ICYMI: Frustration With "Thoughts And Prayers" After Texas Shooting
Gun violence stuns the country again (and again, and again); women gear up to rock the vote; and a couple of legends do some legendary stuff—it's all happening this week.
Another week, another fresh cycle of shocking, horrific, but occasionally inspiring news. Here's a quick look at the biggest moments of last week, and what to keep an eye on this week:
The Texas shooting makes this the deadliest year for mass shootings in modern American history; President Trump says it's "not a guns situation."
Just over a month after the deadliest mass shooting in American history took the lives of 58 concertgoers in Las Vegas, Nevada, 26-year-old Devin Patrick Kelley opened fire on a church in the rural town of Sutherland Springs on Sunday. 26 died and at least 20 more were wounded according to the LA Times. The ages of the victims reportedly range from 5 to 72 years old.
The news has been met with outrage and exhaustion over the lack of action from leadership, with swaths of the population leveling their anger at the standard-issue "thoughts and prayers" platitudes from the GOP.
Reports out of Texas are devastating. The people of Sutherland Springs need our prayers right now.— Paul Ryan (@SpeakerRyan) November 5, 2017
Thoughts & prayers are not enough, GOP. We must end this violence. We must stop these tragedies. People are dying while you wait.— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) November 5, 2017
May God also grant all of us the wisdom to ask what concrete steps we can take to reduce the violence and weaponry in our midst.— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) November 6, 2017
Less than 24 hours after the incident, Paul Ryan has tweeted four times about tax reform and zero times about the issue of reducing gun violence, for those keeping track at home.
As for President Trump, he issued a statement from Japan, where he is on a 13-day trip through Asia. He swiftly extinguished any hope that the most recent mass shooting might prompt an closer look at gun legislation:
"This isn't a guns situation. This is a mental health problem at the highest level. It's a very, very sad event."
If you count yourself among those utterly fed up with the lack of leadership in times like these: General and special elections are being held across the nation tomorrow, November 7.
And a record number of women are running for office according to CNN, which is largely attributed to the election of President Trump. Figures reported by political resource and training organizations like Emily's List, She Should Run, and Emerge America, inquiries and applications have skyrocketed since Trump was elected. Emily's List, for example, has reported that over 20,000 women have reached out since the 2016 election.
And vote, of course. Local elections create the groundswell for national change, and it's a temperature check for the all-important midterms in 2018. Find your polling place and all relevant info here.
And speaking of how to #resist: A Twitter employee deleted Donald Trump's account on his last day of work.
For a brief 11 minutes last week, all was right with the world. On Thursday, November 2, just before 4 p.m., if you tried to find out what fresh nonsense was leaking out of the @realdonaldtrump's Twitter feed, you would've seen the following message: "Sorry, that page doesn't exist!"
The employee has not been identified, though one former staffer told The Verge that he or she is being referred to on back channels as "The Legend."
In other legendary news: For the first time in 40 years, an American woman won the New York City Marathon.
36-year-old Shalane Flanagan beat out Mary Keitany, a 35-year-old Kenyan athlete who had won the New York City Marathon the three previous years.
It was a much-needed moment of levity after a the deadliest terror attack in New York since 911 occurred five days before. Flanagan, an Olympian and fixture of the marathon circuit, also ran the 2013 Boston Marathon where terrorists killed three people.
A portrait of a brutally messed-up immigration debate
Rosa Maria Hernandez is 10 years old and has cerebral palsy. But she was being held 150 miles from her family, pulled out of the hospital last week by border patrol.
Hernandez, who is undocumented and has been living in the US since she was three months old, was pulled over at a checkpoint while traveling to gallbladder surgery via ambulance. The officers followed her to the hospital and simply waited.
After gallbladder surgery, Hernandez—who has the cognitive development of a 6-year-old—was not released to her family's care as her doctor's suggested, but immediately pulled into federal custody.
Disability rights, legal advocacy, and reproductive rights activists joined in with the general public to denounce her treatment with the hashtag #FreeRosa. Now the ACLU has sued the administration to get her back to her family.
Her mom pleaded to reporters, "It’s painful for me to know that my daughter is there and I can’t help her." And on Friday, November 3, after 10 days in custody, she was finally released. Unfortunately, her deportation case is still pending.
All of which is to say it's been quite the week. Hang in there, bbs.
Words: Eva Grant/Deena Drewis