Jordan, who served as a close adviser to President Bill Clinton, has died at the age of 85. Starting in the 1960s, Jordan campaigned against segregation and racial discrimination, working with organizations such as the NAACP and National Urban League, which he led as president for 10 years. While he’s most closely associated with Clinton, he worked with presidents from both parties from Lyndon Johnson through Barack Obama. Voting rights activist Stacey Abrams was among those mourning “the extraordinary Vernon Jordan. He battled the demons of voter suppression and racial degradation, winning more than he lost.”
Nigerian government officials said all 279 schoolgirls kidnapped last week have been freed. The students, who’d been taken from their boarding school in the northern state of Zamfara, were mostly in good health, the state governor said Tuesday. While 317 were initially reported missing on Friday, the government later revised the figure. The spate of school kidnappings started in 2014 when Islamist militant group Boko Haram abducted more than 270 girls from the town of Chibok, some 100 of whom remain missing. More recently criminal gangs have been kidnapping children for ransom.
“Please stay strong.” That’s the message from CDC Director Rochelle Walensky after weeks of greatly reduced COVID-19 cases that may be lulling Americans into easing pandemic precautions. Cases rose 2 percent last week, and authorities fear that new variants could launch another infection wave. One thing that will help is speeding up vaccinations. Immunologist Dr. Anthony Fauci urged Americans to get whatever shot is available, noting that all three approved varieties are effective. Meanwhile, a White House adviser told The New York Times that former President Donald Trump and the first lady quietly received their vaccinations in January.
It’s a first. No modern French president had been sentenced to jail on corruption charges until yesterday, when a Paris court found former President Nicholas Sarkozy guilty of bribing a magistrate. The court sentenced him to three years, but suspended two — and the final year could be served in home detention. Sarkozy, who led France from 2007 to 2012, still faces another trial on charges of illegal campaign spending in 2012 and a probe into alleged illegal campaign contributions from Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi in 2007. Sarkozy denies any wrongdoing and plans to appeal.
Which current or former leader do you think will be locked up next? Tell us here.
5. Progressives Desperate to Salvage $15 Wage
As the U.S. Senate debates a $1.9 trillion pandemic relief package, Democratic leaders including President Joe Biden have jettisoned plans to include a $15 hourly federal minimum wage in order to get the package approved. That’s upset progressives, who’ve asked Vice President Kamala Harris to overturn Senate rules that detached the wage issue from the relief package — a move that was necessary to sidestep the supermajority requirement Democrats can’t meet with their razor-thin majority. The aid package is slated to be approved by the Senate this week before supplemental unemployment benefits expire March 14.
Southeast Asian foreign ministers will meet today to discuss the crisis in Myanmar and call for the release of civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The U.S. has extradited a father and son to Japan for allegedly aiding former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn’s escape from the country. And Angelina Jolie has sold an artwork by former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, a keen painter, at an auction for a record $11.5 million.
Coronavirus Update: France and Canada have reached different conclusions on the use of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, with the former giving the green light for over-65s to be inoculated, while a Canadian health committee is advising against its use in seniors.
This week on The Carlos Watson Show we're remembering The Rule Breakers — change-makers who break barriers and defy the odds. Today that's legendary filmmaker Ava DuVernay, who’s changing the male gaze in Hollywood. She’s no stranger to making statements with her work, but in the past year she's been especially busy. She tells Carlos about how she's flipping the script with new projects like ARRAY, her production company that amplifies the stories of women and people of color, and LEAP, her new initiative to hold law enforcement accountable through art. Find out why she's "anxious but hopeful" and hear the surprising controversy behind her biggest regret.
Alopecia areata, an autoimmune disease in which patients lose hair in random patches, impacts 2 percent of people globally. Yet at the moment, there are no FDA-approved treatments for the condition. Now new cutting-edge research is illuminating the path forward against this disease.
It’s called the “Loyal Wingman.” But to many, it’s another step in the evolution of killer robots able to rain death from the skies. Boeing’s new aircraft, the first developed in Australia in 50 years, made its inaugural flight Saturday, but the Royal Australian Air Force and the U.S. Air Force’s Skyborg project are already customers. Designed to be a companion to human-piloted jets, the 2,300-mile range craft can also be outfitted with various payloads to suit global customers who may have other plans. And it has competition: Northern Ireland’s Spirit AeroSystems is developing its own pilotless warplane.
Will it be over by the time you read this? TikTok’s short videos are conquering the world, and Alphabet wants a piece of that action as it rolls out the U.S. version of YouTube Shorts. The feature’s been popular to the tune of 3.5 billion daily views in India, where it launched in September. While Shorts features brief, phone-friendly vertical videos users can quickly swipe through — like China-based TikTok — so far it lacks bells and whistles such as filters and video effects. For old-school users, the same clips are available on normal YouTube.
It’s a triple threat: Kashmir residents have faced generations of warfare between India and militants resisting New Delhi’s authority. That came to a head when India stripped the region’s semi-autonomous status in 2019 and put 7,357 people in “preventive detention.” Normally courts would be the only way out, but the pandemic and an internet shutdown crippled that system as well, OZY reports. “At least give us a chance at [a] fair trial,” says a brother of one detainee. Now in-person hearings are finally due to resume, raising hopes that some fear will just be dashed anew.
“You go through men faster than Taylor Swift.” That’s a joke in the season finale of Netflix series Ginny & Georgia, only Swift isn’t laughing. The pop star took to Twitter to call out the streaming platform, saying “2010 called and it wants its lazy, deeply sexist joke back” and noting it should “stop degrading hard working women.” Angry fans threatened to boycott the series, while the singer pointed to another Netflix production, her own Miss Americana documentary, which looks at how the 31-year-old’s private life has been dissected by the press.
5. Spanish Police Make Arrests in ‘Barcagate’ Case
This won’t be settled with a penalty kick.Catalan police yesterday swooped in on the offices of FC Barcelona, one of the world’s top soccer teams, reportedly seizing documents and later arresting the club’s CEO, chief legal counsel and former president Josep Maria Bartomeu, who resigned in October. It’s part of “Barçagate,” in which team officials were accused of hiring a social media contractor to smear its critics — including superstar striker Lionel Messi and two presidential candidates. The club issued a statement offering “full collaboration” with the investigation.