Historic Milestone at the 2020 Oscars + More News

by Debra Brown

2020 Oscars

Each Wednesday, we recap the most important headlines from our global community to keep you up to speed on world news. 


Historic Milestone at the 2020 Oscars

South Korea’s Parasite made history at the 2020 Oscars to become the first film not in the English language to take home best picture in the 92-year history of the Academy Awards. Bong Joon Ho’s satire of inequality took Hollywood’s top prize at the Oscars, along with awards for best director, best international film and best screenplay. 

Parasite has already won many awards including the top prize at the Cannes Film Festival last year.

New Zealand-born Taika Waititi also made history at the 2020 Oscars taking home the Oscar for Adapted Screenplay for Jojo Rabbit, becoming the first person of Maori descent to win an Oscar. He’s also the first person of indigenous descent to be nominated in the Adapted Screenplay category, making him by default the first person of indigenous descent to win in the category.


New Life For the Equal Rights Amendment + More News 

The United States House of Representatives is expected to vote this week on whether to remove the ratification deadline for the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), which would grant equal rights to all US citizens regardless of sex. 

Congress imposed a deadline when it first proposed the amendment in 1972. But the deadline expired nearly four decades ago after only 35 states had agreed to the amendment. Constitutional amendments must be ratified by at least 38 states.

Democrats in the House now plan to approve a resolution that would remove the deadline altogether. The Republican-led US Senate would have to agree. 

Advocates for gender equality in the US have been pushing for an amendment to the US Constitution that would provide for equal rights between men and women for nearly a century. The ERA would provide a fundamental legal remedy against gender discrimination for both women and men, according to the Alice Paul Institute, a non-profit group dedicated to ratifying the ERA. The case is likely to go to the US Supreme Court.


Bernie Sanders Wins the New Hampshire Primary 

Senator Bernie Sanders narrowly won the New Hampshire primary. Mr. Sanders had about 26 percent of the vote with 90 percent of the ballots counted, while former Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., was a close second. Mr. Buttigieg split the centrist vote with Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, who finished in third. Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, finished fourth in her neighboring state and former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. finished fifth. 

Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado and the entrepreneur Andrew Yang dropped out after poor showings. The 2020 South Carolina Democratic primary will be the fourth nominating contest in the Democratic Party presidential primaries for the 2020 presidential election, following the Nevada caucuses.


The Department of Justice Overrules Sentencing Request of Roger Stone

The Justice Department’s decided to water down a recommendation by its own prosecutors for Roger Stone to serve seven to nine years in prison for lying to Congress and witness tampering during the Russia investigation.

All four federal prosecutors who took the case against longtime Donald Trump confidant Roger Stone to trial withdrew after top Justice Department officials undercut them and disavowed the government’s recommended sentence against Stone.

Donald Trump denied he had asked the Justice Department to lower the sentencing recommendations concerning Stone but he said that the idea that his longtime friend and fixer should spend up to nine years in prison was ridiculous and attacked the federal prosecutors who conducted the case.


First 24 Hour Black Cable News Network Launches

The Black News Channel, the first 24-hour news channel aimed specifically at an African American audience, launches coinciding with black history month. 

Founded by former Rep. J.C. Watts, a Republican from Oklahoma, the network will premiere in 33 million households primarily in large African American markets such as New York City, Los Angeles and Atlanta.

BNC programming will feature all-black on-air talent like former libertarian radio host Larry Elder and will pull from historically black colleges and universities for much of its on-air expertise, according to Watts. The network will not be entirely black-run or owned, though: CEO Bob Brillante and COO Jim Zerwekh are both white.

Watts said the network will provide reliable and accurate nonpartisan coverage of issues that are often neglected by mainstream media outlets, like mass incarceration, but said it would also cover other areas from a black perspective, such as health and wellness.


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