized after suffering a stroke. Sources say he is in stable condition, although the seriousness of the stroke is uncertain. The 79-year-old leader has been unifying amongst Iraq’s splintered groups.

    Instagram says it now has the right to sell your photos, http://bit.ly/Wmo6Sp
    Instagram has changed its privacy policy just three months after Facebook acquired the popular photo-sharing app. The new policy says that Instagram has a right to sell users’ photos to advertisers. Profits from the sales will go only to Instagram. The new terms have caused an uproar amongst the app’s users.


    Scarlett Johansson ‘humiliated, embarrassed’ by celebrity hacker, http://lat.ms/YdUg6Q

    Premiere of Violent Tarantino Film Is Canceled Because of School Massacre, http://nyti.ms/ZehkUq

    Project Runway: Zac Posen In, Michael Kors Out As Judge, http://bit.ly/UA6alV

    Tom Cruise to give Suri $16m house for Christmas, http://bit.ly/UA6eBX

    ‘Gossip Girl’ finale recap: Two weddings, Chuck and Blair’s kid, and the anonymous blogger’s identity revealed,http://bit.ly/V07XPl

    Caitlin Maguire
    Bio: Caitlin is the Marketing & Operations Manager for Rock the Vote
    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com

    News Round-Up: Friday, March 25, 2011

    Friday, March 25th, 2011

    NATO is set to take over the operations in Libya, many North Koreans will be hurt by the ending of UN supplied food to the country, Elizabeth Dole shares the story of women’s voting rights, and explains why we shouldn’t take them for granted, as others argue that the youth vote could be crucial in 2012, internet piracy is down, Romney is hoping to be on his way up, Lindsay Lohen to go by just Lindsay and Elizabeth Taylor is tardy to her own funeral.


    Boehner Facing Tea-Party Pressurehttp://on.wsj.com/ea81Dx

    Tea-party members are furious that Boehner is not working hard to prevent an increase in the debt-limit. Phone calls will be placed to 1000 of Boehners donors, urging them to push him to do more.

    Nato Control in Libya Just Days Awayhttp://bbc.in/hiwWbJ

    In a matter of days NATO will take the reigns of the military operation in Libya. The UK foreign secretary William Hague says there is not split in the international community over the issue.

    North Korea’s food stocks running dry, UN warnshttp://bit.ly/e2vREh

    One quarter of North Korea might face starvation after the government food distribution program ends in May. The UN has been providing food to the country since 2006.

    Dole: Women, Don’t Take Voting Rights for Grantedhttp://usat.ly/ei4Lkv

    Elizabeth Dole writes on why the violence in the Middle East has reminded her of the importance of voting rights, why her mothers generation fought so hard to obtain them, and why we shouldn’t take them for granted.

    Youth Vote: Dems’ Secret Weapon 40 Years in the Making?http://bit.ly/f1AkYD

    It has been 40 years since the passage of the 26th amendment granting 18 year olds the right to vote. The amendment came about after much protest over the idea that young people could be sent to war but could not vote. The population of young voters have been influential in campaigns dating back 4 decades.

    U.S. Internet Piracy is on the Declinehttp://on.mash.to/hX5cQF

    The close of limewire directly affected the amount of legal downloading, making it decrease from 16% of users to 9%.

    Mitt Romney’s Path: Victory by ‘Slog’http://politi.co/fJ49eK

    Mitt Romney is following in the footsteps of the 2008 Democratic presidential primary by organizing like a presidential election. He hopes that his organizational strategy and vast campaign funds will put him on the road to victory.


    Lindsay Lohan to drop last name?: http://aol.it/hJCw39

    Elizabeth Taylor’s funeral delayed 15 minutes…at her request: http://bit.ly/ewEAof

    Blake Lively filming Gossip Girl in sunny LA: http://bit.ly/hNG1tp

    Dolly Parton announces world tour: http://bit.ly/hIZnSD

    John Legend covers Adele: http://bit.ly/gddvSl

    Kristin Andrews
    Bio: Kristin is Rock the Vote's Communications Intern

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com