In The News Today.

US News, Politics, World News, Commentary/Opinion and Video Post.

US News:

‘Absolutely Astounding’: DCNF Reporter Describes How Record Numbers Of Illegal Migrants Are Being Rescued, Found Dead

A record number of illegal migrants have been rescued or found dead at the southern border, Jennie Taer, an investigative reporter with the Daily Caller News Foundation, told “NewsNation” Wednesday night.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported rescuing 18,881 illegal aliens, with another 650 dying since Oct. 1, 2021, according to federal data provided exclusively to the DCNF.

“You have migrants coming from all over the world down there,” the DCNF’s Taer told host Paul Gerke. “They’re endangering their lives; they’re endangering the lives of others. It’s a constant flow out of these gaps.”

“Yuma is a hot spot, but also are other areas, like Del Rio, Texas, which is really suffering right now,” Taer said.

“It is absolutely a non-stop flow in that one gap of migrants constantly,” she added. “There were about 1300 coming through a day then, and it seems like it really hasn’t stopped there, talking to sources on the ground currently.”

FBI arrests Wanda Vazquez-Garced, former governor or Puerto Rico, for bribery

FILE: Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vazquez Garced   ARDUENGO/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES
FILE: Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vazquez Garced ARDUENGO/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Vazquez-Garced is accused of seven charges and could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted. She’s scheduled to make her initial court appearance Thursday in federal court in the District of Puerto Rico. 

According to the indictment, she allegedly engaged in a bribery scheme from December 2019 through July 2020 with multiple individuals, including the Venezuelan-Italian bank owner Julio Martin Herrera Velutini; the bank’s president, Frances Diaz; former FBI agent Mark Rossini and political consultant John Blakeman.

A Justice Department news release said that Diaz and Blakeman have pleaded guilty to participating in the bribery scheme. 

Apple Promises Change to ‘Training and Processes’ After Series of HR Complaints

James Martin/CNET
James Martin/CNET

Apple said in a statement published Thursday that it didn’t correctly handle a series of harassment and misconduct claims brought by more than a dozen current and former employees, and it promised it would change how the company works.

“There are some accounts raised that do not reflect our intentions or our policies and we should have handled them differently,” Apple said in a statement to the Financial Times. 

The statement came in response to a story by the publication highlighting some of the harassment claims and the company’s poor response. Some of the women behind the claims said Apple’s HR teams didn’t investigate accusations thoroughly enough and appeared to seek pretexts under which to fire or lay off the people making claims. The FT described the women as alleging that Apple had demonstrated “apathy in the face of misconduct claims.”

BLM Activist Vows Revenge After ‘Free Beacon’ Report on His $40K Show Dog

Shaun King and his dog, Marz
Shaun King and his dog, Marz

The former Bernie Sanders surrogate embarked on his vengeance tour after the Free Beacon reported on Monday that Grassroots Law PAC, which King founded in 2019 to “elect candidates who are committed to reducing mass incarceration and police violence,” paid $40,650 to a California dog breeder called Potrero Performance Dogs.

King said this week he bought Marz for protection “because literal white supremacists have been coming to our home.”

There is no indication that the PAC’s payment is illegal, but it does raise questions about whether King’s organization is using its money as donors intended.

“This luxury dog expense may not be illegal for a PAC, but it shows little respect for King’s donors,” said Scott Walter, the president of Capital Research Center. The PAC’s payments to Potrero are among its largest expenditures. The PAC has contributed roughly $60,000 to political candidates since 2021.

Pennsylvania gay pride event features shirtless instructor teaching children to pole dance

A pride event in PA featured a stripper pole where they taught kids how to pole dance @LibsofTikTok (@LibsofTikTok)
A pride event in PA featured a stripper pole where they taught kids how to pole dance @LibsofTikTok (@LibsofTikTok)

“A pride event in PA featured a stripper pole where they taught kids how to pole dance,” the Twitter account LibsofTikTok posted on Thursday along with a TikTok video showing a young boy with a rainbow skirt pole dancing after a man with no shirt gave him instructions. 

The video was deleted shortly after being shared to LibsofTikTok’s page.

The popular conservative Twitter account also posted a letter from Pennsylvania’s Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf expressing his support for the event. 

The video earned widespread condemnation on Twitter from accounts calling out the parents and calling the scene inappropriate. 

Federal judge rules West Virginia Medicaid must provide coverage for gender-related surgeries

Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images
Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images

Judge Chambers’ ruling argued that denying surgical coverage violates 14th Amendment rights. The amendment grants all people “equal protections of the law.”

Judge Chambers also addressed the debate regarding the medical necessity for surgery. The ruling cited Dr. Schechter’s expert report, which claimed that the medical community agrees about surgical procedures as a treatment for gender dysphoria. Further, Dr. Schechter stated that the surgery is “not experimental” and is “medically necessary.”

The ruling also argued that denying coverage for gender-affirming surgery violates the Affordable Cares Act, the comparability requirement of the Medicaid Act, and the availability requirement of the Medicaid Act.

80-year-old granny banned from YMCA after demanding biological male leave women’s locker room where little girls were undressing

An 80-year-old Washington state woman has been banned from using her local YMCA’s public pool after she expressed discomfort with a biological male in the women’s locker room as young girls were undressing.

She was in the shower when she heard a male voice and peeked out to find a biological male in a women’s swimsuit engaging with little girls who were undressing.

Jaman said that she had been showering after her July 26 swim at the pool, when she heard “a man’s voice in the women’s dressing area.

” She said that she saw “a man in a women’s swimsuit, watching little girls pull down their bathing suits in order to use the toilets in the dressing room.”

According to the Port Townsend Free Press, Jaman, who had been in the shower when she realized what was happening, hidden behind thin, sheer shower curtains, asked this person, revealed to go by the name Clementine Adams, “Do you have a penis?”

“None of your business,” Adams reportedly responded.

“Get out of here, right now,” Jaman replied.

In response to the incident, Jaman, who had been a patron of the pool for decades, was banned.

“There is no signage informing women the shower room is now all gender and what that means, nor have parents been informed of what they can expect with these new policies,” Jaman told the City Council.

“The Y has not provided any dressing, shower room options for women who do not want to be exposed to men who identify as women,” she added.

Kamala Harris’s Relentless Prosecution Of Pro-Life Journalist Lives On 7 Years Later

GAGE SKIDMORE/FLICKR/
CC BY-SA 2.0
GAGE SKIDMORE/FLICKR/CC BY-SA 2.0

Attorneys for citizen journalist and pro-life activist David Daleiden filed a motion this week for California Attorney General Rob Bonta to recuse his office from Daleiden’s prosecution for the investigative journalism that uncovered Planned Parenthood’s trafficking of aborted baby body parts.

The criminal prosecution has been ongoing for seven years now, making Bonta the second attorney general to inherit the work of former Attorney General Kamala Harris, who first launched the political investigation against Daleiden.

Xavier Becerra, now secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, picked up where his predecessor Harris left off when he filed 15 criminal charges against Daleiden and his Center for Medical Progress colleague Sandra Merrit in 2017.

Harris personally met with six Planned Parenthood executives in March 2016, at the attorney general’s Los Angeles office. An email outlining action items from the meeting shows that they discussed both Planned Parenthood’s political agenda in the state of California and her investigation into Daleiden and the Center for Medical Progress. Two of the six executives in that meeting were used as witnesses in Harris’ criminal investigation.

This latest motion from Daleiden’s legal team recounts how the attorney general’s office under Harris’s leadership “invidiously targeted Mr. Daleiden’s exercise of First Amendment rights.” They detail how Harris colluded with Planned Parenthood and NAF officials, the latter of which spent over $22,000 in attorney fees consulting with the attorney general’s office on key parts of the search warrant to seize Daleiden’s videos and equipment.

Illegal immigrant suspected in kidnapping of 12-year-old

‘In Pursuit with John Walsh’ host Callahan Walsh shares his thoughts on the recent case where a 12-year-old girl was kidnapped, allegedly by an illegal immigrant with a criminal record, and escaped by chewing through her restraints.

Health experts worried Louisiana won’t have enough monkeypox vaccines ahead of ‘Gay Mardi Gras’ festival

Photo via Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images
Photo via Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Louisiana expects to receive 7,200 more doses of the vaccine ahead of Southern Decadence, but KALB indicated this won’t be enough.

The LDH identified the first case of monkeypox in a Louisiana resident on July 7. There are presently 58 infected, 42 of whom are in southeast Louisiana.

Dr. Brobson Lutz, former health director for New Orleans, told Fox 8 that the “Orleans Parish area is the epicenter for the cases in the state.” He noted that Southern Decadence, “where you’ve got a large number of gay men coming together, who are likely to be in close personal contact,” will be the “ideal setting to transmit it,” but may also be a good opportunity to “get people immunized.”

Samuel Burgess, STD/HIV/hepatitis program director at LDH, said the virus disproportionately affects gay people and bisexualsRosamund Lewis, the World Health Organization’s monkeypox expert, revealed that 99% of those infected are men and 95% are gay men.

Dr. Harvey Risch: Healthy Children Should Not Be Vaccinated Against COVID-19 | CLIP

“Dying from COVID, or having a very serious outcome from COVID, in very young children, is essentially less likely than being struck by lightning.”

Dr. Harvey Risch says that healthy young children should not be vaccinated against COVID-19.

He says that while the risks of death for healthy children are extremely low whether they are vaccinated or not, the risks from the vaccine are still “10 or 50 fold larger.”

VIDEO: Does the Covid Vax Weaken Your Immune System? Multiple Studies Say

The Covid-19 vaccine not only does not prevent covid, and it doesn’t, but could it actually weaken your immune system? There are now multiple studies that prove that is the case.

Today, we will not only break down those studies for you but we will tell you how all of this seems to be connected to the sudden rise of SADS or Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome… a new phenomenon that most media wants to hide from you.

Republican congresswoman Jackie Walorski among four dead in car crash in Indiana

FILE - In this July 19, 2018, photo, Rep. Jackie Walorski, R-Ind., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)
FILE – In this July 19, 2018, photo, Rep. Jackie Walorski, R-Ind., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Ms Walorski, 58, had represented Indiana’s 2nd congressional district since 2012.

Police say the crash involved a northbound passenger car and a southbound SUV.

The Elkhart County Coroner’s Office and the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office are conducting the investigation.

Ms Walorski’s communications director, Emma Thomson, 27, and Zachery Potts, 28, a district director for the
lawmaker, were also killed, the sheriff’s office confirmed.

The driver of the other vehicle, 56-year-old Edith Schmucker, was pronounced dead at the scene.

“RAY EPPS RECRUITED ME!” – Political Prisoner Writes Tell-All Letter From Prison About His Experience with the Notorious Operative Ray Epps

Sean McHugh with his son before January 6th.
Sean McHugh with his son before January 6th.

Through their persecution of hundreds of political prisoners, Merrick Garland’s DOJ has made clear that urging people to “Go into the Capitol” constitutes a heinous crime. They have made it clear that moving or pushing objects in the vicinity of law enforcement constitutes “assault with a dangerous weapon”. They have made clear that trespassing on Capitol grounds is felony “Obstruction of Justice”, punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

While Ray Epps is on video doing all of the above – including acknowledging the illegality of his conduct (“I’ll probably go to jail for it”) – Garland’s DOJ has offered no explanation as to why Epps is a free man and uncharged UNLIKE THE MANY PROTESTERS HE INFLUENCED.

In fact, McHugh is being urged by his public defender to accept a plea offer that would put him in jail for 7-8 years – despite injuring no one, damaging nothing, not entering the building and abiding by curfew.

McHugh is the third man to come forward to say he was witness to Rap Epps igniting lawlessness that day.

Even leftists classify Epps as a “kind of a mentor… seen on the front lines”who “gives instructions” and “seems to help direct the breach.” One other January 6 defendant told the Epoch Times that Epps pulled three men from the crowd and directed them to obtain siege weapons from a hatch on Capitol grounds.

San Francisco Fed president, who reportedly earns over $420,000 annually: ‘I don’t feel the pain of inflation anymore. I see prices rising, but I have enough.’

Image source: YouTube screenshot
Image source: YouTube screenshot

At around the 17-minute mark, Dunsmuir posed a question from a listener who wondered where Daly was “personally seeing the impact of inflation” in her own day-to-day life.

After seemingly searching for an answer for several seconds, she admitted “I don’t feel the pain of inflation anymore.” Daly reportedly earns over $420,000 annually.

“I see prices rising, but I have enough that I can make substitutions … I’m not immune to gas prices rising, food prices rising, I sometimes balk at the price of things, but I don’t find myself in a space where I have to make trade-offs because I have enough — many, many Americans have enough,” she added.

Chuck Schumer’s son-in-law lands lucrative gig at private equity giant Blackstone

Before they wed in 2016, Michael Shapiro and Jessica Schumer met when they were both working for the Obama administration in 2011.
Facebook/Michael Shapiro
Before they wed in 2016, Michael Shapiro and Jessica Schumer met when they were both working for the Obama administration in 2011.
Facebook/Michael Shapiro

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s son-in-law has been hired by top private equity firm Blackstone — the latest family member to land a lucrative gig with an industrial giant that is subject to government regulation.

Michael Shapiro, the Princeton- and Yale-educated lawyer who most recently worked for the Biden administration as deputy assistant secretary for economic policy at the Department of Transportation, has been hired as director for government affairs by the Wall Street firm.

Blackstone, which is run by billionaire businessman Stephen Schwarzman, has $880 billion in assets under its management.

Shapiro’s portfolio at Blackstone deals with infrastructure investments and projects.

Politics:

Pentagon DELAYS another missile test to avoid angering China

The Biden administration postponed a routine test launch of an Air Force Minuteman III intercontinental missile on Thursday to avoid further enflaming tensions with China, according to officials.

The U.S. has repeatedly delayed tests this year as Beijing ramps up its rhetoric over Taiwan, which it views as Chinese territory, and as Russia waged war in Ukraine.

This time, the test was postponed after China deployed dozens of planes and fired missiles near Taiwan in a show of strength in response to the visit of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The test was due to be conducted from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

White House security spokesman John Kirby said the decision to delay was taken by President Joe Biden.

Here Are The Dems Refusing To Endorse A Biden Run In 2024

Top Democrats are losing faith in President Joe Biden’s chances of winning re-election in 2024 and stating they want a change in leadership, the Washington Examiner reported Thursday.

Nearly 54% of voters disapprove of Biden’s performance as president, data from a Rasmussen Reports poll  showed. The 79-year-old president’s advanced age coupled with a stagnating economy and consistently negative polling is signaling to top Democratic representatives that it might be time to pump the brakes in 2024, the Washington Examiner reported.

Reps. Jerrold Nadler and Carolyn Maloney, who are running for the same seat in Manhattan due to redistricting, both declined to openly support a Biden 2024 run during a debate between the two incumbents, according to the Washington Examiner. Nadler serves as the chair of the House Judiciary Committee, while Maloney heads the House Oversight and Reform Committee.

The two powerful chairs are the latest in a stream of Democrats attempting to distance themselves from Biden, accordingto Politico.

Democratic Minnesota Rep. Dean Phillips said the party “would be well served by a new generation of compelling, well-prepared, dynamic Democrats to step up,” during a radio interview with WCCO. Phillips declined to support a Biden re-election campaign.

His opponent, Democratic Rep. Angie Craig, agreed with Philips during a campaign event when asked by the MinnPost whether she would support Biden’s campaign.

At today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) grilled FBI Director Christopher Wray.

At today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) grilled FBI Director Christopher Wray.

‘Blue Collar Tough Guy’ John Fetterman Lived off Parents’ Money Until His Mid-40s

AP Photo/Matt Rourke
AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Although Fetterman runs ads that purport him to be a “blue collar tough guy,” his parents reportedly financially supported him while he served as mayor of Braddock, Pennsylvania, for 13 years.

Fetterman, who has acknowledged his “cushy” suburban childhood, has openly admitted to the financial contributions his parents gave him as an adult.

For example, in 2015, his parents gave him $54,000, which he disclosed during his failed 2016 Senate candidacy, according to the Pennsylvania Inquirer.

Both of his parents provided he and his wife four $13,500 gifts, totaling $54,000, which was just below the $14,000 threshold for taxable gifts at the time.

In addition, Fetterman’s father reportedly donated $100,000 single-candidate super PAC that backed his 2016 candidacy. Fetterman also received financial assistance from family members other than his parents. In 2013, he paid his sister $1 for a loft that she purchased for $70,000.

Fetterman’s annual salary while he served as Braddock mayor from 2006 to 2019 was $1,800.

DeSantis Suspends State Attorney Who Promised Not To Enforce The Law

LIVENOW FROM FOX/YOUTUBE
LIVENOW FROM FOX/YOUTUBE

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday suspended Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren, who pledged not to press charges against those who violate state abortion laws.

“We are suspending Soros-backed 13th circuit state attorney Andrew Warren for neglecting his duties as he pledges not to uphold the laws of the state,” the Republican’s office said in a statement.

“The constitution of Florida has vested the veto power in the governor, not in state attorneys,” DeSantis said. “We are not going to allow this pathogen of ignoring the law get a foothold in the state of Florida.”

DeSantis’ decision to suspend Warren is the first of many actions the governor plans to take to stamp out corrupt prosecutors whom he blames for the uptick in crime within Democrat-run cities.

Warren, alongside more than 84 state and district attorneys, signed his name onto a statement by Fair and Justice Prosecution, a network of elected local prosecutors taking it upon themselves to decide which laws should be enforced to promote a “compassionate” justice system.

Tom Cotton moves to ban China from buying US land

Why is China allowed to buy up U.S. land? Sen. Tom Cotton is trying to stop it.

‘Chinese Communist Party’: Sasse Asks FBI Director Point Blank Who Is The US’s Most Significant Foe

During Thursday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) grilled FBI Director Christopher Wray about China.

Biden takes executive action, wants taxpayers to subsidize abortion across state lines: ‘Ripped away by this extreme court’

Alex Wong/Getty Images
Alex Wong/Getty Images

The executive order directs Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra to “consider actions to advance access to reproductive healthcare services, including … through Medicaid for patients traveling across State lines for medical care.”

The White House said the EO aligns with Biden’s “commitment to defending the bedrock right to travel across state lines to seek reproductive healthcare in states where those services remain legal.'”

While Biden wants HHS to “consider actions” to fund abortion through Medicaid, actually doing so would be prima facie illegal under the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal funds from paying for abortions.

World News:

Ukrainian military’s tactics endangered civilians, new report says

Ukrainian troops near Sloviansk in June © Scott Olson/Getty Images
Ukrainian troops near Sloviansk in June © Scott Olson/Getty Images

The report alleges that these tactics by Ukrainian forces constitute a violation of international humanitarian law, which requires all combatants to “avoid locating, to the maximum extent feasible, military objectives within or near densely-populated areas.”

Amnesty International said that between April and July, its researchers found evidence of Ukrainian forces basing themselves in civilian buildings, as well as launching strikes from within residential areas, in 19 towns and villages across the Kharkiv, Donbas and Mykolaiv regions.

  • “Most residential areas where soldiers located themselves were miles away from front lines and viable alternatives were available that would not have endangered civilians,” the report noted, adding that Amnesty was not aware of Ukrainian forces asking or assisting civilians to evacuate the area.
  • Amnesty International discovered Ukrainian forces using hospitals as military bases in five locations, the report stated, terming it a “clear violation of international humanitarian law.”
  • The report also said that Ukrainian forces “routinely” set up bases in schools in the Donbas and in the Mykolaiv regions, and that these schools — while closed to students — were often located close to populated residential areas.
  • “At 22 out of 29 schools visited, Amnesty researchers either found soldiers using the premises or found evidence of current or prior military activity…Russian forces struck many of the schools used by Ukrainian forces,” the report stated.
  • “In at least three towns, after Russian bombardment of the schools, Ukrainian soldiers moved to other schools nearby, putting the surrounding neighborhoods at risk of similar attacks.”

Russian court jails US basketball player Brittney Griner for nine years on drug charges

Brittney Griner stands inside a defendants' cage before a court hearing in Khimki near Moscow. Photograph: Evgenia Novozhenina/Reuters
Brittney Griner stands inside a defendants’ cage before a court hearing in Khimki near Moscow. Photograph: Evgenia Novozhenina/Reuters

Her formal conviction, which was a foregone conclusion, is a necessary step if a prisoner exchange is to take place. US officials say Russia wants to swap Griner and Paul Whelan, a former US marine arrested on spying charges in 2020, for the convicted arms dealer Viktor Bout.

A handcuffed Griner said, “I love my family,” as she was led out of the courtroom.

Griner’s defence team said they were “disappointed” by the verdict and would appeal. It is unlikely any swap would be made before the appeals process is exhausted.

Although she pleaded guilty to the drug charges, the US has classified Griner as “wrongfully detained”, launching a process similar to hostage negotiations with Iran and other countries. A senior US embassy official attended Thursday’s hearing and verdict, where police spetsnaz (special forces) and bomb-sniffing dogs patrolled the hallways.

Israel prepares for escalation with Gaza; Iran nuclear talks resume in Vienna TV7 Israel News 04.08

1) Tensions continue to run high between Israel and the Iranian-proxy Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip – with Egyptian-led efforts aiming to frustrate risks of escalation.

2) A new round of talks aimed at reviving the 2015 nuclear agreement concludes in the Austrian capital, Vienna.

3) The Syrian army, alongside Iranian-proxy militias and U.S.-backed Kurdish SDF militants, are preparing under Russian auspices against a looming Turkish offensive into northern Syria.

Politicians Abdicated Their Responsibilities to Public Health Experts

Roman Baber is a former Member of Ontario’s Provincial Parliament.

He is running for Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada because he will not “sit back while Canadians are losing faith in Canada’s democracy and Canadian opportunity.”

He was removed by Doug Ford from the Ontario government caucus after calling out the collateral harm of lockdowns in January 2021.

Since then, Roman has been a staunch advocate in favour of a balanced covid response and in particular against lockdowns due to their toll on the health and mental health of Canadians.

Roman brought legislation to cut MPP pay to CERB levels while Emergency Orders are in place, commenced and is in litigation against the Attorney General of Ontario over Canadians’ right to protest and worship outdoors and recently brought a Bill to outlaw workplace mandates.

Hungarian official blasts CNN misinformation

Hungarian Prime Minister Orban’s Political Director Balazs Orban joins Tucker to respond to claims made by CNN comparing modern Hungary to Nazi Germany on ‘Tucker Carlson Tonight.’

China launches ballistic missiles toward Taiwan

The missile launches are part of an unprecedented series of military drills after U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan. Pelosi’s visit enraged Beijing, which views the self-governing island as its sovereign territory.

Pelosi Visit: ‘We Salute the Successes of Taiwan’; Countries React to Pelosi’s Taiwan Visit

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi wraps up her historic visit to Taiwan—after a series of threats from Beijing.

A Chinese company is eyeing a deep water port and airstrip in the Solomon Islands amid mounting concerns in the West about a potential Chinese military base just a thousand miles from Australia.

India is on high alert. A Chinese military ship plans to visit one of its neighbors—though the country says the ship is only there to refuel.

In a dangerous dance between three Pacific powers, New Zealand is looking to improve its relations with Beijing, while the United States seeks to boost military ties with the island country.

Commentary/Opinion:

Americans Lost Fundamental Freedoms During Covid — But Halting Gay Orgies To Stop Monkeypox Is Too Far

DANCETECHTV/FLICKR
/CC BY 2.0
DANCETECHTV/FLICKR/CC BY 2.0

Like many people, far too many, I lost a loved one to Covid-19. My grandmother came to visit her family a few weeks before she became ill, she was there to show off her new husband, her fifth, having outlived her others.

She was perky, sassy, and the happiest I had seen her. She greeted my husband and me with a wide smile and an enthusiastic hug. In her 80s, she had never let anything stop her, but she never anticipated the power of the government.

When she and her husband both tested positive, they were separated. She spent the next week alone, isolated from her family.

Covid regulations kept her locked in a room, afraid and crying to see her family one last time. She passed before she was allowed to have the chance.

Further Covid regulations prevented us from holding a funeral for her. I had begun making her a quilt, but I wasn’t able to finish in time. All I could think about was all those photos of elderly couples separated by walls of plastic, only wanting to embrace each other.

Yet the most basic expectations of self-control and personal responsibility have been deemed outrageous homophobic bigotry. Unfortunately, this two-tiered system could have serious consequences far beyond the spread among gay male populations.

As the CDC points out, monkeypox spreads through close skin-to-skin contact and exchange of body fluids, but also through dirty clothing and fluids from open sores left on surfaces. As gay men spread the virus within their population at startling rates, the chances of it escaping into the mundane world through close contact in stores, crowded streets, or buses increases.

We shut down the world for a virus that had no traceable transmission, it was entirely random. It really isn’t too much to ask for gay men to stop engaging in orgies and public sex events for their “mental health,” their “self-esteem,” and to continue “having fun.” This time around, truly selfish behavior is endangering the rest of us, and we shouldn’t be shamed for speaking out against it.

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