In the News This Week

by Debra Brown


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


White Man Kills Black Girl, 7, in Drive By Shooting.

A 7 year old, Jazmine Barnes, was killed in Texas, the authorities said, when a gunman in a pickup truck pulled up alongside her family in their car and opened fire. Jazmine and her mother were shot as they were going to get coffee. Jazmine’s three other sisters were in the car with them.

The authorities describe the gunman as a white man in his 40s with a beard, wearing a red, hooded sweatshirt, and driving a red pickup truck. The authorities have not established a motive and could not discount the possibility of a hate crime.


Germany Becomes the First Country In the EU to Offer Third Gender Option On Birth Certificates.

Germany is the first country in the EU to offer a “third gender” option on birth certificates. Intersex people and parents of intersex babies will be able to register as “divers” or miscellaneous, on birth certificates, instead of having to choose between male and female. The court ruled that the current system, which “does not provide for a third option besides the entry ‘female’ or ‘male,’” is unconstitutional.

Between 0.5% and 1.7% of the global population are born with intersex traits, and are at risk of human rights violations that include surgery, discrimination and torture, according to the UN. A group of European medical experts published a set of new guidelines that urge doctors to defer medically unnecessary surgeries on intersex children until they are old enough to consent.


Four High-profile Democratic Senators Are Poised to Enter the 2020 Presidential Race.

Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts is the first major candidate to enter the 2020 race for president.

Senator Kamala Harris of California is eyeing Baltimore or Atlanta as a possible base of operations for her likely 2020 presidential bid and is close to bringing on a top aide to run her campaign.

Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey has been interviewing possible campaign managers, as well as strategists who could run his Iowa caucus effort.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York is expected to pick her current top aide to manage a campaign likely to be based near her upstate New York home.


Federal Employees Union Sues Government Over Lack of Pay. 

A federal employee labor union is suing the U.S. government for requiring “ essential” employees to work without pay during the partial government shutdown. The American Federation of Government Employees alleged that the government is violating the Fair Labor Standards Act by forcing employees deemed essential to work without pay.


Texas County Swears In 17 Black Female Judges After Historic Midterm Election.

Harris County, Texas, made history by swearing in 17 black female judges following a massive sweep in the November 2018 midterm elections.

The women were part of a local democratic campaign called “Black Girl Magic Texas” which pulled off what is believed to be the largest group of black female judges elected at the same time in the county’s history. The county, which includes Houston, is the largest in the state of Texas and has a population of more than 4 million people.




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