The Christian Science Monitor : 2019-02-11

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NUMBERS IN THE NEWS 11 BILLION To share these stories, go to Estimated cost (in dollars) of the 35-day government shutdown to the US economy. About $3 billion is deemed unrecoverable. 17 Years of US involvement in the conflict in Afghanistan. Taliban and US representatives recently announced progress on peace talks. Most of those outside the city see the boys as having acted with remarkable composure in the face of provocative adult protesters – some Native American, some Black Hebrew Israelites – yelling obscenities and phrases such as “Go back to Europe!” They believe the teens were unfairly targeted by liberals, including journalists, who loathe President Trump. “What has upset me the most is the un- ethical and unprofessional behavior of the media that can destroy people’s lives,” says Jim Wilson, a parent chaperone on the trip. But in the city, which is more diverse, more poor, and more progressive and has struggled to provide services for its lowincome residents without the tax base of its suburban neighbors, the mayor has taken a strong stand against the students’ behavior as incongruent with Covington’s values. He and others are frustrated that the controversy is giving them a bad name, especially just as developers came to town to discuss a major redevelopment project seen as critical to the city’s future. “Whatever anyone thinks of this – and I happen to have a more charitable view of the kids than some other people – there’s a fair amount of resentment that here we have to shoulder the burden for the region for something we had nothing to do with,” says Steve Frank, a Republican and former city commissioner who serves on the Covington Economic Development Authority. Like many Rust Belt cities, Covington fell on hard times after the decline of the steel mills. By the late 1970s, the federal government labeled it one of America’s most distressed cities. Today, some 89 percent of public school children qualify for free and reduced lunch, and the median household income is $30,000. As recently as 2010, Covington faced bankruptcy. After years of planning and efforts to attract Millennials and the creative class to its quaint downtown – a mix of tidy brick row houses, industrial spaces, and local shops – the city had been feeling a sense of momentum. Then, this controversy erupted. But despite – or perhaps because of – the city’s long struggles, people here are resilient. “We’re going to keep moving forward,” says Michelle Williams, the African-American vice mayor. “We’re not going to let this incident slow us down one bit.” 2,000 Forest fires attributed to the infrastructure of utility companies in California over the past 3-1/2 years; the state lacks resources to fully regulate power lines. 50 BILLION BRYAN WOOLSTON/AP Dollars in liability claims against California’s Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. in the wake of the Camp fire. It declared bankruptcy Jan. 29. 5 Record number of Democratic women who have formed an exploratory committee or announced they are running for their party’s nomination for president in 2020. arrested after the collapse of dam owned by a mining company in Brazil: three mine employees and two subcontractors. The collapse left 99 people dead and 259 missing. 4-1/2 Years in prison given to Wang Quanzhang, a human rights lawyer in China. He has been in jail awaiting sentencing since 2015, when he was arrested for “subverting state power.” 4 BILLION+ Age (in years) of the oldest known rock yet discovered – on the moon. Scientists believe the rock was formed on Earth and transplanted during an asteroid collision. – Anna Tarnow / Staff Sources: Congressional Budget Office, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, CNN, NPR, Sputnik News r CHRISTA CASE BRYANT/THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR WEEKLY FEBRUARY 11, 2019 9 | PRINTED AND DISTRIBUTED BY PRESSREADER +1 604 278 4604 ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY COPYRIGHT AND PROTECTED BY APPLICABLE LAW

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