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Abuse of a Two Finger Test

When someone breaks into your home and steals from you, you have much evidence that a crime was committed — the broken door, the mess made by the criminal would make it evident. When it comes to the extremely vile crime of rape, however, it is considerably more difficult to prove that anything happened and it often comes down to the word of the victim against the person or people being accused of the crime. What seems even worse than this, however, is when the victim is forced to prove that the crime took place through humiliating tests — such as the so called ‘two-finger’ test that currently is employed in India for many women who have undergone the worst sort of abuse.

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Maintaining Midwestern Goodness in the Big City

I’ve been spending a lot of time in my local Duane Reade/Walgreens — DuaneGreens? — this week trying to suss out exactly how and why the transition between the two merged pharmacies is working in the effect of Balance Rewards.  So far, so good — but there have been a few jukes and flukes.

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Learning English via SMS in India

Nokia are doing interesting things with cellphones like providing Braille SMS on their phones.  However, the plan to teach English to poor rural children in India using cellphones seems like a bad promotional gimmick rather than an honest effort at education.

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The Loss of the Immigrant Mind

The USA is losing its immigrant mind!  The landed have traditionally helped build America into what it is today:  A great mosaic of thoughts, colors and dreams.  Today, because of punishing politics and a shrinking world, Harvard University reports immigrants are returning to their homeland instead of building a better life in the USA.  An entire generation of immigrants is giving up on their American Dream and I’m not sure if we can blame them for the departure.

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No Word for Depression

We rely on words to define us.  If we try to express a specific condition without the right words attached, we become lost and we are unable to clearly understand each other.  While teaching one of my Public Health courses, a group discussion about clinical depression led us into an examination of the word “depression” and how the home cultures of some of the students’ parents did not allow, or define, the concept of “depression” in a serious, medical, sense.

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Black: The Indian Helen Keller Movie

Black” is one of those movies you yearn to see again and again and you can never ever quite get the story out of your head.  The movie is a love story of self-discovery and education for a Deaf and Blind woman who does not speak.  She lives in an internal darkness.  She wants a way out into the light of the world.  The box for the special edition of the DVD is pocked with Braille dots you can feel with your fingertips, thus creating a temptation, and an expectation for the drama of learning to come:

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