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Good morning, Portland! It's just a few days until the big game—if that is at all "your thing," here are some sweet local takeout recs.
And here are the headlines!
• More than 27 million Americans have now received their first vaccine dose against the coronavirus, and vaccinations are finally picking up nationwide after an incompetently managed first couple months. Nursing homes are starting to reopen, and schools are making in-person learning plans—but we've likely still got a grisly few months ahead before achieving community immunity.
• Meanwhile... better extremely late than never? But I'd rather just buy my own masks with that $2,000 check you campaigned on, thanks!
The Biden White House is considering sending masks directly to American households. https://t.co/uvrYBbHRIs— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 4, 2021
• Here's a case study in how the virus amplifies existing power structures: Israel has been more effective in vaccinating its population than any other country, and it's seeing real results as hospitalizations and severe cases fall, especially among the elderly. The only catch? The country's vaccination program doesn't extend to Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories.
• McKinsey & Company, a high-powered consulting firm, has agreed to pay a $573 million settlement to 47 states to atone for its work helping pharmaceutical companies push opioids on patients—even as they knew people were dying from overdoses.
• An analysis from OPB shows that most police shootings in Vancouver, Washington targeted people with unmet mental health needs. (If that sounds familiar, it's because we have the same problem here in Portland.)
• The man who perpetrated the tragic hit-and-run in Southeast Portland last month has been indicted on 31 counts—including one count of murder and seven counts of attempted murder.
• Last week, Mayor Ted Wheeler announced that Dr. Markisha Smith, director of the city's Office of Equity and Human Rights, will be joining his office to serve a first-of-its-kind role: a "special advisor on racial justice and equity." Here's the Mercury's Q&A with Smith on her new role.
• Head's up: TriMet is fareless today in honor of Rosa Parks.
Tomorrow, we’ll be honoring Rosa Parks and her contributions to the civil rights movement. We will not be collecting fares.
We hope you’ll join us in taking a moment to reflect on her courageous example.
More: https://t.co/5AxE5qnR7m pic.twitter.com/F66G3FxaFg— TriMet (@trimet) February 3, 2021
• The headline says it all on this one: "Um, How Did Wisconsin Lose Track of Alleged Killer Kyle Rittenhouse, Last Seen Partying & Flashing White Power Signs in a Bar?"
• And finally: Treat yourself to some good new music today. You've earned it!