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Morning Update: The Teens Will Save Us

A climate change movement is sweeping Europe, a significant Supreme Court decision, we could've had The Rock. Your BuzzFeed News newsletter, February 8.

Posted on February 8, 2019, at 8:31 a.m. ET

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A huge climate change movement led by teenage girls is sweeping Europe. It’s coming to the US next.

Tens of thousands of high school–age students in Belgium, Germany, and Sweden have boycotted class and protested against climate change.

The rolling marches are substantial — in the latest mass climate strikes, large crowds took to the streets in The Hague on Thursday, in the biggest such protest in the Netherlands so far. Meanwhile, across the border in Belgium, the teens leading the climate strike said 12,000 people were on the streets in Leuven, the country’s eighth-largest city.

The protests are injecting a new urgency into the climate change conversation, and calling attention to a lack of action by governments. They are also a sign of the new political power of young women, especially in Europe.

US organizers are planning to participate in an international day of action on March 15.

Yves Herman / Reuters


The Supreme Court has put a Louisiana abortion law on hold for now

The background here: in 2014, Louisiana introduced a law requiring physicians who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. The law was immediately challenged by doctors and clinics who argued that it would “cripple abortion access in the state.”

What just happened? The Supreme Court hasn’t yet ruled on the constitutionality of the law, but yesterday the court granted a stay, meaning the law will be put on hold while the case moves forward.

Why is this important? The decision represents the first major ruling related to abortion since President Donald Trump began changing the faces on the Supreme Court. Two Trump nominees, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, have joined the high court in the past two years.

SNAPSHOTS

Google is pulling websites from searches at Russia’s request. The search giant's decision is the latest example of US tech giants working to stay on foreign countries' good sides.

Update your iPhone ASAP — there’s now a fix for the group FaceTime bug. Remember the security flaw that gave callers access to the call recipient's microphone and front-facing camera? Apple’s new iOS update fixes that. Get on it.

Cindy McCain has apologized after falsely accusing a woman at an airport of child trafficking. “It looked odd, a woman of a different ethnicity of the child, this little toddler she had,” McCain had recounted to a radio station. She then said she alerted the police, and “by god, the woman was trafficking that kid.” Phoenix police refuted McCain’s story.

Michelle Rodriguez defended Liam Neeson by saying “his tongue was so far down Viola Davis’s throat. You can’t call him racist.” Rodriguez was referring to a kiss in Widows, a film she starred in with Neeson and Davis.

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson says he, not Kevin Hart, was the first choice to host the Oscars. The star of nearly everything and human thirst machine said he turned down the gig due to scheduling. What can I say except the dream’s dead.

How a Canadian Yellow Vest site used fake accounts marketing savvy to monetize outrage

We’ve teamed up with the Toronto Star to investigate the ways in which political parties, third-party pressure groups, foreign powers, and individuals are influencing Canada’s political debate ahead of this year’s election.

Our first story from this partnership is about the creator of YellowVestGroup.com. Craig Collins capitalized on Canada’s anti-carbon tax Yellow Vest movement’s social media presence.

On Facebook, Collins shared anti-Muslim memes along with images of carbon tax protests in Canada. As he attracted followers, he funneled them to his website to earn ad revenue, and to an online store where they could buy products with Yellow Vest slogans.

He published a story on his website that inaccurately connected a moratorium on new work camps outside Fort McMurray to plans for a new mosque. The story got thousands of shares.

Facebook has removed Collins’ pages, citing its policy against “misrepresentation.” However, Collins is just the beginning of understanding how Canada’s upcoming election will be affected by forces it has never seen before.

Some weekend longreads for you to relax with

Why Are Bohemian Rhapsody And Green Book Still Oscar Front Runners? Hollywood appears to be closing ranks around two controversial movies (and their creators) that don't really deserve to be defended. A great essay from Alison Willmore: “The strangest thing about Hollywood's seeming embrace of a separating-the-art-from-the-artist approach this Oscar cycle is that it's been for the sake of such shitty art.”

The Bisexual Is The Queer Woman Drama Of My Dreams. Yes, we’re all waiting for the return of The L Word, but as Shannon Keating writes, we should be watching Hulu’s The Bisexual instead. From her piece: “What’s so beautiful and refreshing about The Bisexual is that [creator lead actor Desiree] Akhavan doesn’t shy away from tough topics like the different ways queer people can hurt each other — the ways in which we can crap on others’ identities because we’re so used to being crapped on ourselves.”

There’s Nothing Funny About What’s Happening To 21 Savage. When the news broke that ICE officials had detained She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, better known as the rapper 21 Savage, there were a lot of jokes. Dami Obaro writes that there is no humor to be found here: “Rather than ridicule him, 21 Savage's plight should make us more aware that immigration is also a black issue, and that a core part of any immigration reform must also include reform of our criminal system”

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