The choice between preventing AIDS by teaching abstinence or by distributing condoms is a false choice, Democratic senator Barack Obama of Illinois said to a mostly evangelical conference held at the southern California megachurch founded by pastor-author Rick Warren.
Both methods for dealing with HIV/AIDS should be used to their fullest extent, said Obama, a man increasingly touted by admirers as presidential material.
The high-profile conference with videotaped messages from rock star Bono and philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates coincided with World AIDS Day December 1. Held at Warren’s Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California, the meeting also, in the view of some religious right figures, presented a poor choice of speakers.
There is an 80 percent chance that later in this century a megadrought will plague the American Southwest for decades, according to a study released by researchers at NASA and at Columbia and Cornell universities. The drought will be caused by reduced precipitation and changes in evaporation rates. The researchers say other factors, such as the El Niño weather pattern, could interrupt long periods of severe drought. The researchers say there is time to reduce the factors contributing to climate change (Washington Post, February 12).