High court sends back race-based plan
Affirmative action in college admissions survived Supreme Court review Monday in a consensus decision that avoided the difficult constitutional issues surrounding a challenge to the University of Texas admission plan.
Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the court’s 7-1 ruling that said a court should approve the use of race as a factor in admissions only after it concludes “that no workable race-neutral alternatives would produce the educational benefits of diversity.”
But the decision did not question the underpinnings of affirmative action, which the high court last reaffirmed in 2003.
Inmates must be moved due to fungus
A federal judge on Monday ordered the state to move several thousand inmates out of two California prisons because they are at a high risk of contracting a potentially deadly airborne fungus.
U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson instructed corrections officials to transfer most black, Filipino and medically at-risk inmates because they are more vulnerable to health problems from valley fever. The fungal infection originates in the soil of the San Joaquin Valley, where Avenal and Pleasant Valley state prisons are located.
He gave the state 90 days to fully comply.
Boy Scouts injured in lightning strike
A lightning strike at a New Hampshire Boy Scouts camp has injured nearly two dozen scouts.
Scouts spokesman Greg Osborn says no one was hit directly by the lightning Monday at the Griswold Scout Reservation. He says some of the 23 Scouts and three adults who were injured complained of tingling and burning sensations, and all were treated by camp nurses before being hospitalized as a precaution. He says those who were treated are doing well and are in good spirits.
Jolie urges world to end rape in war
Angelina Jolie made her debut before the U.N.’s most-powerful body as a special envoy for refugees Monday and urged the world’s nations to make the fight against rape in war a top priority.
The actress told the Security Council that “hundreds of thousands — if not millions — of women, children and men have been raped in conflicts in our lifetimes.”
Jolie, a goodwill ambassador for the U.N. high commissioner for refugees, said the Security Council has witnessed 67 years of wars and conflict since it was established “but the world has yet to take up war-zone rape as a serious priority.”
“You set the bar,” she told the council. “If the ... council sets rape and sexual violence in conflict as a priority it will become one and progress will be made. If you do not, this horror will continue.”
NYPD: No to skyscraper stunt
New York’s top police officer says Nik Wallenda’s hope of tightrope walking between the city’s most famous skyscrapers just isn’t going to fly.
NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly was asked Monday about the possibility of Wallenda, a member of the famous “Flying Wallendas” circus family, walking a tightrope between the Chrysler and Empire State buildings.
The daredevil completed a walk over a gorge near the Grand Canyon on Sunday, walked over Niagara Falls a year ago, and was eyeing New York City for his next death-defying attempt.
“I would say no,” Kelly said. “I think it’s dangerous.”