Compiled by Sarah Train
Jordan started the show with breaking news. Early this morning, Hurricane Sally made landfall near Gulf Shores, Alabama after over 24 hours of anticipatory rainfall. And heavy winds.
As a category 2 storm system, Sally touched down on land with winds of up to 105 miles per hour. While the storm could be worse in terms of its category, Sally’s slow speed of around 2 miles per hour is what makes it dangerous, threatening those in its path with record flooding.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey took to twitter warning residents of Alabama that, “We’re looking at record flooding, perhaps breaking historic levels, and with rising water comes a greater risk for loss of life and loss of property.”
At the peak of hurricane season the importance of preparedness is evident, as other strong storm systems like Hurricane Teddy and Tropical Storm Vicky brew in the atlantic.
Jordan Stevenson then continued on with some local news. Although the protests of the summer have come and gone, residents of the Athens community believe that the Black Lives Matter movement will continue to be active and grow locally this fall.
Athens Clarke-County District 2 Commissioner Mariah Parker shares her perspective on the future of the movement as she believes that participants follow certain important rhythms. She says these protests of large numbers of participants eventually “fall back, study and rest.”
And describes this process as a necessary cycle of protesting to keep the movement strong. Parker, along with Mokah Jasmine Johnson, co-founder of the Athens Anti-Discrimination moevement, still belive that there is more work to be done. Progress was made with the removal of the Confederate memorial downtown, says Johnson, but Parker said she hopes for the mayor to pass a budget that could help fund the creation of a community crisis response team.
Parker is also regularly active on social media. She frequently posts updates on Instagram concerning the movement and informs the community on the time and place of protests she’s organized.
Laura Lenz then reported on some potential changes ahead for the historic Stone Mountain. Stone Mountain park is under renewed scrutiny amid the racial justice protests this summer and a new group is proposing changes to Stone Mountain Park. Stone Mountain Action Coalition proposed ideas for widespread changes to the park’s displays and imagery at a meeting earlier this week, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
Coalition co-chair Meymoona Freeman said, “It’s time for transformation, it’s time for healing and it’s time for progress.”
A larger proposal includes the modification or removal of the Confederate carving on the mountain, which displays Confederate symbols Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and Jefferson Davis.
According to NPR, more changes include replacing their confederate flag display with the American flag, sharing the histories of Native Americans and African-Americans, and more geologic, ecologic and wildlife education at the park.
“We’re certainly going to consider some of the things they mentioned,” Stone Mountain Memorial Association Board Chairman Ray Smith III said. “But, some of what they presented [they] left out some parts of state law.”
Although the memorial association says that different changes are more likely, many are hopeful that it will lead to a broader conversation about racial discrimination in and around Stone Mountain Park.
“I hope we’ll see a more robust discussion about this particular issue in January and some legislative action,” Democratic State representative Matthew Wilson said.
Laura Lenz continued with some information regarding an increasing popularity in freelancing in the workforce. Many industries have moved online as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, forcing professionals to Zoom from their living rooms, but more and more individuals are freelancing.
According to a new study by Upwork, two million Americans have begun freelancing in the last 12 months, increasing the proportion of freelancers in the workforce to 36%.
Before the pandemic, many chose freelancing because of its flexibility. However, evidence now suggests that freelancing is a necessity for many because of the loss of millions of full-time positions.
Julia Pollack, a labor economist for the site ZipRecruiter, stated that the percent increases in permanent to temporary positions was “alarmingly big.”
According to NPR, the shift from full-time to contracted work is accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic. When the pandemic hit, the share of temporary job postings jumped from 24% to 34%. In industries like communications or marketing, these increases were even greater, with a four times increase in temporary job postings in the communications field.
Some experts state that we are transitioning towards less full-time positions and more independent services. According to Upwork, the freelance economy has grown significantly since the coronavirus outbreak with a $1.2 trillion dollar contribution to the US economy, a 22% increase from 2019.
Wood Smith reported on a criminal investigation regarding Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg. After initially telling authorities that he thought he hit a deer, South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg released a statement late Monday night, detailing his role in a fatal accident and revealing that he discovered the victim when he returned to the scene the next day.
Ravnsborg, 44, said he was traveling west on U.S. Highway 14, about a mile west of Highmore, South Dakota, in a Ford Taurus when he unknowingly struck and killed Joseph Boever, 55. Boever’s body was found the next morning, according to Highway Patrol.
“My chief of staff and I checked and it was apparent that Mr. Boever was deceased,” Ravnsborg said in the statement. “I immediately drove to Sheriff Volek’s home to report the discovery and he accompanied me back to the scene. Once there, the sheriff instructed me that he would handle the investigation, and asked me to return to Pierre.”
The investigation is being handled by the South Dakota Highway Patrol and the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation, officials told reporters on Tuesday.
Sarah Train then reported on the new Paris Hilton documentary and how she reveals her true self. On Monday, Youtube Originals debuted the new documentary, “This is Paris,” which documents the life, luxury and legacy of Paris Hilton. Not only do we get an inside scoop on the daily life of the socialite, but we also see her in a new light.
Throughout the documentary, Hilton discusses her rise to fame and how she developed her image. Growing up in New York City, she became enchanted with the fashion world.
As a young teen, she also started exploring the night life, which gave her the reputation of vapid partying. In the documentary, we see how this image propelled her to stardom, making her the first real celebrity famous for “being famous.” Hilton became known for her tiny dogs, designer purses, and starting the “selfie” trend.
Hilton opened up about the #BreakingCodeSilence campaign and the alleged childhood abuse she faced while at Provo Canyon Boarding School in Utah during her stay in 1999. Hilton says that she still has nightmares about it, and talks about the specific abuse she faced while staying there.
Now 39 years old and a successful entrepreneur, Hilton has evolved and become a trailblazer for pop culture and other influencers of this era. It’s quite interesting to see her in a new light, stripped away from her media persona. “This is Paris” is now available on YouTube.com.
Next, Jordan discussed the disturbing new totals of COVID-19 cases in India. Today, confirmed coronavirus cases in India have surpassed an incredible 5 million and counting.
According to AP News, the extremely populous country has reported upwards of a million cases this month alone and is expected to soon pass the United States in severity. India’s Health Ministry has reported that over 1,290 people have died in the last 24 hours.
Health experts fear that “India’s fatality rate could increase in coming weeks with lockdown restrictions relaxed except in high-risk areas.”
There is also a concern for overwhelmed hospitals. India’s healthcare resources are spread poorly across the country and with close to 600 million living in rural areas, a bigger health crisis is almost inevitable. Keep listening to the Athens Journal for more updates on coverage of the pandemic in India.
Sarah Train then reported an update on the raging wildfires along the West Coast. It has been weeks of dry hot weather on the West Coast, which has only fueled the catastrophic wildfires that have killed more than 34 people and left many homeless.
The fires have covered 4.7 million acres and the dry grass and rapid winds have not helped the efforts of more than 16,000 firefighters trying to fight the blaze on the frontlines.
This week’s forecast shows rain this week for the northwest region, which could bring some much needed relief, but the rest of California still remains dry and ripe. Many state officials believe that the future of fires will only become worse with climate change.
While red flag warnings are still in place in northern California into southern Oregon, air conditions have slowly started to improve. The West Coast has experienced some of the planet’s most polluted skies, according to the New York Times.
Polluted air that is unhealthy to breath was recorded in Montana and all the way up in Canada. Smoke has now reached higher altitudes as well.
With over 4.7 million acres burned, hundreds of homes have been lost. However, it is reported that the economic blow to these struggling regions will be staggering as well. According to Tom Corringham, a researcher at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the damages could cost over $20 billion this year alone.
Sarah D took over the Sports Power Minute. The Big 10 is going to give their fall football season a chance after all.
According to ESPN, the Big 10 announced on Wednesday that their comeback to college football will resume the weekend of Oct. 24. Each team will have an eight-game schedule.
The Big 10 has reversed their course of action after initially postponing football and all other fall sports to the spring in an effort to keep their players safe given the pandemic. On Tuesday, the Big 10’s Council of Presidents and Chancellors voted unanimously to restart sports this fall.
AP News reported that the move came amid pressure from coaches, a lawsuit from players, and even President Trump himself. Although, ESPN reports that the most important factor that went into making the final decision was the significantly improved COVID-19 resources, specifically the availability of rapid testing programs.
Many wondered if some Big 10 teams still could not end up playing this season but Wisconsin chancellor Rebecca Blank shot that suspicion down quickly by saying, “We’re all going to play or not if we possibly can. This isn’t going to be a school-by-school thing.”
Even with a later start date this year, the Big 10 will still be able to finish their season in time to crown a champion to be considered for a semifinal spot, but it has to be approved by the playoff’s management committee.
So what does this mean for the PAC-12? As of now, they still remain on a later timeline to potentially kick off their season due in part to local regulations in California and Oregon.
In addition, ESPN explained that half of the conference still has not been cleared by public health officials to resume contact practices let alone games. Until that status changes, the league’s presidents and chancellors will not consider a vote to return this fall.
Finally Wood Smith gave an update on the election coverage. For the first time in Scientific American’s 175-year history, the popular science magazine has made an endorsement for president. Urging its readers Tuesday to vote for former Vice President Joe Biden.
In an editorial published online, the popular science magazine said it is endorsing Biden, the democratic nominee, for president as he offers “fact-based plans to protect our health, our economy and the environment,” among other proposals. “We do not do this lightly,” it said.
The editorial, which will also be published in the magazine’s October issue, said the magazine was compelled this year to endorse Biden as President Donald Trump “has badly damaged the U.S. and its people” through his alleged rejection of evidence and science.
The magazine states that it is unclear how many of Biden’s goals will be accomplished during his time in office, but that Biden is aware of the importance to heed science in the recovery from the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.