Short Takes: News From All Over: November 18, 2004

Confessing Christ in a World of Violence
By Staff, Sojourners
A statement signed by more than 200 Christian leaders supports a new ‘confession of Christ’ to reestablish Jesus’ message of peace in a time when His name is being evoked for war, nationalism, and political partisanship. The statement offers five points reaffirming Christ’s peaceful nature and admonishing those who would claim He represents any nation’s interests. — Harry Sheff

The Gay Ad Beat
By Staff, Commercial Closet
Commercial Closet is an online database that archives and tracks lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender (LGBT) portrayals in advertising. A section dubbed, ‘Today’s Featured Ad,’ and a Top 10 list are among the offerings of this unique and comprehensive resource for ad agencies, students, professors, and media consumers. — Martin Brown

Nollywood Confidential
By Jamais Cascio,
While Hollywood worries that the advent of cheap, powerful software and hardware is allowing Americans to make professional-looking dubs of its product, in Nigeria, the same technology has led to Nollywood — a virtual industry of homegrown, homemade movies that are incredibly popular among African expatriates living in the U.S. and Europe. — Elizabeth Dwoskin

Israeli Maps, or, the Hertz Rental Car Forecast Of Future Israeli Borders
By John Petrovato, Indymedia
While touring Israel, author John Petrovato noted that Hertz’s ‘Touring Map of Israel’ includes the West Bank and many Palestinian cities as part of the State of Israel. In this short essay, he wonders whether this is pure propaganda, or simply one nation’s spatial understanding of a two-party conflict. — Martin Brown

ABC Investigation Claims Matthew Shepard May Not Have Been Hate Crime Victim
By Doug Windsor,
Russell Henderson and Aaron McKinney, serving life sentences for killing University of Wyoming student Matthew Shepard in 1998, are now claiming that Shepard’s homosexuality had nothing to do with the murder, which was prosecuted as a hate crime. 20/20 conducted the first interviews with Henderson and McKinney since their incarceration, and will air an investigative report on the topic on November 26. — Martin Brown

Diverse Teachers, Excelling Students
By Staff,
While studies have shown that kids learn best from teachers with whom they share an ethnic or cultural background, Congressional initiatives that call for the recruitment of ‘highly qualified’ teachers, such as the No Child Left Behind Act, have not addressed the severe lack of diversity in America’s classrooms. While the public school population is 28% African American and Hispanic, teachers are 90% white. And in more than a third of public schools, there’s not one faculty member of color on staff. — Elizabeth Dwoskin

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