Today’s news is dominated by abuses of power and pandemic resurgences, unfortunately. Law enforcement officials in the US continue to abuse Americans on the basis of their race and ethnicity, the Russian government ocntinues to murder its critics with impunity, and school reopenings threaten to restart or worsen the pandemic around the world. These stories were drawn from newspaper front pages curated by Newseum.org
Muslims detained by ICE have reported being forced to eat pork or rotten food, in yet another case of exceptional cruelty exhibited by ICE. All indications point to this being an intentional act of discrimination, but detainees fear retribution if they come forward with accusations. Unfortunately, since any opportunity for oversight rests with federal authorities, it seems unlikely that the situation would change since multiple Republican figures have repeatedly urged this exact treatment of Muslims.
Protesters have taken to the streets of Madison after police officers in Kenosha, Wisconsin shot a Jacob Blake in the back 7 times at point-blank range while his children looked on in horror. This shooting is something that should be an exceptionally horrific event, but has become routine. It is that very routine that drew many of the protesters, who were incensed over the frequency of similar incidents of fatal and near-fatal malfeasance by police. Police, in response, seem incapable of reflection or meaningful change and only seem to more and more brazenly engage in unprovoked violence against the citizens they swore to protect and serve.
Despite early success in beating COVID-19, Seoul is now seeing a second spike which has prompted swift action from South Korea’s functional, competent government. Rather than just assuming things will turn out for the best as has been the case here, experts in South Korea are warning the populace that this spike could very well continue to worsen. Troublingly, this outbreak is related to the reopening of Seoul’s schools and bodes extremely poorly for states in the US, whose failing infrastructure and sclerotic bureaucracies will only continue to fail their citizens.
Alexei Navalny, the opposition leader poisoned by Putin’s government. Photo by Evgeny Feldman reproduced under CC BY-SA 3.0 License
Prominent critic of Putin’s brutal dictatorial regime Alexei Navalny has tested positive for nerve agents. In an almost identical repeat of other attempted and successful assassinations carried out by the Russian government, it appears that Navalny’s tea was poisoned. While denying the poisoning, this case matches the modus operandi of multiple assassinations carried out against Russian critics of Putin’s regime, and the re-use of the MO implies that the assassination is meant more to send a message than to silence specifically Navalny.
Georgia’s institutions of higher education are desperately attempting to expand testing as many have seen outbreaks of COVID after reopening. These events have only validated those who expressed concern that Georgia’s universities were not doing enough to protect faculty and students in the reopening process. Perversely, parents (and therefore, the chief revenue stream of the university) have been the chief champions of the return to in-person learning, despite the grave danger that poses to their children and families.
Need to keep current, look to the past, teach a topic? The Everett Cafe features daily postings of news from around the world, and also promotes awareness of historical events from an educational context. Check News Cafe on the Library Blog for more.