Monthly Archives: May 2011
Finally Rihanna premiered video for “Man Down” on 106 & Park. It was filmed in Jamaica by director Anthony Mandler. Rihanna was looking fabulous, of course!
The video for the song, co-written by Shontelle, touches on the sensitive subject of domestic abuse which ends in a “Man Down” situation.
Behind the scenes exclusive footage!
Singer Amy Winehouse was told to quit drinking by doctors treating her for alcohol abuse.
She was told to give up her drinking habits for good, or face serious problems with her health.
Winehouse, checked herself into a treament facility in London after her excessive drinking resulted in her being unable to attend the premier of film director boyfriend Traviss’s new movie ‘Screwed’ last week.
She has had the support of her boyfriend, Reg Traviss, and father, Mitch, during this hard time. A source for “The Sun” was quoted by the tabloid saying, “It’s the last chance saloon for Amy. Doctors have come down hard on her because of the severity of her situation. It’s a harsh reality but she had to hear it.”
“They are worried about her. Mitch has been down this road before during Amy’s drug addiction. But she is there of her own accord this time and wants to sort herself out,” the source was also quoted as saying.
Nicole ‘Snooki’ Polizzi was taken into police custody in Italy on Monday after hitting a police car.
According to TMZ, the reality star was driving around the city of Florence when she rammed into a local cop car, wedging her and co-star Deena Cortese in the Fiat Multipla, along with a member of the MTV production crew.
According to PEOPLE, Snooki and Cortese were taken to the police station to fill out an accident report. No drugs or alcohol were suspected in the incident.
The MTV stars refused medical treatment, but it is reported that two police officers were taken to the emergency room and treated for whiplash, bruises and cuts.
A sources told TMZ that Cortese had to climb out the window of the car Snooki was driving, as it was stuck between a highway security wall and the cop car. Sources also told TMZ that although Snooki was taken into custody it is not a formal arrest.
To make matters even more bizarre is that the cop car Snooki hit was one assigned for the MTV stars’ personal safety, according to PEOPLE.
This isn’t the first run in with the law for Snooki. Last July she was arrested in Seaside Heights, New Jersey for disorderly conduct while filming season two of the hit series. She and her castmates are currently filming the fourth season in Florence, Italy.
What does it take to become a star? In the fall of 1948, Marilyn Monroe had just a few roles in box office flops on her résumé — but LIFE photographer J. R. Eyerman apparently saw enough of a glimmer in the 22-year-old starlet to follow her through the showbiz training that promised to make her big. The incredible — and seldom seen — images in this gallery are the first a LIFE photographer ever took of Monroe, though the magazine did not publish them at the time. (In fact, she wouldn’t show up in LIFE’s pages until October 1949, along with seven other then-unfamiliar Hollywood “girls”). But now, in celebration of what would have been Monroe’s 85th birthday (June 1, 2011), LIFE.com presents these rare gems, restored to their original glory and showing early-career Monroe in the dance, acting, and voice classes that helped make her an icon for the ages. Here: Marilyn runs a hand through her long curls — dyed but not yet that famous platinum hue — in one of Eyerman’s portraits.
Source: Life Magazine
Basketball Wives is back with more drama than ever! This season is filmed in beautiful Miami, Florida! Of course, all your favorite characters are back including: Shaunie, Evelyn, Jennifer, Tammi, Royce, and even Suzie. This season, they brought in Meeka Claxton, who’s husband is retired NBA player Speedy Claxton, to join the cast. It’s obvious from the first time you see her, that she’ll add some juice to the show. We don’t want to spoil it for you so…
Watch the full episode Now!
After the fact, Meeka had some behind the scenes footage of her talking about Royce having a baby by Orlando Magic star Dwight Howard! Listen to what she had to say, that wasn’t on the show!
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A respected international panel of scientists says cellphones are possible cancer-causing agents, putting them in the same category as the pesticide DDT, gasoline engine exhaust and coffee.
The classification was issued Tuesday in Lyon, France, by the International Agency for Research on Cancer after a review of dozens of published studies. The agency is an arm of the World Health Organization and its assessment now goes to WHO and national health agencies for possible guidance on cellphone use.
Classifying agents as “possibly carcinogenic” doesn’t mean they automatically cause cancer and some experts said the ruling shouldn’t change people’s cellphone habits.
“Anything is a possible carcinogen,” said Donald Berry, a professor of biostatistics at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas. He was not involved in the WHO cancer group’s assessment. “This is not something I worry about and it will not in any way change how I use my cellphone,” he said — speaking from his cellphone.
The same cancer research agency lists alcoholic drinks as a known carcinogen and night shift work as a probable carcinogen. Anyone’s risk for cancer depends on many factors, from genetic makeup to the amount and length of time of an exposure.
After a weeklong meeting on the type of electromagnetic radiation found in cellphones, microwaves and radar, the expert panel said there was limited evidence cellphone use was linked to two types of brain tumors and inadequate evidence to draw conclusions for other cancers.
“We found some threads of evidence telling us how cancers might occur, but there were acknowledged gaps and uncertainties,” said Jonathan Samet of the University of Southern California, the panel’s chairman.
“The WHO’s verdict means there is some evidence linking mobile phones to cancer but it is too weak to draw strong conclusions from,” said Ed Yong, head of health information at Cancer Research U.K. “If such a link exists, it is unlikely to be a large one.”
Last year, results of a large study found no clear link between cellphones and cancer. But some advocacy groups contend the study raised serious concerns because it showed a hint of a possible connection between very heavy phone use and glioma, a rare but often deadly form of brain tumor. However, the numbers in that subgroup weren’t sufficient to make the case.
The study was controversial because it began with people who already had cancer and asked them to recall how often they used their cellphones more than a decade ago.
In about 30 other studies done in Europe, New Zealand and the U.S., patients with brain tumors have not reported using their cellphones more often than unaffected people.
Because cellphones are so popular, it may be impossible for experts to compare cellphone users who develop brain tumors with people who don’t use the devices. According to a survey last year, the number of cellphone subscribers worldwide has hit 5 billion, or nearly three-quarters of the global population.
People’s cellphone habits have also changed dramatically since the first studies began years ago and it’s unclear if the results of previous research would still apply today.
Since many cancerous tumors take decades to develop, experts say it’s impossible to conclude cellphones have no long-term health risks. The studies conducted so far haven’t tracked people for longer than about a decade.
Cellphones send signals to nearby towers via radio frequency waves, a form of energy similar to FM radio waves and microwaves. But the radiation produced by cellphones cannot directly damage DNA and is different from stronger types of radiation like X-rays or ultraviolet light. At very high levels, radio frequency waves from cellphones can heat up body tissue, but that is not believed to damage human cells.
Some experts recommended people use a headset or earpiece if they are worried about the possible health dangers of cellphones. “If there is a risk, most of it goes away with a wireless earpiece,” said Otis Brawley, chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society.
Brawley said people should focus on the real health hazards of cellphones. “Cellphones may cause brain tumors but they kill far more people through automobile accidents,” he said. Brawley added it was also reasonable to limit children’s use of cellphones since their brains are still developing.
Earlier this year, a U.S. National Institutes of Health study found that cellphone use can speed up brain activity, but it is unknown whether that has any dangerous health effects.
The cellphone industry trade group, CTIA-The Wireless Association, pointed to two U.S. agencies that have found no evidence cellphones are linked to cancer — the Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Communications Commission.
The WHO’s cancer research agency has reviewed more than 900 occupational exposures, chemicals and other agents since 1971, classifying their link to cancer by labeling them from carcinogenic to probably not carcinogenic. The American Cancer Society has estimated that only about 6 percent of cancers are related to environmental causes and most of that is on-the-job occupational exposure.
Source: Yahoo! Health
A new ad for Cadbury chocolate is leaving a bitter taste with Naomi Campbell. The supermodel is looking at “every option available,” including legal action, in response to a promotion that compares the celebrity to a Dairy Milk Bliss bar.
The ad reads, “Move over Naomi, there’s a new diva in town,” and shows the candy bar nestled in diamonds. The campaign ran in supermarkets and newspapers in the U.K.
Campbell told the U.K. newspaper the Independent, “I am shocked. It’s upsetting to be described as chocolate, not just for me, but for all black women and black people. I do not find any humor in this. It is insulting and hurtful.”
The star, who has been the center of controversies in the past (forced community service for hurling a cellphone at her maid comes to mind), is this time being backed by the British organization Operation Black Vote. The group called on the U.S. company Kraft, which owns Cadbury, to apologize and is considering a boycott of the company’s products. Worse, Naomi’s mom is mad.
Here’s the ad in question. The campaign ran in supermarkets and newspapers in the U.K.
Valerie Morris told the Independent, “I’m deeply upset by this racist advert. Do these people think they can insult black people and we just take it? This is the 21st century, not the 1950s. Shame on Cadbury.”
Cadbury said in a statement that it had pulled the billboards with no plans to repeat the ad, and added, “It was certainly never our intention to cause any offense, and the campaign itself is a light-hearted take on the social pretensions of Cadbury Dairy Milk Bliss.”
Are the glory days of the archaeologist over? Has everything cool and ancient already been discovered? Nope. Thanks to ever-improving technology, several new findings have electrified the Web.
A robot explorer recently discovered ancient markings at the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. The robotic device found the markings inside a secret chamber inaccessible to humans–and then proceeded to film the painted hieroglyphics and stone markings, which hadn’t been seen by human eyes in 4,500 years, via a small robotic camera that was fit through a tiny hole in a stone wall.
It is too soon to tell what the markings mean, but experts are hoping they may shed some light on why the ancient Egyptians originally built the tunnels. An article from CNN explains that the tunnel is “one of several mysterious passages leading from the larger king’s and queen’s chambers.”
This wasn’t the first time a robot explored the passageways–but it was the first time a robot could focus on details on the walls. This breakthrough occurred thanks to a new kind of micro-camera that can be bent side-to-side instead of just focusing straight ahead.
News of the discovery quickly took the Web by storm. Over the past 24 hours, Web searches for “great pyramid of giza” and “egypt pyramids” both spiked into breakout status. Also seeing big bumps in lookups: “hieroglyphic dictionary” and “hieroglyphic meanings.”
Meanwhile, other technologically enhanced discovery expeditions have turn up other fascinating new information about the pyramids in recent days. Archaeologists from the United States (with some help from the BBC) used satellite imagery to discover 17 pyramids beneath the sand and silt in Egypt. An article from Canada’s CBC explains that 1,000 tombs and around 3,000 other buildings were also discovered thanks to the technology.
How does the satellite-mapping work? According to the CBC, “kiln-fired bricks used to build ancient cities can be distinguished from the earth covering it” on the infrared satellite images. This find may be just the tip of the iceberg, so to speak. There may be many more buildings, tombs and pyramids buried further beneath the Earth’s surface.
Their tools have changed, but archaeologists shouldn’t fear for their jobs. Clearly, the Earth still holds many secrets–if you look hard enough.
(Egyptian archaeology workers ferrying sand in trolleys on rail tracks in front of the Great Pyramid, in Giza, Egypt. AP/Amr Nibil)
Source: Yahoo! News
WASHINGTON – A year ago, a drug dealer caught with 50 grams of crack cocaine faced a mandatory 10 years in federal prison. Today, new rules cut that to as little as five years, and thousands of inmates not covered by the change are saying their sentences should be reduced, too.
“Please make this situation fair to all of us,” prisoner Shauna Barry-Scott wrote from West Virginia to the U.S. Sentencing Commission, which oversees federal sentencing guidelines. “Treat us the same.”
The commission meets Wednesday in Washington to consider making the new crack sentencing guidelines retroactive, a step that could bring early release for as many as 1 in every 18 federal prisoners, or approximately 12,000 inmates.
The commission has already received more than 37,000 letters on the issue, most from inmates and their families and friends. Many of the letters are form letters drafted by interest groups such as Families Against Mandatory Minimums, but others contain personal pleas. A woman from New York wrote to say her nephew should be “given another chance at society.” A mother from Illinois said her child was sentenced “very harshly.”
Prisoners have also been writing judges and public defenders, asking if the new law might help them.
“Dear Judge Blake, I am forwarding this letter to you for your assistance that concerns the new crack cocaine law that was just passed,” Steven Harris wrote to a federal judge in Maryland, asking about his 10-year sentence for crack possession and possession of a firearm during the crime. “I would like to know if this law will help me.”
Congress and President Barack Obama agreed in August to reduce the minimum penalties for crack. But the law did not apply to prisoners who were locked up before the change.
Michael Nachmanoff, the lead public defender in the eastern district of Virginia, where about 1,000 prisoners would be affected, the most of any area in the country, says his office has been getting about a half-dozen calls or letters a month.
Nachmanoff, who will testify before the commission Wednesday, says his office is prepared to act if the commission makes changes. And he says anyone who worries that retroactivity would be going light on offenders is wrong.
“All of these people will wind up serving long sentences,” he said. “This is really about fixing a really unfair problem that now everybody recognizes was wrong.”
Since the 1990s, advocates have complained that crack offenders are treated more harshly than those arrested with powdered cocaine. Many critics view the disparity as racial discrimination because black drug offenders are more likely to be charged with federal crack offenses and to serve longer prison terms than other offenders.
The Fair Sentencing Act, signed by Obama in August, attempts to remedy that disparity by changing the amount of crack cocaine required to trigger five and 10-year mandatory sentences.
Before the law was passed, a person convicted of possessing 5 grams of crack cocaine — about the weight of five packets of Sweet’n Low — automatically got sentenced to five years. Now it takes 28 grams to trigger a five-year mandatory sentence, an amount more in line with powdered cocaine. Possessing 280 grams of crack triggers a 10-year sentence as opposed to the old standard of 50 grams — about the same weight as 10 nickels.
Inmates who received the mandatory minimum sentence under the old system will not be eligible for early release because only Congress can make mandatory minimum sentences retroactive. But inmates who received above the minimum could see their sentences reduced, and others whose offense did not rise to the level of a mandatory minimum could be eligible for earlier release, too.
The commission estimates that the average sentence reduction for applicable inmates would be approximately three years.
Not everyone supports the proposal for retroactivity. The Fraternal Order of Police opposed the law Obama signed and plans to oppose retroactivity before the commission, arguing criminals were aware of the penalties for their actions.
“They knew what they were doing. They went into it with their eyes open,” Jim Pasco, executive director of the Fraternal Order of Police, which represents more than 300,000 law enforcement officers.
Prisoners charged with crack offenses have already had one recent experience with retroactive sentence reductions. In 2007, the commission revised the crack sentencing guidelines, reducing sentences by an average of two years. Approximately 16,000 offenders had their sentences reduced.
For the change to be made retroactive, four members of the six-member commission would have to vote to support the idea. If that happens, Congress could still reject or modify the guidelines until the end of October.
Given that the Fair Sentencing Act passed Congress almost unanimously and that the commission has acted previously to make sentencing changes retroactive, Marc Mauer of the Washington-based Sentencing Project said he is cautiously optimistic that the proposal for retroactivity will be adopted.
The commission is expected to rule in the next few months, but that ruling can’t come soon enough for some prisoners.
“I love and miss my children very much,” inmate Samuel Tirado wrote to the commission from his New Jersey penitentiary. “And I hope to be reunited with them sooner than 2022.”
Source: JESSICA GRESKO, Associated Press