This week’s links come with a little bit of everything. Check them out!
A German newspaper reports the case of an atheist coma patient who was given the “extreme unction” by a priest, and, upon recovery and finding out about this, sued the hospital for disrespecting his freedom of conscience. The Supreme Court agreed with him and a lower court will now decide if he’ll get the 21,000 euro he’s asking for compensation for “immaterial damages”.
ISRAEL (From criticaldragon1177)
Commenting on a bill in parliament that seeks to extend civil partnerships to same-sex couples, president Shimon Peres publicly backed marriage rights for same-sex couples.
An Iraqi refugee is fighting for basic rights for secular humanists around the world.
The oldest hominid DNA found to date raises intriguing questions about hominid populations. The mitochondrial DNA from the 400,000 year-old bones is, contrary to what was expected, closer to Denisovians than to Neanderthals, from which they separated 700,000 years ago.
AUSTRALIA (From Psyche)
The Lower House of New South Wales voted in favor of Zoe’s Law, which gives personhood to fetuses over 20 weeks. The name Zoe’s Law comes from a case where a 8-month-pregnant woman was hit by a car and lost the baby, but the driver could not be charged with murder. People in favor of this law say it does not interfere with reproductive rights of women, yet there are concerns that the law does not ensure the protection of those rights. (Background info here).
In the state of Rio Grande do Sul, victims of domestic violence have a patrol squad dedicated exclusively to protecting them. The Patrulha Maria da Penha responds to emergencies, informs women of their rights and the support networks available.
AUSTRALIA (From Jack99)
The 2012 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) is out and lots of countries are lamenting the state of their education. In this article, Australians are not too happy with their results on math and reading skills. The article includes an interactive map where you can see how your country ranked.
Featrued image from MSF FILMS/Javier Trueba at Museo de la Evolución Humana