TODAY’S NEWS BRIEFS, Tuesday – January 24, 2023

Briefs are posted weekday mornings, M-F

At least seven people were killed and one person seriously injured after a gunman opened fire at two separate sites in Northern California on Monday, authorities said, in the latest mass shooting to hit the state in a matter of days.

The shootings unfolded at agricultural businesses on the outskirts of Half Moon Bay, a coastal city of roughly 11,000, about 30 miles south of San Francisco, San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus said.

The wounded victim was taken to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries, she said.

The suspected shooter, identified by authorities as Chunli Zhao, 67, was arrested within hours, with video captured by NBC Bay Area showing him surrendering to authorities at a sheriff’s substation.

Zhao, a resident of Half Moon Bay, is believed to have been a worker at at least one of the locations targeted, Corpus said. “We know that he acted alone at this time,” she said.

—NBC News

On Sunday, Kamala Harris gave a speech in Tallahassee, Florida over abortion where she quoted the Declaration of Independence but left out the part of the document that said Americans have a right to life.

“We are here together because we collectively believe and know, America is a promise, America is a promise – it is a promise of freedom and liberty,” Harris said. “Not for some, but for all. A promise that we made in the Declaration of Independence that we are each endowed with the right to liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

The Declaration of Independence reads, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

“Be clear these rights were not bestowed upon us,” Harris continued. “They belong to us. As Americans. And it is that freedom and liberty that enabled generations of Americans to chart their own course and decide their own future. With Yes, ambition and aspiration. Therein lies the strength of our nation.”

Harris did not mention the right to life as written in the Declaration throughout her 18-minute long speech.

—The Post Millennial

Friday was one of the highlights of my year. It was the annual March for Life. Hundreds of thousands of people, including many young women, came to Washington, D.C., braving the winter weather, to defend innocent preborn babies. I was honored to join them on the National Mall.

This annual march is unlike any other demonstration that takes place in Washington. Marches and protests happen here regularly. But most demonstrators are almost always seeking some sort of action or policy that benefits them. And that’s totally fine in a free society.

But the March for Life is different. Friday’s marchers were not asking for any monetary or policy benefit for themselves. Their bank accounts won’t get bigger if they are successful. They were marching to give voice to the one group of Americans who literally have no voice — our pre-born babies.

Whether one agrees with the marchers or not, and I strongly agree with them, they should be admired for their selflessness.

—Gary Bauer is the head of American Values

The Massachusetts Teachers Association, the largest teachers union in the state, has unveiled its top priorities for the next two years. Those priorities do not include holding instructors to more rigorous standards or ensuring that students do better on exams. They do, however, include making it lawful for public employees to go on strike — something that has been flatly illegal in Massachusetts for the past century.

“This outright ban on public employee strikes is unjust,” declares the state’s largest teachers union. It “unfairly restricts the ability of public employees to take collective action in support of themselves and the communities they serve.”

In fact, the ban on strikes by government workers is neither unjust nor unfair. It is essential. When public-sector employees refuse to work, they victimize innocent third parties. It isn’t corporate managers who feel the pain. Ordinary citizens do. Strikes by public employees are intended to deprive the community of essential services — classroom teaching, public safety, trash collection, mass transit. The widespread distress caused by such strikes is intentional: Their underlying strategy is to make the public miserable, thereby increasing the pressure on government officials to bow to the union’s demands.

—Columnist Jeff Jacoby

Strokes commonly strike the old. The average age for the devastating condition — in which blood supply to a part of the brain is blocked or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts — is around 71.4 years in men and 76.9 years in women. Millennials, however, are starting to bring those averages down.

Now ranging in age from 27 to 42, Millennials are suffering strokes at higher rates than their forebears did at the same age, reversing a 40-year decline in stroke deaths. Between 2003 and 2012, there was a 32% spike in strokes among 18- to 34-year-old women and a 15% increase for men in the same age range, according to CDC researchers.

When Scientific American further parsed the data, they found that the hike was mostly centered in the West and Midwest, where stroke rates among young people rose 70% and 34%, respectively, with particularly sharp increases in urban areas. Now, about one in ten people who has a stroke in the U.S. is under the age of 45.

There are many potential explanations for this disconcerting trend. Rising stress, falling physical activity levels, and fewer doctor visits among Millennials could all play a role. One narrative rises to the forefront, however.

As cigarette use in the U.S. declined from an alarming high of around 45% in the 1950s to just 12.5% in 2020, all Americans collectively reaped the benefit of less smoke in public places, which manifested in reduced rates of lung cancer, heart disease, and stroke.

But since the 1970s, the public health benefits from reduced smoking are being eroded by rising obesity and its related health complications.

—Political Insider

How many times have you heard President Joe Biden or Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) berate the Trump tax cuts as “a giveaway to the rich”?

We now have incontrovertible evidence that after five years since they took effect, the Trump tax rate cuts of 2017 raised revenues over this time period.

The latest Congressional Budget Office report released earlier this month calculated that the federal government collected $4.9 trillion of federal revenue last year. This was up — ready for this? — almost $1.5 trillion since 2017, the year before the tax cuts became law.

In other words, revenues were up 40% in five years. The evidence through the first three years of the tax cut finds that the share of taxes paid by the wealthiest 1% rose as well. So much for this being a tax giveaway for the rich.

—Stephen Moore is a senior fellow at Freedom Works and a co-founder of the Committee to Unleash Prosperity

The 2023 Oscar nominations are in.

“Everything Everywhere All at Once” leads this year’s pack with 11 total nominations. “All Quiet on the Western Front” and “The Banshees of Inisherin” follow closely behind with nine nods apiece.

January 16, 2023

The 95th Academy Awards, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, will air on ABC on Sunday, March 12.

—Good Morning America

Dallas Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy realized he wronged a cameraman as he walked off the field at Levi’s Stadium on Sunday after Dallas lost to the San Francisco 49ers in an NFC divisional round game.

McCarthy put his hand over the lens of Noah Bullard’s camera. Several on social media criticized the coach for seemingly pushing the cameraman in frustration from the defeat.

Bullard took to Twitter to explain the situation with the video from his camera and said everything was resolved. He said he met with McCarthy after the game where the coach expressed his regret.

“I did meet with Coach McCarthy privately in his office,” Bullard said, “and he did apologize.”

—USA TODAY

Not everyone is looking for a cuddle buddy during the colder months. Some people are opting for the opposite in a new, anti-cuffing season dating trend.

It’s called “snow storming,” which involves ending your current relationship in favor of a fresh start in the new year.

“Snow stormers tend to up and leave their long-term relationship, even when it might appear there is not an obvious reason,” says dating and relationship coach Kate Mansfield. “In some circumstances it is because the relationship is toxic.” But in other cases, people may have felt pressured to stay in dissatisfying relationships – especially during a season characterized by loneliness.

That’s why snow storming offers some people the opportunity to reevaluate their romance while encouraging them “refine their standards and become firmer about what they will not put up with,” says Suzannah Weiss, relationship coach and residential sexologist for Biird.

But is this dating trend for everyone? Experts say it’s important to proceed with caution.

Unlike winter coating, experts say snow storming is a more refreshing and healthy trend, inspiring people to decisively leave unhappy relationships and embrace being single.

Reasons for breaking up may vary. For anyone in an unhappy or toxic dynamic, snow storming can help to achieve freedom and relief from a high-conflict environment. However, a relationship doesn’t have to be abusive to justify leaving.

Some couples, for instance, stay in dead-end relationships that they know won’t last, because “it is comfortable for now or saying goodbye feels too hard,” Weiss says. That’s why the new year can be a time to reevaluate whether your current romance fits with your goals.

“The people best suited for snow storming are those who have a history of accepting subpar treatment or staying in relationships after they are no longer experiencing a net gain from them,” she says.

—USA TODAY

They’re saying a little prayer.

One alleged activist group in Norway is calling for Aretha Franklin’s hit 1968 song “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” to be removed from both Apple Music and Spotify after they deemed its lyrics offensive.

The Trans Cultural Mindfulness Alliance took to Twitter to condemn the ballad, citing that it has ignited harm against transgender women.

“Aretha Franklin’s 1968 song ‘Natural Woman’ perpetuates multiple harmful anti-trans stereotypes,” the organization tweeted. “There is no such thing as a ‘natural’ woman.”

The message continued, “The song has helped inspire acts of harm against transgender women. TCMA is requesting it is removed from Spotify & Apple Music.”

However, the group has since claimed that their original post was indeed “satirical” in a message to The Post on Monday afternoon.

The group also updated their Twitter bio to now say “PARODY/SATIRE.”

Many Twitter users were outraged by the opinion about the Queen of Soul’s work and questioned the legitimacy of the claims.

“So, someone heard the song and attacked trans people?” one person wrote in response. “What are things that never happened for $400.”

Another wrote, “OMG Get a life & stop trying to cancel everything. How sad and pathetic one’s life must be if THIS is a priority to you. This is a GREAT song! YOU GO, GIRL! @ArethaFranklin.”

—The NY Post

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY – In 1989, American serial killer Ted Bundy—who confessed to murdering 30 women, though many believe the number to be much higher—was executed at age 42

May be a black-and-white image of 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s