Courtney Brosnan’s career day leads Syracuse women’s soccer to shocking tie with No. 2 Florida State

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Courtney Brosnan frantically jumped up and down, shouting “clear the ball already” to her teammates. Only one minute remained in overtime against Florida State. Brosnan had already faced 27 shots from FSU, eight of which came in overtime.But instead of displaying exhaustion, she appeared animated and lively.Defender Maddie Iozzi complied with Brosnan’s demand and booted the ball to the other end of the field. FSU’s final assault on the Orange was terminated.When the horn sounded, Brosnan leapt into the air as her teammates mobbed her. Her intense demeanor throughout the game changed as a huge smile crept across her face.Brosnan compiled a career-high 15 saves in the best performance of her career. It even reminded Syracuse head coach Phil Wheddon of Tim Howard’s performance against Belgium in the 2014 FIFA World Cup for the United States. Brosnan was nearly unbeatable, letting up just one goal in the game. It was the second-most saves in a game in program history.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSyracuse (7-5-3, 0-4-2 Atlantic Coast) faced an attacking onslaught from No. 2 Florida State (9-2-2, 3-1-2) throughout the game. Most of it was spent in the Orange’s half — save for a few counterattacks — as SU essentially parked the bus on defense, keeping all but one player in the defensive end except on counterattacks. FSU outshot the Orange 27-9 on the day, but Brosnan held the Seminoles to one goal en route to a shocking 1-1 tie.Florida State was coming off a 2-1 upset by Boston College three days earlier.“She’s been amazing for us all year,” Wheddon said. “But for her to come up big like that — especially when she’s injured — is a massive boost for us.”Jacob Greenfeld | Asst. Photo Editor Ironically in her career-best performance, Brosnan was a game-time decision after separating her shoulder Thursday against Virginia Tech.She didn’t train on Friday or Saturday. The first action she received since Thursday, according to Wheddon, was a little handling practice Saturday morning.“Since Virginia Tech, I’ve been taking care of it and icing it as much as possible,” Brosnan said. “I came out in the warm up and I just knew I was ready to play. Pain is relative but it obviously hurt throughout.”Coming into Saturday’s game, Syracuse had scored only one goal in its last four games. It took just 59 seconds for the Orange to erase that trend.Alex Lamontagne received a crisp pass from Stephanie Skilton shortly after kickoff. Despite being 30 yards away from goal, Lamontagne curved the ball high over FSU goalie Cassie Miller and into the net.But Florida State then controlled possession and relentlessly pressed forward. In the fifth minute, midfielder Megan Connolly laid a perfect cross to fellow sophomore Kaycie Tillman. Tillman booted it past Brosnan but the referee immediately ruled she was offside.Yet it seemed inevitable that one of the Seminoles’ overwhelming number of chances would succeed. Finally, in the 25th minute, Connolly pushed on a counterattack following an Eva Gordon turnover. She passed it to midfielder Elin Jensen, who settled the ball, dribbled it to her left, and rocketed it over Brosnan to tie the game up.That was the only time Florida State beat Brosnan, though.The rest of the game consisted of the same. There were repeated and relentless Seminoles attacks against the Syracuse defense. Once in a while, Syracuse conjured powerful counterattacks and got opportunities on net, but they were few and far between.“That kinda wasn’t the strategy,” Jessica Vigna said with a laugh, regarding the prospect of the team parking the bus. “But it got difficult, so especially in the second half so we were just like OK, let’s survive until the end.”“It depended on which end we were going to defend first in overtime,” Wheddon said. “We had the wind in our face for the first overtime so we just tried to weather the storm on defense, and we knew we could catch them on the counter.”Despite dropping most of its team in front of the net, Syracuse still allowed a barrage of shots Brosnan’s way.In the second overtime, Brosnan slid to her knees to knock away a one-on-one shot from Tillman with her hands. Taylor Hallmon collected the rebound, but Brosnan dove to stop another potential game-winning shot.Wheddon’s stock answer describing Brosnan’s performances this season has been that she’s one of the best goalkeepers in the ACC.He has said it at least four times now.But her outing Sunday wasn’t just another good performance. It was her best. Commentscenter_img Published on October 9, 2016 at 8:02 pm Contact Byron: [email protected]last_img read more

The Courier’s 2018 City League Football Preview—Allderdice wants to repeat as champs

first_imgYou would be hard-pressed to find anybody who expects Carrick to make the playoffs this season. And that’s no job at Carrick. The Raiders simply have not had much success in recent years. They went 1-8 last season and only averaged one touchdown per game. The offense will be led by quarterback L.J. Orbovich and running back Tayvon Greene.At University Prep, after starting last season with a losing record, U-Prep’s coach, Louis Berry, moved his best player, running back and defensive back, Dorian Jackson, to the quarterback position. After the move, U-Prep surged, going 4-1 in City League play. It speaks to the talent level of Jackson who was primarily a rusher and defense-minded player prior to the switch.A goal for U-Prep this season is to become more disruptive on defense, a potentially difficult task with the absence of Jackson in the backfield. The outcome of U-Prep’s season may depend on how well new players step up and lead the charge offensively and defensively.“Last year’s quarterback situation was a revolving door until we moved Dorian Jackson to quarterback and we made the playoffs,” Berry told the Courier. “The kids are hungry to try to get back on that big stage.” It’s no secret senior Damon Macklin will be U-Prep’s star in 2018.SMOKIN’ JIM FRAZIERHIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALLMacklin has been in the starting lineup for the last three years and Coach Berry doesn’t plan on going away from Macklin for the sake of surprise or keeping defenses honest. In fact, Macklin will likely get even more touches than he did as an underclassman.After sharing the spotlight with Jackson for a couple of seasons, Macklin will step up as the undisputed workhorse for U-Prep in 2018, and whether the Eagles can return to the City League playoffs will rely largely on how much help they can give him and how much he needs in the first place.Macklin, a 5-foot-5, 145-pound tailback who also plays cornerback, is also a great receiver and kick-return specialist. The Eagles will be led by seniors Macklin and fullback Tyrese Wright.Former NFL coach, Chuck Knox, who was born in Sewickley, earned the nickname “Ground Chuck” for the emphasis he placed on the running game. At Westinghouse, Coach Monte Robinson offers a similar philosophy. His team runs the ball 70 percent of the time. “Ground Monte,” anyone?OK, so it doesn’t have the same ring as “Ground Chuck.” But there is no denying that Robinson prefers land travel.The Bulldogs made the playoffs the last two years and will be led by middle linebacker and running back Eryk Burgess, Dana Morris and Willie Knight.Brashear has reached the final four years in a row, winning titles in 2014 and 2015, and finished as a runner-up in 2016 and 2017. The Bulls are led by All-City defensive back Jayon Blair, Keshawn Towsond and Anthony Carrington.Perry was once known for its winning football tradition, but the program hasn’t seen those heights in recent years.Coach Rod Rutherfordwas hired last year. He was part of Perry’s prior success as a quarterback for the program 20 years ago. Under coach Gus Catanese, Rutherford helped the Commodores win City League titles in 1997 and 1998. It’s tough to establish a winning culture, but Rutherford has confidence in not only his roster, but his coaching acumen. Besides former Perry coach Catanese, Rutherford spent time at Pitt, his alma mater, as the quarterbacks coach, and at IUP as the wide receivers coach.While he appreciates his time as a college coach, coaching high school has always been his true passion. And he said he’s embracing the challenge of bringing good times back to his former high school as a head coach. Perry will be led by quarterback Jakar Tucker and tight end Nate Miles.“We have some really good players at the skill positions and if our players keep the faith, we have a chance to be good,” said Rutherford. “This game is fun when you’re winning. We got to do the little things because doing the little things right leads to victory and winning is fun.” BRASHEAR’S CHEERLEADERS hope to help propel their team to a City League title in 2018. KESHAWN TOWSOND is back for another year with the Brashear Bulls. DAMON MACKLIN is prepped to lead University Prep to a star-studded season. ALLDERDICE’S CHEERLEADERS witnessed history last year, as the Dragons won their first City League title since 1967. ALLDERDICE won the City League football championship for the first time in 50 years last year in a victory over Brashear. Can they repeat as champs this year? (Photos by Courier photographer Will McBride)Just days after winning a city title last November, Allderdice coach Jerry Haslett was already thinking about this season. If he could repeat last season, he would win the City League Championship and all the accompanying glory once again.They even beat Brashear, a team that historically has given them problems in the City League Championship game.While the goal for the season remains the same as last year, Allderdice may have to find a new identity to reach it.“We have to replace both our running backs and receivers, so we are lacking in the skill department,” Haslett told the New Pittsburgh Courier. “But we return 315-pound Justin Salmon, Kenny Hardin and Andrew Williams on our offensive and defensive lines and 6-foot-5 quarterback Dalen Dugger.”On the other side of the spectrum, when Ed White took over as Carrick’s coach four years ago, he soon realized he faced a massive rebuilding job. Since then, White’s biggest concern hasn’t just been with wins and losses, but with fielding a full team that can compete on a weekly basis. Like us at @NewPghCourier on Twitter read more

Pedestrian Safety an Issue in Red Bank

first_imgRED BANK – It’s an inevitable and persistent conflict: a walking town with heavy pedestrian traffic within a community congested by cars.Red Bank, a cultural and commercial hub, has had a history of pedestrians being struck and seriously injured and, in some cases, killed by drivers as both tried to maneuver the busy roadways. The problem has been exacerbated by the onslaught of distractions that have developed over the years.“I’ve lived in Red Bank for almost 20 years,” said Amy Goldsmith, a west side homeowner and president of the West Side Community Group, an advocacy and informational organization for residents and businesses of the borough’s west side. “And we’ve had this conversation for 20 years,” referring to safety issues for the west side, especially the heavily traveled Shrewsbury Avenue.“It’s a little frustrating,” she acknowledged.“The perpetual problem is seniors can’t get across the road fast enough; lots of kids are on the streets; bicycles on sidewalks, as well as in the streets,” and “cars traveling very fast,” along with a roadway lined with legally parked vehicles, she offered. “The combination of all that creates problems.”The hectic east side downtown area has similar issues, as shoppers and employees hurry to or from lunch or coffee breaks coming up against drivers making their way through the borough’s busy thoroughfares. Add to that, valets seen driving one-way the wrong-way down streets rushing to park or pick up cars frequenting Broad Street shops and eateries. And a police department member concedes the issue is often that neither is paying enough attention to what the other is doing, creating a situation that can be precarious.“It’s a shift in what people are doing and thinking while out there in the roadway,” for both drivers and those walking, observed Sgt. Beau Broadley, supervisor of the police department’s traffic safety division.Broadley did acknowledge, “When there is interaction between pedestrians and motor vehicles…the incident of injury is pretty high.”That being said, Broadley reviewed department data and noted that in 2010 there were two pedestrian fatalities from collisions with vehicles and none since. But as recently as last fall, an elderly woman was struck by a delivery van while crossing Newman Springs Road with her 4-year-old great-grandchild. The 84-year-old woman was seriously injured and the child suffered non-life threatening injuries, police said at the time. In that case, Broadley said the pedestrians crossed in the middle of the block and not in a designated crosswalk.There have been “several” other collisions between pedestrians and vehicles but, Broadley said, “nothing rising to the level of serious injuries.”Despite those cases, Broadley believes things have improved on that front.The reasons are in part that the police since 2009 have been receiving a state Division of Highway Traffic Safety grant, covering the cost of overtime and increased activity. That grant is used by the department to have undercover officers in plain-clothes walk in crosswalks and for those drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians or who are speeding. That undercover officer notifies another officer in a nearby patrol vehicle to intercept the driver and issue warnings and/or summons.Under state law, drivers are required to yield to pedestrians crossing the street in all cases. And every intersection is a crosswalk, whether it is striped or not, Broadley explained.In part, “The problem is that we have a shift in the mentality of pedestrians,” Broadley maintained, with pedestrians oftentimes just assuming vehicles will stop. “But that’s only if the driver sees you,” he stressed.“We’ve had several instances where the pedestrians themselves are just not paying attention,” as they walk into traffic talking or texting on cell phones. Along with drivers, Broadley explained, this department initiative has stopped those walking across the street; with officers giving literatures and lectures about being aware of surroundings and stressing they should be crossing at intersections. “Just to inform them it’s their responsibility to make sure the roadway is clear before they step out there,” he said.Another effort has Broadley visiting the borough Senior Center and schools to offer lectures on traffic safety. “We’re trying to change the mind set a little bit,” he said.Traffic safety is a “top initiative of the whole county (government), the engineering department, the freeholders,” for the whole county, insisted Freeholder Thomas Arnone.The Monmouth County officials are responsible for county roads—in Red Bank that involves Shrewsbury Avenue, West Front Street and Newman Springs Road; and Arnone said county representatives are always willing to work with local officials to try and accommodate their requests for traffic improvements—as long as funding can be sought.But it is the locals’ responsibility to make the request. Red Bank has not made recent requests to address any safety issues on county roads, Arnone said.He acknowledged there is a large population that walks here and noted “The businesses are flourishing; there are a lot of businesses in a condensed area.“Which means only one thing: a lot of traffic,” he said. And as such, county officials are “looking at every measure, considering every recommendation of the municipality…and act accordingly to their requests,” he said.In 2011 based on conversations with borough officials who were in discussions with representatives of Riverview Medical Center, the county undertook a $600,000 project for safety measures for Front Street from English Plaza, east to about Washington Street, in the vicinity of the hospital. Those measures included a pedestrian-activated flashing light for those looking to cross Front Street (an exceptionally well-traveled road that has been the site of collisions with pedestrians, including a fatality in 2006); bump-out curbing; the installation of new brick-colored crosswalks; and a slightly elevated walkway in the crosswalks, for drivers to better see those walking.Those measures, instituted with the input of medical center representatives, “have greatly reduced the issues over there,” on Front Street, Broadley said.County engineers have taken measures on portions of Shrewsbury Avenue, as well, Arnone remembered. Done in stages over a couple of years, it involved restriping crosswalks, installing curbing and a new traffic light at the Drs. James Parker Boulevard intersection, along with additional signage.Mayor Pasquale Menna was not immediately available to comment for this story. But in the past, he has told The Two River Times there have been additional efforts, with the help of state Senator Jennifer Beck (R-11), a borough resident, to convince state transportation officials of the need of additional safety measure on some state-controlled borough roadways. There is talk of addressing a particularly problematic crosswalk on Riverside Avenue, just north of Maple Avenue, and frequently used by senior citizens; asking the state to consider a traffic light or other traffic control at the Riverside Avenue and Bodman Place, just south of the state Highway 35 north interchange that has long been a traffic problem, the mayor had said; and addressing the Broad Street/Pinckney Road area, where traffic can snarl and pedestrians can have difficulty crossing.Despite some steps taken in her neighborhood, “it remains treacherous,” along Shrewsbury Avenue, in large part because of fast moving traffic, using the roadway as an alternative through the borough, Goldsmith said. She believes additional signage may help, possibly bump-outs, but more police enforcement may be the best remedy, she added.“The best thing is a shared responsibility,” for everybody involved, Broadley offered. “Everything works best when everybody is paying attention.”Robert Abatemarco, Red Bank Catholic High School principal, thought his students were pretty safe, even as many cross busy Broad and Maple Streets a couple of times a week. And the reason is decidedly old school, he maintained: the long-experienced human crossing guards there every school day.“There is a familiarity,” he said. “I think the level of safety is enhanced by the relationship of the guards and the kids. The kids know the guards and listen to them.”last_img read more

Soccer Saturday marks official opening for Nelson Youth Soccer

first_imgNelson Youth Soccer runs from April to June before taking the summer off.The association returns to the pitch in September before concluding the year with playoffs in early October.Rep teams are busy attending tournaments before gearing up for the Kootenay Provincial B Cup playoffs in June.The BC Soccer Provincial B Cup Boy’s tournament is July 4-7 in Prince George.The girl’s event is the same time in North Vancouver. Nelson Youth Soccer officiall kicked off its 2013 outdoor season with Soccer Saturday at the Lakeside Pitch.House teams from the younger divisions took over the fields for opening week games.last_img read more

School District 60 looks to deal with teacher shortage for rural schools

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – School District 60 is currently facing a teacher shortage at some schools within the District.According to Superintendent Dave Sloan, as they look ahead to a new school year, a number of SD 60 schools are facing a teacher shortage with Buick Creek being at the top of the list.“The District as a whole has a challenge in staffing some of our more rural postings. Any of our rural schools, over the past few years, had a bit of a challenge in terms of being fully staffed and this year, Buick Creek seems to be one of our more significant challenges.”- Advertisement -Sloan says the Board has advised the community that they are working on a contingency plan to hire a teacher in order to avoid transferring Buick students to another school.“We had advised the community that we were creating a contingency plan to ensure that the children would have a teacher in front of them. If we’re unsuccessful at hiring an adequate professional staff for the Buick Creek School, that means those 17 students would have a choice of attending Prespatou or Upper Pine.”In order to deal with the shortage, the District has put out a nation-wide advertising campaign and a provincial bulletin with hopes of attracting potential teachers to work and live within Peace River North.Advertisement Sloan says the School District’s Human Resource Department will continue to work this summer on finding enough teachers and meeting the needs of the students.last_img read more

Redknapp wary of Leicester’s pace and feels Brighton could emerge as challengers

first_imgQPR boss Harry Redknapp insists Leicester will be formidable opponents on Saturday despite their recent results.The Foxes, third in the Championship, face the leaders having drawn one and lost two of their last three league matches.But the reports Redknapp received on those games warned him to expect a tough challenge against Nigel Pearson’s team.He said: “Leicester are flying. They’re a good side and Nigel Pearson has done a great job. We’ve watched them and they’ve got pace and look a really good outfit.“They’ve had difficult games; Nottingham Forest and also Brighton, who are a team that when everyone’s fit could challenge. But Leicester will be there.“We’ve got some tough games coming up. Leicester, Forest and Watford are all interesting fixtures.”See also:Rangers midfielder rates Leicester, Nottingham Forest and Watford The goal that gave QPR victory over Leicester on their way to promotionFollow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

New T. Rex Found; Best-Ever Skull Unveiled

first_imgNational Geographic News has reported the excavation of a possibly complete Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton at a “secret location,” a private ranch, in Montana.  The curious can monitor the interactive dig at Unearthing T. Rex.    The Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh has finally unveiled Samson, the best preserved skull of a Tyrannosaurus Rex, reports MSNBC News.  The article says that this skull, discovered in South Dakota in 1992, “may challenge scientific beliefs about the dinosaur,” but does not elaborate.  Maybe that’s because museum curator Chris Beard leans toward the interpretation that T. Rex was not a fearsome predator chasing jeeps, but a timid, opportunistic scavenger (see Carnegie Magazine).Tomorrow’s students may laugh at Jurassic Park like today’s laugh at old Godzilla movies: scary, but hokey.(Visited 11 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Birds and Their Evolution (or Design)

first_img(Visited 23 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Several recent science papers try to find evolution in bird brains, genes, and behaviors.  Do they succeed?Sexual selection conundrums:  Sexual selection seems to work except when it doesn’t.  That’s the apparent observation from two articles, one on Science Daily that claims shorebirds choose looks over brains, and one on Live Science that shocks readers with the news that peahens don’t pay much attention to the elaborate tail feathers of peacocks.  This seems to contradict a classic case of sexual selection.  Sure enough, tiny video cameras on peahens followed their gaze and found that they tended to focus below the neck, a Purdue biologist found: “The males put on this huge display, and females seem to look at only a small portion of it.”  What’s a male to do?  Neither article mentioned whether sexual selection matters in species like crows that show virtually no sexual dimorphism.Chicks vs mice:  A study in PNAS tried to find how much divergence and convergence there is in the expression of brain genes between chickens and mice.  The authors claim that their study “potentially resolves the complex relationship between developmental homology and functional characteristics on the molecular level and settles long-standing evolutionary debates,” but the actual results were mixed.  The authors found some surprising examples of convergent evolution (homoplasy) – surprising given “very different developmental trajectories” of birds and mammals.  They admitted their limited data set could have led to different results.  As a result, their conclusions were tentative, requiring further study:Our results suggest that the pallium has undergone major transcriptomic reorganization, with traces of both molecular homoplasy and homology …. These results do not imply that there is no homology among other pallial sectors, only that homology is not a dominant factor in their adult gene expression patterns. Homology might have a greater impact on pallial gene expression if we had studied a greater number of smaller regions or even individual cells….  Considering these results, subsequent investigations into the evolution of the neocortex should complement studies of homology based on cell lineage with multiple levels of information in various taxa toward a holistic understanding of how its molecular programs were repurposed, resulting in such cognitive convergence.Cockatoo puzzle solving:  Speaking of bird brains, cockatoos can perform intelligence tests on spatial and navigational skills as well as toddlers, and sometimes better than great apes, according to new experiments reported on Science Daily.Darwin’s finches again:  A new book is out about Darwin’s finches – not so much about the birds, but about David Lack, the “father of evolutionary ecology,” who spent a lot of time trying to defend Darwin’s views about them.  Ben C. Sheldon liked Ted Anderson’s book in his review for Nature.  Some readers might be surprised to find out that Lack did more work than Darwin:Charles Darwin had remarkably little to say about how the birds that bear his name — Darwin’s finches — came to have such a variety of beaks, despite their iconic status in evolutionary biology. It was left to an English schoolmaster on sabbatical in the late 1930s to carry out the first serious work on this question.Sheldon did not mention the subsequent work by Peter and Rosemary Grant who found that changes to the birds’ beaks oscillated according to the weather.  Lack only spent 4 months on a field trip studying the birds, compared to the Grants’ three decades.  It’s doubtful Lack’s work contributed much to scientific understanding of the Galapagos finches as much as the starting of a new movement: “The central message of Anderson’s book is that Lack should be understood as someone who bridged the gap between traditional natural history and the development of its modern academic descendant, evolutionary ecology.”  In short: the book is short on science, and big on name-dropping of the evolution giants Lack interacted with.  Whether “evolutionary ecology” is a productive use of biologists’ time is another subject.Homing pigeon navigation:  A bird article with no need for evolutionary theory, but implications for design, concerned homing pigeons’ uncanny ability to find home.  Science Daily reported that new experiments show the birds are not simple “flying robots,” but use cognitive ability when deciding what cues to follow.  They build a spatial map of their surroundings and can choose to head toward a feeder or home, depending on how hungry they are:“As we expected, the satiated pigeons flew directly to the home loft,” explains Prof. Hans-Peter Lipp, neuroanatomist at UZH [University of Zurich] and [Nicole] Blaser’s supervisor for her doctoral thesis. “They already started on course for their loft and only deviated from that course for a short time to make topography-induced detours.” The hungry pigeons behaved quite differently, setting off on course for the food loft from the very beginning and flying directly to that target. They also flew around topographical obstacles and then immediately adjusted again to their original course. Based on this procedure, Blaser concludes that pigeons can determine their location and their direction of flight relative to the target and can choose between several targets. They thus have a type of cognitive navigational map in their heads and have cognitive capabilities. “Pigeons use their heads to fly,” jokes the young biologist.There was no mention of evolution in the article.Was there ever a more useless, time-wasting, distracting theory than Darwinian evolution?  It made some people famous who were able to look like they were doing science.  It created camaraderie between fellow Darwine drinkers.  But did it ever produce understanding of the natural world?  After reading these articles, you be the judge.  We think an intelligent design perspective would have brought the coveted “insight” and “understanding” far earlier, without all the obstacles forcing observations to fit the hunches of a Bearded Buddha.  If you really need convincing, watch the new Illustra film Flight: The Genius of Birds.last_img read more

No, Grandparents Are Not Products of Evolution

first_imgIs nothing sacred? Evolutionists try to explain grandparents by Darwinism, but run into conundrums —while dishonoring seniors.Daniel Dennett called evolution a “universal acid,” but perhaps a better description is a universal toxin. Take any subject that gives human life beauty and meaning, and Darwinism will corrupt it into a Malthusian battle for ‘fitness’ – a vague term that can mean anything. Now they’re doing it again with grandparents.To most elderly people, grandchildren are a great blessing. We all know grandparents who brag on their grandchildren and absolutely love to dandle their children’s children on their knees and play with them. Grandparents are also a tremendous source of wisdom to the younger generation.Enter Darwin, and the lights go out. The smiles turn to blank stares. Grandparenting has no intrinsic value. It’s just a tool of the fitness machine, that works blindly for no purpose. In fact, in Darwinian theory, grandparenting makes no sense! Grandparents contribute no ‘fitness genes’ to the grandchildren.Since it makes no sense, Darwinians need to find out why it exists. They’ve tried it before, and now they’re at it again. In Current Biology, Michael A. Cant and Darrin P. Croft take up the challenge anew, trying to explain grandparents by natural selection. Their open-access paper, “Life-History Evolution: Grandmothering in Space and Time,” looks for hope in two new studies about an evolutionary conundrum.In this, they reduce human beings with all their values and purposes into pawns of natural forces. Not only that, they use the family records of Christians — in particular, Lutherans in Finland – as props in their dirty work. But does evolutionary theory help? Not at all. Cant and Croft can’t decide what makes sense. ‘On the one hand, this’ but ‘on the other hand, that’ summarizes this exercise in Darwinian futility.The evolutionary puzzle of the extended post-reproductive life of female humans has been explained by indirect fitness benefits gained by grandmothers helping raise their grandchildren. Two new studies support this ‘grandmother hypothesis’ and explore its limits in space and time.Grandfathers get even less respect than grandmothers in this amoral battleground between fitness genes. So in Darwinian terms, why don’t grandfathers keel over in their post-reproductive years? That ‘evolutionary puzzle’ is not even addressed. The authors appeal to ‘kin selection’ to explain grandparenting, a controversial idea even among evolutionists, with its counter-intuitive idea of ‘inclusive fitness,’ which brings in non-reproducers to help in the fitness game. It’s a logical stretch not at all accepted by all Darwinians. Even so, at the end, nothing is certain in the various approaches to sift grandparents through the Darwin sieve.Both studies provide important confirmation of the dynamic nature of kin selection as a force shaping human life history. Selection for late-life survival and helping is weaker when there are few grandchildren to help, those grandchildren live far away and grandmothers have become great-grandmothers. To understand how kin selection changes across the lifespan in family groups we need to zoom out to consider which individuals disperse from the family and how far, and how the life stages of family members are overlaid in time and space (Figure 2). These studies are further evidence that fundamental features of our physiology and patterns of aging are explained by our evolutionary history of family life, with all its opportunities for cooperation and conflict.The stale Darwinian rhetoric, never settled and always subject to new storytelling, adds nothing to “understanding” human nature. It turns our honored grandparents into mere objects, subject to “forces” of natural selection: kin selection according to some, ITSNTS selection by others (for that, see 3 April 2018).This is ugly. Get angry at stupid Darwinists today! They are destroying everything good, true and beautiful about human life. This is not science. Injecting Darwin toxin into human relationships destroys its subject matter.Another reason it is stupid is that it is self-refuting. The same ‘force’ that destroys grandparents destroys scientists, too. Cant and Croft are pawns of the same blind selective forces that make their only interest survival, not meaning. They can’s get out of their own trap. They couldn’t, and therefore didn’t, mean anything they said in this stupid paper! Everything is irrational in Darwinland. Stuff happens. Everybody fights to pass on their genes, or rather, is a sword in the hand of selfish genes, which includes the act of writing scientific papers. Are you angry yet? This is the stupid myth of our generation!Now go and impart some wisdom to your grandchildren, so that they don’t fall prey to the idols of our age. (Visited 344 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Former child soldier turns his story into a graphic novel

first_imgChildren’s rights activist Michel Chikwanine was kidnapped as a five-year-old and used as a child soldier in Democratic Republic of Congo. Now he has turned his story into a graphic novel. It is aimed at children from 10 years old and up. He wants to educate that age group about the issue. At the age of five, Michel Chikwanine was kidnapped and forced to become a child soldier. He has turned his story into a graphic novel. (Image: Screengrab via YouTube) Priya PitamberWhen Michel Chikwanine was just five years old his life changed irrevocably during a soccer game near his school in Democratic Republic of Congo. Rebel militiamen kidnapped him and the other children and forced them to become child soldiers.In a drug-infused daze, he was blindfolded and told to shoot. His victim was his best friend. “I was forced literally to kill my best friend as an initiation process into the army,” Chikwanine told US news website The World Post. “That’s something I will never forget, and I still fight with every single day.”He was one of the lucky ones who managed to escape after a few weeks and find his family again. They eventually fled to Uganda, and in 2004 made it to Canada as refugees. His father, a human rights activist, was killed in the conflict at home.But his experiences have led him to raise awareness about the issue of child soldiers, and he has become a children’s rights activist.Chikwanine wrote a graphic novel, Child Soldiers: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War, with co-author Jessica Dee Humphreys and illustrator Claudia Davila. It’s aimed at children aged 10 to 14.“It chronicles my experience in escaping this deal and ending up in a refugee camp with my family and escaping a war that affected so many people in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo,” he said.More than just a graphic novelChikwanine said illustrator Davila did a great job of depicting the story “in a very real way but also not making it too violent for young people”. Michel Chikwanine commended the illustrations by Claudia Davila in his book, Child Soldiers: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War. (Image: Screengrab via YouTube)There was an educational resource at the end of the book to help young people figure out how they could get back to their communities, should they find themselves being used as child soldiers, Chikwanine said. “It’s one of the most important parts of the book because as much as my story is so important, taking action and ending the problem is just as important.”Another educational aspect of the book is that it provides a wider view of the conditions that led to the conflict in his country.“When we talk about Africa, or any other part of the world, it’s always talked about in headlines,” he told The World Post. “Africa has a very stereotypical mention of being very violent and poor, but we forget to mention the context of the conflict and the poverty. It leads people to conclude the very stereotypical idea of what Africa is, and that’s not what it is.”Worldwide problemUsing children as soldiers in conflict is not isolated to Africa. According to Canada’s Toronto Public Library, “an estimated 250 000 children in Asia, Latin America, Europe, Africa and the Middle East, 40% of which include girls, have been kidnapped, stolen, forced and brainwashed to do the dirty deeds of violent captors in countries where political, economic, and humanitarian disputes have turned into lengthy and bloody wars”. Children are used as soldiers across the world, according to the United Nations. (Image: Human Rights)“Young people have to understand the complexities of what’s happening in the world,” Chikwanine told Toronto’s CBC Radio. “We can’t hide it from them — because whether we like it or not, it’s happening to five-year-olds in the Congo, in South America, in the Middle East and there are gangs here [in Canada] as well.”last_img read more