Rachel Blevins–The name “Michelle Wolf” has dominated headlines and has become the talk of the mainstream media following the comedian’s speech roasting the Trump Administration at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner on Saturday. While everyone seems to have an opinion on Wolf’s comments, the fact is that the debate has served as the perfect distraction from several incredibly important news stories from the around the world.
Here are five stories you may have missed while the media was obsessing over Michelle Wolf’s speech:
1. Military-industrial complex stocks crashed in response to a historic peace deal between North and South Korea
The leaders of North and South Korea reached a historic peace deal this week when they met in person for the first time and agreed to pursue an end to the Korean War. It signaled an incredible breakthrough in diplomacy that also sent the stocks of defense contractors in the United States crashing.
The same stocks that skyrocketed after Trump vowed to meet North Korea with “fire and fury like the world has never seen” in August 2017, fell significantly at the prospect of peace in Korea. Following the meeting, the five largest defense contractors in the U.S. lost more than $10 billion in value. Lockheed Martin (LMT) fell 2.5 percent, Northrop Grumman (NOC) fell 3.4 percent, General Dynamics (GD) fell 3.8 percent, and Boeing (BA) fell less than 1 percent.
2. The same people who begged for universal healthcare to save dying babies stayed silent as the UK government killed Baby Alfie
Alfie Evans, a 23-month-old boy with a rare degenerative neurological condition, died this weekend after he was taken off life support and he survived for more than four days without food or water, following orders from the UK government to end his life. Despite the fact that his family appealed every court decision, and even obtained Italian citizenship for Alfie so that they could secure extended treatment, he was still sentenced to die.
Unfortunately, this system is championed by many who claim that government should be in charge of medicine. For example, talk show host, Jimmy Kimmel delivered an emotional monologue last year about his new son, who was born with severe heart defects requiring emergency surgery. He used his experience to urge Americans to support state-run healthcare, yet he remained eerily silent when the same system he promoted was responsible for the death of Baby Alfie.
3. The police officers responsible for breaking into an innocent man’s home and shocking him with a Taser 18 times while he was in the shower, will face no charges for his death.
Officers Michael Rohleder and Anthony Munoz reportedly responded to a 911 call about a disturbance, and when they arrived at the location, they broke into the apartment and found Adam Trammell, 22, taking a shower. Trammell suffered from schizophrenia, and when police ripped open the shower curtain and started calling him “Brandon,” he did not answer right away because that was not his name and he was confused.
The officers responded by shocking Trammell with a Taser at least 18 times while he lay naked and helpless on the floor of his shower. He spent his last moments of consciousness in agonizing pain while vomiting profusely before his body went into distress and he died.
Not only did the officers not face charges, but the district attorney claimed there was “no basis to conclusively link” the death of Trammell to the officers’ actions.
Warning, the video below is extremely graphic.
4. Israeli soldiers executed three Palestinians in one day for the crime of standing too close to the Gaza border fence
Nearly 50 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli Defense Forces in the last six weeks, according to statistics from the Gaza Ministry of Health. That number increased by three in just one day when three men were shot and killed in two separate incidents on Sunday.
The three men were among many who have been killed by the IDF soldiers who later claimed that they opened fire because the suspects “attempted to infiltrate” the Israel-Gaza border. However, a video was leaked earlier this month that showed multiple Israeli men celebrating after a sniper targeted and shot a non-threatening man who was standing in a field on the other side of their border fence.
5. Seattle has become the latest city to give a second chance to citizens who have been convicted of marijuana possession by clearing their criminal convictions
Washington became one of the first states to legalize recreational marijuana in 2012, and the city of Seattle is now working to give its citizens a second chance by clearing decades of marijuana possession convictions.
Officials filed a motion in municipal court that will vacate—retroactively void—all misdemeanor marijuana convictions in the city. In a statement, Mayor Jenny Durkan said the request would affect 542 people, and that she sees this move as an “important step to right the wrongs [of] the failed war on drugs.”
Cannabis legalization in California also brought about the hope that as many as nearly half a million people who have been labeled as felons for possessing a plant, could also have their cannabis convictions cleared.