Squiz Today / 27 June 2022

Squiz Today – Monday, 27 June

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Squiz Today Podcast

Getting your week on track. 

Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“Jimmy has such an incredible relationship with the Australian public, and I know he’s never taken that for granted.”

Said Matt Gudinski, boss of Jimmy Barnes’ recording label Mushroom Group, after the anniversary redo of his 1992 album Soul Deep topped the ARIA charts thanks to big vinyl sales. Beating out Drake’s Honestly, Nevermind, the legendary rocker’s got a few screams in him yet…

Tears and cheers for America’s abortion rights teardown

Thousands of abortion rights supporters and anti-abortion activists took to the streets of Washington DC and major cities across America to have their say about the US Supreme Court’s decision on Friday to overrule the landmark Roe v Wade case, eliminating the constitutional right to abortion. The move will neutralise federal rights and powers and turn the states into the battlegrounds for reproductive rights. Yesterday, President Joe Biden’s spokeswoman said he considers the ruling “extreme”, but he “respects” the Supreme Court and is looking into what action he can take to restore abortion rights, including unilateral executive orders.

In 1973, the Supreme Court said American women had a right to seek an abortion before the point at which the fetus can survive outside the womb – these days, that’s around 23 weeks. The Roe v Wade case came about when a Texan woman known as ‘Jane Roe’ went up against District Attorney Henry Wade. The case went all the way to the Supreme Court (like our High Court…), and it ruled in Roe’s favour, agreeing that the state had violated her constitutional right to privacy when she was prevented from getting an abortion. Since then, there have been many legal challenges, including Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization – a case from Mississippi where its only abortion clinic sued state officials, including Thomas Dobbs, who says he has nothing to do with it… The clinic said a state law banning abortion after 15 weeks was unconstitutional. A draft opinion on the case was leaked a couple of months ago – and on Friday, a decision made abortion laws the responsibility of the states.

The decision means abortion services are now banned in 9 states. In total, it’s expected that about half of America’s states will have bans or other limits on the procedure, while 21 states will allow clinics to remain open. It’s left many women to wonder if they can go interstate for the procedure as some anti-abortion groups push for federal laws to prevent that. They also want to block abortion pills, which account for 54% of all US terminations. Speaking of further legal changes, some worry the overturning of Roe v Wade could trigger the repeal of other protections established on similar legal grounds. They’re talking about racial/ethnic minorities, gay people and others – something that several Supreme Court justices flagged on Friday. The next step for abortion rights supporters – to get laws through Congress, and that ain’t going to be easy

Want the background to all this? Check out this #SquizShortcut.

Health World News

Squiz the Rest

US Congress passes gun law reform

…is America’s most significant gun violence reform in decades that President Biden signed into law on Saturday. He said his thoughts were with the families of shooting victims he has met over the years, including those in Uvalde, Texas. “Their message to us was ‘Do something.’ How many times did we hear that? ‘Just do something’ … Today we did.” The new laws passed late last week by the US Congress will toughen background checks, prevent domestic violence offenders from owning firearms, and help state authorities take weapons from people deemed to be dangerous. Most of the US$13 billion accompanying it will help fund mental health and school safety programs. Getting it done required bipartisan cooperation that wasn’t on the cards until a recent series of mass shootings. “God willing, this is gonna save a lot of lives,” Biden said.

World News

Russia takes a key city

Russia has taken control of the eastern Ukrainian city of Severodonetsk, with the last of Ukraine’s troops ordered to leave when it became impossible for them to defend their positions. It was one of the last major strongholds in the area. Russia now has its sights set on the city of Lysychansk – its fall would see all of Luhansk under Russian control. It’s a mainly Russian-speaking region that’s been a priority for President Vladimir Putin. Luhansk and the Donetsk region make up the Donbas – an industrial area occupied by Russian-backed separatists since 2014. ‘Liberating’ the Donbas was a key justification for Putin’s invasion of Ukraine when he launched the operation in February. The question lingers if he will call the war off if Russia gets control of the Donbas or if he will use it as a base to go harder. The latter option is what Russia went for overnight as the G7 leaders’ summit kicked off in Germany. The invaders have targetted cities across Ukraine, with the capital Kyiv copping the worst of it.

World News

Keep your symptoms at home

As Australia continues to record thousands of new COVID cases daily, officials are warning that Omicron subvariants are proving to be pesky… BA.4/BA.5 are set to become the major strains in our big cities before too long. Authorities say they don’t believe there’s any difference in disease severity, but it is likely to increase cases and hospital admissions. “This is because the strain has a greater ability than BA.2 to evade immunity provided by vaccination and earlier COVID-19 infection,” said Victorian Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton. As we head into the guts of winter, medicos have asked those eligible for a booster to get it. And they have told people with symptoms to stay at home because it’s not OK to get a negative RAT test and head out saying “Oh, it’s not COVID, it’s not the flu. I’m OK to be around people,” said the Australian Medical Association’s Queensland president Maria Boultan.

Australian News Health

NSW levels the score

They had to go across the country to do it, but NSW shone in Perth last night, taking out rugby league’s State of Origin’s game 2 against Queensland 44-12. The Blues prevented the Maroons from adding to their total in the 2nd half as they surged ahead on the scoreboard – that was down to the controversial sin-binning of Queensland’s Felise Kaufusi, one of their best players. He was given his marching orders for a ruck infringement. Maroons coach Billy Slater said fatigue did his team in after playing a man down for 10 minutes, but he won’t use it as an excuse for the loss. It’s now onto Brissie for the decider in a couple of weeks. And in Canberra on Friday night, the Blues beat the Maroons 20-14 in the one-off women’s State of Origin. NSW’s Isabelle Kelly was the star of the night. The series moves to 2 games from next year.


Mate, check out our Aussie values…

Depending on your age, your take on Aussie values could be different to those older and younger than you… A nationally representative survey of 1,535 residents and 500 residents born outside Australia who speak a language other than English, the Australian National Values in 2022 study by Havas Labs/YouGov found honesty, equal opportunity and freedom to be our top 3 values. That was consistent across all generations, genders, family situations, locations and whether born in Australia or overseas. After that, older generations pointed to mateship, nationalism, security and the rule of law. And Millennials/Gen Z’ers picked creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship, achievement and intellectualism. Poor old Gen X is stuck in the middle, just like they always are. One thing that’s different about them: “They were the first generation who had seen their mothers entering the workforce, so they’re really passionate about gender equality in the workforce.” We’ll take that…

Australian News

Apropos of Nothing

Further to the Westminster Dog Show, where the best of the breeds rise to the top, the world’s ugliest dogs have now had their time to shine. And the winner is [drumroll please…] Mr Happy Face. With his wonky head, sticky-outy tongue and hairless/pimply body – it’s hard to tell if he lives up to his name…

If you’re looking for a new hobby, ‘mermaiding’ is all the rage… Participants say gliding under water, pretending to be half-human and half-fish, is “meditation in motion.” How fin-tastic…

What would you do if you were a bacon brand to celebrate your 100th birthday? Bottle it… Yep, a new bacon-scented fragrance is a gender-neutral scent that the US-based smokehouse says will “expand the sensory experience of our bacon”. Mmm bacon…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

8.00pm (AEST) – Tennis – Wimbledon First Round – London

PTSD Awareness Day

Start of Heart Failure Awareness Week (until 3 July)

Small Business Day

Birthdays for designer Vera Wang (1949), filmmaker JJ Abrams (1966), actor Tobey Maguire (1975) and reality star Khloe Kardashian (1984)

Anniversary of:
• the publication of the first women’s magazine, the Ladies’ Mercury (1693)
• the world’s first ATM installed in London (1967)

Squiz the Day

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