The Supreme Court is back in session, and they have already dropped some bombshells on the American people.
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SCOTUS reconvened on Oct. 3 to start their new session, which will surely be full of 4-4 split decisions. That’s mainly because the Republican-controlled Congress has decided to block any nomination for the position made by President Obama. It’s a tricky situation, since a 4-4 split leaves cases unresolved, effectively upholding the lower court’s decision. Those impacted by potential decisions are left in limbo.
SCOTUS did not offer an explanation as to why they are refusing to rehear the arguments for and against a program that would offer protection to millions of undocumented immigrants in the U.S. who are currently living in the shadows. The Obama administration petitioned the court for a second case for the immigration policies, but the denial was swift and unwavering.
“We’ve seen the success of the former program, and many people being able to, not just get work permits, but also start businesses, buy homes, really get their life settled,” Democratic U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego told ABC15.
Puerto Rican’s are no stranger to referendums. Since 1967, they’ve had five chances to make their opinions known on U.S. statehood and each and every time, their voice hasn’t been listened to. Congress has failed to take up the issue after each referendum and local leaders are often guilty of using the referendum simply to drudge up support for their candidates.
But this upcoming referendum is different in that it comes at a crossroads for Puerto Rican politics. The island has been plagued by natural disasters, political scandals, and unprecedented hate crimes. Even Bad Bunny is letting his thoughts out on the referendum and many others have lots to say on the issue.
For the first time in the island’s history, the referendum will ask a single question: Should Puerto Rico be immediately admitted as a U.S. state?
On Saturday, Puerto Rico’s pro-statehood Republican governor, Wanda Vázquez, announced yet another vote on the question (the sixth since 1967 and the third since 2012). It’s a move that comes amid growing frustration with the island’s territorial government and its relationship with the mainland.
However, it’s a question that also outraged the island’s independence supporters and members of the main opposition Popular Democratic Party – which supports the status quo.
But it’s a gamble that members of the governor’s pro-statehood party are confident will pay off given that Puerto Rico has struggled to obtain federal funds for hurricanes Irma and Maria, a string of recent strong earthquakes and the coronavirus pandemic amid growing complaints that the island does not receive fair and equal treatment.
“Our people will have the opportunity once and for all to define our future,” Vázquez said. “It’s never too late to be treated as equals.”
The upcoming referendum is just the recent in a long line of previously failed ones.
In the past, voters have been asked more than one question and presented with various options, including independence or continuing with the current territorial status – but none of them have ever been as direct as the upcoming one scheduled for the November 3 general election.
However, many on the island see the referendum as little more than a political move by the governor’s New Progressive Party to get voters out on Nov 3 – to boost her party’s candidates.
The New Progressive Party has been rattled with scandal after scandal and many are ready for change.
The past few years have not been good for the party – or the island for that matter. A string of devastating hurricanes, a severe debt crisis, ongoing corruption scandals that even forced a pro-statehood governor to resign, earthquakes, and now a global pandemic – have all led to challenging times in Puerto Rico. To some observers, the idea seems to be: Let’s dangle the illusion of a yes or no statehood referendum (nonbinding) that is already dead on arrival?
Many also feel that Gov. Vasquez is not truly authorized to make such a decision since she was never actually elected to the office. Instead, she became governor after Ricardo Rosselló was forced to resign following massive protests.
Meanwhile, the Republican government on the island doesn’t even have the support of the Republican-led federal government. The Trump administration’s blunt response was basically, “The first priority for all Puerto Rico leaders should be getting their financial house in order.”
Statehood would award Puerto Rico two senators and five representatives, but it’s unlikely a Republican-controlled Congress would acknowledge the referendum because Puerto Rico tends to favor Democrats.
Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens but cannot vote in U.S. presidential elections. And while the island is exempt from the U.S. federal income tax, it still pays Social Security and Medicare and local taxes and receives less federal funding than U.S. states. Many believe the island’s territorial status has contributed to its struggle to recover from the hurricanes and earthquakes, as well as worsened its economic crisis, largely caused by decades of heavy borrowing and the elimination of federal tax incentives.
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The world is still grappling with COVID-19. Mainly, health experts around the globe are still experimenting with new ways to cure people sick of the coronavirus. President Donald Trump has often criticized health experts and has tried contradicting them during press conferences. The latest claim from President Trump has everyone very confused and concerned about the well-being of his supporters.
President Donald Trump recently floated the idea of experimenting with injecting disinfectants to fight COVID-19.
“And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute, one minute,” President Trump suggested during a press conference. “And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning cause you see it gets in the lungs and does a tremendous number so it would be interesting to check it.”
The memes immediately started flowing because this is just too crazy to be real life.
The number of U.S. infections from COVID-19 has topped 800,000 and deaths are over 50,000. There is still no real national response in place for handling the virus as President Trump has been pressuring states to reopen their economies against the advice of health experts.
Latinos have come through with the Fabuloso jokes because we have to keep our cures culturally relevant.
But, seriously, don’t go injecting disinfectant if you think you have COVID-19. President Trump has been throwing out suggestions for cures that have consistently been discredited by health experts around the world. Namely, President Trump has been pushing for more hospitals and doctors so start experimenting with hydroxychloroquine. Yet, a recent study disproved the president’s claims and he has quietly stopped talking about it.
The bizarre claim reminded people of the classic “Heathers” death scene.
If you haven’t seen “Heathers,” it is a great movie to watch while in lockdown. Winona Rider’s character goes on an accidental killing spree with her high school boyfriend. One of the first deaths is the main Heather who is given drain cleaner in secret killing her.
Disinfectant companies felt the claim was so outrageous from the president of the United States that they released statements.
“As a global leader in health and hygiene products, we must be clear that under no circumstance should our disinfectant products be administered into the human body (through injection, ingestion or any other route),” a spokesperson for Reckitt Benckiser, the United Kingdom-based owner of Lysol, said in a statement to NBC News. “As with all products, our disinfectant and hygiene products should only be used as intended and in line with usage guidelines. Please read the label and safety information.”
President Trump’s press conference was less to the press and more to Dr. Deborah Birx.
Dr. Birx was off-camera as President Trump suggested ways to cure people with COVID-19. One thing the Republican president suggested was using lights to kill the virus. While using UV light to kill the virus is something that is being researched, it is being used to disinfect contaminated surfaces. President Trump wants Dr. Birx to see if there is a way to introduce the light under the skin as a cure.
The memes just keep flowing with people making fun of President Trump suggesting disinfectants and lights as cures.
People fear that President Trump’s suggestion of injecting disinfectants could only exacerbate the COVID-19 health crisis. The fear is that people trying the disinfectant suggestion would only further overwhelm healthcare workers and already burdened hospitals.
Please, if you ever have questions about health issues, contact your doctor and a healthcare professional.
Never listen to advice about medicine from people who are not in the medical field. It is important to keep yourself aware and safe during these times. Stay safe. Stay home. Stay healthy. We are all in this together.