Vaccinations, Catholic Church, Waffle House: Your Friday Night Briefing

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Good night. Here is the last one.

1. President Biden steps up his efforts for Americans to get vaccinated against Covid-19 as the disturbing Delta variant spreads in states with low vaccination rates.

As of Thursday, 65% of adults have had at least one injection, according to the CDC. It is increasingly likely that the United States will be just a short distance from meeting Biden’s July 4 target of having 70% of Americans partially immunized against the virus. On Friday, Biden warned that those who did not get the vaccine risked being infected with “a more easily transmitted, potentially more deadly and particularly dangerous variant for young people.”

Part of the vaccine failure can be attributed to Johnson & Johnson: Production issues and a brief hiatus on the use of its single-dose vaccine kept it from making a game-changer that health officials at across the country thought it would.

2. American Catholic Bishops Adopt Controversial Proposal on the communion which seeks to deny the sacrament to President Biden because of his position on abortion.

Ignoring a Vatican warning, the group voted overwhelmingly to draft a statement on the Sacrament of the Eucharist. The move squarely targets Biden, the country’s second Catholic president, who has attended mass regularly throughout his life. This decision reveals a uniquely American Catholicism increasingly at odds with Rome, writes our religious journalist.

Bishops are expected to vote on the next declaration in November, ahead of the midterm elections, and anti-abortion supporters already see a political opportunity in the bishops’ plan.

3. Many Iranians abstained from voting in a presidential election in which the die-hard conservative candidate looks set to win.

Some have argued that their votes would be meaningless in an election they see as manipulated in favor of Ebrahim Raisi, the Iranian justice chief, close to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Those who went to the polls encountered technical problems with electronic voting. Full results are expected on Saturday.

In other international news, United Nations General Assembly condemned the military coup in Myanmar in a rare reprimand, demanding an end to the five-month-old takeover.

4. The stock market suffered its biggest daily decline in more than a month, investors adjusting their interest rate expectations.

The S&P 500 fell 1.3%, the fourth consecutive daily decline, bringing the week’s losses to 1.9% – the worst performance in nearly four months. Wall Street focused on the Federal Reserve and the possibility of it raising interest rates or taking other steps to reduce its emergency support for the economy.

The central bank said this week it had no plans to change its policy immediately, but released projections showing most officials expected interest rates to start. to increase in 2023.

5. State legislatures controlled by Republicans seek to thwart President Biden’s gun control proposals.

New law threatens $ 50,000 fine for police in Missouri which enforce certain federal firearms laws. While the bill will most likely have little immediate impact on law enforcement, it is intended to guard against any future Washington gun control legislation. At least eight other Republican-controlled state legislatures have taken similar action, as in Texas, above.

In other GOP news, Arizona Republicans have attacked Katie Hobbs, the Democratic Secretary of State, for opposing their efforts to overthrow the presidential election. But he seemed to turn on him. Her star power in the state has grown rapidly and she is now running for governor.

6.Russia and other post-Soviet states use the English courts to pursue their enemies.

With lawyers and private investigators in London, Russia and other autocratic governments have armed British courts to wage a legal war against wealthy tycoons who have fallen out of favor and fled abroad in the decades since followed the fall of the Soviet Union. Above, the Royal Courts of Justice in London.

An investigation by The Times and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism reveals how high legal fees and questionable tactics by English courts, including a broad authority to examine evidence obtained by corruption, have created an environment where executives like the Russian President Vladimir Putin can legitimize their brutal form. politics.

7. Juneteenth is a national holiday now. Can he still be black?

That’s a question Kevin Young, director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, asks in a guest essay. “Can it be both serious and playful” and “rooted in tradition while telling the whole story of America and black life?” “

“I believe in an America that can do all of these things,” writes Young.

In many communities, Juneteenth is seen with contests to crown a Miss (and Mr.) Juneteenth, and these events also play a role in educating Americans for equality and freedom, said Opal Lee, who dedicated his life to making Juneteenth a national official. vacation.

“I want people to realize that this is not a Texas thing and it is not a black thing because none of us are free until we are all free and, God knows. that we are not yet free, ”she said.

8. “The art of losing is not difficult to master.”

Elizabeth Bishop begins her 1976 poem “One Art” with these words, forming the first of 19 lines that describe the anguish of loss and the ability to endure unhappiness.

In our latest Close Read, two of our critics examined every word of the poem – which still has the power to make many of its readers cry – and what they might have meant to the woman who wrote them.

Another language expert, Francesco Lepore, turned his mastery of Latin and his experience as a Vatican priest into a career as an author, columnist and gay rights activist. His column in Latin gives readers the latest news on “Ioannes Biden” and “bito nummario” (or bitcoin in English).

9. Give the sponge cake a chance.

Its name doesn’t move your heart, and it’s often dry and tasteless, but done right, the sponge cake is tender and bouncy and perfect for soaking up the flavors of whatever it’s paired with. Food collaborator Claire Saffitz shared some of her tips for making the perfect sponge, including using oil and cake flour and cooling cakes upside down.

For something salty, Melissa Clark offers a retro take on a party staple: spinach dip. His version gets a new garlic upgrade just in time for summer gatherings.

And if you celebrate the Juneteenth tomorrow, Nicole Taylor, author of the next cookbook “Watermelon and Red Birds”, selected these dishes for the holidays.

10. And finally, how would you spend 24 hours in a waffle house?

As punishment, a man who finished last in his fantasy football league was able to find out. On Thursday night, 25-year-old Lee Sanderlin walked into a waffle house in Brandon, Mississippi, and took the world on a journey. He tweeted while dutifully serving his sentence, regaling Twitter users with his thoughts on gastrointestinal boredom and distress.

For each waffle he ate, his sentence was reduced by one hour. At 6:37 a.m., Sanderlin said he had served his sentence, nine waffles and 15 hours later, and assured that he did tip the staff. Shortly after 7 a.m. he emerged in the light of day.

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