Gov. Bill Lee Grants County Mayors Authority to Issue Mask Mandates

Gov. Bill Lee signed an executive order Friday granting the mayors of 89 counties the authority to issue local face mask mandates.

Six Tennessee counties – Sullivan, Knox, Hamilton, Davidson, Madison, and Shelby – have local health departments, and therefore already have the authority to issue mask requirements as needed, Lee’s office explained.

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Commentary: Why Do They Hate Thomas Jefferson?

When Al Sharpton demanded, three years ago, that the funding for the Jefferson Memorial’s upkeep be cut off, people laughed. But they’re not laughing now. Actually, they’re still laughing, but now it’s more of a nervous chuckle in dismal expectation of what’s to come. First it was Robert E. Lee, then it was Christopher Columbus, and now it’s old TJ himself. 

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FBI Arrests Antifa Ringleader of Attempt to Topple Andrew Jackson Statue in DC

The alleged “ringleader” in a recent attempt to destroy the Andrew Jackson statue in Washington DC was arrested Thursday, and charged with destruction of federal property.

Jason Charter, a known antifa agitator, was arrested at his home by the FBI and U.S. Park Police as part of a joint task force, Fox News reported.

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Activist Leaves Hong Kong After New Law to Advocate Abroad

Prominent Hong Kong democracy activist Nathan Law has left the city for an undisclosed location after testifying in a U.S. congressional hearing about a tough new security law imposed by mainland China on the semi-autonomous territory.

Law, who declined to disclose his whereabouts for safety, said in an interview with The Associated Press on Friday that he left because Hong Kong needs an advocate for democracy who can work internationally.

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Teenagers in Nashville Spend July 4 Vilifying Law Enforcement

Nashville couldn’t have its yearly July 4 festivities or fireworks show because of the city’s COVID-19 restrictions, but it could have teenagers marching downtown and screaming to take down the police.

Such was the case Saturday as hundreds, perhaps thousands, of members of the group Teens For Equality met at Nashville’s Bicentennial Capitol Mall Park. They gave speeches. They marched. They chanted about their contempt for law enforcement.

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Tennessee Comptrollers: Former County Mayor Tried to Hide Wife’s Role in Auto Accident

Former Haywood County Mayor Franklin Smith filed a false accident claim after his wife was involved in an auto accident in May 2018 while she drove a county-owned vehicle, according to Tennessee Comptrollers.

Comptrollers did not identify the former county mayor by name in a report they submitted this week.

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Commentary: When Tyranny Through Bureaucracy Takes Root the Growth of Violence Follows

by Annie Holmquist   It’s funny how peaceful all this recent protesting for change has been. In fact, it’s so peaceful that average Americans, trying to go about their lives as normally as possible, are simply surrounded by love and feelings of euphoria. I speak tongue-in-cheek, of course, for the…

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New Virginia Gun Laws Take Effect Amid Nationwide Unrest

A host of gun control laws, passed months ago and spearheaded by Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, took effect on Wednesday in the commonwealth after months of fierce opposition from pro-firearm groups.

Northam signed the slew of gun restrictions in April after they passed the state’s General Assembly, where Democrats hold the majority, USA Today reported. The lawmakers faced dissent from over 20,000 angry citizens — many of whom were heavily armed — in the state’s capital in late January, according to Fox News.

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LA City Council Okays Replacing Police with Community Responders for Non-Violent Calls

The Los Angeles City Council approved a measure Tuesday that would allow unarmed community responders to step in for uniformed officers on non-violent calls, according to news reports.

The local government’s initiative was unanimous and will replace cops on calls for drug overdoses and mental health issues, among other non-violent situations, according to CBS Los Angeles. The city is likely to draw on its health and homeless departments to strategize on the new style of policing.

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Analysis: A Deeper Look at Black Lives Matter and Its Impact

Standing behind vandals who attempted to pull down the bronze statue of Andrew Jackson near the White House last week is a loosely configured, increasingly well-funded network of Black Lives Matter activists bent on constraining and defunding law enforcement. 

An area called Black Lives Matter Plaza became the staging ground for more than 100 demonstrators, many of them egging on the vandalism before police intervened. 

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STUDY: Anti-Malarial Drug Used to Treat Lupus Helped COVID-19 Patients Survive, Despite Media Claims

An anti-malarial drug that President Donald Trump hyped as a potential therapy for the coronavirus helped some patients survive the disease while in the hospital, according to research published Wednesday.

Some of those who received hydroxychloroquine before acute symptoms began were much less likely to die from the virus, according to researchers at Henry Ford Health System in Michigan. Their findings come after other studies determined that the experimental drug provided little or no benefit to people struggling with the coronavirus, or COVID-19.

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Supreme Court to Determine Whether Congress Can See Redactions in the Mueller Report

The Supreme Court announced Thursday that it will hear a case that will decide whether Congress can see redacted portions of former special counsel Robert Mueller’s report into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The case’s arguments will most likely be heard in the fall after the presidential election, and the Supreme Court will likely reach a decision in 2021, The New York Times reported. The case came after the House Judiciary Committee requested grand jury documents the Department of Justice redacted from the Mueller report.

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American Greatness Ad in New York Times Calls for Yale to be Renamed After Jeremiah Dummer

The New York Times on Thursday published an advertisement calling for Yale to be renamed after someone who was not a brutal, white supremacist slave-trader. A Harvard man named Jeremiah Dummer fits the bill, New Criterion editor and American Greatness contributor Roger Kimball argues.

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Republicans Invoke Independence Day In Opposition to Walz’s Coronavirus Response

Gov. Tim Walz recently filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought against him regarding his use of emergency powers during the coronavirus pandemic.

The lawsuit was filed on May 28 by four members of the New House Republican Caucus, the Free Minnesota Coalition, and at least eight businesses across the state. The complaint argues that the governor does not have the authority to “suspend the constitutional rights of Minnesotans.”

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Michigan Diverts a Third of All Gas Tax Revenues Away from Road Repairs

Every U.S. state taxes fuel sales to fund road repairs.  

Fully half of them, however, divert a portion of those taxes for other purposes. And Michigan, with a gas-tax diversion rate (GTDR) of 33.9 percent, is ranked with New Jersey as the third highest GTDR in the nation. Only New York (37.5 percent) and Rhode Island (37.1 percent) have higher GTDRs.

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Franklin County Sees Surge in Suspected Drug Overdoses in 2020’s First Quarter

Franklin County saw a 55 percent increase in suspected drug overdose deaths for the first quarter of 2020 compared to 2019’s first quarter.

Between January and March of 2020, Franklin County experienced 191 drug overdose death. During this same time span in 2019, the county saw 123 deaths.

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Ilhan Omar Introduces Federal Job Guarantee Bill

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN-05) introduced a bill last week that would create a “job guarantee program” at the U.S. Department of Labor.

The Workforce Promotion and Access Act, sponsored by Omar and Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ-12), seeks to get more Americans “back to work in living-wage jobs created directly by the federal government.”

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Government Retaliation Prompts Expansion of Lawsuit Against Mayor Cooper and Governor Lee Over COVID-19 Orders

A legal complaint brought by a local bar owner against Nashville Mayor John Cooper and Tennessee Governor Bill Lee for violating constitutional rights with their respective orders related to COVID-19 has since expanded due to more recent retaliatory events.

The original complaint was filed in late May, The Tennessee Star reported, with an amended version filed with the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee about a month later.

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