The Daily Moth 3-22-2019

March 23, 2019

Special Counsel Robert Mueller Completes Report; Pipe Bomb Suspect Pleads Guilty; Tayla Harris Photo Controversy; Facebook Stored Millions of Passwords in Plain Text for Years; Jimmy Carter Longest Living Ex-President Ever; NOAA Warns of Widespread Flooding in U.S.; Update on Mozambique Disaster; Deaf Man Killed by Train in South Carolina; “We Need More Latinx and Black Interpreters”​

Hello, welcome to the Daily Moth! It is Friday, March 22. Ready for news?




Special Counsel Robert Mueller Completes Report


The Mueller investigation is over.


Special Counsel Robert Mueller has submitted a report to Attorney General Bill Barr.


Mueller was appointed by the Department of Justice to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election almost two years ago. It is possible he has looked at obstruction of justice by President Trump.


AG Barr wrote a letter to Congress confirming the end of the investigation and that he has received a confidential report.


He said he will be able to discuss the Mueller report with Congress this weekend.


He said he will discuss internally on what other information can be release to the public. He said he is committed to as much transparency as possible.


Fox News reported that Mueller is not recommending any more indictments.


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D) said the report should be made public.


Only a very few people inside of the DOJ have read the report.


President Trump has frequently called the investigation a witch hunt. He left the White House today to go to Florida.


This will be an ongoing news story that will have many updates. I will provide updates in the future.




Pipe Bomb Suspect Pleads Guilty


Yesterday at a federal court in Manhattan, Cesar Sayoc (57) pleaded guilty to 65 criminal counts including using weapons of mass destruction and illegally mailing explosives with intent to kill or injure.


He mailed 16 improvised explosive devices (IEDS) to different people including well known Democratic politicians, CNN and actors all over the country in October.  


In those packages, he included a photograph of each person with a red target over their faces.


No one was injured and Sayoc was arrested on October 26th.


Investigators say that Sayoc targeted these people because of their history of criticizing President Donald Trump.


While Sayoc pleaded guilty, he sobbed and said, “I know that these actions were wrong and I am extremely sorry.”


He is scheduled to be sentenced on September 12 and faces between 10 years to life in prison.




Tayla Harris Photo Controversy


Over the past three days, there has been a controversy over what happened after one photo was taken during an Australia Rules Football (AFL) Women’s game on Sunday.


This is that photo.


The person is an athlete for the Carlton team, Tayla Harris (21). She kicked the first goal in that game.


After the photo was posted online, many made sexist and inappropriate comments.


On Tuesday, Australian TV Channel 7AFL deleted the photo and explained in a post that “the image attracted a number of comments, some of which were inappropriate and offensive. As a consequence we have removed the image and the comments.”


Many including Australian athletes and politicians were unhappy with 7AFL’s decision to remove the photo and accused them of running away from a problem instead of addressing it.


They have since apologized and made another post that included the photo.


The 7AFL post explained that “removing the photo sent the wrong message” and “we’ll work harder to ban trolls from our pages.”


The 7AFL post also said, “our intention was to highlight Tayla Harris’ incredible athleticism & we’ll continue to celebrate women’s footy.”


Harris said in an interview that she felt the comments was “sexual abuse on social media.”


Harris tweeted the photo with the caption, “Here’s a pic of me at work… think about this before your derogatory comments, animals.”


Harris is also a professional boxer.




Facebook Stored Millions of Passwords in Plain Text for Years


On Tuesday, the website KrebsonSecurity posted an article saying that Facebook stored hundreds of millions of Facebook users’ passwords in plain text that might have been easily accessible by 20,000 Facebook employees and vulnerable to hackers.


Some of these passwords were easily visible as far back as 2012, but the exact numbers and length of time are still not known.


Krebs got the information from an anonymous senior Facebook employee.


A Facebook software engineer, Scott Renfro, told Krebs that they found the issue in January 2019 and are currently investigating. He said so far they haven’t found any evidence that their employees took advantage of this access.


Facebook’s Vice President for Engineering, Security and Privacy, Pedro Canahuati, posted a statement that said, “These passwords were never visible  to anyone outside of Facebook and we have found no evidence to date that anyone internally abused or improperly accessed them.”


Facebook plans to alert users that have been affected, but also said password resets will not be needed.




Jimmy Carter Longest Living Ex-President Ever


Last night, former US president James “Jimmy” Carter became the longest living US president when he reached 94 years and 172 days old, surpassing George H.W. Bush before he died last November.


Cater was the 39th president and served between 1977-1981 as a Democrat.


Before he was president, he was a Georgia governor and state senator.


In 1982, he co-founded the Carter Center with his wife and in partnership with Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. It is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to “Wage Peace, Fight Disease and Build Hope.”


Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002 for co-founding this organization.


He was also the first US president to be born in a hospital.


Carter will be 95 this October.




NOAA Warns of Widespread Flooding in U.S.; Update on Mozambique Disaster   


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) said the U.S. is likely to see historic and widespread flooding from now until May.


NOAA said 200 million people are at risk for flooding in their communities when the water from major flooding in the Midwest flows downstream.


It is now the spring season, so there will be rains and snowmelt, which will increase the risk for severe flooding.


In Mozambique, there is devastation everywhere from severe flooding from Cyclone Idai. CNN reported that there are about 300 to 400 bodies lined up on a road.


Flood waters have caused rivers to burst their banks and create an “inland ocean” that has overwhelmed several villages.


Red Cross and Red Crescent said the destruction is worse than they imagined and that there would be deep humanitarian needs in the coming weeks, including the risk of disease outbreak.


Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi said there could be 1,000 or more people dead.




Deaf Man Killed by Train in South Carolina


NBC 10 news in South Carolina reported that a deaf man, Kenneth Zeigler (59) was struck and killed by a train on Thursday morning.


The Lexington County Coroner said he was walking on the railroad tracks when the train approached from behind him and that that there were auditory warnings.


Zeigler’s cousin told NBC 10 that he has been deaf since birth and did not react to those alerts. She said she doesn’t know why he couldn’t feel the vibrations.


The Lexington Sheriff’s Department tweeted an image of a freight train stopped on its tracks with crews working around a raised red blanket.


They have launched a death investigation.




“We Need More Latinx and Black Interpreters”



Hello, I watched a vlog on Facebook that went viral with over 60,000 views plus over a thousand shares.


The person who created the vlog is Nikita Williams and this is her name sign. Her Facebook username is Philly Meanie Diamond. I’ll sum up her vlog. She noticed that when Black and Latinx Deaf people express anger, cuss or show attitude through predominantly white hearing interpreters - they often cannot convey our emotions or say what we want to say in voice interpretation. They aren’t supposed to do that. What’s going on and why is that happening? Some of those interpreters struggle to understand our cultural signs. Some of them say they cannot utter swearing words due to religious reasons, but is that appropriate for them to say?


If they continue doing this, then what’s the point of their jobs as ASL interpreters?


I’ve put together a video clip, take a look.



For example, I was on a videophone call with this one person. I was venting at that person with some attitude. Know what the interpreter was doing? The interpreter was talking calmly in voice interpretation. I was like, “No! Are you saying what I’m saying?!”


Like, for example, I said bad words repeatedly. Know what the interpreter did? Just whispered into the phone…without saying the bad words! If you cannot translate all the words that I’m signing then do not do this job! Find another career! These are my words and I wanted to say these things! I wanted you to translate that! If you can’t do that, then what are you doing here?!



I reached out to Nikita about her vlog. She said she didn’t think the video would’ve attracted this much attention on Facebook. She said she made the vlog because she was frustrated about how this white interpreter did not voice exactly what she was saying and instead changed her wordings which angered her. She said the purpose of the vlog was to call out white hearing interpreters and demanding that they voice out the exact words the signers say. They don’t need to sugarcoat their words. Also, she wants to recognize that there is not enough Black, Latinx, Asian and LGBTQ interpreters which we need more of. Because they are able to understand Deaf people from these communities and the cultural signs they use. She hopes that, in the future, she can attend conferences to train interpreters on cultural signs that Deaf people of color use. Since we tend to come up with new signs, she doesn't want interpreters making assumptions when they don’t really know those cultural signs. The point is…enough is enough.



I’m going to need everybody to encourage Black hearing people, those who know some sign language, to go to school and get certified…or a diploma so they can be interpreters!


Because some of those white interpreters won’t interpret!


They won’t say what I say!



Deaf people of color have those conversations often. We see a serious need of more Black, Latinx and Asian interpreters because many white hearing interpreters don’t understand our cultural signs. They can't do culturally accurate voice interpretation for us. There are three possible reasons that I’ve picked out of a very long list. First, it’s ignorance. Either they do not know, they have never seen before or they are clueless.  Secondly, it’s fear. When we express ourselves that way, they’ll panic then are not able to interpret. Three, discomfort. They’ll make mistakes in voice interpretation and adjust wordings at their comfort.



It doesn't just apply to me! Everybody else too has to endure this mess!



I looked at the comments under her vlog. I stumbled upon this comment by this Black Deaf person who said that one of the biggest problems with ASL interpreting training programs is that their curriculum are very Eurocentric and never include or emphasize translating accurately for culturally diverse backgrounds especially AAVE (African American Vernacular English). That’s why many Black and POC interpreters struggle to pass national certification exams that are also designed for Eurocentric. When they do pass, they become a part of a group composed of 85% white hearing interpreters.



We need more Latinx interpreters...and more Black interpreters! Because those interpreters will understand us!



I’ve been thinking about how there can be more POC interpreters. I’ve reached out to POC interpreters to discuss how to address this. They shared a lot of factors so I’ve picked out four that I want to share with you. One, it costs money to go to school to become an interpreter. In order to be a certified interpreter, a person must have a minimum BA degree. POC are generally less likely to have a 2 or 4 years degree than their white counterparts. Second, let's not forget that most in the ASL interpreting field is white. It can be real uncomfortable for a POC student entering ASL interpreting training program and sitting in a room full of white folks. Three, when ASL is offered in high schools, it is typically at more affluent schools. Which as we all know, are typically predominantly white. In poor and low-income schools, there is lack of exposure to ASL. Four, there are mostly white faculty in ASL interpreting training programs.


Additional Information and Reading:


Persistence of African-American/black signed language interpreters in the United States: the importance of culture and capital by Erica West Oyedele


Expanding the collective narrative: exploring the experiences of American Sign Language/English interpreters of Asian heritage by Christine Nakahara




That is all for this week. Thank you for watching “The Daily Moth.” Have a wonderful weekend and stay with the light!




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