(CNN Student News) -- September 15, 2010
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CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Hi! I'm Carl Azuz, this is CNN Student News, and if you don't know why a hurricane's winds turn in a certain direction, you are going to by the end of today's show.
AZUZ: First up, though, President Obama gives a speech for a very specific group of Americans: you! He talked directly to students in his second back-to-school address. He gave the speech yesterday at the Julia Masterman School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the president offered some suggestions that might sound familiar to you: do your homework, pay attention in class, show up on time. His main point was about the importance of education and to urge students to get the most out of their opportunities in school. Suzanne Malveaux was in Philadelphia for yesterday's speech. She has more on it for us right now. Suzanne?
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Carl. Well, President Obama picked Masterman School, one of the best schools here in Philadelphia, as the place to give his speech, his back-to-school speech for all the students around the country. Obviously, a lot of it was very encouraging, optimistic, encouraging students to pursue their education, that they are in control of their own destiny. The president also got personal, as well. We heard him talk about his own struggle with his identity when he was younger, being a product of a white mother and a black father, a father who was largely absent in his life. The president also talked about the fact that he wasn't always a good student; that he needed a little prodding from his own mother from time to time. And then, what was interesting, Carl, as well, the president talked about what it was like for young people and young students in the times, these hard economic times, and the mood of the country. Here's how the president related the two.
U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: I know a lot of you are also feeling the strain of some difficult times. You know what's going on in the news and you also know what's going on in some of your own families. You've read about the war in Afghanistan. You hear about the recession that we've been through, and sometimes maybe you're seeing the worries in your parents' faces or sense it in their voice.
Retail Sales Are Up
AZUZ: All right, well, for many Americans, back to school means back-to-school shopping. You've probably gotten most of yours done already. And experts think that is why retail sales were up last month. Around $363 billion in sales during the month of August. That is up .4 percent from July, and it's up 3.6 percent from last August. Could be a good sign for the economy. Back-to-school spending can give an idea of how holiday spending might go. But some analysts are saying don't jump the gun just yet. They point out that while spending is up a little bit, people are still holding back because of concerns about -- you guessed it -- the economy.
TOMEKA JONES, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Time for the Shoutout! What determines which way hurricanes rotate? If you think you know it, then shout it out! Is it the: A) Doppler Effect, B) Heisenberg Principle, C) Coriolis Effect or D) Butterfly Effect? You've got three seconds -- GO! The Coriolis Effect has to do with the earth's rotation; it deflects winds in certain directions in different hemispheres. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!
AZUZ: This image you see over my shoulder is one of the scarier images we've had on CNN Student News. It's Hurricane Igor, what the thing looks like from space. That opening in the middle there is the eye of the storm. And you see how the winds are turning counter-clockwise here around the eye? That's because of the Coriolis Effect. These pictures are amazing. They're from a satellite called the GOES-15. They give you an idea of just how big this storm is. It started out as a tropical storm on Saturday. Yesterday afternoon, it was a category 4 hurricane. So it's not only big, it got big fast. Forecasters think it will stay out in the ocean. But because the thing is so massive, Igor could cause some severe conditions for parts of the Caribbean.
Gas Line Fire
AZUZ: Remember that fire we told you about on Monday that came from a gas line in San Bruno, California? The gas company, Pacific Gas and Electric, says it'll pay up to $100 million to help the people who lost their homes. The company's president said he knows that money can't return lives or restore memories, but that he's committed to helping rebuild. Now, we want you to check out this surveillance video. This was taken on the day of the fire at a store about a quarter mile away. At first, people just stop what they're doing. Then, they start running for the exits. And you can actually see -- take a look at this -- you can see the doors being blown in by the force of the explosion when the fire started.
Burqa Ban in France
AZUZ: In France, there's a new law that'll go into effect next Spring. The parliament approved it by a wide margin in July. The French Senate passed it yesterday 246-1, with 100 politicians choosing not to vote. The French people are in favor of the new law by four to one. What is this? It's a ban. On burqas. That's what you see here, those full body coverings that some Muslim women wear. Actually, this new law bans any veil that covers your face. The lawmakers say those veils, including the burqas, deny equality. A French council that offers advice on laws says this ban might be unconstitutional.
Is This Legit?
APRIL WILLIAMS, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Is this legit? Hispanic Heritage Month starts on the first of October. Not legit! It actually starts on September 15 and runs through October 15.
Hispanic Heritage Month
AZUZ: Now, you might be wondering why Hispanic Heritage Month starts in the middle of a month. It's because the celebration started out as Hispanic Heritage Week. It was established by former President Lyndon Johnson in 1968. The week always included September 15th, because seven Latin American countries celebrate their independence around that time: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico and Chile. In 1988, the week was expanded into Hispanic Heritage Month, starting on September 15th and ending on October 15th. It's a time to celebrate the culture and traditions of Americans from Spanish-speaking countries and to honor their contributions to American society.
Free Teacher Materials
AZUZ: Our Constitution turns 223 years old on Friday, but it still applies to our lives. And our Constitution Day Learning Activity challenges students to find examples of how. The activity is free, and it's up in the Spotlight section of our website. Go check it out. You know where to find it; it's your favorite address on the web: CNNStudentNews.com.
AZUZ: We're gonna talk about science fiction for a minute now. Star Wars, Star Trek, Avatar: All these are about life on other planets. Well, scientists say they've discovered new species right here on Earth. These things are out in the ocean, down in deep areas that, until now, had never been explored. Claire Nouvian is a conservationist. She talks about what's been found down in the deep.
CLAIRE NOUVIAN, CONSERVATIONIST AND AUTHOR OF "THE DEEP": The inspiration behind the book "The Deep" that I wrote is really clear, because it happened one day, and that was when I visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California which, to my standards, is the most beautiful aquarium in the world. My life just completely changed afterwards. I flew back and all I could see were images of these creatures in my mind, and I just wanted to go home and tell everyone, tell the whole world! I felt like we had been looking for alien life on other planets for so long, and I felt we were wrong. Alien life is exactly here. It's on this planet. It's just in the deep ocean. So, I felt I needed to share my excitement and wonder.
I must say I've got a soft point for invertebrates. So, animals without a back bone. You know, deep sea fin octopus, those that we call dumbo octopuses. And they are pink or orangey, and they've got big fins, but they look like big ears, so that's why we call them dumbos.
So, when you go down with the submersible, you go down through the water column. And if you turn your lights off, you disturb all these animals, right, and so they all emit light. So, you look through the portal and it's much better than watching the sky, because there's so much going on. It's not static at all. Some light is just very, very instantaneous, sort of clicks or flashes. And others is continuous, sort of strings of light that disappear in the distance. It's just spectacular, spectacular.
Before We Go
AZUZ: Spectacular indeed. Before we go, a tale of another interesting creature. This one is a baby squirrel. Kinda cute. The only thing that could make this any cuter is if it were next to a kitten. Perfect. We did not set this up. The two are siblings, sort of. The kitten's mom adopted the squirrel when it fell out of its nest. Now, it's being raised like a cat! The squirrel seems happy to go along. It's even started purring.
AZUZ: Not getting at all squirrelly about the idea of having a cat family. In fact, they sound like a purrfect family. And that will be all the time we have for meow. Hope you have a great day. For CNN Student News, I'm Carl Azuz.