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Lions protest railway construction in Kenya; furniture store burns down in Logan Square; protests in Charlotte end; Northwestern prints 3-D bones.

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Illustration by Amber Huff.

Illustrations by Amber Huff.

Conservationists (and Lions) Protest Kenyan Railway Construction

Kenya is taking billions of dollars in loans to build a railway from Mombasa, Kenya to Uganda — cutting through Nairobi National Park along the way.

Wildlife ranging from giraffes to lions live in the park, and critics fear this will herald the end of the park that is still within the city limits of Nairobi — one of the few in the world. “This park was a pristine piece of land in the beginning,” said Anthony Childs, the owner of a tourist hotel just outside of Nairobi park, to the BBC. “Now there’s a railway […] that will go across. When will it stop?”

Conservationists and dozens of others marched in Nairobi September 16, protesting the construction that would cut through almost four miles of the national park.

The workers’ safety, however, is also a concern. Lions have been known to attack and kill railways workers in the past.

“The man-eating lions really caused havoc in the history of the railway construction,” said assistant curator Elias Randiga at the Nairobi Railway Museum, to the BBC. The curator was discussing the century-old lion claws they have in storage at the museum — they were from lions that killed close to a hundred railway workers in the early 20th century.


Fertility Doctor Daddy Issues in Indiana

A fertility doctor in Indiana allegedly used his own sperm over 50 times with patients. The accused inseminator, 77-year-old Dr. Donald J. Cline, pleaded “not guilty” to several felony charges at the end of September.

Suspicions arose after a woman used the 23andMe genetic testing service and found she had eight other siblings. The woman then went to Fox59, who united the siblings and found that all of their mothers had gotten knocked-up at the same fertility clinic in the 1970s. Cline, at the time, told the women he was using donated sperm from medical and dental students at Indiana University.

“You watched ‘The Delivery Man,’ a movie about this, and you think, ‘Oh, it’s going to be this happy, joyous thing,’ and while it is — I have met, I love my sisters. I love them. I never knew I could fall in love. I never knew I could love someone so much so quickly,” said one of the donor children to Fox59. But, she said, “I feel like we deserve to know the truth.”

Illustration by Amber Huff.

Logan Square Furniture Store Burns Down

Threads Etc. in Logan Square caught fire on September 30. The furniture store is on Milwaukee Avenue, across the street from Revolution Brewing. It houses vintage, and sometimes rare, furniture pieces.

No one was in the store at the time, but the owner said to DNA Info that, “By the looks of it, it looks like a total loss.”


Protests Over Police Shooting in Charlotte End

Protests erupted in Charlotte after an African American man was shot and killed by a police officer. North Carolina ended the state of emergency for the city on September 24.

The protests over the death of Keith Lamont Scott became more violent on the second night when a protester, Justin Carr, was shot and killed. Eyewitness claims about the shooting differ broadly, but police now have a man in custody. Some say, however, that an officer was the one doing the shooting.


$1 Million paid to Family Of Aid Worker Killed by Drone

The U.S. government is paying $1 million to the family of an Italian Aid worker killed by a drone in Pakistan.

The 37-year-old aid worker, Giovanni Lo Porto, was being held by al-Qaida when he was killed. The U.S. government led the family on to believe he was soon going to be released — as early as a month before the strike. The Obama administration admitted to his mistaken death last year, saying it occurred during a secret counter-terrorism mission.

news-1Scientists Discover New Species of Giraffe

Scientists discovered four new species of giraffe in September. The Giraffe Conservation Foundation in Namibiat made the announcement after conducting an extensive survey and DNA analysis of the African-native mammal.

The co-founder of the foundation, Julian Fennessy, told Gizmodo he was surprised by the discovery. “These [different species of giraffe] split off one to two million years ago — that’s huge. It’s much larger than we expected.”


Ceasefire Ends in Syria

The Syrian government ended an already-shaky ceasefire when they bombed a United Nations aid convoy on September 19. The United States and Russia had brokered the ceasefire, with the U.S. on the side of rebel groups and Russia with the Syrian government.

In a statement relayed by the U.S. State Department’s spokesperson John Kirby, Secretary of State John Kerry conveyed “grave concern” about the worsening conflict in Syria,  “particularly for continued‎ Russian and Syrian regime attacks on hospitals, the water supply network, and other civilian infrastructure in Aleppo.”


Researchers Experiment With 3D-Printed Bones

Break a leg on your new longboard? Soon you may be able to replace it — with a 3D-printed bone, that is.

Although still untested in humans, monkeys and rats are doing pretty well with these “hyperelastic” bones. Normally, surgeons use bones from a patient’s own body if a replacement is needed, but researchers at Northwestern University are hard at work to get this biocompatible polymer up to human standards.

“The ability to easily print customizable implants is a big advance, and would offer a lot of opportunities in areas from plastic surgery to tumor removal and repair,” said Scott Hollister, a biomedical engineer at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, to Science Magazine.


Finnish Government Blocks Funding for the Helsinki Guggenheim Museum

Due to an intense political clash in Finland, the future of the Guggenheim Helsinki is in question.

The Helsinki museum was set to join the elite family of Guggenheim art museums (such as the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed museum in New York) — until last month. One of the co-ruling parties of the Finnish government denied state funding to the museum due to debate over stagnant economic growth. The pro-business politicians of Finland argued that the museum would boost the city’s cultural profile and economy, while taxpayers had been skeptical of the $40 million price tag the museum would cost the city.

“We understand that it takes time. That said, we are disappointed that the project was not included in the budget,” said Ari Wiseman, the deputy director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, to Reuters. Wiseman made sure to promise, however, that the foundation would continue to negotiate with the Finnish government for the museum’s construction.


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