The Common Good

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Creflo Dollar: Police Release Daughter's 911 Tapes Reporting Assault by Father

According to CNN:

ATLANTA, Ga. – With a calm voice and collected manner about her, a 15-year-old girl called Fayette County 911 to report that her father assaulted her. The call led police to the suburban Atlanta home of megachurch pastor Creflo Dollar and ultimately resulted in a night behind bars on Friday.

The audio from the phone call was released Tuesday.

“I just got into an altercation with my father. He punched me and threatened to choke me,” the girl told a 911 dispatcher. “Um, this is not the first time that this has happened. I feel threatened by being in this house. Um… I don’t know, I don’t know what can be done. But I’m scared, I’m shaking.“

Dollar publicly denied punching or choking his teenage daughter during Sunday service at World Changers International Church, but in the police report, he admitted emotions ran high very early Friday morning and he attempted to “restrain” his daughter when she became “disrespectful.”

In the 911 tapes, the teen explained to the dispatcher that her father attacked her because of grades and a dispute about a party that she wanted to attend.

Read more HERE.

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Iran Releases Christian Pastor, Two Others Remain Imprisoned

BosNewsLife.com reports:

TEHRAN, IRAN — Iran has released Pastor Mehdi “Petros” Foroutan who served about one year in prison following a police crackdown on his and other house churches,  a spokesman told BosNewsLife late Tuesday.

Jason DeMars, who helped the 27-year-old pastor with advocacy, explained that Forouton was released on June 10. He added that the pastor "In total served about one year in prison for 'crimes against national security' because of his Christian faith."

At least two other Christian clergymen — Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani and another Christian leader, Behnam Irani — remain imprisoned. Nadarkhani faces the death penalty for refusing to abandon his Christian  faith and return to Islam. He remains in Lakan Prison in the city of Rasht where he is still awaiting an official response from the local court about his future, DeMars said. Irani is held in Ghezal Hezar prison in Karaj city, despite his poor health.  Prison officials reportedly refuse to allow him to visit a doctor.

Read more HERE.

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Sister Simone Campbell Schools Colbert on the Social Gospel

"America's nuns clearly support the gay agenda, but one nun really has the Vatican's chasubles in a bunch."

 

"NETWORK's Executive Director Sister Simone Campbell responds to the Vatican's "radical feminist" charges, and Stephen learns how to get into heaven."

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DRONE WATCH: Why Drone Attacks are Illegal

Bill Quigley, a human rights lawyer and professor at Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, asks:

"US civilian and military employees regularly target and fire lethal unmanned drone guided missiles at people across the world. Thousands of people have been assassinated. Hundreds of those killed were civilians. Some of those killed were rescuers and mourners. These killings would be criminal acts if they occurred inside the US. Does it make legal sense that these killings would be legal outside the US?"

He says no, and offers five reasons why these drone assassinations are illegal.  

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Deadly Earthquake Hits Afghanistan

From The Associated Press:

"As many as 100 people are feared dead in an earthquake and landslide that buried more than 20 houses in northern Afghanistan on Monday, officials said.

Rescuers have so far pulled two women's bodies from the rubble of the landslide in Baghlan province, said provincial Gov. Abdul Majid. The U.N. confirmed one other death and said houses were destroyed across five districts.
 
A massive landslide of mud and rocks buried houses so deep in the remote mountain village of Sayi Hazara that rescuers gave up trying to use shovels to dig through the buried buildings, said Jawed Basharat, a spokesman for the provincial police chief who was part of a team that examined the village after the slide. There were no visible signs of the buildings underneath."
 
Read more on this story here
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US, Pakistan Fail to Agree on Afghanistan Supply Routes

Carlo Munoz reports for The Hill:

"American negotiators working with Pakistan to reopen critical supply routes into Afghanistan have been called back to the United States, casting further doubt on whether the lines will ever be reopened to U.S. and coalition forces. Defense Department spokesman George Little told reporters on Monday that several members of the U.S. negotiation team had already left Islamabad, with the remaining members scheduled to depart the country within days."

Read the full story here

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The Atlantic: The Geography of Abortion

Richard Florida examines how geography impacts abortion in the United States, and what it tells us: 

"Few issues divide Americans more severely than abortion. Even accounting for changes in the nation's political climate over time, polling numbers consistently show a close to even split in the percent of the population who identify as pro-life or pro-choice. And given the variation in abortion laws across the 50 states, that divide has a definite geographic dimension as well."

Read the full story here

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What good is oil when there's nothing to eat?

For Salon, Fred Pearce writes:

Saudi Arabians have grown colossally rich on the country’s oil reserves. They have grown used to the idea that petrodollars can buy them anything. But Saudis are waking up to the fact that all their wealth will count for nothing if they have nothing to eat. And — despite the conference tables heaving with French, Persian, American and Arab cuisine — that is a growing threat. “If we want our grandchildren to live as we are, we need to change now, or we will be like an African country in 50 years, asking for aid,” Adil Bushnak, a former member of the Saudi Supreme Economic Council, told me during a conference session I was chairing

Learn more here

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Tutu: To live sustainably, we need to talk

Writing for The Huffington Post, Desmond Tutu, Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town, a Nobel Peace Laureate and Chair of The Elders writes on why inter-generational dislogue is so important in tackling the big issues of the day:

For the sake of our planet, a conversation that needs to be heard is the one between generations, between elders and young people around the world -- and those who are in between.

I leave you with this Kenyan proverb a young activist from Dubai sent us: "The world was not given to you by your parents; it was lent to you by your children."
 
The words are beautiful. Their global nature, in our digital age, is inspiring.
 
Read Archbishop Tutu's full article here
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DRONE WATCH: Drone War Needs Accountability

Cynthia Tucker, a visiting professor at the University of Georgia and winner of the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for commentary,writes on the lack of accountability in the drone war:

"Obama’s “targeting killing” campaign has a glaring flaw: It has remained shrouded in semi-secrecy, a classified program that flouts the full disclosure and public debate that democracy demands. The president has protected the United States from the murderous impulses of Islamists, but he has not defended the constitutional principles he is sworn to uphold. …

The public needs more information about the president’s drone war, not less. At the very least, the Obama administration ought to release the memos its lawyers have written to justify its “targeted killings.” That would be a step toward the accountability that the citizens of a democracy deserve. After all, the Obama administration is carrying out its drone war in our names."

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