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Tuesday, Sep 30th

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How a 3-Minute Film Is Making a Long-Term Difference on Climate Change

climate conferenceThis is the story of how a three-minute film watched by over 120 world leaders at the United Nations this morning was produced by a newly empty nested mother of three who had never produced a minute of film before.

It began 26 years ago when my friend, Cindy Horn, and I were pregnant with our first born and concerned about what the scientific community was telling us about the man-made threat to the planet that was soon to welcome our innocent babies.

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Barney Frank And Chris Kluwe Back Campaign To End Discrimination Against Atheists

Chris KluweFormer Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe have signed on to a new campaign to end discrimination against atheists, agnostics and the nonreligious.

Openly Secular, a coalition of more than two dozen secular organizations, seeks to debunk misconceptions about secular people by encouraging nontheists to come forward and raise awareness for the 29 percent of Americans who identify as nonreligious.

In an Openly Secular campaign video posted Friday, Kluwe, who described himself as "cheerfully agnostic and openly secular," urged nonbelievers to advocate for their rights.

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US to destroy land mine arsenal, except on Korean peninsula

land mine treatyThe United States pledged Tuesday to destroy its land mine supply outside of the Korean peninsula, in Washington’s latest move to make good on a decade-old promise to sign up to an international treaty banning the weapons.

“We will diligently undertake to destroy stockpiles of these land mines that are not required for the defense of the Republic of Korea,” said State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki.

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Spain Drops Plan to Ban Most Abortions

spain scraps abortion banSpanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy on Tuesday announced his government would shelve plans for a tough new law on abortions, saying there was not enough support for the legislation.

The draft reform, approved in January, would have allowed abortions only in cases of rape which had been reported to the police or when there was a medically-certified threat to the mother's physical or psychological health.

Current legislation will now be revamped to ensure that 16 and 17-year-olds have to obtain parental permission before having an abortion, meaning that the most controversial aspects of the planned reforms will fall by the wayside.

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Ebola cases could reach between 550,000 and 1.4 million by late January: CDC

Ebola cases Between 550,000 and 1.4 million people in West Africa could be infected with the Ebola virus by January 20, 2015, according to a report issued on Tuesday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The top range of the estimate, 1.4 million, assumes that the number of cases officially cited so far, 5,864 according to the count kept by the World Health Organization, is significantly underreported, and that it is likely that 2.5 times as many cases, or nearly 20,000, have in fact occurred.

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Louisiana judge rules state's gay marriage ban is unconstitutional

Louisiana gay marriage ban unconstitutionalA judge in Louisiana has ruled that the state's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, in part because he says it violates equal protection rights.

KLFY-TV (http://bit.ly/1oe39Gl) reported that Judge Edward Rubin ruled Monday that the ban violated the 14th Amendment and the constitutional requirement that states give "full faith and credit" to each other's laws.

His ruling came in same-sex adoption case of Angela Costanza and her partner, Chasity Brewer.

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Israel military shoots down Syrian aircraft

Syrian MIGThe Israeli military shot down a Syrian fighter jet that infiltrated its airspace over the Golan Heights on Tuesday morning — the first such downing in decades, heightening tensions in the volatile plateau.

The military said a "Syrian aircraft infiltrated into Israeli air space" in the morning hours and that the military "intercepted the aircraft in mid-flight, using the Patriot air defense system."

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Treasury to unveil steps to curb tax inversions

Jacob LewTreasury Secretary Jacob Lew says he'll announce new steps on Monday to prevent American companies from reincorporating overseas to shirk U.S. taxes.

Lew says so-called "tax inversions" are an unfair practice and a glaring loophole in the U.S. tax code.

President Barack Obama has denounced inversions as unpatriotic and has urged Congress to stop them. But with quick action in Congress unlikely, the Treasury Department has been reviewing potential actions the administration could take without Congress. Treasury is also examining ways to reduce the tax benefits for companies that pursue inversions.

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After historic climate march, protesters flood Wall Street

Flood Wall StreetSeveral dozen protesters have been arrested in New York City’s financial district, after they occupied the corner of Wall Street and Broadway to protest what they say is finance capital’s role in perpetuating climate change. The arrests capped an 11-hour march and protest – an event billed as “Flood Wall Street” – in the heart of the world’s financial capital. Organizers claim that the rally included 3,000 people at its peak.

The protest, which took place on Monday, was a smaller companion piece to the People’s Climate March, which had occurred the day before. That march was by far the single largest environmental rally in history, drawing an estimated 310,000 people from all over the world, according to organizers. Police did not confirm or deny the turnout. Whereas that march was designed to appeal to the broadest slice of potential supporters possible, Flood Wall Street is more overtly radical in both its rhetoric and tactics.

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