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Mass shootings in Texas and Ohio leave 31 people dead; protests disrupt Hong Kong’s transportation systems, bringing the city to a standstill.
America’s gun violence epidemic
- In the span of 24 hours last weekend, two mass shootings — one in El Paso, Texas, and the other in Dayton, Ohio — left more than 30 people dead. [AP / Matt Sedensky]
- The first shooting occurred in a crowded Walmart in El Paso Saturday morning. At least 22 people died and 24 were injured. [Vox / Anya van Wagtendonk, Sean Collins, and German Lopez]
- The suspect, who was captured alive, is a 21-year-old white man from Allen, Texas. Based on racist and xenophobic rhetoric he posted online before the shooting, officials are looking into charging him with hate crimes and domestic terrorism. [Washington Post / Annie Gowen, Mark Berman, Tim Craig, and Hannah Natanson]
- Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush used the term “white terrorism” for the shooting and denounced the rise of white supremacy in the nation. A few days ago, FBI Director Christopher Wray told the Senate that most of the domestic terrorism arrests in 2019 have been related to white terrorism. [Atlantic / George P. Bush]
- The second shooting, happened in Dayton around 1 am on Sunday. Nine people died and at least 27 were wounded. [Vox / Anya van Wagtendonk]
- The suspect, a 24-year-old white man, was killed on the spot, and there have been no reports on his motive yet. According to past classmates, the suspected shooter had a history of being suspended from school for writing a “hit list” on the school’s bathroom walls — yet he was still allowed to buy a military-style rifle. [Dayton Daily News / Breaking News Staff, Jeremy Kelley, Will Garbe, and Jennifer Brett at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution]
- On Monday, President Trump gave a speech on the shootings and condemned racism, bigotry, and white supremacy. Rather than tackle the issue of gun control, however, he blamed gun violence on mental illness and video games, an argument many conservatives support. [NYT / Michael Crowley and Maggie Haberman]
- Lawmakers are calling on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to reconvene the Senate for an emergency session to pass the House-backed universal background check bill. It remains unclear if McConnell will do so based on his long history of blocking gun control legislation. [USA Today / Nicholas Wu]
- There have been 255 mass shootings in the US in 2019 so far. One thing is clear: There’s a gun violence epidemic in America. [Vox / German Lopez and Kavya Sukumar]
Intensity of Hong Kong protests reaches a new level
- Monday marked the fifth consecutive day of massive protests and strikes in Hong Kong, and clashes between demonstrators and police are intensifying. [South China Morning Post / Jun Mai]
- Hong Kong’s transportation system was mainly targeted during the strikes, as protesters blocked roads and train doors. More than 150 flights were also canceled as airport staff joined the protests. [CNN / Sherisse Pham]
- Since the protests began in June, the police have arrested 420 people and fired 1,000 rounds of tear gas. A growing number of protesters are expressing their anger toward the intensity of the police’s response. [NYT / Austin Ramzy, Mike Ives, and Tiffany May]
- Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam, who is under immense pressure from Beijing to quell the civil unrest, warned that these protests are harming the economy by killing the tourism industry. [Reuters / Donny Kwok and Clare Jim]
- A quick recap: These protests began two months ago over a bill that would allow extradition from Hong Kong to mainland China, a policy that people saw as a blow to their freedom. Although the bill has been suspended, protesters want a full-on withdrawal. [WSJ / Natasha Khan and Joyu Wang]
- The protests have become about more than just the extradition bill: They’ve turned into a call for independence from China and democracy within the territory. [National Interest / Gordon G. Chang]
- The protests are getting so massive that the Chinese military has even hinted that it could get involved. The use of force would only escalate an already volatile situation. [NYT / Steven Lee Myers]
- 8chan is a controversial online forum where multiple white supremacist mass shooters, including the El Paso shooter, have apparently radicalized. It’s offline — for now — after its cybersecurity provider dropped its services, calling 8chan “a cesspool of hate.” [NPR / Sasha Ingber]
- These people no longer shower and rely on bacteria on their skin to do soap’s job. Surprisingly, they say they don’t smell. [Guardian / Amy Fleming]
- Conservative Hungarian lawmakers are furious because Coca-Cola is running ads in Hungary featuring same-sex couples kissing. The company said it has no intention of pulling the ads. [CNN / Jackie Wattles]
- Colombia is giving citizenship to more than 24,000 children born in the country to Venezuelan migrants so they can receive adequate education and health care. [Reuters]
- A Brazilian gang leader tried to dress up as his daughter to escape prison. His disguise: a silicone mask, a long wig, glasses, jeans, and a pink T-shirt. It didn’t work. [BuzzFeed News / Matthew Champion]
“This Anglo man came here to kill Hispanics. I’m outraged and you should be, too. This entire nation should be outraged. In this day and age, with all the serious issues we face, we are still confronted with people who will kill another for the sole reason of the color of their skin.” [El Paso Sheriff Richard Wiles on the Walmart shooting]
Listen to this: A Green New Deal for gun control
Vox’s German Lopez explains why Democrats need a bold new plan for gun control. [Spotify]
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