From Trump to the Southern Poverty Law Center, here’s what’s going on in the news today.
The Mueller Investigation:
If you’ve missed it over the weekend (although I doubt it, unless you’ve had your head in the sand), Robert Mueller turned his findings in to AG William Barr on Friday, ending one of the longest running investigations in U.S. history. The news prompted many on the right to believe that President Trump was exonerated because there were no new indictments recommended by the Mueller and his team.
This feeling was echoed on Sunday when Barr sent a letter to The Senate Judiciary Committee summarizing the report, taking quotes directly from Mueller and his investigation. In the report, Mueller states:
“[T]he investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”
And on obstruction of justice regarding the firing of then F.B.I. Director James Comey.
“…while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”
This has led to many conservative news pundits and personalities on the right to “gloat” so to speak on the findings of the probe. Pundits like Sean Hannity have claimed that the left’s “favorite conspiracy theory is now dead.”
The findings have also prompted some on the right, like Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) to reopen closed investigations in Hillary Clinton and her use of a public email. He has also suggested that the DOJ now investigate the Obama Administration spying on American citizens and a presidential campaign.
President Trump has also gone on record to saying that this report vindicates that he is innocent. The president spoke to reporters in Palm Beach after a weekend of playing golf at the Mar-a-Lago, saying that, “it was a complete and total exoneration.”
While many on the right are celebrating the news of the Mueller report, it should be noted that the full report has yet to be released and that there are still ongoing investigations into the President and his family. President Trump will also have to deal with house democrats and their own investigation into the Mueller probe and his findings.
As the saying goes:
Don’t count your eggs before they hatch.
Michael Avenatti and his new scandal:
Michael Avenatti, the attorney made famous for representing Stephanie Clifford AKA Stormy Daniels is in the headlines today after it was uncovered that he tried to extort Nike for an estimated $25 million. The celebrity lawyer was caught attempting to threaten Nike execs with claims of misconduct within the company.
Avenatti and Attorney Mark Geragos met with the company on March 19. There he threatened to release information to the public that could have been damaging to the company if the company didn’t agree to make payments to the two. Avenatti planned to use his ability to “garner publicity,” as a way to carry out the threats.
The celebrity lawyer allegedly told execs in the meeting that he would “go take ten billion dollars off your client’s market cap …” and that “…I’m not f***ing around.”
Avenatti has been taken into custody in New York for his extortion scheme against Nike. To make matters worse for the lawyer, he has also been charged in California for wire fraud and bank fraud where he has been accused of embezzling his client’s money to pay off personal debts.
There was a time where people heralded Avenatti as a knight in shining armor, some sort of weapon for those seeking to remove Trump from office. He was once in the discussion to run for president in 2020, before reports of domestic violence allegations came out against him, although he wasn’t charged with anything.
Avenatti once predicted that Donald Trump Jr. would be indicted before his birthday last year, citing his track record of proof that he would be right with this prediction. Perhaps he could have predicted his own short comings before they happened?
School shootings and its effects:
This morning it was reported that a third person related to a school shooting has committed suicide. This time it was Jeremy Richman the father of Avielle Richman, one of the 20 innocent children murdered in the Sandy Hook school shooting back in 2012. He was found at Edmond Town hall according to police. Not much else has been released of the suicide outside of the name and that there was no suspicious activity revolving around the death.
Only two days had passed since a student that survived the Parkland school shooting, who’s remained unnamed, had allegedly committed suicide on Saturday. That Friday was the funeral for another Parkland survivor that committed suicide, Sydney Aiello. It’s unclear if there was any correlation between the two events.
Sydney Aiello who suffered from PTSD and survivor’s remorse over the tragedy committed suicide a week before the unnamed student. Aiello, a cheerleader for the high school, was on campus the day the shooting occurred and was close with one of the victims, Meadow Pollack. She had graduated a few months after and attended Florida Atlantic University.
Richman, trying to make sure what happened to his daughter never happened again, co-founded the Aviello Foundation. It was created to honor the memory of his daughter and focused on bringing mental health issues into the spotlight through providing grants for projects that tackled a myriad of issues.
What are we doing to make sure that those who suffer from PTSD and survivor’s remorse don’t have to suffer anymore? Members on both sides of the aisle should come together and enact some sort of law that would provide free counseling services for those suffering from these afflictions due to school shootings.
The Southern Poverty Law Center under fire:
The famous civil rights organization continues to stir controversy after it was reported by the New York Times that some former and current members of the organization have demanded that those in charge address the intolerance within its own offices.
A few weeks ago, accusations of racism and sexual harassment were brought up against Morris Dees, the co-founder of the organization. Richard Cohen also announced on Friday that he would step down as president of the company. The center has not released any details regarding the circumstances the firing of Dees, it has been confirmed that he was investigated twice inappropriate conduct.
The company has made headlines in recent months due to the rise of white nationalism and increase of hate crimes within America. The group has identified over 1,000 hate groups currently working within the country. The company has made over $471 million dollars from donors like Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple who donated $1 million in the wake of the tragedy at Charlottesville.
It’s good that the employees are forcing higher ups at the company to re-examine the culture that’s been fostered there. The S.P.L.C. is too important of an organization to crumble under controversy, especially not now in America where the number of hate groups have been up 30 percent in the U.S. I think that all of this is going to damage the reputation of the group and will be used by opponents in further debates about hate in America.
That’s it for this briefing. If I missed anything you’d like me to cover, feel free to leave a comment down below.