D. All of the above.
“Collectively, we in law enforcement hurt because in Uvalde, we failed the children. We failed the teachers. We failed the families….”
Acevedo said “police had to assume that there were a lot of wounded, innocent children inside those classrooms. Their duty was to gain access to those classrooms at all costs, neutralize the threat and take those children out of that classroom… By not going in, the police in Uvalde absolutely made the wrong call.”
“If you can’t go in through one door, find another one. If you can’t go in through the door, go through a window. And if you can’t go through the window, crash through the drywall.”
But Acevedo added, “We also need to look at the failures of leadership by our elected officials — failures that created the circumstances that required a police response in the first place. How was it that a troubled kid with homicidal thoughts was able to walk into a gun store right after his 18th birthday to buy assault rifles and high-capacity magazines with hundreds of rounds?”
When news breaks of another mass shooting, a feeling of hopelessness can set in. Yet Philip Alpers, founding director of GunPolicy.org, pointed out that “three nations — Australia, the United Kingdom and New Zealand — tightened gun controls after mass shootings to safeguard future generations.”
“That said, it is futile to suggest the US could destroy rapid-fire semiautomatic firearms in the way Australia did. To match the one-third of civilian guns sent to smelters in the years since Australia’s gun law reform, Americans would have to destroy as many as 130 million firearms.”
Rinad S. Beidas was a 17-year-old high school senior in 1999 when two Columbine High School students killed 13 people in their school before dying by suicide. People called it an “anomaly,” but these kinds of events are now all too familiar. “Now that I’m a 40-year-old child psychologist doing firearm safety research and a mother to two elementary school students, I have trouble reassuring my kids when they ask me, ‘Mom, are we safe? Will someone come shoot us at school?'”
The food war
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war against Ukraine has resulted in sharply higher fuel prices, as nations seek to reduce their dependence on oil and natural gas from Russia. But an even more alarming prospect is a food shortage resulting from Russia’s blockade of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports, normally a major source of grain exports.
Tisdall noted that “António Guterres, the UN secretary general, said Ukraine-related shortages could help ‘tip tens of millions of people over the edge into food insecurity.’ The result could be ‘malnutrition, mass hunger and famine in a crisis that could last for years’ — and increase the chances of a global recession.”
“To prevent such a catastrophe, world powers should consider ways to break Russia’s blockade of Ukrainian ports. Putin is attempting to weaponize starvation, cynically suggesting he would help ease global hunger if the West lifts sanctions against Russia. The sanctions, it’s worth remembering, were triggered by Russian aggression. Europe should also work to boost Ukrainian exports by rail, even if that would not make up for seaborne routes.”
Putin’s two sides
In more than two decades of covering Putin, Jill Dougherty saw two sides to the Russian leader. “In the early days of his presidency, he said all the right things about democracy and Western-style economic reform,” Dougherty recalled. “Yet, within a year of being elected President, he had begun his crackdown on the media. Now, there are virtually no independent media left in Russia.”
President Joe Biden made a strong appeal for congressional action on gun safety Thursday, but few people expect he can make headway in the face of Republican opposition. The speech came as the administration seemed largely powerless to quickly tamp down inflation.
“By the time Carter was running for reelection, it seemed like he was struggling to keep up with events — rather than effectively containing them. Like Biden, Carter faced a series of major crises: economic stagflation; an energy crisis that resulted in high gas prices and low supplies; the Iran hostage crisis; and a Soviet invasion of Afghanistan that put the Persian Gulf region at risk.” Carter lost his bid for re-election to Ronald Reagan.
Johnny Depp and Amber Heard were each found liable for defamation in their lawsuits, with the jury awarding Depp more in damages. “The outcome of this trial affects far more than Depp and Heard, because it epitomizes just how much our society has regressed since the peak of the #MeToo movement,” wrote Kara Alaimo.
Sheryl Sandberg’s exit
A decade ago, Sheryl Sandberg seemed to go from strength to strength. As Nicole Hemmer wrote, “Facebook had just gone public, making Sandberg a billionaire. She had played a major role in creating that wealth.”
“While she reveled in the company’s success, it was not the only project she cared about. She had recently begun to speak about the challenges women faced in the corporate world, and had landed on a solution: Women needed to seize more leadership opportunities and advocate more forcefully for themselves, an act she called ‘leaning in.'”
Pride month 2022
This year’s Pride month, 53 years after the Stonewall uprising, has a different, more political feel, Allison Hope wrote.
“The clarion call to conjure the ferocious spirit of the very first Pride March more than 50 years ago is stronger than ever. Back then, LGBTQ+ people were demanding to be seen, to be rendered visible after generations, centuries, of being forced out of view; or much worse, prosecuted, marginalized or beaten and killed simply for who they loved or how they presented.”
January 6 prime time
“Top Gun: Maverick” is the movie box office leader, but the biggest show of the summer could be a reality-based one, wrote Dean Obeidallah: The House select committee hearings on the January 6, 2021, Capitol riot begin Thursday evening in prime time.
“Will there be surprise appearances — maybe a cameo from someone such as former Vice President Mike Pence? And how will Donald Trump respond to allegations about his potential role in the drama, including reports this past week that he allegedly welcomed chants from January 6 protesters of ‘hang Mike Pence’?”
Former President Trump’s discredited election fraud narrative took another hit last month when he proved unable to sink Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp’s re-election bid in the state’s GOP primary. “Despite this unprecedented effort by the former president and his allies against a sitting office holder from his own party, Kemp rolled to a clear victory Tuesday and now turns his attention to the fall election in a repeat contest against (Stacey) Abrams, whom he narrowly defeated in 2018,” wrote Edward Lindsey, a Georgia Republican.
After Roe v. Wade
If the Supreme Court overturns the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision which enabled abortion rights, the consequences will be sweeping, wrote Holly Thomas. In the Roe ruling, the court “rejected the concept of fetal personhood, recognizing that fetuses have never been given full legal rights under the Constitution.”
Overturning Roe would trigger laws in some states that “define the start of pregnancy as the moment of fertilization, thereby encompassing not only fetuses but also embryos and even fertilized eggs,” Thomas noted. “This degree of protection, persistently advocated for by the personhood movement, creates a legal quagmire with potentially terrifying ramifications.”
Elon Musk’s order
Elon Musk is never out of the headlines for long these days. This week, he made news for threatening to fire Tesla employees who don’t work in the office at least 40 hours a week.
Writing for CNN Business Perspectives, Kara Alaimo argued, “In announcing this draconian policy that disregards the needs, desires and realities of many American workers, Musk probably thinks he’s going to extract more and better work out of his staff. He’s sadly mistaken. The policy is likely to have the exact opposite effect, driving talent and innovation out of his electric vehicle company…”
“Top Gun: Maverick” is “two hours of sheer, visceral fun on the big screen, which feels very retro. In the best possible way,” wrote Sara Stewart. It’s also may be the best argument for the survival of movie theaters in the age of streaming.
Tom Cruise, Stewart observed, “is the one who reportedly insisted that this movie, shot back in 2019, not be released on a streaming platform. And damn, was he right. This glorious blockbuster demands to be seen on the biggest possible screen, and hold on to your popcorn, because the for-real aerial stunts must be experienced in high definition to be believed…”