What's Going On Around The World Today?
NASA has discovered seven planets that may contain liquid water, three of which are “firmly located” in the habitable zone. President Donald Trump has rolled back Obama-era guidelines aimed at protecting transgender students in public schools. And Snapchat is pissing off its neighbors.
HERE ARE THE TOP STORIES
Seven Earth-sized planets with the potential to contain liquid water have been discovered orbiting a dwarf star.
The star, named Trappist-1, is about about 235 trillion miles from Earth — that’s a lot closer than it seems — and is being heralded as a major step forward in the search for alien life. The planets are so close to each other that someone standing on the surface of one of them could gaze up and possibly see geological features or clouds of neighboring worlds, which would at times appear larger than the moon in our own sky.
People were excited about the discovery, but mostly for the opportunity to get off Earth.
The Trump administration is rolling back an Obama-era guideline aimed at protecting transgender students in public schools.
Originally issued last May, the Obama policy said that a school “must not treat a transgender student differently from the way it treats other students of the same gender identity.” The Department of Justice and Department of Education told public schools that officials “have decided to withdraw and rescind the … guidance documents in order to further and more completely consider the legal issues involved.” But several state officials are wasting no time and said they would keep enforcing bans against transgender discrimination.
The Department of Homeland Security wants to send immigrants caught at the southern US border back to Mexico even if they’re not from the country. A memo published Tuesday that gave federal authorities direction on how to implement President Trump’s executive orders on immigration said agents could return a migrant “arriving on land to the foreign territory contiguous to the United States … pending a removal proceeding.”
Lt. General H.R. McMaster is facing huge challenges in his new role as Trump’s national security adviser.
And Vice President Mike Pence visited Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery in St. Louis after the historic Jewish cemetery was vandalized over the weekend.
WE’RE KEEPING AN EYE ON
At least 10 people were arrested at the Dakota Access pipeline encampment after an afternoon deadline to evacuate came and went.
Hundreds of demonstrators were told to leave the area by 2 p.m. CT or face arrest. As the deadline approached, some protesters were seen leaving the area and a handful of wooden structures used by the demonstrators were set on fire. A spokesperson for the local county sheriff’s department told BuzzFeed News that 25 to 50 people would be allowed to remain at the camp overnight in hopes they would leave peacefully.
QUICK THINGS TO KNOW
The fight against ISIS: Iraqi security forces have launched an attack on Mosul airport, as part of the government’s offensive to drive ISIS from the western half of the city.
In science: Pregnant women with herpes may be more likely to have autistic kids, a new study shows.
Tech updates: Snapchat’s growth is pissing off its neighbors who say the pre-IPO company is turning its Venice Beach, California, home into a sanitized, corporate campus. Facebook wants to start streaming Major League Baseball games. And the social media network is trying to smooth over its relationship with the media.
Starbucks: Chatter about the company turned negative after its promise to hire refugees.
#Peggygate: Furniture store West Elm is offering full refunds for a notoriously disintegrating couch days after pulling it from its website.
Brit Awards: Katy Perry gave an incredible performance at last night’s award ceremony and she may have thrown some shade at Trump. Here are all the celebrities who attended the Brit Awards and 12 things they looked like. And the show ~wasn’t hacked~ during the 1975’s performance.
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