LATEST ARTICLES

Dr. Anthony Fauci Warns U.S. Could Soon Record 100,000 Coronavirus Cases a Day

The United States is experiencing the world’s worst outbreak of COVID-19, which could soon spiral out of control unless urgent steps are taken to isolate confirmed cases and conduct contact tracing. That was the stark warning of top U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci in testimony to a Senate committee on Tuesday.

Dr. Anthony Fauci: “When you have an outbreak in one part of the country, even though in other parts of the country they’re doing well, they are vulnerable. I made that point very clearly last week at a press conference. We can’t just focus on those areas that are having the surge. It puts the entire country at risk. We are now having 40-plus thousand new cases a day. I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 a day, if this does not turn around.”

Dr. Fauci’s warning came as eight states announced single-day highs, with a record 47,000 U.S. infections reported on Tuesday. The U.S. has 4% of the world’s population but has recorded more than a quarter of worldwide coronavirus cases and deaths. In California, Governor Gavin Newsom is set to announce new rollbacks of reopenings after a record rise in new cases and hospitalizations. In Houston, hospitals have begun transferring COVID patients to other parts of Texas, as the city has become a new epicenter of the pandemic. This is Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of the Baylor College of Medicine.

Dr. Peter Hotez: “It’s very alarming. The rate of acceleration is extreme. We’re seeing daily dramatic increase, almost a vertical slope, some of the models saying that we may be at 4,000 cases a day in Houston by early, middle July. So, that would be catastrophic for the city.”

U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao Announces Nearly $800 Million in Grants to 347 Airports in 46 States and 4 Territories

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WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao announced today that the Trump Administration will award nearly $800 million in airport safety and infrastructure grants through the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to 46 states, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Marshall Islands.

“This nearly $800 million Federal investment in airport infrastructure will strengthen safety, improve travel, generate jobs and provide many economic benefits for local communities,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

A complete listing of grants (PDF) and an interactive map of airports receiving funding is available on the FAA website.

The total includes $689 million from the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) and $104.4 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act grants to equal a 100 percent Federal share.

“These 383 grants will allow airport sponsors to either begin or complete construction projects that will maintain the safety and efficiency of our national airport system,” said FAA Administrator Stephen M. Dickson.

These grants will be used for a variety of critical infrastructure and safety projects. Some of the projects include purchasing aircraft rescue and firefighting equipment, constructing runways and taxiways, repairing runways and taxiways, installing aircraft lighting and signage, conducting airport master plan studies, and installing airport perimeter fencing.

COVID-19 Fraud and Chargeback Prevention Webinar – July 7th


Chargeback Gurus, a leading chargeback and dispute management firm, is partnering with digital trust and safety provider Sift to launch a new webinar on dealing with fraud, disputes, and chargebacks resulting from the unprecedented health and economic crisis precipitated by the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. The webinar will take place at 12 PM CST on July 7, 2020, and will discuss recent trends in the fraud and dispute landscape, along with strategies merchants can utilize to protect themselves.

MCKINNEY, Texas/PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — “Whenever a major event shakes up the payments space, there’s a wave of fraud and chargebacks that follows it,” said Suresh Dakshina, President of Chargeback Gurus, who will be co-hosting the webinar along with Sift Trust & Safety Architect Jeff Sakasegawa. “March may feel like a long time ago, but merchants are still adjusting to the implications of COVID-19, and many of them are looking for help dealing with the new fraud and dispute scenarios they’re encountering.”

The webinar is designed to give merchants a better understanding of how the changes wrought by COVID-19 can create opportunities for fraud, and what they can do to protect their customers and revenue. Among the topics the webinar will cover:

Best practices on fraud prevention and chargeback management:
Insights from industry experts on new fraud and chargeback trends driven by the impact of COVID-19
How “COVID vultures” are exploiting this crisis for their own illicit gain
Updates on the dispute monitoring programs run by Visa, Mastercard, and other card networks

There will also be a live Q&A. Merchants interested in learning more about how to prevent COVID-19 chargebacks and fraud can register for the webinar for free at https://www.chargebackgurus.com/en-us/covid19-fraud-chargeback-prevention-webinar.

About the Webinar Hosts

Both companies have years of experience working with merchants ranging from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies, giving them a wide range of expertise and insight into dealing with emergent problems related to fraud, chargebacks, and related perils of the ecommerce landscape.

As pioneers in the field of digital trust and safety, Sift has been protecting businesses and their customers from bad actors since 2011, providing frictionless fraud prevention solutions that use machine learning to deliver protection that’s fast, accurate, and scalable. You can find them on the web at sift.com.

Chargeback Gurus is a global leader in chargeback management, providing strategies and solutions that directly address the vulnerabilities that lead to customer dissatisfaction and chargebacks. Their analytics and proprietary technologies not only help merchants reduce their chargeback rate and win disputes, but increase customer retention as well. To learn more, visit chargebackgurus.com.

COMMENTARY: The annexation of Palestinian territory is illegal

By Bill Fletcher, Jr., NNPA Newswire Contributor

Let’s be clear and not try to fool one another. There is no basis in international law for the planned Israeli annexation of Palestinian territory. None.

In some respects, this column could end right here. There is no further explanation necessary. Both the Israelis and the US political establishment know this. That the Israelis are copying the behavior of the US expansion west in the 18th and 19th centuries is more to the point. The US political establishment understands that the USA was constructed on the annexation of the land of the Native Americans, the Mexicans, and the blood of the Africans, all with the aim of establishing a White settler republic. That is something the US and Israeli experiences share in common.

The proposed annexation aims to drive the remaining Palestinians off their lands or place them in a Bantustan-like existence, just as the apartheid South Africans attempted in the 1970s/1980s. The Afrikaners attempted to deceive the world into believing that they were creating livable spaces for the African majority when they were creating nothing more than reservations for the relocation of the African majority. Israel aims to do much the same.

Many of Israel’s liberal supporters in the USA are tongue-tied. They cannot justify the annexation—knowing full well that it is illegal—but are terrified that there might be actions taken against the Israeli government by the USA and other governments. While they certainly have little to fear from Trump, who has gone out of his way to encourage the annexation, it is true that there is a growing awareness in Congress, and within the US public, that annexation is wrong.

The attitude of liberal supporters of Israel is akin to someone who knows that an individual embezzled money from a company, but they would rather not press charges because they believe that there is something about the person that is worthy of saving. The problem is simple: the law does not work that way, whether domestic or international.

When Russia illegally seized Crimea, there were consequences. Why should there be no consequences for the Israeli government? Why should the people of the world continue to take a pass each and every time that Israel breaks international law?

The answer is that Israel must pay a price, which is why the global movement for Boycott/Divestment/Sanctions (BDS) is so critical. If governments lack the courage and vision to penalize another country for criminal activities, then it is up to the people of the planet to take the appropriate—and non-violent—steps. This is not singling out Israel. This is identifying when activity is criminal and should be punished.

Bill Fletcher, Jr. is the executive editor of globalafricanworker.com and a past president of TransAfrica Forum.

Supreme Court Says Fast-Tracking Deportations Okay

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In a blockbuster decision, the United States Supreme Court ruled last Thursday that the government can fast-track deportations of asylum seekers without first allowing them to have their cases heard in court. This is now the clear law of the land. The lopsided ruling (7-2) is a major victory for the Trump administration, which has been relying on a law passed in 1996, permitting asylum decisions to be made without review by the federal courts.

The case before the Court involved a Sri Lanka asylum seeker, Vijayakumar Thuraissigiam, who said he had been abducted by men working for the Sri Lanka government, blindfolded, transported in a van he believed to be owned by the government and beaten senseless. Thuraissigiam is Tamil, one of the ethnic minority in Sri Lanka that has been historically persecuted.

Thuraissigiam managed to escape and fled Sri Lanka for the U.S. At the border he was questioned about his reasons for coming and was then given an expedited, or fast-track, hearing, before an asylum officer who denied his application for asylum. Thuraissigiam did not have an attorney.

The ACLU took Thuraissigiam’s case and appealed the asylum officer’s decision, arguing that the 1996 law is unconstitutional and that everyone is entitled to their day in court. The Court of Appeals agreed and the Trump administration appealed.

Although disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision, ACLU attorneys say it only applies to people seeking asylum at the border. But don’t expect the Trump administration to agree with that limited application. It is likely the Trump administration will interpret the decision more expansively and begin scheduling fast-track deportations for people already living in the country for up to two years. If it does, it could take years before a case challenging an expanded interpretation winds it way back to the high court.

OP-ED: Past Due Time for American Healthcare System to Protect Black Americans

NNPA NEWSWIRE — Because of the systematic racism that is rooted in our nation, racial disparities in American healthcare have caused illness, injury, and death in minority communities across the country. Black Americans suffer the most at the hands of the American healthcare system. Now, we are seeing COVID-19 shine a much-needed light on the harsh reality that has been plaguing an entire race for centuries.

By Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., President and CEO, National Newspaper Publishers Association

3 Powerful Ways Women Can Help Other Women In The Post Pandemic World

As COVID-19 forces changes to the economy and American lifestyles, businesses that hope to survive and thrive will need creative ways to deal with these new challenges.

And that could mean path-breaking opportunities for women, who often bring a different approach to business leadership than their male counterparts, says Andi Simon (www.andisimon.com), a corporate anthropologist, founder of Simon Associates Management Consultants, and author of the upcoming book Rethink: Smashing the Myths of Women in Business. 

Before the pandemic and economic downturn, over 50% of the U.S. workforce was women and women-owned 40% of the businesses. 

But as the pandemic disrupted the economy, eliminated jobs, and forced social isolation and remote work, women found themselves scrambling to sustain their jobs, their livelihoods, and their business operations. 

As a result, women in business and business owners were pivoting, Simon says. 

“The post-pandemic recovery is going to require clever, opportunistic innovations,” she says. “We will see a great deal of rethinking going on about who is caring for children, how to balance the work/life load, and what work is going to be like in the future.” 

Add to this the mental health impact of the social disruptions taking place, and “we can only imagine the pressures facing women, and men, as they rebuild lifestyles and restore economic vitality and growth,” Simon says.

She says she is seeing women “rising to the challenge, quickly developing new ways to help each other stabilize and regenerate their businesses and their families.”

Simon says some of the resilience comes through:

  • Networking. Both men and women use networking to make business connections but building a network may be even more important for women as they come out of isolation and the recession. Women are making connections with other women who can be supportive of their challenges, who can mentor them, and help them restore their livelihoods and their personal lives.  “Women are often criticized for not being decisive or controlling,” Simon says. “Instead, they lead through their ability to build consensus, manage their network, and engage with others.” 
  • Collaboration. There are many types of leaders and their styles shift to be situationally adaptive. “For the post-pandemic period, we expect to watch a lot of collaboration as people try to figure out how to restore their ‘new normal,’ ” Simon says. “It is more difficult for a command and control style of leadership to build trust when there is limited certainty about the right thing to do.”  She says the research is compelling that women lead better than men. “Indeed, women are said to have far better social skills building teams than men,” she says, “but when they use those skills, they don’t always achieve the respect of men.”  That is why in this emerging vacuum, women are rising to the occasion and leading others into creating the new realities. 
  • Changing how people think. Culture becomes a definer of what we value, believe, and do, Simon says.  “There is a cultural movement underway that might be hidden from view unless the media begins to build the new story for how women can create better organizations and businesses in the post-pandemic economy,” she says.  “How can we refocus our society to see that what women do is as good as, if not better than what men accomplish? There is momentum, but it is hard to sustain without strong role models, communities of women, and a media that articulates and embraces a new narrative.” 

“We are watching women smash the myths that have kept them from achieving the leadership needed in our society today and into the future,” Simon says. “It is time to ‘rethink’ what women can do and how we should enable them to do it. Our society needs it more than ever as we recover from this pandemic and restore the vitality of our economy and our cultures.”

School Choice Victory at Supreme Court Will “Advance Black Lives”

Discriminatory Blaine Amendments Denied Educational Opportunities to Families in Need

Washington, D.C. – Today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Montana’s discriminatory “Blaine Amendment” was cheered by members of the Project 21 black leadership network, who called it a major win for poor and minority parents who have been forced into failing public schools based solely upon where they live.

In many states throughout the country, school choice opponents have utilized Blaine Amendments to prevent parents from accessing government assistance when choosing private schools with faith-based backgrounds for their children.

“The justices in the majority tore down a monument to intolerance and discrimination,” said Project 21 Co-Chairman Council Nedd II, a former charter school teacher in Washington, D.C. “Since the Reconstruction era, Blaine Amendments have been used to keep children from getting the best possible education by denying their parents a true choice of schools. This victory today will do more to advance black lives than any march or protest we’ve seen in the past few weeks.” 

Blaine Amendments are found in 37 state constitutions nationwide. Vestiges of anti-Catholic bigotry first instituted during the post-Civil Way era, Blane Amendments have been used to block school choice initiatives by prohibiting pubic support of “sectarian” schools. In the case of Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue, regulators had ruled that a tax credit for donations to groups providing private school scholarships could not be used for religious schools because of Blaine Amendment restrictions. The plaintiff said moving her children to a religious school had improved their academic performances and had ended bullying problems they had experienced in public school. She argued that Montana’s use of the Blaine Amendment had harmed her children’s educational opportunities.

“Parents who pay close attention to the environment to which their children are exposed are aware that public schools are a spiritual cesspool. Blaine Amendments stand in the way of parents’ choice to protect their children spiritually and to provide them with an excellent education in a religious school free of the profanity, bullying and anti-Christian indoctrination often found in a public school environment,” said Project 21 member Melanie Collette. “The Supreme Court sent a strong message by striking down this Blaine Amendment and protecting the freedom of families who wish to send their children to religious schools.” 

In the decision, a 5-4 majority held that Montana’s application of a Blaine Amendment to stop the use of tax credits for faith-based institutions “discriminated against religious schools and the families whose children attend or hope to attend them in violation of the Free Exercise Clause” of the U.S. Constitution. In his opinion for the Court, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that government “need not subsidize private education. But once a State decides to do so, it cannot disqualify some private schools solely because they are religious.” In a concurrence, Justice Clarence Thomas added that “the Establishment Clause to its proper scope will not completely rectify the Court’s disparate treatment of constitutional rights, but it will go a long way toward allowing free exercise of religion to flourish as the Framers intended.”

“This is a start in the right direction,” said Project 21 member Marie Fischer, a former Maryland school board candidate. “Parents should not be penalized because they feel their child would receive a better education at a religious-based institution. For those who say education is a right, can’t it be that a quality education is a right?”

In an amici curiae (or “friends of the court”) legal brief  that Project 21 joined, the justices were told that “denying parents their preferred educational option simply because their desired school has a religious affiliation inflicts direct and significant injury on parents and children.” It added that “[r]eligious discrimination is particularly pernicious when it intersects with a fundamental liberty interest like directing children’s education.” The brief claimed that the government’s interest in indirectly funding a religious school is “miniscule.”

The Center for Education Reform coordinated the brief that Project 21 joined. It was written by Paul Clement, a former solicitor general of the United States. Other groups joining the brief include the American Legislative Exchange Council, Jack Kemp Foundation and Catholic Charities DC. 

Project 21 Co-Chairman Stacy Washington, a former member of a Missouri school board, added: “Almost 20 years ago to the day, in the Mitchell v. Helms decision, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote a majority opinion that held that taxpayer money could be spent to aid parochial schools. It is a sad commentary that it took the Supreme Court this long to address the rights of poor children to access the same quality of educational options that wealthy families enjoy.”

To schedule an interview with a member of Project 21 on this or other issues, contact Judy Kent at (703) 759-0269.


Members of the Project 21 black leadership network cannot comment on election issues in any way, shape or form as such behavior constitutes “campaign activity” under section 501(c)(3) of the IRS code. Please do not ask Project 21 members questions about election-related issues, and do not anticipate a response if such questions are asked.

Project 21, a leading voice of black conservatives for over 25 years, is sponsored by the National Center for Public Policy Research. Its members have been quoted, interviewed or published over 40,000 times since the program was created in 1992. Contributions to the National Center are tax-deductible and greatly appreciated, and may be earmarked exclusively for the use of Project 21.

Founded in 1982, the National Center for Public Policy Research is a non-partisan, free-market, independent conservative think-tank. Ninety-four percent of its support comes from some 60,000 individuals, less than four percent from foundations and less than two percent from corporations. Sign up for email updates here

Follow Project 21 on Twitter at @Project21News for general announcements. To be alerted to upcoming media appearances by Project 21 members, follow our media appearances Twitter account at @NCPPRMedia.

PayPal Announces $530 Million Commitment to Support Black Businesses, Strengthen Minority Communities and Fight Economic Inequality

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Funds will provide immediate financial relief, sustained support and long-term investment to expand economic opportunity for Black and underrepresented minority businesses and communities

SAN JOSE, Calif. /PRNewswire/ — On June 11, 2020, PayPal Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL) announced a $530 million commitment to support Black and minority-owned businesses and communities in the U.S., especially those hardest hit by the pandemic, to help address economic inequality. As part of its investment, the company is bolstering its internal programs to further increase diversity, equity and inclusion within the PayPal community.

“For far too long, Black people in America have faced deep-seated injustice and systemic economic inequality. Black lives matter and we need to drive transformative change. We must take decisive action to close the racial wealth gap that sustains this profound inequity,” said Dan Schulman, president and CEO, PayPal. “PayPal is uniquely positioned to help in this area, and we are committed to doing our part to address the unacceptable racial divide by advancing a more just economy and society. We’ve listened to leaders in the Black community about the challenges facing Black business owners and the support and investments needed to sustain Black-owned businesses and create long-term economic opportunity. The holistic set of initiatives we are implementing are designed to help address the immediate crisis and set the foundation for sustained engagement and progress towards economic equality and social justice.”

The commitment includes short-term, medium-term, and long-term investments in the community:

  • $10 million fund for empowerment grants to Black-owned businesses impacted by COVID-19 or civil unrest. These grants will provide direct support to business owners to cover expenses related to stabilizing and reopening their businesses. The fund will be managed in partnership with Association for Enterprise Opportunity, a leading national nonprofit expanding economic opportunity for Black entrepreneurs through its Tapestry Project. Interested businesses can apply for a grant at aeoworks.org/paypalgrant/.
  • $5 million fund for program grants and employee matching gifts for PayPal’s nonprofit community partners that are working to strengthen Black business owners by providing them with microloans, technical assistance, information, mentoring and access to digital solutions to speed their recovery from the impact of the pandemic. Local partners are best positioned to know the needs of their communities and these grants are intended to catalyze and further empower the necessary work they are doing to sustain Black-owned businesses. Initial organizations receiving grants through the fund include Association for Enterprise Opportunity, Baltimore Business Lending, Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives Micro Finance Group, Expanding Black Business Credit Initiative, Kiva, MORTAR, Nebraska Enterprise Fund, Opportunity Fund, Rising Tide Capital, Start Small Think Big, Walker’s Legacy Foundation and Women’s Opportunity Resource Center. As part of this the company will expand the PayPal Gives Employee Matching Gifts program. PayPal will match $2 for every $1 employees donate and $10 for every volunteer hour dedicated to racial and economic justice efforts in local communities, up to $500,000.
  • $500 million commitment to create an economic opportunity fund to support and strengthen Black and underrepresented minority businesses and communities over the long term, and designed to help drive financial health, access and generational wealth creation. This initiative will include bolstering the company’s relationships with community banks and credit unions serving underrepresented minority communities, as well as investing directly into Black and minority-led startups and minority-focused investment funds. Startups and investment funds are invited to express interest to the PayPal Ventures team here.

“AEO advocates for economic inclusion and works to create transformational change in the marketplace for small businesses,” said Connie Evans, president and CEO, Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO). “Now, more than ever, it’s critical to invest in Black-owned businesses, create a more equitable system and break through the barriers that have historically challenged Black business ownership and wealth creation.”

PayPal is committing $15 million to strengthen its internal diversity and inclusion programs to foster greater awareness, build equity, and support recruiting, hiring and career advancement of Black and minority employees. This also includes increased funding for the company’s employee resource groups as well as supporting community partners through pro bono work and secondments by its employees.

These initiatives build on the extensive financial health and small business empowerment programs PayPal already supports. They will add a particular emphasis on Black-owned businesses, sharpen the focus of that work, accelerate the deployment of PayPal’s resources and fuel employee engagement. PayPal previously announced the company was donating $500,000 to organizations doing meaningful work to build toward racial equality, healing and reconciliation, including the Chicago Urban League, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Minneapolis African American Leadership Forum, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, National Urban League, Repairers of the Breach and The Empowerment Network.

COMMENTARY: It Has Never Been Like This in America Before

By Roger Caldwell

As President Trump and Vice President Pence tell lie after lie, it is time for the truth. When there are catastrophic problems in every industry, and the country is being held together with stimulus money, it will eventually crash. President Trump has been a failure and criminal in business, and as President of the United States, he has been incompetent, a criminal, been impeached, and has contributed to thousands of Americans dying with the Covid-19 pandemic.

As a con man, the president has continued to lie every time he opens his mouth, and what he says today will be changed tomorrow or an hour later. When the CDC established guidelines for all the citizens to wear a face mask to control the spread of the coronavirus – he and his team refused to wear one.

It is time to hold President Trump to a higher level of accountability, and put pressure on him to resign or quit his office. As 2.5 million Americans are infected with coronavirus, and over 126,000 have died, our president has given up. On a daily basis there have been over 45,000 people being infected with coronavirus, and it has never been like this in America before.

The economy is in a depression, and the unemployment rate is the worst since the Great Depression. Democrats in Congress are fighting to extend the federal $600 weekly unemployment supplemental benefit in the Cares Act, which ends on July 31, 2020. In many states eviction notices were relaxed, and now the courts will be forced in the upcoming months to evict people who cannot pay their rent or mortgage.

Not only will Americans not be able to pay their rent, but they will not be able to pay their car note, their insurance, and buy food. The millionaire Republicans thinks that many citizens in America are looking for a hand out, and they are angry. Again, it has never been like this in America before, and 1 in every 7 Americans in the labor force can’t find work, according to “Move On.”  

“For many of us these days, it feels as if the United States has never been less united. The nation, it seems, has become irrevocably fractured along political and ideological lines – Republican/Democratic, liberal/conservative, red/blue, etc,” says Joe Pierre M.D. – Psychology Today.

With over hundreds of thousands of protesters in the streets, all over the country for 25 to 30 days, the question must be raised, “Why has America been so divided.”

Everyone is taking a side, and everyone is angry, and many believe it is time for another civil war. The current political unrest is dangerous, and racism has raised its ugly head. With the killing of George Floyd, something clicked in the American Psyche, and collectively everyone spoke in their soul, and said it was time for a change.

Again, it has never been like this in America before, because this was a diverse uprising, all colors/races, all ages, all genders, all different political affiliations and sexual orientations. Finally, racism was on the front burner, with police terror, and no one was backing down.  

The protesters say they want equal justice under the law, racial equality, a fairer distribution of wealth, and better relations between the community and police. There have been marches and demonstrations for fifty years, and maybe something is different this time. It is time for a radical change in America, and the people have the power with their vote. There are more leaders in America who are Black and diverse, who believe in change. It is time to make America, a democracy for all the citizens, and the rule of law must prevail.