National Conference of State Legislatures: announcement – “Legislative interest in policing and police accountability is currently at an unprecedented high. Deaths and other confrontations involving law enforcement continue to drive national conversations about policy and promote review of current state and local laws. From May 25, 2020 through the end of 2020, 36 states and Washington D.C. introduced more than 700 bills addressing policy accountability, nearly 100 of which were enacted. NCSL, with support from Arnold Ventures, has produced a comprehensive, first-of-its kind database of law enforcement statutes covering topics detailed below. State Legislatures consider and enact laws that address many aspects of law enforcement policy. State law can set the baseline for the standard of practice in states, creating a foundation for state regulatory agencies and local jurisdictions to expand upon. The database paints a picture of what this baseline looks like in the states, covering a number of policy areas that play a key role in law enforcement effectiveness and accountability. This statutory database is part of a suite of resources NCSL has developed for legislatures to use as they make important policy decisions on law enforcement effectiveness and accountability.”
“The American Jewish Congress released a special report entitled “Capitol Storming: Neo-Nazi, QAnon and Antisemitic Online Chatter.” This report is part of an American Jewish Congress initiative to combat domestic terrorism, especially that which stems from white supremacist activity and Antisemitic extremism. This report provides in-depth analysis of the online chatter that took place in the immediate aftermath of the storming of the Capitol by far-right extremists on January 6th. Specifically, an analysis conducted after the attack of 24,000 right-wing Twitter accounts showed that 6% of these users engaged in insurrectionist discussion and that 40% of them were associated with the Antisemitic QAnon movement. As explained in the report, Antisemitism was pervasive throughout both the in-person and online activity surrounding the attack. The report provides multiple specific examples of such Antisemitic activity, which was a feature, not a bug, of the day’s violence.
The storming of the Capitol on January 6th by militant supporters of President Donald Trump featured several instances of Antisemitic agitation, from an extremist Holocaust denier who helped ransack House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) office to various individuals who displayed far-right and neo-Nazi slogans and symbols. In the aftermath of the attack on the Capitol, chatter in un-moderated open-source online channels has spiked, publishing alarming Antisemitic and anti Israel content, including death threats, calls for Jews to leave America, and depictions of Jewish symbols and Holocaust-related references…”
Janet Yellen was confirmed by the Senate to serve as Treasury secretary. She'll be the first woman to hold that post and will lead the Biden administration's efforts to address the pandemic recession.
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Vox: “The coronavirus pandemic has produced a ripe environment for text message phishing attacks. Such scams are socially engineered to exploit people’s vulnerable impulses, experts say, and sharply rose in 2020. Many Americans sign up for text message notifications and reminders, from health care providers to shipping services, but as SMS phishing becomes more widespread, consumers will have to exercise more vigilance with texts of unknown origins. According to the security firm Proofpoint, mobile phishing attempts increased by more than 300 percent in the third quarter of 2020, compared to the second. These scammers are primarily impersonating financial institutions and major technology companies, although the Proofpoint report noted that they’ve also zeroed in on “brands that consumers are frequently turning to during the pandemic.” The US Department of Health and Human Services warned the public in late December of potential fraud schemes related to Covid-19 tests, contact tracing, vaccine eligibility, and Medicare prescription cards. An unsuspecting recipient might be prompted to click on a hyperlink sent via text to confirm the delivery of a delayed package or to check the status of a Covid-19 test. The wording of these attacks might vary; people have received malicious texts about Netflix or Amazon accounts being locked due to a declined payment, for example. Regardless of the method, the scammer’s goal is to get away with a person’s financial details and personal data, which could be used for identity theft…”
A judge ruled Monday that security forces surrounding the home of Bobi Wine, who lost a disputed election to President Yoweri Museveni, must leave. It's not clear if the ruling will be obeyed.
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South Dakota has administered roughly 80,000 of the 106,000 doses it has received so far, or 75%. Dr. Shankar Kurra in Rapid City says a centralized system helped for coordination.
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Six takeaways from discussions at the annual meeting of the World Health Organization's Executive Board.
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In 1957, residents of the southwestern town Protection set an example by being the first in the U.S. to be fully inoculated against polio. Now locals are divided on the safety of COVID-19 vaccines.
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For the first time in 37 years Budweiser will not directly advertise its beer during the game. Other famous brands are also taking a pass.
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President Biden pledged to reopen most of the nation's K-12 schools during his first 100 days. When asked if that goal was "too optimistic," Cardona said, "No, I think it's strong leadership."
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Press secretary Jen Psaki said it's important that "our money ... reflect the history and diversity of our country." The effort to redesign the $20 bill foundered during the Trump administration.
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Protesters took to the streets of Tacoma, Wash., after several people were struck and at least two were injured. The officer was placed on paid administrative leave.
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People who are deaf or hard of hearing can now view an American Sign Language interpretation of the press briefings, White House press secretary Jen Psaki announced on Monday.
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After the union vote, the district said it had pushed back the return of K-8 teachers and staff until Wednesday to "ensure we reach a resolution without a disruption to student learning."
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Federal aid ends after 90 days, when refugees are expected to be self-sufficient. With the coronavirus on top of Trump administration cuts to the refugee program, the challenges are overwhelming.
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Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts will not take on the role for the trial that begins the week of Feb. 8, a source says. A chief justice presides only when a sitting president is on trial.
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King began his career on radio in the '50s and went on to host Larry King Live on CNN, which ran for 25 years and taped over 6,000 shows. He died Jan. 23. Originally broadcast in 1982.
State health officials are breathing a sigh of relief. But they are also cautious: More than 40 million Californians live in counties where COVID-19 risk is deemed "widespread."
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In a new round of tests, the drug company wants to see if booster doses of its vaccine will ramp up defenses against emerging strains of the coronavirus.
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