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Kansas legislators pass ban on abortion procedure; governor to sign it

Published Mar. 26, 2015

Kansas

Legislators pass ban on Abortion procedure

Kansas legislators have approved a proposed ban on a common second-trimester procedure described by abortion opponents as dismembering a fetus. Republican Gov. Sam Brownback has promised to sign the bill, which will make Kansas the first state with such a ban. The dilation and evacuation procedure is used in about 8 percent of all abortions in Kansas. Abortion foes call the procedure gruesome; abortion rights supporters say it's often the safest way for a woman terminating a pregnancy.

Australia

230 stopped from going to join ISIS

So far this month, counterterrorism squads have prevented 230 suspected jihadis from leaving Australian airports for the Middle East. Since counterterrorism units were attached to eight Australian airports in August, 86,000 travelers have been questioned and 230 people prevented from flying on suspicion that they were headed for the battlefields of Iraq and Syria to fight with groups including Islamic State, Prime Minister Tony Abbott told Parliament on Wednesday. Experts disagree about why Islamic State had been so effective recruiting in Australia. "It is absolutely critical that the people of Australia appreciate that the death cult is reaching out to vulnerable and impressionable young people," Abbott said, referring to the Islamic State group.

The Nation

If you're a nurse, it pays to be a man

For nurses, as for nearly everyone else in the U.S. workforce today, it pays to be a man. Registered nurses who are male earn nearly $11,000 more per year than RNs who are female, new research shows — and only about half of that difference can be explained by factors like education, work experience and clinical specialty. That leaves a $5,148 salary gap that effectively discriminates against women, who make up the vast majority of the nursing workforce, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. In some nursing specialties, the gap was even greater. In cardiology, for instance, male RNs earned $6,034 more than their female counterparts. Nurses who cared for hospital patients took home $3,873 more per year if they were men, according to the study. In outpatient settings, men earned $7,678 more than women.

California

Sodomite Suppression Act causes a ruckus

A proposed ballot initiative in California would authorize the killing of gays and lesbians by "bullets to the head" — or "any other convenient method." For a fee of $200, an attorney named Matthew McLaughlin has submitted what he called the Sodomite Suppression Act to the state Attorney General's Office, which has little choice but to set the clock running for gathering signatures. The proposed initiative is testing the limits of the state's normally liberal attitude on putting even the most extreme ideas on the ballot. "Mr. McLaughlin's immoral proposal is just the latest — and most egregious — example of the need to further reform the initiative process," said Evan Low, a Democratic state assemblyman.

Georgia

7 sailors charged in videotaping of women

The Navy has charged seven sailors in the illicit videotaping of female officers and student trainees aboard a submarine. Documents released Wednesday by the Navy show the Georgia-based sailors served aboard the USS Wyoming and were charged last month. Three of those sailors also are charged with taping the women. Prosecutors have said the videos show females undressing and drying off in the submarine's shower area. The Navy began allowing women to serve aboard U.S. submarines in 2011.

Times wires