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The Skinny on COVID
The latest in numbers: 79M total cases & 957K total deaths (+311K & +10K from last week) in the US.
As cases drop (we’re back to levels not seen since last summer) and mask & vaccine mandates expire, businesses are deciding if they want a return to normal or not.
COVID hits different for everybody. This man recently returned home after spending 500 days in the hospital.
China is seeing its highest number of cases since the start of the pandemic, thanks to Omicron.
Keeping Up with Biden & Harris
Joe Biden stood up at that podium during the State of the Union and—of all the things he could have said with regard to our community—he only opted to say that the police deserved more money. Whose mans was this in the primaries again? Anyway, a recap of the rest of his speech can be found here.
Joe also wants y’all to return to the office. We might actually be okay with that, but first we need to know who all gone be there.
A recent court ruling confirmed that migrant expulsions can continue if the deportees are not being sent back to a place where ‘life or freedom will be threatened.’ Those who arrive at the border will have to be interviewed by border agents who will determine whether their fear is reasonable or not.
The US & its NATO allies are pushing weapons into Ukraine to help them fight off the Russians. We wonder how much longer it’ll take before Putin decides to declare war against us & the rest of the West for interfering.
Congress, What’s Good?
In light of the ongoing invasion of Ukraine, the House is considering legislation that would ban Russian oil imports & send $10B to Ukraine in aid. Last week, the ask was $6.5B.
Speaking of last week…
House passed an anti-lynching bill (after hundreds of tries) and sent it over to the Senate for consideration.
Senate Republicans + Traitor Joe (Manchin) blocked an abortion rights bill.
House Republicans blocked the passage of the Crown Act, which would have made it illegal to discriminate against Black hairstyles in school & professional settings.
This week’s committee meetings:
Public safety in this COVID-19 era
The rise in hate crimes
Ensuring federal policies to fight climate change are equitable
Social Justice Round Up
Florida’s state senate has passed a bill that would create a police force just for election crimes. The law would also require election officials to review voter lists more often & make ballot harvesting (delivering or sending off a mail-in ballot on behalf of another voter) a felony. Let us pray for all of the Black, Brown and/or Democratic voters in the Sunshine State.
Ron DeSantis, governor of Florida, will sign a bill that will ban abortions after 15 weeks. Abortions after 15 weeks would only be allowed if necessary to save the mother’s life or if the fetus has a fatal abnormality.
In the most unsurprising news from last week, the officer who killed Breonna Taylor was found not guilty of endangering her neighbors during the raid. Remember, he was only charged for the bullets that went into the apartment next door, but never for Breonna’s death.
A Missouri school district learned real quick that playing with Toni Morrison is not the move. The ACLU filed a lawsuit on behalf of 2 students who were unhappy with the district’s vote to ban The Bluest Eye. The suit & the related backlash lead them to bring the book back. Despite the reversal of this decision, Ms. Morrison’s novel remains one of the most frequently banned books since white people became loud & wrong about CRT.
Around the Diaspora
In response to the difficulty of evacuating 20 students from Ukraine in a hurry, Jamaica is now asking its citizens living abroad to proactively register with their embassy in their current country of residence. Tell a yaddie to tell a yaadie.
Nations across Africa are still working to ensure all of their citizens are evacuated from Ukraine.
St. Vincent & the Grenadines becomes the first country to approve the use of psychedelic medicine.
Ghana’s currency is under pressure, but there may be some solutions to alleviating the issue.
Getting to the Money
Looking for a job that aims to build political power for Black folks? Black Futures Lab might be the place for you. They have remote opportunities & others that will have you in the field. Additionally, they’ve listed the salary ranges so you can make an even more informed decision on whether applying would be a good move for you.
The Humped Zebra (Black-owned) has made a special collection of caps in partnership with PARA, a home goods brand for those who love a lil smokey smoke. What makes these caps so special? 100% of the proceeds will go towards cannabis criminal justice reform. Shop here.
Culture that Pops
In a move that honors his career as a trailblazing actor, James Earl Jones (the one & only Mufasa) will have a Broadway theater named after him.
The Essence Festival is making its return to NOLA with Janet Jackson, Jazmine Sullivan & Nicki Minaj as headliners.
Has anyone been missing ‘Atlanta’ like we have? Check out the trailer for Season 3 ahead of its return on March 24.