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NEED TO KNOW:
It's off to jail for Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who refused to grant marriage licenses to gay couples in defiance of a court order and a ruling by the US Supreme Court.
Federal Judge David Bunning of Kentucky's Eastern District found her in contempt and sent her to jail, saying: "The court does not do this lightly," but in this case, "it's necessary."
Davis, a 49-year-old Democrat and Apostolic Christian, had repeatedly defied Bunning's orders to resume giving licenses, citing her faith and saying she was acting on "God's authority."
She has become a lightning rod for supporters and opponents of gay marriage in the controversy, which has become the highest-profile cultural skirmish since the landmark Obergefell ruling this summer. Over the last several days vying groups of protesters have flocked to the government offices where Davis works. After her jailing, several Republican presidential candidates spoke in her defense.
"I think it's absurd to put someone in jail for exercising their religious liberty," said Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky.
Davis' supporters are taking her case as a sign that religious liberty is under assault in the US. But many others, including Judge Bunning — who alluded to his own "strongly held" religious beliefs during the proceedings — say it's just a matter of doing the job she signed up to do and obeying the law.
"Ms. Davis took an oath," said the judge before citing her for contempt. "Oaths mean things."
WANT TO KNOW:
Politicians who like to play fast and loose with the facts be warned: Stay away from Mexico, or "The Bloodhound" (El Sabueso) will be snapping at your heels.
GlobalPost's James Fredrick goes inside this crusading new fact-checking organization as it pores over claims made by Mexico's president in a speech this week.
Fredrick takes us behind the scenes into the war-room where The Bloodhounds — some 60 journalists, researchers, and statisticians — examine President Peña Nieto's assertions, among them his claim that "it is a fact that violence is decreasing in Mexico."
Their conclusion: "Deceptive."
Read more about how this group, inspired by fact-checking sleuths like Politifact, are helping the Mexican public find the truth at a time when their confidence in the president and the political system is at a serious low.
STRANGE BUT TRUE:
A mysterious rash of sasquatch sightings — OK, one-foot-tall sasquatch silhouettes — in the bucolic town of Kennebunk, Maine has finally been cracked this week. Local police arrested one Freeman Hatch, whom they say has been spray-painting likenesses of the phantom beast around town. Local news reported no statement from the blond, goatteed, 36-year-old sasquatch evangelist, but the police chief did not sound amused. The paintings "deface public and private property," and that property costs "time and money to repair or replace," Chief Robert MacKenzie said.
The apprehension of Hatch is no doubt a disappointment to Bigfoot enthusiasts the world over, who have recently claimed sightings as far afield as Vancouver and Wasaga Beach, Canada; Kemerovo, Siberia; and Black Mountain, North Carolina.
And yet, somehow, in the age of ubiquitous smartphones, the footage always turns out mysteriously grainy or cut short.
"Either there's a Sasquatch out there or someone is trying to play a practical joke," said the man who reported the North Carolina sighting.