★ The flag ccannot be used as a covering ★ The flag should never be used for advertising ★ No part of the flag

should ever be used
as a costume or athletic uniform.
— www.ushistory.org

It’s the law! (but not always enforced)

for a ceiling.

purposes in any manner whatsoever.

Double-dipping is allowed this July 4! For a dessert that’s dandier than Yankee Doodle himself, dip strawberries in creamy yogurt and blue decorating sugar, then sit back and savor the sweetness of our nation’s birthday.
— FamilyFun magazine

Give your lawn the star-spangled look this Fourth of July with a simple stencil and a dusting of flour. Draw a star shape on cardboard and cut it out. Lay this stencil on the lawn and spray the grass with water from a spray bottle. Leaving the stencil in place, use a flour sifter to cover the damp star shape with flour. Remove the stencil and repeat to fill your yard with a galaxy of stars.

Top Secret?
Secret government programs, sparking a debate over privacy rights
In order to protect our country, the government gathers information about people or countries that could threaten the United States. But how much information should the government have access to? That is a question many people have been asking in recent weeks, when newspapers revealed the U.S. government has been secretly collecting phone records and Internet data.

Recently, The Guardian, a British newspaper, revealed that the U.S. government ordered Verizon to hand over millions of Americans’ phone records to the National Security Agency (NSA). The NSA, which is part of the Defense Department, looks at foreign communications in an effort to help protect the country. In this case, Verizon had to hand over records of every call made to, from or within the U.S. The records show when people called one another and how long their conversations lasted, but not what was said. The Washington Post reported that the NSA and the FBI have been tapping into the servers of nine major U.S. Internet companies to collect emails. This top-secret program is known as PRISM. Are these programs legal? The 2001 Patriot Act gives the government the power to demand records from companies as long as the records are related to a national security investigation. But many people are concerned that the NSA and FBI have gone too far. Some experts say there has been an invasion of privacy that violates Fourth Amendment rights.

At first, no one knew who shared the secret information with newspaper reporters. But The Guardian revealed the whistle-blower was Edward Snowden. Snowden, 29, has worked for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and, more recently, for the NSA. Since May 20, Snowden has been livMCT ing in a hotel in Hong Kong. He chose to hide out there, he said in a video posted by The Guardian, because the city “has a strong tradition of free speech.” However, the U.S. Justice Department said it is looking into bringing charges again Snowden. Snowden said he came forward because he thinks the public needs to decide if these programs are acceptable. “I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded,” he told The Guardian. “That is not something I am willing to support or live under.” While some praise Snowden for coming forward with this information, others see him as a traitor who is putting the United States at risk. Either way, he broke a signed oath of confidentiality when he released classified government materials. As Snowden waits to learn his fate, the debate continues. Must we trade privacy in exchange for security? According to Wisconsin Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, a Patriot Act author, the answer is no. In an article published in The Guardian recently, he wrote, “I [believe] that we can defend our country and our liberty at the same time.”
© 2013 Time Inc. All Rights Reserved. TIME FOR KIDS and Timeforkids.com are registered trademarks of Time Inc.


Celebrate Independence Day with a batch of cookies inspired by our nation’s most famous bird. For each, spread white frosting on an oval cookie (we used Pepperidge Farm Milanos). Fill a plate with shredded coconut and press the cookie into it to coat it. Use more frosting to adhere a cashew beak, a mini chocolate chip eye, and almond slice feathers.

This reusable popper lets you launch paper “fireworks” during Fourth of July parades and barbecues — or wherever confetti is needed. 1. Cut the top 21/2 to 3 inches from a clean plastic bottle and discard the rest. 2. Cover the cut edge with tape. 3. Stretch the mouth of a

party balloon over the bottle’s opening. Work the neck of the balloon over the threads of the bottleneck, as shown at right. 4. Cut paper into confetti, then pour the pieces into the popper. 5. Hold onto the bottleneck with one hand, and pull down on the bottom of the balloon with the other. Let the balloon snap to launch a shower of confetti.
— FamilyFun magazine

Shine your own star
DEAR AMERICAN GIRL: My friend can do everything — and well! I’ve been on her athletic teams and she blows me away! I think I’m doing well, but then compared — Jealous? to her I’m just doing OK. ■ When you compare yourself to your friend and feel like you don’t measure up, you’re cutting yourself down. If she can motivate and inspire you, great. But if comparing yourself makes you feel bad, then encourage yourself instead. Don’t think, Wow, she does that better than I ever will. Think, I want to be as good at that as she is, and if I keep trying, I could be. You’ll feel better if you focus on improving what you can do, not on what your friend can already do. DEAR AMERICAN GIRL: Kids make fun of me because of the way I dress. I like to dress in bright and colorful clothes, but people think they’re ugly. How do I make them stop teasing me? — Colorful ■ Kudos to you! It takes confidence to have your own style, so respond to these kids with confidence, even humor. Try saying something such as, “Wow. It seems as if you spend a lot of time thinking about me. I’m not sure what I think about that,” or, “Seriously? Who are you, the fashion police?” Even saying the person’s first name in a surprised tone can be effective. If the teasing continues, don’t be afraid to ask an adult for help.
Visit americangirlmagazine.com to get or give advice.
© 2013 American Girl, LLC. All rights reserved

MCT KidNews 06/27

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