Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

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Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

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Editor's note: This report contains accounts of rape, violence and other disturbing events.

Sex trafficking wasn't a major concern in the early 1980s, when Beth Jacobs was a teenager. If you were a prostitute, the thinking went, it was your choice.

Jacobs thought that too, right up until she came to, on the lot of a dark truck stop one night. She says she had asked a friendly-seeming man for a ride home that afternoon.

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Tempest Over A Teapot: JC Penney Removes 'Hitler' Billboard

May 29, 2013
Originally published on May 29, 2013 6:45 pm

After receiving complaints that a billboard advertisement included an image resembling Adolf Hitler, JC Penney has reportedly taken the sign down. The move came after images of the billboard in California's Culver City spurred a controversy on Reddit and elsewhere online. The retailer says any resemblance to the late leader of the Third Reich was unintended.

"Several customers have taken to the Web to complain about a J.C. Penney billboard that's next to the 405 Freeway in Culver City," reported the Without A Net blog at member station KPCC Tuesday. "The problem: It kind of looks like Hitler."

Citing ABC-7 in Los Angeles, KPCC says the billboard has now been removed. The item is also no longer on the JC Penney website, although that could be because it has sold out.

The billboard promoted the Bells and Whistles Stainless Steel Tea Kettle, part of the store's collection by designer Michael Graves. But to some, the image of the kettle included dark details that could be taken to represent Hitler's iconic black mustache, parted hair, tie, and right arm raise in a Nazi salute.

"Totally unintentional." a JC Penney rep tweeted in response to a question about the kettle and the ad yesterday. "If we'd designed the kettle to look like something, we would've gone w/a snowman :)" The tweet included an image to illustrate their point.

But elsewhere on Twitter and other sites, people took to playing a game of sorts: reworking the lyrics of "I'm A Little Teapot" to include references to Hitler.

On JC Penney's Facebook page, at least one person didn't see what the fuss was about.

"People are so stupid!" said a customer named Leigh Anne. "That teapot doesn't look like Hitler anymore than I do."

In a poll, KPCC's readers were divided, with nearly 31 percent (as of noon EDT Wednesday) saying "Yes" to the question, "Does this JC Penney billboard in Culver City look like Hitler?"

Nearly a quarter of respondents said, "No, people are just imagining things."

As Without A Net's Mike Roe reports, "The item's notoriety also means that it sold out to all the Internet fans buying it ironically. (We hope they were purchasing it ironically.)"

Mike noted that while the kettle was no longer available online, reviews of it had been posted, including one that lauded its ability to boil water. Under "Cons," however, the customer had written, "Looks like Hitler."

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