Biden is really feeling himself as Dark Brandon and with the recent student loan cancelation, we're okay with it. For now.
What the Health
The latest in COVID numbers: 94M total cases & 1M total deaths (+640K & +3K from last week) in the US.
Thinking about getting the next round of COVID boosters? Your first experience with the ‘Rona may determine how your body responds to the next shot.
The government will stop sending free at-home COVID tests this Friday, September 2. Grab more for your household at covid.gov/tests.
Dr. Fauci, the man that people either trusted or believed was the opps, is moving on. The chief medical advisor to the President is stepping down in December to pursue the next phase of his career.
Student loan cancelation
As most of us now know, the Biden Administration announced it is canceling student debt of up to $10K (or $20K for Pell Grant recipients). A borrower qualifies if they:
Received federal student loans before July 1, 2022
Earned less than $125K (or $250K for married couples) in 2020 or 2021
More takeaways from the announcement include a “final” extension of the payment deferment through the end of the year, cutting income-driven payments in half & automatic forgiveness of student loans after 10 years. Up to 43M borrowers are estimated to qualify for some sort of relief and 20M people (nearly 4M of whom are Black) are expected to have their balance canceled in full. Those who went to trade schools or who didn’t finish college, but left with debt anyway also stand to benefit.
While some will have their debts canceled automatically, applications for others will launch before EOY.
Important to note: The relief is tax-free at the federal level, but it may come with a tax bill for people living in these 13 states.
Keeping Up with Biden & Harris
As you might expect, the GOP is unhappy about student loan forgiveness. In response, The White House took the petty route by reminding them of their own PPP loan forgiveness.
The POTUS has appointed more federal judges at this stage in his presidency than any other since JFK. At this point in his career, he’s appointed 75 judges. His advisors say his aim is to create a diverse court that reflects where the country is headed.
Congress, What’s Good?
The August recess for your elected officials is still going until next week, but we’re sure the chaos and dysfunction will resume as soon as they return. Gotta keep it spicy with the midterms coming up.
Election Watch: 2022 Midterms
Similar to the recent projections about the Senate races, Democrats are seeing the momentum in upcoming House elections shift–slightly–in their direction.
Some headlines from last week’s primaries: folks is still upset about the SCOTUS revoking Roe v. Wade and Rep. Val Demings is officially coming for Marco Rubio’s Senate seat.
Another interesting takeaway from last week: Maxwell Frost, a Black activist and potentially the first member of Gen Z to make it to Congress, won the Democratic primary in his Florida district.
Social Justice Round Up
The officers that murdered Rayshard Brooks in 2020 for falling asleep in a Wendy’s drive-thru will not face charges. According to the prosecutor, Brooks posed a deadly threat while running away and the officers responded accordingly. Bullshit.
The Emmett Till Alert system in Maryland will alert Black elected officials, civil rights leaders, and pastors in the state of “credible” hate crimes or racist incidents that occur. Personally, we got 5011 questions about this. What are your thoughts?
One of the ex-cops charged in the murder of Breonna Taylor pled guilty to falsifying the search warrant that lead to her death. The former detective could face up to 5 years in prison, 3 years of supervised release & a $250K fine. Sentencing will take place in November.
Immigration advocates are calling on NYC, the State of NY & the US to give more support to Caribbean asylum seekers.
Around the Diaspora
Ethiopia’s civil war has resumed, ending a 5-month truce.
The Horn of Africa braces itself for a 5th season of drought. They haven’t experienced a dry season for this long in the last 40 years.
Meanwhile Nigerien officials (from Niger, not Nigeria) are using chemicals to induce rain.
Getting to the Money
The NBA Foundation is looking for its next Fundraising & Development Manager. This you?
Ever considered working at Nike, but not sure what you’d do there? They have a tool called Find Your Fit to help you figure out where your passions and experience could land you within the company. Check it out here.
If you think Joe should cancel more student loans, say it with your chest. Literally. Check out The Humped Zebra, who released a line of shirts campaigning for the POTUS to cancel them thangs before it was a reality.
Culture that Pops
Another week, another all-Black female crew. This time it’s Black women in Mississippi who will be the first to officiate a high school football game in the state and probably the first to do so nationwide as well.