By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday takes up a free speech case on whether Texas was wrong in rejecting a specialty vehicle license plate displaying the Confederate flag - to some an emblem of Southern pride and to others a symbol of racism. The nine justices will hear a one-hour oral argument in a case that raises the issue of how states can allow or reject politically divisive messages on license plates without violating free speech rights. States can generate revenue by allowing outside groups to propose specialty license plates that people then pay a fee to put on their vehicle. The group Sons of Confederate Veterans says its aim is to preserve the "history and legacy" of soldiers who fought for the pro-slavery Confederacy in the U.S. Civil War.
Islamic State has posted online what it says are the names, U.S. addresses and photos of 100 American military service members, and called upon its "brothers residing in America" to kill them. In the posting, a group referring to itself as the "Islamic State Hacking Division" wrote in English that it had hacked several military servers, databases and emails and made public the information on 100 members of the U.S. military so that "lone wolf" attackers can kill them. The Times quoted officials as saying the list appeared to have been drawn from personnel mentioned in news articles about air strikes on Islamic State. The posting, addressed to disbelievers, Christians and "crusaders" in America, included what the group said were the names, military service branch, photos and street addresses of the individuals.
(Reuters) - A Florida mother will face charges of murdering her young children and attempting to murder her five-month-old baby, police said on Saturday, after arresting the woman holding a knife outside the home and finding the children inside. Jessica Lacey McCarty, 33, of Palm Bay, was being held without bond at the Brevard County Detention Center and would face a judge within 24 hours to be formally charged, police said. Palm Bay is on Florida's east coast just south of Cape Canaveral. Police have not said how they believe the children, ages six and seven, were killed.
By Laila Kearney NEW YORK (Reuters) - Seven children from an Orthodox Jewish family died early on Saturday when flames ripped through their Brooklyn home in one of New York City's deadliest fires in years, officials said. The two were taken to a local hospital and were in critical condition, New York Fire Department spokesman Michael Parrella said. The blaze erupted in the single-family dwelling around 12:30 a.m. It apparently was started accidentally by a hot plate, used by many Orthodox families to warm food on the Sabbath, said Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro. "This is an unbelievable tragedy," New York Mayor Bill de Blasio told reporters after seeing the devastation at the site of the blaze.
By Elvina Nawaguna COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Reuters) - President Barack Obama, a hoops fanatic who relishes the annual March Madness college basketball tournaments, on Saturday cheered on the undefeated Princeton women's team that includes his niece Leslie Robinson as the school's fans chanted "four more years." Obama, an avid basketball player, attended Princeton's 80-70 NCAA Tournament victory over the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay at the XFINITY Center arena in the Washington suburb of College Park, Maryland. The president was joined by his daughter Malia, his brother-in-law Craig Robinson, a former Princeton basketball star, his mother-in-law Marian Robinson and U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan, a former Harvard basketball star.
By Bryn Stole SUMNER, Miss. (Reuters) - Six decades after the brutal slaying of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black boy, the small Mississippi Delta town where two white men were acquitted of his murder is dedicating a museum to the event credited with helping spark the U.S. civil rights movement. The opening in Sumner on Saturday of the Emmett Till Interpretive Center is timed to coincide with the reopening across the town square of the refurbished Tallahatchie County Courthouse, where an all-white jury set Roy Bryant and J.W. Milan free after deliberating for one hour. Work on both projects in the struggling town of a few hundred people began after the Tallahatchie Board of Supervisors issued a formal apology over the Till affair in 2006. It also established the Emmett Till Memorial Commission to bring attention to a racially charged incident that had for decades gone mostly undiscussed locally, said commission co-chairman John Wilchie.