Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Wake-Up Call: 21 Dead In Mass Shooting

Daily Mail 5/25/22

Nineteen children and two adults, both reportedly teachers, were killed in a mass shooting at a Texas elementary school late yesterday morning that was carried out by an 18-year-old man who was killed by law enforcement. It wasn't immediately clear how many people were wounded. The attack took place at Robb Elementary School in the heavily Latino town of Uvalde, which has second-, third- and fourth-grade students. Many parents waited late into the night at a civic center to find out whether their children had survived, with some telling CNN they had to give DNA samples to assist in identifying the murdered children.

The attack began when the gunman, Ulvade resident Salvador Ramos, crashed his car outside the school and ran into the building, where he went classroom to classroom shooting his victims. Two local police officers exchanged gunfire with Ramos, who was wearing body armor, when a resident called 911 after the car crash, and both officers were shot. Ulvade is located 75 miles from the border, and teams of Border Patrol agents responded to the school. AP cited a law enforcement official as saying one Border Patrol agent who was working nearby rushed into the school and shot and killed the gunman. The source said the agent was wounded, but able to walk out of the school.

State Senator Roland Gutierrez said that state police told him Ramos killed his grandmother before heading to the school, using two military-style rifles he bought on his 18th birthday. However, officials later said she survived and was hospitalized in critical condition. Law enforcement officials didn't reveal a motive, but investigators believe Ramos posted photos on Instagram of two guns he used in the shooting, and they were looking into whether he made statements online about a planned attack.

Biden Addresses Shooting:
President Biden spoke from the White House shortly after returning from a five-day Asian trip, having learned about the shooting while still flying home on Air Force One. He pleaded for action to address gun violence, emotionally saying, "When in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby? Why are we willing to live with this carnage?" Biden said that other countries have people with mental health issues or filled with hate, but stated, "These kinds of mass shootings rarely happen anywhere else in the world," Biden also spoke of the anguish of the families of the children who were killed, saying, "To lose a child is like having a piece of your soul ripped away."

➤ZELENSKYY SAYS 'VERY DIFFICULT' SITUATION IN DONBAS; 200 BODIES FOUND IN MARIUPOL BUILDING: As heavy fighting continued in Ukraine's eastern Donbas region, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in his nightly address last night, "The situation in Donbas now is very difficult." He continued, "Practically the full might of the Russian army, whatever they have left, is being thrown at the offensive there. . . . the occupiers want to destroy everything there." Zelenskyy stated that Ukraine's army is fighting back, but, quote, "it will take time and a lot more effort by our people to overcome their advantage in the amount of equipment and weapons."

Meanwhile, Ukrainian authorities said that workers digging through the rubble of an apartment building in Mariupol found 200 bodies in the basement, which would make it one of the deadliest known attacks since the war began. Russian forces are in control of the southern port city that was devastated during the three-month campaign to take it. Ukrainian authorities claim at least 21,000 people died in the siege of the city, and have accused Russia of trying to cover it up by burying the dead in mass graves and using mobile cremation equipment.

➤SOUTH KOREA SAYS NORTH LAUNCHED ICBM, TWO OTHER MISSILES: South Korea said that North Korea test-launched what's suspected to be an intercontinental ballistic missile and two short-range missiles Wednesday, with it taking place hours after President Biden left the region after a five-day Asian trip. It would be the North's first ICBM launch in about two months, and its 17th round of missile firings this year. U.S., South Korean and Japanese officials have also said North Korea could soon conduct its first nuclear test in nearly five years.

➤OHIO MAN FROM IRAQ PLOTTED TO KILLED EX-PREZ GEORGE W. BUSH: A 52-year-old Ohio man who came to the U.S. from Iraq two years ago and applied for asylum plotted to kill former President George W. Bush in retaliation for deaths during the Iraq war, the federal government revealed yesterday. A criminal complaint says that Shihab Ahmed Shihab Shihab also planned to smuggle other Iraqis into the U.S. from Mexico to help in the plot, and then smuggle them back out again. Confidential informants told the FBI about the plot starting in April 2021, and AP said it didn't appear that the plan came close to happening. Shahib allegedly told a confidential informant that he aided in killing U.S. soldiers during the Iraq war, and that he and others wanted to kill Bush, quote, "because they felt that he was responsible for killing many Iraqis and breaking apart the entire country of Iraq." Shihab was ordered held without bond by a judge.

⛪SOUTHERN BAPTIST LEADERS SAYS WILL RELEASE LIST OF ABUSERS: Top administrative leaders for the Southern Baptist Convention said Tuesday that they will release what has been a secret list of hundreds of pastors and other church-affiliated personnel who've been accused of sexual abuse. That news came two days after the release of an independent investigation report that found leaders of the Protestant denomination stonewalled and denigrated survivors of clergy sex abuse over almost two decades. The report also revealed that two past top officials had kept a private list of abusive pastors, which the leaders now anticipate releasing on Thursday. Willie McLaurin, the Southern Baptist Convention's Executive Committee’s interim president and CEO, issued a formal public apology to all those who were victims of sexual abuse and said, "Now is the time to change the culture. We have to be proactive in our openness and transparency from now."

💸STUDY...PEOPLE WHO USE MOBILE PAYMENTS ARE MORE LIKELY TO OVERSPEND:  Many people now use their mobile phones to make contactless payments, but you might want to rethink that. University of Puget Sound researchers found that people who use these payment methods are more likely to overspend. They found people who used mobile payments specifically had a 34 percent higher chance of spending more than their yearly income compared to those who used other payment methods. They also had consistently higher scores for overspending behaviors, including struggles with money management, and poor credit card behaviors. Study leader Sun Ahn says, “Overspending via mobile payment may be linked to the intangible nature of the transaction, coupled with its convenience, which allows the user to detach from the transaction.”

💰HIGH PRICES MAKE THE WEALTHY FEEL ENTITLED TO UNSUSTAINABLE GOODS: It seems unsustainable goods are more appealing to wealthy people, even if they’re expensive. Penn State researchers found upper-class people were more likely to buy unsustainable goods, like individually packaged snacks, when they had a higher price tag. Further analysis found this was because the higher price made them feel entitled to the benefits of these products despite the cost to the environment. This also extended to other “socially costly” situations, like traveling to a beach that was suffering environmental damage from too many tourists. However, when participants were encouraged to think of everyone being equal, this effect went away. Researcher Karen Winterich explains, “If we want to turn off the purchase of socially costly products, then we need to focus on messaging strategies that encourage people to think more about the overall equality of human beings. When we prompt people to think about equality, or to think more about the environment, then we can circumvent this effect and make them not as likely to accept these social costs just because they paid a high price for the product.”

🛬WHY YOUNG PEOPLE ARE USING OLD SCHOOL TRAVEL AGENTS TO PLAN THEIR VACATIONS:  Pandemic lockdowns have eased, but travel is still tricky. To help navigate the challenges, people are turning to travel agents rather than booking trips themselves online—like the old days. Virtuoso, a travel network with more than 20,000 advisers (the terms many people use instead of “agent” now) globally, has seen a 50 percent increase in demand in the last year alone, with millennials and Gen Xers being the fastest growing portion of new clients. The American Society of Travel Advisors, with 17,000 members, reports that 76 percent of advisors are seeing a jump in demand, while elite travel companies say they are turning away new clients. In the not-so-distant past, travel agents were nearly obsolete, but post-pandemic flight cancellations, chronic understaffing, COVID testing requirements that vary widely and can be confusing, and cost jumps in hotel rates in airline tickets have made their knowledge and connections a commodity once again.

🏀MAVERICKS BEAT WARRIORS TO FEND OFF SWEEP IN WESTERN CONF. FINALS: The Dallas Mavericks defeated the Golden State Warriors 119-109 last night (May 24th), fending off a sweep in the NBA's Western Conference Finals. Luka Doncic led Dallas with 30 points and 14 rebounds, and Dorian Finney-Smith added 23 points. Golden State now leads 3 games to 1, with Game 5 set for Thursday night in California. No NBA team has ever come back from a 3-0 deficit to win a series.

🏒NHL PLAYOFFS: Results from second-round games yesterday:
  • New York Rangers 4, Carolina Hurricanes 1 - Series tied 2-2
  • Edmonton Oilers 5, Calgary Flames 3 - Edmonton leads series 3-1

⚾PEDERSON HITS THREE HOMERS IN GIANTS' WIN OVER METS: San Francisco outfielder Joc Pederson hit three home runs in the Giants' 13-12 win over the New York Mets last night. Pederson drove in a career-high overall eight runs, including a tying single with two outs in the ninth inning. Two of his home runs were two-run homers, and the last was a three-run home run with two outs in the eighth inning to erase the Mets' 11-8 lead.

🎾MEDVEDEV, TSITSIPAS AMONG DAY THREE WINNERS AT FRENCH OPEN: Second-seeded Daniil Medvedev and Number 4 Stefanos Tsitsipas were among the first-round winners on Day 3 at the French Open Tuesday. Winners on the women's side included third-seeded Paola Badosa and Number 7 Aryna Sabalenka.

🏈WOMEN WHO'VE ACCUSED WATSON ANGERED BY BROWNS' SIGNING: Two of the 22 women who've accused quarterback Deshaun Watson of sexual misconduct during massage sessions expressed anger in an interview that aired last night on HBO's Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel over the Cleveland Browns signing him to a $230 million contact. Ashley Solis said, "It's just like a big 'screw you.' That's what it feels like. That we don't care. He can run and throw, and that's what we care about." Kyla Hayes called it "sick," saying, "I felt like he's being rewarded for bad behavior." Watson has denied any wrongdoing, and two grand juries declined to pursue criminal charges against him. The NFL is investigating whether Watson violated its code of conduct policy.

FEDERAL FORECASTERS PREDICT ANOTHER BUSY ATLANTIC HURRICANE SEASON: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration yesterday (May 24th) predicted another busy Atlantic hurricane season for a record seventh straight year. The federal meteorologists forecast that there will be 14 to 21 named storms, six to 10 of them becoming hurricanes, and three to six of them becoming major hurricanes. There were a record-setting 30 named storms in 2020 and 21 of them last year. There have been more Category 4 and 5 hurricane landfalls in the U.S. in the past five years than in the previous 50 years combined.

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