Current Events

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Current Events

Historic Pace

Different storylines have swirled about what’s happening at the U.S. Southwest border – here’s what the numbers show.

Current Events

The Numbers: March 2021

  • “172,000 persons attempting entry along the Southwest border” – highest single-month number in modern data collection (2012). Perspective: second highest – 144,000+ in May 2019.
  • 71% increase over the previous month, February 2021.
  • U.S. govt. expelled 103,900 people (citing a provision re: public health safety during a pandemic); 28% had been expelled once before.
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100% Increase

18,890 unaccompanied children (17-and-younger without a guardian) – a 100% increase from February. 

Highest monthly number in recent data records (2010). Perspective: the second highest was in May 2019: 11,800+.

“Largest demographic group” in border patrol custody.

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CONTEXT

  • U.S. govt. has repeatedly stated border “encounters” have increased since last April. This is true but needs context.
  • Border encounters (for single adults, minors, etc.) dramatically dropped in March-April 2020 w/the border closing due to the pandemic. Since then, the numbers have increaseddata shows a significant increase in recent months.
  • Encounters last April: 17,100+. Dec. 2020: 74,000+. March 2021: 172,000+.
Current Events

The U.S. govt. says numbers have increased because of "violence, natural disasters, food insecurity, and poverty in Mexico and the Northern Triangle countries of Central America." According to available data, this is the largest monthly number of border encounters in history.

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Current Events

LEVEL UP?

A new study says ceiling ventilation may be more important than social distancing.

Why this matters for classrooms and beyond.

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The Study

  • University of Central Florida, Dept. of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering.
  • Researchers built computer models of classrooms with a group of students sitting in rows and a teacher in the front – all wearing masks.
  • The models replicated different routes for airborne disease transmission.
  • Classrooms with ventilation (with a good air filter) reduced transmission by 40-50%.
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Why Does It Work?

  • The virus that causes COVID-19 spreads through respiratory droplets – the fewer infected droplets hanging out in your space, the better.
  • Ventilation keeps the air in the room circulating – it also pulls warm air droplets HIGHER.
  • Study co-author: With both ventilation & masks, droplets tend to go “up” and away from others, rather than “out” towards people.
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“The risk from airborne SARS-CoV-2 exposure does not appear to be strongly correlated with the distance, and many of the peak exposures were observed outside of physical-distancing guidelines.”

The study went on to say that "mask mandates, well designed HVAC systems, and the combination of exposure time with number of occupants are of increased importance compared to physical distancing."
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“We don’t want to relax mask usage. We want to relax social distancing…”

Dr. Michael Kinzel, one of the co-authors of the study, tells SmartHER News a surprising finding in his research: how much variation existed in a classroom between “safe” vs. “unsafe” areas without ventilation – some areas would have very little risk and others very high. Kinzel said he expected a difference but did not expect such a large discrepancy.
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Something To Consider:

  • So… do you need a new ventilation system? Maybe. Kinzel says masks ultimately help us get closer more safely, but the right ventilation system can help increase capacity and speed up our return to “normal.”
  • Why not open a window? YES! The whole point of any ventilation is to prevent buildup of contaminated droplets; cooler rooms are better than warmer rooms since warm air (your breath) rises.
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Why did aerospace engineers run this study? Professor Kinzel has an expertise in fluid mechanics (think of all that goes into making an engine work, as liquid gas is turned into mist and combined with air to ignite) so the team applied their knowledge of “fluids” to respiratory droplets.

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Current Events

“Vaccine Passport”

New York becomes the first state in America to unveil a COVID-19 “digital pass.”

What It Does.
Why It Matters.

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“Excelsior Pass”

  • A free app that reveals your COVID-19 vaccine or test status.
  • Where will it be used? “Theaters, Major Stadiums and Arenas, Weddings Receptions, Catered Events & Other Events in Accordance with New York State Guidelines.” The state *ALREADY* requires testing or vaccine records for specific events – this app centralizes the process.
  • Voluntary for NY’ers and businesses.
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“The reopening of key economic activities in New York State, such as arts and entertainment venues, stadiums and arenas, and weddings and catered events, will require proof of a vaccine or negative test for attendees.”

New York Forward website on how this app will be used. The app, developed with IBM, links your personal information with the state database to confirm "digital proof of a test result and/or vaccine."
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How Do You Qualify?

No positive COVID-19 test within the last ten days and:

  • at least two weeks since your final vaccine dose, OR
  • negative PCR test w/in the last 3 days, OR
  • negative antigen (rapid test) within the last 6 hours.
  • Tests must be administered in the state of New York.

 

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Something To Consider:

  • COVID-19 PCR tests have about a 20% false-negative rate.
  • The incubation period of the SARS-CoV-2 virus can be upwards of 2 weeks. A negative test more than 24 hours before an event may not accurately represent one’s status.
  • Recent data shows promising results for COVID-19 vaccines – a recipient’s length of immunity and ability to transmit the virus remains TBD.
Current Events

“…vaccination passports could perpetuate existing inequities within countries if those who are vaccinated can enjoy the freedom to move about their community while others remain in lockdown.”

Yara Asi, University of Central Florida in Orlando, in a recent essay expressing concerns about "passports" exacerbating inequities from race, wealth, healthcare access and beyond - a class of people who have a vaccine vs. those who do not.
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“The busboy, the janitor, the waiter that works at a restaurant, wants to be surrounded by employees that are going back to work safely — and wants to have the patrons ideally be safe as well,”

Dr. Brian Anderson, Mitre – a nonprofit helping to lead an effort called the "Vaccine Credential Initiative" to help create software to support "verifiable" vaccination records. Microsoft and the Mayo Clinic also are part of this coalition.
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COVID-19 testing has long been floated as an important tool for re-opening because estimates remain that upwards of 50% of COVID-19 cases may come from asymptomatic spread. The Washington Post reports the Biden administration is working on a vaccine passport but has struggled for many reasons, including trying to coordinate with more than 17 different digital versions available. Challenges include: privacy, forgery, efficacy.

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Current Events

S-T-U-C-K

A traffic jam in the “world’s most important waterway” may have you running into delays and/or higher prices.

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What’s Going On?

A gigantic ship got stuck in Suez Canal.

  • Not just any ship: The Ever Given, one of the largest cargo ships in the world. Stand it up and it would be nearly as tall as the Empire State Building.
  • Not just any canal: This man-made canal is a link between the Middle East & Europe, from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea. Dozens of ships sail through daily, carrying everything from oil to electronics to shampoo.
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How Did This Happen?

TBD. Initial reports: bad weather (wind/dust/poor visibility) at a precarious spot in the canal.

The canal narrows at certain points which require single-direction travel.

The Ever Given is stuck in a narrow pass, almost perpendicular to the canal & touching or nearly touching each bank – effectively blocking the canal entirely.

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Why Does This Matter?

Global trade delays: About 50 ships move through this canal every day. Now 150+ are stuck, waiting for the waterway to clear.

Even if the ship is “free” by the time you read this report, the ripple effect of delays adds another variable to an already-stressed supply chain trying to get back on track during the pandemic.

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So what would it take to "go around" (Africa) and not use the canal? About 15 days, according to one estimate. And remember - it's not just manufactured goods that are potentially delayed, but also the parts used to make goods. Analysts say this event will have an effect; how BIG of an effect remains TBD.

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Current Events

The Case in Colorado

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The Victims:

Denny Stong, 20
Neven Stanisic, 23
Rikki Olds, 25
Tralona Bartkowiak, 49
Eric Talley, 51
Suzanne Fountain, 59
Teri Leiker, 51
Kevin Mahoney, 61
Lynn Murray, 62
Jodi Waters, 65

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“He loved his family more than anything. He wasn’t afraid of dying. He was afraid of putting them through it.”

Homer Talley, 74, whose son Eric Talley, 51, was among the ten victims killed in the shooting. Eric was a police officer with seven children, 7 - 20 years old.
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The Suspect:

  • Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, 21; resident of a Denver suburb.
  • Reportedly a naturalized U.S. citizen whose family emigrated from Syria.
  • Motive unknown. Charges include 10 counts of 1st degree murder.
  • Prior record: 2018 misdemeanor assault conviction. Police report “at least two interactions” with him in recent years.
  • Legally purchased a gun on March 16, similar to one found at the crime scene.
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The Crime:

  • March 22 (2:40 p.m.): Cops responded to calls of an active shooter at King Soopers, a local Boulder grocery store.
  • Witnesses described a chaotic scene, with a shooter wearing a “tactical vest,” targeting people in different settings: outside the grocery store, inside a vehicle, inside the store.
  • Alissa surrendered to SWAT team and asked to speak to his mother. Taken into custody at 3:28 p.m.
Current Events

“He always suspected someone was behind him, someone was chasing him.”

Ali Aliwi Alissa, the 34-year-old brother of the shooter, who said he "kept a close eye" on his brother in high school because of his increasing paranoia. Fmr. classmates described the shooter as "joyful" at times, but quick to enrage. There is no known mental health diagnosis of the shooting suspect at this time.
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“The suspect’s identity was previously known to the F.B.I. because he was linked to another individual under investigation by the bureau, according to law enforcement officials.”

The New York Times. The shooter was known to local law enforcement; this report suggests he was also known to federal authorities, raising questions about why and to what extent. How this figures into the investigation is TBD.
Current Events

The alleged shooter is expected to appear in a Colorado courtroom on Thursday. His brother added in an interview: "I never thought he would kill. I still can't believe it. I am really sad for the lives that he wasted, and I feel sorry for all those families. ... We lost a brother even if he is the killer."

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Current Events

Clever or Creepy?

From free donuts to bonus pay, some companies offer incentives for you to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Smart policy or strange times?
(or a little bit of both)

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“Krispy Kreme is finding ways to be sweet as the U.S. continues to scale COVID-19 vaccinations.”

Krispy Kreme's latest incentive includes one free glazed doughnut to those who show their COVID-19 vaccination records. Those who qualify can receive one doughnut a day, no purchase necessary. Food for thought: the CDC says weight is a factor for incidence of severity with COVID-19; obesity may put people at triple the risk of hospitalization.
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“Generally, providing an incentive is a legal method for employers to encourage vaccination…”

The National Law Review writes that private businesses *can* legally require vaccinations (with exceptions for those who decline) – and advises incentives need exceptions, too. For example, Krispy Kreme is offering a free coffee and doughnut for anyone on Mondays during this campaign, even without a vaccination record.
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BIG PICTURE

  • Incentives for customers w/proof of the COVID-19 vaccine are rare *so far*: Krispy Kreme is the first major U.S. brand to offer something *to customers* on a national level.
  • Incentives for employees to receive the vaccine are on the rise: often in the form of bonus pay for stores like Kroger, Trader Joe’s, & Dollar General. Target’s includes bonus pay and $ for a ride to and from the vaccination site.
Current Events

Businesses are offering everything from gift cards, to discounts on purchases, and even "joints for jabs" - yes, you read that correctly: pre-rolled marijuana joints for those with proof of vaccination. Instead of quoting from the experts, we wanted to toss this question to YOU: Will these incentives be effective? What do you think of them?

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Current Events

PRICES AT THE PUMP

Since Thanksgiving, the price of gas has risen nationwide.

Where It’s Heading
& Why It Matters

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What To Know:

  • In the last month, the national gas price average rose by almost 40 cents.
  • As of the date of this publishing (March 18th) the national average is up 78 cents since Thanksgiving, according to AAA.
  • Gas prices have increased since Thanksgiving but have consistently risen for the last 10 weeks.
  • Gas prices vary depending on where you live, mostly because of the way different states tax gasoline sales.
Current Events

“As Americans turn optimistic on COVID-19 recovery, we’ve been seeing insatiable demand for gasoline, which continues to recover far faster than oil production.”

Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, says large oil companies had to lay off employees and shutter some facilities in the last year due to the pandemic. Companies cannot adjust as quickly as consumers. Lower supply + higher demand = higher prices.
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Something to Consider:

Variables factoring into pricing:

  • Demand – The price for oil is increasing as the economy is heating up again.
  • Historic winter storm in Texas – Supply is down as demand is increasing; bad weather impacted 1/5 of all U.S. refineries.
  • Spring Switch – Refineries have to blend more efficient, less volatile, higher-priced fuel in spring/summer due to EPA regs.
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One More Thing:

“The heating up of what’s commonly understood as a proxy war between Iran and Saudi Arabia in Yemen is just adding to the bullish oil price fever.”

Oil market analyst Louise Dickson, Rystad Energy. Tensions in the Middle East add to higher oil prices, which in turn impact prices of gasoline and other petroleum byproducts.
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Bottom Line: If you're paying more for gas, that means less money for other items. Higher gas prices, creeping up right as Americans are receiving stimulus checks, may slow the economic recovery. AAA says gas prices may reach $4 a gallon by this summer. GasBuddy.com helps you find the cheapest gas - check it out on our source page.

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Current Events

“Worst mass killing in the U.S. in almost two years.”

The latest on a Georgia shooting in the national spotlight.

The facts we know – the ones we don’t – and the context that matters.

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The Details:

Who: 8 people shot and killed (7 women, 1 man).  At least 6 of the victims were Asian women. 21-year-old Robert Long, a white man, has been arrested and is in custody.

What: 3 local massage parlors and spas.

Where: Atlanta area, Georgia.

When: Tuesday evening.

 

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“They’re very distraught, and they were very helpful in this apprehension.”

Cherokee County Sheriff Frank Reynolds says Long's parents recognized his photo and aided in his arrest. Investigators report Long says he has a "sex addiction" and was targeting sites of temptation. A mass killing is defined as one resulting in the death of four or more people (not including the perpetrator), according to a database complied by The Associated Press, USA Today and Northeastern University tracking these crimes.
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Something To Consider:

  • Initial reports: Crime was racially motivated.
  • 24 hours after the attack investigators say it’s too early to confirm motive.
  • Broader context: The shooting comes amid reports of a wave of violent and verbal attacks against Asian Americans during the pandemic. A new report details nearly 3,800 “hate incidents” in the last year against Asian Americans, the majority targeting women.
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“We’re not yet clear about the motive. But I do want to say to our Asian American community that we stand with you and understand how this has frightened and shocked and outraged all people.”

Vice Pres. Kamala Harris, the nation's first VP of South Asian descent, joined Pres. Biden in condemning the shooting. Prior to Tuesday's shooting, Congress scheduled a hearing for tomorrow on the rise of discrimination and violence against Asian Americans.
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What To Know:

  • Under federal law, a hate crime is one motivated in whole or in part by a bias against a disability, ethnicity, religion, race, sexual orientation, gender, or gender identity. The FBI’s 2020 hate crime report is not yet available.
  • Most states, including Georgia, have hate crime laws which add a penalty enhancement for crimes motivated by hate (what *qualifies* under that varies state to state).
Current Events

THIS IS A QUICKLY DEVELOPING STORY. Investigators say Long, who was charged with eight counts of murder and one count of aggravated assault, planned to continue his crime spree in neighboring Florida to target “some type of porn industry.” The FBI is working alongside local law enforcement in the investigation.

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Current Events

Fight For Freedom

A military coup in Myanmar has grown more violent and deadly – as the resistance grows more resolute.

What’s Going On
Why It Matters

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Background: The Basics

  • Myanmar is also known as Burma.
  • After gaining independence from Britain in 1948, military rule has continued in varying degrees.
  • Site of the world’s longest civil war as military has battled ethnic minorities.
  • A move toward democracy with open elections was fleeting. After the pro-democracy party won overwhelmingly in the 2020 election, the military seized power, claiming election fraud.
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“The world is upside down in Myanmar. We must fight until we win. The regime must step down. There is no place for any dictator here in Myanmar.”

U Tin Tun, 46, to The New York Times. Locals have taken to the streets in nearly-constant protests since the Feb. 1 military coup. The military has met the opposition with violence; the United Nations estimates 149 protesters have been killed since the coup began. 50+ were killed this weekend – reportedly the deadliest exchange to date.
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“We have continued to consistently inquire about her health and safety, as well as the health and safety of all detained leaders and civil society actors …”

U.S. State Dept. spokesman Ned Price on Aung San Suu Kyi, the former civilian head of govt. Kyi was previously awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her work advocating for democracy in Myanmar. Two members of Kyi's National League for Democracy recently died in military custody; her condition and whereabouts are unknown.
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Why This Matters

Myanmar’s move toward democracy (even with a military role in govt.) was seen as a move toward the West and a free, open society – a “strategic victory for Washington in China’s backyard.” (The Wall Street Journal)

The military’s violent crackdown is getting worse – leading to more death and violence, *and* further alignment with China.

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The U.S. has issued sanctions on the regime, as well as an emergency order allowing Myanmar citizens to stay in the U.S. for up to 18 months instead of returning home to the violence. Critics say without a concerted effort by the international community, the sanctions will not pressure change.

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Current Events

ALONE AT THE BORDER

What to know about the recent spike of minors arriving at the U.S. Southwest border (and what’s happening next).

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BACKGROUND

  • Some minors arrive in the U.S. without legal status alongside a parent or legal guardian; others arrive *alone*, or with someone the gov’t deems unsafe (ex: child trafficker, a.k.a. “coyote”).
  • “Unaccompanied alien children” (UAC) – what the gov’t calls minors (under 18) without lawful immigration status *and* no U.S. parent or legal guardian *available* to provide care and physical custody.
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WHAT TO KNOW

  • The Dept. of Homeland Security (DHS) apprehends those crossing the border illegally. They must transfer UAC w/in 72 hours to the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), part of the Dept. of Health & Human Services (HHS).
  • As their legal status is sorted out (ex: applying for asylum), ORR places *most* UAC with “sponsors” (usually parents or close relatives) or they remain in ORR facilities.
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THE DATA FLUCTUATES

  • 2003 – 2011: Gov’t took less than 8,000 UAC into custody every year.
  • 2012: The number started rising steadily, peaking at nearly 70,000 in 2019.
  • 2020: The number fell below 15,400 as borders mostly closed due to COVID.
  • Jan 2021: The numbers of UAC started to climb.
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RECENT UAC SPIKE

  • Jan 2021: More than 5,800 UAC – 17% increase from December.
  • Feb 2021: Nearly 9,500 UAC – roughly 60% more than January.
  • 90% of UAC who arrived since Oct. 2021 are between the ages of 13 to 17. Based on the recent past, a majority are males from Central America.
  • Gov’t facilities reached capacity due to sudden increase & COVID protocols such as required social distancing.
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LATEST ACTION

  • February 22: Due to the recent uptick, the Biden admin reopened an HHS facility in TX (used briefly during the Trump administration) in order to house up to 700 UAC ages 13-17.
  • The White House said the facility needed to open to keep minors safe while families have yet to be vetted and while accommodating new pandemic protocols. Some of Pres. Biden’s fellow Democrats criticized the move.
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“Our objective is to get these kids into safe homes with their families as quickly as possible. And we are absolutely not doing what the former president did … which is ripping kids from the arms of their parents.”

WH Press Sec. Jen Psaki on a former policy of separating children from their guardians during the Trump admin's "zero-tolerance" policy for those apprehended at the border. The current UAC policy is consistent with past administrations.
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“The Administration is flailing and failing on our southern border. The number of unaccompanied children has tripled in two weeks.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) echoing the remarks of critics who attribute the recent spike at the border to anticipation of the Biden administration implementing more lenient immigration policies.
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“Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the border is not open, and the vast majority of people are being returned under Title 42. Do not believe smugglers or others claiming otherwise.”

CBP Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Commissioner Troy Miller. While CBP "encountered" more than 100,000+ people at the southern border, more than 72,000 were expelled due to CDC pandemic guidance under Title 42 authority (public health and welfare).
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Comparing Jan & Feb 2021 to 2020, UAC are up over 133%, but overall southwest border encounters for all (single adults, families, UAC and accompanied children) are up over 144%. Why? Depends on who you ask. Some say politics. Others point to the violence and struggling economies in Central America - or a combo of all the above.

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Current Events

The Case In Court

Less than a year since the death of George Floyd, the trial begins for a former Minneapolis officer charged with his murder.

What To Know

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May 25, 2020

  • A Minneapolis convenience store worker calls police, accusing George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, of using a counterfeit $20.
  • Police respond & arrest Floyd. Police say Floyd “physically resisted officers.”
  • Bystander video shows Floyd on the ground, face down & handcuffed, with officer Derek Chauvin holding his knee on Floyd’s neck.
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“Please, please, please, I can’t breathe. Please, man.”

George Floyd. "8 minutes and 46 seconds" became a rallying cry for protestors, referencing the time Chauvin held his knee on George Floyd's neck. Notably, court documents have listed a range of times from 7 minutes 46 secs to *more* than 9 minutes for this interaction. The timing will be relevant to both sides. Video appears to show Floyd fall unconscious. Shortly afterwards, he is loaded into an ambulance and later declared dead at a local hospital.
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IMPORTANT CONTEXT

Much of what we know about the events of May 25, 2020 comes from police and bystander videos.

However, NONE of the videos released from various perspectives show the entire length of the encounter.

We expect to learn a lot more about the details of the incident during the course of the upcoming trials.

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AUTOPSIES

  • Medical examiner ruled Floyd’s death a homicide due to “cardiopulmonary arrest while being restrained by law enforcement officer(s).” Report lists “significant conditions” as hypertension and recent drug use but does *not* list these conditions as cause of death.
  • An autopsy ordered by Floyd’s family found his death was “homicide caused by asphyxia due to neck and back compression that led to a lack of blood flow to the brain.”
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LEGAL

  • Following Floyd’s death, Chauvin & three officers present at the scene were fired.  All four were criminally charged.
  • Chauvin is charged with 2nd-degree murder and 2nd-degree manslaughter.
  • The three other officers are charged with aiding and abetting those crimes.
  • Last week, an appeals court ordered the judge to consider reinstating a 3rd-degree murder charge against Chauvin; this is leading to some trial delays.
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BIG PICTURE

  • This chapter of the story will contrast the court of public of opinion vs. the legal requirements in the court of law.
  • Both sides will likely focus on whether Chauvin acted reasonably, used excessive force, and the exact cause and timing of Floyd’s death.
  • Beyond The Trial: Case described as a “defining moment in the history of a nation that is grappling with a racial reckoning.(Washington Post)
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The trial will begin with jury selection, which is expected to go on for about three weeks. Next, the prosecution is slated to begin their arguments; the defense will respond by presenting their own arguments. The joint trial for the three other former MN officers charged is scheduled for this summer.

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Current Events

A new study from the CDC takes a closer look at the *potential* impact of statewide mask mandates and indoor dining on COVID-19 cases.

Here’s what the study shows & why it matters.

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The Research

  • Time period: March 1 – Dec. 31, 2020
  • Many states had mandates/restrictions in place early in the pandemic and lifted mitigation efforts at varying times.
  • The CDC compared before/after data at a county level.
  • Outcomes examined: growth rate of COVID-19 cases by county and county deaths (death growth rates) in the days after implementation (days 1-20, 21-40, 41-60, 61-80, + 81-100).
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The Results

  • Within 20 days of a statewide mask mandate, counties showed a decrease in COVID-19 cases and deaths.
  • After 40 days (about 6 wks) after restaurants “reopened,” counties showed an increase in COVID-19 cases & a rise in deaths several weeks later.
  • “State mask mandates and prohibiting on-premises dining at restaurants help limit potential exposure to SARS-CoV-2, reducing community transmission of COVID-19.” -CDC
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“You have decreases in cases and deaths when you wear masks, and you have increases in cases and deaths when you have in-person restaurant dining.”

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said with the level of transmission and COVID-19 variants in 48 states, this study shows the value of mitigation efforts: “It also serves as a warning about prematurely lifting these prevention measures."
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Limitations Of The Study

  • “Compliance with and enforcement of policies were not measured.” CDC
  • Most of America permits indoor dining of *some kind* – the CDC did not measure differences in how it was practiced (Did restaurants follow capacity limits? Outdoor dining available? etc.).
  • Varying mitigation efforts place to place (such as gathering restrictions + distancing) could impact results.
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“If a positive correlation between ice cream sales and shark attacks is found, that would not mean that ice cream causes shark attacks.”

The National Restaurant Association calls the CDC study “an ill-informed attack on the industry hardest-hit by the pandemic,” arguing restaurants typically have to follow many safety requirements to operate during the pandemic. The group says "myriad variables" could have led to the CDC's conclusions, as in the maxim "Correlation does not equal causation."
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“We are maintaining the masks.”

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont who announced his state will resume restaurant dining at 100% capacity but with some restrictions (such as earlier closing times). Connecticut will maintain the statewide mask mandate, unlike other states such as Texas and Mississippi that will forego the policy. The differences in the timing of state mitigation efforts, infection rates, and cultural & regional differences in lifestyle are all variables to research.
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The CDC calls the difference of infections and statewide mask mandates (an ultimate decrease of nearly 2%) & indoor dining reopening (an increase of about 1%) "statistically significant." Those statistics slightly change during every 20-day interval the study highlights. You can see the percentages for yourself on our source page.

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