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Biden blasts ‘un-American’ voting limits; Texas Dems act
7/21/2021 6:48:18 PM

PHILADELPHIA—President Joe Biden declared preserving voting rights an urgent national “test of our time” on Tuesday but offered few concrete proposals to meet it. Texas Democrats took their own dramatic action to stymie Republican efforts to tighten ballot restrictions in their state. Biden, who has proclaimed protecting ballot access the central cause of his presidency, has faced sharp criticism from allies for not doing more, though political headwinds and stubborn Senate math have limited his ability to act. Despite his ringing words Tuesday, he avoided any mention of...

Millennial Money: Changing the face of the cannabis industry
7/21/2021 6:38:20 PM

By Sean Piles   Cannabis businesses have transformed from clandestine ventures to glossy lifestyle brands in a matter of years, thanks to an evolving regulatory and business landscape. The majority of states now have some form of legalized cannabis, whether for medical or recreational use. The 2021 U.S. cannabis market is valued at $33 billion , according to an analysis by market research firm Grand View Research. That number is forecast to balloon to $84 billion by 2028. These trends indicate a fertile environment for seeding a new cannabis venture. But while the cannabis...

Olympic athletes test positive in Tokyo days before Games
7/21/2021 6:34:12 PM

By Graham Dunbar   TOKYO (AP)—A third athlete at the Olympic Village in Tokyo has tested positive for COVID-19, with the Czech Republic team reporting the case Monday of a beach volleyball player who could miss his first game. Czech beach volleyball player Ondrej Perušic could miss his opening game on Monday after a PCR test confirmed his infection. Perušic and his playing partner are due to the begin their Olympic program against a team from Latvia. Czech team leader Martin Doktor said in a statement they would ask to postpone the game until the infected...

The Latest: Fully vaccinated U.S. politicians test positive
7/21/2021 6:29:58 PM

ST PETERSBURG, Fla.—U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan said Monday he has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus even though he was fully vaccinated against the disease. The Republican congressman’s announcement came as Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said a “seasonal pattern” affecting mainly Sun Belt states is largely to blame for a recent spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in Florida. DeSantis, a Republican who opposes virus-related mandates, nonetheless said it’s important for people to get vaccinated. Buchanan, who represents a Sarasota-based district,...

Pulitzer Prize-Winning photographer Marcio Jose Sanchez finds inspiration in Lynwood upbringing
7/14/2021 2:50:57 PM

LYNWOOD— Long before photographer Marcio Jose Sanchez made history last month as the first native of Honduras to win a Pulitzer Prize, he had a deep history with Lynwood where he discovered a passion that guided him to the ultimate career achievement. Sanchez, who graduated from Lynwood High School in 1988, still remembers the inspiration of LHS educators who encouraged him to pick up a camera that would ultimately change his life. Sanchez is a member of a 10- person group of Associated Press photographers who were awarded the Pulitzer Prize in June for Breaking News Photography...

Poor communities suffer more from extreme heat in cities, UCSD study finds
7/14/2021 2:43:02 PM

LOS ANGELES—Low-income neighborhoods with higher Black, Hispanic and Asian populations experience significantly more urban heat than wealthier and predominantly white neighborhoods in the Southland and within a vast majority of populous U.S. counties, according to a UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy study released Tuesday. The researchers, whose findings are published in the journal Earth’s Future, analyzed remotely sensed land surface temperature measurements of 1,056 U.S. counties which have 10 or more census districts. The analysis revealed that for 71% of...

African American spelling bee champ makes history with flair
7/14/2021 2:38:24 PM

By Ben Nuckols   LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP)—Zaila Avant-garde understood the significance of what she was doing as she stood on the Scripps National Spelling Bee stage, peppering pronouncer Jacques Bailly with questions about Greek and Latin roots. Zaila knew she would be the first African American winner of the bee. She knew Black kids around the country were watching Thursday night’s ESPN2 telecast, waiting to be inspired and hoping to follow in the footsteps of someone who looked like them. She even thought of MacNolia Cox, who in 1936 became the first Black...

Biden to convene session on rising gun violence Monday
7/14/2021 2:17:36 PM

WASHINGTON (AP)—Facing a nationwide increase in violent crime—particularly involving firearms—President Joe Biden will meet Monday with law enforcement, local elected officials and advocates to discuss his efforts to address gun crimes. The White House says Biden will highlight his administration’s push to increase funding for local law enforcement to improve community policing practices through the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill he signed into law earlier this year. Some states and local governments are also using funding from that so-called American Rescue...

Paris police detain rapper Lil Baby, frisk NBA star Harden
7/14/2021 2:10:21 PM

PARIS (AP)—American rapper Lil Baby was detained in Paris on Thursday for allegedly transporting drugs, according to the city prosecutor's office. NBA star James Harden was also stopped but not detained, the prosecutor's office said. Images shared on social networks showed the Brooklyn Nets star briefly frisked in the incident on one of the French capital's most elite avenues. The prosecutor's office said one other person was also detained, without releasing the identity. An investigation is under way. Harden and Lil Baby, whose real name is Dominique Jones,...

Paul Verhoeven blesses Cannes with lesbian nun drama
7/14/2021 1:12:00 PM

By Jake Coyle   CANNES, France (AP)—The veteran provocateur Paul Verhoeven premiered his lesbian nun drama “Benedetta” at the Cannes Film Festival with a solemn vow to resurrect sexuality in movies. “Benedetta” predictably stirred the French Riviera festival over the weekend. In it, the Belgian actor Virginie Efira stars as Benedetta Carlini, a 17th-century French nun who communicates directly with Jesus and who falls in love with a farm girl saved by the convent (Daphne Patakia). An entertaining riot of eroticism, violence, Catholicism and plague,...