Any news service graphics are links to their sites, some pictures too.

Various, all the time in '99

With so much hype and special significance being given to the year 2000, one needs to put the whole number thing in perspective...

Our year 2000 on the Christian calendar is:

 A.M. 5760/5761 in the Hebrew calendar,
A.H. 1420/1421 in the Islamic calendar,
4698 in the Chinese calendar,
2544 in the Buddhist calendar,
2753 in the Old Roman calendar, and
1716 in the Coptic calendar.

On TV Violence
Reuters, May 28/99

"In all the police records I've ever examined, I've never seen a 30-inch Sony listed as a murder weapon." -- ``Law & Order'' creator DICK WOLF, on political outbursts against violence on television. He may be right, but it likely could be listed as an accomplice.

'Satanic Ritual' Stabbing, May 28/99

A 17-year-old accused of repeatedly stabbing a friend he asked to participate in a satanic ritual faces up to life in prison.

Authorities said the two struck up an acquaintance through e-mail and an interest in satanic Web sites. The two (who met in a wooded area along with at least two others) sliced their hands, mixed their blood and drew a pentagram in the dirt while chanting. Darrel Harris then allegedly took the bloodshed one step farther and turned the butcher knife on Menendez, striking him as many as nine times in the neck.

For more on modern versions of Satanism check out our new book on the influence of occult. (See John 8:44; John 10:10)

Television Influence?
Reuters, May 19/99

A sudden increase in eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia among teenage girls on Fiji appears to be linked to the arrival of television in the Pacific island nation in 1995, Harvard researchers said.

Some 74% of Fijian girls reported feeling "too big or fat" in a 1998 survey (Anne) Becker conducted 38 months after the country's one television station began broadcasting. It airs British, New Zealand and U.S. programs such as Seinfeld, ER, Melrose Place and Zena: Warrior Princess.

Traditionally, Fijians have preferred what Becker called a "robust, well-muscled body" for both sexes. With television's advent on the island (which didn't even have electricity until 1985), adolescent girls became more aware of Western ideal of beauty.

"Nobody was dieting in Fiji 10 years ago," Becker said, adding that at the end of almost every interview with teen-age girls they asked about dieting. "The teen-agers see TV as a model for how one gets by in the modern world. They believe the shows depict reality," she said.

We have seen the effects of how media has shaped our society for decades now — it isn't a pretty sight. (Psalms 119:37)

Edited by Brent MacDonald of Lion Tracks Ministries. All editiorial comment is in italics. (c) 1999. Feel free to duplicate as long as the sources are cited.