Summit Briefing: Week of 11/16/20

Flooding in Marikina, Philippines

Your Summit Weekly Briefing

Flooding in Marikina

1. General News: Typhoon Vamco

Last Wednesday night, Typhoon Vamco made landfall in the Philippines, with the island of Luzon being it worst. Since then, 67 people have died, and $9.7 million in infrastructure has been destroyed, plus another $24.7 million in agricultural damage. Much of this has been due to flooding; according to Manuel Mamba, governor of the Cagayan region, “This is the worst flooding that we had in the last 45 years. We see that it is worsening every year.”

Typhoon Vamco is the sixth cyclone to hit the Philippines in just four weeks, and the 21st this year overall. It has since moved on to Vietnam, making landfall Sunday the 15th. Though the typhoon is weakening, and will continue to do so as it moves inland, it is still expected to cause landslides and flooding. 

 

Related: Climate change is causing hurricanes, cyclones and typhoons such as Vamco to become stronger and more frequent, according to a study released in May of 2020. The study’s author, Jim Kossin told CNN: “…during its lifetime, a hurricane is 8% more likely to be a major hurricane in this decade compared to the last decade.” Hurricanes in categories 3-5 tend to cause the most damage. As the amount of higher category hurricanes increase, so will the carnage.

Typhoon Vamco was at about the same intensity as a Category 2 hurricane when it made landfall in the Philippines. 

2. Covid-19: Pandemic Fatigue

As quarantine has stretched on, many have felt frustrated with the restrictions it entails. This, according to U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams, is one of the main factors in the rising numbers of cases across the country. According to Adams, “The virus hit different places of the country at different points. And so you’ve had people who’ve been doing these things since February, March, April, but they didn’t really start to see the wave until later on. And they’re just plain tired,” (NPR). As people continue to see friends and family, go out, and generally go about their lives in a “business as usual” fashion, case counts rise. This can be seen in The New York Time’s “Covid in the U.S.: Latest Map and Case Count”:

A range that describes total cases on a spectrum of 100s of thousands.

A map that shows hundreds of thousands of daily cases for 100,000 people. The eastern part of the midwest has the highest.

As compared to USA Today’s “Coronavirus reopening” map: 

A map that describes how many people are leaving the house. The eastern midwest and east coast are leaving the house more, while the west is leaving the house less. The south is a variance of the two.

As one can see, the parts of the US that are listed as hot spots on the NY Times map (red and orange zones) are largely the ones that are seeing an increase in day-to-day outside the home activity (magenta states on USA Today map), a compelling correlation. 

 

Without a vaccine, the solution to this issue is a simple one: follow the CDC guidelines during Covid-19, or as Adams calls them, “the three W’s”: Wash your hands/frequently sanitize high touch surfaces, Wear a mask, and Watch your distance from other people—that is, stay 6 feet apart. While he acknowledges it may be difficult to resist bending some of these rules as the holidays approach, Adams reminds us “…if you can’t do these things in this environment where you’re planning on coming together, then you should probably stay home because, again, this virus is incredibly unforgiving.”

 

Related: According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the U.S.’s top infectious disease expert, President Trump has not allowed his Coronavirus task force to communicate with President-elect Biden’s. This communication could be critical in timely COVID-19  response.

 

Stay Informed: CNN reports live, bite-sized updates on Coronavirus here.

3. Politics: Trump’s refusal to concede

Though Joe Biden has won the presidential race, Donald Trump appears to be hesitating on the issue of concession. “He [Biden] won because the Election was Rigged.” Trump tweeted Sunday morning. While some hoped the tweet might indicate a leaning towards a peaceful transition of power, Trump followed up an hour later: “He [Biden] only won in the eyes of the FAKE NEWS MEDIA. I concede NOTHING! We have a long way to go. This was a RIGGED ELECTION!” 

Donald Trump has used claims of a rigged election, which have been proven false, to justify refusing to aid a smooth transition from one president to another since election week. 

4. Sports: Giants Make NFC

The Giants have broken an 8-game losing streak against the Eagles, winning 27-17 on Sunday the 15th. The game is considered to be quarterback Daniel Jones’ best, with both a rushing touchdown and multiple pivotal throws. 

5. Summit: Scholarships

Summit K2’s college counselor sent out a list of scholarships, a useful resource for those worried about paying their way through college. Even if you are not a current Senior, I cannot recommend enough finding financial aid, writing essays, and making potential college lists sooner rather than later. Trust me, it is a lot less stressful.

6. Actions

Editor’s note: each week, I will be posting petitions to sign/actions to take to support the BLM movement, ICE detainees, and other important matters. Remember, your voice counts, so use it.

 

  • Sign this petition from Color of Change to demand justice for Walter Wallace Jr., a Black man having a mental health crisis shot by police in Philadelphia.
  • Donate to UNICEF to aid typhoon victims in the Philippines.

 

And as always:

  • Watch or listen or listen to this playlist. All advertisement revenue goes to Black Lives Matter. I currently have it on in the background as I am writing this brief. Do not skip the ads, the donations will not go through otherwise.

 

  • Watch or listen to this video. All advertisement revenue goes to various aid organizations easing the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. Please note it is blocked on school Chromebooks due to being in the “Entertainment” category

 

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