Friday 19 January 2018

In brief: Israel turns down Wagner concert

Tel Aviv University has refused to host the first Wagner concert in Israel since the state's foundation, on the grounds that it would "deeply hurt the feelings" of the public, including Holocaust survivors.

The German, who openly expressed anti-Semitic views and was Hitler's favourite composer, was to have been the subject of a day of music and discussion.

A football league you can swear by

One of the world's oldest football leagues based in England, is to introduce "secret shoppers" to spy on officials and players who swear during games, its chairman said.

The Northern League, formed in 1889, could then name and shame the worst offending clubs and provide financial bonuses for those who keep it clean.

New York eases up on marijuana law

The public possession of a small amount of marijuana may soon elicit little more than a slap on the wrist in New York under a partial decriminalisation plan unveiled this week by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The draft law, which is backed by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, is partly a response to concerns that the existing law, which requires an arrest and the filing of a criminal misdemeanour charge, disproportionately affects young Hispanics and blacks.

'Dull' village links with 'Boring' town

Residents of a small village called Dull are hoping to become a "sister community" with the US town of Boring this week.

Dull, in Perthshire, and Boring forged an unlikely link when Elizabeth Leighton, who lives in Aberfeldy, near the Scottish village, passed through Boring, Oregon, on a cycling holiday in the US and phoned her friend Emma Burtles in Dull with an idea to link the two communities. Differences in the towns, such as population, mean they cannot be twinned, but officials in Boring are set to vote on whether they can be officially linked in some way.

Breast is best but mothers struggle

Two thirds of new mothers who intended to breastfeed exclusively for several months or more didn't meet their own goals in a new study.

Researchers at the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention found that several factors influenced whether mothers of newborns would stick to their plan to breastfeed only, including actions by hospital staff in the days after delivery.

Irish Independent

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