We get it, Wednesdays can be tough to get through. In an effort to keep up with the world’s ever-changing news landscape, we’ve put together the top 10 headlines so you can stay on top of things.
1. The London Attack
On March 22nd, five people (including the attacker) were tragically killed in a terrorist attack on Westminster Bridge (near the Houses of Parliament) in London. More than 50 people were injured. The attack itself only lasted 82 seconds and involved a man named Khalid Masood driving a car hired from a depot in Birmingham; he used the car to hit pedestrians indiscriminately, going almost 80 miles per hour.
Masood had a criminal record (his most recent conviction having to do with life possession in 2003) and had been previously investigated, according to Prime Minister Theresa May, in relation to “concerns about violent extremism”, but did not seem like a threat at that time. Because of the attack, UK has set it’s terror threat level to “severe” and the Mayor of London has expressed that this will not change for some time, as a subsequent attack is highly likely.
2. Hosni Mubarak has been granted freedom
Egyptian former president (or as some call him, Egypt’s successfully overthrown dictator) Hosni Mubarak, was released after spending a mere 6 years detained in one of Cairo’s military hospitals. Mubarak has been acquitted of all charges of murdering 239 protesters during the Arab spring uprising of 2011 and has returned to his home in a suburb in Cairo where he is now living seemingly comfortably with family and friends. Mubarak was also charged with corruption, but this charge was overturned in 2015. Egyptians, although some are hopeful about the future of Egypt and some feel more or less resigned, enemies and supporters of Mubarak alike, seem collectively unsurprised by Mubarak’s release.
3. Trump’s healthcare bill failed
Donald Trump’s proposed “healthcare” plan (meant to “repeal and replace” Obama’s Affordable Care Act) was pulled on Friday by Paul Ryan due to it’s inevitable failure to garner the necessary votes, even though the GOP holds majority in both the House and the Senate. In response, Trump has publicly blamed both the House Freedom Caucus and Democrats in general for the bill’s lack of support. A poll conducted by CBS indicates that the bill lacked support simply because it was not a popular bill, as opposed to having anything to do with Donald Trump himself or the fact that either Republicans or Democrats didn’t compromise.
4. Hundreds of minority girls have gone missing in DC
More than 500 juveniles have been reported missing from DC in the first three months of 2017. The missing children and teens have been primarily Latina and black females, and it is feared that these are incidents of human trafficking. While some say that more girls have gone missing recently than during the beginning of the year, others say this impression is only created by greater social media presence of the issue. Either way, this should be a top-priority issue and many are outraged that it is not being treated as such.
5. Scottish parliament in support of referendum for its independence
The Scottish parliament will vote as to whether to request another referendum for independence from the UK on the 28th of March. The original vote was postponed due to the attack in London. This gives Scotland time – albeit, not very much – to begin discussions before Theresa May intends to trigger Article 50 (which would officially kickstart the “Brexit” process).
6. Agreement is reached to replace 18K contaminated water lines in Flint by 2020
Flint, Michigan, which first made headlines in 2014 after reports of lead-contaminated water broke, has been suffering from a water crisis for the last three years now. The effects of the contamination could impact residents for the rest of their lives; among the health risks of lead contamination are impaired mental cognition and behavioral disorders. Young children and pregnant women are especially susceptible.
A $97 million settlement has been approved by a federal judge. The money will cover the replacement of water lines made of lead or “galvanized steel.” About 18,000 households will be affected by the year 2020.
Flint is a particularly vulnerable city, with over 41% of residents living below the poverty line and a demographic makeup of about 56% African American. The city is located about an hour drive north of Detroit.
7. First annual #MuslimWomensDay is celebrated
Hundreds of thousands took to social media (namely Twitter) in support of #MuslimWomensDay on the 27th of March. The date coincides with Women’s History Month. The campaign is due to partnerships between Refinery29, Teen Vogue, Muslim Girl, and HerCampus, who marketed the day to the world.
Women – Muslim and non – were encouraged to share their experiences and stories around the world. The day was meant to highlight the diversity and power of Muslim women.
8. New population of tigers found in eastern Thailand
A new population of rare tigers have been discovered in eastern Thailand. According to BBC, camera traps captured footage of at least six cubs. The discovery is an important one, as the current total population estimate wavers at just around 250. Poachers post the biggest threat to their safety at the moment.
The protection of these animals is critical; in a world where “major league” animals such as tigers and elephants are at risk of extinction due to poaching, this is an environmental wake-up call for all of us.
9. Special Olympics gears up to start next week
The Special Olympics is gearing up to begin a whirlwind of competitions. This year, the games will be hosted throughout the US, from Texas, to Illinois. Athletes in the Special Olympics are children and adults with intellectual disabilities, hailing from all around the world. Over 4.7 million athletes from 169 countries have participated, some as young as 8 years old.
10. Kenya in critical condition, in addition to Somalia’s famine crisis
The Red Cross announced that Kenya is facing a serious humanitarian crisis, with over 3 million in need of food aid as drought takes hold of yet another country. The timing of Kenya’s crises joins several other East African countries, namely, Somalia, South Sudan, Nigeria, and Ethiopia.
Out of the $4.4 billion needed in funds, only about 10% have been raised, according to the UN.