President Trump Reaches Deal With Democrats To End Shutdown; FBI Arrests Roger Stone; Updates on Deaf Federal Employees Affected by Shutdown; Deaf Stockton University Student Successfully Pushes For Change in ASL Classes; Deaf Colorado Man Stops Burger King Thief
Hello, welcome to the Daily Moth! It is Friday, January 25. Ready for news?
President Trump Reaches Deal With Democrats To End Shutdown
Today President Trump, from outside of the White House, announced that he has reached a deal to end the shutdown and reopen the federal government.
Trump said he had a very powerful alternative but he is not going to use it at this time. This appears to be about an emergency declaration, Trump said he would not do this.
Trump said he would sign a bill to fund our government for three weeks until February 15th and make sure that all employees receive their back pay as soon as possible.
This short-term deal does not have funding for the border wall. This is the same deal that was offered to Republicans before the shutdown.
Trump said he has asked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to put this proposal on the floor immediately and that he would sign it.
Trump is still asking for a physical barrier on the border. He said there there would be a bipartisan group of lawmakers who will talk with law enforcement professionals on a border security package.
When the short-term spending bill gets through Congress, it would end the longest shutdown in history at 35 days.
There were several reports in media this morning that several airports on the East Coast had delays because there were not enough air traffic controllers. Today is also the second straight paycheck federal workers missed. The FBI Director Chris Wray sent a video message to FBI agents last night criticizing the shutdown as unfair and something that has made him angry.
All this put great pressure on the White House. This is a quick turnaround for Trump, as he tweeted last night that “we will not cave!”
Democratic Senate Minority Leader Schumer said they expect the funding bill to go through the Senate and the House and be signed today. He said Trump treated federal workers as hostages and that they should never have to go through this again.
House Speaker Pelosi said she is pleased there is an agreement to reopen the government and that there would be a discussion on how to secure our borders. She said she looks forward to having a bipartisan discussion going forward.
FBI Arrests Roger Stone
This morning Roger Stone, who is a longtime adviser to Donald Trump, was arrested at his home in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on seven criminal counts related to lying to Congress and investigators about his role in contacting Wikileaks, who released thousands of hacked Democratic emails during the 2016 presidential campaign.
The indictments were from the Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation.
CNN filmed FBI agents, armed with guns and wearing bulletproof vests, pounding on Stone’s door before dawn. After Stone was taken in custody, FBI agents brought out computers and other evidence from his home.
Stone was taken to a federal courthouse in Fort Lauderdale to be formally charged.
The indictment said Stone spoke with senior Trump campaign officials about Wikileaks’ releases of emails that would damage the Clinton presidential campaign.
The indictment said there was evidence that Stone emailed and texted with several people, including high-ranking Trump campaign officials, about plans for additional releases of emails, when they would be sent out, getting prepared for it.
The indictment said Stone lied to Congress by saying he had no emails or text messages about Wikileaks. It also accuses Stone of trying to tell a witness to lie to investigators.
I watched live news coverage of Stone as he came out of the federal courtroom to a swarm of reporters.
He flashed the “Nixon victory sign.”
[Video clip of Stone flashing the Nixon victory sign]
Stone used to be an aide for President Nixon. Stone is known for having tattoo of Nixon’s face on his back.
Stone told reporters that “the only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.” He said he is falsely accused of lying to Congress. He said his charges have no relation with Russian collusion.
Stone said he would plead not guilty to those charges and said this is a politically motivated investigation. He said he would never testify against the president.
Reporters asked him if he would ask Trump for a pardon, and he did not answer, instead saying Trump is doing a great job. Crowds chanted, “Lock Him Up!”
Fox News explained that the indictment does not charge Stone with conspiring with Wikileaks or Russians, but only accuses him of lying to Congress about his contacts with Wikileaks to Congress and investigators.
President Trump tweeted that this was the greatest witch hunt in the history of our country, that there was no collusion.
Today was big day in the Mueller investigation, and it is yet another person associated with Donald Trump and his campaign that is facing serious legal trouble
Updates on Deaf Federal Employees Affected by Shutdown
Three weeks ago, I shared two anonymous deaf federal employees’ stories of how they were affected by the shutdown. I recently asked them for an update and I will share.
We know that today Trump announced a deal to end the shutdown. Their stories were shared with me yesterday and I will go ahead and share.
The first person works in the Department of the Treasury and has been required to go to work without pay.
She said things are not financially good for her. She said one of her sons came home and gave her his money because he knew she had to work without pay, and that it hit her really hard because they don’t deserve this.
She said her department recalled more people to come to work. She said employees seemed to be stressed out all of the time and that there are disagreements in the office and some people aren’t working but playing around because they don’t get paid. She said some people skipped work for a couple of days.
She said she had to request to be off from work based on hardship because she is running out of money. She said she is very disappointed with Trump and Democrats because they can’t sit down, negotiate, and get the government open.
The second person works in the Department of Commerce. She has been furloughed without pay, she has been staying at home all this time. She previously said she was not worried about money because she has plenty saved up.
She said she is getting bored with Netflix. She said she has started to look for houses to buy, but don’t feel confident to put an offer because she doesn’t know when her next paycheck will come in.
She said she feels like the political standoff between Trump, McConnell, and House Democrats is a waiting game to see who blinks first, and whoever does will have a major disadvantage for future negotiations.
She said she hopes legislation will be passed preventing future shutdowns due to lapses in appropriations. She hopes for a change.
Those are the two stories. Thank you both for sharing. Both should expect to get their paychecks soon now that there is a deal.
Deaf Stockton University Student Successfully Pushes For Change in ASL Classes
Stockton University in New Jersey decided to move their ASL classes from the Health Sciences department to the languages department. This change was made at the end of the fall semester.
This was after a Deaf student, Jenna Finan, an unnamed deaf student, and a Deaf professor, Sara Nović pushed for the change early 2018. They started a petition that had just under 6,000 signatures.
“The Daily Moth” did a story about this in February. Finan said she wanted this change because ASL is not a Health Science related problem, but is a language with its own rich history and is a part of cultural diversity. She said students who did not major in Health Sciences couldn’t take ASL classes. She pushed for a change and it’s happened.
A local newspaper, “The Current” published a story yesterday about the change in ASL classes. It explained that ASL is now considered a world language and placed under their School of Arts and Humanities.
Finan told the newspaper that in the past, “ASL would be looked at under a microscope and from a health or ‘speech disorder’ perspective, but she said that ASL can be used in all work, not just in the medical field.”
Finan mentioned "The Daily Moth” and said after the news was posted, the Deaf community showed their support, that people from all over the globe signed the petition.
Stockton officials informed Finan in December about the change in ASL classes, saying there would be four classes offered under the School of Arts and Humanities.
Congratulations to Finan and others who pushed for this change, and it is inspiring to know that we had a part in supporting them with the “The Daily Moth” report and your signatures on the petition.
“The Current” Article: http://bit.ly/2TdzzHB
Previous Moth Coverage: https://www.dailymoth.com/single-post/2018/02/27/The-Daily-Moth-2-27-18
Deaf Colorado Man Stops Burger King Thief
There was a viral video of a Deaf man from Colorado, Mick Gardner, who said he stopped a man who was robbing a Burger King in Denver. This happened on January 17. He was there with his girlfriend, Justice and his three-year old stepson, Jaxon.
I did an interview with him. First, I will show you the video he posted.
[Video Clips of Gardner holding down a man, who is holding a bag of cash and struggling to get away. Gardner holds him until police officers arrive.]
You can see the struggle. You could also see cash flying out and the responding police officers. Gardner will explain what happened and why he decided to intervene.
Gardner: My stepson needed to go to the restroom. We were finished eating at BK and went to the restroom and we were ready to go home after. I didn’t expect to see someone at the door wearing a purple mask with a hoodie. I thought it was a joke. That area, Colfax Street, is known for drugs or homeless people. I thought it was just a joke and the person looked harmless. I watched him and saw him speaking aggressively at the cashier. The black employee leaned forward and listened. I thought it was normal and they were friends. But there was something wrong. The man slapped down an advertisement sign for a burger. So I started recording with my phone. My instinct told me it was meaningless to film it with my phone so I put it away and watched him. I saw the woman — the assistant manager was away on a break — the cashier who was working with the money just gave it up. I looked and was like, “you think this is nothing?” I moved to block the door to not allow him out. I was watching to see if he touched the money. Once he touched it, I went ahead and grabbed him. That’s how. I didn’t think if he had a gun or a knife, I have guts. It doesn’t matter if I’m hurt, it is important that others are safe and no money is stolen. Leave them alone.
Gardner explained that other people filmed it and sent him the videos that he posted. I asked him what were the reactions from the Burger King employees, customers, and police.
Gardner: As I was holding him down, there was a black female officer, I don’t know her name, who pointed a gun at us. She was not sure which one of us it was. We were both white men wearing black hoodies. She was not sure. When I looked at a Burger King worker, he mouthed, “Let go!” So I let him go. He ran away and police knew that he did it and tackled him. Police then told me to move away and I did that. I don’t know what they did with him.
When I was holding him, everybody was shocked. Nobody helped. They never saw a deaf person — it is always a hearing person — they never saw a deaf person doing this. They were like, “Deaf can do this?” I said yeah, it doesn’t matter. We’re the human, we’re the same. Deaf or hearing, we’re the same, except for our ears.
I saw that many people called him a “hero.” I asked him what he thought of that.
Gardner: Yeah, thank you to everybody who called me a hero. Yeah. It feels good. But I like to prove that Deaf can do it. The community can support each other. Look at the fact that Deaf can. Most Deaf people tend to ignore hearing people. I’m like, no, come on, look at this, we can. I’m not a prideful person who claims to be a hero. I want to help people. They see that Deaf can do it. That’s all.
Gardner said Burger King and the police said they would contact him, but have not so far.
I called the Burger King restaurant, and the person who picked up the phone said he was not there and couldn’t comment.
I reached out to the Denver Police Department for comment, and did not get an immediate response. If they respond, I will post it in the comments.
That is all for this week. Thank you for watching “The Daily Moth.” Have a great weekend and stay with the light!