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Good morning! For decades, space travel was the privilege of only a handful of elite nations. Not anymore. Today you’ll meet a South African innovator who’s helping Africa emerge as the next space power. As America grapples with voter restriction laws, check out similar battles elsewhere that hold lessons. Look back at forgotten protests from past Olympics and pack your bags for travel … that could also make you rich.
Charu Sudan Kasturi, Senior Editor, and Liam Jamieson, Reporter
The family of a 15-year-old who died when a Tesla car on autopilot hit their pickup truck is now suing the electric vehicle manufacturer. It’s the latest lawsuit to question the safety standards of Tesla cars, which the company says are safer because of the autopilot function. (Source: NYT)
2. Big Tech’s Big Threat
Leading tech giants including Google, Facebook and Twitter have threatened to leave Hong Kong if the city goes ahead with planned changes to privacy laws that could hold the companies liable for doxxing, the practice of exposing someone’s personal details online to harass them. Hong Kong has witnessed a surge in doxxing cases of late. (Sources: WSJ, Reuters)
3. Diversity Dig
A leaked audio recording in which ESPN analyst Rachel Nichols, who is white, suggests that Black colleague Maria Taylor is getting better assignments because of the company’s efforts to improve its “crappy longtime record on diversity” has set off a storm in sports media. To many African American professionals, it’s a reminder of the passive-aggressive jibes they endure as they rise. Do you think Nichols’ comment reflects a deeper problem? Vote here or on Twitter. (Sources: NYT, Fox, Ebony)
4. Devious Delta
The spread of the Delta variantof COVID-19 first discovered in India has dramatically cut the effectiveness of the Pfizer vaccine in preventing infections from over 91% to just 64%, data from Israel suggests. (Sources: Haaretz, FT, AP)
5. Bolsonaro Blues
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, already facing a congressional probe over his handling of the pandemic and allegations of corruption over a vaccine deal, has now been hit by claims that as a legislator, he would skim money from the salaries of his staff. (Sources: Guardian, Al Jazeera)
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Lowering costs are making it easier for African countries and companies to launch their satellites.Ndaba is the co-founder of Astrofica Technologies, a fully Black-owned South African satellite manufacturer that’s serving the continent’s growing demand for access to the cosmos. Space has been Ndaba’s calling since she saw a photo of a rocket engine in a textbook given to her by her grandmother. A generation from now, South African students might well find Ndaba’s photo in their textbooks.
2. Lucas Fonseca
Growing up in the 1980s, Fonseca devoured classic sci-fi films, from E.T. to Aliens. Now he’s got his eyes set on the future of Brazil’s space industry, which was born in 1960 but is still small compared to the U.S., Russia, China, India and Europe.His startup Airvantis works with the International Space Station on zero gravity experiments. It’s also an incubator for Brazil’s first proposed commercial lunar mission, an ambitious project that could place Brazil’s space program among the world’s leading extraterrestrial initiatives.
3. Neha Satak
The 37-year-old Indian engineer with cropped hair and a ready smile is challenging the giants of the private space industry, promising something Musk and Bezos can’t offer yet. Her startup, Astrome, is building satellite transponders that have 11 times more capacity than traditional transponders, and could revolutionize internet access in remote parts of the world.Read more on OZY.
Today on ‘The Carlos Watson Show’
Zola star Riley Keough reveals the secret to transforming a viral Twitter thread into a must-see movie. Elvis Presley’s granddaughter shares the role family has played in her life and talks about why she became a death doula. Watch later today.
Even the world’s largest democracy faces voter suppression. In both state and national elections, many Muslims, women and lower-caste Dalits are finding themselves missing from official electoral rolls despite providing proper identification. Voting rights groups have popped up, including Missing Voters, an election watchdog smartphone app that tracks marginalized voters. It estimates 120 million citizens’ names were absent from voter lists in India’s 2019 national election.
No battle for voting rights may be quite as serious as this East African nation’s. Ahead of the country’s presidential elections in January, authoritarian President Yoweri Museveni’s opponents faced intimidation, arrests and even death. The government blocked social media — used disproportionately by urban, younger voters more aligned with his opponent, popular singer Bobi Wine — two days before the vote. Museveni controversially won a sixth term; Uganda’s already fragile democracy lost.
We all know about the Black Power salute at the 1968 Mexico Games. Here are some often forgotten but also significant protests from past Olympics. Will we see anything similar at the Tokyo Games later this month?
Voyaging to the 1906 Games in Athens suited in a green blazer and shamrock-emblazoned cap, Irish long jumper Peter O’Connor was forced to compete for Britain due to a technicality. He won the silver, but was unwilling to stand under the Union Jack at the medal podium. Instead, O’Connor protested in an athletic act of defiance, scaling the flagpole with the Irish Erin go Bragh flag to replace its British counterpart.
2. Silence Against Soviets
Tommie Smith and John Carlos’ Black Power salutes were not the only acts of protest at the ‘68 Games. After Soviet-led forces invaded Czechoslovakia, crushing the “Prague Spring” earlier in the year, Czech gymnast Vera Caslavska protested on the medal stand in a seemingly small but astonishingly powerful way: turning her head away from the Soviet flag while the invaders’ anthem played.
3. Guilty Accomplice
It’s hard to imagine New Zealand as a provocateur today, yet it was once just that. Violating global sporting sanctions against apartheid-era South Africa, the Kiwi rugby team toured that country. After the International Olympics Committee refused to punish New Zealand, 28 African countries boycotted the 1976 Montreal Games just days before the competition commenced.
Travel to Earn
After a year of lockdowns and economic hits, we could all use some extra money and some travel. What if you got both — together?
You shouldn’t need much incentive to travel to this Mediterranean archipelago that sits between Sicily and Libya. But if you do, how about hard cash to thank you for your visit? Since June, Malta’s tourism department has beenpaying travelers hundreds of dollars for three-day hotel stays, with the hotels matching that amount to give you double the joy.
If you want to save while soaking in Caribbean sun and sand, Barbados is where you need to head. Amid the pandemic, the country launched a 12-month visa for nomad workers and their families. Sure, you need to pay $2,000 upfront (or $3,000 for a family), but you’re exempt from income tax during your stay there.
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