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HEROES DAY : Nation honours 257 Jamaicans for outstanding service

BY ALPHEA SAUNDERS Senior staff reporter saundersa@jamaicaobserver.com  Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Two hundred and fifty-seven Jamaicans received national honours and awards yesterday at the annual investiture and awards ceremony held on the laws of King's House in St Andrew.
This year’s Order of Jamaica recipients (from left), MVP
 Track Club boss Vincent Stephen Francis, for outstanding
 contribution to track and field through coaching
Eighty of those were from the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF), the Jamaica Constabulary Force, the Jamaica Fire Brigade and the Department of Correctional Services.
Sister Mary Paschal Figueroa, OD
 receives the Order of Distinction
Famed musician Neville O'Reilly Livingstone, better known as “Bunny Wailer”, the only living member of the legendary Wailing Wailers band, headed the long list of distinguished honorees. He was conferred with the Order of Merit for his work in the field of popular music.
The Order of Merit is the country's third-highest honour and is conferred on citizens who have achieved “eminent international distinction” in their field of endeavour.
Five Jamaicans received the Order of Jamaica, the fourth-highest honour, among them world-renowned track and field coach Vincent Stephen Francis of MVP track club fame; University of the West Indies Principal Professor Archibald McDonald for excellence in academia and public service; Phillip Gore for outstanding service in business, community development and humanitarianism; Ambassador Clifton Stone for outstanding public service; and Anthony Hart, for outstanding service in business, community development and humanitarianism.
Trench Town hero Tremayne Brown 
Bunny Livingston Wailer,
Order of Merit
There were 44 appointees to the Order of Distinction (Commander class), from various areas of national life including Police Commissioner George Quallo for distinguished service to the Jamaica Constabulary Force; West Indies batsman Christopher Gayle; Heather Cooke, for service to the Houses of Parliament; Lyttleton Shirley for contribution to the public sector; Senator Don Wehby, group chief executive officer of GraceKennedy, for sterling contribution to the private and public sectors; Sylvester Tulloch, for contribution to housing development and the Mico Foundation; Supreme Ventures Chairman Paul Hoo, for outstanding contribution to the sporting industry; and Clifton Yap, for service in the field of architecture and construction. more

GANJA UNIVERSITY : US university offering marijuana degree.... Northern Michigan University in Marquette began its medical plant chemistry program this semester, with about a dozen students in the first class

Marijuana

Monday, October 16, 2017

MARQUETTE, Michigan (AP) — A university in Michigan is offering an unusual degree — in marijuana.

Northern Michigan University in Marquette began its medical plant chemistry program this semester, with about a dozen students in the first class, the Detroit Free Press reported. The programme combines chemistry, biology, botany, horticulture, marketing and finance.

It's an unusual programme. Other universities offer classes on marijuana policy and law. And places such as Oaksterdam University, Cannabis College, and Humboldt Cannabis College, all in California; and THC University, the Grow School and Clover Leaf University in Denver offer certificates in a variety of disciplines. But Northern Michigan's programme is unique because the university is offering a four-year degree addressing the science and business behind growing marijuana.

"When they hear what my major is, there are a lot of people who say, 'Wow, cool dude. You're going to get a degree growing marijuana,'" said Alex Roth, a sophomore in the programme. "But it's not an easy degree at all."

Brandon Canfield, an associate chemistry professor at Northern Michigan, said students don't grow marijuana plants in the programme, but instead look to other plants that are traditionally recognised with medicinal value but aren't illegal to grow. Students learn how to measure and extract the compounds in the plants that can be used for medicinal purposes, then transfer that knowledge to marijuana, which has been used to treat a variety of illnesses, including chronic pain, nausea, seizures and glaucoma.

Canfield said he got the idea while attending the American Chemical Society's annual meeting in San Diego last year.

"It was my off day and I saw there was a cannabis chemistry group that was putting on a whole series of talks," he said. "I heard all about the need for analytical chemists and all sorts of interesting talks. That was the initial spark." more

BAD CARD? Cindy Breakspeare counters Danny Sims' claim made in the paperback edition of Roger Steffens' sensational book, So Much Things To Say

BY HOWARD CAMPBELL Observer senior writer  Wednesday, October 11, 2017

When the paperback edition of Roger Steffens' sensational book, So Much Things To Say: The Oral History of Bob Marley, is released next year, it will have an additional interview with someone who was close to the reggae king.
Image result for cindy breakspeare
Cindy Breakspeare & Bob Marley
Cindy Breakspeare, Marley's lover and mother of his son Damian, counters a claim by his former manager Danny Sims that Rita Marley served her and Marley breakfast in bed.
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Cindy Breakspeare, former Miss World
Sims is one of the individualss who Steffens interviewed for the book. He told Steffens that while an ailing Marley was staying at his Manhattan apartment in the summer of 1980, his wife Rita willingly served Bob and Breakspeare breakfast in bed.
The 75-year-old Steffens told the Jamaica Observer that he was recently contacted by Breakspeare.
“She was concerned that the Marleys would think that she made the statement. It was made by Danny Sims, not Cindy. She absolutely denies that this ever happened,” said Steffens.
Roger Steffens
'So Much Things To Say' is built around interviews Steffens had with people close to Marley, who died from cancer in 1981. Breakspeare, Sims, Bunny Wailer, Joe Higgs, Allan “Skill” Cole, and Lee Jaffe are some of the key players.
Image result for danny sims pic
Danny Sims
Sims, a black American who first met Marley in the 1960s, gave some of the book's most interesting tales. He also claims Marley met with members of the Gambino Mafia family in April 1980 to seek “protection”. The controversial Sims actually had Mob connections. He died in 2012.
Marley, a notorious womaniser, had an open relationship with Breakspeare, who was Miss World 1976. Their affair was covered extensively by the tabloids, especially in the United Kingdom where Marley lived during the late 1970s.
Rita Marley is matriarch of the Marley estate, which is a multi-million-dollar empire. Steffens is not aware of any contact between her and Breakspeare.
“She (Breakspeare) tries to have a civil relationship with Rita as far as I can tell,” said Steffens. more

SHOCK REPORT: 3 WOMEN SAY HARVEY RAPED THEM Disturbing New Report Alleges Harvey Weinstein Sexually Assaulted Multiple Women... Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow And Others Say Harvey Weinstein Harassed Them “I had a bad experience with Harvey Weinstein in my youth,” Jolie told The New York Times.i

By Jenna Amatulli 10/10/17

The New Yorker published a report on Tuesday detailing accusations of sexual assault and rape against film executive Harvey Weinstein. 
“Too few women were willing to speak, much less allow a reporter to use their names, and Weinstein and his associates used nondisclosure agreements, monetary payoffs, and legal threats to suppress these myriad stories,” Ronan Farrow writes.
Harvey Weinstein
Farrow goes on to say that over the course of 10 months, he “was told by thirteen women that, between the nineteen-nineties and 2015, Weinstein sexually harassed or assaulted them, allegations that corroborate and overlap with the Times’s revelations, and also include far more serious claims.”
Sallie Hofmeister, a spokeswoman for Weinstein, issued a statement to The New Yorker in response to the allegations.
“Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein,” it reads. “Mr. Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances. Mr. Weinstein obviously can’t speak to anonymous allegations, but with respect to any women who have made allegations on the record, Mr. Weinstein believes that all of these relationships were consensual. Mr. Weinstein has begun counseling, has listened to the community and is pursuing a better path. Mr. Weinstein is hoping that, if he makes enough progress, he will be given a second chance.”
Those accusations include:
1) Audio of Weinstein that was “captured during a New York Police Department sting operation in 2015.” In it, the executive “admits to groping a Filipina-Italian model named Ambra Battilana Gutierrez, describing it as behavior he is ‘used to.’”
2) Actress and director Asia Argento claiming Weinstein “forcibly performed oral sex onher,” which then led to complicated sexual encounters that she said brought her “back to the little girl that I was when I was twenty-one.” She added: “When I see him, it makes me feel little and stupid and weak... After the rape, he won.” more

IN JAMAICA: Suspended For Sex Video - St Catherine High Students (IN SCHOOL UNIFORM) Sent Home Over Raunchy Social Media Challenge

Published:Thursday | October 5, 2017 | 10:00 AMNadine Wilson-Harris
A group of students at the St Catherine High School have been suspended following their participation in a raunchy social media challenge, which encourages participants to verbalise the extent that they would go for sexual pleasure.
The challenge has provided an outlet for many to rap about their sexual desires and has seen several international celebrities joining the movement, which has gone viral.
The male and female students, in flexing their lyrical muscles, did not spare details as they shared that they would, among other things, be willing to skip school to gain access to male or female genitalia.
Vice-principal of the St Johns Road-based institution, Geraldine Palmer-Allen, said that the video was brought to the attention of school administrators on Monday, and the students, who are all in grade 10, were given a five-day suspension the following day. Members of the school board are expected to meet shortly to discuss the matter.
Palmer-Allen said that she has been getting calls from past students, who have expressed concern that the video has brought the school into disrepute. Among the institution's past students are Prime Minister Andrew Holness and his wife, member of parliament, Juliet.
"I understand that it is a challenge that is going around. I wasn't even aware. It is when this thing came to light that I heard that. I don't know why anybody would want to have a challenge about that. To me, sex is a private matter. If there is such a challenge going on, it is not for kids," the vice-principal said, while noting that both those who had verbalised their desires as well as those who had made the video were suspended.
Palmer-Allen shared that they have held several sessions in recent times aimed at teaching students how to act responsibly on social media.
"We are concerned about them. We talk to them all the time. We have Girls' Day, we have Boys' Day, and we try to teach these students in every way as to what is acceptable behaviour, what is Christian practice, and values that we expect them to uphold," she said. more

Manhattan DA Dropped Criminal Probe Of Trump Kids After Campaign Donation: Report Indictment of Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr. seemed “a real possibility,” according to a report by ProPublica, The New Yorker and WNYC.

By Willa Frej

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.’s office was busy probing a felony fraud case involving siblings Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr. in 2012. But after Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Marc Kasowitz, intervened, the investigation was dropped within months, according to a report from ProPublica, The New Yorker and WNYC published on Wednesday.