What A Week
The Skinny on COVID
The latest in numbers: 79M total cases & 947K total deaths (+461K & +13K from last week) in the US.
While numbers are down from Omicron’s peak, its subvariant “BA.2” is still spreading. Here’s what you should know.
New studies seem to provide further evidence that COVID originated at a seafood market in Wuhan, China. (We know some people firmly believe it was created in a lab. If that’s you, don’t come for us. We’re just reporting the top headlines.)
COVID rules are changing quickly & it might be hard to figure out just how you should proceed. The CDC has rolled out a tool to suggest how you should move in these streets based on the county you live in.
Take a Breath, Log Off
…or both. Lately the news has been too much to handle for a lot of people, even us. Here are 5 ways to deal with the seemingly endless wave of anxiety-inducing news. Think about whether it’s time to take a break from traumatizing or stressful news, even before you get to the rest of this email.
Russia Took It There
By now, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has garnered nonstop international attention. In response, the US and its NATO allies banded together to impose harsh sanctions on Putin. Putin then responded by readying the nuclear wing of his military. So far, the US has stuck to not sending any troops into Ukraine, but the military is prepared in the event that Russia’s invasion spills into NATO territory. This whole thing really is a mess & it didn’t have to be this way.
Curious to know how the war might affect us at home? Expect to pay even more for the essentials & potentially more cyberattacks.
Also, can we get into how even in the time of war, people still got time to be racist? If you haven’t heard, many people from Africa that have been living in Ukraine are finding it difficult to get to safety. They’re either being told that they must wait after Ukrainians to cross the border into neighboring countries or that their home governments didn’t take the proper steps to evacuate them.
Keeping Up with Biden & Harris
Even as the world condemns Russia for bombing innocent people, don’t sleep. The US military conducted an airstrike on Somalia after Russia’s attack. Maybe folks think it’s okay since Somalians are Black and are already facing extreme famine & drought conditions.
Ketanji Brown has been named Biden’s Supreme Court pick. She’s Black, rocks Sisterlocs & currently sits on the “second highest court in the land.” Learn more about her.
Oh yeah, Biden is also giving his first State of the Union address on Tuesday. Obviously, he’s got a lot to discuss.
Congress, What’s Good?
Coming back to Washington this week, the folks in the Capitol will focus on preparing for the upcoming Supreme Court nomination process, trying to pass an anti-lynching law (again), and taking up Biden’s request for $6.4B in emergency assistance for Ukraine.
Coming up in committee meetings:
Expanding access to affordable housing (YES, please.)
Preventing & responding to carjackings
COVID-19’s impact on the healthcare system
Social Justice Round Up
More HBCUs received bomb threats last week. In fact, 60 (if not more) threats have been made towards HBCUs since January 4, 2022. We know they said the FBI was investigating, but clearly, they need to investigate a lil harder.
The other 3 cops involved in murdering George Floyd were all found guilty of violating his civil rights. They’ll each face life in prison.
In the federal trial of Ahmaud Arbery’s murderers, all 3 white supremacists were found guilty of hate crimes. Any sentences that stem from this will be added on top of the life in prison that they already have in Georgia.
According to a recent CBS poll, more than 80% of people think Republicans’ ban of books due to their lack of knowledge about CRT is absolutely ridiculous.
Around the Diaspora
We didn’t forget that there’s a civil war going on in Ethiopia too, did we? Latest reports say the fighting has moved from the Tigray region to target ethnic Tigrayans who live in other parts of the country.
Jamaica recently increased its minimum wage to $58 USD and the people are rightfully asking for more. Following weeks of protests, garment workers in Haiti have also secured a minimum wage increase to $7.50 USD per day. SMH.
Zambia reduced maternal deaths by 300% in 16 years.
Getting to the Money
ChargerHelp!, a startup founded by Black women that provides maintenance for EV charging stations, is looking for a graphic designer, Director of Operations & 2 Account Managers to join their team. Some of the roles are remote. Others are based in Los Angeles. Check them out.
Passionate about helping those with Autism? AnswersNow, a company making ABA therapy more accessible for families in need, wants to make (mostly remote) additions to its roster in the areas of Sales & Engineering.
Black winemakers out West are making a name for themselves. Here are 8 Black-owned wine labels and/or wineries to shop whether you’re in California looking for a true, but Black, Napa experience or just want to enjoy a bottle from the comfort of wherever home is.
Culture that Pops
Love Barbie + Black-owned fashion labels? Here’s a treat: the dollmaker & Harlem Fashion Row have teamed together to highlight Black designers.
The NAACP awards took place over the weekend. Here’s the list of winners.