Trending In Our News Feeds – EU lifts Syria weapons ban. British Foreign Secretary William Hague revealed yesterday the EU will lift its ban on arming Syrian rebels. The new agreement outlines protocol for sending weapons to Syria’s National Coalition in order to protect civilians. While Britain does not plan to send weapons to rebels immediately, Hague said, “It was important for Europe to send a clear signal to the Assad regime that it has to negotiate seriously, and that all options remain on the table if it refuses to do so.” Some fear weapons assistance would increase the violence in Syria. “[It’s beyond] belief, the idea that … pouring more arms into this conflict… would not escalate the violence,” said Member of Parliament John Baron.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) revealed the senator crossed the Syrian border to meet with rebel groups on Memorial Day. Reuters says the move may increase pressure on Obama to intervene in Syria.
Colombia takes first step towards peace. The Colombian government and rebels from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) reached a landmark deal on Sunday that calls for the development of rural areas. This is the first deal the parties have reached in six months of negotiations. The negotiators hope to make deals on four more points: the political participation of rebels, disarmament, limiting the Colombian drug trade, and support for the victims of the conflict. FARC has clashed with the Colombian government for more than 50 years in an effort to put a Marxist regime in power. The government’s chief negotiator said, “Today we have a real opportunity to attain peace through dialogue.” The BBC breaks down everything you need to know about the peace talks.
Obama promises to help tornado victims. President Obama vowed to provide extended aid to those affected by last week’s horrific tornado during a visit to Moore, Oklahoma on Sunday. Speaking next to a destroyed school, Obama said, “Everywhere, fellow Americans are praying with you, they're thinking about you and they want to help. And I'm just a messenger here letting you know that you are not alone.” The tornado destroyed more than 1,200 homes, two schools, and a hospital. A disaster-modeling company estimates $2-5 billion of damage.
Rogers makes history as openly gay, active athlete. Robbie Rogers became the first openly gay male athlete to compete in a U.S. team sport when he played in the L.A. Galaxy’s 4-0 rout of the Seattle Sounders on Sunday. After the game, Rogers tweeted, “I won’t ever forget tonight! I love my new home.” Rogers’ return to professional soccer increases the chances an openly gay male athlete will play in professional sports in the coming years. Nate Silver gives out basketball player Jason Collins a 61% chance of playing in the NBA next year.
Status Updates – Get to know pundit of the week Lindsay Funk! Superstar pundit Lindsay is a new junkie, a vegan chef, and Arabic speaker. Find out why she joined PolicyMic, how she writes awesome stories on religion and international relations, and what she does in her time offline.
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Must Reads From PolicyMic – The Studies Are In, and Obamacare is Failing Miserably (Sam Dorman, @Freedorman) – President Obama bet trillions of dollars in a gamble to reform the U.S. healthcare system. Early results show it's a big flop.
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“Punching Your Girlfriend in the Face” and Other Pages Facebook Thinks Are “Funny” (Medha Chandorkar, @MedhaChandorkar) – While Facebook zealously blocks all racist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic content, pages that encourage rape and gendered violence are protected under Facebook’s guidelines.
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8 Life Lessons We Learned From Chandler Bing (Shwetika Baijal, @shwetika) – Chandler is one of our favorite TV characters of all time. Here are eight lessons he’s taught us.
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How I Respond to Those Who Are Making Gay New Yorkers Fear For Our Lives (Kevin Nadal, @kevinnadal) – There have been eight anti-gay hate crimes in New York City over the past three weeks. What can be done to stop this rising hatred?
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Lawyers Are Using Every Racist Stereotype Imaginable to Smear Trayvon Martin (Matthew Rozsa) – George Zimmerman’s attorneys have used shameful tactics in an attempt to portray Trayvon Martin as a dangerous, threatening black man.
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What We’re Sharing – Why do we turn everything into an essay (even after we’re out of college)? (NY Times)
Find out what’s next for immigration reform (New Yorker).
How 3D printing could take over the manufacturing industry (The Week).
How txting is killing language (TED).
You won’t believe how much time emergency room workers spend on Facebook (Washington Post).
A huge number of millennials regret going to college (Forbes).
13 inventors who were killed by their own creations (io9).
50 famous quotes everyone gets completely wrong (Mental Floss).
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