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This is America: 9 out of 10 public schools now hold mass shooting drills for students

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How "active shooter" drills became normal for a generation of American schoolchildren.
"Are you kids good at running and screaming?" a police officer asks a class of elementary school kids in Akron, Ohio.
His friendly tone then turns serious.
“What I don’t want you to do is hide in the corner if a bad guy comes in the room,” he says. "You gotta get moving."
This training session — shared online by the ALICE Training Institute, a civilian safety training company — reflects the new normal at American public schools. As armed shooters continue their deadly rampages, and while Washington remains stuck on gun control, a new generation of American students have learned to lock and barricade their classroom doors the same way they learn to drop and roll in case of a fire.
The training session is a stark reminder of how American schools have changed since the 1999 Columbine school shooting. School administrators and state lawmakers have realized that a mass shoot…

Philippine president swears at European MPs over death penalty criticism

President Rodrigo Duterte
President Rodrigo Duterte
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has berated the European parliament for passing a resolution condemning his plans to revive the death penalty for drug convicts.

“I’ll talk in English,” he said, speaking to Filipino expatriates on a two-day state visit to Myanmar. “Do not impose your culture or your belief in what would be a government in this planet. Do not impose on other countries, especially us.

“Why don’t you mind your own business? Why do you have to fuck with us, goddamn it?”

Since taking office in July last year, Duterte, nicknamed “the Punisher” for his lethal approach to policing, has led a bloody drugs war that has killed more than 7,000 people. Many of the dead are suspected low-level dealers and alleged drug addicts.

Loved by many in the Philippines for his confrontational style, the president has lashed out at his critics, labelling the United Nations “stupid” and former US president Barack Obama a “son of a whore”. He also announced he personally killed criminals, including throwing one suspect to his death from a helicopter.

The Philippine house of representatives approved a version of the death penalty bill this month that will allow the execution of drug convicts by hanging, firing squad, or lethal injection. The draft will now go to the senate.

A resolution delivered by European Union lawmakers last week said it was “deeply alarmed” that the Philippines was planning to reintroduce the death penalty and that it considers capital punishment to be “cruel and inhuman ... which fails to act as a deterrent to criminal behaviour.”

The text also called for the release of Duterte’s highest-profile critic, Senator Leila de Lima, who was arrested last month on drug trafficking charges that the EU said “are almost entirely fabricated”.

The body also condemned Duterte’s open threats to kill human rights defenders, “credible reports” that Philippine polices falsify evidence to justify extrajudicial killings, and plans to lower the age of criminal responsibility to nine years old.

Following the killing of a South Korean businessman by rogue officers, Duterte halted all police operations in his anti-drug campaign. However, he has asked the army to continue the crackdown on crime.

More than two-thirds of all countries in the world have abolished the death penalty.

The Philippines was one of the first states in southeast Asia to ban executions although Duterte said in his speech on Sunday that the punishment was a “favourite” in the region.

“Because there is a death penalty in Indonesia, Malaysia, and I’m trying to revive it,” he said.

Source: The Guardian, Oliver Holmes, March 20, 2017

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