Lack Of Education Leads To Lost Dreams And Low Income For Many Jehovah’s Witnesses

Zachary Linderer said he wanted to go to college to major in the field of science, but growing up as a Jehovah

When it comes to education, not all religions are created equal. Jehovah’s Witnesses have the lowest rate of formal education. And that can have a detrimental effect on those who leave the religion.

(Image credit: Courtesy Luke Vander Ploeg )

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Leah Remini Says Tom Cruise Could ‘Singlehandedly’ End Scientology

Does Scientology entirely depend on Tom Cruise??

Leah Remini went on HBO‘s Real Time and talked candidly to host Bill Maher about the religion on Friday night — and some of the things she had to say about Cruise and the church were fascinating!!

Related: Scientologists Are Forced To Do WHAT?!

The full interview can be seen here (above), but even within it, there are a couple of major points upon which to focus: namely, how Remini alleges that it’s Cruise himself who could end all the Scientology controversy — and the religion itself.

Here’s an interesting interchange on that exact subject (below):

Maher: “He [Cruise] could end this singlehandedly.”

Remini: “He could end this. Correct. And because they are saying he singlehandedly is clearing the planet, is changing the planet, so most Scientologists believe.”

Maher: “Clearing the planet? He couldn’t even make Jack Reacher a hit.”

Remini: “Scientologists believe that if he didn’t make it a hit it was because there were suppressive, evil people working against him, because he’s winning in life and clearing the planet.”

Inneresting…

Related: Church Of Scientology Furious At ‘Hypocritical’ A&E

Remini went further, too, alleging that Maher’s own 2008 documentary Religulous played a big role in her realizing all the bad in Scientology.

She told the host:

“Scientologists are not allowed to look at things like this. We’re not allowed to look or listen to people who are critics of Scientology. I watched it because I was a troublemaker, apparently, always. What you were revealing in your documentary, I wasn’t even at that level yet. So you seemed a little crazy to me, because I didn’t know what you were saying was true, so I was, like, ‘That shit is crazy.'”

Now, not all can go and be ignored, however.

Scientology spokeswoman Karen Pouw provided a statement to the Hollywood Reporter about Remini, saying:

“The Church has published a website responding to Leah Remini’s bigotry, http://www.leahreminiaftermath.com. Leah Remini has become what she once declared she never wanted to be known as: “this bitter ex-Scientologist.” As USA Today wrote, Ms. Remini is “as famous for being an ex-Scientologist as she is as an actress” who is pathetically exploiting her former religion, her former friends and other celebrities for money and attention to appear relevant again.”

Well OK then!

Keep doing your thing, Leah!

In Times Square, Protesters Take To The Streets To Say ‘I Am Muslim Too’

Amal Bajes, sporting a printed American flag hijab, was at the "I Am Muslim Too" rally in New York City

At a rally in New York City on Sunday, protesters filled three city blocks to express solidarity with Muslims and to speak out against President Trump’s immigration ban.

(Image credit: Kat Chow/NPR)

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SpaceX Successfully Launches Rocket From NASA’s Historic Moon Pad

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A SpaceX rocket soared from NASA’s long-idled moonshot pad Sunday, sending up space station supplies from the exact spot where astronauts embarked on the lunar landings nearly a half-century ago.

It was the first flight from NASA’s legendary Launch Complex 39A since the shuttle program ended almost six years ago, and SpaceX’s first liftoff from Florida since a rocket explosion last summer.

The crowds at Kennedy Space Center watched eagerly as the unmanned Falcon 9 rocket took flight with a cargo ship bound for the International Space Station. They got barely 10 seconds of viewing before clouds swallowed up the Falcon as it thundered skyward.

As an extra special treat, SpaceX landed its leftover booster back at Cape Canaveral eight minutes after liftoff, a feat accomplished only twice before. Most of SpaceX’s eight successful booster landings — rocket recycling at its finest — have used ocean platforms. As they did during the shuttle era, sonic booms heralded Sunday’s return.

SpaceX employees at company flight headquarters in Southern California cheered as the 15-story booster landed upright at its designated parking spot at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

SpaceX chief Elon Musk celebrated the successful touchdown via Twitter.

“Baby came back,” he tweeted.

The celebratory roar grew when the Dragon cargo ship successfully reached orbit a couple minutes later. It will reach the space station Wednesday, delivering 5,500 pounds of food, clothes and experiments.

It was SpaceX’s second launch attempt in a row. Saturday’s effort was foiled by last-minute rocket concerns. The repairs paid off, and even the clouds parted enough to ensure a safe flight.

Musk said he’s honored to use Launch Complex 39A. The company hopes to launch astronauts from this very spot next year, bringing U.S. crew launches back to home soil after a longer-than-intended hiatus. SpaceX Mars missions, first robots then people, could follow from here.

If the pad weathered Sunday’s launch well, another Falcon could be standing there for a satellite send-up in just two weeks.

Kennedy Space Center’s director Robert Cabana, a former shuttle commander who flew four times from 39A, is thrilled to see the pad used for commercial flights like this “instead of just sitting out there and rusting away.” It’s a stark contrast, he noted, to the depression that followed the final shuttle mission in 2011.

“It’s just really an exciting time,” Cabana said just before liftoff.

It was a momentous comeback for SpaceX. The last time SpaceX had a rocket ready to fly from Cape Canaveral, it blew up on a neighboring pad during prelaunch testing on Sept. 1. Although the company successfully returned to flight last month from California, the focus was on getting leased Launch Complex 39A ready for action given that the pad with the accident was left unusable. The damaged pad should be back in action later this year.

Built in the mid-1960s for the massive Saturn V moon rockets, Launch Complex 39A has now seen 95 launches. Apollo 11’s Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins left Earth from here on July 16, 1969, on the first moon-landing mission. The very first space shuttle pilots, John Young and Robert Crippen, soared from here on April 12, 1981. And in a grand shuttle finale, Atlantis took off from here on July 8, 2011.

NASA signed over 39A to SpaceX in 2014 under a 20-year lease.

SpaceX has spent tens of millions of dollars to make 39A Falcon-ready. By the time astronauts climb into a Dragon capsule to fly to the space station, Shotwell said, pad renovations will exceed $100 million.

Last week, the U.S. Government Accountability Office warned the commercial crew launches by SpaceX and Boeing are at risk of slipping into 2019. “The hell we won’t fly before 2019,” SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell told reporters in response.

In a tweet Saturday, Musk said the company has already “retired” so much research and development risk on the crew Dragon capsule “that I feel very confident of 2018.”

As for the second-stage steering issue that cropped up Saturday, SpaceX hustled to replace an engine part before Sunday morning’s try. Musk said he personally called Saturday’s launch off, saying he was unwilling to risk something going wrong.

For SpaceX employees long accustomed to breaking new ground, Sunday was “a huge deal for us,” according to SpaceX’s Dragon mission manager, Jessica Jensen.

“I’m sure the team will be out celebrating,” Jensen told reporters. “We’ll be out tonight if you want to find us.”

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Drake Slams Kanye West In Long-Standing Feud: ‘I’m Not Really Sure What He’s Referring To Half The Time’

This has taken a while to come to a head, but now, here we are.

Drake went on to OVO Radio with DJ Semtex to do an interview this weekend, and in doing so, the Canadian superstar clapped back HARD at Kanye West in response to the pair’s long-simmering feud of sorts.

If you’ll remember, last year, Yeezy called out Drake as being ‘overplayed’ during the St. Pablo tour. Of course, Yeezy was going through some pretty serious personal problems at the time, but the comments still cut deep — and now Drake is responding.

Related: Jennifer Lopez Says She Has So Much ‘Love’ For Drake

Here’s what the former Degrassi star had to say about Yeezy:

“I think everybody has their own little things going on, I’m not really sure what he’s referring to half the time, as in the same breath, I went from being … like working on a project with him, to him sort of publicly shitting on me and DJ Khaled for being on the radio too much. But yeah I’m not really sure, everybody’s got their own thing going on. Again me when I hear that, I just distance myself from it. You know, alright if that’s what it is I don’t really even understand the point you’re trying to make but whatever it is that you’re going through, I accept it, I don’t respect it at all.”

And it sounds like Drake took ‘Ye’s targeting pretty personally, too (below):

“I feel like me and Khaled are just good people, I’m not sure why we’re the target of your choice that you made that night.”

Wow!!

Related: The Grammys Were Pretty Political This Year!

Seems like Drake could’ve been even more pointed — but perhaps considering what Yeezy went through after calling him out, well, there’s some better context there that Kanye wasn’t in the right state of mind when he made those comments.

Regardless, the feud continues to move along, however slowly…

[Image via TNYF/WENN.]

Trump’s Sweden comment referred to ‘rising crime’, White House says

President appeared to refer to a non-existent terror attack in the country during a rally on Saturday in Florida, prompting questions from Swedish officials

The White House has said Donald Trump was speaking about general “rising crime” when he seemed to describe a non-existent terror attack in Sweden on Saturday night, as the president defended his ideas about banning refugees and travel from seven Muslim-majority countries.

“You look at what’s happening in Germany. You look at what’s happening last night in Sweden,” the president said at a rally in Melbourne, Florida, on Saturday night. “Sweden. Who would believe this? Sweden. They took in large numbers. They’re having problems like they never thought possible.”

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‘Impeach President Bannon’ street art protest takes aim at Trump’s controversial chief strategist

‘Impeach President Bannon’ street art protest takes aim at Trump’s controversial chief strategistA sign protesting “President Bannon” is seen in San Francisco. “Impeach President Bannon” posters were spotted in Washington, New York City and several other major cities on Sunday, part of a Presidents’ Day weekend demonstration against President Trump’s controversial White House chief strategist and senior adviser, Steve Bannon. “No one voted for Steve Bannon,” the California-based organizers of the protest wrote in an email to Yahoo News.