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'Feminism' is Merriam-Webster's 2017 word of the year

Merriam Webster word of the year

Following a year that started with global women's marches and ended with stories of sexual harassment and assault that have brought down powerful men in media, tech, Hollywood and politics, one word has been looked up continually throughout 2017: feminism.

Merriam-Webster announced Tuesday that it's the 2017 word of the year.

“No one word can ever encapsulate all the news, events, or stories of a given year,” Peter Sokolowski, editor at large for Merriam-Webster, said in a statement. “But when we look back at the past twelve months and combine an analysis of words that have been looked up much more frequently than during the previous year along with instances of intense spikes of interest because of news events, we see that one word stands out in both categories."

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Russell Simmons accused of rape by three more women

3 more women accuse Russell SimmonsThree women have accused hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons of rape, The New York Times reported on Wednesday — allegations that the Def Jam Records co-founder vehemently denies.

All of the women went on the record and allowed The Times to use their names.

One accuser, a former executive at the Def Jam music label, claims he raped her in 1995, The Times reported. A second, a performer who Simmons once managed, alleges Simmons raped her in the early 1990s. And a third, a music journalist who briefly dated Simmons, accuses him of raping her in the fall of 1988.

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5 years after Sandy Hook, the victims have not been forgotten

Sandy Hook remembered, 2017It remains among America's most heinous nightmares: the lives of 20 little children -- dancers and swimmers, pianists and painters, budding readers, little sisters and big brothers -- extinguished in a flash of violence inside Sandy Hook Elementary.

Taken with them on that chilly Friday in December -- just 11 days before Christmas -- were six adults felled by the same gunman as they refused to abandon their sacred trust to safeguard the smallest among them.
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Disney buys Fox TV, film studios as part of major $52B deal

Disney buys Fox TV, film studiosThe Walt Disney Company announced Thursday it will acquire entertainment assets from 21st Century Fox in a deal worth more than $52 billion in stock.

As part of the all-stock purchase, Disney will acquire the 20th Century Fox film and television conglomerate and assume nearly $14 billion in Fox debt.

The total value of 21st Century Fox's assets is estimated at $66.1 billion, Disney said.

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Petition Calls On Mormon Church To Stop Letting Leaders Interview Kids About Sex

Petition calls for Mormon elders to end sex talks with children

An online petition is calling on the Mormon church to make changes to a longstanding religious practice that allows leaders to privately question children about sex.

It’s standard practice for congregational leaders in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to hold private interviews with members of their wards, or congregations, who are between the ages of 12 and 18. The annual meetings allow these leaders to offer kids personal counseling and religious instruction.

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San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee dies; 5 key contributions he made

Edwin Lee, SF mayor diesSan Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee, a champion of housing, civil rights and immigration issues, died Tuesday at 65.

Lee and his wife were grocery shopping at a Safeway supermarket just blocks from their home in San Francisco's Glen Park neighborhood when he collapsed from a heart attack about 10:30 p.m. Monday, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Lee was taken to San Francisco General Hospital and died early Tuesday, according to his family.

“It is with profound sadness and terrible grief that we confirm that Mayor Edwin M. Lee passed away," a statement from the mayor's office said. "Family, friends and colleagues were at his side. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Anita, his two daughters, Brianna and Tania, and his family.”

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Mario Batali Steps Away From Restaurant Empire Following Sexual Misconduct Allegations

Mario Batalil accused by 4 womenAbout 10 years ago, at the after-party for a wine auction in New Orleans, a woman in her 20s walked up to Mario Batali to introduce herself. As a chef, she was excited to meet one of the most revered figures in the restaurant industry. When they started talking, she recalls, she realized that he’d been drinking and he became what she characterized as “creepy” — “just giving me this provocative, icky feeling.”

Minutes into their conversation, she recalls, he told her, “Come work for me, I’ll pay you double what you’re making.” Moments later, someone bumped her glass, spilling wine all over her chest and down her scooped-neck shirt. She alleges that Batali began rubbing her breasts with his bare hands while saying something like, “Let me help you with that,” as he groped her chest. “He just went to town, and I was so shocked,” the chef says. “Jaw on the ground, I just stepped back from him in utter disgust and walked away.”

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