Minor Marijuana Offenses No Longer Prosecuted in Chicago

In most states, excluding the states where possession is legal, being caught with small amounts of marijuana can land you in prison with a hefty fine to pay once you’re out. This is no longer the case in Chicago. Those caught with misdemeanor levels of weed in Chicago will no longer be prosecuted by the state.

According to this article, offenders caught with what was formerly a felony amount of pot will not be prosecuted in criminal court and will instead be redirected to a separate prosecution court designed to aid these people in getting the help they need. Misdemeanor possession will no longer be prosecuted at all. The attorney’s office is expected to announce these changes on April 20th. It is expected that the announcement will also address the way heavier drugs are handled such as heroin, cocaine, and ecstasy.

Many have found the date of the announcement amusing as the press conference will be held on 4/20, or National Weed Day. When asked for comment, the office said that this scheduling was “purely coincidence” and wasn’t planned in advance. Jason can only believe them for now.

Great-Grandson Finds Ring Lost For 55 Years

A young boy found his great grandmother’s long lost wedding right after it had gone missing in their backyard 55 years ago. This spring break, Ruth Jones had her grandchildren and 9 year old great grandson Noah come to her house. Noah had gotten a metal detector this past winter for Christmas and when he took his new toy outside it told him that the ring was about four to six inches below the Earth.

According to an article found on reddit and written by TimesNews.net, Jones said that she had heard the ring fall off her finger over five decades ago while she was hanging up her clean clothes on the laundry line outside her home. She had been very upset about the loss, however she had said that her husband who had passed away about 10 years ago was even more upset that she had long lost such a very many years ago. She was both really happy to get this family treasure back and pleased to see how excited her great grandson was about finding it. After all, it doesn’t get much cooler than finding something like that from your own history that has been missing for quite a lot of time.

This will be a special moment for both Noah and Ruth as they now will have one of the coolest stories to tell at their family get togethers and reunions. Brian could only wish about having something similar to share.

Sounds kinda Fishy

Spending 66 days at sea after being capsized more than once and being found alive in good shape is something that seems pretty far fetched. But, according to rescuers,that is how they found Louis Jordan.

He set out in January, from South Carolina, headed for open water to sail and fish, leaving no itinerary behind.
The story he tells about his 66 day adventure sounds unbelievable and is being called miraculous. He was capsized and tossed around, being held by “Angel” (his sailboat).
During his battle with the unrelenting waves, the boats mast was torn and his shoulder was broken. He had enough food and water for a while but he was forced into survival mode when they ran out. He used a bucket to catch rainwater and found that his clothing being swished around in the water caught the attention of curious fish swimming by.
Through it all, he didn’t lose hope but he did lose 90 pounds.
Jordan claims that the sustaining force behind his survival was reading his bible from cover to cover stated therealdeal.com.
After two months, a German Container Ship (Houston Express) must have had him wiping his eyes, wondering if he was hallucinating, as it approached him.
They found him floating 200 miles from the North Carolina coast. He was taken aboard the ship and then airlifted to land by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Housing Complex for Mentally Ill Homeless Opens in Vancouver

The homeless in Vancouver now have a permanent place to stay if they are suffering from mental illnesses or struggling with addiction. The Kettle Society have opened a new housing complex called Taylor Manor to help those in need. The complex was once a psychiatric facility and then a home for seniors. The complex contains 56 studio-like apartments with a communal kitchen. According to the story on CBC News, The Kettle Society were able to open this facility thanks to a large donation. An anonymous donation came in of #30 million which will keep the facility running for the next 30 years.

To find residents for the 56-person complex, The Kettle Society visited places such as parks and shelters to take applications from those interested in becoming a resident at Taylor Manor. They received 200 applications in just 10 days from those in need. The Kettle Society went through each application and chose those who they felt needed their help the most. It is projected that most residents will need to spend a few years at Taylor Manor before they are able to stand on their own feet.

The state of Utah had a similar program to help the homeless in their area stated Jason Halpern. Since 2005 their homeless population has been reduced by 72% and many less calls were placed to social and emergency services since that time.

Canadian Regulators Cap Basic Cable Fees

The Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) enacted new regulations that would cap basic cable rates to $25 CDN (About $20 USD). It also set regulations to end the practice of selling large bundles of unwanted channels to consumers. Instead, customers can pick and choose which channels they want to add or purchase smaller, themed bundles instead.

CrunchBase suggests that the basic cable packages will be required to carry local programming and some may carry U.S. channels in border areas where they are normally received. Cable companies in Canada will have to make changes to their offerings by the end of the year. Existing customers who are satisfied with their current packages will not have to switch.

This move was in response to concerns about the rising cost of cable as well as a change in how people are consuming media. Many people are paying for bundles that contain a large number of less popular channels that they don’t want. Others have changed their television viewing to online channels and portals.

CRTC chairman, Jean-Pierre Blais, says that this change may affect some jobs as the less popular channels may go off the air due to financial in-feasibility. However, he says that the change is good for consumer freedom.

Canadian Reggae Band Magic Popular in Jamaica

Rolling Stone Magazine has an article on their website about how Canadian reggae band Magic is popular in Jamaica. Magic is best known for last summer’s smash singles “Rude” and “Let Your Hair Down”. They play reggae music tinged with pop.
Gianfrancesco Genoso says that the band is ecstatic that they are well received in the homeland of Reggae especially since hardcore reggae critics in the United States frequently dismiss the band as reggae wannabes. Magic has even performed at Jamaican reggae festivals alongside local acts and done studio collaborations with Jamaican reggae stars.

I like that Jamaica has accepted this foreign act. It would be easy for music lovers in Jamaica to criticize any foreign band playing reggae music as being inauthentic, yet here they are open-minded and tolerant. It’s good that they aren’t too protective of reggae.

In fact, I believe it’s a good thing when any type of culture – music, food, drama – transcends the group of people who created it and becomes a universal thing. Some might say it’s bad that a restaurant selling great Mexican food isn’t run by Latinos, for example, but I think that kind of thing is fine. Any culture should be free to expand on the creations of another. Ultimately, it brings everyone closer.

City In Ontario Closes Road To Protect Endangered Salamanders

Every year, the City of Kitchener in Ontario closes one of its roads to protect a colony of endangered salamanders. The Jefferson’s salamanders live in forests on both sides of the road, but only one side produces the vernal ponds the salamanders need for laying their eggs. So every spring, they have to cross the road to get to a vernal pond, mate and lay eggs. But the salamanders are small and slow and are therefore easy prey for cars and trucks.

According to Flavio Maluf, Jefferson’s salamander populations are declining throughout Ontario, so the species is protected under the province’s Endangered Species Act. Several years ago, the citizens of Kitchener decided to do their part to protect the salamanders by closing Stauffer Drive during the salamanders’ mating season so they can safely cross it. The road will be reopened on May 1.

The Jefferson salamander is found only in southern Ontario and parts of the northeastern United States. It was declared an endangered species in Ontario in 2011, and the main threats to it are habitat degradation and loss. These animals need unpolluted ponds that do not dry up in the summer and a healthy forest with an undisturbed floor. Human activities like urban development and wetlands draining have hurt their populations.

Contributing our Wealth of Knowledge: Wikipedia

Almost everyone turns to Wikipedia when the have a topic to research, need to know about a person or place, or simply have a question. All of the content on Wikipedia is written by people just like ourselves, who choose to submit content for a variety of reasons. They happen to know a lot about the topic, or just want to make a contribution.
Many users find Wikipedia to be extremely informative. However, you make come across some pages that have outdated information or incorrect facts. Luckily, it is easy to make an edit when you come across information that is less than accurate. Register with a username and password, and you can submit updates and corrections for any Wikipedia page, and provide corrected, updated information for Wikipedia users. You can also provide additional information about a topic that is already correct, but could use a little more content.
Information changes pretty quickly on Wikipedia, as news reports come out on a daily basis. Users are constantly updating pages about celebrities and public figures. GetYourWiki, a US company, even offers a page management service to monitor and update any page that belongs to you.
In order to effectively update a Wikipedia page and submit content, make sure you are submitting information that is strictly factual. The editors won’t accept opinions, criticisms, or even praises for a topic. Also, you need to make sure that you are properly citing your sources. Information that is not deemed reliable will be deleted from the site.

 

If you come across spam on Wikipedia, it can be easily edited by those with a username and password. You can log in and delete or change the information. Always check with the content policies first, and remember, you can always report spam to Wikipedia: WikiProject Spam. You can also turn to Wikipedia Tutorial, a guide that provides information on editing and formatting. Everyone is an expert on something, it’s great to know that we have a site like Wikipedia in which to share our wealth of knowledge.

Praying in Town

There is the possibility of peaceful protests in Ferguson if the people in the city would take a step back and realize what has taken place in the community. There was a prayer vigil in Ferguson only one night after a horrible accident took place in the city said community member Paul Mathieson. This act shows that the people who live in the city are capable of coming together and dealing with the grief that they have experienced. Although this has been a time of sorrow, the people need to rely on each other instead of closing down businesses and committing acts that aren’t showing anything except hate. This vigil took place in the middle of town for everyone to see. They held candles, prayed and talked about putting the town back together. It seems like the first step in moving forward in hopes that the town can get back on its feet.

Alabama Supreme court issues a stop to same-sex marriage

In a rather unsurprising turn of events, the Alabama Supreme Court has issued a halt to same-sex marriages from being conducted within the state. This follows a few weeks after a U.S District Court Judge in Mobile, Al, ordered a probate judge to begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses.

The Alabama Supreme Courts reasoning for this latest decree is, “As it has done for approximately two centuries, Alabama law allows for ‘marriage’ between only one man and one woman,” followed up by this rather bold declaration, “Alabama probate judges have a ministerial duty not to issue any marriage license contrary to this law. Nothing in the United States Constitution alters or overrides this duty.” This action will be the strongest attempt, so far, at negating the advancement of same-sex marriage as a social norm in society. The Court states that, “This notion has broad public appeal and is, perhaps, the mantra most repeated in public discussions of this matter.” So, even though it has the approval of the public, the court still won’t allow it? This kind of biased decision making only serves to hurt the country and its image.

As is usual with cultural advancement of any kind, the new and progressive ideas only form at the bottom among the public, while the government officials state disjointed reasoning for keeping things the same as it has been seen on LinkedIn. Hopefully, the real Supreme Court will make a decisive move to allow same-sex marriage to continue in Alabama.