Saturday, December 16, 2006

NewsBank Hot Topics December 2006

You can research any of these hot topics using NewsBank. Lansing Library card required.

HOT TOPICS – December 2006

Further information on these topics may be found in NewsBank’s Special Reports
CRIME AND LAW – Passport Requirements
TOPIC: The Homeland Security Department will require nearly all air travelers entering the U.S. after January 23, 2007 to show a passport. This will apply to U.S. citizens also. What are the reasons for this new law? What countries do not require passports now? What other changes are planned for 2008?
SEARCH TERMS: passports AND “homeland security”

TOPIC: Various news media are now describing the political violence in Iraq as a civil war between the Sunnis and the Shiites but the Bush administration is saying the violence does not fit that definition. What defines a civil war? What kind of political violence would not fit that definition?
SEARCH TERMS: Iraq AND civil war

PEOPLE – Alexander Litvinenko
TOPIC: An investigation has started into the poisoning death of Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko. Where was Litvinenko killed? Who did he claim poisoned him? What are some of the mysterious circumstances surrounding his death?
SEARCH TERMS: Alexander Litvinenko

ECONOMICS – Milton Friedman
TOPIC: Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman has passed away. What policy work of Friedman’s earned him the Nobel Prize? What colonial-era American economist did Friedman most admire?
SEARCH TERMS: Milton Friedman

ENVIRONMENT – UN Climate Conference
TOPIC: A two-week UN Conference on Climate Change has recently concluded. Who attended the conference? What was the outcome of the conference?
SEARCH TERMS: “U.N. Conference on Climate Change”

TOPIC: Congressman Charlie Rangel from New York is pushing to reinstate the draft as a possible solution to raising the troop levels in Iraq. What has been the response of the Democratic Party to Congressman Rangel? What are the arguments for and against the draft? When was the last time the draft was in place in the United States?
SEARCH TERMS: draft AND military

CRIME AND LAW – Wiretap Review
TOPIC: The Inspector General of the Justice Department has announced plans to review the department’s warrantless surveillance program. What will this review entail and specifically not entail? Which government agency conducts the wiretapping?
SEARCH TERMS: U.S. Justice Department AND electronic surveillance

EDUCATION – Rhodes Scholars
TOPIC: Rhodes scholarships are awarded in November. What are the criteria for choosing the winners from the applicants? For who is the scholarship named?
SEARCH TERMS: Rhodes scholars

HISTORY – Vietnam War and Iraq
TOPIC: President Bush has recently finished his first visit to Vietnam where he took part in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting. Bush made some comparisons in his speeches between the war in Iraq and the war between the U.S. and North Vietnam. What were his comparisons? How have the wars been compared by historians?
SEARCH TERMS: George W. Bush AND Vietnam

HEALTH – Staph Infections
TOPIC: A quickly rising problem for both school and professional athletes has been a sharp rise in skin bacteria that results in staph infections. What has happened to these bacteria to exacerbate the problem? Why are athletes particularly at risk?
SEARCH TERMS: staphylococcal infections

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY – Genetically Engineered Rice
TOPIC: The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved an experimental variety of genetically engineered rice as safe for human consumption. What is the primary controversial issue surrounding this decision? What has been the international response to the recent controversy?
SEARCH TERMS: genetically-engineered food AND rice

SPORTS – FIFA Lifts Ban on Iran
TOPIC: The Federation of International Football Association has removed a ban in Iran’s soccer league, The Islamic Republic of Iran Football Federation, allowing them to compete in the 2006 Asian Games. What was the issue surrounding the ban? What convinced FIFA to lift the ban?
SEARCH TERMS: Federation of International Football Association AND Iran

SPORTS – Willie Pep
TOPIC: Featherweight Willie Pep was twice the world champion and is listed as one of the 5 best boxers of the 20th Century by the Associated Press. How many fights did Pep win during his career? What about Pep’s childhood is often credited for his toughness?

SPORTS – Johan Santana
TOPIC: Johan Santana, the left-handed pitcher for the Minnesota Twins, is this year’s American League Cy Young award. What does the Cy Young award recognize? What is unusual about Johan Santana winning this award?
SEARCH TERMS: Johan Santana

SPORTS – Jimmy Johnson wins Nextel Cup
TOPIC: NASCAR driver Jimmy Johnson is the declared winner of this year’s Nextel Cup. What other major NASCAR races has Johnson won this year? What is the significance of the Nextel Cup to NASCAR racing?

TOPIC: Emilio Estevez has directed an all-star cast in a film remembering the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy. What approach does Estevez take to presenting the day of the assassination? How is the actual character of Kennedy presented?
SEARCH TERMS: Bobby AND film AND Emilio Estevez

TOPIC: Benny Andrews, an expressionistic painter whose work was inspired by African-American life in Georgia has died. What causes did Andrews effectively champion during his lifetime? What other career did Andrews hold?
SEARCH TERMS: Benny Andrews

LITERATURE – Bebe Moore Campbell
TOPIC: Novelist Bebe Moore Campbell explored race relations in her works. What are some of Campbell’s more popular books? What did Campbell hope to do for race relations in her fiction?
SEARCH TERMS: Bebe Moore Campbell

PERFORMING ARTS – American Music Awards
TOPIC: The Black Eyed Peas won the most awards at this year’s American Music Awards. How many awards did they win? In what categories were the awards? What prevents the Black Eyed Peas from winning in the upcoming Grammy Awards?
SEARCH TERMS: “Black Eyed Peas” AND music

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