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Task Force To Study And Develop Reparation Proposals For African Americans Votes On Reparations For Black Californians 

This Saturday, the Task Force to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African Americans held its 15th public meeting in Oakland, California. The panel was created to consider reparations for Black residents in California, and throughout the nation. 

According to Kamilah Moore, who’s on the chair of the panel, the group voted over the weekend to approve recommendations for the payments of reparations to Black Californians for injustices and discrimination that stems back to slavery. 

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The specific recommendations will be discussed and presented at the task force’s next meeting before it goes on to be presented to the Legislature by July 1st. The recommendations could cost the state billions of dollars in its outlined restitutions. 

The task force specifically outlined the reparations they are attempting to gain, as reported by CNN, which includes: 

  • “Estimated value of payment for health care disparities: $13,619 for each year of residency, based on 71-year life expectancy.
  • Estimated payment for housing discrimination: $148,099 or $3,366 for each year between 1933 and 1977 spent as a resident of the state.
  • Estimated payment for mass incarceration and over policing: $115,260 or $2,352 for each year of residency in California during the 49-year period between 1971 and 2020.”

The task force has also previously called for a state office to process the reparation claims as a means of “identifying and mitigating the ways that current and previous policies have damaged and destabilized Black families.”

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Additionally, the task force has overall goals of restoring historical sites, supporting educational funding/resource building, as well as offering free legal aid and other services to those who need it but may not be able to afford it. 

Other goals include updating the language used in the state’s Constitution, removing any racial bias and discriminatory practices in standardized testing, compensating individuals who were deprived of profits through their work, investing in free healthcare programs, and delivering apologies for acts of political disenfranchisement. 

According to the US Census Bureau, California has a Black population of 2.5 million people. It’s currently unclear how the Legislature would put some, or all, of these recommendations in place, however, the future meetings of the task force will likely outline those steps. 

The task force’s next meeting is set to be held on June 29th in Sacramento so the group can finalize any changes to the recommendations before presenting it to the Legislature.

NATO Russian Flags

NATO Chief Says Ukraine Can Win War With Russia After Finland And Sweden Military Alliance

Ukrainian forces have been able to push back the Russian military around Kharkiv as a part of their counter offense that has caused Russian troops to withdraw from the nation’s second-largest city. 

NATO’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg made a statement on Sunday stating that “Ukraine can win this war” following the news that Finland was applying to join the military alliance. This is a historic move, as Finland traditionally remains neutral. 

Sweden’s President Sauli Niinisto said that “joining the military alliance will maximize Finland’s security after Russia’s unprecedented invasion of Ukraine in February.” 

Sweden is also expected to apply to join NATO, which is likely going to make tensions worse with Russia, who warned last week that it would be taking “retaliatory steps” should Finland join the military alliance. 

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Additionally, Ukraine President Volodymyr Selenskyy took to Twitter to discuss his conversations with International Monetary Fund Director Kristalina Georgieva about receiving financial support for his country. 

Zelenskyy wrote that he and Georgieva “discussed the need for financial support for the Ukrainian economy,” and that they were looking forward to the “further fruitful joint work in maintaining financial stability of Ukraine.” 

Back in April Zelenskyy and Georgieva discussed Ukraine’s economic stability and preparations for post-war reconstruction. 

In a reply to a tweet from Zelenskyy in April, Georgieva said that “continued economic support by Ukraine’s partners is essential to lay the foundations for rebuilding a modern competitive Ukraine.”

In the US, the Lockheed Martin Corporation, one of the nation’s biggest security and aerospace companies, was awarded two contracts worth $309 million for its Javelin missiles. These missiles are anti tank weapons that have helped Ukraine in their fight against Russian invaders. 

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Demand for these missiles has remained high throughout the entire war, but have seen an increase in demand as conditions worsen in Ukraine. The missiles have so far been used to stop Russian tanks from advancing on the capital.

The US has sent more than 5,500 Javelin systems to Ukraine. State Department Counselor Derek Chollet will be leading a delegation group to Moldova, Georgia, and the United Kingdom as a means of furthering their collaborative efforts to help Ukraine. 

Moldova is one of the most vulnerable countries when it comes to the war with Russia. Chollet is planning to meet with government officials in the nation to “reinforce US support for Moldova’s democracy, prosperity, and security.” 

“Chollet will then head to Georgia, where he will meet with government, opposition, and civil society representatives for discussions on Russia’s continuing occupation of parts of Georgia, on the Kremlin’s brutal war against Ukraine, and on how to advance the people of Georgia’s aspirations for a democratic, peaceful, prosperous, and Euro-Atlantic future,” according to the state department.

Chollet will then travel to the UK to discuss the countries’ response to the war in Ukraine and other global security concerns.

Apple Store

What To Expect From Apple’s Virtual Event And How To Watch

The day is finally here, after weeks of production delays brought on by the pandemic, Apple is projected to release their new line of iPhone’s along with a whole slew of other products today, October 13th, during a virtual event that will begin at 10 a.m. Pacific Time

In terms of the iPhone 12 and other predictions for what’s to be revealed today, it’s important to note that so far these are all just predictions, however, many of them are based on professional tech blogs and workers who have made correct predictions in the past about the iPhone’s we’ve already seen on the market. 

The iPhone 12 is likely to be the first major revamp of the phone’s physical design since 2017, when Apple revealed the iPhone X which no longer had a home button and used facial recognition technology to unlock the device. Analyst Daniel Ives wrote in a note to investors that this event will be a “once in a decade” moment for the tech giant. 

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“We believe iPhone 12 represents the most significant product cycle for Apple since iPhone 6 in 2014, and it will be another defining chapter in the Apple growth story looking ahead despite a softer consumer spending environment.”

The theme of this year’s event is “speed,” which could mean a variety of things, however, the biggest prediction based on the theme itself is that the next iPhone will have 5G capabilities, a faster chipset, faster display refresh rate, and more! Some individuals also believe that the new line of iPhones will have fingerprint unlocking capabilities through the power or volume buttons, for those who opt not to use the facial recognition feature.

Specifically, Apple is projected to launch the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 Pro Max. The Mini is expected to have a 5.4 inch display and will be available in the standard 64 GB, 128 GB, and 256 GB models. 

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The standard iPhone 12 will feature a 6.1 inch display and have the same storage capacity options as the mini. The iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max will have a 6.2 inch display and their storage configuration will likely begin at 128 GB based on past Pro Max iPhone models. The iPhone 12 series is set to begin pricing at $699 with the Mini and will likely go up to $1099 for the Pro models. 

The iPhone 12 series isn’t the only thing fans are looking forward to being announced this afternoon. It’s predicted that Apple will also be releasing over-ear wireless headphones called Airpods Studio, as well as a potential upgrade to HomePod speakers as well. 

Apple might also finally give consumers AirTags, which is something they’ve been teasing for quite some time now. Airtags would work as a GPS tracking service for things like your keys, phone, laptop, or anything else you find yourself consistently using. With the help of Bluetooth technology, one can just log onto any of their devices and track down whatever object they’re looking for that they’ve tagged. 

The Apple event is online-only today due to the Covid-19 pandemic, however, this also means anyone can watch it. Normally, patrons would have to wait until after the event to see all the products launched, but now, customers can simply go onto Apple’s Website at 10 a.m. PT, which is 1 p.m. ET, 6 p.m. BST and 4 a.m. AEDT on Oct. 14.