Fighting For What’s Right

Grind for October 9th, 2018
“No man will ever carry out of the Presidency the reputation which carried him into it.”
-Thomas Jefferson

World News

The Headline

Nobel Peace Prize awarded to “Dr. Miracle” and former ISIS captive

The Grind

The 2018 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded this Friday to Nadia Murad and Dr. Denis Mukwege.

Murad, who was named the UN’s first Goodwill Ambassador for the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking, is a Yazidi woman who was captured by ISIS and forced into sexual slavery for three months before escaping.

Dr. Mukwege, AKA “Dr. Miracle,” is a gynecologist from the Congo known for his skill and devotion for helping rape victims.

The pair received the Nobel Peace Prize for their work and to bring attention to the reality of human trafficking and the need to eliminate the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war.

The Details

Murad, who was honored based on her refusal to remain silent about the torture she endured, has drawn international attention to the plight of Yazidi women.

“The hope of ISIS was to break the Yazidi community,” says Murad. “But for survivors…going back to their lives and getting married and making a life and working, it’s basically making sure ISIS did not succeed.”

Yazidi women and girls able to escape from ISIS face a wide array of physical and mental problems that make it difficult to return to normal life.

That’s where Dr. Miracle comes in.

When Dr. Mukwege opened Panzi Hospital in 1999, his goal was to improve the maternal mortality rate in the Congo. But after meeting his first patient – a woman who had been violently raped – his views changed.

Dr. Mukwege dedicated his life to helping rape victims and his Panzi Hospital grew into an international foundation with the same goal.

Unfortunately Mukwege’s work doesn’t sit well with rebel militias or his own government. In 2012, gunmen entered his house and tried to kill him and his family. Mukwege fled the Congo after the attack, but decided to return home after a group of women sold their harvest to buy him a plane ticket.

“After that gesture, I couldn’t really say no…And also, I am myself determined to help fight these atrocities, this violence,” says Mukwege. “My life has had to change, since returning. I now live at the hospital and I take a number of security precautions, so I have lost some of my freedom.”


The Headline

Brett Kavanaugh confirmed to Supreme Court

The Grind

Despite Democrats’ best efforts to stop him, Judge Brett Kavanaugh on Saturday was confirmed to the US Supreme Court.

The 50-48 vote was almost entirely along party lines, with only one Democrat (Joe Manchin of West Virginia) backing Kavanaugh and only one Republican (Lisa Murkowski of Alaska) opposing him.

The vote reflects the growing divide between political parties as well as the increasing politicization of the Supreme Court – leading some to ask whether future presidents will be able to win confirmation for their nominees when the Senate is controlled by the opposition.

The Details

Kavanaugh’s confirmation was stalled last month when three women accused him of sexual misconduct. The ensuing partisan fight resulted in an FBI probe (which was inconclusive) and an uptick in Republicans’ excitement regarding midterms.

Based on his past rulings and legal writings, Kavanaugh is expected to support conservative positions on issues regarding campaign finance, abortion, gun control, labor, use of public funds by faith groups, and environmental protection.

Kavanaugh’s appointment is a major victory for Trump, who was successful in promoting Judge Neil Gorsuch to the bench last April.

Kavanaugh’s presence on the bench creates a conservative 5-4 majority that will last long after Trumps out of office. Kavanaugh could join the high court as early as Tuesday (October 9th).

Did you know… The shortest war on record was fought between Zanzibar and England in 1896. Zanzibar surrendered after 38 minutes.