Only in America
April 25, 2013

An Ohio tanning salon has deemed a customer "too fat to tan" and refused to offer her a refund. Upon arriving for her second session, Kelly McGrevey was told that the salon had just implemented a new policy forbidding customers weighing over 230 pounds from using the beds. McGrevey called the humiliating incident "discrimination" and has filed a report against the business.

greek life
7:30pm ET
Jay Paul/Getty Images

University of Virginia sorority sisters were ordered by their national chapters to stay away from fraternity brothers' parties this weekend, The Washington Post reports. The mandate comes after a now-discredited Rolling Stone article on sexual assault in Greek life prompted a close look the school's safety and culture.

Saturday is fraternity Bid Night. Different sorority chapters told members they'd risk suspension, fines, and other penalties for attending parties that night. Some chapters were told to avoid fraternity gatherings in general, not just Bid Night parties.

An online petition against the mandate started earlier this week read:

Instead of addressing rape and sexual assault at UVa, this mandate perpetuates the idea that women are inferior, sexual objects. It is degrading to Greek women, as it appears that the [National Panhellenic Conference] views us as defenseless and UVa’s new fraternal policies as invalid. Allowing the NPC to prevent us from celebrating (what used to be) a tight-knit community, sends the message that we are weak. []

Some sororities are planning mandatory in-house retreats Saturday to avoid violating the rule, The Post reports.

This just in
6:43pm ET

In simultaneous attacks on Thursday, militants hit more than a dozen army and police targets in the Sinai Peninsula, killing at least 25 soldiers and one policeman and wounding more than 60.

At least one car bomb went off outside a military base at the same time mortars were fired, bringing down buildings and burying soldiers underneath the debris, The Associated Press reports. The attacks took place in the Northern Sinai provincial capital el-Arish, the town of Sheik Zuwayid, and the town of Rafah, bordering Gaza. An Army spokesman blamed the Muslim Brotherhood, but the Islamic State affiliate in Egypt took responsibility on Twitter, the SITE Intelligence Group reports.

uber drama
6:31pm ET
Adam Berry/Getty Images

A New Delhi woman who said she was raped by an Uber driver filed a U.S. federal lawsuit against the car service Thursday, Reuters reports.

The woman, who is not named, called Uber "the modern day equivalent of electronic hitchhiking," in the lawsuit. "Buyer beware — we all know how those horror movies end."

In the lawsuit, the woman asks for an overhaul of the company's safety practices and for unspecified damages.

India is Uber's largest international market, going by cities covered, according to Reuters. India banned the San Francisco company from operating last month after allegations and arrest of the driver, but Uber restarted services there last week.

5:54pm ET
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The New York Police Department is creating an anti-terror strike force, Commissioner Bill Bratton announced Thursday. The 350-cop unit will focus on "disorder control and counterterrorism protection capabilities," he said.

The squad, which is expected to recieve funds from New York City as well as federal Homeland Security grants, will be trained in high-tech weaponry. They'll handle a variety of situations, like protests, Charlie Hebdo-esque terrorist attacks, and lone-wolf attacks, CBS New York reports.

Science says
5:24pm ET
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Pick a scientist at random, and she'll almost always say climate change is real and influenced by humans.

Pew Research found 87 percent of scientists in the American Association for the Advancement of Science will say so. By contrast, only half of U.S. adults surveyed believe the same thing. The rest believe, in almost equal measure, either that climate change is real but natural, or that there is no solid evidence to support the existence of climate change.

Pew covered other topics in science as well. Take evolution: 98 percent of AAAS scientists say humans evolved over time, yet only 65 percent of the general population is on board.

To see where else the public disagrees with science, check out Pew's full report.

TV Violence
4:18pm ET

Brandishing a pistol with a silencer and declaring himself part of a "hackers' collective," a man threatened his way into Dutch television broadcaster NOS Thursday evening, demanding airtime to broadcast a personal message.  In dramatic footage recorded in a virtually empty news studio, the attacker was arrested by police:

Before the gunman's arrest, he described himself as part of a group "hired in by intelligence agencies," and produced a letter claiming there were "eight heavy explosives placed in the country, containing radioactive material."

During the incident, staff were evacuated from the building and the evening's news broadcast was canceled.

the wonderful world of disney
3:58pm ET

Disney has crowned another princess. Elena, the Princess of Avalor, will debut in the Disney Junior series Sofia the First before spinning off into her own series:

In a statement, Disney described Elena as " a confident and compassionate teenager in an enchanted fairy tale kingdom inspired by diverse Latin cultures and folklore." The character will be voiced by Aimee Carrero, who was born in the Dominican Republic.

This just in
3:57pm ET
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

After weeks of debate, the Senate on Thursday passed a measure to approve the construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline. The bill passed on a largely party-line vote, 62-36, and heads to the House, where it is also expected to pass.

Debate over the measure dragged throughout January as lawmakers considered a host of potential amendments, including one from Democrats that sought to declare humans are to blame for global warming. President Obama has said he will veto the bill if it reaches his desk.

This just in
3:13pm ET

Dartmouth College President Phil Hanlon has announced that the school will ban hard alcohol. The news comes after a number of reports about sexual assault at universities across the U.S.

The hard alcohol ban, which will forbid the consumption and possession of alcohol that's 30 proof or above, will take effect in the spring term. Social events on campus will also require bartenders and bouncers.

Hanlon also announced that Dartmouth will develop a "mandatory four-year sexual violence prevention and education program" this fall. Specifics about the program "have yet to be determined."

In his announcement Thursday, Hanlon threatened to remove fraternities and other student groups that fail "to elevate and not denigrate the Dartmouth experience."

2:31pm ET

A recent survey found that "the only thing people hate more than the government is their internet provider" — and it turns out the feeling may be mutual.

When a customer in Spokane, Washington, tried to cancel his family’s Comcast subscription, The Hill reports, he found his first name was changed on his next bill from "Ricardo" to "Asshole." 

Comcast has reportedly apologized to the Browns, saying the incident is "completely unacceptable and inappropriate" and that the company is "conducting a thorough investigation."

The family is not sure how it happened, either. Ricardo's wife, Lisa, reports that they had been polite throughout the long and frustrating struggle of trying to get out of their contract. "It could have been that person was upset because I didn't take the offer," she said.

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