October 4, 2020 News Summary
US Politics and Economics
Following President Donald Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis, others, especially Republicans who have come into contact with the president, reported also testing positive. The “superspreading event,” supposedly a ceremony honoring Supreme Court Justice nominee Amy Coney Barrett, allegedly caused John Jenkins, former counselor to the President, Kellyanne Conway, Senator Mike Lee of Utah, Thom Tillis of North Carolina, and Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie to all test positive for COVID-19. A few of those listed above are currently being hospitalized as a precaution.
Meanwhile, the President posted a video on twitter thanking his doctors and other medical professionals at Walter Reed Medical Hospital. President Trump says he is feeling much better, and figures from both sides of the political spectrum and leaders from around the world are wishing him a speedy recovery.
Identified as a domestic terrorism threat by the FBI, QAnon, a far-right conspiracy theory, claims that a mysterious “government official named ‘Q’ is exposing a plot against Trump by ‘deep-state’ actors involving satanism and child sex trafficking.” The resolution, "Condemning QAnon and rejecting the conspiracy theories it promotes," passed in the U.S. House of Representatives, 371 to 18 in favor. Among the 18 who voted against the resolution were four Texas Representatives: Jodey Arrington of Lubbock, Brian Babin of Woodville, Michael Burgess of Lewisville, and Bill Flores of Bryan. The four Representatives defend themselves, arguing that the resolution was a “political stunt,” and “House leadership should instead be focused on addressing the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
According to CDC’s COVID Data Tracker, as of October 4, 2020, 12:17 PM, there are almost 7.36 cases and 208.8k deaths recorded nationwide. According to the data, California leads with the most infections at a total of 819.4k, and Texas follows with 763k cases.
(TexasTribune) Texas state and business leaders hope that the rapid development of vaccines will restore society in Texas, and allow Texans to return to aspects of their daily lives more safely during the pandemic.
World Politics and Economics
An Australian man, Stipe Lozina, has been sentenced to 3 years in prison for assaulting a pregnant Muslim woman last November. Per CNN's report, Rana Elasmar was 38 weeks pregnant at the time and sitting at a Sydney cafe. After allegedly making a racist remark, Lozina punched Elasmar and stomped on her head after she fell to the ground. At the trial, Lozina pleaded guilty but denied being Islamophobic or the attack being racist, defending, “I don't hate them, but I don't get along with them. I've got no business with them.”
Science and Technology
ExoMars 2022, a rover with the mission of studying Mars more in depth, and will hopefully be landed at a site “with high potential for finding well-preserved organic material, particularly from the very early history of the planet.” The launch, expected between September and October of 2022, will allow the rover to land on the Martian surface by June of 2023. Mattia Mercolino, ExoMars principal systems engineer, states in detail that “we had several transfer trajectories to choose from and a spacecraft already built for the trip. These variables imposed on us constraints linked to power, temperature thresholds, and orientation towards Earth during the first stages of the flight, among others.”
Per BBC, over 200 security experts and hackers have joined the group named “Election Cyber Surge.” The reasoning was to “place effort in data protection” and ensure that the election would run smoothly. Beatrice Atobatele, for instance, specializes in hacking and had recently attended a conference, discovering voting machines on eBay. Atobatele intends to look “for security vulnerabilities, but not with any criminal intentions.”
Southeast US Weather
(Atlantic) By stalling next to the Yucatan peninsula, tropical storm Gamma has devastated the area. Presently, PTC 26 has formed in the Caribbean and is expected to make landfall in New Orleans as a Category 2 storm.
*PTC = “systems that are not yet tropical cyclones but that could intensify to produce tropical-storm impacts within the next 48 hours.”
(Pacific) Hurricane Marie is weakening and is expected to dissipate soon. On the other side of the Pacific, there have been two disturbances; one, unlike the other, has a moderate chance of forming.
(Local) Today’s weather forecast has not drastically changed regarding yesterday’s report. The high is around 90 degrees Fahrenheit, the low is in the upper 60s, and the chance of rainfall remains at 10%.
US Politics and Economics: Dylan, Miranda, Caleb, and Annabelle
Texas Politics: Stephanie, Vicki, and Megan
Health: Matthew and David
World Politics and Economics: Joseph Z., Vicki, Jake, and Alexander
Science and Technology: Bryan and Amelia
Southeast US Weather: Jade, Aiden, and Simon
Editor: VIA, Isabel, and Susanna
(All writers and editors are in middle to high school)