TIME ebola

Facebook Wants You to Help Fight Ebola

Facebook

Over the next week, a donation prompt will appear atop your News Feed

Facebook announced a new initiative on Thursday that it hopes will encourage its massive user base to donate and help tackle the worst Ebola outbreak on record.

Over the next week, the social network said in a blog post, users will see a message at the top of News Feeds that will ask for donations to organizations like the International Medical Corps, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and Save the Children. All donations will go directly to the charities.

Beyond that, Facebook is working with UNICEF to spread key information about Ebola symptoms and treatment and collaborating with NetHope in order to provide emergency voice and data services for health and aid workers in the three hardest-hit countries: Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.

The Ebola response in West Africa has seen a smaller flow of individual charitable donations than other recent relief efforts. An analysis by the CNNMoney last month found that the American Red Cross had raised $486 million in the wake of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, while it had raised just $100,000 in individual donations toward combatting Ebola, aside from a $2.8 million foundation contribution.

Philanthropists, meanwhile, have represented the largest source of private donations, including a $100 million pledge from Microsoft’s Paul Allen and a $25 million donation from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg.

TIME ebola

U.S. Clinic in Liberia Will Treat Doctors and Nurses Who Contract Ebola

U.S. Air Force personnel put up tents to house a 25-bed U.S.-built hospital for sick Liberian health workers as part in Operation United Assistance on Oct. 9, 2014 in Monrovia, Liberia.
U.S. Air Force personnel put up tents to house a 25-bed U.S.-built hospital for sick Liberian health workers as part in Operation United Assistance on Oct. 9, 2014 in Monrovia, Liberia. John Moore—Getty Images

Seventy uniformed officers to specifically care for doctors and nurses

Uniformed American officers are due to open and staff a field clinic for Ebola patients outside the Liberian capital of Monrovia this coming weekend, marking the United States’ latest bid to help bring the regional outbreak under control.

President Barack Obama had previously said none of the roughly 4,000 American troops deployed to Liberia would care for patients suffering from Ebola. But, USA Today reports, 70 uniformed government personnel from the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, of the Department of Health and Human Services, will be the first to do so and specifically treat health care workers who contract the deadly virus.

“They have to feel secure that there will be a high level of care provided if they do fall ill of Ebola,” Rear Adm. Scott Giberson, acting U.S. deputy surgeon general, said in the report, adding that the volunteers were among some 1,700 members who had expressed a willingness to be deployed.

The World Health Organization said Wednesday that at least 310 health care workers have died in the West Africa outbreak that has killed more than 4,800 people this year. That same day, Obama announced he would ask Congress for $6.2 million to fight Ebola.

[USA Today]

TIME Israel

Provocative Israeli Cartoon on Deteriorating Relations With U.S. Evokes 9/11

It was published days after a White House official reportedly called Netanyahu "chickens--t"

A cartoon published Thursday by the left-leaning Israeli daily Haaretz has sparked controversy for its blunt attempt to depict deteriorating relations between conservative Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. President Barack Obama.

The cartoon shows Netanyahu flying an airplane aimed at a tall building topped with an American flag, which resembles one of the Twin Towers that were attacked on Sept. 11, 2001.

The cartoonist, Amos Biderman, told the Times of Israel that the image was intended to imply that Netanyahu was leading to “a disaster in Israel-U.S. relations on the scale of 9/11.” But it has drawn criticism in the U.S. and in Israel, with Vox writing that “it so breaches the very basics of good taste that it is astounding.”

Relations between Netanyahu and the White House have been notoriously poor, and the Israeli leader moved earlier this week to accelerate planning for new settler homes in East Jerusalem despite the Obama Administration’s opposition. On Tuesday, the Atlantic quoted one unnamed White House official calling Netanyahu “chickens–t.”

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest later said the official’s comment did not “accurately reflect at all” the administration’s view about Israel.

Read next: Sweden Becomes the First E.U. Member to Recognize a Palestinian State

TIME Education

Science Teachers Need Training Before Fiery Chemistry Displays, Panel Says

After three fires in the last two months

A federal board seeking to improve safety in science classrooms recommended Thursday that teachers undergo more training before performing fiery, explosive chemical experiments beloved of high schoolers.

After investigating three fires in the last two months, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board found that the teachers lacked safety training, used too much of the flammable chemicals, and did not put up see-through safety barriers between themselves and their pupils.

The three incidents, in Nevada, Colorado and Illinois, badly injured students and teachers but did not lead to any deaths. At the Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum in Reno, 13 people received burns. All three cases involved demonstrations of flames using methanol.

The panel’s chairperson, Rafael Moure-Eraso, said it was not attempting to take the fun out of the classroom. “When performed safely these kinds of demonstrations can engage students and visitors and stimulate their interest in science,” he said. “But methanol… is classified as a highly flammable liquid, and users should adopt strict safety controls.”

TIME People

Former Boston Mayor Thomas Menino Dies at 71

Boston mayor Thomas M. Menino
Boston mayor Thomas M. Menino W. Marc Bernsau—Boston Business Journal

Menino was the city's longest-serving mayor, who led for more than two decades

Thomas M. Menino, the beloved former mayor of Boston who led the city for more than two decades, died Thursday. He was 71, and his passing was confirmed in a statement on his Facebook page.

Menino, who served five terms in office to become the city’s longest-serving mayor, was diagnosed with advanced-stage cancer soon after stepping down earlier this year. Last week, Menino announced that he would stop chemotherapy treatment — and suspend a tour to promote his book Mayor for a New America — to spend more time with his family and friends.

“At just after 9:00am this morning the Honorable Thomas M. Menino passed into eternal rest after a courageous battle with cancer,” the statement said. “He was surrounded by his devoted wife Angela, loving family and friends. Mayor Menino, the longest serving Mayor of the City of Boston, led our city through a transformation of neighborhood resurgence and historic growth — leaving the job he loved, serving the city and people he loved this past January. We ask that you respect the families’ privacy during this time and arrangements for services will be announced soon.”

Menino is credited with overseeing the ascent of Boston’s skyline and leading the city through economic downturns to become a hub for business and technology. The city’s first mayor of Italian descent, according to the Boston Globe, Menino’s old-school political style won him the support of the city, leaving office with an approval rating of nearly 80%. A 2008 Globe poll found that more than half of the Boston respondents said they had met him personally.

Read TIME’s 2013 profile of Menino here: The Last of the Big-City Bosses

TIME movies

Court Rules Company Doesn’t Have the Rights to Spider-Man, X-Men

2014 Alamo City Comic Con - Day 1
Comic book writer Stan Lee attends day one of the Alamo City Comic Con at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center on September 26, 2014 in San Antonio, Texas. Rick Kern—WireImage

The company's claims to Lee's characters, which include Spider-Man and the X-Men, are "simply implausible"

The company co-founded by but long since unaffiliated with comic book tycoon Stan Lee does not own the rights to his most famous characters, an appeals court ruled Wednesday.

The 9th Circuit ruled that a federal judge in Los Angeles appropriately dismissed the case in 2012, saying that the Colorado-based company Stan Lee Media Inc. never demonstrated that Lee had given it the rights to his characters.

SLMI was founded in 1998 but declared bankruptcy in 2001. Its shareholders are asserting their claim over Lee’s characters.

“Give the significant value of these franchise, SLMI’s failure to publicize, protect, or exploit its right to profit from the characters establishes that these claims are simply implausible,” the court said.

TIME Military

Pentagon to Boost Support for Troops Exposed to Chemical Agents

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U.S. soldiers don chemical warfare gear. Stocktrek Images—Getty Images/Stocktrek Images

After an investigation found fault in the military's handling of claims

The Pentagon will provide long-term health monitoring for American service members and veterans who were exposed to chemical agents in Iraq, according to a report Thursday, in a move that comes after an investigation earlier this month found fault in how the military responded to troops’ claims.

The New York Times reports that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel was said to have ordered a review into the military’s handling of troops who came forward about their exposure following its explosive investigation that found at least 17 U.S. service members had been exposed to abandoned mustard and nerve agents dating back to the regime of Saddam Hussein.

Eight new cases have emerged since the report was published in mid-October, the Times said Thursday, and the U.S. government has neither released a list of those incidents, nor of the abandoned chemical weapons found in Iraq.

[New York Times]

TIME celebrities

Bill Maher Will Be UC Berkeley’s Commencement Speaker Despite Student Protest

Celebrities Visit "Late Show With David Letterman" - September 8, 2014
Television personality Bill Maher enters the "Late Show With David Letterman" taping at the Ed Sullivan Theater on September 8. Ray Tamarra—WireImage

School says it's not "an endorsement of any of Mr. Maher’s prior statements"

The University of California, Berkeley says it will not rescind an invitation to comedian Bill Maher to be the school’s commencement speaker, despite a student vote to disinvite him.

The student committee in charge of the speaker selection process voted to rescind the HBO host’s invitation on Tuesday amid growing criticism of Maher’s views on religion and particularly Islam. More than 4,000 people have signed a petition on Change.org to cancel Maher’s December commencement speech.

But on Wednesday, the university released a statement saying it will not accept the student vote.

“The UC Berkeley administration cannot and will not accept this decision, which appears to have been based solely on Mr. Maher’s opinions and beliefs, which he conveyed through constitutionally protected speech,” the school said. “It should be noted that this decision does not constitute an endorsement of any of Mr. Maher’s prior statements: indeed, the administration’s position on Mr. Maher’s opinions and perspectives is irrelevant in this context, since we fully respect and support his right to express them.”

Maher’s response to the controversy? You’ll have to watch the show:

Read next: Watch Ben Affleck and Bill Maher Argue About Islam

TIME Television

Watch Anita Sarkeesian School Stephen Colbert on GamerGate

She even declares Colbert a feminist

The maker of a feminist video game who has faced vitriol from some members of the “GamerGate” online movement stopped by The Colbert Report on Wednesday and handily schooled the host’s fake gamer persona.

“I’m saving the princess, and I’m supposed to let the princess die? Is that what you want?” Colbert asks Anita Sarkeesian incredulously.

“Well maybe the princess shouldn’t be a damsel and she could save herself,” Sarkeesian replies, drawing cheers from women in the crowd. (“I didn’t know you brought a posse,” Colbert jokingly responds.)

The GamerGate movement, named after the Twitter hashtag that has fueled its growth, purports to challenge poor ethics in video-game journalism. But it has also unleashed a wave of sexist comments and threats against women in the overall gaming industry.

Sarkeesian, who has publicly criticized video-game culture for its portrayal of women, canceled a talk at Utah State University earlier this month after the school received an email threat of a shooting massacre. While the school considered it safe for the talk to continue, Sarkeesian decided to pull out of the event because the school was barred by state law from disallowing legal guns on campus during the event.

“They’re lashing out because we’re challenging the status quo of gaming as a male-dominated space,” Sarkeesian says. By the end of the interview, she even declares Colbert a feminist after he asks if he’s allowed — as a man — to be one.

See the full interview below:

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