(CNN Student News) -- March 2, 2011
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MR. PRICHARD'S SOCIAL STUDIES CLASS, VAN WERT MIDDLE SCHOOL: Van Wert Middle School loves learning about the world with Carl Azuz. Go, Carl!
CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Thanks to Mr. Prichard's students for that amazing introduction. Thanks to all of you for checking out this Wednesday edition of CNN Student News. I am Carl Azuz. Let's get going.
AZUZ: First up, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the country of Libya is at a crossroads: could become a peaceful democracy; could face a drawn-out civil war. Right now, the situation is tense. There were reports that forces that are loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi tried to regain control of a town near the capital that's under the control of people who are against Colonel Gadhafi. The attempt was unsuccessful. But an official close to Gadhafi denied this even happened.
In fact, during an interview with ABC News, Gadhafi denied using any force against his own people. He even denied the existence of any protests against his government at all. Obviously, something is going on in Libya. The question a lot of people are asking is, will the U.S. get involved, and how? Jill Dougherty looks at some of the options.
JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN FOREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: The U.S. calls it a reign of violence by Colonel Moammar Gadhafi and his cohorts, and it's setting in motion a range of options to stop it.
HILLARY CLINTON, SECRETARY OF STATE: Nothing is off the table so long as the Libyan government continues to threaten and kill Libyan citizens.
DOUGHERTY: The administration already is taking steps to help the thousands of Libyans fleeing the bloodshed. Refugees are crossing the borders into neighboring countries of Egypt and Tunisia, nations that themselves have just undergone their own revolutions.
P.J. CROWLEY, STATE DEPT. SPOKESMAN: We are dispatching two expert humanitarian teams to Tunisia and to Egypt.
DOUGHERTY: The U.S., along with other countries, is bracing for rescue missions, preparing medical and food supplies. Blocking funds that Gadhafi could use to continue his violent crackdown, the Treasury Department has frozen at least $30 billion in Libyan government assets, the largest amount ever blocked, it says, under a sanctions program.
CLINTON: Gadhafi has lost the legitimacy to govern, and it is time for him to go without further violence or delay.
DOUGHERTY: The U.S. ambassador is reaching out to opposition groups in Libya, assessing who might lead up a post-Gadhafi government. But some senators tell CNN the U.S. should help the rebels directly.
SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN, (I) CONNECTICUT: No-fly zones, recognition of the revolutionary government -- the citizens' government -- and support for them with both humanitarian assistance, and I would provide them with arms.
DOUGHERTY: Administration officials say it's way too early to talk about arming the opposition, but they are considering the idea of a no-fly zone. A former State Department legal adviser, however, says that's complicated.
JOHN BELLINGER, FMR. STATE DEPARTMENT LEGAL ADVISER: Legally, there is no authority for the United States or other countries to do that under international law unless authorized by the Security Council. And politically, that could be quite problematic as well for the United States or NATO, to begin shooting down Libyan aircraft, even in the face of the things that Gadhafi is doing against his own nationals.
STAN CASE, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Today's Shoutout goes out to Ms. Rapp's 8th grade history class at Pontiac Junior High School in Pontiac, Illinois! Which of these groups supplies a large portion of the world's oil? Is it the: A) United Nations, B) WTO, C) OPEC or D) World Bank? You've got three seconds -- GO! OPEC, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, supplies about 40% of the world's oil. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!
AZUZ: And OPEC has a lot to do with how much you pay for gasoline. Right now, we are paying a lot more. The nationwide average price for a gallon is about three dollars and 38 cents. That's about 10 percent more than gas was a month ago. And you might be surprised to hear this: The filling station where you get gas doesn't make a lot of money off it.
The biggest part of your dollar, 68 cents, go to crude oil. The price of that? Largely determined by OPEC. About 14 cents on the dollar go to taxes. Those include federal, state, and local taxes, which is why gas prices are different state to state. 10 cents are for refining; that's converting crude oil into gasoline that cars can use. And about eight pennies go for getting that gas from the refineries to your neighborhood convenience store. Advertising is factored in here too. Now, all this adds up to 100 cents, showing you clearly that the stores themselves don't make much from selling gas.
A few factors that can also affect price. Demand: In the summertime, people travel more and use more gas. When demand goes up, price can go up. Geography: The farther you live from an oil refinery, the more you'll pay, generally speaking. And competition: If the gas station across the street lowers its prices, others may too. You gotta remember, these filling stations are businesses; they must make a profit to stay open.
AZUZ: The federal government could be staying open. We reported yesterday about the threat of a shutdown if Congress couldn't reach an agreement on how to pay for government spending. Well, yesterday afternoon, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would keep funding the government, at least for the next two weeks. The bill would also cut $4 billion from current spending. But this is not a done deal. The Senate has to vote on it now. And the deadline for a compromise -- and to avoid a government shutdown -- is midnight on Friday.
Is This Legit?
TOMEKA JONES, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Is this legit? Women's History Month became a national observance in the 1980s. This is true! After years of celebrating Women's History Week, Congress declared March to be Women's History Month in 1987.
Strides by Women
AZUZ: Women's History Month celebrates the achievements and advancements of women in American society. The theme of this year's celebration is "our history is our strength." Every year, the president makes an official proclamation, kicking off Women's History Month. During this year's proclamation, President Obama said the annual event should push America to continue trying to erase the inequalities that women face. That includes in the workforce. The White House just put out a new report showing that there are nearly the same number of men and women in the work force. The report also indicates that the gap between what men earn and what women earn is getting smaller. But on average, women still only make about 75 percent as much as men do for the same jobs. However, women are contributing more to family incomes. And 18 percent of women earn more than their husbands.
AZUZ: Next up today, Dr. Sanjay Gupta is going to introduce us to someone who's using his passion as inspiration for charity. This guy was a world class athlete. But one run changed his life and gave him an idea to help change the lives of others.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Toby Tanser was an elite runner, talented enough to keep up with the best in the world: the Kenyans.
TOBY TANSER, FOUNDER, "SHOE4AFRICA": I ran 15 minutes high for the 5k. Which is, I think it was like 4:28 or 4:30. And I did a half-marathon at 449 paces or something.
GUPTA: But while running one day in Africa, this happened.
TANSER: Two guys came walking towards me and he pulled out a machete and down on my head. The other had like a homemade baseball bat and he swung like this and it smashed against my skull. And they robbed my shoe and my watch and sunglasses. And they were just stealing my other shoe when I woke up.
GUPTA: He almost died, but it was a chance for Toby to find his calling.
TANSER: Who is going to be number one?
TANSER: I believe very much in fate, and I think it happened to me for a purpose.
GUPTA: They wanted to kill you for your shoes, and now you've taken that whole experience and said, you know what, if they want shoes, we will give them shoes.
TANSER: Two years ago, we took 7,000 pairs to that island where I was robbed.
GUPTA: His organization is called "Shoe4Africa," and as you might guess, he donates running shoes to those living in Africa. What he found was even one pair makes a difference.
TANSER: And so this boy, he took the shoes and he started training, boom, boom, boom. Five years later, he won the world championships. So now...
GUPTA: Wow. It gives you goose bumps. And in case you're curious, yes, Toby is back to running.
TANSER: I thought, what is something someone has never done before? And that comes from absolute sea level to the top of the world's highest freestanding mountain and, you know, as fast as possible.
GUPTA: But his main focus is giving everyone a chance to run.
TANSER: If you're coming in and buying a pair of sneakers, why don't you put the other pair into a box and send them over?
Before We Go
AZUZ: Finally today, some "Before We Go" math. Snow + time x creativity = this! Not just a giant snowman, though it is almost two stories tall. As you see, it's also a slide: twists, turns, there's even a tunnel in there. The snow sculpter's been scheming up slides for years. This one took him more than 50 hours. The problem is that when you build something out of snow, your hard work goes to waste the minute it melts.
AZUZ: But since everyone seems to be enjoying it so much, I guess we're gonna let that slide. Hope you have a great day. For CNN Student News, I'm Carl Azuz. We'll see you tomorrow.