Weekly Review — September 13, 2016, 4:37 pm

Weekly Review

Russian forces launch airstrikes in Syria, Hillary Clinton gets pneumonia, and a woman in Oklahoma marries her daughter

HarpersMagazine-1853-12-bootsIn Syria, Russian forces launched air strikes against rebel-held targets in the cities of Idlib and Aleppo, killing more than 90 people, and a nationwide ceasefire began, brokered by the United States and Russia and supported by the Syrian government. “We welcome the deal,” said an opposition spokesperson, “if it is going to be enforced.”[1][2][3] Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson apologized for asking “What is Aleppo?” during a television interview about his foreign-policy agenda.[4] Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein was charged with criminal trespass and criminal mischief for spray-painting a bulldozer at a protest against the construction of an oil pipeline in North Dakota.[5] Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was diagnosed with pneumonia, and days later left an event commemorating the fifteenth anniversary of 9/11 because she felt overheated. “Why are you so sick?” shouted Martin Shkreli, the former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, who last year raised the price of the antiparasitic drug Daraprim by 5,500 percent.[6][7][8]

John Hinckley, Jr., the man who shot President Ronald Reagan to impress Jodi Foster, was released from a psychiatric hospital in Washington, D.C., and French officials charged a 29-year-old woman with being involved in a foiled terrorist attack near Paris’s Notre Dame cathedral.[9][10] Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte apologized for using the Tagalog term putang ina, which roughly translates as “son of a bitch,” in an apparent reference to U.S. president Barack Obama.[11] A Dutch legislator wearing a Palestinian flag on his lapel refused to shake the hand of Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a state visit to the Netherlands.[12] A 75-year-old woman in Germany caused 25,000 euros’ worth of damage by crashing her car into 14 parked vehicles, and a 24-year-old man in Austin overshot his parking spot and left his car dangling off the side of a parking garage.[13][14] A tractor-trailer crashed on I-95 in Delaware, spilling 8 million blank pennies; a tractor-trailer caught fire on I-68 in Maryland, burning bacon and ribs; and a new ATM in Ohio was dispensing pizzas rather than money.[15][16][17] New York mayor Bill de Blasio announced that 50,000 oysters were being distributed on beds made of porcelain from recycled toilets. [18] “This oyster bed,” said the mayor, “will serve multiple purposes.”[19]

Apple’s marketing chief said that the company’s decision to discontinue the headphone jack on its latest iPhone had taken “courage,” and the Consumer Product Safety Commission advised Galaxy Note 7 owners to stop using their smartphones, lest they explode.[20][21] A man in Kansas City, Missouri, thwarted an armed burglary by throwing his 30-pound television at the intruder; a 14-year-old boy in Salem, Oregon, used a power grinder to defend himself and his father from an intruder who was trying to bite their fingers and poke them with a screwdriver; and a 70-year-old man in Kansas City, Kansas, deliberately got himself arrested for bank robbery to avoid fixing the dryer for his wife.[22][23][24] Researchers in Germany found that giraffes fall into four separate species, which do not mate with one another in the wild.[25] A woman and her daughter were charged with incest after marrying in Oklahoma, and a series of clown sightings were reported in the Carolinas, including one incident in Greenville, South Carolina, where parents told police that a clown had attempted to lure their children into the forest. “The clowning around needs to stop,” said the police chief.[26][27][28][29]

Share
Single Page

More from Elettra Pauletto:

Weekly Review October 25, 2016, 12:22 pm

Weekly Review

Donald Trump vows to sue women who accuse him of sexual assault, a train derails in Cameroon, and the Cubs win the pennant

Get access to 169 years of
Harper’s for only $23.99

United States Canada

CATEGORIES

THE CURRENT ISSUE

October 2019

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

Article
Constitution in Crisis·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

America’s Constitution was once celebrated as a radical and successful blueprint for democratic governance, a model for fledgling republics across the world. But decades of political gridlock, electoral corruption, and dysfunction in our system of government have forced scholars, activists, and citizens to question the document’s ability to address the thorniest issues of modern ­political life.

Does the path out of our current era of stalemate, minority rule, and executive abuse require amending the Constitution? Do we need a new constitutional convention to rewrite the document and update it for the twenty-­first century? Should we abolish it entirely?

This spring, Harper’s Magazine invited five lawmakers and scholars to New York University’s law school to consider the constitutional crisis of the twenty-­first century. The event was moderated by Rosa Brooks, a law professor at Georgetown and the author of How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales from the Pentagon.

Article
Good Bad Bad Good·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

About fifteen years ago, my roommate and I developed a classification system for TV and movies. Each title was slotted into one of four categories: Good-Good; Bad-Good; Good-Bad; Bad-Bad. The first qualifier was qualitative, while the second represented a high-low binary, the title’s aspiration toward capital-A Art or lack thereof.

Some taxonomies were inarguable. The O.C., a Fox series about California rich kids and their beautiful swimming pools, was delightfully Good-Bad. Paul Haggis’s heavy-handed morality play, Crash, which won the Oscar for Best Picture, was gallingly Bad-Good. The films of Francois Truffaut, Good-Good; the CBS sitcom Two and a Half Men, Bad-Bad.

Article
Power of Attorney·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

In a Walmart parking lot in Portsmouth, Virginia, in 2015, a white police officer named Stephen Rankin shot and killed an unarmed, eighteen-­year-­old black man named William Chapman. “This is my second one,” he told a bystander seconds after firing the fatal shots, seemingly in reference to an incident four years earlier, when he had shot and killed another unarmed man, an immigrant from Kazakhstan. Rankin, a Navy veteran, had been arresting Chapman for shoplifting when, he claimed, Chapman charged him in a manner so threatening that he feared for his life, leaving him no option but to shoot to kill—­the standard and almost invariably successful defense for officers when called to account for shooting civilians. Rankin had faced no charges for his earlier killing, but this time, something unexpected happened: Rankin was indicted on a charge of first-­degree murder by Portsmouth’s newly elected chief prosecutor, thirty-­one-year-­old Stephanie Morales. Furthermore, she announced that she would try the case herself, the first time she had ever prosecuted a homicide. “No one could remember us having an actual prosecution for the killing of an unarmed person by the police,” Morales told me. “I got a lot of feedback, a lot of people saying, ‘You shouldn’t try this case. If you don’t win, it may affect your reelection. Let someone else do it.’ ”

Article
Carlitos in Charge·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

I was in Midtown, sitting by a dry fountain, making a list of all the men I’d slept with since my last checkup—doctor’s orders. Afterward, I would head downtown and wait for Quimby at the bar, where there were only alcoholics and the graveyard shift this early. I’d just left the United Nations after a Friday morning session—likely my last. The agenda had included resolutions about a worldwide ban on plastic bags, condemnation of a Slobodan Miloševic statue, sanctions on Israel, and a truth and reconciliation commission in El Salvador. Except for the proclamation opposing the war criminal’s marble replica, everything was thwarted by the United States and a small contingent of its allies. None of this should have surprised me. Some version of these outcomes had been repeating weekly since World War II.

Article
Life after Life·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

For time ylost, this know ye,
By no way may recovered be.
—Chaucer

I spent thirty-eight years in prison and have been a free man for just under two. After killing a man named Thomas Allen Fellowes in a drunken, drugged-up fistfight in 1980, when I was nineteen years old, I was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. Former California governor Jerry Brown commuted my sentence and I was released in 2017, five days before Christmas. The law in California, like in most states, grants the governor the right to alter sentences. After many years of advocating for the reformation of the prison system into one that encourages rehabilitation, I had my life restored to me.

Cost of renting a giant panda from the Chinese government, per day:

$1,500

A recent earthquake in Chile was found to have shifted the city of Concepción ten feet to the west, shortened Earth’s days by 1.26 microseconds, and shifted the planet’s axis by nearly three inches.

A group of researchers studying the Loch Ness Monster did not rule out the possibility of its existence, but speculated that it is possibly a giant eel.

Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!

HARPER’S FINEST

Happiness Is a Worn Gun

By

“Nowadays, most states let just about anybody who wants a concealed-handgun permit have one; in seventeen states, you don’t even have to be a resident. Nobody knows exactly how many Americans carry guns, because not all states release their numbers, and even if they did, not all permit holders carry all the time. But it’s safe to assume that as many as 6 million Americans are walking around with firearms under their clothes.”

Subscribe Today