Good News Friday

It’s Friday again, and a day for good news. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been looking forward to a little pick-me-up. So here’s a rundown of some great things happening:

Anti-Trafficking Laws Passed in Tennessee

On Tuesday, the governor of my favorite state signed a series of bills meant to protect victims of human trafficking. The laws, which passed unanimously, state that minors can no longer be prosecuted for prostitution and will be viewed as victims instead. While a minor’s actions may look voluntary, he or she has often been abused, drugged, manipulated, or threatened. The law also beefs up punishment for traffickers and johns.

One of my favorite parts: in a thrifty move, the law covers the increased cost of the traffickers’ incarceration with all their nasty pimp goods like SUVs and flatscreen TVs that law enforcement can now confiscate.

Bhutanese Refugees Creating Community in Nashville

In another piece of good news out of Tennessee, Bhutan’s significant refugee population is finding a place to resettle in the state’s capital of Nashville. Bhutan is a small Himalayan kingdom that, due to ethnic and religious persecution, has seen over 100,000 refugees flee into neighboring Nepal. In 2008, many of those refugees began to be resettled.

At first the newcomers really strained refugee services organizations; but over time they found each other and formed communities in major cities. Now non-profits are starting up specifically geared toward the Bhutanese people, and they are learning to lean on each other for assistance and cultural identity.

New York City Geese to Feed Philadelphia’s Neediest Citizens

Is this good news or not? I wasn’t totally sure at first, because it’s just plain weird; but after reading and re-reading the piece I’m going with good. It’s certainly a better option than gassing birds and dumping their bodies into landfills (something I had no idea was happening. Whoever signed on to that idea is an idiot at best). I also like that homeless families in Philly might have Christmas goose for the holidays this year. Sure, it’s a little Dickensian, but only in the most awesome way ever.

Happy early Father’s Day! Have a great weekend, folks!

(Photo by Sanja Gjenero.)

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