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Incoming: A Horrific And Specifically American Ritual

A look at what a mass shooting does to a family, hundreds were arrested in an ICE operation, and a report on how climate change is already hurting the environment. This is your BuzzFeed News newsletter, Aug. 8.

Posted on August 8, 2019, at 7:32 a.m. ET

A Latino man and his nephew went to Walmart together to buy school supplies. Only one came home.

Rita Lozoya doesn't know why her nephew had to die. But she and his family know why 15-year-old Javier Amir Rodriguez did: because he's brown.

“[The El Paso gunman] was shooting like he was hunting,” Rodriguez’s cousin, Cesar Serrano, told BuzzFeed News. “He was looking for Latinos, for Mexicans. Although there is nothing but Latinos at that Walmart, so he could have walked in and emptied his clip, but he was choosing who he was killing.”

Reporter Brianna Sacks spent time with Rodriguez’s family as they endure the horrific and specifically American ritual, mourning their dead and trying to process being targeted in a mass shooting for who they are.

👉 Trump visited shooting victims, attacked Democrats while talking about unity, and released multiple posed photos and a campaign-style video while saying the trip wasn't a photo op

👉 Opinion: Our mass shooting culture makes me constantly worry when I'm in a public space

👉 El Paso protesters partly blame Trump's rhetoric on immigration for the mass shooting

👉 Cory Booker: White supremacy is fueled by a "dangerous tolerance"

👉 Here's how people reacted to Trump's visits to El Paso and Dayton

Brianna Sacks / BuzzFeed News

From left: Miranda Vega, Victoria Perches, and Sophia Balderrama said the shooting had shaken them into taking action. The three college students are becoming organizers for “El Paso Strong,” a call-to-action group to encourage young people, particularly in the Latinx community, to become more politically active and vote.

Families "are scared to death" after a massive ICE operation swept up hundreds of people

Some 680 suspected undocumented workers were arrested Wednesday after ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations agents swept through seven agricultural plants in Mississippi as part of a criminal investigation — one of the largest raids ever conducted by the agency.

Dianne, whose fiancé called her in a panic during the raid and was arrested, sped to the local school, where she witnessed other adults coming to pick up children whose parents had been arrested. Some parents, she said, weren’t able to retrieve kids because they hadn’t been listed as authorized guardians.

On her way out of the school, she saw one girl looking confused, not knowing where to go because her parents had been arrested, too.

“People are terrified," Luis Cartagena, a pastor in Morton, Mississippi, said. "They are scared to death."

Snapshots

A new report from the UN's body in charge of monitoring climate change details how global warming is already playing out on land to negative effect. It's magnifying heat waves and droughts, and contributing to desertification and declining crop yields — and worse impacts are yet to come if global warming continues unchecked, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s special Climate Change and Land report said.

Canadian police have discovered the bodies of two men they believe to be the teenage fugitives wanted for murdering three people in British Columbia last month. An autopsy will be performed, but police are "confident" they are the bodies of Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky. The teens were suspects in the deaths of Leonard Dyck, 64, Chynna Deese, 24, and Lucas Fowler, 23.

A YouTuber who recorded a prank video about her dog is now the subject of an investigation into possible animal abuse. Unedited footage showed Brooke Hout hitting the animal. "LAPD is aware of this incident. Animal Cruelty is looking into this, and there is an open investigation," a representative for the Los Angeles Police Department told BuzzFeed News.

More than 40% of Zillow's revenue last quarter came from flipping homes. The real estate search and advertising platform is buying thousands of properties, investing in minor repairs, and then selling them in 15 markets around the country, with plans to be in 26 markets by mid-2020.

A groundbreaking photograph of Beyoncé will enter the permanent collection of the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery. The shot was coordinated for Vogue by Tyler Mitchell, the first black photographer to shoot a cover for the magazine in its 126-year history and one of the youngest photographers to do so. He announced the news in a tweet.

Tyler Mitchell via Twitter

The Philippines was a test of Facebook's new approach to countering disinformation. Things got worse.

Three years after Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s 2016 campaign rode a wave of false stories, paid trolling, and the resulting Facebook engagement to victory, opposition candidates who once lambasted the president and his legions of digital disinformation agents have adopted some of the same tactics. The result is a political environment even more polluted by trolling, fake accounts, impostor news brands, and information operations, according to a new study.

And it's a warning sign for what could happen in the US in 2020.

A guy from Tinder wanted to send this woman a pic of his "Gundam," and it wasn't a euphemism

Elizabeth Howley via Twitter

When a guy Elizabeth Howley met on Tinder offered to send her a picture of his "Gundam," she thought exactly what you're thinking: She was sure she was about to get an unsolicited dick pic. BUT THEN!

So they met up. And reader, she went on to marry him. Treat yourself to this story of love and models of giant fighting robots.

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