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Wednesday, May 04th

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NCAA takes firmer stance against LGBT discrimination with new championship process

NCAA vote on Final Four citiesIn an effort to protect its teams and their respective fanbases from discrimination — particularly to those in the LGBT community — in states such as North Carolina, the NCAA has implemented an anti-discrimination process for championship bids, the organization announced on Wednesday following its quarterly meeting in Indianapolis.

"Well, it's a step in the right direction," Pat Griffin, professor emerita at the University of Massachusetts and a leading advocate for the LGBT movement told USA TODAY Sports on Wednesday in response to the NCAA's updated process. "Their silence prior to this was unacceptable. I'm happy to see that they have spoken. I think there's more that they could have done but it's a start."

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Oklahoma court: Oral sex not rape if victim unconscious from alcohol

Oral sex not rape on unconscious victim- An Oklahoma court has shocked local prosecutors by ruling that, according to state law, oral sex with an unconscious victim is not rape.

The state's criminal appeals court made the unanimous ruling late last month, setting off fierce opinions about how many of the country's laws have troublingly antiquated ideas about rape.

The ruling stems from a 2014 case of a 17-year-old boy allegedly assaulting a 16-year-old girl after offering to drive the girl -- who witnesses said was drunk and unconscious -- to her grandmother's house.

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House committee votes to require women to register for draft

Women and the draft

Women would be required to register for the military draft under a House committee bill that comes just months after the Defense Department lifted all gender-based restrictions on front-line combat units.

A divided Armed Services Committee backed the provision in a sweeping defense policy bill that the full House will consider next month, touching off a provocative debate about the role of women in the military.

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Trump fails to impress foreign-policy experts

Trump foreign policy speechIn his address to an elite, invitation-only Washington foreign policy audience Wednesday, Donald Trump promised that, as president, he would restore a "coherent" vision to America's role in the world.

But across the ideological spectrum, and even among natural allies, Trump's speech received a failing grade for coherence and drew snickering and scorn from foreign policy insiders who remain unconvinced that Trump is up to the job.

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13-year-old boy shot by Baltimore police on anniversary of Freddie Gray riot

13 year old boy shot in BaltimoreA Baltimore police officer shot a 13-year-old boy carrying what the police said was a replica gun on Wednesday, the anniversary of Freddie Gray’s funeral and the riot that later spread through the city.

“It’s not lost on me what 27 April means to this city, means to this police department, what it means to me personally,” police commissioner Kevin Davis told reporters near the scene. “So I wish I wasn’t here describing to you all what appears to be a very unusual circumstance of a 13-year-old young man making a decision to leave his home with a replica gun in his hand.”

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TN Gov Signs Bill Allowing Therapists to Refuse LGBT Service

TN Gov. HaslanTennessee Gov. Bill Haslam signed a bill into law on Wednesday allowing counselors and therapists to refuse clients based on their beliefs — seen by several advocacy groups as part of a national legislative effort to enact laws that let service providers reject LGBT people.

Proponents of the law had argued it was necessary to ensure clients would get help from providers best suited for their needs instead of getting stuck with professionals who are a bad fit.

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Pay-to-Play Cop Bob Bates Found Guilty in Fatal Shooting of Black Man

Bob Bates sentenced to 4 yearsA jury Wednesday recommended that Bob Bates, a Tulsa volunteer sheriff’s deputy, serve four years in prison for fatally shooting an unarmed black man last year when he mistook his gun for a Taser.

Bob Bates was a wealthy insurance executive turned volunteer cop when he killed an unarmed black man in Tulsa. The grandpa deputy claimed he mistook his gun for a Taser when he delivered the fatal blast.

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Study: Oxygen drain will be apparent in oceans by 2030s

Oxygen drain on oceansClimate models suggest climate change is slowly sapping oxygen from the world's oceans. In some places, declining oxygen levels are already discernible, but in most oceanic regions, scientists struggle to differentiate between climate change-related losses and natural fluctuations.

A new model, developed by researchers at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, suggests scientists' differentiation difficulties won't last much longer. By the 2030s, oxygen losses caused by climate change will be widespread and readily apparent.

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Former House speaker sentenced to more than a year in prison

Denny Hastert sentenced to 15 months- Dennis Hastert, the Republican who for eight years presided over the House and was second in the line of succession to the presidency, was sentenced Wednesday to more than a year in prison in the hush-money case that revealed accusations he sexually abused teenagers while coaching high school wrestling.

The case makes the former speaker one of the highest-ranking American politicians ever sentenced to prison. The visibly angry judge repeatedly rebuked the 74-year-old before issuing the 15-month sentence, telling him that his abuse devastated the lives of victims and would probably make it harder than ever for parents to trust other adults with their children.

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