Overseas Adoptions Come of Age

MomAdoptedChild150x120.jpgHere’s a compelling feature story from the Chicago Tribune on the challenge of overseas adoptions and how perspectives and approaches on the matter have evolved over the years. According to the article, Americans have adopted a half-million children from overseas in the last 40 years. In the early days of international adoptions, many parents believed their children’s lives would be easier and they would face less prejudice if they shed their native culture, but today that mindset has shifted 180 degrees — which has led to a new set of challenges.

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Shoshana Johnson: American Hero

I'm Still StandingYou probably remember Jessica Lynch’s story of being famously captured as a prisoner of war during the early stages of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The media certainly played it up as an inspirational story of a young, blonde, female hero. But do you remember Shoshana Johnson’s equally harrowing story? Johnson, the first black female prisoner of war, has a new book out titled I’m Still Standing: From Captive U.S. Soldier to Free Citizen — My Journey Home.

According to AOL’s BlackVoices, Johnson was shot in both ankles as her U.S. Army convoy wandered into the city of Nasiriyah, touching off a violent skirmish that left 11 U.S. soldiers dead and six abducted and held captive, including Johnson and her friend, Jessica Lynch.

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Greensboro, N.C.: 50 Years After the Sit-In

Woolworth's StoolsFifty years ago, on Feb. 1, four black college students sat down at a whites-only Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro, N.C. The “Greensboro Four,” along with friends and supporters, returned to the counter every day for six months until the lunch counter was desegregated.

“We feel that this place here and this entire building is holy ground,” says Skip Alston, Guilford County commissioner. “What took place here on Feb. 1, 1960, was very holy and ordained.”

Check out NPR’s excellent report on this historic event, and find out how that Greensboro Woolworth’s building went on to become the International Civil Rights Center & Museum.

'Pants on the Ground' Guy Is a Civil Rights Hero

General Platt on American IdolAs you probably know, American Idol is back for its 9th season, and every year the show loves to showcase auditioning performers who have absolutely no chance of making into the competition, but who are incredibly entertaining nonetheless (think William Hung). This year’s leading candidate for top prize in that category seems to be General Larry Platt, the 62-year-old spoken-word performer (you can’t really call him a singer or rapper), who had the AI judges falling out last night with his original composition “Pants on the Ground.” It was evident from the outset that this one would go down in AI history as one of the most memorable auditions. Top judge Simon Cowell even remarked, “I have a horrible feeling that song could be a hit.” And, as might be expected, Platt has created quite the stir on Twitter, YouTube, and other social networks. (Check out a “remix” version of the tune below.)

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