Incoming: An Iconic Mom Shuffle

A landmark opioid crisis ruling, Epstein's donations to science, reward for helping with unsolved child gun deaths in St. Louis. Your BuzzFeed News newsletter, August 27.

Johnson & Johnson is the first drugmaker to be held responsible for the opioid crisis

Judge Thad Balkman ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $572 million towards ending Oklahoma’s opioid epidemic, marking the first time a pharmaceutical company was held responsible for the spike in addiction and overdoses caused by its drugs.

Balkman said the evidence showed the company's misleading marketing and promotion of opioids caused high rates of addiction and overdoses, and ordered the company to pay for prevention, treatment, and recovery services.

The lawsuit originally named other companies, including Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin. Before the trial, Purdue agreed to pay $270 million toward addiction research and legal fees, without admitting responsibility.

The judge pointed out there was no opioid epidemic in the mid-’90s — then Purdue successfully marketed OxyContin to patients with chronic pain, prompting Johnson & Johnson to relaunch its Duragesic fentanyl patch.

Judge Balkman found the company worked to convince doctors that patients seeking higher dosages weren't becoming addicted.

Johnson & Johnson said it will appeal the ruling.

The Sopranos actor Annabella Sciorra will testify she was raped by Harvey Weinstein, prosecutors say

Disgraced movie executive Weinstein pleaded not guilty to two new predatory sexual assault charges on Monday. A new grand jury indictment will allow an actor he allegedly assaulted in the early ’90s to testify about what prosecutors said is a pattern of sexually criminal behavior.

Sciorra, best known for her role in The Sopranos, will testify that Weinstein raped her inside her Manhattan apartment in 1993, prosecutors said.

In order to prove predatory sexual assault, prosecutors must present evidence that Weinstein committed felony sexual assault against at least two individuals.

Weinstein faces a slew of other charges, including two counts of predatory sexual assault and one count of first-degree rape.


Trump keeps blaming Obama for kicking Russia out of the G8, but Vladimir Putin got his own damn self kicked out. Once again, President Donald Trump floated the idea of bringing Russia back into the fold at the G7 Summit. This time, he blamed former president Barack Obama for Russia’s ouster. But that’s not what happened.

Kids and teens in St. Louis are getting shot so often that police are offering $100,000 to help solve cases. Since April, at least 12 children and teenagers in St. Louis have died as a result of gunfire in what has been one of the deadliest and most violent summers for youth in the city in years.

A violent altercation between a couple and a group of trans women at a bar is being investigated as a hate crime. A group of transgender women were forcibly removed from a Los Angeles bar after two other patrons yelled anti-trans slurs at them, and now police are investigating a possible hate crime after a video of the incident went viral.

Alysia Reiner from Orange Is The New Black said she completely broke down while filming an ICE detention scene. For this season, Reiner’s character Natalie "Fig" Figueroa plays the warden of an ICE detainment facility. Reiner described an emotional moment that caused her to break down on set.

Jeffrey Epstein’s links to scientists are even more extensive than we thought

It is well-reported that Jeffrey Epstein donated money to scientific research, but he gave more money to science after his conviction than previously acknowledged. The recipients include famous researchers, leading universities, an independent AI pioneer, and even a far-right YouTuber who took Epstein’s money to make videos on neuroscience.

An extensive review of Epstein’s donations, public acknowledgements of funding, and meetings that happened after his release from jail, shows that his links to top scientists continued after he was first convicted for sex crimes in 2008.

Epstein’s scientific friends, including Harvard mathematical biologist Martin Nowak and celebrity physicist Lawrence Krauss, introduced him to other leading scientists after his release from jail.

Some of the scientists say they’re sorry they took his money. Others didn’t comment. Read our extensive look into Epstein’s money in the science world.

29 things you missed at the VMAs

Yes, Taylor Swift performed an excellent set. Yes, Missy Elliott brought the house down. Yes, Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello almost kissed, bringing Sophie Turner to a near-frenzy. Here’s a recap of all the iconic moments you missed from the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards.

But let us, for a moment, focus on Gigi Hadid’s mom shuffle.