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Cramm for 3/29/21
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THE HIGHLIGHTS

Derek Chauvin’s trial kicks off today. 

 

THE BACKGROUND.

Last May, a video surfaced showing a white police officer - later identified as Derek Chauvin - driving his knee into a Black man’s neck. The man - George Floyd - could be heard repeatedly saying he can’t breathe, but the officer didn’t remove his knee for over 9 minutes. Floyd ultimately died. The death sparked a wave of Black Lives Matter protests and calls for social justice that didn’t let up for months. 

 

THE HAPPENINGS. 

As a result of the death, officer Chauvin became ex-officer Chauvin. He was also charged with manslaughter, second-degree murder, and third-degree murder. And, ICYMI, his highly-anticipated trial starts today

 

THE DEETS. 

Yesterday, hundreds of people gathered to honor George Floyd’s life ahead of the trial. This morning, members of his family and lawyers linked arms and knelt in front of the courthouse for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. As far as the trial goes, so far, the prosecution (aka Floyd’s family’s side) has argued that the defense shouldn’t be allowed to characterize Floyd’s state of mind - to which the defense agreed. Opening statements also got started, with the prosecution making the case that just because someone can talk doesn’t mean they are getting enough air. Plus that officers take an oath to “never employ unnecessary force or violence.”

 

THE TAKE. 

The entire trial will be broadcast live. TBD on what happens. 


THE ACTION

CORONAVIRUS: About 143 million doses of a coronavirus vaccine have been administered in the US. Expect that number to shoot up dramatically over the next few weeks, especially since dozens of US states have announced plans to expand eligibility to all adults by May 1. You read that right. What else is getting extended: the eviction moratorium. The White House just declared it’ll be keeping it in place through June. Outside the US, the Philippines is ordering more than 25 million people into lockdown over Easter as cases skyrocket. In Mexico, the coronavirus death toll could be up to 60 percent higher than the official count. And in Paris, there are growing concerns that ICUs could get overwhelmed by a virus surge. 

 

WORLD: Myanmar just experienced its deadliest day of protests since the February 1 coup. Reminder: a few months ago, Myanmar headed to the polls and re-elected incumbent Aung San Suu Kyi and her party in an overwhelming victory. The military-backed opposition party didn’t take that too well. So last month, the military detained a bunch of gov leaders (including Suu Kyi), declared a one-year state of emergency, and took control of the country in a coup. Since then, countless people have raised their voices in protest - and yesterday, these protests got violent when security forces killed at least 114 civilians, including kids. Cue global backlash. In other news, a court just found French drugmaker Servier guilty of “involuntary manslaughter.” The why: the biz made a weight loss pill that’s been blamed for hundreds of deaths - and deliberately covered up the dangerous effects. 

 

USA: ICYDK, Arkansas and Tennessee just passed anti-trans legislation - and 28 states in total are currently considering bills that would cut back on transgender rights. We’ll start with Arkansas. Recently, the state banned trans girls and women from participating in school sports based on their gender identity. Essentially, the law requires a person’s gender identity to match their assigned sex at birth. Tennessee’s law follows a similar idea. See: it forces students to prove their sex at birth in order to play in middle and high school sports. Yes, really. Meanwhile, today is the last day for Amazon workers at an Alabama warehouse to vote on whether to unionize. The results could make these workers the first at Amazon to form a union. 


WHAT TO KNOW

Ever Given:” what’s been freed from the Suez Canal. Goodbye, internet jokes. 


SAY WHAT?

“Billions (Yes, Billions) of Cicadas Soon to Emerge From Underground” - an actual headline. Oh great. 

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