Watching the World

An estimated 200 million people, 5 percent of the world’s population between the ages of 15 and 64, have consumed illegal drugs in the last year.​—2005 WORLD DRUG REPORT, UNITED NATIONS OFFICE ON DRUGS AND CRIME.

An adolescent who witnesses firearm violence, studies indicate, is approximately twice as likely to perpetrate violence within the next two years.​—SCIENCE MAGAZINE, U.S.A.

In São Paulo, Brazil, 16.8 percent of breast cancer cases diagnosed at one hospital during a one-year period occurred in women under age 35. If diagnosed early, there is a 90 percent chance of recovery.​—FOLHA ONLINE, BRAZIL.

Combating Boredom

Researchers studying boredom call it “one of the major diseases of our era,” reports The Vancouver Sun. One survey found that “almost three out of four North Americans say they crave more novelty in their lives.” Among the newspaper’s suggestions to combat boredom are: “Make changes to break out of your rut,” “learn something new,” do “meaningful volunteer work,” “engage in motor activities, like . . . taking a walk,” and “practice gratitude.”

Modern Slavery

“At least 12.3 million people are victims of forced labour worldwide,” reports a United Nations International Labor Organization (ILO) study. It is estimated that of these, more than 2.4 million are victims of human trafficking. Examples of forced labor​—involuntary work or services performed under compulsion by threat—​are prostitution, military service, and bonded labor for which workers earn little or nothing, since their wages are retained to pay off a debt. According to ILO Director General Juan Somavia, such labor “denies people their basic rights and dignity.”

First Complete Kriol Bible

“Australia’s first translation of the Bible from Genesis through to Revelation into an indigenous language has been completed,” reports The Sydney Morning Herald. The new Kriol translation, due for release in 2007, will benefit some 30,000 Aborigines from remote regions of Northern Australia. “The project has been 27 years in the making,” says the newspaper. According to the United Bible Societies, “22 new translations of the New Testament were registered in 2004.” The Bible can now be read in whole or in part in 2,377 languages and dialects.

Temperatures in Parked Cars

During 2004, 35 children died of heat stroke in the United States after being left in parked vehicles, says Pediatrics magazine. Studies show that when outside temperatures exceed 86 degrees Fahrenheit [30°C], temperatures inside a vehicle can quickly reach 134 to 154 degrees [57 to 68°C]. Even with an outside temperature of 72 degrees [22°C], the temperature in a car can still rise by about 40 degrees [22°], with most of the increase taking place within 15 to 30 minutes after parking. Leaving the windows one and a half inches [4 cm] open made little difference, as did running air-conditioning before turning the car off. The authors of the article believe that public awareness of the risks could save lives.