Hurricane Irma Pounds Caribbean Islands, Peta Murgatroyd’s Partner for DWTS Season 25, Salvador Dali Paternity Test, Wildfire Caused by Teens Throwing Firecrackers, Trump Makes Deal with Democrats on Harvey Relief and 3-Month Extension on Debt Limit and Gov’t Spending, Interview with ASL Interpreter and CODA “Dreamer,” Deaf Pizza Hut Delivery Driver Carjacked in Indianapolis
Hello, welcome to the Daily Moth! It is Wednesday, September 6. Ready for news?
This early morning, Hurricane Irma blasted through Caribbean islands of Barbuda, Antigua, St. Martin, and St. Barthelemy. A video of the scene showed extremely strong winds (clocked at 155 mph) and rain that was blowing vertically, thrashing trees and buildings.
There are reports of serious damage (even with strong government buildings), ripped roofs, flooding from a storm surge of 8 feet, and no electricity on the islands.
There are two reported deaths and we will know more when the storm passes and people are able to assess the damage.
Now there are hurricane warnings for the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, the Turks and Caicos, Haiti, and southeastern Bahamas. While in Cuba and central Bahamas there is a hurricane watch.
As I’m signing this, the hurricane is passing over the British Virgin Islands and will pass north of Puerto Rico.
Now forecasters say the hurricane, as it approaches Florida, will weaken down to a Category 4 or 3 (but still very dangerous with wind speeds ranging from 110 to 155 mph) and shift northwards when it approaches the Florida Keys on Sunday. It is possible it will make landfall somewhere in South Florida, or it could travel just east of the Florida coast approaching the Carolinas, or even move west of Florida into the gulf.
People living in the Florida Keys were ordered to evacuate staring tonight. Restaurants, hotels, and businesses on Key West’s famous Duval Street are mostly closed down and shuttered.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott said people should not sit and wait for the storm to come — because it is extremely dangerous, deadly, and will cause devastation — telling people to get prepared right now and to not ignore evacuation orders.
President Trump declared an emergency in Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico, freeing up more federal resources.
UPDATE: There is now a third hurricane, Katia. It is expected to make landfall in Veracruz, Mexico.
Here’s three news briefs:
1) Today the cast of the new season of Dancing with the Stars was revealed. Naturally I’m curious of who Peta Murgatroyd, who was Nyle’s partner, is paired up with. She’s going to be dancing with Nick Lachey, a singer who’s most famous for being in a former boy band 98 Degrees.
What is funny is that Nick’s wife, TV host Vanessa Minnillo, will be dancing with Peta’s husband, Maksim. So it’s some kind of a wife/husband swap.
Check out the link to see the rest of the cast and more pictures. http://abcn.ws/2w78z03
2) Remember when the body of artist Salvador Dali was exhumed to check his DNA to see if he was the father of a Spanish woman? Results show that Dali is… not the father. He is not, in any way, related to the woman — Pilar Abel —who works as a tarot card reader and a fortune teller. So this appears the case is closed.
3) There is now a 10,000 acre forest fire in an area between Oregon and Washington. The cause for the fire? A group of teenagers who threw firecrackers down a gorge. A female hiker who wanted to swim at the Punch Bowl Falls said she saw a group of teens who were filming each other and throwing a smoke bomb in a canyon in 100-degree and dry weather. The woman said she told the group that it was dangerous, but she was ignored. Later she smelled smoke and knew there was a fire, and alerted a police officer, who took her in the passenger seat of his cruiser as he followed a van that had the teenagers in it — a 15-year old teen from Vancouver (WA) confessed.
The fire has now merged with another wildfire — for a total of 20,000 acres burnt. It is now forcing many people who live in the area to evacuate. 153 hikers/campers were trapped but safely evacuated.
President Trump has agreed with Democrat leaders’ proposal to provide aid for those recovering from Hurricane Harvey (almost $8 billion), a three-month extension of the debt limit (for the government to be able to borrow more), and a short-term three-month government spending bill that will expire in December.
Republican leaders did not want this agreement — as they preferred the extension to last 18 months — until next year’s midterm elections. They then reduced it to 6 months, but Trump supported Democrats’ three-month idea. So December will be a big month as Congress will have to vote again on the two issues.
The House passed a bill 419-3 to fund $7.8 billion in Harvey aid, it will now go to the Senate.
Now — in December — Congress will need to come together again to discuss another raise of the debt ceiling and negotiate a new spending bill. They also might have some new bills for Dreamers (DACA) and healthcare.
It appears Trump is focused on getting the Harvey aid passed and is willing to push the other issues to December.
An ASL interpreter and CODA, Victor Erives Jr, was featured yesterday on a CNN interview with Jake Tapper about how the Trump administration’s decision to rescind the DACA program impacted him — he is currently in the U.S. on a DACA work permit. I reached out to him for an interview — here it is.
Thank you for your time and sharing your story and perspectives, Victor. He mentioned the DREAM act — let me tell you a little more about this.
The DREAM stands for Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors. The DREAM act is similar to the DACA in the goal of supporting immigrant children, but it goes a step further by granting green cards to those who qualify.
It was first introduced as a bipartisan bill into the Senate in 2001 by Sen. Richard Durbin (D) Ill. That didn’t succeed, and several attempts to put it in another bills or to re-introduce the bill have failed in the years since — which is a part of the reason why previous president Obama decided to use executive authority — he said Congress never gave him a bill.
Now we’re in this six-month time frame and we’ll see if the DREAM act (or a modified version of it) can pass by March. Yesterday Sen. Durbin said he hopes this is a moment where we are forced to finally do something.
President Trump tweeted yesterday that if Congress can’t do something about DACA after 6 months, he would “revisit” the issue.
Last Saturday a Deaf Pizza Hut delivery driver, Mark Rice, was beaten and carjacked when he was delivering a pizza to a home in the Indianapolis area. He will explain what happened.
Thank you for sharing your story, Mike. He said police are still looking for the second suspect in the carjacking. As for Pizza Hut — maybe they will consider additional improvements for security for their delivery drivers — as they do not allow them to carry weapons.
That is all for today. See you tomorrow and stay with the light!