Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery Joins Lawsuit to Block Vaccine Mandate for Head Start Program Volunteers

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery on Tuesday joined a legal effort to stop the Biden administration’s medical mandates for individuals involved in Head Start Programs.

Head Start Programs attempt to prepare children from low-income families for school. The programs focus on early learning and development, health, and family well-being.

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Commentary: Salvation Army’s Woke Descent Hurts Those It Serves

In regions like suburban Philadelphia, the Salvation Army’s red kettles at retail entrances are a timeless reminder of ordinary Americans’ philanthropic commitment to the less fortunate. Unfortunately, Salvation Army leaders have now dared to accuse these same Americans of participating in a “racist” society where “racial groups are placed into a hierarchy, with White or lighter-skinned people at the top.”

The organization’s “Let’s Talk About Racism” curriculum for its officers and soldiers has sparked national outrage for its admonition that white people “repent” for “racism” and for its belief that America “work[s] to keep White Americans in power.” Yet rather than admit that these woke ideas are not shared or supported by its donors or staff, the leadership of the Salvation Army has hidden its new effort from the public.

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Indianapolis Administrator Fired After Leaking School District’s Social Justice Initiatives

An Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) administrator was fired Monday for “sharing public files” with news outlets as well as recordings of a “Racial Justice Speaker Series” that was presented to students, according to a statement.

Tony Kinnett was fired from his job as District Science Coordinator & Instructional Coach for IPS for “Sharing that IPS recorded children in required racial justice sessions, not sending IPS the personal info of” two reporters, “quoting Dr. Payne’s racist comments to students” and for “sharing public files,” according to his Twitter.

Kinnett told the Daily Caller News Foundation that the HR team pulled him into several meetings that they repeatedly said were non-disciplinary, but he said at the meetings he was not allowed to speak freely, initially bring an attorney or record anything.

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Melania Trump Is Releasing Her Own Line of NFTs

Former first lady Melania Trump announced Thursday that she is launching her own line of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and donating a portion of the proceeds to fund children’s programs.

NFTs are unique units of data, similar to trading cards, that are stored on the blockchain, a decentralized public ledger distributed across multiple servers. Conventionally, an NFT is similar to a deed of ownership corresponding to a particular item of media, like a piece of digital art.

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Commentary: Charity Constitutes a Robust Alternative to Government Welfare

People compiling donation boxes of food

It’s that time of year again, the time when Americans consume more than ever, but also the time when Americans give more than ever. Indeed, America’s generosity as a whole is actually quite extensive, with Americans giving $471 billion in 2020, an all time high. That’s more than what the vast majority of countries bring in for tax revenue. 80% of this is from individuals, according to Giving USA.

Americans, in general, are incredibly generous, with 25% of Americans volunteering every year. Converted to a dollar value, this is roughly $179 billion worth of work. Most of this charity comes from the rich, with 93% of households that make over $162,501 donating to charity and 91% of households that make over $125,001 donating to charity.

Since the government started the “War on Poverty” 56 years ago, it has spent $27 trillion on this effort. And yet, it was only the beginning 7 years when poverty rates went down. Why? Well, one likely explanation is that welfare has taught people not to work, as governmental welfare dependency statistics have shown. Indeed, 93% of welfare recipients rely on welfare for more than 2 years. Charity, on the other hand, is not guaranteed, so it encourages people to take responsibility and become self-sufficient.

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More Americans Than Ever Before Have No Religious Affiliation

A new survey by the Pew Research Center shows that the number of American adults with no religious affiliation is on the rise and has reached its highest point yet, as reported by Fox News.

Pew’s new study, released on Tuesday, shows that those who identify as having no religious affiliation make up 29 percent of all American adults. The number was previously 23 percent in 2016 and 19 percent in 2011, a whole ten points lower than it is today.

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From Fauci to Big Tech, GOP Already Has Clear Investigative Targets If It Wins Back Congress

Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan is the most likely candidate to take over the House Judiciary Committee if the GOP wins back Congress next year. Ask him what he wants to investigate and who he wants to subpoena, and he doesn’t hesitate. Not even for even a second.

“Fauci,” he told Just the News, referring to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the U.S. infectious disease specialist overseeing America’s pandemic response.

While the many conflicting messages and reversals of the pandemic response are ripe for investigation, Republicans like Jordan also want to press Fauci about why America was funding China’s bat research on coronaviruses at the Wuhan Institute of Virology through a U.S. nonprofit called EcoHealth Alliance and why NIH revived a dangerous form of experimentation known as gain of function in 2017.

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The Surprising Reason Religious Couples Are Less Likely to Get Divorced

Religious couples are less likely to get divorced despite marrying younger — a factor generally associated with higher divorce rates — because they are less likely to live together before marriage, according to the Institute for Family Studies (IFS).

For those who married in their twenties, cohabitation before marriage was associated with higher divorce rates for both religious and nonreligious couples, the study found. The study found no difference in divorce rates between religious and nonreligious couples who chose not to live together before marriage.

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Home Prices at 45-Year High, Pricing Many Buyers out of the Market

Home prices are at a 45-year high, pricing many buyers out of an historic seller’s market, new data published by CoreLogic show.

Annual home prices were 18% higher in October of this year than they were last October, and were also the highest recorded in the 45-year history of a Home Price Index published by the global property company.

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Fauci Urges Americans to Disinvite Unvaccinated Family Members from Holiday Gatherings

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Director Dr. Anthony Fauci has urged Americans to disinvite unvaccinated family members from their holiday gatherings as the fast-spreading COVID-19 Omicron variant surges nationwide.

‘We’re dealing with a serious enough situation now that if there’s an unvaccinated person, I would say, ‘I’m very sorry, but not this time. Maybe another time when this is all over,” said Fauci in an interview with MSNBC on Tuesday night.

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Department of Defense Silent After Lawyer Told Judge it Had ‘Adequate Supply’ of Unavailable Pfizer Vaccine

The Department of Defense (DOD) declined to comment on whether it had any of Pfizer’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved vaccine called Comirnaty, after one of its lawyers told a federal judge the department had Comirnaty on hand. 

“We don’t have anything for you on this,” a DOD spokesman told The Star News Network by email on Wednesday. 

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Top Harvard Professor Found Guilty of Lying About Payments from China

A prominent Harvard professor was found guilty Tuesday of lying about his ties to China, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Charles Lieber, a scientist in Harvard University’s chemistry and engineering departments, was found guilty on six counts of lying related to his work at the Wuhan University of Technology, the WSJ reported.

Lieber was first arrested by federal authorities in January 2020 and charged with making false statements regarding his participation in the Thousand Talents Plan, a Chinese recruitment program that aims to foster foreign academic talent. The Department of Justice (DOJ) alleged that Lieber was paid by the Wuhan University of Technology (WUT) “$50,000 USD per month, living expenses of up to 1,000,000 Chinese Yuan (approximately $158,000 USD at the time) and awarded him more than $1.5 million to establish a research lab at WUT.”

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Biden Says Fully Vaccinated Can Feel Free to Celebrate the Holidays, but Unvaccinated Face Hospitalization and Death

During a speech Tuesday afternoon, Joe Biden said fully vaccinated Americans should feel comfortable celebrating the holidays with their families, while warning unvaccinated Americans that they are at a higher risk of ending up in the hospital and dying. Biden repeatedly urged vaccine holdouts to get the jab, saying it is the patriotic duty of every American, and stressing that the shots are “free.”

Biden announced that starting next month, insurance will start covering at-home COVID tests, and the government will provide free tests to those who don’t have insurance. He also said the government would set up emergency testing sites in COVID hot spots around the country.

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California’s New Congressional Map Bolsters Its Democratic Majorities

Gavin Newsom

California’s citizen redistricting commission finalized a new congressional map late Monday that puts every Democratic incumbent in a seat that President Joe Biden won by at least 10 points.

The independent commission’s maps also put most of California’s Republican incumbents in more competitive districts. And while Democratic Reps. Alan Lowenthal and Lucille Roybal-Allard’s districts were merged to accommodate California losing a House seat, both are retiring in 2022.

“This is a good map for Democrats,” J. Miles Coleman, an associate editor at Sabato’s Crystal Ball, told the Daily Caller News Foundation, noting how the new map could even “put Trump-won seats in play, depending on the year.”

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Commentary: Five Times Campuses Ruined Holidays in 2021

two people with Santa hats looking at Christmas tree

Woke and leftist ideologies often target traditions and celebrations around holidays, particularly those that pertain to Christianity and American identity. 

With 2021 coming to an end, Campus Reform has compiled a list of the top five instances of colleges and universities ruining holidays on campus.

1. Colleges celebrate Valentine’s Day with ‘Sex in the Dark’

Multiple colleges hosted a question and answer “Sex in the Dark,” a virtual Q&A event with health experts, just in time for Valentine’s Day. 

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Commentary: Why I Stopped Donating to Harvard, My Alma Mater

The statue of John Harvard, seen at Harvard Yard

This year, for the first time since graduation some two decades ago, I did not donate to either of my alma maters. Like many of you, I have become disillusioned with the illiberalism on many college campuses and could no longer support them with an annual gift. While higher education has historically tipped to the political left, the gap has widened in recent decades. Analyzing data on faculty ideological leanings, the American Enterprise Institute reported that “in less than 30 years the ratio of liberal identifying faculty to conservative faculty had more than doubled to 5.” 

At Harvard, where I attended graduate school, the faculty political imbalance is particularly striking. According to a 2021 survey by The Harvard Crimson, the college newspaper, out of 236 faculty replies only 7 people said they are “somewhat” or “very conservative,” while 183 respondents indicated that they are “somewhat” or “very liberal.” A similar problem plagues my undergraduate college, Bowdoin. 

The absence of my meager donations won’t matter to the colleges I attended, each of which has billions of dollars in endowment money. But big alumni donors at some leading universities are using their influence to improve free thought and inquiry on college campuses. 

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Pennsylvania Gov. Wolf Vetoes Education-Transparency Bill

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) this week vetoed legislation that would have directed school districts to publish their curricula online.

State Rep. Andrew Lewis (R-Harrisburg) sponsored the bill to provide a “standardized, simple and user-friendly” means for residents to review the general lesson plans and the titles of textbooks to which children in their districts are subject. New or revised plans would have had to appear online within 30 days of their approval. The representative has observed that many parents have publicly voiced frustration about their inability to ascertain their kids’ curricula ahead of time, with some speaking to him directly about the issue.

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Michigan School District’s Equity Summit Includes Privilege Checklist, Encourages Political Activism

A Michigan public school district held a “21 Day Equity Challenge” that encouraged student activism, along with a list of microaggressions and a privilege checklist, according to a report from the Young America’s Foundation (YAF).

Farmington Public Schools told students and their families to come up with a “personal action plan” on the 21st day of the challenge, according to the YAF report. Some suggestions including joining “a Black Lives Matter or an affiliated protest” and or donating to “bail efforts supporting people arrested for protesting against injustice.”

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Parents of Two Wisconsin College Students That Died from Fentanyl Overdose: ‘It’s a Public Health Crisis’

The parents of two Wisconsin college students who died from fentanyl overdoses are speaking out, calling it a “public health crisis.” The two students who died in unrelated incidents were freshmen, living in the same dorm at the University of Wisconsin (UW) Madison. 

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Carjacked Pennsylvania Congresswoman Pushed for ‘Criminal Justice Reform’

The Pennsylvania congresswoman who was the victim of a Wednesday carjacking has a long history of advocating for far-left “criminal justice reform” policies. 

“I’m coming right now from a hearing on criminal justice reform and what we can do to address some of these issues of mass incarceration, which have, you know, plagued our society and overtaxed our prisons over the last couple decades,” Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon (D-PA-05) said in March of 2020. 

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Commentary: Progressives Need to Stop Trying to Convert Teachers into Political Propagandists

If there was any message that came out of the November 2021 elections that was loud and clear for everyone to hear, it was this one: school districts should stop indoctrinating children on their race politics. Well, evidently not everyone got that message yet.

Case in point: Farmington School District in Southeast Michigan, which recently sponsored a “21 Day Equity Challenge” targeting “adults in the Farmington/Farmington Hills community” — presumably, this primarily means teachers and administrators. While the program is ostensibly intended to facilitate a better understanding and appreciation of “the very diverse population within our own community,” the content is loaded with political messaging.

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Virginia Unemployment Drops to 3.4 Percent

Virginia’s unemployment rate fell by 0.2 percentage points in November, which brings it to 3.4%, according to numbers recently released by the Virginia Employment Commission.

Over the last year and a half, unemployment has been steadily decreasing in the state, dropping at least 0.1 percentage points every month in the last year and a half. The lower unemployment trend coincides with the government rescinding COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, which had initially caused a massive spike in unemployment.

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Michigan Secretary of State Rules Whitmer Did Not Violate Law with Excessive Campaign Contributions

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson on Tuesday resolved a campaign finance complaint against Governor Gretchen Whitmer, ruling the governor did not violate campaign finance laws.

The original complaint, filed by the Michigan Freedom Fund, alleged that Whitmer used threat of a recall to collect campaign donations beyond the established individual limits. However, no recall attempt materialized into a credible challenge, making the donations illegal.

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Uncertainty Surrounds Distribution Status of FDA Fully Approved Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine in Florida

A spokesperson for the Florida Department of Health (FDOH), responding to an inquiry by The Florida Capital Star related to COVID vaccines, said he was unsure if any of the Food and Drug Agency (FDA) fully approved COVID vaccine -Comirnaty – was being distributed in Florida. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Comirnaty in August.

The FDOH spokesperson said he was aware of the continued use of the experimental version of the Pfizer vaccine.

Though Pfizer has shipped Comirnaty to the European Union, the vaccine’s availability in the U.S. is unclear.

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Mankato Schools Vote to Allow Extra Pay for Non-White Teachers

The Mankato School Board voted unanimously earlier this month for a policy that may grant additional pay exclusively to non-white teachers.

The board is chaired by Jodi Sapp, who previously came under fire for requiring concerned parents to dox themselves in order to comment on school matters. Under her leadership, the board voted to amend district policy so that non-white teachers only may receive “additional stipends” to become mentors to other non-white colleagues. The new policy will also have the district “placing American Indian educators at sites with other American Indian educators and educators of color at sites with other educators of color.”

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Multiple Ohio Hospitals Postpone Elective Surgeries in Response to Rise in COVID Cases

Multiple hospitals throughout Ohio have postponed elective operations due to the rise of coronavirus cases across the state.

According to the healthcare providers, the decision to postpone some operations will free certain resources in order to combat positive cases.

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Florida Juvenile Justice Official Backed Critical Race Theory, Walks Back Previous View

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) recently appointed Eric Hall to be the new head of the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice and his doctoral-level dissertation from 2014 has some scratching their heads.

According to POLITICO, Hall was a previous endorser of Critical Race Theory (CRT) when he wrote his final work while at the University of South Florida. Hall described CRT as a good “framework” for the public education system to engage is racial disparity discussions.

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Feds Say Gambling-Addicted Georgia Public School Teacher Stole $240,000

Federal officials say that a Columbus, Georgia public school teacher who was addicted to gambling stole $240,000 from various nonprofits as well as from one of her former employers. Trenna Denise Trice, 59, pleaded guilty to wire fraud Monday. This according to a press release that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Georgia published this week.

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Minnesota Gov. Walz Tests Positive for COVID-19

Gov. Tim Walz announced Tuesday via Twitter that he and other members of his family have tested positive for COVID-19.

Gus, who is vaccinated, had “some sniffles” over the weekend, tested negative for COVID-19 with a rapid test and then tested positive, the governor said in a video message on Twitter.

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Commentary: Great American Stories Such as ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’

Bert and Ernie

This week in 1946, “It’s a Wonderful Life” was screened for the first time at the Globe Theatre in New York City. Audiences weren’t quite sure what to make of the film, even though it starred Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed and was directed by Frank Capra. Perhaps the economic jeopardy of life in Depression-era small towns was still all too real. Or maybe the specter of sons and husbands returning from the front reminded audiences of how many American fighting men had not come back from Europe or the Pacific.

Stewart, the leading man who portrayed small-town savings-and-loan owner George Bailey in Capra’s movie, was such a charismatic leading man that when studio executive Jack Warner heard in 1965 about Ronald Reagan’s plans to run for governor of California, he quipped, “No, no! Jimmy Stewart for governor. Ronald Reagan for best friend.”

But casting in movies, as in life, can be deceiving. It was something of an in-joke, for instance, to have Jimmy Stewart play the older brother who flunks his Army physical in “It’s a Wonderful Life” and can’t go to war. In real life, Stewart and Frank Capra both enlisted in the military after making “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” together in 1939. The Italian-born Capra, then in his 40s, produced an evocative series of films for the military called “Why We Fight.” Stewart did his part, too, and then some. After winning Best Actor for his role in 1940’s “The Philadelphia Story,” Stewart had become the most bankable star in Hollywood. Nonetheless, by the time Pearl Harbor was bombed, he was already in uniform, pulling duty at Moffett Field, south of San Francisco, in the Army Air Corps. By the end of World War II, Stewart had flown 20 combat missions in a B-24, become a squadron leader, been awarded a chest full of medals, and risen in rank from corporal to colonel.

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Virginia Beach School Board Votes to Continue Mask Mandate

A resolution brought before the Virginia Beach City School Board to make masks optional for students in the district failed in an 8 to 3 vote.

If passed, the measure would have allowed each child’s parent or guardian to make a decision to wear the mask each day.

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Arizona Small Businesses Don’t Want California-Style Employment Laws

Person using Apple Pay at cafe

Copper State small business owners appear to have embraced the local colloquialism “Don’t California my Arizona,” according to results of a new survey.

The Arizona chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business released its annual poll of Main St. entrepreneurs Monday. 

NFIB got responses to three questions from 247 small business owners across the state this month. 

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Federal Appeals Panel Denies Temporary Pause for Knox County Schools Mask Mandates

A federal appeals panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit ruled a mask mandate for Knox County Schools, implemented by a federal judge earlier this year, must remain in place.

The three judges denied an attempt by the Knox County Board of Education to pause the mandate while the case works its way through the federal judiciary.

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