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Review: ‘Kangaroo: A Love-Hate Story’ Explores Unchartered Territory

For kangaroos, life down under is far from idyllic.

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On Tuesday, January 23, the Laemelle Music Hall, Los Angeles’s home to indie films and documentaries, opened its doors to welcome the cast and crew of Kangaroo: A Love-Hate Story for its theatrical debut.

Produced by married duo Kate McIntyre Clere and Mick McIntyre, the movie presents a critical view of how kangaroos are treated in Australia. While kangaroos are upheld as a national symbol for the country, many Australians view them as everyday, disposable pests, leading to a mass-killing of the marsupials.

As the film later reveals, the killing of the kangaroos is conducted in unsanitary and inhumane ways, with bacteria-infested meat being sold for human and dog consumption. The film also reveals inconsistent and nonsensical means to track the country’s population of kangaroos from the Australian government, creating an unsustainable demand in the global market for kangaroo meat.

The film is not for those with weak stomachs or faint hearts, as the filmmakers unflinchingly demonstrate the extent of the issue through graphic footage.

In Australia, ordinary citizens can obtain a professional kangaroo shooter’s license, where they are able to freely kill kangaroos in exchange for profit from meat corporations or clothing companies that utilize their meat.  These killings are done in grotesque, cruel measures with little accountability — from leaving bloody heads in open fields to killing a mother kangaroo and leaving the baby joey to die within its mother’s decaying body.

While it may seem improbable to believe such inhumane acts can be accepted in 2018, the Australian government continues to lobby states like California, who is the only state in the country to ban exports of kangaroo meat, while pushing continued sales in Russia and the European Union.

What makes the film unique is the willingness of the directors to step foot into uncharted territory, and to launch conversations about taboo topics. The filmmakers, who are Australian themselves, point out that within the country, kangaroos remain a highly controversial issue. This is demonstrated in the film, as interviews with Australian scholars, citizens and politicians debate on whether the kangaroo is a pest to be dealt with or a friend to be protected.

Australia is known externally for being an animal-loving country, and through documentaries like this, global conversations can begin about protecting, not exploiting, their national symbol.

It takes courage to expose what is done in darkness, and the directors carry the narratives of indigenous Australians, politicians, activists, scientists, and community organizers with an unshakeable belief that with enough voices speaking out about the issue, a better future can be paved for the kangaroo.

Julia is an undergraduate student at the University of California, Riverside, studying Public Policy with an emphasis in Social and Cultural Policy. While she’s currently on a gap year to help with Hurricane Harvey relief, Julia is a 5x author, a contributor for the Los Angeles Times, and frequent visitor of Disneyland. You can contact her at juliaschemmer@gmail.com.

Entertainment

Solange Chosen as Harvard Foundation Artist of the Year

Solange will be honored at a Harvard Foundation award ceremony in March.

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The Harvard Foundation has selected Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Solange Knowles as its Artist of the Year.

Every year, the Harvard Foundation’s student and faculty choose an artist to be honored. Past recipients of the title have included artists such as Shakira, Will Smith, Salma Hayek, Matt Damon, Jackie Chan and John Legend. The Foundation’s mission is to promote diversity, inclusion and equity throughout Harvard University’s community.

Solange is a distinguished artist who landed her first No. 1 album on the Billboard Top 200 chart with her 2016 release “A Seat on the Table.” In 2017, she also received a Billboard Impact Award and was named one of Glamour’s Women of the Year. In December, she announced in an Instagram post that her New Year’s Eve show in South Africa would be canceled due to her struggles with an autonomic disorder.

Wrote, deleted and re wrote this like 5 times… Still not sure what exactly or how much I want to share… However it’s so important to me for the people in South Africa, a place that has tremendous meaning to me and that has given me SO SO MUCH, to know why I won’t be performing at Afro Punk this NYE. The past five months I have been quietly treating, and working through an Autonomic Disorder. It been a journey that hasn’t been easy on me… Sometimes I feel cool, and other times not so cool at all. It’s a complicated diagnoses , and I’m still learning so much myself, but right now, my doctors are not clearing me for such an extended lengthy flight, and doing a rigorous show right after. I can’t put into words how saddened and sorry I am that I am unable to perform for you guys this NYE, there is simply no other place I wanted to be than there with my family to bring in 2018 with you…….but I give you my ABSOLUTE WORD I will come back with AfroPunk and deliver this performance…..as it is so extremely important to me to connect with the people who have so closely inspired me in so many ways. I can’t thank Afro Punk enough for their support, and to all of the other festivals this past summer/fall who have known about my health, kept it confidential, and gone out of their way to make me feel supported while doing these shows. As a part of the self care that I’ve tried to encourage this past year, it needs to start with myself, and I’m looking forward to doing a better job of this 2018. This past year has been one of the most fulfilling of my life… Performing this record and experiencing the energy exchange with you guys has been astounding, and I’m so excited about continuing to do the work I feel so absolutely humbled and appreciative to be doing next year. It gives me life.

A post shared by Solange (@saintrecords) on

However, Solange is not going to let that stop her. “Performing this record and experiencing the energy exchange with you guys has been astounding, and I’m so excited about continuing to do the work I feel so absolutely humbled and appreciative to be doing next year. It gives me life,” she explained in her post.

Solange will be recognized at the Foundation’s Cultural Rhythms Festival annual award ceremony on Saturday, March 3. The festival celebrates cultural and ethnic diversity at Harvard and is attended by over 2,000 people each year.

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Entertainment

Here are all the Winners From the 2018 Westminster Dog Show

Because dogs are very important.

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Sporting Group:  Bean (Full Of Beans), Sussex Spaniel.

Hound Group: Lucy, a Borzoi.

Working Group:  Ty (Tynan Dances With Wildflowers), Giant Schnauzer.

Terrier Group:  Winston (Winning Ticket), Norfolk Terrier.

Toy Group: Biggie the Pug.

Herding Group: Slick, a Border Collie.

Non-Sporting Group: Flynn (All I Care About Is Love), Bichon Frise.

annnndddd…..

Best in Show:  Flynn (All I Care About Is Love), Bichon Frise.

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Entertainment

Snapchat Update Generates Lots of Hate

This is a story that might not disappear after 24 hours.

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Yesterday, Snapchat automatically updated millions of accounts across the globe. Without warning, users woke up to a different-looking version of the app, that is apparently messier and more confusing. This update has caused many longtime Snapchat fans to not only publicly complain, but also abandon the app for good.

According to The Guardian, the update has made over 700,000 people angry enough to sign a change.org petition requesting that Snapchat change their format back. The petition is aiming to reach one million signatures, and can be signed here.

Within hours, several videos have surfaced which explain both how to remove the update and how to cope with it. Watch them here:

Will Snap Inc listen to their dissatisfied users?

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