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JESSICA GRIFFIN/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

As pollen torments millions, it might be getting worse, and it's poorly measured in America

Current News / News & Features /

PHILADELPHIA – He found masses of pollen as thick as “oatmeal,” and once discovered that grains from palm trees had ridden the winds for hundreds of miles to reach his front porch.

For 17 years, Timothy Craig intercepted the airborne gametes of trees, grasses, and weeds with a whirling trap, assiduously examined the captives with a ...Read more

Red Huber/TNS

Matt Gaetz helped set off Florida's marijuana 'green rush.' Some of his friends, allies scored big

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ORLANDO, Fla. — Less than 24 hours before the Florida Legislature passed the state’s first medical marijuana law in May 2014, Matt Gaetz and other members of the state House of Representatives rewrote the bill to limit who would be able to get in on the ground floor of what has since become a billion-dollar business.

A number of Gaetz’s ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS

States push to extend postpartum Medicaid benefits to save lives

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More states are moving to extend Medicaid benefits to new mothers up to a full year after giving birth, far beyond the 60 days required by federal law.

That development, promoted by numerous medical groups as well as official state medical boards that focus on maternal health, reflects increasing alarm over the United States’ maternal ...Read more

Provided by Neighborhood Health/TNS

As COVID-19 vaccine demand dips, community health centers take the lead

Current News / News & Features /

Rob Wohl, a COVID-19 vaccine outreach worker in Northern Virginia, said his best day on the job was when he walked into a white-tablecloth Chinese restaurant in Falls Church, Virginia, in April to see whether he could sign up employees for vaccinations.

He arrived right before the lunch rush, which turned out to be perfect timing. “The ...Read more

Al Seib/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Drones show California's great white sharks are closer -- and more common -- than you think

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LOS ANGELES — Carlos Gauna surveys the wind-blown waves off a popular Santa Barbara County beach. It is a cold, gray afternoon and only a few people are in the water: a father teaching his son to surf, a lone man wading in the whitewash.

Gauna launches his video drone, hoping to spy what might be moving stealthily among them — great white ...Read more

Gary Coronado/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Still wary of shedding COVID-19 protections? Experts say that's normal

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SAN JOSE, Calif. — Across the Bay Area, vaccinated people are venturing onto breezy restaurant patios, visiting with small groups of inoculated friends and hitting hiking trails unmasked. The science says the risk of getting or transmitting the coronavirus in such scenarios is very low.

But there’s another group of residents who, even after...Read more

Mario Tama/Getty Images North America/TNS

GOP's voting curbs show long reach of 2013 Supreme Court ruling

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WASHINGTON — Republicans across the U.S. can thank the Supreme Court and Chief Justice John Roberts as they enact the country’s most significant voting restrictions in generations.

The court’s watershed 2013 Shelby County ruling created a glide path for many of election changes GOP-controlled legislatures are pushing this year. The ...Read more

Nhat V. Meyer/San Jose Mercury News/TNS

Fat shaming, BMI and alienation: COVID-19 brought new stigma to large-sized people

Current News / News & Features /

LOS ANGELES – Chrystal Bougon cried after the needle went into her arm. Not because her first dose of the Moderna vaccine hurt. But because, finally, being fat actually paid off.

The 53-year-old was inoculated in the parking lot of Kaiser Permanente in San José on a rainy Friday in March, four days after eligibility in California was ...Read more

China says debris from its long March rocket landed in ocean

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Remains of a huge Chinese rocket have landed in the ocean, according to a statement by the China Manned Space Agency, amid global concern the country’s space program lost control of a giant chunk of debris.

Pieces of the Long March 5B rocket re-entered the atmosphere at 10:24 a.m. Sunday local time and plunged into the sea at around 72.47 ...Read more

Glen Wilson/Warner Bros./TNS

LaKeith Stanfield apologizes for moderating anti-Semitic Clubhouse chat

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LaKeith Stanfield apologized Friday for participating in an anti-Semitic social media conversation.

Stanfield, 29, did not say anything anti-Semitic himself, but was a moderator of a Clubhouse room in which other people spewed Jewish hatred Wednesday night, The Daily Beast reported.

“At some point during the dialogue the discussion took a ...Read more

Smiley N. Pool/TNS

Friday saw most airline passengers in one day since start of pandemic

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More than 1.7 million people traveled on airplanes Friday in the U.S., the highest single-day passenger total since March 12, 2020.

No day had topped 1.7 million passengers in the previous 14 months, according to Transportation Security Administration data.

The World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 pandemic on March 11, 2020, the ...Read more

Kimberly Butler/Avalon via ZUMA Press/TNS

Tawny Kitaen, '80s rock video star and 'Bachelor Party' actress, dies at 59

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LOS ANGELES —It was the late 1980s, and “Bachelor Party” actress Tawny Kitaen wasn’t necessarily looking for small-screen stardom. But the U.K. hard-rock band Whitesnake was shooting a promo, and its director decided it needed a star. Kitaen, who would later marry frontman David Coverdale, agreed to lend her fierce looks, fiery mane and...Read more

Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Is Garcetti going? Los Angeles waits with uncertainty as city faces major crossroads

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LOS ANGELES — At Los Angeles City Hall, everything is suddenly up in the air.

With Mayor Eric Garcetti again in the running for a post in the Biden administration — this time as U.S. ambassador to India — politicians, bureaucrats, activists and others are trying to figure out what a mayoral departure would mean for the city and its most ...Read more

Prosecutors will no longer seek death penalty in the Anthony Avalos torture case

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LOS ANGELES — Prosecutors will no longer seek the death penalty for the mother of Anthony Avalos and her boyfriend, who are accused of torturing the 10-year-old Lancaster boy for days before his death in 2018, Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon’s office confirmed Saturday.

A grand jury indicted Heather Maxine Barron, 31, and...Read more

Barry Williams/New York Daily News/TNS

New York probe into Cuomo expands to an adviser, WSJ reports

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NEW YORK — The New York State Attorney General’s Office is expanding its investigation into Gov. Andrew Cuomo, The Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday, citing people familiar with the matter.

The probe, focused on sexual harassment allegations against Cuomo, will now look at whether one of the governor’s top advisers linked support ...Read more

Rousseau Stefan/TNS

Sadiq Khan wins second term as London mayor after close race

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LONDON — Sadiq Khan was re-elected as Mayor of London but only after an unexpected surge in support for his main rival threatened to give Boris Johnson’s Conservatives their biggest prize of this week’s British elections.

As the incumbent Labour Party candidate, Khan was the runaway favorite to win the contest and keep his job but Shaun ...Read more

At least 3 people injured in shooting at Miami-area mall; shooter fled the scene, police say

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MIAMI – Three people were injured in a shooting Saturday afternoon at Aventura Mall that sent shoppers scattering to hide in stores and running out of exits just before 4 p.m.

Police say an argument between two groups of people got physical outside the Hugo Boss store in the mall, and one group showed a gun. One man from the other group ...Read more

JIM WATSON/AFP/AFP/TNS

Barack Obama mourns loss of pet dog Bo

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Former President Barack Obama Saturday mourned the loss of his family’s pet dog, Bo, who lived in the White House with the first family for nearly all eight years of his presidency.

“Our family lost a true friend and loyal companion,” Obama wrote on Twitter. “Bo was a constant, gentle presence in our lives — happy to see us on our ...Read more

Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Paradise's population surges, fueled by new housing construction in wake of Camp Fire

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California’s latest population estimates show that Paradise — the Northern California town ravaged by the Camp Fire in 2018 — has seen the fastest population growth in the state in the last year.

Fueled by housing construction, the population of Paradise rose from 4,608 people as of Jan. 1, 2020, up to 6,046 a year ...Read more

TASOS KATOPODIS/POOL/Sipa USA/TNS

Biden $400 billion care plan would have a caveat: States opt in

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WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s ambitious $400 billion plan to improve in-home care for the elderly and lift wages for millions of workers may be limited by states’ ability to opt out, based on early proposals from Congress.

The leading legislative draft in discussion would channel the funds through the U.S. government health-insurance...Read more