Summit Briefing: Week of 12/15/20
Your Summit Weekly Briefing
By Alex Tananbaum and Ashwath Vimal
1. General News: Same-sex adoption banned in Hungary
With the 21st century drastically improving in terms of acceptance and open-mindedness towards different groups of people, it comes as unfortunate news that the country of Hungary have effectively banned same-sex couples from adopting children with a newly passed law. This new law was approved by Hungary’s parliament on Tuesday, Dec. 15, stating that only married couples can adopt, with single people having to get special permission to adopt. This stops gay or lesbian couples from getting married as same-sex marriage is prohibited in Hungary, so now one person in same-sex couples cannot even apply for adoption as a single person, as Hungary’s government would most likely refuse. Hungary has shown a pattern of being opposed towards the LGBTQ+ community, as in May of this year, the Hungarian government made it so that Transgender, genderfluid, intersex, nonbinary, and etc. people cannot legally change their sex on documents.
2. COVID-19: First vaccines now delivered
The first doses of a COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer, approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has been received by all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Many healthcare workers were administered the vaccine on December 14. Normal citizens will not receive the vaccine for another couple of months. With the death toll officially rising to 300,000 in the U.S., this very hopeful news for the American people. 145 healthcare hospitals were expected to get the vaccine on Monday, 425 on Tuesday, and 66 on Wednesdays. 2.9 million doses were expected to be delivered throughout this week, amounting to 1.45 million people with the ability to receive the vaccine, as every person needs two doses. With another vaccine from Moderna in the process of getting approved, the end of the COVID-19 pandemic may come sooner than later, with doctors like Anthony Fauci stating it should come to its end at the end of the second quarter of 2021. It has been said that the Pfizer vaccine will not work right away, but will take time to have its full effect.
Have questions about the vaccine? The New York Times probably has the answers at Answers to Your Questions About the New Covid Vaccines in the U.S. (reminder: if you have reached your free article limit for the month, open the link or search the headline in an incognito tab).
Stay Informed: CNN reports live, bite-sized updates on COVID-19 here.
3. Politics: Biden wins the Electoral College
Let’s start with how the Electoral Certification process works. According to NPR, there are three steps for official presidential certification:
- The people vote, but not directly for president. When a ballot is cast for a candidate, it goes towards a group of electors chosen by the candidate’s political party within the state. Electors are usually already involved in the world of politics as donors, activists or officials.
- The electors vote. Each state’s electoral vote occured between 7 a.m. PT and 4 p.m. PT (10 a.m. ET-7 p.m. ET) Monday the Dec. 14, usually in the states’ capitals. This year some votes were held virtually due to COVID-19. While electors are nominated to vote for a certain candidate, there have been instances of faithless electors–electors that “go rogue” and vote for a different candidate. However, 32 states have laws punishing faithless electors, and 15 of those penalize, cancel or remove the votes of the electors, which the Supreme Court held as Constitutional in July of this year. After their votes are tallied, electors certify the results, which are then sent to the following governmental branches along with a document from the governor certifying the state’s vote totals.
- The certified results are sent to the National Archives and Records Administration, every state’s secretary of state, the presiding judge of the federal district court where the electors met and to the president of the Senate (the president of the Senate is the Vice President, currently Mike Pence). If there is an objection to a states’ results, it must be written down and come from both a House and Senate member to be validated. If this were to happen, there would be a debate over the objection.
President-elect Joe Biden cleared the second step Monday at 2:30 p.m. PT when Calif. cast its 55 electoral votes in his favor, thereby pushing him over the necessary edge of 270 electoral votes. Congress will convene to certify the votes next month, making the election official. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has urged Republican senators not to object to the election results.
Related: While Republicans in Ga., Pa., Wis., Nev. and Mich. are discussing creating an alternate, Republican-leaning slate of electors after senior White House advisor Stephen Miller suggested the course of action on “Fox & Friends”, the New York Times article linked above and here explains that such results would have no legal standing, as the electors would not have been appointed in proportion to the states’ popular vote.
4. Sports: Cleveland Indians change their team name, Giannis Antetokounmpo re-signs with Milwauke Bucks
On Monday, Dec. 14, the Major League’s baseball team the Cleveland Indians announced that they would be dropping the “Indians” part of their team name as soon as possible. The team’s owner, Paul Dolan, stated that he now understands that these types of names are offensive towards Indigenous people. This pressure for sports teams that have names based on Native heritage and slurs to change their names all of a sudden is most likely due to the recent surge of revelations of racism in America. Cleveland’s baseball team has followed the lead of The Washington Football team, formerly known as the Washington Redskins. The baseball team will officially change their name once a new name has been found.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, a two time most valuable player and four time All-Star has already achieved what most retired NBA players could not in his seven year career. Because of this, Antetokounmpo has signed a 228 million dollar five year contract with his team, the Milwaukee Bucks, and has broken a record, with his contract being the largest in NBA history. The contract includes the option to opt out of his signing a year early and find a new team to be a part of. Antetokounmpo has officially cemented his loyalty to the Bucks with this signing, and only time will tell if he will succeed and stay in this team.
5. Summit: Moffet Park, Moffet Field and Google
Read staff writer Alexander Gorodnov’s article “Moffet Park and Moffet Field Gain Interest From Google and Council” on the redevelopment of real estate in Sunnyvale.
Atlas (West Seattle): Highs this week will stay squarely in the 49-51℉ range. Lows will vary a bit more, with today’s being 45℉, 43℉ Thursday and 46℉ Friday. They will then rise to 48℉ Saturday, and fall again Sunday-Monday, which will range from 40-41℉. This week will also be gloomy. Expect rain today-Saturday and a high chance of showers Sunday-Monday.
Olympus (Tacoma): Highs this week will range from 48-49℉ today-Friday, then rise to 50-51℉ Saturday-Sunday, and finally go back down to 45℉ Monday. Today’s lows will be 43℉, dip to 41℉ Thurs, then rise to 45-46℉ Fri-Sat and finally fall again to 40℉ Sun and 38℉ Mon. Today will be rainy, and expect scattered showers on Thursday, then rain again Friday-Sunday. Showers will continue again through Monday.
Sierra (Seattle): This week’s highs will sit at 47℉ today-Friday, pick up on Saturday and Sunday at 49-50℉ and finally drop again to 45℉ on Monday. Lows will be 42℉ today, then go down to 31℉ Thursday, rise again to 44℉ Fri and 46℉ Saturday and finally fall again Sunday-Monday to 38-39℉. Expect rain today, and continue to bring an umbrella through the rest of the week as partial showers dampen Thursday, rain bombards Friday-Saturday, and showers return Sunday-Monday.
Denali (Sunnyvale): Today’s high will be 62℉, then fall to 57℉ on Thursday. It will then come back up to 60℉ Friday-Saturday, rise to 62℉ Sun, and finally reach an all-week high of 64℉ Monday. Today’s low will be 50℉, then sit at 38-39℉ Thursday-Saturday. It’ll rise to 42℉ Sunday, then to 44℉ Monday. Today, Thursday and Saturday will be mostly cloudy, but for the rest of the week expect full sun.
Everest and Prep (Redwood City): Expect a temperate week with highs of 61℉ today, 54℉ Thursday, and 58-59℉ Friday-Sunday, while Monday’s high will be back up to 60℉. Lows today will be 49℉, then stay at 40℉ Thursday-Saturday. Sunday-Monday, they’ll be up to 43-44℉. Today, Thursday, Saturday and Monday will be mostly cloudy, while the rest of the week will be full sun.
K2 (El Cerrito): Temperature highs will be fairly uniform in my fair home city this week with today-Thursday being 58-59℉, a 60℉ Friday, then back to a 59℉ Saturday-Sunday and finally a 61℉ Monday. Lows today will be 49℉, 39-40℉ Thursday-Saturday, 42℉ Sunday and 45℉ Monday. Expect a cloudy week as well, with the sun being completely covered today and partial clouds the rest of the week.
Tam (Richmond): Expect a cooler start to the week with highs today reaching 40℉, 46℉ Thursday-Friday, and 48℉ Saturday. Highs will then pick up again Sunday-Monday at 54℉. Lows today will sit at 28℉, 30℉ Thursday, and back to 28℉ Friday. They’ll then rise to 35℉ Saturday, 31℉ Sunday, and back up to 37℉ Monday. Today will be rainy, but you won’t need your umbrella for the rest of the week as only partial clouds will cover the sun every day except Saturday, which will be cloudy.
Shasta (Daly City): This week’s temperature highs will be fairly uniform, with today’s being 59℉ and Thursday-Monday’s being 56-57℉ with the exception of Saturday, which will be 58℉. Lows will be fairly similar as well, with today’s being 50℉, Thursday-Sunday 43-44℉, and 45℉ Monday. The entire week, including today, will be partially cloudy.
Tahoma (San Jose): Highs this week will start at 63℉ today, fall to 57℉ Thursday, then rise again to 60-61℉ Friday-Sunday and finish at 62℉ Monday. Lows will move around a bit more with today’s being 43℉, 39℉ Thurs, 37℉ Friday and back to 39℉ Saturday. Lows will rise again to 41℉ Sunday and end at 43℉ Monday. The entire week will be partially cloudy, with the exception of Sunday, which will be sunny.
7. Actions: Outbreak in the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison (SATF)
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.
#StoptheSAFTOutbreak via Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ)
There is a new COVID-19 surge at the Calif. Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison (SATF), which was built in 1997, and billed as a “therapeutic model” prison. According to SURJ:
“…due to institutional dilapidation, even with newer minted and “fortified” facilities of SATF (at reported 141% capacity) with a variety of non-porous housing options, we are still witnessing COVID-19 spreading rapidly through various physically designed buildings.”
- Read the demands loved ones of those incarcerated have made here.
- Call and email Secretary Kathleen Allison at 916-323-6001 or Kathleen.Allison@cdcr.ca.gov
- Call and email SAFT Warden Theresa Cisneros at 559-992-7100 x7154 or Theresa.email@example.com
- Call Brent public information officer at SATF and assistant to the warden at 559-992-7154
- Email Calif. Governor Gavin Newsom by following these steps:
- Visit the Governor’s comment page: https://govapps.gov.ca.gov/gov40mail/.
- Select “Have Comment.”
- Fill out your first name, last name and email address.
- Select “Criminal Justice” from the dropdown menu.
- Click “Continue”
- Select “Con”
- Enter the sample text below into the letter field (with your own edits, if you like)
- Click “Send.”
Sample text (via SURJ):
My name is _____, and I’m deeply concerned about our community members in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak at SATF. This must be addressed ASAP with emergency releases, access to adequate medical care, and enforcing all staff to wear PPE. I implore you to act now, because you are responsible for saving lives.
Thank you for your time.
Find more actions from SURJ here.
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
- Learn more about the crisis at www.monareliefye.org/.
Your briefing team will be taking a break the next three weeks for the Winter Break. We’ll be back on January 12 bringing you news and more.
Happy Holidays, Everyone!