The earth may be sinking, Obama is chastising China, and crack cocaine may be up-and-coming! We’re explaining soccer controversies and nuclear summits. Recap this week in the news with this week’s Gist.
Bend it (Pay Us) Like Beckham
- Key female soccer stars like Alex Morgan and Hope Solo have filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
- Female players have been fighting the U.S. Soccer Federation for years about equal and fair pay.
- This time, the USSF responded to their request for a raise as “irrational.” Rookie mistake, USSF, you basically just called a woman crazy, big mistake.
- In 1991, when the U.S. women’s team won the World Cup– earning the USSF a 120 million dollar contract with Nike– players were making $15,000. They couldn’t even afford an apartment and couldn’t keep a second job due to all of the traveling.
- They even had to take hotel shuttles to games due to lack of funding; that is, if they even had a hotel.
- The U.S. women’s soccer team has won 3 World Cups and 4 gold metals. Meanwhile, the men’s team has been in the quarterfinals once in the last 50 years.
- When players threatened to sit out the Olympics, the USSF finally budged, and their current salaries are around $75,000. But now? The girls are being called ungrateful and naïve for wanting a raise. Cue official paperwork and a nice bicycle kick.
Tensions are high with China following Obama’s nuclear summit:
- This Thursday, more than 50 world leaders gathered to attend Obama’s last nuclear summit, though the attention was on President Xi Jinping of China.
- The United States and China were to sign a climate change accord later in April to exemplify unity over a controversial issue, especially between the two nations.
- However, Obama moved on to press Mr. Xi about China’s military facilities construction in the South China Sea.
- Why is that a big deal? Well, let’s just say America has some eggs in the Asia-Pacific region’s basket.
- China’s neighboring countries state that China is trying to control that waterway– a huge deal for trade. The U.S. has deployed Navy ships to ensure the safety of that area, however tensions have been running extremely high.
- “’Our two countries have some disputes and disagreements,’ Mr. Xi replied. He called for both sides to ‘avoid misunderstanding and misperceptions,’ and to respect each other’s core interests — a polite warning not to meddle in the South China Sea, which Beijing regards as a core interest.”
Trump thinks women should be punished for having abortions:
- This Wednesday, Donald trump recanted on a major blunder in the political arena.
- What happened this time? After correspondence with MSNBC, Trump stated that women who undergo abortions should face “some form of punishment” if it is outlawed. Hm.
- Host, Chris Matthews, asked Trump to clarify his stance, questioning what kind of punishment he suggests, who exactly would be punished (the men and/or doctors), and how he would implement it.
- Trump refused to answer and continuously changed the subject.
- Several hours– and a lot of scrutiny– later, Trump recanted his statement, saying women are the victims and doctors should be punished.
- This is particularly dramatic because the Wisconsin primaries are approaching, and majority of the polls say Trump won’t win this state– which is a big deal.
College campuses crack down on Title IX:
- By now, I’m sure you’ve heard of the documentary The Hunting Ground– a tell-all about the scandals behind university sexual misconduct.
- Hopefully, you’ve also heard of Title IX– an equal rights federal law. Due to the plethora of reported sexual misconduct on campuses nation-wide, every university is now required to staff at least 1 part-time title IX employee.
- Title IX costs can run a university anywhere from $10,000- $500,000 including attorney fees, Title IX advisor salaries, and PR control.
- In a student-organized campus discussion, Yale students debated whether flirting is now crossing the line, and, if so, how they would be able to date without worrying about a lawsuit. They even mulled over signing explicit contracts outlining what would and would not be permitted.
- We’ve seen this action from Obama before; and we’re into it.
- The sentences of incarcerated citizens on drug-related charges are being revisited. In light of the legalization of marijuana in some states, other severe drug sentences are also being scrutinized for unnecessary harshness.
- A huge controversy surrounding drug charges is the inconsistency of punishment for similar drugs. Powder cocaine– a drug most commonly used by higher-income white citizens – has a notoriously less severe sentence than its sibling drug, crack cocaine– which is most commonly used by lower-income black citizens.
- As a result, incarceration numbers of black men were rising by the day, while white incarceration numbers were not.
- Most people saw this harsh powder cocaine sentence as outright racist, while many officials denied and maintained that it was simply a more dangerous drug.
- Obama is now revisiting drug sentencing, and has recently released 61 citizens serving too severe of a sentence for their violations.
Think Atlantis is pretty cool? Good, because you might be living in it soon:
- A warning published Thursday in Nature, a science journal, says melting ice in Antarctica has the potential to cause a 3 feet rise in sea level by the end of this century.
- The publication also says with ice melting in additional areas of the world, seas may rise 5-6 feet by the year 2100– far more than a 2013 U.N. study.
- “We’re looking at the potential for a rate of sea level rise that we will be measuring in centimeters (rather than milliliters) per year– literally an order of magnitude faster,” said Robert DeConto.
- Antarctica could contribute almost 50 feet of water to the sea level. Start investing in your tridents now, people.
- ISIS, Boko Haram, and AGRM are some of the most infamous terrorist organizations out there. Gun violence and suicide bombings are at an all-time high, but for Africa, this has been the norm.
- After westerners established new borders following WWII, wars and genocide in Africa have been ongoing.
- Why? Because the geniuses who made the new borders didn’t take into account all of the regional, religious and cultural differences– which, as we know, causes tumultuous environments.
- An Al-Qaeda affiliate, Al Shabaab, has now branched out of its east African roots in Somalia and is now targeting Kenya, pulling off major attacks and bombings in and around the capital.
- In a new recruitment wave, more than 100 boy soldiers are fighting for the organization, most of whom are still suffering from serious injuries from past battles they’ve served in.