8 Things You Need To Know This AM — Nov 17 2015

Photo: GHNASSIA/NMA2016/SIPA/REX Shutterstock.
The governors of several U.S. states refuse to accept Syrian refugees in the wake of the Paris attacks. Multiple U.S. governors are using the tragic attacks in Paris to justify their rejection of President Barack Obama’s resettlement plans for around 100,000 Syrians, as well as other refugees. Since it has been suggested that one of the attackers entered Europe, after falsely identifying himself as a Syrian refugee, the governors of Alabama, Michigan, Texas, and Louisiana, and more, have announced they will block Syrian relocation in their states. (Refinery29)
The widower of a 9/11 hero returned his wife’s Woman of the Year award after Caitlyn Jenner received the same honor. In 2001, Moria Smith was posthumously named one of Glamour’s Women of the Year for sacrificing her own life, to lead over 100 people out of the World Trade Center on September 11th. This year, Caitlyn Jenner was one of the recipients for acting as a "Trans Champion.” After the recent ceremony, Smith’s husband decided to return the 2001 award. (Refinery29)
About 1,500 Mormons have left the church over its new same-sex marriage policy.

The Church of Latter-day Saints is experiencing an exodus after releasing a new policy that labels same-sex couples “apostates,” or traitors of the church, and bans the children of same-sex couples from baptism and church membership until they’re 18. According to the guidelines, if a same-sex couple’s child wishes to join the church, they would first have to repudiate “the practice of same-gender cohabitation and marriage.” In protest of the policy, approximately 1,500 Mormons gathered in Salt Lake City to publicly resign from the church. (Refinery29)
Baltimore’s total number of homicides surpasses 300 for the year. A fatal stabbing in West Baltimore and a fatal shooting in the neighborhood of Westport helped Baltimore reach a grim milestone: for the first time since 1999, the city’s annual homicide toll topped 300. “The 300th homicide is no more tragic than the first homicide of 2015, or the 50th, or the 200th,” said Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. (Baltimore Sun)
Oxford Dictionaries’ international "Word of the Year" isn't a word, it's an emoji. For the first time in the Oxford English Dictionary’s history, a word wasn’t selected for 2015’s "Word of the Year." This year, the crown was taken by a picture: the “Face with Tears of Joy” emoji. “Emoji are becoming an increasingly rich form of communication, one that transcends linguistic borders,” said Caspar Grathwohl, president of Oxford Dictionaries. Take that, words. You’re so 2000 and late. (Time)
Hacker group Anonymous pledged to launch its “biggest operation ever” against ISIS in light of the Paris attacks. The hacker collective Anonymous, most known for targeting the Church of Scientology, and single-handedly supporting the Guy Fawkes mask industry, has declared “total war” on ISIS, unveiling what it calls #OpParis. Inspired to action after the Paris attacks, Anonymous released a video detailing its plans to “neutralize” the Islamic State group with “massive cyber attacks.” (Refinery29)
Georgetown University will rename two campus buildings originally named after slaveowners, following multiple student protests. A number of student protests and a proposal written by the Working Group on Slavery, Memory and Reconciliation have convinced officials at Georgetown University to rename two campus buildings. They both have the monikers of former university presidents, who sold slaves to pay off the school’s debt. As new names are floated and voted on, Mulledy Hall and McSherry Hall will be referred to as Freedom Hall and Remembrance Hall in the interim. (Think Progress)
Adele just gave us a sneak peek of her new song called "When We Were Young." In a preview for an interview with 60 Minutes Australia, the singer plays a track, "When We Were Young" from her upcoming album. Unfortunately, the sample is 60 seconds long, not 60 minutes. But oh, it is a glorious minute. (Refinery29)

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