Politics

Don't Say Gay Bill Takes Effect in Florida

July 1, 2022
The Hill, NBC News, The Washington Times
The context
Ron DeSantis's controversial "Don't Say Gay" bill went into action in Florida today, prompting a new wave of criticism.
Don't Say Gay Bill Takes Effect in Florida

Impacting students already

  • The bill's impact is already being felt as public school educators are asked to remove paraphernalia, including pride flags or photos of them and their same-sex partners.
  • The bill faces a huge amount of criticism from educators and free speech advocates who see the bill as a violation of teachers' first amendment rights.
  • The bill effectively bans mentioning or displaying LGBTQIA+ related paraphernalia or discussing gender identity or sexuality in Florida's kindergarten through third-grade public school classrooms.
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Into schools

  • The bill has left many educators who identify as LGBTQIA+ baffled over what they are allowed to say or do next school year.
  • Advocates worry about the impact the bill will have on students. Nearly 50% of LBGTQIA+ students have considered suicide in the last year.
  • Some school districts will be forced to terminate employees who do not comply with the bill's strict guidelines.
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White House response

  • Press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, on behalf of the White House, asked Florida students and parents to file suits against the state of Florida to get the bill in front of a U.S. district court or federal judges.
  • The White House reported that they are already receiving information about instances where "Safe Space" stickers have been removed and teachers in same-sex relationships being asked to remove photos of them and their partners.
  • A provision in the law also requires staffers to alert parents about decisions that may affect a student's mental or physical health.
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What else is going on?

The context
The White House convened experts on hunger in the U.S. today for a conference to discuss how to approach the administration's effort to end hunger in the country in the next decade.
Politics
Wednesday, September 28, 2022

White House Aims to End Hunger

The context
The White House convened experts on hunger in the U.S. today for a conference to discuss how to approach the administration's effort to end hunger in the country in the next decade.
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Focused on partnerships

  • The Biden administration has partnered with a variety of members of the private sector to help end hunger in America by 2030.
  • Some of the partners include Novo Nordisk, Publix, Danone, and Meijer. The partners have made multimillion-dollar commitments to expanding food access for Americans through food distribution programs or discounts.
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McGovern's role

  • The Biden administration is leaning heavily on legislation modeled and proposed by Representative Jim McGovern. McGovern lobbied and pushed the administration to host the conference.
  • Some of the policies discussed at the conference will require Congress to pass legislation, which could complicate the administration's goal if the Republicans take the House in the midterms.
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The context
Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida today, slamming southwest Florida with heavy rain and high winds. The Biden administration authorized FEMA to provide aid in Florida as the storm surge threatened homes and lives.
Politics
Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Hurricane Ian Lands in Florida

The context
Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida today, slamming southwest Florida with heavy rain and high winds. The Biden administration authorized FEMA to provide aid in Florida as the storm surge threatened homes and lives.
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Surging tide

  • Hurricane Ian started creating storm surges as high as 18 feet on Wednesday afternoon.
  • The surges are some of the highest ever recorded.
  • Surges are the most deadly element of a hurricane because they cause extreme flooding in coastal areas.
  • 8-12 feet of surge flooding is expected between Bonita Beach and Chokoloskee in southern Florida. 6-10 feet is expected from Englewood to Longboat Key.
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Politics

Ken Paxton Runs Away

September 27, 2022
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The context
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton went viral for fleeing his home to avoid being served a subpoena to appear in an abortion case.
Politics
Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Ken Paxton Runs Away

The context
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton went viral for fleeing his home to avoid being served a subpoena to appear in an abortion case.
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Under cover

  • Ernest Martin Herrera was attempting to serve Ken Paxton with a subpoena for a lawsuit filed by Texas nonprofits who want to provide Texans with funding to travel out of state to get abortions.
  • Paxton avoided the process server at all costs and eventually got into his wife's car and drove away from his house.
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Court filing

  • Paxton claimed he was protecting his family by fleeing the process server.
  • Paxton criticized the media as well for reporting without knowing the contents of the affidavit.
  • Federal Judge Robert Pittman eventually squashed the subpoena and granted Paxton a reprieve from testimony.
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June 8, 2022

This Week In Technology June 2nd

This week, the COO of Meta, Sheryl Sandberg, is stepping down, Elon Musk demanded employees return to the office, and Clearview AI got some bad news.
 This Week In Technology June 2nd
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Sources: 

COO No More

Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Meta (Facebook), announced she would be stepping down after 14 years.

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Tesla's Back In the Office

Elon Musk declared that Tesla workers should return to the office full time or get lost.

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Facial Technology Clampdown

Privacy watchdogs and AI innovators disagree on the way forward for facial recognition technology.

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Entertainment
May 19, 2022

This Week in Entertainment

The defamation trial of actress Amber Heard and actor Johnny Depp raged on and singer Eric Clapton’s European tour is on hold.

This Week in Entertainment
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Sources: 
ABC, Newsweek, Fox News, Billboard, The Hill, CNN

Ongoing: Amber Heard V. Johnny Depp

May 20th, 2022 

Actor Johnny Depp is suing his ex-wife, actress Amber Heard, for defamation over an op-ed penned by Heard about her experience with domestic abuse. The op-ed is allegedly about her marriage to Depp. 

Clapton on Hold

May 18th, 2022

Guitarist and singer Eric Clapton announced that he would cancel two shows on his European tour after testing positive for Covid-19. 

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Technology

Lyft Pauses Hiring

September 28, 2022
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The context
Lyft has frozen hiring in the U.S., a surprising move for the company that is expected to last until next year.
Technology
Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Lyft Pauses Hiring

The context
Lyft has frozen hiring in the U.S., a surprising move for the company that is expected to last until next year.
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Pause button

  • Lyft is reportedly canceling job interviews scheduled for this week and has frozen hiring across the U.S.
  • Bloomberg broke the report and said that sources within the company said the hiring freeze is a response to ongoing market uncertainty.
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Are layoffs next?

  • Employees at Lyft are worried that the freeze could turn into layoffs in the coming months.
  • The news also comes after a series of difficult setbacks for the company, including a driver shortage and a steep decline in the firm's stock.
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Technology

Fast Company Hack

September 28, 2022
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The context
A hacker accessed the media company, Fast Company and used its access to send a push notification through Apple News to users that contained racist and offensive language.
Technology
Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Fast Company Hack

The context
A hacker accessed the media company, Fast Company and used its access to send a push notification through Apple News to users that contained racist and offensive language.
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Pushed to users

  • The push notifications came from Fast Company's Apple News account.
  • The hack is one of the first, and most significant times that Apple's "walled garden" has been breached.
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Not good news

  • Fast company called the messages vile and shut down their website until the situation could be resolved.
  • The company did not share any details, but the hacker said it was easy to access the system using a default password shared across the company.
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Technology

SEC Fines Oracle

September 27, 2022
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The context
The SEC has fined the software giant Oracle $23 million for bribing foreign officials.
Technology
Tuesday, September 27, 2022

SEC Fines Oracle

The context
The SEC has fined the software giant Oracle $23 million for bribing foreign officials.
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Big trouble

  • The SEC charged Oracle for the second time with violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act between 2016 and 2019.
  • The charges allege that Oracle subsidiaries in Turkey, United Arab Emirates, and India used funds to bribe foreign officials.
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Pay up

  • Oracle will pay $23 million to settle the case, $15 million in a civil fine, and about $7.9 in disgorgement and interest.
  • Oracles subsidiaries used the slush funds bribes to win business abroad.
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Politics
May 19, 2022

This Week in Politics

The national formula shortage is finally starting to look up; a racially-motivated shooting in Buffalo left ten dead, and a Supreme Court leak shook the foundations of the court. 

This Week in Politics
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 →
Sources: 
CNN, Fox News, The Atlantic, New York Times, The Washington Post, The Washington Examiner, The Guardian

Ongoing: Formula Shortage

May 19th, 2022

The U.S. has been hit by an infant formula shortage, causing many parents and caregivers to panic as store shelves continue to thin. The formula shortage is due to a combination of factors, and federal help is on the way. 

Shooting in Buffalo Leaves Ten Dead

May 18th, 2022

Ten people were shot and killed at a supermarket in Buffalo, NY, on Saturday, May 14th, 2022. The shooter, a white 18-year-old, targeted a predominantly black community and used a legally purchased semi-automatic rifle. 

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