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Friday - 04/16/21
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"No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth, and no culture comparable to that of the garden."
- Thomas Jefferson 

Welcome to Bullet Points by News Bling where we give you a well-rounded dose of bias-free news in the fewest words possible so you can start your day smart. 🧐
 

POLITICS 🏛️

Biden announces troop withdrawal 

  • The President plans to completely pull American troops from Afghanistan by September 11th, 2021, the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attack against the United States 
  • The Taliban has promised to resume attacks on America if the troops do not exit by the month of May 
  • According to official figures, 35,000 American forces are being rotated in-and-out of Afghanistan, with an additional 7,000 foreign troops from the international coalition as reinforcement
     

WORLD 🌎

Queen Elizabeth II returns to duties after death of husband 

  • The royal family states they will “Undertake engagements appropriate to the circumstances” throughout their mourning period
  • The Queen and her daughter, Princess Anne, were seen in a public appearance Wednesday at the Royal Yacht Squadron sailing club in honor of the Prince’s duties as a sailor and Royal Navy Veteran  
  • Prince Phillip’s funeral will take place this upcoming Saturday, with hundreds from the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, Army, and Royal Air Force in attendance 
  • The military personnel have been rehearsing for the event, as one of the Royal Marine buglers has expressed his “Honor and privilege,” to play “The Last Post” during the service   
     

BUSINESS 💰

American Airlines prepares to expand Summer flying schedule 

  • The American Airlines Group Inc. has recognized an increase of passengers boarding planes due to the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine
  • The company plans to extend to 150 new routes if this traveling demand persists, while providing more than 90% of pre-pandemic seating capacity within the U.S.
  • According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, flying on planes is considered a “low-risk activity” if an individual has been fully vaccinated 
  • Due to the filling route networks, other airlines have also made the decision to broaden their service, as Frontier Airlines had recently announced adding eight new travel destinations available for booking 
     

TECH 📱

Facebook unveils speed-dating app

  • The platform is testing the free dating app called Spark, requiring a Facebook profile in order to participate 
  • “Spark” will use video chat as its only communication tool, while refraining from promoting public profiles. They also are promising no direct messaging features
  • As the app’s motto stands: “Video dating with kind people,” the user will cycle through a course of speed-dates that will only last 4 minutes. If the exchange succeeds, users will be granted a second date with that same person for 10 minutes.
  • The sign-up process is currently only available through a browser, as the app hasn’t yet been released for download on the Apple App Store or on Google Play
     

US 🦅

Several missing after boat capsizes in Louisiana 

  • A 129-foot boat overturned just south of Port Fourchon this past Tuesday in the midst of severe weather
  • U.S. Coast Guard officials reported that they received a distress call from the boat around 4:30 p.m., where they immediately arrived on the scene, rescuing two victims
  • Private boaters also saved an additional four victims from the water, yet the search continues for 12 passengers 
  • The vessel, owned by Houston’s Seacor Marine, was known as a “lift boat” with the primary purpose of transferring workers, oil rigs, and platforms. However, the boat currently remains overturned  
     

HEALTH ❤️ 

State of Maine experiencing influx of COVID-19 cases

  • Maine health officials have reported more than 500 new cases of the virus for two consecutive days, as the state struggles to keep up with the rapid acceleration due to the pause in the Johnson & Johnson vaccine
  • The surge has been prompted by the large number of young people who have not been vaccinated, while 45% of the new cases were among those under 30 years old based on a figure by the Maine CDC 
  • Due to the increase in cases, the number of Mainers being hospitalized for COVID-19 had increased to 98 on Wednesday, with 13 requiring a ventilator. Four deaths from the virus have additionally been reported  

EXTRA BLING ✨

  • Science 🧬. Matchbox releases new series of toy cars made from recycled materials
  • Sports ⚽. Michael Jordan chosen to introduce  Kobe Bryant to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame 
  • Arts 🎭. Brenda Song and Macaulay Culkin share photos of their new child 
  • Interesting 🔎. Washington Governor approves bill to ban for-profit prisons
  • Funny 😹. Groom attends wrong wedding venue and almost marries a stranger 


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