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STUDENT NEWS

Deadly Volcano Eruption in Indonesia; Political Unrest in Thailand; Black History Month; Aaron Lufkin, a Successful High School Football Player, Sets an Example for his Team

Aired February 3, 2014 - 04:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Thank you for starting your week with ten minutes of commercial free news for the classroom. I`m Carl Azuz. And this is CNN STUDENT NEWS. First up today, a natural disaster in Indonesia. This weekend wasn`t the first time Mount Sinabung erupted. It`s been doing that on and off for months now. But it is the first time an eruption from this volcano has killed someone.

At least 15 people died on Saturday when the mountain sent plumes of ash more than a mile into the sky. Tens of thousands had recently been evacuated because of this volcano`s activity. But authorities had thought the worst was over when it hit.

Volcanos are pretty common here. Indonesia is located on what`s called the Pacific Ring of Fire. It`s a horse shoe-shape line around the Pacific Ocean. With earthquakes and volcanoes all over the place. Mount Sinabung is one of more than 130 active volcanoes in Indonesia alone.

From Indonesia we move northwest to Thailand. Elections there last week were supposed to ease some of the tensions in the country. In some areas, that didn`t work. The nation is divided over its leader. For months, thousands of demonstrators who believe their government is corrupt have been pushing for Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to resign. At the same time, thousands of others have been supporting her. This has been going on for a few months, and there has been some violence over the issue. Hundreds have been wounded. At least ten people have died. But over the weekend, people living the demonstrations were calling for peaceful protests, and while many of those who oppose the government have refused to vote in the election, many of those who support it, had been unable to.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CROWD (inaudible)

SAIMA MOHSIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It was meant to be their day. Voters where the pro-governmental simply demanding their right to vote.

CROWD: (yelling)

MOHSIN: Protesting outside of polling station that have closed down after an antigovernment protest.

CROWD: (inaudible)

MOHSIN: Election, election, election. We want to vote today. These people who come to cast their votes are holding up their I.D. cards, but are not being allowed into this district headquarters.

"One man, one vote. This is democracy," this woman complains.

A short while later, they storm the building.

There was an altercation with the police. This woman rushing upstairs demanding to see the ballot boxes to cast her vote.

Eventually, these voters were convinced to file police complaint forms and go home. One of the first people who did manage to vote on Election Day was the prime minister.

Prime Minister Yingluck has come to cast her vote. She`s been insisting that this election must go ahead despite anti-government protests that didn`t want this election to go ahead and for cause for her to step down.

Those against this election boycotted it, because they believe it wouldn`t achieve their demands to cleanse Thai politics of corruption.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I didn`t go to vote. "I want reform before election," this anti-government protester tells CNN. The government denies allegations of corruption. Prime Minister Yingluck insisting she will only go if people vote her out of government, saying an election is the only way forward for Thailand.

Anti-government protesters may not have been able to completely shut down Bangkok as they planned to, but they have significantly disrupted the election.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

AZUZ: Time for the "Shoutout." Black History Month is in February, because it`s close to the birthdays of what two people? If you think you know it, shout it out! Is it - Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln, Mary McLeod Bethune and Thurgood Marshall, Harriet Tubman and Carter G. Woodson or Medgar Evers and Martin Luther King Jr? You`ve got three seconds, go!

President Lincoln was born in February, and it`s believed that Frederick Douglass was too. So that`s when Black History Month is celebrated. That`s your answer and that`s your shoutout.

As Black History Month begins in the U.S., we are bringing you some inspiring words from African American leaders. From civil rights icon, Rosa Parks. "I have learned over the years that when one`s mind is made up, this diminishes fear." From U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, "In recognized the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute." The words of abolitionist, Harriet Tubman, "Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world." And from civil rights leader Martin Luther King, "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."

AZUZ: There`s a theme to today`s "Roll Call." See if you can catch it. First, we are running with the Spartans of Salt Middle School, they are watching from Spokane, Washington. Then we`ll pass it to the Eagles of Omar D. Blair Charter School. They are receiving CNN STUDENT NEWS in Denver, Colorado. And we touched down with the Franklin High School Warriors. The end zone is in Franklin Township in the Somerset, New Jersey.

Last night, Super Bowl XLVIII ended after we produced this show. Of course, a lot of headlines focused on that today. One of hours is also about football, but at the high school level. Isaac Lufkin is at 14-year old kicker. He has talent, he has accuracy. He has overcome extraordinary challenges. And what he doesn`t have doesn`t stop him from doing anything.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

POPPY HARLOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There is a lot more to this kick and a lot more to Isaac Lufkin than his winning field goals.

(CHEERS)

ISAAC LUFKIN: I want to play in NFL .

POPPY HARLOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You do?

LUFKIN: Ravens.

HARLOW: You want to keep wearing purple?

LUFKIN: Yeah, purple.

HARLOW (voice over): He is still riding high from an undefeated season and the freshman football state title. He led his division in on-site kick recoveries this year. Remarkable, considering this is what Isaac goes through just to suit up.

(on camera): You don`t want anyone`s pity?

LUFKIN: No, I don`t need pity. Pity just makes me weaker.

HARLOW (voice over): He means it.

LUFKIN: I don`t like people helping me because, you know, it makes me feel like I can`t do it. I drop my backpack and someone helps me pick it up. I drop it again I pick it back up, because if I can`t do it, no one else is going to be able to do it sooner or later.

LORI LUFKIN, ISAAC`S MOTHER: For me, I see him put on his football jersey and I am just filled with pride. Because he is my little football star.

HARLOW: There is no question Isaac has overcome an unimaginable challenge, moving beyond the arms he was born without to the perseverance born within.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Isaac Lufkin ...

ROBERT PALAZZO: As soon as he walked in, I pointed and said, you are our plays kicker.

HARLOW: His potential was immediately obvious to classical high school athletic director Bob Palazzo.

PALAZZO: I would not be the guy who would want to tell him he couldn`t do something. Put it that way.

HARLOW (on camera): What does he do for his teammates?

PALAZZO: I think he gives them hope. I mean you see a guy with no arms, strap up and put a helmet on and launch himself into a violent pile, you know, and get up and smile.

HARLOW (voice over): Palazzo calls Isaac`s knack for accuracy a skill that`s tough to teach.

His determination was clear from the beginning. This is Isaac learning how to dress himself.

LUFKIN: Don`t give up.

LORI LUFKIN, ISAAC LUFKIN`S MOTHER: No.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. Don`t give up.

LORI LUFKIN: Don`t give up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here you go.

LORI LUFKIN: Yes!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Very good!

(LAUGHTER)

HARLOW: Here he is throwing a football as a toddler with his shoulder.

LORI LUFKIN: He never gave up. It wasn`t easy for him. But he never gave up.

HARLOW (voice over): He has learned how to do remarkable things with his feet. Eating ice-cream, playing the keyboard. Even video games. As a child, Isaac navigated the world with his toes. Now, in high school, he has also learned to use his chin, shoulder and what he calls his stuff.

(on camera): What do you think you have done for your football team this year?

LUFKIN: Now, they can`t be lazy.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

AZUZ: Absolutely great story there. This next one may not be if you want winter to be over. Punxsutawney Phil predicts there will be six more weeks of winter. Yesterday was Groundhog Day. It`s like this old school way of predicting the weather. Legend says that if a groundhog wakes up from hibernating and sees his shadow in the sun, there will be six more weeks of winter weather. Punxsutawney Phil did see his shadow, but though he`s probably America`s most famous groundhog, he is often wrong about the forecast. His counterpart in Georgia, General Beauregard Lee didn`t his shadow predicting spring is just around the corner.

With basketball season in full swing, we`ve seen half courts, shots full, court shots, trick shots. Here`s a spin on that. Or should we say, flip? Ashlee Arnau made a front flip half court shot last year that went viral. Then last month, she did it again, caught on camera for this YouTube video. Ashlee is a cheerleader at William Carey University in Mississippi. She`s even taught a Harlem Globetrotter her trick shot. So she`s got a bright future if she can keep her feet off the ground. You can hear the crowd flip out and spring to applause. She doesn`t seem flip about the flip, and as far as future success where it goes well. The ball is her court. Will it take another shot tomorrow? And hope you`re watching when we do.

END