TIME Retail

Target to Stop Selling Shirt Claimed by Designer as Copycat

Target Exits Canada
Colin Perkel—AP Shoppers enter a Target store in Toronto on Jan. 15, 2015.

An image of the designer holding a similar version of the shirt went viral this week

Target said Thursday it would no longer sell a shirt that an Oregon-based designer said was identical to one that she had designed.

The retailer said in a statement that it was “concerned” when the closeness in style of the two shirts was brought to its attention. “We’ve been in contact with the vendor that produced this tee,” Target said. “We’ve also reached out directly to the designer.”

An image of the black tee, which features “#Merica” where the stars would normally appear on the American flag, went viral this week after the designer posted an image of herself wearing her own design while holding Target’s version.

Melissa Lay had distributed the design via her SandiLake Clothing company; she sells her products through Etsy. Lay told ABC News on Thursday she was pleased with Target’s decision, saying, “I’m just really happy that that was their decision and that was exactly what I was hoping would happen.”

[ABC News]

TIME Transportation

Amtrak Train Catches Fire in Milwaukee, No Injuries Reported

The train's engine caught fire

An Amtrak train traveling from Chicago caught fire as it rolled into Milwaukee on Thursday afternoon, but all passengers and crew were evacuated safely.

The fire, which the Milwaukee Fire Department described as minor, sparked in the train’s engine. Firefighters were notified about the fire at 12:06 p.m. and it had been contained by 12:54, local officials told TIME. Train traffic was halted in the area.

All occupants of the train were evacuated and placed on buses as the fire was being extinguished, according to Cassie Taylor of the Milwaukee Fire Department. There were no reported injuries from either passengers or crew.

Amtrak did not immediately return calls for comment.

The fire followed a much more serious Amtrak accident earlier this week, when a passenger train derailed on Amtrak’s northeast corridor, killing at least eight people and injuring more than 200. The train was traveling double the suggested speed limit shortly before the crash.


TIME Transportation

8th Body Found as Focus of Amtrak Derailment Shifts to Engineer

Philadelphia mayor called engineer "reckless and irresponsible"

Officials have accounted for all the passengers and crew aboard the Amtrak train that derailed in Philadelphia this week, after finding an eighth body amid the wreckage on Thursday morning.

The announcement came as the investigation into the crash’s cause has zeroed in on the train’s engineer, who sustained a concussion in the accident that left at least eight people dead and 200 people injured. The engineer, Brandon Bostian, has “absolutely no recollection of the incident,” his lawyer said Robert Goggin said on Good Morning America Thursday.

Investigators have determined the train was traveling at more than 100 mph when it crashed going through a curve in the tracks, where the speed limit was 50 mph.

Bostian, a 32-year-old Queens resident, was treated and released from Philadelphia’s Einstein Medical Center on Wednesday, NBC News reports. Records from the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen indicate he has worked at Amtrak since April 2009.

Bostian voluntarily gave a blood sample to authorities, as well as his cell phone, Goggin told ABC News.

In a news conference Wednesday, Robert Sumwalt, a member of the National Transportation Safety Board, said the train’s engineer had applied the brakes at about the time it was entering a left-hand curve and that preliminary data showed it was traveling at 106 mph, more than twice the speed limit for that section of track. “You’re supposed to enter the curve at 50 miles per hour,” he told reporters near the scene.

The Amtrak Northeast Regional Train 188, which was carrying 238 passengers and five crew members to New York City, derailed near the site of a 1943 accident in that left dozens dead. Sumwalt, who had earlier said his team had not yet met with the engineer, said data recorders from the train would be further analyzed in Washington, D.C., where the train originated Tuesday, and that he expected investigators to remain at the site for about a week.

On Wednesday evening, with excessive speed rising as an apparent main factor in the derailment, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter lashed out against the engineer.

“Clearly he was reckless and irresponsible in his actions” he told CNN. “I don’t know what was going on with him. I don’t know what was going on in the cab, but there’s really no excuse that could be offered, literally, unless he had a heart attack.”

Sumwalt took a more cautious approach in commenting on the engineer, saying “we want to get to the facts before we start making judgments.”

TIME celebrities

How Paul Walker’s Brother Aims to Carry on His Legacy

Cody Walker unveils a giant mosaic plaque dedicated to his late brother, American actor Paul Walker, at United Cinemas in Craigieburn, New South Wales
Tony Gough—Newspix/Getty Images Cody Walker unveils a giant mosaic plaque dedicated to his late brother, American actor Paul Walker, at United Cinemas in Craigieburn, New South Wales, on April 12, 2015.

The Fast and Furious star died in a 2013 car wreck

The younger brother of late actor Paul Walker told People in a recent interview that he hopes to continue his brother’s legacy of philanthropy—something the Fast and Furious star was passionate about, but wasn’t necessarily known for.

Walker died in a car crash in November 2013 when he was 40 years old, leaving behind not just family, friends and fans, but a humanitarian relief organization that he had founded in the wake of the devastating earthquake in Haiti in 2010. Now, Cody Walker aims to follow in his footsteps, taking on the role of brand manager at Reach Out Worldwide, or ROWW.

“Aside from acting, his daughter and ROWW were the most important things in his life, hands down,” the 26-year-old said. “”He was very proud of ROWW and the incredible people he had surrounded himself to make up that team. I’m just doing the best that I can to keep his vision consistent.”

Read more at People.

TIME celebrities

Mad Max‘s Tom Hardy Opens Up About Struggles With Addiction

Actor Tom Hardy arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere of "Mad Max: Fury Road" at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on May 7, 2015 in Hollywood.
Jon Kopaloff—FilmMagic/Getty Images Actor Tom Hardy arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere of "Mad Max: Fury Road" at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on May 7, 2015 in Hollywood.

“I would have sold my mom for a rock of crack"

Actor Tom Hardy says he’s lucky to be alive.

The Mad Max: Fury Road star admitted in a recent interview with Essentials magazine that his drug problem during his 20s had gotten so bad that he would have given up a family member for some. “I would have sold my mom for a rock of crack,” Hardy said. “I am fu-king lucky to be here.”

The 37-year-old actor said he was a “shameful suburban statistic,” struggling with alcohol and drugs before sobering up in 2003. “I was told very clearly, ‘you go down that road, Tom, you won’t come back. That’s it. All you need to know.'”

Hardy, who played Bane in the The Dark Knight Rises, plays Max Rockatansky in the Mad Max flick that hits theaters on Friday.

[Yahoo New Zealand]

TIME White House

Obama Pressed on How He Talks to Black Community

Barack Obama
Pablo Martinez Monsivais—AP President Barack Obama speaks at the Catholic-Evangelical Leadership Summit on Overcoming Poverty at Georgetown University in Washington, Tuesday, May 12, 2015.

Obama responds to critique that his rhetoric is often harsher when he's addressing an all-black audience

President Obama has been known to hold black audiences to a high standard, arguing that they need to do more to keep families together and educate their children. It’s a line that has rankled some in the black community, who note that he does not make the same case for white families in poverty.

“It is hard to avoid the conclusion that this White House has one way of addressing the social ills that afflict black people—and particularly black youth—and another way of addressing everyone else,” wrote Ta-Nehisi Coates in a much-discussed essay in The Atlantic in 2013 . “I would have a hard time imagining the president telling the women of Barnard that ‘there’s no longer room for any excuses’—as though they were in the business of making them. Barack Obama is, indeed, the president of ‘all America,’ but he also is singularly the scold of ‘black America.’”

On Tuesday, President Obama was pressed on the question in person at a Catholic-Evangelical leadership summit on poverty in Washington, and he did not back down, using the same speeches at the historically black Morehouse College in Atlanta and the all-female Barnard College in New York Coates referenced as examples.

“It’s true that if I’m giving a commencement at Morehouse I will have a conversation with young black men about taking responsibility as fathers that I probably will not have with the women of Barnard,” Obama said. “And I make no apologies for that. And this reason is because I am a black man who grew up without a father and I know the cost that I paid for that. And I also know that I have the capacity to break that cycle, and as a consequence, I think my daughters are better off.”

During a panel discussion on poverty at Georgetown University, Obama reiterated parts of his argument, which he has also made in recent discussions about unrest in Baltimore and the launch of a My Brother’s Keeper initiative aimed at young minority men, though he also noted the role that institutional racism played.

“In some ways, part of what’s changed is that those biases or those restrictions on who had access to resources that allowed them to climb out of poverty … all those things were foreclosed to a big chunk of the minority population over decades,” he said. “Over time families frayed, men who could not get jobs left, mother’s who are single are not able to read as much to their kids.”

He added, “All that was happening 40 years ago to African Americans and now what we’re seeing is those same trends have accelerated and they’re spreading to the broader community.”

TIME White House

White House Baby Boom Highlights Obama Policy Agenda

Barack Obama
Susan Walsh—AP President Barack Obama holds a baby as he greets guests attending an event at the White House in Washington on April 16, 2015.

As the Administration pushes family-friendly policies, it has worked to be more family-friendly too

During a recent speech on his plans to get paid work leave for all new parents, President Obama veered off-script. “There have been a lot of babies in the White House lately,” he said. “See, we have another one coming right here, right in the front row.”

He was referring to director of the White House Office of Public Engagement Paulette Aniskoff, who is due in July. The others were not far out of sight. Director of Communications Jen Psaki is also due this summer, and Legislative Affairs Director Katie Fallon had twins in April and is currently on three months of maternity leave. Press Secretary Josh Earnest’s son was born several weeks before he took the helm in the White House briefing room in 2014, and at least three other senior officials, including Senior Advisor Brian Deese, have babies under age three at home.

It is a turnabout for a building better known as the wrecker of marriages and maker of absentee parents. Of the many perks of a job in the White House, a family-friendly workplace has never been one of them. The work day begins before dawn, and rarely ends until long after toddlers have gone to bed. The stress is relentless, the urgent emails come at all hours and childcare is not provided on premises. “No matter how much the president tries,” warned Rahm Emanuel, Obama’s first chief of staff, “the White House is brutal on family life.”

But in recent months, Obama, who likes to joke with pregnant women by offering the services of his ever-present doctor, has made helping parents in the workplace a major policy focus, talking about the “gut-wrenching choice between a paycheck and a sick kid at home.” He has called for a new federal standard that mandates up to a week of paid sick leave for employees of businesses with more than 15 employees, and offers unpaid of paid sick leave at smaller businesses. He also has pushed for state programs that would help compensate employees who take unpaid medical leave and expanded paid leave programs for federal employees.

Now as his once-youthful staff and their partners age to upper bounds of their childbearing years, the President and his team have been faced in real time with the question of whether they can offer their employees more than the painful choice of either doing their job or seeing their newborn children. For Earnest, whose predecessor Robert Gibbs left the White House saying he wanted to spend more time with his son, it is all about scheduling. Earnest tries to set aside one weeknight when he can get home to put to sleep his 8-month-old boy. “I’m spending time at night working on my BlackBerry while my wife is cooking dinner,” Earnest says. “Walker has gone a couple of times now to get shots. Both times I’ve taken an hour and a half off in the afternoon to go to the appointment.”

Other small allowances have been made. The White House campus has nursing rooms, and the Navy mess hall has learned to be responsive to the new demands of pregnancy. “I’ve been really wanting cinnamon toast all the time lately, which isn’t on the menu, but they make it every morning,” explains Aniskoff, who is due in July. Chief of Staff Denis McDonough moved Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings meetings to earlier in the day to give senior staffers more flexibility in their schedules.

The West Wing has also embraced the task of covering for their colleagues after birth. Just like Fallon, both Psaki and Aniskoff will get to take 12 weeks of paid leave after their births. When she was offered her new job earlier this year, Psaki warned the chief of staff that she had recently become pregnant, and worried that fact could hurt her chances. “He didn’t skip a beat,” Psaki recalls. “He said, ‘this is a family friendly White House.”

That’s a far cry from the environment Valerie Jarrett, one of the president’s closest advisers, remembers in the 1980s, when she gave birth to her daughter while working at a law firm. “I didn’t tell anyone I was pregnant until I was showing and then I tried to not ever talk about the fact I was pregnant,” Jarrett recalls. “Where as the women who are [in the White House] now, we talk about it all the time.”

Correction: The original version of this story misstated the timing of Earnest’s son’s birth. He was born several weeks after his father took the job as press secretary.

TIME viral

The World of Warcraft Leeroy Jenkins Meme is 10 Years Old

An advertisement for the ''World of Warcraft'' game, produced by Activision Blizzard Inc., a video-game publishing unit of Vivendi SA, is displayed at a store in Paris, France
Fabrice Dimier—Bloomberg/Getty Images An advertisement for the ''World of Warcraft'' game, produced by Activision Blizzard Inc., a video-game publishing unit of Vivendi SA, is displayed at a store in Paris, France, on May 12, 2012.

The gaming meme went viral after the video was uploaded in 2005

Forty-three million YouTube hits later, the legendary World of Warcraft meme Leeroy Jenkins is now 10 years old.

The meme evolved from a video of a group of WoW players planning a raid when one player, known as Leeroy Jenkins, went rogue and spoiled the raid. The video, uploaded in May 2005, went viral before “going viral” was really even a thing. It was alluded to on TV shows including My Name is Earl and in movies like Wreck-it-Ralph. There were spinoffs on YouTube and a hit on South Park.

And yet, one question remains—was the whole thing staged?

According to the real-life Leeroy, Ben Schultz, it’s up to the viewer to decide.

Check out the video below (warning: video contains strong language).

Learn more at Know Your Meme.

TIME faith

Fewer Americans Calling Themselves Christians, Survey Finds

USA, Vermont, Sharon, Sharon Congregational Church
Getty Images

Trend is driven by Millennials, around one third of whom claim to be religiously unaffiliated

The share of Americans calling themselves Christians has dropped sharply in recent years, according to a new Pew Research Center survey — while the population of religiously unaffiliated adults has risen.

Though more Christians call America home than any other country, the percentage of American adults identifying as Christians has fallen from 78.4% in 2007 to about 70.6%. Meanwhile, over one in five (22.8%) say they are unaffiliated with any faith, a 6.7% percentage point jump since 2007.

Pew finds the Millennial generation is leading the decline in religious affiliation, though adults of all ages and across all demographic groups are steering away from Christianity. About 36% of Americans between 18 and 24 claim to be religiously unaffiliated, along with some 34% of Americans between 24 and 33.

Protestants and Catholics experienced the greatest drop in population, according to the survey, with populations declining respectively by 5 and 3 million people. There has, however, been a bump in the number of Evangelical Christians in the U.S.—Pew estimates that population has grown by 2 million since 2007.

The survey is Pew’s second to examine the religious landscape of America. The survey seeks to fill a gap left by the Census, which does not question Americans’ religious affiliation. A little over 35,000 adults were interviewed for the survey, which has a margin of error of 0.6 percentage points.

TIME Football

Tom Brady’s Agent Says Four-Game Suspension ‘Ridiculous’

“There is no evidence that Tom directed footballs be set at pressures below the allowable limits," Yee said Monday

The agent of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has said it was “ridiculous” for the National Football League to hand his client a four-game suspension over the Deflategate scandal.

In a statement released late Monday, Don Yee said the punishment has “no legitimate basis.” Yee says Brady will appeal the ruling, handed down after a report authored by attorney Ted Wells found it was “more probable than not” the quarterback had some knowledge that game balls had been tampered with before they reached the field in January’s AFC championship game against the Indianapolis Colts.

“In my opinion, this outcome was pre-determined; there was no fairness in the Wells investigation whatsoever,” Yee said in a statement. “There is no evidence that Tom directed footballs be set at pressures below the allowable limits.”

Yee adds, “We will appeal, and if the hearing officer is completely independent and neutral, I am very confident the Wells Report will be exposed as an incredibly frail exercise in fact-finding and logic. “

The NFL argues the punishment was justified by Brady’s failure to submit text messages and emails during the ‘Deflategate’ investigation. “Your actions as set forth in the report clearly constitute conduct detrimental to the integrity of and public confidence in the game of professional football,” NFL executive vice president Troy Vincent wrote to Brady, according to NBC Sports.

The Patriots also face a $1 million fine for the scandal.

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