Inside the courts where some immigrants plead guilty without knowing what’s happening
Imagine the deportation of 14 people taking less than 14 minutes. That’s what it’s like in courtrooms working under a process called Operation Streamline.
What is Operation Streamline? It’s a system launched under the Bush administration in 2005, designed to handle a spike in apprehensions of Mexican and Central American immigrants along the southern US border.
The program allows the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Justice, and federal courts to process people charged with unauthorized entry into the US at a breakneck pace.
Where is it in effect? At first, it applied only to certain parts of the Texas–Mexico border. Since then, Streamline courts have been expanded to the entirety of the Texas border, as well as Arizona and New Mexico.
Is it an unfair system? Judge Leslie Bowman described the outcome of the process this stunning way: “I am aware that a person could probably make it through the proceedings without a thorough understanding of their rights and the court proceedings.”
She wasn’t exaggerating. Defendants may be given interpreter headsets, but they are largely ceremonial: Many don’t speak English or enough Spanish to participate in the hearings.
What happens next? Immigration attorneys and activists worry that, even though President Donald Trump’s demands for an elimination of due process for undocumented immigrants may not come into effect, new policies similar to Operation Streamline will eventually be put in place to make it all but impossible for people fleeing violence and terror to gain asylum.
You should read John Stanton’s extraordinary reporting on Streamline courts.
Trump told the head of NATO “Germany is totally controlled by Russia”
President Trump is in Europe this week for the NATO summit. He used the breakfast on day one of the summit to launch a fresh attack on Germany’s defense spending and its reliance on Russian energy.
He told NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg that Germany is “totally controlled” by Russia because of its spending on Russian oil and gas.
Trump’s advisers seem to have had quite the reaction when he said this in the meeting, although later the White House press secretary said their expressions were actually in response to the breakfast options.
The president said he wants NATO members to increase their defense spending commitments to 4% of their GDP. Currently, the agreed-upon goal is 2% by the year 2024, but Trump wants that doubled. According to the Bulgarian president, Trump “just left after he announced that.”
Kylie Jenner is on track to be the youngest ever self-made billionaire. The 20-year-old makeup mogul is on the cover of Forbes magazine this month, which claims that she has amassed $900 million in three years from Kylie Cosmetics. Jenner owns 100% of the company, according to the magazine. Forbes says Kylie’s net worth will likely pass $1 billion within the next year. Some people are very salty about this.
Walmart just patented audio surveillance technology for listening in on employees. The technology would measure workers’ performance and could even listen to their conversations with customers at checkout. While there’s no guarantee that Walmart will ever build this technology, the patent shows the company is thinking about using tech not just to facilitate deliveries or make its warehouses more efficient, but also to manage its workforce, which is the largest in the United States.
The founder of Papa John’s has resigned after using the n-word in a conference call. The company announced John Schnatter’s resignation shortly after news broke that he used the word on a May conference call. The call was specifically about how to not seem racist — it was reportedly intended as a public relations training exercise for Schnatter after he faced backlash last year for saying NFL players who kneel during the national anthem were hurting pizza sales. “Colonel Sanders called blacks n-----s,” Schnatter said, according to Forbes, which censored the word in its story.
Your Twitter follower count will start to drop today. The company has announced it plans to stop counting locked Twitter accounts in a user's total number of followers. The move is part of Twitter’s efforts to weed out fraudulent and spammy accounts. According to Twitter, locked accounts are not necessarily automated bot or spam accounts — it locks accounts for a variety of reasons. In all cases, Twitter contacts the owner of the locked account with instructions on how to unlock their account.
It’s Croatia and France in the World Cup final. After a dramatic match that went into extra time, Croatia defeated England 2–1 to earn a spot in Sunday’s final. Having predicted France would win the tournament before it began, I’m feeling cautiously good about my prophet status.
It’s been a groundbreaking week for HIV research
The race to produce an HIV vaccine has seen few bright spots since the virus was globally recognized as a pandemic 37 years ago.
In other words, it’s an area that could use some good news, and finally we have some: Humanity’s making leaps with not one, but two scientific breakthroughs this week.
The first: A team of international researchers has shown one vaccine (known as Ad26) could be the most successful we've seen yet. To give you an idea of how successful, this is one of only four vaccines ever to make it to efficacy trials.
The next phase of the trial has been initiated in southern Africa to determine the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine in 2,600 women who are at risk of acquiring HIV.
The second: A different team of researchers have been able to understand the mechanisms of HIV in our bodies in greater detail than ever before.
As it turns out, HIV protects itself from our immune systems by hijacking molecules in our cells. The only other disease known to protect itself in the same way is the very incurable common cold.
Aerie now has models with visible disabilities and illnesses
The lingerie company quietly added new models to its product pages, and as news spread people’s responses have been really heartwarming.
People are touched because it's so rare to see women with these conditions in media — let alone ones looking sexy and confident in lingerie. Trust me, you’ll want to read the reactions.
The new models include a woman with Down syndrome, a woman who uses a wheelchair, a woman with vitiligo, and this woman who has an ostomy pouch: