Billy Joel Dons Yellow Star Of David At MSG As U.S. Neo-Nazi Activity Grows

first_imgLast night, Billy Joel returned to Madison Square Garden for the first time since the end of Phish’s Baker’s Dozen run. For his Monday performance, Billy Joel made a bold anti-Nazi statement, attaching a yellow Star of David to his lapel and the back of his blazer. The Star of David that Joel donned harkens back to the Holocaust when Nazis forced Jews to identify themselves as a lead-up to the Nazi-led concentration camps that killed six million Jews in Europe.Self-described as “culturally Jewish” and born to Jewish parents, Joel’s act was a strong statement against the rising neo-Nazi and white supremacist movements growing in the United States. In the past, Joel has gone on the record as saying that he doesn’t appreciate political messaging during concerts. In June, the famous 68-year-old musician told Rolling Stone, “I try to stay out of politics. I am a private citizen and I have a right to believe in my own political point of view, but I try not to get up on a soapbox and tell people how to think.”However, Joel’s wordless actions on Monday night were a clear change of heart, perhaps spurred by the “Unite the Right” rally of white supremacists and neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, Virginia, last weekend that left one counter-protesters dead and many others injured. The yellow Star of David that Joel donned harken back to the Holocaust— the Nazis forced Jews in Germany and Nazi-occupied territories to wear Stars of David or armbands for identification, with those who failed or refused to wear such garments facing severe punishment including death. This act of mass public identification less than one hundred years ago came ahead of the horrific mass-murder of six million Jews in Nazi concentration camps.Statement from Alexa Ray Joel, Billy Joel’s daughter [H/T People]; Cover photo: Myrna Suarez via Katie Lee’s Instagram]last_img read more

Drug-resistant gonorrhoea strain reaches NZ

first_imgDominion Post 11 June 2012A strain of gonorrhoea that appears to be mutating into a drug resistant form has reached New Zealand. The World Health Organisation has revealed that several countries, including Australia and the United Kingdom, are reporting cases of the sexually transmitted disease’s resistance to cephalosporin antibiotics – the current cure. It has now been detected in New Zealand. Clinical microbiologist Sally Roberts, from Auckland District Health Board, was the one to pick it up here and watch prevalence increase since July last year. “We’ve been seeing mutations, suggesting it is becoming less susceptible to the antibiotics. It’s clearly been introduced into New Zealand somehow.” The New Zealand cases, mainly in the gay and bisexual population of Auckland and Wellington, were of the same gonorrhoea strain on which WHO is calling for urgent action. read more

Junior Lokosa: Super Eagles’ New Boy

first_imgSuper Eagles Manager, Gernot Rohr on Monday released a provisional list of 30 players ahead of the remaining three friendly matches before the World Cup in Russia, beginning with the May 28encounter with the Congo Democratic Republic. The list came with two surprise names – Kano Pillars’ Junior Lokosa and Italian Serie A’s Crotone forward, Simeon Nwankwo. Can the duo beat the odds and make the final 23-man list to Russia? Kunle Adewale reportsJunior Lokosa has been taking the Nigerian Professional Football League  (NPFL)  by storm scoring 18 goals in 20 matches, the latest being a brace in Sunday’s 3-1 victory against Katsina United at the Sani Abacha Stadium.In a telephone chat with THISDAY, a former Nigerian international, Friday Ekpo said it would have been an injustice against the local league and indeed home-based players in the Kano Pillars striker’s name was not included in the provisional list.“It would have amounted to gross injustice if Lokosa’s name was absent from the list. The Nigerian League is still the strongest in Africa and if a player could score 18 goals with the league still a long way to go, no national team coach could ignore such a player. What he had achieved so far is not a small feat. He should indeed be celebrated,” Ekpo said.Asked if he thinks the Nigerian League top scorer could make the final 23-man list, the former Shell of Gabon midfielder reacted thus: “Why not? Every of the 30 players in the provisional list have a chance, a lot would depend on how much they are able to take their chances in the remaining friendly matches and how well they comport themselves in camp.”Ekpo, however, cautioned that the striker should not be overwhelmed by the presence of foreign professionals.“He is as good as any Nigerian striker playing abroad. The only difference is that he is playing in the home front and this is what he should have at the back of his mind and therefore gather the necessary confidence and concentrate on doing what he knows how to do best-scoring goals,” Ekpo added.Also speaking, Atlanta ’96 Olympic gold medalist, Emmanuel Babayaro, noted that the names were purely based on merit, adding that Lokosa’s call up was the biggest surprise in the list.“I think the list is okay. I am looking forward to seeing if we can finally break that last 16 hurdle and get to the quarters for the very first time. I think this is overdue and hopefully, Russia is where history will be made. I am delighted that three home-based players – Dele Ajiboye, Junior Lokosa and Ikechukwu Ezenwa – made the provisional list and my guts tell me Lokosa will make the 23-man final list. He is the surprise package for me,” Babayaro said. Born August 23, 1993, in Badagry, Lagos state, Lokosa fell in love with football at a young age which angered his parents.“It wasn’t easy because all parents want their children to go to school,” he said in an interview in March. “However, when they realised football was in my blood and they couldn’t pull it out, they had to accept it. I think today, everybody in the Lokosa family is happy.”Knowing what he wanted, he stuck to his dream of playing football. He began on the streets of Ajegunle, a Lagos community known for high poverty and crime.Football began to grow from being just a hobby to a career for Lokosa when his brother took him to a field where he began to play structured football. Soon, things started taking shape, as he got signed to play for an amateur side before catching the eye of First Bank football club.The 24-year-old centre-forward was still with Lagos-based First Bank Football club in 2017 and was “praying to God” for a better team when, “like a miracle”, he was offered the chance to join Kano Pillars.“I didn’t plan to join Kano Pillars. However, one day, I returned from training and I got a call from someone who asked if I wanted to play for Kano Pillars and I said yes.“Of course, I was praying to God for a better team to play. So it was like a miracle to me. The following day, I travelled to Kano and everything went on smoothly. I have to thank God because joining Pillars is a big lift in my career,” he recalls”.Lokosa had a debut to remember for Pillars, scoring in the match against Niger Tornadoes. His goal for Kano pillars came as no surprise to his First Bank teammate Abou, who would later “I am very happy for my pal, Lokosa. I believe in his abilities and I am not surprised he scored on his debut at Kano Pillars.“Lokosa is a lethal striker who makes goal-scoring look very simple. He plays with so much calm, yet he punishes goalkeepers. I wish him all the best and to Kano Pillars, they are lucky to have a lethal striker who will score so many goals that will make them achieve their set goals.”When Lokosa scored his 11th goal of the season, he was asked how happy he was: “I wasn’t really happy because my goal did not give the three points to my team,” he responded. It was not our intention to draw again at home but there was nothing we could do to save the situation. We still feel bad with the result but we just have to move on. That match has come and gone.”He responded in typically calm fashion when asked to respond to clamour for his invitation to the Super Eagles.“I don’t know much about that but every player wants to play for his country so my case is not different. By the grace of God, when I am invited I will do my best. However, if God says it is not yet time, there is nothing I can do about it. At the moment, I have a job in hand so I have to focus on it,” he said.Meanwhile, Kano Pillars Chairman, Tukur Babangida has confirmed that the NPFL’s leading marksman, will be off to Bulgaria to have his medical and fitness tests with Ludogorets.The administrator said he decided to set the record straight due to insinuations in the media that the player was embarking on a trial abroad.“Kano Pillars are only allowing him to go for medical and fitness tests. He is not going to have a trial.“You should know the mentality of Nigerian players once they are contacted by any European club. They and their agents will put pressure on you to allow them to go and if you say no, they will be thinking otherwise. Transfers open in July in Europe and if he cannot go in June, then he has to wait until January. He has his options but he has no guarantees that he can get a club in January depending on his performance,” he said.Another player that would also be hoping to make the cut to Russia is Crotone of Italy striker, Simeon Nwankwo.The striker scored eight goals this season.It remains to be seen how much impression the duo of Lokosa and Nwankwo would make on Rohr as the battle for Russia heats up.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more