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The Week Magazine

The Week Magazine October 2, 2020

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The Week makes sense of the news by curating the best of the U.S. and international media into a succinct, lively digest.

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United States
The Week Publications, Inc.
$9.03(Incl. tax)
$116.19(Incl. tax)
48 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
editor’s letter

“Of course, it’s 2020.” That was the first thought that entered my mind last week when a news alert lit up my phone announcing that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had died. That the country would now be subjected to a brutal and divisive battle over her replacement seemed a perfectly natural development in a year that has thrown up a succession of anxiety-inducing news stories. The year kicked off with the U.S. and Iran teetering on the brink of war, following the assassination of Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani by an American drone and retaliatory Iranian missile strikes on U.S. bases in Iraq. The impeachment trial of President Trump began days later, and a deadly new respiratory disease crept inexorably westward from China. Soon the world was in lockdown,…

5 min.
republicans race to fill ginsburg’s seat

What happened Just days after the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, President Trump prepared this week to announce his nominee for her seat and Republicans appeared to have lined up the votes needed for a speedy confirmation. Trump, who said he’d name his pick Saturday, pushed for a vote before Election Day, citing the possibility that a dispute over mail-in ballots might reach the Supreme Court. “We need nine justices,” he said. “You need that with the unsolicited, millions of ballots they’re sending.” Any doubts that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell could get 51 votes to confirm Trump’s nominee ended when only two of the 53 Senate Republicans—Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska—said they’d oppose a confirmation vote. Democrats had called on Republicans to honor…

3 min.
u.s. hits a grim pandemic milestone

What happened The U.S. surpassed 200,000 coronavirus-related deaths this week, days after President Trump publicly challenged the Centers for Disease Control’s scientific advice on masks and its timeline for a Covid-19 vaccine. Trump said CDC director Robert Redfield had been “confused” when he told Congress that a vaccine likely won’t be “fully available” until the summer or fall of 2021. The president insisted that a vaccine could be approved as soon as next month, with 100 million doses ready by the end of the year. Concern about the political pressure being exerted on the CDC grew after the agency published and then removed new guidelines warning that the virus can be transmitted via respiratory aerosols—tiny particles that can linger in the air—as well as by larger respiratory droplets that fall quickly…

1 min.
it wasn’t all bad

A Connecticut teen’s heroism saved a family from a burning car. Justin Gavin, 18, was on a walk when he saw an SUV on fire. He immediately ran to the vehicle, which had rolled to a stop. He helped the mother out of the car first, then opened the back door and pulled out her three kids, ages 1,4, and 9, moments before the flames engulfed the car. “I just felt like if I was in that situation, I would want somebody to help me out,” Gavin said. “I guess my instincts took over.” When a North Dakota farmer had a heart attack, his neighbors teamed up to help him harvest his crops. While Lane Unhjem was harvesting his wheat and canola, the combine caught fire. Unhjem went into cardiac arrest…

3 min.
election 2020: trump’s plan to nullify mail-in votes

Beware the “Red Mirage,” said Trip Gabriel in The New York Times. That’s what pollsters are calling the “doomsday scenario” for Democrats—and our democracy—on election night 2020. Polls show that about half of Democrats, who are more wary of the coronavirus, plan to vote by mail in the presidential election; only 18 percent of Republicans say they’ll mail in ballots. This makes it likely that, absent a Joe Biden landslide, President Donald Trump will hold the lead when polls close on election night, with millions of Biden votes tied up in slower-to-count mail-in ballots. Trump has been “pushing denunciations of mailed-in votes for months” and has already made it clear that he will declare victory when the polls close—and insist that any uncounted votes at that point are fraudulent and…

1 min.
good week/bad week

Good week for: Virtual reality, after TV viewers heard Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz get showered with boos during the Eagles’ blowout home loss to the L.A. Rams, despite there being no Philly fans in attendance. SportsIllustrated.com praised sound engineers for “ensuring a more authentic experience for the fans at home.” Rustic chic, after fashion house Gucci debuted faded denim overalls with fake grass stains on the legs, selling for $1,400 a pair. Dairy farmer Lauren Gitlin, 40, told the New York Post that the grass stains should be “more knee-centric,” and that Gucci “should add s--- smears as well” for maximum authenticity. Puppy love, with a new study showing that a puppy’s heart rate increases by around 46 percent when it hears the words “I love you” from its owner. Bad week for: Bragging,…