When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.


'Buffalo Girls' Fight For Survival In Rural Thailand

Nov 15, 2012

It's no secret that, in many parts of the world, children don't experience what affluent Westerners would term "childhood." Still, even the most hardened documentary buffs may be dumbfounded by Buffalo Girls, a look at two 8-year-old Thai girls who support their respective families.

They do so by hitting each other in the head.

Stam and Pet compete in Muay Thai, a form of boxing in which kicking as well as punching is allowed. As depicted in fictional action movies, Muay Thai is both graceful and brutal. Practiced by 8-year-olds, it's neither.

Stam and Pet are not seriously injured in the bouts filmed here, although one adult observer acknowledges that broken arms and legs are fairly common among Thailand's 30,000 — yes, 30,000 — child boxers.

Director Todd Kellstein, an American music-video veteran, says that when he first saw Thai kids in boxing rings, he found the spectacle "horrible." Yet Buffalo Girls is not an expose or a polemic. It accepts that Stam and Pet — and their parents — have made an understandable choice, given the poverty of their families and regions. (At one point, the boxers travel for a bout to an urban red-light district, where the sight of writhing dancers suggests that there are worse ways for Thai girls to make some cash.)

In a rare bit of explication, the movie notes that "buffalo" has two connotations in Thailand. For rural folks, it refers to the strength and perseverance of the large animals, called "kwai" in Thai. To urbanites, however, a buffalo is a hick.

Stam and Pet are country girls, with few prospects for economic advancement. Each is in the 22-kilo (about 48-pound) weight class, which is lucrative because it draws enthusiastic bettors. They fight because, as Stam says, "I want lots of money to make my mom and dad happy."

Stam also goes to school, and helps her mother at the family's fruit and vegetable stand. But her parents' income is dwarfed by what she can earn from a four-round match. The family has a half-built house on its farm, and is counting on Stam's winnings to complete it.

Pet's earnings aren't pledged to any specific project, but her sacrifice to the family is perhaps even more impressive. She's struggled with a congenital heart defect, and had surgery two years before the documentary was filmed. To make an offering for Pet's continued survival, her mother shaved her head, save for two small patches of hair that are collected into pigtails.

Stam and Pet box three times during the movie, but this isn't Raging Buffalo. Kellstein shoots the fights from a distance, without close-ups of blows and injuries. Often, he strips away the combat sounds and crowd noises, replacing them with Scott Hackwith's ethereal music. The director is more interested in the family dynamic than the spectacle of little girls boxing.

That's understandable, in part because Stam and Pet fight like, well, small children. What the movie shows of their contests doesn't reveal any great skill. Their battles are all grit.

This suggests a question the director never poses: What's the appeal of such contests? "Girl fighting is a hit now," says one adult, which begins and ends the movie's commentary. Stam, Pet and their families don't seem to think much about what they're doing. Neither does Buffalo Girls.

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