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Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Trump’s Misleading COVID-19 Comparisons to Other Countries

In a flurry of tweets and remarks, President Donald Trump continued to distort the facts on the coronavirus pandemic:

  • In a series of comments focused on the surging number of COVID-19 cases elsewhere in the world, Trump left the misleading impression that the U.S. is doing better than several countries seeing recent upticks in cases. But nearly all of the nations he mentioned still have fewer new daily per capita cases than the U.S.
  • The president said Dr. Anthony Fauci, a coronavirus task force member, was “wrong” that Europe was more successful in reducing new cases partly because countries had more restrictive lockdowns than the U.S. Instead, Trump inaccurately insisted that the U.S. has more cases because of more testing.
  • Trump repeated the misleading claim that COVID-19 cases are “up” in the U.S. “because of BIG Testing.” Cases are high because of ongoing transmission, not just because of testing. Coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx said that the recent outbreaks, unlike those in the early days of the pandemic, are “extraordinarily widespread.”

US Could Bring More Than 4,000 Troops Home From Afghanistan by Election Day: Trump

Donald Trump said the U.S. pullout from Afghanistan will resume soon, to reduce the current number of about 8,600 U.S. troops in the country to as low as 4,000 before the Nov. 3 elections.

In an interview with Axios political reporter Jonathan Swan that was filmed July 28 and aired Monday on HBO, Trump was asked, "On election day, how many troops will be in Afghanistan?"

He responded: "Probably anywhere from 4,000 to 5,000."

Trump declined to state when the next round of withdrawals will begin but said it would happen "very soon, very soon," in line with his overall commitment to an eventual end to the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan.

Previously released segments of the interview centered on Trump's denials of being aware of U.S. intelligence suggesting that Russia may have paid the Taliban bounties to kill U.S. troops.

He said the intelligence never reached his desk; Pentagon officials have stated that the intel was not corroborated.

Navy SEAL Boss Cuts Ties with Museum Over Kaepernick Dog Attack Video

Naval Special Warfare Command is suspending its support of the Navy SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida days after a video showing SEAL dogs attacking a man wearing a Colin Kaepernick jersey in a demo there went viral on social media.

The museum is conducting a review of the demonstration, which showed military working dogs attacking a man in Kaepernick's San Francisco 49ers jersey. Kaepernick famously refused to stand during "The Star-Spangled Banner," citing protest of racial inequality.

Rear Adm. Collin Green, the head of Naval Special Warfare Command, said the underlying message in the museum's video is unacceptable.

"We will revisit our relationship with the Museum when I am convinced that they have made the necessary changes to ensure this type of behavior does not happen again," Green wrote in a Monday email to his force, which was first reported by The Associated Press.

The Navy SEAL Museum did not return requests for comment. A spokesman for Naval Special Warfare Command confirmed that Green sent the message, but declined to comment further.

Green wrote that there's no indication that any Navy special operators, personnel, equipment, or animals were involved in the demonstration. While the museum is an independent nonprofit organization, he said, the Navy SEALs "have been inextricably linked to this organization that represents our history."

Navy Investigating Video of SEAL Dogs Attacking Man in Kaepernick Jersey During Demo

Navy Special Warfare Command is investigating a video that showed military working dogs attacking a target in a Colin Kaepernick jersey during a demonstration at the Navy SEAL Museum last year.

The video's caption reads "Colin Kaepernick stands in Josh gets attacked by 5 Navy SEAL dogs for not standing during the National Anthem at a Navy SEAL Museum fundraiser."

The video was originally posted to Instagram in January 2019 but started recirculating on Twitter on Sunday.

Naval Special Warfare Command said in a statement on Sunday afternoon that they learned of the video on Sunday.

Film Review: 'Black Water — Abyss’ — Killer Crocodile Sequel Feasts on Fresh Meat

The combination of claustrophobia, darkness, murky water and one big crocodile adds up to a decently scary time in “Black Water: Abyss,” Andrew Traucki’s belated follow-up to the abyss-less 2007 original he co-directed with David Nerlich. This time, the tasty humans are trapped in an underground cavern during a flash flood, making for a situation that’s unpleasant even before they discover they’ve got a reptilian company.

While perhaps not as memorable as some of the movies it might remind you of (like “The Descent” and “Pitch Black”), this is still a tense thriller that nicely exploits a formulaic nature it doesn’t quite transcend. One of the first rollouts in several countries’ newly re-opened theaters abroad, “Abyss” will be releasing to U.S. drive-ins and on-demand as of Aug. 7.

‘Ellen DeGeneres Show’s’ DJ Tony Okungbowa Says He Felt ‘Toxicity’ on Set

Tony Okungbowa, who was the resident DJ on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” for several years, has spoken up about the recent workplace misconduct allegations on the talk show, saying he experienced “toxicity” on the set.

Okungbowa shared his thoughts in an Instagram post on Tuesday, saying he stands with his former co-workers who have spoken out about alleged racism, intimidation, and sexual misconduct and harassment from executives on the show.

SEC Announces New Fall Preseason Football Practice Schedule

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama – The Southeastern Conference today announced adjusted dates for preseason football activities for SEC schools with the first allowable practice now scheduled for August 17.  The new SEC calendar provides student-athletes with more days off than required by the NCAA and fewer practices than permitted by current NCAA rules.

The new preseason calendar was developed based on recommendations of the SEC's Return to Activity and Medical Guidance Task Force.

Last week the SEC announced its intention to begin the 2020 season on September 26 as it continues to monitor developments around COVID-19.  The original start date of September 5 would have allowed for preseason football practice to begin August 7.

In the revised SEC preseason football calendar, from August 7-16 schools are permitted to conduct up to 14 hours per week of strength and conditioning, meetings and walkthroughs. 

D-D Breaux Retires After Forty-Three Seasons

BATON ROUGE – Head coach D-D Breaux is retiring after 43 seasons as the leader of the LSU Gymnastics program, she announced Tuesday.

A Letter From D-D Breaux

Breaux, who retires as the longest-tenured coach of any sport in Southeastern Conference history, has built the LSU program into a national powerhouse. Breaux will remain a part of the athletics department doing what she loves the most, being an ambassador for LSU. Co-head coach Jay Clark will take over for Breaux as just the third head gymnastics coach in school history.

As the "Dean of Coaches" at LSU, Breaux has represented the University at the highest level in the gym and in the community. She has dedicated her life to LSU and to more than 200 gymnasts she has coached over the years.

The Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation

The Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation
Founded in 1962, The Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation is the nation’s oldest and largest provider of need-based scholarships to military children. For 54 years, we’ve been providing access to affordable education for the children of Marine and Navy Corpsman attending post-high school, under-graduate and career technical education programs. In that time, we have provided more than 37,000 scholarships worth nearly $110 million.