It's not a requirement of Christianity. Should it be protected by law?In the United States, freedom of speech and freedom of religion are political buzzwords, most recently heard in regard to women's health issues. But in Europe, some people are fighting for the right to honor their faith as they see fit. In a landmark case, the European Court of Human Rights will decide whether employers have the right to stop Christian employees from wearing crosses at work.
According to the British newspaper The Telegraph, the argument hinges on the fact that, unlike the Muslim hajib, the Sikh turban, or the Jewish yarmulke, wearing of the cross is not a requirement of the Christian faith and therefore not protected by law.
Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights states: "Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching, practice and
Blog Posts by Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Work + Money – Mon, Mar 12, 2012 10:57 PM EDT
It's not a requirement of Christianity. Should it be protected by law?In the United States, freedom of speech and freedom of religion are political buzzwords, most recently heard in regard to women's health issues. But in Europe, some people are fighting for the right to honor their faith as they see fit. In a landmark case, the European Court of Human Rights will decide whether employers have the right to stop Christian employees from wearing crosses at work.Read More »from In Europe, Christians Fight for the Right to Wear a Cross at Work
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Healthy Living – Mon, Mar 12, 2012 5:04 PM EDT
Some lawmakers say we need to do a better job of regulating men's health.If women can't be trusted to make decisions about abortion and birth control without government interference, it stands to reason that men must need a little more guidance when it comes to vasectomies and erectile dysfunction, right?Read More »from Ohio Bill Hopes to Help Protect Vulnerable Men from Dangers of Viagra
In Ohio, Democratic state senator Nina Turner has introduced Senate Bill 307, which would restrict access to PDE-5 inhibitors like Viagra in order to "guide men to make the right decision for their bodies."
The bill would require doctors to get a notarized affidavit from "at least one of the patient's sexual partners" certifying that the patient has experienced impotence within the last 90 days, refer the patient to a sexual therapist to make sure that the patient's symptoms are not psychosomatic, conduct a cardiac stress test to make sure the patient is fit enough for sexual activity, and notify the patient in writing of the potential side-effects of the drugs. All of the above must be documented and, as in states where ultrasounds are mandated for
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Healthy Living – Mon, Mar 12, 2012 3:54 PM EDT
No one wins: Thanks to a state law that violated Medicaid rules, low-income women in Texas will find it harder to get health servicesThis year, more than 300,000 low-income women in Texas may find themselves without access to health services and contraception, thanks to state budget cuts and a new law banning Planned Parenthood from participating in the Texas Medicaid Women's Health Program -- a move that made Texas ineligible for $35 million in federal funds because it violates rules about Medicaid.Read More »from Low-income Women in Texas Will Find Health Care Even Harder to Come By
In an effort to limit abortion and block Planned Parenthood from receiving any taxpayer money, the Texas law, which goes into effect on Wednesday, bars health clinics with any affiliation to an abortion provider from participating in the Medicaid Women's Health Program -- even if that link is a single employee or board member, or even just the clinic's name, The Associated Press reported.
Ironically, the Planned Parenthood centers that do provide abortions are not affected by the Texas law since they're administered -- and funded -- separately from other clinics. Instead, clinics that provide birth control, cancer
Is the pressure of social media causing kids to act too sexy, too soon?Adolescence can be a tricky time for even the most well-adjusted kid out there. Add technology and social media to the equation, though, and young teens can find themselves facing the kind of scrutiny once reserved only for celebrities. They're constantly in front of a camera (usually in the form of a smartphone or a webcam), the images open to criticism from peers and strangers alike. In a bid to be -- or remain -- popular, many kids are posing in increasingly provocative, and inappropriate, ways.Read More »from Is Facebook Sexualizing Young Girls?
Is Facebook forcing young girls to be too sexual, too soon?
[Related: Facebook "Friend" offer exposes man's other wife]
Thirteen-year-old Jordan tells The New York Times: "I feel like I have to look good all the time - at school, at parties, at the mall, whenever I am socializing out of the house. I want people to say, 'She looks great.' I'm not happy if I don't think I look good."
It sounds typical teenage insecurity, but in this age of sexting and cyber-bullying, an embarrassing outfit
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Healthy Living – Thu, Mar 8, 2012 10:44 PM EST
Eleven other states are working on ultrasound bills -- and some of them are much harsher than Virginia's.On Wednesday, Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell signed the watered-down (but still controversial) bill mandating that women seeking abortions must have an ultrasound done before ending a pregnancy.Read More »from VA Passes Ultrasound Bill -- and 11 Other States Are Considering Similar Ones
The bill, which was passed by the state's Senate in February when it still required women to submit to trans-vaginal ultrasounds -- a procedure that some opponents called "state rape" -- also requires women who live within 100 miles of the clinic to wait 24 hours after the ultrasound before having an abortion. The new law goes into effect on July 1; abortion providers who do not comply with the new law will be hit with a $2,500 fine for each violation. (No official word on whether insurance companies, doctors, or the patients themselves will pick up the tab for the ultrasounds.)
"Governor McDonnell says that the Transportation Safety Administration is too intrusive with pat-downs at airports, but is willing to sign an intrusive, unnecessary ultrasound bill?" Leslie Byrne, the first woman
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Shine Food – Thu, Mar 8, 2012 7:12 PM EST
Oreo cookie turns 100 today, and a full century of milk-dipping, creme-scraping deliciousness later, they're still they're one of the most popular treats in the world.The Read More »from 100 Years of Oreo: Recipes and Facts About the Famous Cookie
Originally called the Oreo biscuit, they were created in a National Biscuit Company bakery in Manhattan on March 6, 1912. Now, more than 95 million cookies are sold every day in more than 100 countries, generating $1.5 billion in revenue each year.
Becky Tousey, Kraft Foods' corporate archivist, says that the brand's message hasn't changed over the course of a century.
"The focus of advertising was on the fun of eating Oreos, the fun of the parts of the Oreo," she told ABC News. "It has that theme of the enjoyment -- the twisting, the licking, the dunking. For me, as a historian, it's fun to see that thread throughout."
Though there are plenty of iterations of the Oreo out there -- in 2011, the Triple Double was born, with two flavors of creme and three layers of wafer all stacked together, and Kraft
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Parenting – Thu, Mar 8, 2012 5:58 PM EST
Utah has passed a bill that would ban schools from teaching anything other than abstinence during health classes.Most parents hope that teens will hold off on having sex, so most would agree that, when it comes to sex education, encouraging abstinence is important. But lawmakers in Utah have taken the ideal to the extreme, passing a bill this week that would make it illegal to talk about premarital sex, sexuality in general, homosexuality, and contraception, even in terms of preventing sexually transmitted diseases -- and even if a student asks a specific question about any of those topics.Read More »from Utah Passes Bill Banning Sex Education in Schools (UPDATED)
"Human sexuality instruction or instructional programs may not include instruction in, or the advocacy of, the intricacies of intercourse, sexual stimulation, or erotic behavior; homosexuality; the use of contraceptive methods or devices; or sexual activity outside of marriage," reads the bill, HB 363.
The Senate breezed through debate over the bill on Tuesday and then passed it, 19 to 10. According to those in favor of the bill, sex and sexuality are things that parents should address at home.
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Secrets to Your Success – Thu, Mar 8, 2012 3:40 PM ESTSecretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and first lady Michelle Obama with the recipients of the 2012 International Women of Courage Award. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton recognized 10 women for their courage and leadership at the the 2012 International Women of Courage Awards ceremony in Washington, D.C., on Thursday.
"It is the way we mark International Women's Day: to gather leaders and activists, and particularly our honorees, here in Washington, and to recognize their remarkable achievements," Clinton told the crowd of ambassadors, dignitaries, and students. "We want a great crescendo of voices, an international chorus that says clearly and unequivocally that women and girls deserve the same rights and opportunities as their fathers and brothers and sons."
This year's winners are not all well-known internationally, but their exceptional work in their home countries have made a difference in the lives of women world wide. "They are working tirelessly for justice," the Secretary of State explained. "They are working for accountability. They are working for freedom."
These women "are all making aRead More »from For International Women's Day, U.S. State Department Honors 10 Women Activists
- Former first lady Barbara Bush may be backing Mitt Romney, but she says that she's not a fan of this year's race for the Republican nomination.
"It's been, I think, the worst campaign I've ever seen in my life," she told about 300 people at a conference at Southern Methodist University on Monday. "I hate that people think 'compromise' is a dirty word. It's not a dirty word."
"I think the rest of the world is looking at us these days and saying, 'What are you doing? Why aren't you getting along? Why aren't you working together?' I'm sort of sad that we're not doing better," Mrs. Bush, the wife of President George H. W. Bush, added. "I'm optimistic, but I would like this campaign to be over." In an interview with Fox News later that day, she called the campaign "too ugly."
Her daughter-in-law, former first lady Laura Bush -- wife of President George W. Bush -- also spoke to the crowd. According to a Dallas Morning News report, when asked by Doris Kearns Goodwin about the lack of Read More »from Barbara Bush: GOP Presidential Race is "Too Ugly"
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Parenting – Wed, Mar 7, 2012 4:48 PM EST
150-year-old fairy tales found in Germany include some old versions of current favorites.Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm wrote some of the world's most famous and familiar fairy tales -- stories like "Hansel and Gretel," "Rapunzel," and "Snow White." Now, more than 500 other stories from the same era have been discovered in Germany, a treasure trove of magical tales and legends that haven't been read for more than 150 years.Read More »from 500 New Grimm-like Fairy Tales Discovered in Europe
[Related: 5 lessons I don't want my son learning from princesses]
The fairy tales, which were found in an archive in Regensburg, Germany, had been gathered by local historian Franz Xaver von Schonwerth in the mid-1800s, around the same time that the Brothers Grimm were crafting their own.
While the Grimm brothers sometimes wove fanciful stories out of local folk tales, von Schonwerth, a historian, spent his life researching the customs, history, and traditions of the local people and writing down their stories, carefully documenting what he heard without adding embellishments of his own. The Grimms knew of von Schonwerth's work; in 1885, Jacob Grimm said