News and Blues

Your weekly dose of weird and funny news.

One Is the Loneliest Number

Minorities may perceive entering a room full of white people as “microaggression,” according to a report by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “Students of color reported feeling uncomfortable and unwelcomed just walking into or sitting in the classroom, especially if they were the only person of color, or one of a few,” the report stated. Academics define “microaggressions” as “brief, everyday exchanges that send denigrating messages to certain individuals because of their group membership.” (National Review)


Iran has launched a state-supported matchmaking website. Deputy Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Mahmoud Golzari cautioned that “Find Your Equal” is not a dating site. Its goal is to produce 100,000 new marriages in the coming year. “We have high demand for marriage and 11 million (young single adults) who are increasing every day,” Golzari said.

Marriages are necessary to overcome Iran’s declining birthrate, according to the government, which in 2014 banned vasectomies and permanent birth control measures in women. Officials, including supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, have publicly urged couples to have more babies to repudiate “undesirable aspects of Western lifestyles.” (The Washington Post)

Rescue Follies

When Rob Dorzek, 29, called 911 to report he and three friends had been boating on Ontario’s Lake Wanapitei after dark and crashed into a small island, the dispatcher delayed alerting rescuers for an hour while she tried to figure out their location, despite being sent a map that pinpointed it using GPS. During this time, the dispatcher instructed Dorzek to start a signal fire. Dorzek told her he couldn’t because he was holding his girlfriend to keep her from slipping into the water.

After the dispatcher insisted the fire was the only way to direct rescuers, Dorzek used a boat cushion to start one. It quickly spread to the underbrush and then to the boat hull, which ignited, killing one of the four. A rescue boat was finally launched after the crew, which didn’t know of the 911 call, spotted the fire and arrived in eight minutes. Another man and Dorzek’s girlfriend died from injuries. An internal report by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care commended the dispatcher who handled the call. (The Toronto Star)

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