By Lindsey Bell
Pornography Declared a Public Health Crisis
In 2016 Utah became the first state to claim that pornography was a public health crisis. This year Virginia and South Dakota have done the same.
South Dakota’s resolution states that children are being exposed “at an alarming rate” and also claims that pornography is leading many young men and women away from marriage. Virginia’s measure agrees and also adds that pornography is a leading cause of infidelity and dissatisfaction in marriage. Each of these states recognizes the dangers of pornography. They hope these measures will lay the groundwork for more education and legislation to protect our children, men, and women from the harmful effects of pornography.
Eavesdropping Doll Pulled from Shelves
There’s a doll in Germany that might not be as sweet and innocent as it appears. The doll’s name is Cayla, and she is designed to answer questions about the world at large. But Germany’s Federal Network Agency warned parents recently that the Bluetooth that enables her to answer questions could also allow hackers to use the doll to retrieve personal information.
Jochen Homann, president of the agency, recently told The New York Times that Germany was pulling all of the Cayla dolls off its shelves. He also urged parents to deactivate any dolls in their homes. “Objects that have concealed cameras or microphones that can send information endanger the private sphere,” he said. The United States is also researching the eavesdropping doll.
“Jane Roe” Dies at Age 69
The woman known as “Jane Roe,” of the famous Roe v. Wade court case, passed away at the age of 69 this past February because of a heart ailment. Her real name was Norma McCorvey.
When McCorvey was 22, she tried to find a doctor in her home state of Texas to perform an abortion, but was unable to do so because abortions were illegal during that time except when the mother’s life was in danger.
In 1973, two-and-a-half years after her baby was born and placed for adoption, the Supreme Court heard her case and announced it was illegal to prevent a woman from seeking an abortion.
Though McCorvey was originally pro-choice and for decades sought to strengthen the movement, in 1995 she changed course. She became a born-again Christian and became a pro-life advocate, speaking out at pro-life rallies against abortions.
Scientists Hope to Resurrect the Woolly Mammoth
A team of scientists at Harvard hopes to resurrect the extinct woolly mammoth. They are referring to the project as de-extinction.
Professor George Church told The Guardian that the creature would be a hybrid elephant-mammoth embryo, sometimes referred to as a “mammophant.” Mammoth genes would be spliced into elephant DNA using a gene-editing tool called a Crispr. The resulting animal would share some elephant characteristics but also display characteristics of the extinct woolly mammoth. Like the mammoth, it would likely have small ears, long hair, and cold-adapted blood.
The scientists involved in this project hope the modifications they make on this creature will also help them preserve the endangered Asian elephant. Others, however, have raised ethical concerns about the project.
Melissa Wuske is a freelance editor and writer. She and her husband, Shawn, live and minister in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. Find her work online (melissaannewuske.com).