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Missouri’s state house voted against prohibiting children from open-carrying firearms unless under adult supervision. 

A Norfolk Southern Corporation train carrying hazardous chemicals derailed after an axle malfunction in East Palestine, Ohio.1 The 50-car train, which had been on fire for miles before it ran aground, produced clouds of noxious fumes that led to the evacuation of nearly 5,000 people, some of whom were extras in the film adaptation of White Noise, and the deaths of domestic and wild animals in the area.2 3 4 5 Norfolk Southern, which has paid its executives millions, spent billions on stock buybacks, and declined a shareholder demand to “assess, review, and mitigate risks of hazardous material transportation,” agreed to pay the city of East Palestine $25,000.6 7 8 Aid and rescue workers could not immediately reach victims of the 7.8-magnitude earthquake and its aftershocks, some of which were nearly as big as the first quake, in Syria because of sanctions against the country, which were suspended by the U.S. government days after the disaster; more than 37,000 people across Turkey and Syria have died and tens of thousands have been injured by the quakes.9 10 11 12 Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdo?an—who came to power over 20 years ago after a previous administration’s mishandling of an earthquake response, and has himself been criticized for slow rescue efforts as he faces an election in three months—announced that he would allocate more than $5.3 billion to relief.13 14 “It’s an issue that will take a coalition to solve,” said Microsoft, a computer manufacturer and software company worth $1.9 trillion, in response to a report outlining changes to small-scale cobalt mining in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is plagued by fatal cave-ins and child labor.15 16 Thirty-three members of Congress pushed for the U.S. Labor secretary to punish automotive companies whose Alabama factories have been employing children as young as 12, while lawmakers in Iowa and Minnesota have introduced legislation to allow minors as young as 14 to work in slaughterhouses, demolition, roofing, and other jobs that require the operation of heavy machinery.17 18 19 Missouri’s state house voted against prohibiting children from open-carrying firearms unless under adult supervision.20

Attorneys for Richard “Alex” Murdaugh, the third consecutive member of his family to serve as South Carolina Lowcountry solicitor, who is accused of murdering his wife, Maggie, and youngest son, Paul (who was implicated in the death of Mallory Beach in a drunken boating accident) and of diverting millions of dollars in damages-settlement money intended for his clients and their families, including the sons of the family’s maid, who died in a trip-and-fall accident at one of the Murdaughs’ residences, to a bank account he controlled, moved for a mistrial over hearsay, but were denied.21 22 23 24 25 The majority-white, Republican Mississippi House approved a bill that will create a new district court in the majority-black, Democratic city of Jacksonville, whose judges will be appointed rather than elected, and the mayor of Fort Worth, Texas, said she supported the police chief’s proposed community oversight board, whose members he would select.26 27 “People are scared, upset, & are believing crazy things being said on the internet,” tweeted Marjorie Taylor Greene, who carried a white balloon around the Capitol the day of the State of the Union address, as she questioned the timing of three downed unidentified aircraft over North America: “[T]here is a lack of transparency from the Biden admin and simple explanations are owed to the people.”28 29 30 The White House denied the existence of aliens and a report that the United States had blown up the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.31 32 A farmer advocacy organization said that record-high egg prices are being caused by collusion among egg producers, who are exaggerating the effects of avian flu on their industry, and the McDonald’s corporation agreed to remove an advertisement for its McCrispy sandwich inside a bus shelter in Cornwall that is opposite a road sign for the area’s crematorium.33 34

A decade-long study revealed that instant noodles were responsible for nearly a third of all hospital cases of scalded children.35 Scientists found that female orcas who support their sons into adulthood suffer.36 Eighty-one bales of cocaine, weighing three and a half tons in total, were discovered floating off the coast of New Zealand.37 Members of Oregon’s liquor and cannabis commission were found to have abused their power in order to receive bottles of Pappy Van Winkle’s 23-year-old whiskey.38 A 24-year-old man who abducted monkeys from the Dallas Zoo to keep as pets told police he would do it again, and a Nashville man resisted arrest by thrusting his cat into an officer’s face.39 40 A robot escaped a Pennsylvania supermarket.41 King Charles III wore a holey sock to an appearance at a Brick Lane mosque.42Violet Lucca

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