What should I do if I got the Johnson & Johnson vaccine?
Dr. Balram Bhargava, head of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), said in an interview that lockdown restrictions should remain in place in all districts where the rate of infection is above 10% of those tested. Currently, three-fourths of India's 718 districts have what is known as a test-positivity rate above 10%, including major cities like New Delhi, Mumbai and the tech hub of Bengaluru. Bhargava's comments are the first time a senior government official has outlined how long lockdowns, which already encompass large parts of country, need to continue to rein in the crisis in India.
- The Week
An anti-vax conspiracy theory is apparently making anti-maskers consider masking up, social distancing
"A conspiracy ripping through the anti-vax world may finally drive some anti-maskers to do the unthinkable: wear a mask and keep their distance," Vice News reports. The conspiracy theory claims, falsely, that vaccinated people "shed" certain proteins that can infect unvaccinated people and cause some sort of harm, usually tied to reproduction. ("It is biologically impossible for a vaccinated person to spread the vaccine to someone who hasn’t been vaccinated," The Associated Press says.) For those who do believe that vaccinated people can somehow infect them with vaccine proteins — one private school in Miami barred vaccinated teachers from interacting with unvaccinated students — some "anti-vax influencers" are suggesting they protect themselves by "social distancing, the very strategy the have long decried," Vice reports. Others "conspiracy theorists are wondering if perhaps their longtime bane, the mask, could become their salvation." Several people who study the anti-vax and anti-mask movements said they are skeptical mask-wearing will take hold in those communities. Other observers found the conundrum delightful and perhaps a little too perfect to be true. This is the type of conspiracy theory that a competent government would seed — Joe Colangelo (@Itsjoeco) May 12, 2021 In any case, "while the conspiracy is baseless, the fear it is causing vaccine skeptics is very real," Vice says. "And where there is a fear, there's money to be made." You can read more at Vice News. More stories from theweek.comTed Cruz walks out of gun violence hearing after failing to change the subjectStudy: In 2 decades, nearly 146 million acres of forest have regrown naturally across the worldThe collapse of the GOP? It's just wishful thinking
- Associated Press
Iran's former firebrand president will run again for office in upcoming elections in June, raising the possibility of a bolstered hardline leadership at a time of tense negotiations with the West. Thronged by shouting supporters, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad marched to a registration center at the Interior Ministry where he filled out registration forms. “My presence today for registration was based on demand by millions for my participation in the election,” he said, adding that the move also came after “considering the situation of the country, and the necessity for a revolution in the management of the country.”
- The Daily Beast
Comedy CentralThe Daily Show host Trevor Noah on Tuesday addressed the recent tensions in the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine—as much as could reasonably be done in the time it takes to boil an egg.In recent days, Israeli police clashed with Palestinians at a Jerusalem mosque, nine children were among at least two dozen people killed by Israeli airstrikes, and Gaza militants fired rockets of their own at Israel, killing three.Noah, who acknowledged that there isn’t “any TV show [that] in ten minutes is going to solve [the] Israel-Palestine [problem],” did make some keen observations.For one, as a topic that has perplexed even the world’s best diplomats, it is even harder to unravel if no one can agree on where to begin analyzing it.“If you start from ‘Israel fired rockets into Gaza,’ then Israel is the bad guy, because they’re bombing Gaza,” Noah explained. “But then you take a step back in time, and you go, ‘Well, but Hamas fired rockets at Israel.’ Then Hamas is the bad guy. But then you take a step back, and you go, ‘But the Israeli police went in and started beating people up in a mosque during Ramadan, the most holy time in the Muslim calendar.’ Well then, Israel is the bad guy.”MSNBC Host Challenges Ex-Israel Ambassador on Possible ‘War Crimes’ “And back and back and back, and who knows how far. The first cavemen who hit each other with clubs were probably Israeli and Palestinian. I don’t know.”Noah then pointed out the relative superiority of the Israeli military because of its ability to produce high-end, high-tech weapons (in part thanks to U.S. funding).“I just want to ask an honest question here,” Noah said. “If you are in a fight where the other person cannot beat you, how much should you retaliate when they try to hurt you?”“Everyone has a different answer to the question, and I’m not trying to answer the question, nor do I think I’m smart enough to solve it. All I ask is, when you have this much power, what is your responsibility?”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
The officer involved is allegedly the director of Hong Kong's National Security Department.
When lifelong Wyoming Republican Tage Benson and Democrat Chamois Andersen met for the first time at the Owl in the Attic antiques store in Laramie this past weekend, they quickly put their political differences aside. Their home state's embattled Republican congresswoman, Liz Cheney, needed to be supported, they agreed, for standing up to former President Donald Trump and contesting his false stolen-election claims. “This is where Democrats and Republicans can come together,” said Anderson, 51, a wildlife advocate who often disagrees with Cheney on policy.
- Associated Press
The number of unaccompanied children encountered on the U.S. border with Mexico in April eased from an all-time high a month earlier, while more adults were found coming without families, authorities said Tuesday. Authorities encountered 17,171 children traveling alone, down 9% from 18,960 in March, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, but still well above the previous high of 11,475 reported in May 2019 by the Border Patrol, which began publishing numbers in 2009. Overall, the Border Patrol’s 173,460 encounters with migrants on the Mexican border in April were up 3% from 169,213 in March, the highest level since April 2000.
- The Independent
Republicans accuse Democrats of ‘rigging’ elections as divided Senate to consider voting rights bill
Amy Klobuchar says ‘stakes could not be higher’ as deadlocked committee vote signals battle ahead on For The People Act and filibuster
- Associated Press
Rep. Jamie Herrera Beutler, one of 10 Republican U.S. House members who voted to impeach Donald Trump for his role in the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, says she will vote to retain Rep. Liz Cheney in Republican leadership. Cheney, who also voted to impeach the former president, is expected to be ousted from her position this week. “Jaime will be voting to keep the House leadership in place,” Beutler's spokesman Craig Wheeler told The Seattle Times in an email.
- Business Insider
"I had no inkling really just how conservative he was. I blame myself," Stanford historian David Kennedy told The Washington Post.
- Business Insider
A Texas judge threw out the NRA's bankruptcy case, clearing the way for New York's attempts to dissolve the group
New York Attorney General Letitia James sued the NRA in August, accusing the organization of corruption and seeking to dissolve it.
- Associated Press
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer threatened Tuesday to go after Enbridge's profits from a Great Lakes oil pipeline if the company defies her order to shut it down. The Democratic governor issued the warning in a letter to the Canadian energy transport company on the eve of a state-imposed deadline to halt operation of Line 5, which moves oil through northern Wisconsin and Michigan to refineries in Ontario. Enbridge repeated its intention to defy Whitmer's demand.
- Miami Herald
Juan Camilo Suárez was standing on a street in the Colombian city of Cali on a recent evening, lighting candles in homage to those killed in the nation’s recent unrest, when he suddenly found himself in the midst of violence.
Florida's gasoline supply is mostly unaffected by the hack, but an uptick in panic buying has led to local shortages, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.
The magical school of witchcraft and wizardry is the backdrop for much of the fantasy series, but even superfans might not know these secrets.
- The Telegraph
A young British woman was strangled to death in front of her baby daughter while her husband was tied up in another room in their home in Athens. The horrific killing of 20-year-old Caroline Crouch in front of her 11-month-old daughter is highly unusual in Greece and has shocked the country. A special police task force has been ordered to investigate the murder, with a manhunt currently underway to identify the attackers.
- The Daily Beast
Carlos Gil/GettyROME—Last week, Salvatore Martello, the mayor of the Sicilian island of Lampedusa, which is just 8 square miles in area, bragged that his island was nearly COVID-free after all of its residents would soon be fully vaccinated.Now, islanders are panicking after more than 2,000 migrants and refugees from all over unvaccinated Africa started arriving in smugglers’ boats on Saturday. By Sunday, 20 boats in all had arrived, carrying some 2,000 desperate souls who had somehow skirted the Libyan Coast Guard and made it all the way across the calm sea.Migrants Rescued at Sea Between Death and HopeLocal business owners voiced concerns that the arrival of migrants en masse has already scared off many people planning their holidays. The owner of the Hotel Baja Turchese said he had received several cancellations by people who were coming because they thought the island would be COVID-free.“The migrants change the dynamic, because even if they have to quarantine and get tested, they have already potentially brought the virus back to the island,” he told The Daily Beast.But many of the asylum-seekers escaping to the island had no choice but to flee the poverty, violence, and persecution they faced in their home countries.On Monday, most of the migrants had been processed and, based on their interviews, were primarily from sub-Saharan Africa, including countries like Eritrea and Somalia that have not yet received a single dose of anti-COVID vaccines. Others were migrant workers who had been laboring in the oil fields of conflict-ridden Libya, where they suffered through consistent wage theft, discrimination and waves of violent civil strife.Because the tiny reception center on the island is not conducive to social distancing, most were made to sleep on the hot pavement under the scorching sun in the dock area to avoid potentially infecting islanders. Until Sunday, the migrant center had been empty for nearly two years.“The situation on Lampedusa is literally explosive,” Domenico Pianese, a police official, said in a statement to local media. “If we have another day like yesterday, with an incessant succession of disembarking, it won’t be possible to manage public and health safety.”The island, which is closer to North Africa than Europe, has long been a magnet for migrants who have crashed their rickety blue fishing boats onto its rocky shores. The island hit a near breaking point in 2011, when thousands of people escaping Arab Spring violence in North Africa arrived.Libya’s Migrant ‘Holding Areas’ Have Become Death CampsBut in 2014, when NGO rescue boats started patrolling the seas after Italy’s government-sponsored Mare Nostrum rescue mission ended, boats carrying migrants were often intercepted and rarely made it to Lampedusa, allowing the island to beef up its tourism industry. This summer, they were hoping for a windfall with stir-crazy Europeans looking for remote beaches and guaranteed sun.It is unclear if Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s recent trip to Libya in any way changed the Libyan Coast Guard’s response to the latest exodus. Italy has trained and funded the Libyan coastguards and supplied them with boats, even as they have been accused of—and caught on video committing—horrific human rights abuses, including shooting at and leaving migrants to drown.When they are intercepted by Libyan coastguards, the migrants are usually taken to squalid detention centers until smugglers, working with complicit guards, try to get them across the sea again. On Monday, the Libyan coastguards stopped some 600 migrants on several smuggler ships from departing, according to UNHCR.The migrants and refugees that arrived will all have to quarantine and be tested, Martello says, and many will isolate on ferries docked off the island or be shuttled to the considerably larger land mass of Sicily. A massive ship is on its way to the island to offer additional accommodation. The bulk of the tests should be done by the end of the week. No COVID test results have yet been released.So far this year, some 12,000 migrants have made it across the sea to Italy—four times the number that made it last year in the same time frame. They have come either on their own in fishing boats or were rescued by one of just a couple of NGO boats allowed to deliver them to land. Late Monday, the NGO group Alarm Phone, which tries to alert authorities to boats in trouble, reported that around 400 people were languishing on boats between Malta and Lampedusa. By nightfall, no one had rescued them.In April, Italy was criticized by humanitarian groups after ignoring distress calls from a boat off Libya, which eventually capsized. At least 130 people were thought to have drowned in that accident. So far this year, around 500 migrants are known to have died at sea trying to reach safety. And they won’t be the last, especially if the group on Lampedusa are viewed only as COVID threats.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
- Associated Press
Scores of dead bodies have been found floating down the Ganges River in eastern India as the country battles a ferocious surge in coronavirus infections. Authorities said Tuesday they haven't yet determined the cause of death. Health officials working through the night Monday retrieved 71 bodies, officials in Bihar state said.
- Reuters Videos
Men in western India are smearing cow dung all over their arms, head and entire bodies.In Hinduism, the cow is a sacred symbol of life and earth and for centuries Hindus have used cow dung to clean their homes and for prayer rituals.In the state of Gujarat, these participants believe that the dung can even ward off COVID-19.Cow dung therapy participant Gautam Manilal Borisa, "We see corona warriors, even doctors come here. Their belief is that this therapy improves their immunity and they can go and tend to patients with no fear."But, Doctors say there is no scientific evidence for its effectiveness and that it risks spreading other diseases.Dr. Ja Jayalal is the national president at the Indian Medical Association."There is no scientific evidence to prove the cow dung can be used as treatment or immunity booster against the corona infection which is prevailing. People should also understand that using the excreta of cow, which has been considered a sacred animal, that is bound to increase some zoonotic or infectious disease more."Yet, believers continue to go to a cow shelter once a week.They hug or honour the cows and practice yoga to boost their energy levels.There are concerns the practice could contribute to the spread of the virus as it involves people gathering in groups, but shelter representatives says they are limiting the number of people. The coronavirus pandemic has devastated India, with some 22 million cases and over 246,000 deaths reported so far.Experts say actual numbers could be five to 10 times higher.Citizens across the country are struggling to find hospital beds, oxygen, or medicines, leaving many to die for lack of treatment.
- Business Insider
Records show Caitlyn Jenner voted in the 2020 election despite claiming to CNN that she went golfing instead
"And so it was Election Day and I just couldn't get excited about it. And I just wound up going to play golf," Jenner told CNN.