Five in a Flash: October 6, 2017

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In today’s news: the NRA, Tim Murphy, Tropical Storm Nate, Harvey Weinstein, “Blade Runner 2049,” and college football.


NRA backs regulations on bump stocks after Vegas massacre (NY Post) – “‘The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully-automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations,’ said Wayne LaPierre, the NRA’s CEO, and Chris Cox, executive director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action, in a joint statement. . . . ‘I didn’t even know what [bump stocks] were until this week, and I’m an avid sportsman,’ House Speaker Paul Ryan said in an interview Thursday with Hugh Hewitt. ‘I think we’re quickly coming up to speed with what this is. Fully automatic weapons have been banned for a long time. Apparently, this allows you to take a semi-automatic, turn it into a fully automatic, so clearly that’s something that we need to look into.'”

Tim Murphy resigns from Congress (Politico) – “Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Pa.), the embattled anti-abortion lawmaker who allegedly encouraged his lover to terminate a pregnancy, on Thursday announced his plan to resign from office later this month – just a day after announcing his plan to retire following the 2018 election. The Pennsylvania Republican’s about-face came after House GOP leaders and senior Republicans upped the pressure on Murphy to step down. Republican sources familiar with Murphy’s thinking said the married father of one child initially believed he could weather a story in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, revealing he had sent a series of text messages to his girlfriend – a psychologist half his age – encouraging her to have an abortion. Murphy has been a strongly anti-abortion lawmaker during his 15 years in Congress.”

Tropical Storm Nate kills 20 in Central America as it heads toward U.S. (CNN) – “Hurricane and tropical storm warnings have been issued in three US states as the storm barrels northward. Seven people are still missing after the storm hit Nicaragua, the country’s vice president said. It is forecast to make landfall on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula on Friday with up to 8 inches (20 centimeters) of rain. An advisory from the U.S. National Hurricane Center said warnings had been issued for portions of the Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama coastlines, with the storm expected to hit the region late Saturday or early Sunday as a Category 1 hurricane.”

Decades of sexual harassment accusations against Harvey Weinstein (NY Times) – “An investigation by The New York Times found previously undisclosed allegations against Mr. Weinstein stretching over nearly three decades, documented through interviews with current and former employees and film industry workers, as well as legal records, emails and internal documents from the businesses he has run, Miramax and the Weinstein Company. During that time, after being confronted with allegations including sexual harassment and unwanted physical contact, Mr. Weinstein has reached at least eight settlements with women, according to two company officials speaking on the condition of anonymity.”

“Blade Runner 2049” review: a classic renewed with soulful beauty (Wall Street Journal) – “The big question in ‘Blade Runner 2049’ continues to be the one posed by Ridley Scott’s 1982 sci-fi masterpiece. Who is human, made of flesh and blood, and who is a replicant, built in a factory but able to pass for human in most respects? For those who’ve cherished the original all these years, the larger question has been whether the new film itself would be a kind of replicant, a soulless simulacrum of a visionary work of art that dared to combine a film-noir plot with startling images of a bleak urban future. The very good and surprising news is that Denis Villeneuve’s sequel is anything but soulless, let alone exploitative, though it’s longer than it should be and short on clarity; the storytelling swings between mysteriously allusive and opaque.”


Your Week 6 college football schedule Watch Grid guide to finding the best games (SB Nation) – “We’re in the second quarter of the college football schedule, the part when most of the country has already adjusted its goals and we’re just waiting for true contenders to start thinning each other out. Things can feel a little slow in early October, but fun’s always right around the corner. Below, the Watch Grid aims to sort the Week 6 schedule by likely game quality, attempting to find you one great game and at least one solid backup in each window.”


The current economic state of Africa (Business)

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Connor Mighell is a third-year law student at the University of Alabama School of Law with an undergraduate degree in Political Philosophy from Baylor University. He is a contributor at Merion West and the curator of "Five in a Flash," a weekday newsletter. His work has been featured at The Federalist, SB Nation, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Hill, The Dallas Morning News, and The New Americana.

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