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A species of giant tortoise not seen in more than 100 years – and thought to be extinct – has been found in the Galapagos Islands.
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More than 100,000 Americans have now died of Covid-19 in less than four months. That’s almost twice the number of Americans lost during the entire Vietnam War and about the same number that died nationwide during the flu pandemic in 1968. On average, nearly 900 Americans have succumbed to the disease every day since the first known virus-related death was recorded on February 6. Even then, the numbers may not paint a complete picture of the damage, since some victims – like those who die in their homes and not in a hospital – might never have been tested for the virus, and states still don’t agree on how to report deaths. While Americans are absorbing the steep toll of the crisis, infectious disease experts say it’s almost certain we’ll see a second surge of the virus when summer ends.
China has approved that controversial national security law for Hong Kong. It will drastically broaden Beijing’s power over the semi-autonomous city, which has been rocked by anti-government protests calling for greater democracy and more autonomy from mainland China. Critics say the law threatens the political freedoms of Hong Kong’s citizens. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he certified to Congress that Hong Kong no longer enjoys a high degree of autonomy from China – a decision that could result in the loss of Hong Kong’s special trading status with the US and threaten its standing as a global financial hub. That, in turn, could jeopardize billions of dollars in trade with American businesses and damage the already-battered world economy.
It looks like President Trump will fight back against Twitter’s attempts to call out misinformation in his tweets. He is set to announce an executive order today against social media companies, but it’s unclear what that will include. The President accused Twitter of censorship after it applied a fact check to two of his tweets about mail-in voting and even said he was open to using federal powers to rein in the platform. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey responded by saying the fact-check measures don’t make Twitter the “arbiter of truth.” Dorsey and his company have been criticized for what some see as a reticence to moderate posts by the President, who recently used the platform to push baseless allegations against former Rep. Joe Scarborough regarding the death of a congressional staffer years ago.
Six feet may not be far enough apart for effective social distancing, according to new commentary published in the journal Science. Medical experts say the distance recommended by the World Health Organization may not properly shield others from aerosols passed by breathing and speaking, especially in indoor situations, by people infected with Covid-19. Like so many things about the coronavirus, the experts say more information is needed about the nature of its spread. For now, masking up seems to be the best bet. Dr. Anthony Fauci beat that drum again yesterday, imploring people to don masks as the country opens back up. He says while wearing a mask isn’t 100% effective, it’s an important safeguard and is also a sign of respect for others – and a symbol of pandemic best practices.
5. Teachers’ strikes
It’s no secret that the drastic change in traffic and flight volume across the world has been a boon for the environment. However, the pandemic could end up endangering the climate in other ways. The economic fallout of the crisis has caused a historic slump in global energy investment that could threaten climate goals in the longer term, according to a new report. The International Energy Agency says such investments could plunge this year by a record $400 billion, lightening the coffers for clean energy initiatives and other climate-friendly policies and driving lower-income countries back toward cheaper coal and fossil fuel use. Plus, experts say once the world gets up and running again, carbon emissions will rocket back once more.
Dictionary.com has added a bunch of words related to culture, identity and race – plus some modern slang
Get ready for some bubbleball.
That historic SpaceX launch was postponed due to weather
The greatest plans, foiled by a spot of Florida weather.
Starbucks mugs and tumblers are the latest in-demand brand items
Gotta have someplace fashionable to put your coffee.
Signs warning of murder hornets at popular hiking spot were just pranks, police say
Let’s not give the murder hornets any ideas.
Cannibal dinosaurs turned to eating each other during tough times
Relief changes may be coming
The House is scheduled to vote today on changes to the Paycheck Protection Program, set up to help struggling small businesses with emergency loans during the pandemic. The bipartisan measure would give businesses more time to use loans under the program and more flexibility in how to use them.
“WE ARE NOT ABLAZE IN PORTLAND.”
Tera Brown, George Floyd’s cousin, saying the officers involved in the arrest that preceded the 46-year-old black man’s death should be charged with murder.
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How do you take your tea?
Hot, iced, bitter, spiked? With big, chewy tapioca pearls? See how people around the globe put their own spin on the world’s most comforting beverage. (Click here to view.)