Juneteenth commemorates the Emancipation Proclamation
Americans around the country on Friday will celebrate Juneteenth, a holiday commemorating the Emancipation Proclamation in the United States. This year, the annual celebration of freedom comes as the country grapples with its long-standing history of systemic racism, as well as the fate of its Confederate monuments, flags and symbols amid nationwide protests against police brutality and racism after the death of George Floyd. Also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, Juneteenth is a combination of "June" and "nineteenth," marking the day in 1865 that a U.S. major general announced to Texans that slavery had been abolished. News of President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation of two years earlier had not made it to the Lone Star State until then.
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Former Atlanta officer charged in Brooks' death to appear in court
Both Atlanta police officers involved in last week's fatal shooting of Rayshard Brooks turned themselves in and were booked in Fulton County jail Thursday. Garrett Rolfe, accused of felony murder and 10 other charges, surrendered in the afternoon and is being held without bond. "He is confident that when all of the evidence is heard, Officer Rolfe will be vindicated," his lawyer, Lance LoRusso, said in a statement. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Thursday that Rolfe is scheduled to appear in a Fulton County Magistrate's Court at noon Friday. Officer Devin Brosnan, who was charged with aggravated assault and other lesser counts, came in at 10:30 a.m., Thursday and was released on bond two hours later, according to his lawyer, Don Samuel. Rolfe, who was fired after the shooting and Brosnan, who has kept his job but has been placed on desk duty, both contend their actions were justified.
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Trump vs. Bolton: Scathing critique could define tell-all book battles
The White House's fight with ex-national security adviser John Bolton heads to the U.S. District Court in Washington on Friday — and will likely define future cases between the government and former employees seeking to write tell-alls. The government asked a federal court for a temporary restraining order to prevent the book's release, claiming it contains classified material. Bolton's lawyer says that after working for months with the White House to edit, rewrite or remove sensitive information, his client received a verbal clearance from a National Security Council expert. But he never got a formal clearance letter, and the Trump administration contends the book, titled "The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir," still contains sensitive material. Meanwhile, the 577-page book, set to be released Tuesday, is already sitting in warehouses and media outlets have obtained advance copies and published stories.
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Theater chain Cinemark to begin reopening, won't require masks
Cinemark, the third-largest movie theater chain in the U.S., announced this week it would begin a phased reopening plan, starting Friday with several theaters in Texas. The reopening is the first in a four-phase process, which will see all 555 locations open for moviegoers again by July 17, if all goes according to plan. Cinemark is "strongly encouraging" people visiting their theaters to wear masks, but it is not requiring it. AMC Entertainment, the world's largest theater chain, also won't require patrons to wear masks when it begins opening in the U.S. in July, but it will encourage the practice. However, when AMC CEO Adam Aron explained the reasoning behind his company's mask policy in an interview with Variety, it triggered an online backlash. "We did not want to be drawn into a political controversy," Aron said. He added that, "We thought it might be counterproductive if we forced mask wearing ..."
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JetBlue gets ready to put its parked planes back in the air this summer
Tickets go on sale Friday for new summer routes on JetBlue as the airline begins to ramp up service as cities begin to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic. Between July and October, the New York-based airline will add 30 new routes tailored to leisure travelers who want to see friends and relatives after months in lockdown. In addition, JetBlue is restoring nine routes that were temporarily halted during the height of the pandemic as well as service to several popular summer destinations such as Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, Massachusetts; Providence, Rhode Island; and the Puerto Rican cities of Aguadilla and Ponce.
JetBlue ramps service back up with 30 new routes, adds back summer routes
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Contributing: Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Juneteenth celebration, Trump vs. Bolton: 5 things to know Friday