This is one of the cutest things you’ll see on the Internet today.
A little turtle riding on the back of a manatee as a large group of sea cows swim through the El Portal neighborhood of Miami.
You seriously can’t make this stuff up.
I mean you could, but this is totally real.
The photo was taken back on Feb 21 by José Ángel Gonzalo. He then posted them to the neighborhood social media site Nextdoor.com.
Manatees are not an uncommon sight in South Florida waters and are often in the news as many of them are killed each year by boaters who run over them with propellors.
So far this year, already four manatees have been killed in Miami-Dade County.
“I just wanted to share with all of you these beautiful pictures,” Gonzalo wrote in a social media post. “I saw like 20 manatees in our Little River. Pls, lets take care of them and protect their environment. Btw, have a look at the little turtle!!!”
For the record, that turtle is now our spirit animal.
You can read more about this story [in Spanish] on Univision.com.
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South Florida is known for many things. Beautiful weather, multiculturalism, hot nightlife and soul crushing public transportation that literally makes you want to die. (You don’t see that last part in the Chamber of Commerce brochures.)
One group of high achieving young people are trying to revolutionize the way South Florida gets around by bringing a radical form of public transportation here.
Two brothers—Darius and Demetrius Villa—and their friend, Aleksandr Khalfin, founded the High Speed Rail America Club (HSRAC) at Florida International University last year and they have found some success in spreading their message.
The club researches and promotes high-speed rail trains, also known as bullet trains, in America. Bullet trains, which average more than 150 mph, don’t exist in our country, and it’s a fuel-efficient and quicker way to travel, Demetrius told RISE NEWS in an interview last year.
They say that they are the leading high-speed advocacy group for millennials.
The group believes that Miami should build up an ambitious system of Maglev transportation that would eventually connect the Magic City to Miami Beach and FIU.
With a healthy amount of grassroots support now at their back, the HSRAC wants to get some political muscle on their side.
They plan to do this by presenting a Miami Maglev Forum on April 7th from 10 AM-12 PM on the FIU campus. And they hope that local political leaders will show up to learn about the proposed idea and to interact with young transportation activists.
They tried and failed at this once before.
“Last September, the group partnered with American Maglev Technology, the FIU Honors College, and All Aboard Florida to host the first Miami Maglev forum,” a press release from the HSRAC read. “While the forum itself had students and FIU community leaders in attendance, a grand total of zero representatives came from the leadership of Miami, Miami-Dade, and Miami Beach. Students were highly upset of the lack of leadership from their elected officials, and grew further disenchanted with the infrastructural direction of the community.”
The release goes on to say that transportation directors, commissioners, and mayors of all three municipalities (Miami-Dade County, City of Miami, Miami Beach) were emailed, and no responses were received from them.
“To make amends to both the citizens and their elected officials, we are hosting a 2nd Maglev Forum to be able to discuss ideas, the direction of the community, and towards finding a solution that the populace agrees with,” the release reads.
If you want to learn more about the group or the event, you can follow them on Facebook.
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. Anyone can write for us as long as you are fiercely interested in making the world a better place.
Cover Photo Credit: Thomas Lok/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)Post Views: 952
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Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge Milton Hirsch ruled today that Florida’s death penalty system is unconstitutional due to a controversial element of state law that allows juries to sentence defendants to death without a unanimous decision.
According to the Miami Herald, Hirsch’s ruling will be the latest to stir the pot in terms of Florida’s death penalty.
Capital punishment in the state is already under review after the US Supreme Court ruled the sentencing system unconstitutional.
As the Herald points out, only Florida and Alabama allow non-unanimous juries to impose death sentences.
“A decedent cannot be more or less dead. An expectant mother cannot be more or less pregnant,” Judge Hirsch wrote in a court document obtained by the Herald. “And a jury cannot be more or less unanimous. Every verdict in every criminal case in Florida requires the concurrence, not of some, not of most, but of all jurors – every single one of them.”
Hirsch issued the ruling in the case of Karon Gaiter, who is accused of first degree murder.
The Florida Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case last week that could see all 390 people who are currently on death row in the state to be given life sentences due to the flawed sentencing system.
“Arithmetically the difference between 12 and 10 is slight,” Hirsch wrote in his opinion. “But the question before me is not a question of arithmetic. It is a question of constitutional law. It is a question of justice.”
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. You can write for us.
Cover Photo Credit: Andrew Petro/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)Post Views: 510
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The personnel jacket of North Miami police officer Jonathan Aledda does not include information regarding whether he was properly trained to interact with people with developmental disabilities like Autism, a RISE NEWS investigation found.
Aledda has come to national attention after he shot unarmed therapist Charles Kinsey three times in the leg last week in a North Miami street.
The Miami-Dade police union president said that Aledda was not trying to shoot Kinsey, but rather his autistic patient named Arnaldo Eliud Rios.
The jacket, which was released by the police department last week details Aledda’s history as a police officer in the city of North Miami.
It also shows some of the trainings Aledda received.
Notably missing from the document is any indication that Aledda received Crisis Intervention Team Policing training (CIT) from the Eleventh Circuit Court.
CIT is often cited by police departments as a top local training method for officers to learn how to deal with people with mental illnesses.
The training also includes a small section (one page) about Autism and other developmental disabilities.
North Miami police spokeswoman Natalie Buissereth said that roughly 85% to 95% of North Miami officers have received CIT training.
“If you don’t see it, it’s not there,” Buissereth said of Aledda’s missing CIT training certificate in his personnel jacket.
However, Buissereth also said in a phone interview with RISE NEWS, that she would follow up to double check whether Aledda was CIT trained.
Calls to the CIT office have not been returned.
According to information found on the Eleventh Circuit website, CIT officers are pretty important.
“CIT officers respond to crisis calls involving possible mental health issues,” a frequently asked question page about the program says. “They evaluate and de-escalate potentially volatile situations and as necessary transport individuals suffering from a mental illness to community-based facilities for evaluation, treatment, and referrals, instead of subjecting them to immediate arrest when appropriate.”
WATCH: RISE NEWS report from the scene of the Charles Kinsey shooting
Aledda’s personnel jacket paints him as an ambitious and talented young officer who is always volunteering for extra responsibilities.
“Officer Aledda reports to work with a clean and pressed uniform,” A performance evaluation from June of 2016 reads. “He represents a good image for his peers and employees to follow.”
While it is not clear whether Aledda was trained in how to deescalate stations with people who have developmental disabilities, his personnel jacket does show that he is trained in a number of other areas, including as a member of the SWAT team and as a volunteer member of the Strategic Action for Enhanced Enforcement and High Intense Visibility and Enforcement teams.
According to a performance review from August 2014, Aledda “productivity” is “consistently substantially above his peers.”
For example, in July of 2014, Aledda conducted 26 arrests, answered 82 calls for service and issued 138 traffic citations.
For comparions sake, 1 out of every 68 people are autistic.Post Views: 951
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