After being shot by first grader, teacher tells students: 'Run!'
New details about the first school shooting of 2023, Brazil experiences its own televised insurrection, Matt Gaetz turns the other cheek and the iPhone turns 16
Thanks for rising up on this Monday, Jan. 9, 2023. On this date in 1788, Connecticut officially became a state, Joan Baez was born on Staten Island on this day in 1941 and in 2007, Steve Jobs unveiled the very first iPbone.
Here now the news:
WOUNDED TEACHER PUT HER STUDENTS FIRST: The Washington Post has new details about what happened in the moments before and after a first grader in Newport News, Va. shot his teacher on Friday. According to the paper, students at Richneck Elementary School were in a small reading group and about to go to art when the unidentified 6-year-old pulled a handgun from his backpack and pointed it at his teacher.
“She was going to confiscate it, and that’s when he shot,” said Brittaney Gregory, whose son was in the class. “Run,” the teacher said. The children raced to another teacher's classroom area, where they stayed in lockdown. Her son, Gregory told the Post, is “still in shock.”
The Associated Press reports the first-grade teacher is Abby Zwerner, 25, according to John Eley III, a former member of the Newport News School Board. Both news organizations report Zwerner is known as a hard-working educator who graduated James Madison University in 2020, is devoted to her students and enthusiastic about the profession that runs in her family. Zwerner remains hospitalized but is now in stable condition, says the AP, recovering from wounds to her hand and to her abdomen.
WHAT ABOUT THE BOY? Other than to say the child is in police custody, authorities have declined to say what kind of altercation led to the shooting, or where he is now, citing the ongoing investigation. Police have also declined to say how the boy got access to the gun or who owns the weapon.
WHAT ABOUT HIS PARENTS? Although a juvenile judge would have authority to revoke a parent’s custody and place a child under the purview of the Department of Social Services, Virginia law does not allow 6-year-olds to be tried as adults. In addition, a 6-year-old is too young to be committed to the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice even if found guilty.
The Other Thing Everyone Is Talking About
INSURRECTION IN BRAZIL: CNN reports hundreds of supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro stormed the country's congressional building, Supreme Court and presidential palace on Sunday. Order has been restored after police made at least 400 arrests, according to CNN Brasil and a local official.
Sunday’’s insurrection followed last week’s inauguration of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who defeated Bolsonaro in a runoff election on Oct. 30. Bolsonaro challenged the election results and has not explicitly conceded. At last report he was in Orlando, Fla., where he tweeted that protesters had gone too far. Lula has vowed to prosecute both the “fascists” and “vandals” involved as well as law enforcement who failed to keep the rioters out of the government complex.
“HE HAS MY FORGIVENESS:” After appearing on Fox News, Rep. Matt Gaetz, the Republican congressman from Florida under investigation for child trafficking. tweeted on Sunday that he forgave Rep. Mike Rogers for what he described as the Alabama Republican’s “animated moment” on the House floor early Saturday morning. Rogers had started to yell at Gaetz for voting “present” on the 14th ballot, once again denying Rep. Kevin McCarthy his election to Speaker of the House. That’s when North Carolina Republican Rep. Richard Hudson forcibly removed Rogers from the aisle, even putting his hand over his mouth as he dragged him away. But now, all is forgiven.
Rogers in turn tweeted his thanks and his regret for “briefly losing my temper.” McCarthy was elected Speaker on the 15th ballot early Saturday after Republicans who had voted against him switched their votes to “present.” The House will reconvene today with the task of voting on rules for the 118th Congress, unless of course more chaos erupts first.
BOTH SIDES NOW: President Biden is in Mexico after making his first visit to the border since taking office Sunday, and angering both Democrats and Republicans. Read all about it in The New York Times.
Rest in peace
“I DON’T THINK THIS IS A CLASS FOR YOU:” A doctoral student from India taking classes at both MIT and Harvard revealed a senior Harvard professor suddenly reneged on his promise to allow her to register for his class, citing his review of her “personal website.” Her site includes her podcast and blog about sex positivity. Radhika Radhakrishnan (@so_radhikal) is a feminist researcher and attributes her denial, in part, to being a woman of color:
WELCOME, BERNIE! Congratulations to longtime transportation journalist, blogger and former broadcaster Bernie Wagenblast for coming out late last month as the woman she is. The newly-out transgender woman is the voice that riders of the New York City subways hear over the public address system, announcing stops and other information, and a friend of yours truly. Read Bernie’s story from a community news site in her N.J. hometown.
HE IS A SUPERHERO AFTER ALL: You may have heard about actor Jeremy Renner’s devastating injury on Jan. 1 involving his snowplow. But now we’re learning how he was hurt: Helping a stranded motorist, according to Screenrant: “He was helping someone stranded in the snow,” said the mayor of Reno, Nev., Hillary Schieve: “He is always helping others.” Renner, the Oscar-nominated actor best known for his role as Hawkeye in the Avengers movies, is recovering from being run over by his snowplow. He thanked fans for their support and shared a photo with his medical team, with whom he celebrated his 52nd birthday in the hospital.
Renner also stars in Mayor of Kingstown on Paramount+. Best wishes to the actor and his nurses and doctors, and let’s hope he can make a full recovery.
Thanks again for rising up with me! If you’re enjoying this newsletter, please consider subscribing and invite friends to subscribe as well. I’ll be back tomorrow with more, and until then, may your news be good news!
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