News and Headlines. 11/18/2019

News and Headlines: In The news, Politics, World News, Commentary/Opinion.

In The News:

Chick-fil-A will no longer donate to anti-LGBTQ organizations

The fast food chain announced Monday that beginning next year it will only donate to a certain group of charities.

That list no longer includes the Salvation Army and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA). Both organizations have taken controversial stands on homosexuality and same-sex marriage.

Going forward, Chick-fil-A said it will work exclusively with organizations that focus on education, homelessness and hunger. Those are Junior Achievement USA, Covenant House International and donating $25,000 local food banks.

Nine dead after California sees three mass shootings in four days

Mourners gather at a vigil in Santa Clarita. Photograph: Apu Gomes/Getty Images

Nine people were killed in three mass shootings in California in just four days, marking a particularly brutal wave of gun violence incidents in the state.

In the San Diego murder-suicide, police said the mother was in the middle of a divorce with the shooter and that she had sought a restraining order a day before the tragedy.

In Fresno the following day, roughly 35 people were gathered in a backyard watching a football game when someone opened fire.

The suspect or suspects fled the scene, and investigators are working to determine the reason behind the killings.

7 Milwaukee Popeyes employees fired after chaotic brawl caught on camera

“I heard one of them yell, ‘It’s a fight,'” Fourté said. “They ran to the back by the grills, OK. Now, there was a fight back there. I didn’t get that one on tape.”

Fourté did, however, capture the second round of the vicious altercation on film moments later.

In the footage, male and female Popeyes workers were caught slapping, punching and whacking each other in a frenzied, expletive-laden melee.

One employee was pushed to the ground, while another was seen hopping over the counter to enter the fray.

At least 3 dead in Oklahoma Walmart shooting

Local police were called just before 10 a.m. CST when a suspect wearing all-black clothing opened fire, killing two men and a woman, Oklahoma State Patrol told local KOCO 5 News.

“We have three individuals that are deceased. We have two white males and a white female,” Duncan Police Chief Danny Ford told BNO News.

“Two of the victims are inside a vehicle, one is outside the vehicle. And at this point that’s about all we do know.”

Some reports have indicated the suspect is also deceased, but official confirmation has not yet been released.

A lockdown was in place for area schools, but was later confirmed to be lifted.

WARNING: Some of the video in the feed below is not suitable for all viewers.

Three dead after shooting at Oklahoma Walmart, authorities say

The shooting took place just before 10 a.m., reported the Duncan Banner. Officers with the Duncan Police Department responded to the Walmart Supercenter on Highway 81 in Duncan, a city 65 miles southwest of Oklahoma City.

A man and woman were found dead inside a car in the parking lot, and another man was found dead outside the car, police said in the statement.

It was not immediately clear if the alleged shooter was among those who died. A handgun was found at the scene, authorities said. The Duncan Banner reported that Red River Technology Center and Duncan Public Schools were put on lock down.

A Swarm of 800 Drones Create a Giant Airplane in the Sky

XinhuaVideo screen grab

Attendees to this year’s Nanchang Flight Convention bore witness to 800 drones that came together to create a giant airplane, among other things, in the sky.

The show in and of itself is designed to wow visitors with state of the art aviation, space travel and drone technology. But this took it to the next level.

The drones kicked off the air show creating a propeller plane, that morphed into a giant airplane.

The drones also formed a helicopter and what appeared to be a spacecraft.


Indiana mayor Dennis Tyler arrested by FBI in City Hall corruption probe

Muncie Mayor Dennis Tyler (City of Muncie)

Muncie, Ind., Mayor Dennis Tyler — a Democrat nearing the end of his second term in office — was arrested Monday by the FBI as part of a sprawling public corruption probe that has snared several officials in his administration.

FBI Indiana spokeswoman Chris Bavender told Fox News Tyler was arrested at his home at 7:30 a.m. local time.

“I can confirm an arrest warrant was executed at the home of Mayor Dennis Tyler this morning and he is currently in custody,” she said.


After Florida county becomes ‘2nd Amendment sanctuary,’ others in state want to follow suit

Elected officials in Wakulla, Sarasota and Clay counties said they also want to protect the Second Amendment in their regions and want to propose a law that would let people keep their guns.

It would mimic Lake County’s resolution, approved Nov. 5, that officials there say stands behind the Second Amendment.

The resolution in Lake County, which is near Orlando, passed the county commission with a unanimous 4-0 vote.

It states that the federal government “cannot compel law enforcement officers to enforce federal laws as it would increase the power of the federal government far beyond that which the constitution intended.”

Navy SEAL Rob O’Neill slams Biden for attacking Trump’s military pardons

Commentary/Opinion: O’Neill countered Biden’s criticism of the controversial pardons by accusing Biden of saying “no” to carrying out the Bin Laden raid and then disclosed the otherwise secretive actions of SEAL Team Six.

According to prior Washington Examiner reporting some family members of slain SEAL Team Six members believe the disclosure of their involvement in the Bin Laden raid likely put them at risk of targeting and contributed to several of the team’s members being shot down and killed in a later operation.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper reportedly urged Trump not to intervene in the military justice system but Trump proceeded with the controversial decision.

In his announcement of the decision, Trump said he wanted U.S. service members overseas to have the confidence to fight with the support of leaders back home.

White House official sues Politico for $25M over Ukraine story

White House official Kash Patel, the National Security Council’s senior counterterrorism director, is seeking more than $25 million in damages from Politico and one of its reporters, John Roberts and Howie Kurtz report.

Michigan Lawmakers Overturn a Bad Regulation Restricting Access to Cancer Treatments

Illustration of CAR (chimeric antigen receptor) T cell immunotherapy, a process that is being developed to treat cancer.
Illustration of CAR (chimeric antigen receptor) T cell immunotherapy, a process that is being developed to treat cancer. T cells (blue), part of the body’s immune system, are taken from the patient and have their DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) modified by viruses (spiky spheres) so that they produce chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) proteins. These proteins will be specific to the patient’s cancer. The modified T cells are then multiplied in the laboratory before being reintroduced to the patient.

But its near-adoption stands as a warning about how hospitals can use the government to protect profits at the expense of patients.

Under the rules passed by the state commission, hospitals wanting to offer CAR T-cell treatments and other, similar therapies would have had to obtain additional third-party certifications.

The additional certifications would have effectively prohibited many smaller hospitals and clinics from offering this potentially revolutionary treatment.

“The attempt to regulate promising new cancer treatment in Michigan proves how easy it is for a Certificate of Need board to extend political power at the expense of patients,” says Anna Parsons, a policy coordinator with the American Legislative Exchange Council.

Supreme Court temporarily blocks release of Trump tax returns

Chief Justice John Roberts issued the order Monday, calling for a stay on a ruling from the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals that allowed for the House Oversight Committee to obtain the information from accounting firm Mazars USA. Roberts put the ruling on hold after Trump filed an application with the high court.

The Supreme Court is next scheduled to meet on Friday and may discuss the case then.

Trump has also filed a similar request in a separate case in which New York prosecutors have subpoenaed his tax returns from Mazars USA, after a lower court ruling said it could be enforced.


Pete Buttigieg says he’s open to sending US troops to Mexico

Mayor Pete Buttigieg speaking with attendees at the 2019 Iowa Federation of Labor Convention hosted by the AFL-CIO at the Prairie Meadows Hotel in Altoona, Iowa. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Buttigieg’s comments came in response to a question at an event hosted by ABC7 Eyewitness News, where he added he would work to “make drug trafficking less profitable by walking away from the failed war on drugs here in the United States.”

Buttigieg’s appearance in Los Angeles came on the tail end of a weekend trip across Southern California, during which he attended the state Democratic Party’s convention in Long Beach and participated in a separate forum about Latino issues hosted by Univision.

Since announcing his 2020 bid for president, the South Bend, Indiana, mayor has campaigned heavily in the Golden State, making more than 50 appearances — the most of any Democratic presidential contender.

He and Castro were joined at the ABC7 event by California Sen. Kamala Harris, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and billionaire California activist Tom Steyer.

Swamp Watch: Cash for Gas

Commentary/Opinion: The real scandal being covered up by the impeachment inquiry is Hunter Biden’s Ukraine gas scandal.

D.C. residents react to Week One of open impeachment hearings

Commentary/Opinion: After the first week of open impeachment hearings concluded, One America’s Stefan Kleinhenz took to the streets of Washington D.C. to find out how people felt about the proceedings.

Here’s more.

World News:

China sends its first domestically built aircraft carrier through Taiwan Strait

Type 002 aircraft carrier of People's Liberation Army (Tyg728/WikiCommons)
Type 002 aircraft carrier of People’s Liberation Army (Tyg728/WikiCommons)

China sent its second aircraft carrier, the first to be built domestically, through the Taiwan Strait on Sunday, the Defense Ministry in Taipei said, with the carrier group shadowed by U.S. and Japanese naval vessels.

The carrier, known as the Type 002 and accompanied by a battle group, sailed through the waterway from the East China Sea into the strait, the ministry said.

It said the Taiwanese military scrambled fighter jets in response and monitored the situation.

Beijing has called Taiwan “the most important and sensitive issue in China-U.S. relations” and has bolstered its military presence near the island, holding large-scale “encirclement” exercises and bomber training throughout last year and into this year.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Navy sent a warship through the waterway for the first time since September, with the Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture-based guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville conducting “a routine Taiwan Strait transit,” the navy said in a statement.

Iran continuing construction on army base along Iraq-Syria border, images show

The Imam Ali base had been partially destroyed during airstrikes in early September.

The new images, examined by analysts at ImageSat International (ISI), showed eight zones of construction or reconstruction.

Each zone had hangers big enough to conceal trucks and large quantities of equipment. There also was a checkpoint on both sides of the compound with fortified walls around the complex.


Hong Kong showdown: Protesters close in on trapped allies as police try to clear occupied university

Police in riot gear move through a cloud of smoke as they detain a protester at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in Hong Kong, on Monday.
Police in riot gear move through a cloud of smoke as they detain a protester at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in Hong Kong, on Monday. (AP)

The university is currently surrounded by police and has been occupied for days by demonstrators rallying against the territory’s government and Beijing. Police are looking to take around 200 people there into custody – but their advances have been rebuffed by a sharp escalation in violence by the protesters, who are trying to keep the pressure on Hong Kong leaders that have rejected most of their demands.

Riot officers broke in one entrance before dawn as fires raged inside and outside the school, but they didn’t appear to get very far.

Fiery explosions could be seen as protesters responded with gasoline bombs. Police, who have warned that everyone in the area could be charged with rioting, reportedly made a handful of arrested.

US says Israeli settlements are no longer illegal

Israel’s prime minister has vowed never to remove settlements again AFP

In 1978, the Carter administration concluded that the establishment of civilian settlements was inconsistent with international law, although in 1981 President Reagan disagreed with that conclusion, saying he didn’t believe the settlements were inherently illegal.

For decades, the US described the settlements as “illegitimate”, refraining from calling them “illegal” and sheltering Israel from condemnatory resolutions on the issue at the United Nations.

However one of the last acts of the Obama administration, at the end of 2016, was to refrain from usual US practice by not vetoing a UN resolution that urged an end to illegal Israeli settlements.

President Donald Trump’s administration has displayed a much more tolerant attitude towards settlement activity than his predecessor, Barack Obama.

Mr Pompeo said the Trump administration had studied all sides of the debate and agreed with President Reagan, adding: “The establishment of Israeli civilians settlements in the West Bank is not per se in consistent with international law.”


“I Don’t Think We’ve Had Any [Constitutional] Crises in My Lifetime”: Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg

The legendary jurist and champion of “originalism” who withdrew his name from Supreme Court consideration weighs in on Donald Trump’s impeachment, Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch, and his upcoming PBS series on the Constitution.

How Big Government Hurts Women

Government-mandated employee perks might sound like a good way to help out working women, but, in reality, these programs do more harm than good.

European women are already paying the price, and American women might be next.

Carrie Lukas, President of Independent Women’s Forum, explains how keeping the government out of the workplace goes a long way toward keeping women in it.