? What would you do if someone called you a slave? What would you do if that same person said that the industry you work for feeds people "filth, ignorance, and stupidity"? Well, if you are a black journalist and the speaker is Louis Farrakhan, you give him a standing ovation. That's exactly what happened when Farrakhan made these remarks in a speech before the National Association of Black Journalists.
? Reeling under the onslaught of foreign competition, Taiwan has enacted strict new import quotas–on foreign wives. It seems that marriages between Taiwanese men and foreign women are now outpacing marriages between Taiwanese. Taiwanese men reportedly find their countrywomen to be disobedient and too independent minded. To improve the marriage prospects of Taiwanese women, the government has imposed strict quotas on the number of spouses who can immigrate each year: 1,080 from China, 360 from Indonesia, 420 from Burma, and so on.
? Political correctness may be coming to a map near you. At the latest meeting of the Domestic Names Committee of the U.S. Board of Geographic Names, activists from around the country had some demands: A Texas stream should definitely not be named Cripple Creek as a local judge wished, and two bodies of water in Minnesota called Squaw Lake should be renamed. The names are said to be culturally insensitive.
? A nasty case of sexual harassment has happened in Hamden, Connecticut. Mayor Lillian D. Clayman was looking at the new official car that had been delivered to her when she noticed the license plate. It was number HN-69. She immediately noticed the sexual connotation, and demanded that it be taken back. The police chief, John P. Ambrogio, who is in charge of these matters, told her that it was a number that had been assigned to the city by the Department of Motor Vehicles years ago. But the mayor saw through that excuse. She called it a "deliberate, vulgar, and sexist" attack by the police. The police chief replaced the plate, but he said the mayor's behavior made no sense.
? Saudi Arabia's top cleric has denounced travel brochures as a "great evil." Sheik Abdul-Aziz bin Baz warns that traveling to the West could expose young Muslims to temptation and corrupt their souls.
? Maybe Saudi youth could travel to Iran. In Tehran 28 teenagers have been arrested and sentenced. Their crime? Attending a party where Western music was played. Their sentences? Each was given 10 lashes with a whip and fined $33. Three of the youth were also given jail sentences.
? Speaking of prisons, an inmate in Britain's Parkhurst Prison hit upon a novel way to escape. He used a fluorescent-yellow felt pen to color his body. He hoped to make people believe he was jaundiced and get transferred to a less-secure hospital. The plan was foiled when a guard saw him coloring himself.
? Prosecutors and police in Woburn, Massachusetts, are investigating the Anchor Baptist Church. The church allegedly lured kids from a nearby housing project with promises of pizza and basketball games. But the children were instead preached to and given full-body baptisms. The church reportedly never even gave them any pizza. The children's parents are mostly Catholic, and quite upset.
? In Spain, hundreds of panicked people called TV and radio station switchboards after a newscaster broke in with a report showing spaceships hovering over New York City. The report was actually an ad for the movie Independence Day. Text at the bottom of the TV screen clearly labeled it as such. But "apparently people can't watch footage, listen, and read at the same time," said Jose Luis Andarias, the ad executive behind the commercial.
? The book God's Answers to Your Questions, published by the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, has Roman Catholics outraged. The book likens the pope to the Beast in the biblical book of Revelation, making the papacy an ally of Satan and its followers tools of the devil.
? And in Amsterdam, police used a novel way to capture a suspected mugger. They took the tip of a thumb bitten off by one of his victims and matched it to prints in their files. Upon his arrest, the alleged assailant called the man who bit off his finger a "cannibal."