After a prolonged hiatus—due to the Millennial Manifesto—we’re back and ready to fill you in the goings-on the world over! But rather than digging right on in, let’s take this post to get up to speed on what major news broke while I was, as some youths say, “straight chillin’.”
Boko Haram abducted more than 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria. The Islamist militant group, which the Nigerian government has long struggled to eradicate, posed as soldiers sent to keep the girls safe. Once outside of the school, the militants burnt down the school and took the girls to a currently unknown location. A number of girls who were able to escape from the vehicles have provided chilling details about what they went through, while reports claim the girls have been forced to “convert” to Islam and are being married to members of Boko Haram against their will. A video released by the group shows a large group of the girls and called for a prisoner exchange with the Nigerian government, which the government rejected. Meanwhile, the international community has responded with a widespread solidarity display with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls, and the U.S. has sent troops to assist Nigerian forces in locating and rescuing the students.
Things in Ukraine still pretty awful. The eastern region of Ukraine saw two referendums on secession, coming from Donetsk and Luhansk. Although the legitimacy of these votes are contentious due to boycotts and potentially old voter rolls, both resulted in the official declaration of separation from Ukraine. These cities have seen a great deal of unrest following the Crimean secession and subsequent annexation by Russia, with both Russian and Ukrainian troops edging closer to what looked like an actual, official war. But even with Russia’s seeming interest in slowly eating Ukraine one separatist movement at a time, Putin has held off on annexing the southeast region. Instead of backing calls coming from Donetsk and Luhansk, Putin called for negotiations between the self-declared republics and the government in Kiev.
White House report on climate change released. Can you guess what it said? Basically backing up every other report released, climate change is happening and it’s totally bad news for every single human on Earth. But humans are good at being the worst, so the talk shows have been getting all up in Bill Nye’s business, giving him a bunch of sass about whether climate change is even a thing rather than looking at the findings of the report. You know what, I’ll let John Oliver take this one.
Nerd Prom happened and Obama was hilarious as usual. The annual White House Correspondent’s Dinner took place on May 3, allowing celebrities to brush elbows with politicians and pose for selfies, as one does. The president was funny, the parody video of Joe Biden and Julia Louis-Dreyfus was inspiring, and all the Washington basked in the humor of John Boehner claiming to have something to actually do on the Hill. Laugh to hide the tears, America.
An old man was racist. Donald Sterling—owner of the LA Clippers—was caught on tape saying some quite rude things, including instructing his girlfriend not to bring black people to basketball games. A media frenzy followed, and the NBA banned Sterling from professional basketball for life and fined him $2.5 million. This is great, yes? NO! Sterling is like a gazillion years old and is going to make close to $1 billion selling the Clippers, so the whole thing is the practical equivalent of looking at him sideways with a really angry expression when he’s not even paying attention. Meanwhile, he continues to be a horrible human, of course.
Protests in Venezuela continue. Anti-corruption-turned-anti-government protests are still challenging President Nicolas Maduro. The allegedly violent breakup of a protest camp resulted in the arrest of more than 240 demonstrators, while the number killed since the beginning of the unrest in February is currently 40. South American countries are taking a stand against the violence, with Colombia turning off electricity to the country and considering continuing what was a temporary suspension of gas services. The US Senate also took up sanctions against the Venezuelan government.
What stories have you been following? Let us know in the comments!
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