In the Know: May 13, 2016

“This action is about a great deal more than bathrooms. This is about the dignity and respect that we accord our fellow citizens. It’s about the founding ideals that have led this country, haltingly but inexorably, in the direction of fairness, inclusion, and equality for all Americans.” Attorney General Loretta Lynch, announcing the Department of Justice would sue the state of North Carolina over HB2 (the law enacted in March mandating people in public agencies use the bathrooms consistent with recorded sex at birth and not with gender identity)

Nation
Later this month, President Obama will become the first sitting U.S. president to visit Hiroshima.

The U.S. Marine Corps has allowed two female service members to join the infantry, marking the first time women will hold jobs in the combat force.

Congress unanimously passed a bill Monday to remove the last pockets of archaic racial terminology (such as “Oriental” or “Negro”) from federal law.

The April 2013 fire that engulfed a fertilizer plant in West, Texas, and killed 15 people was set on purpose, federal investigators announced Wednesday.

World
Italy has passed legislation legalizing same-sex civil unions—it’s the last country in Western Europe to do so.

Brazil’s interim President Michel Temer told Brazilians to have “confidence” following a vote to suspend and put on trial his predecessor, Dilma Rousseff. And the implications are looming for the host country of the Olympics this summer.

A former Russian official says he developed a doping cocktail that he mixed with liquor and provided to dozens of Russian athletes… athletes who won a whole lot of Olympic medals.

Politics
Is Facebook suppressing politically conservative content?

Obama administration plans to issue a sweeping decree telling public school districts to allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that match their gender identity.

Election 2016
West Virginia and Nebraska went to the polls this week, chalking up wins for Bernie Sanders in West Virginia and Donald Trump in both states.

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Trump met Thursday morning at the Republican National Committee headquarters to discuss “unifying.”

Hillary Clinton announced that, if elected, she would institute a limit on child care costs, capping them at no more than 10 percent of a family’s income.

And what do women really think of Trump?

Business
Breaking news: Instagram has changed its icon.

Google is banning ads for payday lenders (and similar services), and the new policy “is designed to protect our users from deceptive or harmful financial products.”

Health
The Food and Drug Administration is re-evaluating its definition of what counts as a “healthy” food.

Almost everyone in large cities in poor and middle-income countries faces excessively high air pollution, a growing problem that is killing more than 3 million people each year and “wreaking havoc on human health,” the World Health Organization said Thursday.

Women’s Affairs
Mother’s Day is a beautiful celebration, but for some, it can also be a painful reminder. Sheryl Sandberg’s heartbreaking, honest, and important Mother’s Day post acknowledges that “Before, I did not quite get it. I did not really get how hard it is to succeed at work when you are overwhelmed at home.”

Pope Francis told a gathering of about 900 heads of women’s religious orders that he supports studying whether women can become deacons. (The Roman Catholic Church does not allow women to serve in ordained ministry.)

 

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