🛰 Russian space chief Yuri Borisov announced Tuesday that Russia will pull out of the International Space Station after 2024.
🇺🇦 Ukraine’s prime minister plans to ask the U.S. for free gas using the same lend-lease scheme that gives the country free guns and missiles.
🇨🇳🇮🇩 China and Indonesia will expand relations after leaders from the countries met Tuesday.
🇨🇩 A government spokesman for the Democratic Republic of Congo announced Tuesday that five protestors have been killed as anti-MONUSCO protests continued into their second day. MONUSCO is the UN peacekeeping mission in the DRC, which many perceive as ineffective.
Last Saturday, the World Health Organization declared monkeypox a global health emergency. Africa tried to tell us.
Monkeypox is not an STD, even though the West seems to have lazer focus on the fact that the first concentrations of the virus were in males who had sex with males. The smallpox-like virus is spread through close skin-to-skin contact with others. This could be through sex, but it doesn’t have to be. Africa could tell you that too.
Central and West Africa have been going through monkeypox outbreaks for years. Decades. Vaccines do exist, but they are nowhere to be found in the country.
“We know that for those countries that have some stocks [of vaccines], they are mainly reserving them for their own populations,” said Fiona Braka, lead of emergency operations at WHO Africa.
The U.S. currently has around 3,400 confirmed or suspected monkeypox cases. According to the CDC, that makes the country the current leader in known monkeypox infections. We are not at Covid-level threat here, but it’s definitely spreading.
While the disease has proven fatal in several cases in Africa (where they are still seeking vaccines), there haven’t been any deaths elsewhere.
Hopefully that won’t be another thing Africa tried to tell us.
The European Union is prepping for a full stop of Russian gas.
EU member states agreed Tuesday to a proposal that outlined the process for reducing each country’s use of gas by 15%. The reduction is voluntary for now, but there is a process for it to become mandatory in emergency situations. Such as…Russia cutting off all gas, which European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen says is a “likely scenario.” The latest signal of this is today’s expected reduction of gas flows through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to 20% capacity.
Because of the looming threat, this agreement had a super-fast turnaround. There are carve-outs and exceptions, but most of the EU supports it. Hungary was the only opposing member, which is not a surprise.
Last year, Russia supplied 40% of the EU’s gas. That would definitely be missed if it went away. This proposal will hurt, but it allows countries to voluntarily save gas when they have it for a rainy day when they don’t.
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Vending machines are a fast, convenient way to get what you need. Several U.S. colleges are taking that beyond snack food.
Emergency Contraception for Every Campus, or EC4EC, is a campaign from the American Society for Emergency Contraception to increase emergency contraception access for kids on college campuses across the country.
Along with helping to organize peer-to-peer networks, the campaign also helps students take vending machines to the EC level. Around fifteen campuses in seven states have EC vending machines now, featuring emergency contraception, condoms, pregnancy tests, and more. They’re open when students are more likely to have emergencies (like weekends and nights) and they don’t judge or charge too much.
Vending machines aren’t scary, they’re not threatening. In a country where abortion is both for a lot of people, increasing EC access can help to achieve the fewer abortions desired by everyone. Rather than go to a pharmacist who might be allowed to deny the sale of EC because of moral objections, with an EC vending machine, Plan B could be right next to a vending machine with Fritos. While there might be a time when people can deny the sale of Fritos due to moral objections, we’re not there yet.
For Americans, these may seem novel. For the Italians, not so much. Condom vending machines are easy to find in the streets of Milan, Rome, you name it.
Florida artist Chad Mize has some colorful stickers for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who recently expressed his support of child protective services investigating parents who bring kids to drag shows and strip clubs. Desantis says it’s a form of child endangerment.
The stickers depict Ron DeSantis dressed in the drag persona “Rhonda Santis,” waving a rainbow flag and saying “gay,” a reference to the Parental Rights Education Bill, which opponents have dubbed “Don’t Say Gay.”
100% of proceeds from the stickers—which are selling like Rhonda Hotcakes—will go to advocacy organization Equality Florida, the state’s largest LGBTQIA+ rights group.
Mize told Creative Loafing Tampa Bay that “Let’s Go Rhonda” yard signs could be coming soon so when you see them, now you understand the meme.