Alabama Court Overturns Gay Sex Ban

Jun 17, 2014, 12:30 pm EDT

An Alabama Appeals Court has struck down a state law that criminalized gay sex, regardless of whether it was consensual.

The appeals court unanimously ruled that an Alabama law that made oral and anal sex illegal was intended to prosecute homosexuals and was unconstitutional based on the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2003 Lawrence v. Texas decision, USA TODAY notes.

Under the Alabama law struck down by the court, “consent is no defense to a prosecution under this subdivision.” The appeals court made its ruling during an appeal of a 2010 sexual misconduct conviction of a man who claimed he had engaged in consensual sex acts with another man. Read 

TSLA: Tesla Direct Sales Get One Step Closer in NJ

Jun 17, 2014, 11:07 am EDT

Despite a setback earlier this year, New Jersey consumers may soon be able to buy Tesla Motors (TSLA) cars directly from TSLA again.

On Monday, the N.J. state Assembly voted 77-to-0 in favor of a bill that would permit manufacturers of zero-emission vehicles to sell directly to consumers from up to four showrooms in the Garden State. There was no debate on the bill and only one abstention, the Star-Ledger notes.

In April, the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission ordered TSLA to stop direct vehicle sales in the state, a move backed by Republican Governor Chris Christie. TSLA had been selling cars from two showrooms prior to the decision, which was backed by the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers. Read 

Islamic State of Iraq and Syria: What Is ISIS?

Jun 16, 2014, 12:51 pm EDT

Already troubled Iraq is on the verge of a major international crisis as soldiers of the radical Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) sweep through the country, capturing cities and towns and apparently moving toward the capital of Baghdad. Source: Wikipedia

ISIS was formed by elements of al-Qaida in Iraq and has spent the last few years battling the regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria’s bloody civil war. ISIS, composed of Sunni Islamic extremists, has gained a reputation for such horrific brutality that even al-Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahiri has distanced his mass-murdering terror group from ISIS, the Guardian notes.

In Syria, ISIS has been blamed for mass killings and torture. The group has now posted photographs and videos that allegedly show its members torturing and executing captured Iraqi soldiers. Read 

Iraq Blocks Facebook, YouTube, Google, Twitter

Jun 13, 2014, 1:32 pm EDT

The Iraqi government has decided to block several websites, including Facebook (FB), Twitter (TWTR), Google (GOOG), YouTube and multiple pornographic websites.

The exact reason behind the Iraqi government’s decision to block these websites is unknown, but it’s believed to be part of an effort to stop the use of media outlets by Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) militants. These militants have used such websites to promote their actions in the central and northern parts of the country, reports Kuwait News Agency.

The ISIL militants have been moving through Iraq and captured two additional cities this week. One of these cities was Mosul, the second-largest city in the country. Read 

LMT: Lockheed Martin Evacuates All Employees From Iraq

Jun 13, 2014, 12:26 pm EDT

Lockheed Martin (LMT), a global security company, has announced plans to evacuate all of its employees from Iraq.

Lockheed Martin decided to pull its employees out of Iraq over safety concerns. These concerns were caused by escalating violence in the country due to Sunni militants. These militants claimed two more cities in Iraq this week, including the country’s second-largest city, Mosul, reports The Los Angeles Times.

Lockheed Martin hasn’t announced how many employees it has in Iraq, but it has confirmed that all of them are safe for the time being. These employees were in the country to support its F-16 program, L.A. Times notes. Read 

Donald Trump, Chicago Mayor Face Off Over 20-Foot Sign

Jun 13, 2014, 11:05 am EDT

Never one to shy away from self-promotion, Donald Trump has caused a furor in Chicago by putting his name in lights on the city’s second tallest skyscraper.

Donald Trump has put his name on many of the buildings he owns. However, the new sign, which features the name TRUMP in 20-foot-high letters that are lit at night has drawn complaints from Chicago architectural critics and politicians. Mayor Rahn Emanuel has also criticized the sign and is reportedly seeking legal means to force Trump to alter or ditch it, CBS News notes.

For his part, Donald Trump is unfazed by the complaints.  “It will become a very iconic sign. It’s a very high quality, very beautiful sign that I think enhances the building greatly,” he commented. Read 

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