President Biden commits to boost global vaccination sharing commitment to 80M doses

On Monday, President Joe Biden announced that the U.S. will share an additional 20 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines with the world in the coming six weeks as domestic demand for shots drops. The doses will come from existing production of Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine stocks, marking the first time that U.S.-controlled doses of vaccines authorized for use in the country will be shared overseas and boosting the global vaccine sharing commitment from the U.S. to 80 million. Biden said at the White House, “We know America will never be fully safe until the pandemic that’s raging globally is under control.”

The announcement comes on top of the Biden’s administration’s prior commitment to share about 60 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is not yet authorized for use in the U.S., by the end of June. The AstraZeneca doses will be available to ship once they clear a safety review by the Food and Drug Administration.

The Biden administration hasn’t yet said how the new commitment of vaccines will be shared or which countries will receive them. To date, the U.S. has shared about 4.5 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine with Canada and Mexico. Additional doses of the Pfizer vaccine manufactured in the U.S. have also begun to be exported.

The U.S. has faced growing pressure to share more of its vaccine stockpile with the world as interest in vaccines has waned domestically. More than 157 million Americans have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and 123 million are full vaccinated against the virus.

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Supreme Court to take on abortion case challenging Roe v. Wade

The Supreme Court agreed Monday to hear an abortion case that could alter nearly 50 years of rulings on abortion rights, particularly with three justices appointed by President Donald Trump as part of a 6-3 conservative majority.

The court is taking on a case about whether states can ban abortions before a fetus can survive outside the womb. Mississippi is asking to be allowed to enforce an abortion ban after 15 weeks of pregnancy, but is not asking the court to overrule the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision confirming a woman’s right to an abortion, or a decision 19 years later that reaffirmed it. However, many still feel the case is a clear threat to abortion rights. Even if the court does not explicitly overrule earlier cases, a decision favorable to the state could lay the groundwork for allowing even more restrictions on abortion, including state bans on abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected, as early as six weeks.

The case probably will be argued in the fall, with a decision likely in the spring of 2022. Mississippi’s ban had been blocked by lower courts as inconsistent with Supreme Court precedent that protects a woman’s right to obtain an abortion before the fetus can survive outside her womb. The Supreme Court had previously turned down state appeals over provability abortion bans.

 

Miami Marlins release city-edition jerseys honoring Cuba’s Havana Sugar Kings

 

The Miami Marlins have always focused on Latin Americans as part of the team’s identity, and now the team – along with Nike – are unveiling a sleek new look. Developed and designed in collaboration with Nike and MLB, the Marlins’ “City Connect” jerseys are a new signature design that the team says “speaks to the legacy, culture, passion, and pride for baseball in South Florida.”  The jerseys are a homage to the Cuban Sugar Kings, a Cuban minor-league team that played from 1946 to 1960, and a tribute to that franchise’s legacy and influence on baseball across Latin America. The new red uniform is meant to capture the ‘energetic vibe’ of Latin America.

The Marlins plan to debut the new look this weekend, May 21-23, following Cuban Independence Day on May 20 and including the celebration of Cuban Heritage Night at LoanDepot Park on May 22. Fans can purchase the Marlins’ City Connect gear starting today at the New Era Team Store at the stadium and select retail locations, as well as via marlins.com/shopnike.com.

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Atlanta Braves pitcher Huascar Ynoa to miss several months due to broken hand

The Atlanta Braves’ right-handed starter Huascar Ynoa will miss several months of game time after be punched the dugout bench and broke his pitching hand following his Sunday start against the Brewers. Ynoa will be sidelined “at least a couple of months,” which means he’ll likely be out until after the All-Star break.

The Braves placed him on the 10-day IL on Monday and recalled right-hander Edgar Santana to take his spot on the active roster. Manager Brian Snitker said to reporters of the incident: “”It’s a shame. Probably nobody that feels any worse than him.”

Ynoa has been a key contributor for the Braves this season. In 44 2/3 innings across eight starts and one relief appearance, the 23-year-old Ynoa in 2021 has pitched to a 3.02 ERA with 50 strikeouts and 11 walks. In five of his eight starts, he’s allowed one or zero runs.  Ynoa has been highly productive at the plate as well.

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Ashley McBryde to hit the road in June for ‘This Town Talks’ tour

Ashley McBryde has announced her headlining This Town Talks Tour, kicking off June 12 in Roanoke, Virginia. The 37-city run will wrap up on Jan. 15, 2022 in Cleveland, Ohio. Morgan Wade, Priscilla Block, Adam Hambrick and Ray Fulcher will be offering support on the tour.

Said McBryde, “AAAAAND we’re back. I’ve been waiting so long to be able to say that. We’ve missed you all so much, there aren’t even words to do it justice. These songs were written and recorded to be sang together. Now, let’s be together and make some damn music!” McBryde will also be making her first headlining appearance at the historic Ryman Auditorium on this run with back-to-back nights supported by Lainey Wilson on Thursday, Aug. 26 and Caylee Hammack on Friday, Aug. 27.

Pre-sale tickets for McBryde’s fan-club, The Trybe, begins Tuesday May 18, at 10 a.m. local time; the Spotify pre-sale will begin Wednesday, May 19 at 12 p.m. local time. General on-sale begins Friday, May 21 at 10 a.m. local time. For ticket info, visit AshleyMcBryde.com.

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ACM Awards to return to Las Vegas in 2022

The Academy of Country Music announced that the 2022 ACM Awards will return to Las Vegas next year. The 57th ACM Awards will take place on Sunday, April 24, 2022.

The ACM Awards have historically taken place in Las Vegas, but were disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021. The decision to get back to Las Vegas marks a return to normalcy for the awards show. The awards ceremony initially scheduled for the spring of 2020 was postponed and held in the fall in Nashville. 2021’s awards, hosted by Keith Urban and Mickey Guyton, marked the second time that Music City hosted the ceremony, with historic venues including the Grand Ole Opry House, Ryman Auditorium and Bluebird Cafe each serving as venues.

More information about the 57th ACM Awards, including ticketing and hotel information, is still to be announced.

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Prince Harry, Oprah Winfrey discuss mental health in trailer for new docuseries

Apple TV+ shared a trailer for the new docuseries The Me You Can’t See on Monday, featuring Prince Harry and Oprah Winfrey. The preview shows Harry and Winfrey discuss mental health and emotional well-being. The series also features Harry’s wife, Meghan Markle, singer Lady Gaga, actress Glenn Close and others.

In one scene, Harry tells Winfrey: “To make that decision to receive help is not a sign of weakness,” he says. “In today’s world, more than ever, it is a sign of strength.” Harry and Winfrey co-created and executive produced the series.

The Me You Can’t See premieres Friday on Apple TV+. Check out the trailer at the link – here.

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Ariana Grande and Dalton Gomez are married in private ceremony

Ariana Grande and Dalton Gomez tied the knot at an informal ceremony at her home in Montecito, California, according to multiple reports.

Grande’s rep confirmed to People: “They got married. It was tiny and intimate — less than 20 people. The room was so happy and full of love. The couple and both families couldn’t be happier.”

The news comes just five months after Grande announced her engagement to Gomez, a luxury real estate agent, in December. The couple made their relationship public in Grande and Justin Bieber’s “Stuck With You” video last May.  After their engagement, sources said that Gomez and Dalton were “very in love” and had “been spending a ton of time together since getting engaged and keeping things pretty low key and private. They’re mainly keeping to themselves and just enjoying their time together.”

This is the first marriage for Grande, who was previously engaged to Pete Davidson from June to October 2018.

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2 dead, hundreds injured in bleacher collapse at synagogue in Jerusalem

At least two people were killed and more than 150 injured after a bleacher collapsed at an uncompleted West Bank synagogue on Sunday, the eve of a major Jewish holiday. The bleacher was packed with ultra-Orthodox worshippers and collapsed during prayers at the beginning of Shavuot. Paramedics had treated more than 157 people for injuries and pronounced two dead, a man in his 50s and a 12-year-old boy. The collapse comes weeks after 45 ultra-Orthodox Jews were killed in a stampede at a religious festival in northern Israel.

Israeli military said in a statement that it dispatched medics and other search and rescue troops to assist at the scene, and army helicopters were airlifting the injured.

Shavuot is a spring harvest festival that also marks the day in the Jewish calendar on which the Torah was given to Moses on Mount Sinai. It is traditionally marked with all-night Torah study and the consumption of dairy.

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Freight train derails in northwestern Iowa after bridge collapse

A Union Pacific Railroad train derailed on Sunday in Sibley, Iowa due to a bridge collapse. No one was reported as injured, though evacuations were ordered in a 5-mile radius around the scene of the derailment. In addition, emergency personnel blocked all waterways near the derailment.

Sibley is in the far northwestern corner of Iowa, about 200 miles northwest of Des Moines. Parts of the 3,000-population town were evacuated. Aerial video of the scene showed dozens of train cars in a heap, in flames, the smoke rising from the front. The train was hauling fertilizer and ammonium nitrate.

Residents not evacuating were encouraged to open their windows on both sides and position themselves in the middle of their homes as a “preventative safety measure in case one of the rail cars on fire explodes.”

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