The Good: Federal Judge Reinstates CNN Reporter’s Press Pass
Entwined in a battle that should’ve been one in the first place rises Jim Acosta, the victorious CNN reporter who seemingly strong armed the White House into reinstating his Press Pass after it was revoked following a verbal “altercation” with President Trump.
On the morning of November 7th, Acosta was handed the mic at a press conference and asked the President several questions concerning comments he made about the asylum seekers heading towards the American border.
The video released of the conference depicts Trump immediately becoming irritated by Acosta’s presence and further agitated by his questions. After Acosta asked Trump about previous statements he made concerning the caravan, Acosta asked a follow up question, a practice commonplace for press conferences. Instead of issuing an appropriate answer, Trump began condemning Acosta eventually calling him a “rude” and “terrible person”.
Following the conference, it was announced by Press Secretary Sarah Sanders that Acosta’s pass would be revoked and claimed Acosta had acted inappropriately and physically assaulted a young women in the process (an allegation proven to be false). While being questioned on the removal of Acosta’s press access by other reports and colleagues, Trump said that Acosta violated the decorum and respect due the White House and expressed his plans to come up with new rules that would outline acceptable behavior from members of the media within in the White House.
After CNN launched a emergency injunction to reverse the White House’s decision, the case was eventually heard by a federal court judge who ruled in favor of CNN citing the White House’s lack of due process. The decision to revoke Acosta’s pass seemed either retaliatory or arbitrary and no one at the defendant’s table seemed to be able to even point out why the pass was revoked or who gave the order to do so.
Despite the current administration’s overall hostile attitude towards journalists, the reinstatement of Acosta’s press pass is seen as a a giant win for not only CNN but for free press throughout the world. Acosta has previously contested the White House’s claims in the news, openly confronting officials for false and misleading claims and promises to continue to unearth truths as the administrations enters into the last two years of Trump’s Presidency.
The Bad: Saudi Ties Remain Strong Despite CIA Intelligence Review Of Khasobggi Murder
Despite the CIA’s report that confirmed the Jamal Khasobggi murder was ordered by the current Saudi crown prince Mohammad Bin Salman, Trump has continued to foster ties with the rogue leader.
Earlier this year Trump praised his new deal with the Saudi’s stating the deal would bring jobs to America, a statement which came under fire from both Republicans and Democrats who revealed that the agreement to sell the Saudi’s billions in weapons including tanks, war ships and cyber security technology hasn’t produced actual contracts. Besides the uncertainty of a concrete deal, dissenters also pointed out that Saudi Arabia has had a devastating human rights record, drawing more criticism of the agreement.
After the killing of Khasobggi, an outspoken journalist who condemned the current Saudi regime, politicians assumed the arms deal would be reversed citing the Saudi government’s clear and consistent disregard for the freedom and safety of it’s people, however Trump announced this week that he doesn’t consider the CIA’s report to be accurate and claimed more intelligence would be needed even calling the Saudi ruler a great ally.
Trump’s decision to continue his alliance with the Saudi’s is being seen as a wildly audacious move against human rights and morality by not only the American public but human rights groups across the globe. Even the U.S. senate declined to approve the entire agreement and so far has only approved to supply the country will $550 million dollars worth of weapons.
Currently Saudi Arabia is entrenched in a civil war with Yemen which has killed thousands of innocent civilians and an estimated 85,000 children. The war is currently the largest ongoing human rights issue; starvation, evacuations and migration have been several of the collateral repercussions of the civil war with no potential end in sight.
The Good: Federal Judge Blocks Trump’s Attempt To Refuse Asylum Seekers
After Trump announced military forces would be deployed to the US-Mexican border to intercept asylum seekers from South American countries, lawmakers quickly began to take action in an effort to sequester Trump’s plan. This week a federal judge officially blocked the administration’s plan to stop the migrants citing the country’s constitutional commitment to aid neighboring countries in their time of needed including becoming a safe haven for persecuted citizens.
Jon Tigar, the judge overseeing the asylum case made several comments during his Monday ruling stating that the President cannot rewrite laws that Congress has explicitly laid out. “Basic separation of powers principles dictate that an agency may not promulgate a rule or regulation that renders Congress’s words a nullity,” he wrote, later saying: “It’s technically impossible for immigrants to both be eligible to apply for asylum no matter how they got to the US, as Congress states, and to lose that right by entering the country illegally, as the Trump administration has mandated. There simply is no reasonable way to harmonize the two.”
Currently the situation is tense at best. The major or Tiajuana has called upon international allies to come to aid the city who estimates the cost of providing shelter to the migrants is costing the city $25,000 a day. Officials in Southern California have also asked for support as they continue to build shelters as they receive a majority of the migrants.
The Bad: Creator Of WikiLeaks Julian Assange May Face Prosecution By U.S.
Back in 2006, news of Wikileaks, a site dedicated to showcasing the private dealings of the U.S. government broke the internet as news sources, international journalists and global citizens flocked to the site to review and share classified documents concerning secret dealings of the government allowing readers to piece together stories that were once shrouded in false information and lies.
Described as a “black day for journalism” the inadvertent exposure of pending indictments was found by Seamus Hughes, a terrorism expert at the Program on Extremism at George Washington University who confirmed Julian was named in a case involving Seitu Sulayman Kokayi who is being accused of sex crimes which were originally supposed to be sealed. The prosecutor who filed the charges said his name was supposed to be omitted from court documents and the proceeding was meant to be kept under seal due to the popularity of the site and it’s author, Assange.
Assange’s lawyer has said that his client will fight the charges if they are brought. Assange is currently utilizing asylum in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London however criminal charges could nullify his asylum status and legally require his extradition to the U.S.
The Good: CDC Warns Against Romaine Lettuce
Following the recall of beef containing E-Coli, the Center for Disease Control has announced that Americans should abstain from eating lettuce thought to carry the same bacteria.
So far several states have reported cases of E-Coli including: California, Michigan, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Wisconsin.
According the CDC website citizens who have lettuce of any kind in their homes shouldn’t eat it regardless of wether or not they previously ate the lettuce and feel healthy. Lettuce should be discarded and customers shouldn’t eat out at restaurants serving lettuce in their salads or meals. Citizens who have eaten lettuce and feel sick should immediately contact their health care provider and cooperate with authorities to prevent other exposure to the disease.
E-Coli is a bacteria that lives within the bellies of warm blooded animals, while usually benign, several strains of the bacteria can be harmful causing vomiting, dieharria, bloody stool. Although most people successfully recover for the sickness, young children and older adults are at risk for developing kidney failure related to the sickness. So far 32 people have been hospitalized.
The Bad: Dead Whale Washes On Shore With 13 Pounds Of Plastic Inside
Just as Australian inventor Boyan Slate begins his clean up of the Pacific Ocean with his new trash collecting technology, a reminder of the importance of his work appeared this week in Indonesia. The carcass of a dead sperm whale made it’s way to the shores of Southern Indonesia infested with 6 kilos of plastic waste, drawing more attention to the world’s environmental shortcomings.
While several nations have made efforts to combat the issue of oceanic pollution by restricting the use and disposal of plastic and other non biodegradable substances, our oceans reveal the truth about our lackluster response to one of the biggest threats to the environment.
With over 100 plastic cups, four plastic bottles, 25 plastic bags, two flip-flops and hundreds of other plastic pieces lodged inside it’s stomach, the deceased sperm whale tells a sad tale of negligence and abuse told in part by it’s warm blooded brethren on land.
Sperm whales are the largest of the toothed whales; consuming around 2000 pounds of food per day and weighing in at an average of 40 tons, it’s easy to see how small pieces of plastic could inadvertently make their way into a whale’s diet. Indonesia is the 2nd biggest producer of plastic waste falling just behind China and is located in what is called the ‘Coral Triangle’, a place where marine experts state is at the highest risk for plastic pollution.
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