Latitude News brings you a round-up of articles from U.S. news outlets that connect America to the rest of the world.
Life on the lam
The bizarre tale of John McAfee has taken a new twist as the controversial tech entrepreneur has chosen Portland, Oregon for his new home.
McAfee fled his home in the Central American nation of Belize in November after his neighbor, another American expatriate, was shot to death. McAfee was eventually arrested hiding out in the jungles of next-door Guatemala and deported to Miami. Police in Belize still want to question him in connection with the murder. Now, in an interview with The Oregonian, McAfee says he plans to make Portland his new home as he works with a local illustrator on a nonfiction graphic novel about his time in Belize.
The inventor of McAfee anti-virus software lived a strange life in the tropics, allegedly experimenting with drugs and hosting wild orgies.
“Living with one woman is horrific,” he tells The Oregonian. “Living with two is nightmarish, but you get past five and suddenly they’re entertaining themselves, really.”
The prime minister of Belize says McAfee is “bonkers.”
Baby girl finds new home in Miami after being buried alive in Haiti
A three-year-old girl who spent five days buried in the debris of Haiti’s disastrous earthquake has found a new life with her family in Miami. Jenny Alexis became a symbol of a nation’s heartbreak after being pulled from the rubble of Port-au-Prince three years ago — that earthquake took 300,000 lives.
“For us, we thought it was the end,” her father, Junior, tells The Miami Herald. “People were walking in front of you and they only had half a limb; the same place you would fall asleep is where you would wake up the next day and the person next to you had died.”
After her rescue, Jenny was airlifted to a hospital in Miami. It took months before a DNA test and a court hearing reunited her with her parents, who were allowed to come to America, where life hasn’t been easy. The family struggles to get by on Junior’s salary of $8.50 an hour as a dishwasher at an Italian restaurant. They are expecting another baby.
But for Jenny and her parents, life is incomparably better than if they had remained in Haiti.
“The people are living without hope,” Junior explains “When I listen to the news and I hear about all the aid that was given, I thought there would have been a lot more people who would have found improvement in their lives.”
French language school seeks to expand in Kansas City
At the Académie Lafayette in Kansas City it’s all “bonjour” and “s’il vous plaît,” merci beaucoup. That’s “thank you very much,” as the 700 students at Lafayette, a French immersion school, could tell you. Classes are conducted entirely in French. The school has grown rapidly since it opened in 1999, but neighbors strongly oppose plans to construct an addition to its building, according to an article in the Kansas City Star.
“It is good to know that this school is healthy. And they are trying to be a good neighbor, keeping us informed about what they are doing. But my big concern is traffic,” says John Kilby, who lives across the road from the school.
Académie Lafayette has raised more than half of its $3 million goal to fund the classroom expansion. Currently an K-8 school, it is considering adding a high school. Académie Lafayette has earned a reputation as an academic high-achiever. The Star reports that more than 80 percent of students passed or earned honors on a state math test, and 90 percent did so on their humanities exam. Now the school wants to share its success with other kids.
“Some parents stated they would like to keep Académie Lafayette as a neighborhood school, but it is not a neighborhood school,” explains Terry Riley, president of the school’s parent-teacher association. “It is a school for all kids in the Kansas City school district.”
What’s a French language school doing in Kansas City anyway? Latitude News will do some digging into Académie Lafayette and bring you the story.
Any readers out there attend language immersion school? Do you think it help or hurt your education? Let us know in the comments section below.