It Ain't Safe
The way people can't go to the grocery store safely, get abortions, or go out without potentially catching COVID (again)...Antoine ain't never lied. Hide everybody.
The Skinny on COVID
The latest in numbers: 83M total cases & 1M total deaths (+756K & +2K from last week) in the US.
Still trending higher than the rest of the world, we’ve officially lost 1 million lives to COVID-19 last week. At 666K deaths, Brazil has the 2nd highest number of fatal COVID cases.
Still plan to be outside this summer despite the current surge? Here’s what you should know.
Previously praised for maintaining a low number of cases throughout the first 2 years of the pandemic, the Bay Area is now one of the nation’s hot spots.
Keeping Up with Biden & Harris
Due to the latest court ruling, Title 42, which Joe Biden hoped to lift today, is here to stay. While the Justice Department plans to appeal the decision, human rights groups say this change in direction will cause “indefinite suffering” to asylum seekers.
The POTUS is deploying 500 troops to Somalia. He says the move is being done to stop a militant group with ties to al-Qaeda. Others believe it’s to insert the best interests of the US into other people’s business. Shocker.
In response to the nation’s support of Ukraine, Putin has permanently banned Biden, Kamala Harris, Morgan Freeman (yes) and nearly 700 others from touching Russian soil.
Congress, What’s Good?
Amid all the chaos around the baby formula shortage, 2 bills were passed with hope of addressing the crisis as quickly as possible:
The Senate unanimously passed a bill that expands access to WIC, allowing more families to purchase formula held through the government’s federal assistance program. The House passed this bill as well, so it’ll be signed by Biden soon, if not already.
The House passed another piece of legislation that would authorize $28M to hire more FDA staff to regularly collect data on formula levels and ensure fraudulent products don’t appear on the market. The fate of this bill in the Senate, however, is uncertain given 192 House Republicans voted against it.
Topics in this week’s committee meetings include:
Making financial services more inclusive to those with disabilities, including long COVID
Ensuring access to the polls in Florida
Tackling the teacher shortage (although any solution that doesn’t include more pay isn’t really a full solution)
Election Watch: 2022 Midterms
Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Minnesota & Texas: y’all got next. Here’s a summary of the elections happening in your state tomorrow.
Early gerrymandering wins for Democrats are being undone in multiple states.
Despite all of the news & trends pointing to the opposite, Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) believes his party will maintain its majority in Congress. While we hope he’s right, we also acknowledge that having that much faith (or delusion?) takes a special amount of strength.
Social Justice Round Up
NY’s Governor Kathy Hochul did some things in response to the Buffalo shooting. She signed an executive order establishing a domestic terrorism unit to investigate social platforms that amplify hate speech and that will require police to obtain court orders to keep guns from those who post threat to themselves or others (previously the court order was only optional). Does this do enough, y’all?
Meanwhile, the shooting triggered more trauma for many of us and reminded Black folks that we can never be too safe in the US.
Soon, any woman seeking an abortion after the point of conception will be breaking the law in Oklahoma. Once signed by Governor Kevin Stitt, this anti-abortion ban will be the strictest nationwide.
One of the other cops involved in George Floyd’s murder has pled guilty to manslaughter. As part of this deal, prosecutors recommend he serve 3 years in prison with the possibility of getting out in 2. If approved, this time would be served concurrently with whatever sentencing he’ll receive from the federal trial.
That damned Wells Fargo. The bank is in the middle of yet another controversy after being accused of interviewing Black people for roles that were already filled. The point of wasting jobseekers’ time was just so they can report a false increase in diversity hiring efforts.
Around the Diaspora
It’s no secret that Haiti’s crippling by Western powers has everything to do with their present-day circumstances. The New York Times attempts to break down the full story here.
Barbados has lifted its requirement for vaccinated travelers to provide a negative COVID test upon arrival.
Inflation is hitting people worldwide. Nigeria is the latest to explain how the rising cost of living is hurting its citizens.
Getting to the Money
Love chicken and open to living in Atlanta? Check out these jobs from everyone’s favorite chicken shack, Chick-fil-A. They have open roles in marketing, finance, communications and more.
Nearly everyone became plant parents at some point in this pandemic, and while that’s cute and all, y’all planters be hella basic. Ol’ Dirty Planters has got a solution for that. By recycling/upcycling basketballs, ODP provides unique planters that are sure to make your plant babies stand out and help the earth at the same time.
Culture that Pops
Howard University acquired a collection of photographs by Gordon Parks, showcasing Black life over the span of 50 years.
Naomi Osaka, never one to stay in a situation that doesn’t suit her, has ditched her longtime reps to form her own sports agency.
Rumor has it, Kendrick Lamar is filming a documentary in Ghana.