Your Summit Weekly Briefing
By Jovani Contreras, Ethan Ignatovsky, Sean Quigley and Ashwath Vimal
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.
Content Warning: Mentions of explicit themes occur in the third section of “General News” and in “Actions”.
- It’s officially the start of Thanksgiving break! While you should all take time to relax, also be aware of any upcoming project deadlines, as the semester is also coming to a close. This especially goes for seniors, as grades need to be put in for your mid-year report that will be sent to any colleges you apply to. Speaking of deadlines, as we have been mentioning in many previous briefings, the race is almost over for UC applications, so make sure you get those in by, and preferably before, Nov. 30.
- Another reminder: Before anyone comes back to school after the break ends, make sure to complete a COVID test, especially if you went out of town for the week. While the pandemic has largely died down, surges are always still possible and can be easily avoided if the proper precautionary measures are taken.
- In recent developments, the world of cryptocurrency has quickly come crashing down after the new CEO of FTX shared a worrying address about the crypto exchange companies’ current state. “Never in my career have I seen such a complete failure of corporate controls and such a complete absence of trustworthy financial information as occurred here,” New CEO and restructuring manager John Ray stated in an address. Reports have shown that the company was poorly structured. It was revealed that the company had insufficient financial records, lackluster systems of communication, and didn’t even have a clear idea of who worked there. The exchange supposedly had a culture of not keeping records which have led to its demise. If you thought crypto was down bad, it has now fallen further as one of its biggest exchanges, and really a pillar of cryptocurrency crumbles before our eyes.
- Elizabeth Holmes, founder of Theranos has been sentenced to 11.25 years in prison, ending one of the biggest national court cases of our times. The Stanford dropout created a revolutionary blood testing company that took Silicon Valley by storm in the early 2000s. Theranos would soon become the center of attention after the now failed blood testing company began to collapse amidst accusations of scandal and fraud. In an address to the court, Holmes stated “Yesterday I tried to change the world. Today I’m wise, and want to change myself.” Theranos president and COO Sunny Balwani is set to have his own court date in the near future. He faces up to 20 years in prison.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association have urged President Biden to declare a state of emergency to support the national response to the “alarming surge of pediatric respiratory illnesses, including respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and influenza”. RSV is a relatively common virus, and isn’t usually a threat for adults in good health, but it can be deadly to the young and old. Children’s Hospital Association CEO, Mark Wietecha, said in a statement, “Our system is stretched to its limit and without immediate attention the crisis will worsen”. Some hospitals and emergency rooms have already had to set up tents outside their doors to help deal with this new crisis. The Children’s Hospital Association and American Academy of Pediatrics hope that the White House will give them the resources they need to keep the rise in cases under control.
- A new study shows that over a billion people worldwide between the ages of 12 and 35 are at risk of hearing loss due to exposure to loud noises. The study found that people in that age range usually listen to sounds on their devices at 105 decibels on average, well above the recommended exposure level of no more than 85 throughout a 40 hour week. Another factor is that entertainment venues typically are at around 104 to 112 decibels. Researchers said “Damage from unsafe listening can compound over the life course, and noise exposure earlier in life may make individuals more vulnerable to age-related hearing loss”. Side effects of hearing loss in young people can lead to reduced motivation and concentration. To prevent hearing loss the researchers recommend taking breaks from noise exposure, use protection such as foam ear plugs when in loud environments, create distance between yourself and the source of noise at events, and to keep your devices at a safe noise level.
- Former president Donald Trump launched a campaign to retake the white house in the 2024 election this Tuesday. Trump’s campaign comes two years after he was ousted from office by standing president Joe Biden. Trump announced his new campaign within the ball-room of his Mar-a-Lago resort. He was joined by family members and prominent political supporters like MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell and political operative Roger Stone. Trump’s speech included many grievances and conspiracies, such as that the FBI is corrupt and that the voting system was fraudulent. In his speech Trump vowed to repeal Biden’s initiatives to address climate change and immigration and credited himself with creating a strong economy. In 2020, Trump lost the presidential election to Joe Biden by around seven million votes. Trump however claimed that the election was fraudulent and that it was rigged in Biden’s favor. Trump did not directly speak about the 2020 election, choosing instead to allude to it by promising to reshape election laws including banning online ballots and not voting on election day. In his speech, Trump backed a 1994 proposed constitutional amendment that would limit congressional terms and called for the restoration of the platform he ran on during 2016 and 2020. Despite his return, Trump seems to not be as popular as he once was. High-ranking republican figures called for Trump to stand aside to let a new candidate run following a less than stellar performance in the 2022 midterm elections. Many of Trump-endorsed candidates in competitive races lost races that would have given the GOP power in the Senate. Florida governor Ron Desantis has also gained traction as a potential candidate for the 2024 election, posing a threat to Trump’s power within the party. If Trump were to beat Biden in the 2024 election, he would become the second president after Grover Cleveland to regain his office from the candidate who beat him. In the present, Trump faces criminal investigations for the Jan. 6 riot and for storing U.S. Government documents in Mar-a-Lago after he was president.
- MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred has announced that the Texas Rangers will be the host team for the 2024 MLB All-Star Game. The Rangers play their games at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas. The stadium opened in 2020 after construction started in late 2017. The stadium, though young, has already been involved in historic baseball moments such as when it served as the neutral ground for the unique 2020 World Series. The 2023 All Star Game will take place in Seattle at T-Mobile Park, where the Mariners play their home games.
- With the MLB off-season fully underway we have started to see some signings and trades. The first big move after last week was the Dodgers resigning franchise legend Clayton Kershaw to a one year contract worth around $17 million. Kershaw, 34, has struggled to stay healthy throughout the course of the season the past few years, but when he pitches he is still an extremely valuable arm. Five other Pitchers that signed contracts took advantage of breakout seasons, first time All-Star from last season Tyler Anderson left the Dodgers to go to the cross-freeway rival Angels on a 3 year deal around $39 million, while Rafeal Montero, Martin Perez, Robert Suarez, and Nick Martinez all decided to stay with the teams they had success with in 2020, the Houston Astros, Texas Rangers, and San Diego Padres respectively. The big bat moves so far have been Joc Pederson Returning to the San Francisco Giants after accepting the $19.65 Million qualifying offer, Anthony Rizzo returning to the New York Yankees on a 2 year contract worth $34 million, with a $6 million buyout for a 2025 option, and the Seattle Mariners acquiring righty slugger Teoscar Hernandez from the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for reliever Erik Swanson, and pitching prospect Adam Macko.
- It’s MLB award season which means we now know who the Baseball Writers’ Association of America has determined as award worthy. In the National League, Paul Goldschmidt took home his first career MVP award at age 35 after leading the league in OPS and OPS+, while Sandy Alcantara took home his first Cy Young after throwing 228.2 innings with a 2.28 ERA and league leading 6 complete games. New York Mets manager Buck Showalter picked up his fourth Manager of the Year award, becoming the first skipper to win the award in four separate decades and on four teams. Micheal Harris II won the NL Rookie of the Year award after an impressive and somewhat surprising year. In the American League Aaron Judge won his first career MVP after surpassing Roger Maris with 62 regular season AL home runs becoming the AL single season leader, and leading the league with an insane 211 OPS+. Justin Verlander won his third career AL Cy Young award, and Cleveland Guardians manager Terry Francona took home his third manager of the year award as well. Julio Rodriguez won the AL Rookie of the Year award, taking the league by storm in what looks to be just the first step of an impressive and exciting career.
- The NFL held it’s first ever regular season game in Germany last Sunday, when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers met the Seattle Seahawks at Allianz Arena in Munich. The game, which was won by the Bucs 21-16, seems to have been a great success for the growth of American Football internationally. Allianz arena sold out, and 2.7 million people tuned into the German broadcast of the game, helping it become the fourth most-watched game in NFL history, and DAZN Germany reported that it was the most watched NFL game on their platform. NFL Germany’s social media account also blew up over the festivities, seeing a 360% increase in video views with 20 million, a 717% increase in fan interactions with 3.4 million, and 30,000 new followers which is up 526% from the weekly average. The NFL is committed to Germany, they partnered with 21 bars in the Munich city center, and in the long term will be operating a flag football program in Munich as well as Düsseldorf, Berlin, Frankfurt, and Hamburg. There will be at least four NFL games taking place in Germany until 2025, and are also taking their international expansion to Mexico where the San Francisco 49ers will be playing the Arizona Cardinals this upcoming Monday at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.
- Los Angeles Rams star receiver Cooper Kupp underwent surgery to repair his high right ankle sprain on Wednesday. Kupp, the 2021-22 Offensive Player of the Year as well as last year’s Super Bowl MVP could be back later in the season as this surgery generally has a recovery time of five to six weeks, but Coach Sean McVay knows the team need to take the “appropriate steps” with Kupp following the procedure.
- The World Cup starts on Sunday with a group A matchup between Ecuador and the host country Qatar. Brazil is the odds on favorite to win the World Cup at +400, with Argentina and France trailing at +550 and +650. If Brazil manages to win it will be the country’s sixth World Cup victory, and their first since 2002. France, led by PSG star Kylian Mbappe, is looking to become the first country to repeat as champions since Brazil’s back to back wins in 1958 and 1962. Countries like Croatia are hoping to build off of impressive 2018 showings, and underdog countries like Denmark are looking to make a mark and shock the field. The Groups are as follows: Group A, Qatar, Ecuador, Senegal, Netherlands. Group B: England, Iran, United States, Wales. Group C: Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Poland. Group D: France, Australia, Denmark, Tunisia. Group E: Spain, Costa Rica, Germany, Japan. Group F: Belgium, Canada, Morocco, Croatia. Group G: Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, Cameroon. Group H: Portugal, Ghana, Uruguay, South Korea. The World Cup Final will take place on December 18.
- Pakistan has blocked the national release of the film Joyland one week before it hit theaters. The film was first shown in the Cannes Film Festival and revolved around the relationship between a man and transgender woman he meets after joining an erotic dance theater. The Pakistan’s Central Board of Film Censors gave the film a certificate to be released in theaters, but on Friday Pakistan’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting stated that it was now “uncertified.” The ministry stated that the film had received complaints and stated that it went against the “social values and moral standards” of Pakistan. The ministry stated that any cinemas that fell under the CBFC could not show the film. Joyland was submitted to the Oscars as Pakistan’s entry for the international feature film award. The film’s chance of winning may have been destroyed with its ban, as the film needed to be in theaters for at least seven days before Nov. 30 to be considered for an award. The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan claimed that the withdrawal of Joyland from theaters was transphobic and violated freedom of expression in a statement on Sunday. Salm Sadiq, the movie’s director, stated that the ban on the film was “absolutely unconstitutional” in a post on Instagram.
- Strange World Gabrielle Union stated that international bans on the film over its gay lead would be “denying reality.” Union spoke of the importance of multifaceted LGBTQ leads in an interview with Yahoo Entertainment along with her co-star Jaboukie Young-White who voices the character Ethan in the film. Union stated that Ethan’s identity as gay in the film “was always part of the DNA of the film” while still being only one characteristic of the character. Fellow animated titles produced by Disney such as Onward and Lightyear were banned in countries like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Russia for featuring queer characters in much smaller roles. Live action Disney films like West Side Story and The Eternals have also faced bans on similar grounds. Union stated that people from all over the world may want to see the film, which may encourage piracy. Young-White has stated that he is excited to see the impact of Ethan’s inclusion despite any international bans.
Cooking: Ratatouille Sheet Pan Dinner With Sausage
Total time: 50 minutes Yield: 6 servings
- 20 oz mild Italian sausage
- 1 small zucchini, ½” sliced
- 1 small yellow squash, ½” sliced
- 1 small eggplant, ½” sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced or smashed
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 tbsp fresh basil, minced
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme, minced
- Heat oven to 400°F.
- Place the onion, zucchini, yellow squash, eggplant, tomatoes and garlic on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with ½ cup olive oil, sprinkle with salt and fresh thyme. Toss until evenly coated.
- Nestle the sausages into the veggies. Bake for 40 minutes until the vegetables are very tender and the sausage is browned.
- Sprinkle with fresh basil.
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.
Contribute directly to “Doctors Without Borders” Staffers with the medical relief organization remain in Ukraine and are “seeking ways to respond to the medical and humanitarian needs as the conflict evolves.” Offer your support here.
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- Learn more about the crisis at www.monareliefye.org