Today’s Lady News: Kids Need Permission Slip For Dictionary With “Oral Sex” Definition

  • After a parent complained that the Merriam Webster dictionary in the classrooms of Menifee Union School District in California contained a definition for “oral sex,” schools pulled the dictionaries off the shelves. On Tuesday, a committee decided to return the Merriam Webster dictionaries to the fourth- and fifth-grade classrooms, but all children must have a signed permission slip to access them. Students who don’t have permission to use the Merriam Webster will have to use an alternative dictionary. [L.A. Times]
  • But despite their sex-drenched dictionaries, the nation’s youth are not so troubled! High school senior Li Boynton, 18, who won top honors in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, will be sitting with Michelle Obama tonight at the State of the Union Address. Li is headed to Yale in the fall and created a cheap way for the world’s poor to test water for contaminants using glowing bacteria. [Houston Chronicle]

  • The first book of former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice’s two-book memoir, Extraordinary, Ordinary People, will be released by Random House on Oct. 12. The publishers will also publish a young adult version of Rice’s book for kids. [New York Times]
  • Politicians recently introduced a bill to Nebraska’s state legislature to ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. According to the Columbus Telegram, anti-abortion activists are specifically targeting Dr. LeRoy Carhart of Omaha, who provides controversial second- and third-trimester abortions. [Columbus Telegram]
  • I’m really not sure why The New York Daily News devoted an entire article to how NY Senator Kirsten Gillibrand lost 15 to 20 lbs. of baby weight. Gillibrand is the mother of a 20-month-old and a 6-year-old son. [New York Daily News]
  • Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing, the two filmmakers behind the amazing documentary “Jesus Camp,” debuted a new doc at the Sundance Film Festival on Sunday. “12th and Delaware” tells the story of a street in Fort Pierce, Florida, where there is an abortion clinic on one side and on the other side, a pro-life “crisis pregnancy center,” which encourages women not to end the pregnancy. [L.A. Times]
  • Harriet Richardson Ames, a 100-year-old New Hampshire woman, finally received her bachelor’s degree the day before she died. Awww. [Fox News]
  • Ruth P. Smith, a reproductive rights advocate who helped found what is now the National Abortion Rights Action League/Pro-Choice America, passed away on Friday at age 102. Wow, what an exciting century to be a women’s rights activist: Smith was only 13 when women received the right to vote in 1920 and in her 60s when abortion was legalized in 1973. [New York Times]

INTERNATIONAL

  • Hey, do you know what’s just like homosexuality? Anorexia! According to the Archbishop of Belgium Andre-Joseph Leonard, while speaking on Belgian TV, “Homosexuality is not the same as normal sex in the same way that anorexia is not a normal appetite.” [Radio Netherlands Worldwide]
  • Romania is the country of origin for most of the European Union’s sex workers, a recent survey has found. Romania surpassed other past top countries including Russia, Ukraine and Bulgaria. [BBC]
  • The Handmaid’s Tale author Margaret Atwood schooled the world’s global elite at the World Economic Forum when she lectured them about how they have “done their best to finish off” art. “It’s as old as humanity. It isn’t a frill,” Atwood said. “Art isn’t only what we do, it’s who we are.” The Canadian author received a prize from the WEF in Davos, Switzerland. [Toronto Globe & Mail]
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