PHOTO CREDIT: UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe via Flickr
Your Summit Weekly Briefing
By Ashwath Vimal, Angela Hwang and Ethan Ignatovsky
Disclaimer: Though the Weekly Briefings are no longer tagged in the Opinions section of Summit News and we try to remain as unbiased as possible, our opinions may show through in this article, especially in the “Actions” section.
- With Black History Month starting this week., take a moment to recognize what you can do in your school and community to honor it.
- Southern Africa is currently experiencing a tropical cyclone that has left over 80 people dead and tens of thousands negatively impacted. Madagascar has taken the brunt of the cyclone it seems, with at least 41 deaths and more than 110,000 affected. The situation was made even worse this past Monday when landfall was caused in Mozambique that hit Malwai and Madagascar as well. While the storm has grown weaker, some countries will most likely experience heavy showers this coming weekend. President of Malawi Lazarus Chakwera has officially stated that areas affected by the cyclone are in a state of disaster and that the resources needed will be provided to the affected people. President Chakwera has also requested aid from different organizations and agencies, with World Vision already helping in affected areas.
- This week marked the beginning of Black History Month, but unfortunately, it started off for the worse. Over a dozen historically black universities had to enter lockdown protocols or cancel classes this past Tuesday due to bomb threats the schools received. Among these include:
- Coppin State University
- Alcorn State University
- Tougaloo College
- Morgan State University
- Jackson State University
- Kentucky State University
- Fort Valley State University
- Howard University (who also received one on Jan. 31)
- Xavier University
- University of the District of Columbia
- Edward Waters University
Some of the schools continued their schedules through online education. Most of the reports said that law enforcement had gotten involved.
- The Omicron variant of Covid-19 comes in two forms, the more common BA.1 and the newer mutation known as BA.2. Not a lot is known about BA.2 yet but the Covid-19 Technical Lead for the WHO, Maria Van Kerkhove said there is no indication that contracting BA.2 is more dangerous than contracting BA.1, just that it is “slightly” easier. However, a Danish study published earlier this week found that BA.2 is “substantially more transmissible”. Either way, the WHO will be watching BA.2 closely to gain more information, with Van Kerkhove saying “BA.2 is one of the sub-lineages of omicron, so BA.2 is omicron, and it is a variant of concern”.
- Pfizer and BioNTech are seeking FDA authorization for use of their Covid-19 vaccine on children between 6 months old and 5 years old. Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla offered the reasoning for seeking this authorization, “As hospitalizations of children under 5 due to COVID-19 have soared, our mutual goal with the FDA is to prepare for future variant surges and provide parents with an option to help protect their children from this virus”. The FDA’s vaccine advisory committee will be meeting on February 15th to discuss the authorization and will make the decision based on the data and results of multiple tests. Dr. Moira Szilagyi, President of the American Academy of Pediatrics stated, “We urge a transparent and data-driven process to evaluate this vaccine for this age group and look forward to offering its protection to our youngest children”.
- The UN Security Council discussed the situation at the Russian-Ukrainian border on Monday. They claim Russia is preparing to invade, so they threatened sanctions, but Russia denies those claims. Russia has stationed more than 100,000 troops on the border, but Russia claims the numbers are wrong and the troops were there for “regular exercises”.
- President Umaro Cissoko Embaló of Guinea-Bissau, a country in West Africa, survived an attempted coup after five hours of gunfire on Tuesday. According to BBC, “Local media reported at least six deaths – four attackers and two guards.” The president also claimed there was a link to drug trafficking, but said nothing more on the topic. This is the fourth coup attempt in West Africa in the past year and a half.
- The Hill reports, “The U.S. national debt topped $30 trillion Tuesday, the highest it’s ever been, according to Treasury Department data.” Much to blame is the pandemic, as the government spent about $3.5 trillion. However, not all the blame can be placed on the pandemic: the U.S. has been spending more than its revenue for a very long time. To put it in perspective, though, the national debt in 2007 before the 2008 financial crisis was $9.2 trillion, but it’s grown by $7 trillion after 2019. It’s important to note that about $8 trillion of the debt is owed to “foreign investors” such as China and Japan.
- The NBA All-star game starters and captains have been announced. Kevin Durant, who is averaging 29.3 PTS, 7.4 REB and 5.8 AST, is the captain for the Eastern Conference, while LeBron James, who is averaging 29.1 PTS, 7.7 REB, and 6.3 AST is the captain for the Western Conference. Both captains will choose the starters for their team from a pool of 8 other players (4 from the East and 4 from the West), along with their reserves (who will be announced on Thursday) on February 10th. The 4 other starters from the East are: Giannis Antetokumpo, DeMar DeRozan, Joel Embiid, and Trae Young. The other 4 from the West are: Steph Curry, Andrew Wiggins, Nikola Jokic, and Ja Morant
This weekend was the Conference Championship round of the NFL playoffs.
- Cincinnati Bengals 27 – Kansas City Chiefs 24: The Chiefs had a substantial lead in the beginning, as they pulled out to a 21-3 lead by the middle of the second quarter. However, the Bengals rallied back to tie up the game by the end of the third quarter with a touchdown from Joe Burrow to receiver Ja’Marr Chase along with a two-point conversion. Both teams traded field goals in the fourth quarter sending the game to overtime tied 24-24. The Chiefs won the overtime coin toss, but things didn’t go their way when Vonn Bell intercepted a Patrick Mahomes pass. The Bengals got into a comfortable position and allowed rookie Evan McPherson to take his team to the Superbowl.
- San Francisco 49ers 17 – Los Angeles Rams 20: After a scoreless first quarter for both teams it was the 49ers that came out of the second quarter on top, 10-7. They would add to their lead in the 3rd with a Jimmy Garoppolo to George Kittle touchdown, but that would be the end of the scoring for the red and gold. A Mathew Stafford to Cooper Kupp touchdown and two field goals would be enough to take the lead and win the game, in a match where the defense was generally strong. Unfortunately, 49ers Safety Jaquiski Tartt dropped what looked to be an easy interception in the 4th quarter that might have changed the course of the game. Additionally, Jimmy Garoppolo made the fatal mistake of forcing a pass while trying to avoid a sack. The ball was picked off, and at that moment it became clear it would be a Bengals vs Rams Superbowl.
- The NFL has officially revealed who will be a part of their pre-game entertainment show for the Super Bowl LVI, which will have the Cincinnati Bengals face the Los Angeles Rams in what is bound to be a fantastic matchup. Starting the show, country music and a Columbian grammy-nominated artist Mickey Guyton will sing the national anthem, followed by grammy nominated R&B artist Jhené Aiko will sing “America the Beautiful”. For viewers with impaired hearing, actress Sandra Mae Frank will enact both musical performances in American Sign Language (ASL). Youth Orchestra Los Angeles and gospel duo Mary Mary will perform “Lift Every Voice and Sing”. During player warmups, award-winning producer Zedd will be the pregame DJ. Additionally, as already announced, the iconic Superbowl halftime show will include artists such as Dr. Dre, Snoop Dog, Kendrick Lamar, Mary J. Blige and Eminem.
- Disney recently announced that Columbian actress Rachel Zegler has been casted as Snow White in the upcoming reiteration of their first animated movie. Zegler said she “never in a million years imagined that that would be a possibility” for her. While fans have shared similar sentiments, they are in a much more negative manner. Many have criticized that it does not make sense to cast a Latina actress in a role that has the character described as having “skin as white as snow.” However, Zegler has not let these comments affect her, saying she has to just “believe in what I believe in”. This is not the only controversy this upcoming film has been involved in, however. Actor Peter Dinklage, who suffers from dwarfism, called the film “backwards” despite the Latina casting. Dinklage disapproves of the way “dwarves” have been portrayed in Snow White. Disney did respond and say that they will be taking a “different approach” so they do not “reinforce stereotypes”.
Atlas and Sierra (Seattle): Highs will stay relatively steady this week: 49℉ on Thursday, 47℉ on Friday, 48℉ on Saturday, 47℉ on Sunday, 49℉ on Monday and Tuesday and 50℉ on Wednesday. Lows will fluctuate a bit: 40℉ on Thursday, 41℉ on Friday, 35℉ on Saturday and Sunday, 41℉ on Monday and Tuesday and 44℉ on Wednesday. It will rain all week except Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday when it will be cloudy.
Summary: Highs in the upper 40’s, lows in the low 40’s, rain.
Olympus (Tacoma): Highs will stay relatively steady this week: 50℉ on Thursday, 47℉ on Friday, 48℉ on Saturday and Sunday, 49℉ on Monday, 50℉ on Tuesday and 52℉ on Wednesday. Lows will fluctuate a bit this week: 39℉ on Thursday, 41℉ on Friday, 34℉ on Saturday, 35℉ on Sunday, 41℉ on Monday and Tuesday and 44℉ on Wednesday. It will rain all week except Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday when it will be cloudy.
Summary: Highs in the upper 40’s, lows in the upper 30’s to low 40’s, rain.
Denali (Sunnyvale): Highs will rise slightly this week. 64℉ on Thursday, 65℉ on Friday and Saturday, 68℉ on Sunday, 69℉ on Monday, 68℉ on Tuesday and 70℉ on Wednesday. Lows will also rise this week: 39℉ on Thursday, 40℉ on Friday and Saturday, 42℉ on Sunday and Monday, 44℉ on Tuesday and 46℉ on Wednesday. It will be a sunny week with a few clouds.
Summary: Highs in the mid 60’s, lows in the low 40’s, sunny.
Everest and Prep (Redwood City): Highs will rise slightly this week: 62℉ from Thursday to Saturday, 64℉ on Sunday, 65℉ on Monday and Tuesday and 68℉ on Wednesday. Lows will also rise: 41℉ on Thursday and Friday, 42℉ on Saturday, 43℉ on Sunday and Monday, 46℉ on Tuesday and 47℉ on Wednesday. It will be sunny all week.
Summary: Highs in the mid 60’s, lows in the low 40’s, sunny.
K2 (El Cerrito): Highs will rise this week: 62℉ on Thursday and Friday, 63℉ on Saturday, 65℉ on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday and 70℉ on Wednesday. Lows will also rise this week: 41℉ on Thursday and Friday, 43℉ on Saturday, 42℉ on Sunday and Monday, 47℉ on Tuesday and 50℉ on Wednesday. It will be a sunny week with some clouds.
Summary: Highs in the mid 60’s, lows in the mid 40’s, sunny.
Tam (Richmond): Highs will rise a little this week: 62℉ from Thursday to Saturday, 65℉ on from Sunday to Tuesday and 70℉ on Wednesday. Lows will also rise: 41℉ on Thursday and Friday, 43℉ on Saturday, 42℉ on Sunday and Monday, 47℉ on Tuesday and 50℉ on Wednesday. It will be a sunny week with some clouds.
Summary: Highs in the mid 60’s, lows in the low 40’s, sunny.
Shasta (Daly City): Highs will rise this week: 59℉ on Thursday, 61℉ on Friday, 60℉ on Saturday, 63℉ on Sunday, 62℉ on Monday, 63℉ on Tuesday and 67℉ on Wednesday. Lows will also rise this week: 43℉ on Thursday and Friday, 45℉ on Saturday, 44℉ on Sunday and Monday, 48℉ on Tuesday and 50℉ on Wednesday. It will be a sunny week with some clouds.
Summary: Highs in the low 60’s, lows in the mid 40’s, sunny.
Tahoma (San Jose): Highs will rise this week: 65℉ on Thursday, 66℉ on Friday, 67℉ on Saturday, 70℉ on Sunday, 71℉ on Monday, 70℉ on Tuesday and 72℉ on Wednesday. Lows will also rise this week: 39℉ on Thursday and Friday, 40℉ on Saturday, 42℉ on Sunday and Monday, 44℉ on Tuesday and 46℉ on Wednesday. It will be a sunny week with some clouds.
Summary: Highs in the upper 60’s, lows in the low 40’s, sunny.
Cooking: Pesto Penne Pasta
By Sam Hu on Ahead of Thyme
- Penne pasta – or substitute with your favourite kind of pasta.
- Basil pesto
- Cherry tomatoes
- Parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper
- Make the penne pasta. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add penne pasta and a little bit salt, and cook till al dente (fully cooked but still firm) about 8-10 minutes, or according to package directions. Do not overcook the pasta. Turn off the heat and reserve at least ¼ cup of pasta water, then drain the pasta in a colander and let it cool for 1 minute.
- Toss in pesto. Transfer pasta into a large mixing bowl and add pesto and reserved pasta water (¼ cup or more, if desired). Season with salt and pepper and toss well to coat. Stir in cherry tomatoes and parmesan cheese.
- Serve. Serve immediately. Sprinkle extra parmesan on top, if desired
Editor’s note: The “Actions” section includes petitions to sign, prompts and scripts to write officials with as well as other opportunities to engage in your local, national and global communities.\
In light of Black History Month and the disgusting threats that have been thrown at the black community as reported in “General News”, here are some ways to help social justice movements such as Black Lives Matter.
- Educate yourself on different racial injustices that have happened in recent times and be aware of what is going on in your country, not ignorant
- Buy merchandise from organizations like Black Lives Matter as a way to provide monetary aid and to show your support!
- Co-sign Black Lives Matter’s seven demands for justice reform
And, as always:
- Watch or listen or listen to this playlist. All advertisement revenue goes to Black Lives Matter. Do not skip the ads, the donations will not go through otherwise.