What's Going On Around The World Today?
A chemical classified as a weapon of mass destruction killed the half brother of North Korea’s leader. Uber CEO Travis Kalanick joined more than 100 female engineers to discuss explosive allegations of sexual harassment and sexism leveled against the company. And how Barry Jenkins made magic with Moonlight.
HERE ARE THE TOP STORIES
The substance used to assassinate the half brother of North Korea’s leader has been identified as VX nerve agent.
The chemical, listed by the United Nations as a weapon of mass destruction, is odorless, tasteless, and extremely toxic. North Korea is widely believed to have one of the world’s largest stockpiles of chemical weapons, something the reclusive nation has denied in the past.
Kim Jong Nam, 46, who was known for his criticism of North Korea’s regime, was killed on Feb. 13 at Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
Meanwhile, in the White House...
The White House defended the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw Obama-era guidance meant to protect transgender students. “It’s a states’ rights issue,” press secretary Sean Spicer repeatedly said at the daily press briefing. “That’s entirely what he believes, that if a state wants to pass a law or rule or an organization wants to do something in compliance with the state law, that’s their right. It shouldn’t be the federal government getting in the way of this.”
On ~legalized~ marijuana: Spicer said “there should be greater enforcement” of federal laws prohibiting the recreational use of marijuana, the administration's first comments on the issue.
Then there’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions: On Thursday he reversed an Obama-era directive aimed at ending the use of private, for-profit prisons by federal government — a boon to the private prison industry.
WE’RE KEEPING AN EYE ON
Issues of sexism and sexual harassment at Uber.
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick joined a group of more than 100 female engineers on Thursday to discuss the explosive allegations of sexual harassment and sexism recently leveled against the ride-hailing company. The engineers grilled Kalanick on what they say is a systemic problem at Uber and urged him to begin “listening to your own people,” according to an audio recording obtained by BuzzFeed News.
QUICK THINGS TO KNOW
US news: A Kansas man allegedly shot three people after yelling “get out of my country.” He thought two of them were Middle Eastern, but they weren’t. And former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who survived being shot in the head, told Congress to have courage and “face your constituents.”
Amazon is refusing to give law enforcement Amazon Echo recordings and responses that may help police solve a murder case, saying the recordings are protected by the First Amendment.
The French election explained through Haribo candy is actually kind of perfect.
Media matters: CNN is considering skipping the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, which shouldn’t come as a shock after Trump repeatedly slammed the cable network for being “fake news.”
Pineapple on pizza: Canada apparently invented Hawaiian pizza and is incredibly proud of it.
Doctor’s orders: Beyoncé, who is pregnant with twins, has canceled her performance at this year’s Coachella. But she plans to headline the festival again in 2018.
Muslims Shouldn’t Have To Be “Good” To Be Granted Human Rights: “My mother would always remind me, ‘Sara, when people see you in hijab, you are representing Islam.’ And whether I liked it or not, she was right.”
In Get Out, Racism Is The Horror Story Black People Try To Survive: Get Out and the Purge franchise finally make black men the protagonists of horror films and center their real-life terror of living in suburban America.
How Barry Jenkins Made Magic With Moonlight: “There was a point when I thought I couldn’t make another film, and now look at the film we made.”
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