It’s weird weather season in the US. Temperatures will tumble in the East this week while the West bakes in record heat. So grab a jacket — or some shorts.
Here’s what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.
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1. Tax returns
Everyone will be talking today about an explosive New York Times report that revealed, among other things, that President Donald Trump paid no federal income taxes whatsoever in 10 out of 15 years beginning in 2000. He also reportedly paid just $750 in federal income taxes in the year he won the presidency and his first year in the White House. The tax information obtained by the Times also reveals Trump has been fighting the IRS for years over whether losses he claimed should have resulted in a nearly $73 million refund. The President’s opponents have been trying for years to get a hold of his tax returns after he broke with tradition during the 2016 presidential campaign and declined to release them to the public. Some Democratic leaders have already said this new report makes it even more critical that Trump’s entire tax history be released. Trump has called the Times report inaccurate and said Sunday that he pays “a lot” of federal and state taxes.
2. Supreme Court
President Trump has nominated Amy Coney Barrett, a conservative federal appeals court judge, to succeed the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the US Supreme Court. Her appointment will create a conservative majority on the court that could change the fabric of the country for the next few decades. Conservatives have voiced support for Barrett in part because of her closely-held religious beliefs and the possibility that she could be a key player in challenging the Affordable Care Act. Democrats believe Republican lawmakers are stealing the next president’s chance to fill the seat by rushing to confirm Barrett in an election year. Sen. Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham says his committee will approve her nomination on October 22, setting up a full Senate vote by the end of the month and putting into motion one of the quickest confirmations in modern history.
Almost half of US states are reporting increased numbers of new Covid-19 cases, and health experts are again warning of an even more deadly fall and winter. According to one coronavirus model, the US could see a surge of cases in October and November, resulting in up to 3,000 daily deaths by late December. (Currently, the US is reporting about 765 deaths per day.) Around the world, the death toll from the pandemic has topped 998,000 and the US accounts for more than 204,000 of them. The situation in India is also getting more dire. The country just recorded 6 million cases, and is the only country other than the US to reach that ominous mark.
4. Police violence
Protests dotted the nation this weekend after the Kentucky grand jury’s decision to charge only one officer last week in connection with the March shooting death of Breonna Taylor. Dozens of people were arrested during demonstrations in Louisville, New York City, Seattle, Portland and other major cities. In Portland, a pro-Trump rally organized by the Proud Boys, a far right hate group, clashed with Black Lives Matter and antifa supporters. In California, a 40-year-old woman was arrested and charged with attempted murder and assault after hitting two protesters with a vehicle during a demonstration in Yorba Linda.
Chinese President Xi Jinping doubled down on his policies in the country’s Xinjiang region even though the international community is becoming increasingly critical of alleged human rights abuses in the area. Up to 2 million Uyghurs, a predominantly Muslim ethnic group, as well as other minorities, are believed to have passed through detention centers in the region in recent years. However, during a meeting that ended this weekend, Xi again said the practices were de-radicalization efforts that were necessary for “the healthy development of religion” in the country. The US, France and other world powers have spoken out against the situation in Xinjiang. Last week, the US House of Representatives approved a bill called the “Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act,” which aims to prohibit certain imports from Xinjiang and impose sanctions on those responsible for the region’s human rights violations.
Director M. Night Shyamalan has released the title and poster for his new movie
It’s called “Old,” and like the specter of age itself, it looks scary.
Maryland will become the first state to ban foam food service products
Is this the newest environmentally conscious consumer trend? We’ll see!
Arkansas man finds 9-carat diamond at Crater of Diamonds State Park
Two female coaches and a female official made NFL history by being on the field at the same time
A coach on each sideline and an official on the field? You love to see it.
Moschino sends puppets down the runway for Milan Fashion Week
If only we could send puppets in to do our Zoom meetings, too.
“Progress takes courage, humanity, empathy, strength, KINDNESS & RESPECT.'”
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who endorsed Joe Biden for President in a video and social media announcement. Johnson identified himself as “a registered Independent for years now with centrist ideologies” and said Biden and VP candidate Kamala Harris were “the best choice” to lead the country.
1 in 3
That’s the number of American parents with no plans to get their children vaccinated for the flu this year despite the possibility of serious flu-related complications among younger age groups, according to the National Poll on Children’s Health.
Making Japan’s 400+ Flavors of Kit Kat
Melon? Sweet potato? Cherry? We’ll have one of each, please. (Click here to view)