7 Things: Asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 is rare, Confederate symbols fall, Decatur PD under scrutiny for old case and more …
7. Church of the Highlands can’t help public housing residents
- Birmingham’s Church of the Highlands was providing multiple services to residents of the Birmingham Housing Authority, but that relationship was ended when it was discovered that Pastor Chris Hodges was committing and apologizing for the unforgivable crime of liking social media posts by conservative activists Charlie Kirk.
- Some of the posts he liked included posts showing President Donald Trump receiving an award with Muhammad Ali and Rosa Parks and comparing him to Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, President Barack Obama playing golf when Michelle Obama was urging people to stay home and another post referring to the coronavirus as the “China virus.”
6. GoFundMe for Birmingham business stopped
- The co-owner of Parkside Café, Michael Dykes, in Birmingham recently said in a message to employees that George Floyd was a “thug,” while he expressed his frustration with the city curfew due to the protests and riots over Floyd’s death in Minneapolis, and now a GoFundMe for Parkside has been stopped.
- Some of the Parkside employees resigned after seeing Dykes’ message, including Lacey King, who said that this is “just one example” of “the evil texts I’ve received from [Dykes] over the years.” The GoFundMe was originally organized by Candace Owens to help the business amid the controversy, but GoFundMe stopped the fundraiser since it seemed “to be in support of hate, violence, harassment, bullying, discrimination, terrorism, or intolerance of any kind.”
5. Campaign rallies coming back
- Within the next 14 days, President Donald Trump is planning to continue holding 2020 presidential campaign rallies, which had been put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic. Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said, “Americans are ready to get back to action and so is President Trump.”
- Recent polls have shown that support for Trump is trailing former Vice President Joe Biden, but as the most recent poll was done by CNN, Trump responded with a tweet saying, “CNN Polls are as Fake as their Reporting.” He added that in 2016, there were the “Same numbers and worse, against Crooked Hillary. The Dems would destroy America!”
4. March case under criticism after video is made public
- In Decatur, a business owner, Kevin Penn, called the police to report a robbery and let them know that he was holding the robber at gunpoint, but when police arrived, Penn was punched in the face for not obeying police orders. While this incident occurred on March 15, it’s facing new criticism as the video was made public recently.
- Decatur police Officer J. Rippen, according to court records, wrote that Penn “refused to obey lawful commands to put down and back away from a firearm while officers were attempting to investigate a robbery.” Penn stated, “I’m not going to put my gun down.” It has not been made clear if the suspected robber was ever charged with a crime.
3. Confederate plaques being removed from University of Alabama campus
- At the University of Alabama, there are three Confederate memorial plaques that are being removed and relocated to a “more appropriate historical setting,” as decided by the Board of Trustees of the UA System and UA president Stuart Bell.
- The university has also put together a group of trustees that will review building names on campuses, including the University of Alabama at Birmingham, the University of Alabama flagship campus in Tuscaloosa and the University of Alabama in Huntsville. This comes after the university Student Government Association requested that some buildings on campus be renamed.
2. Removal of Confederate monument in Madison County could be paid for
- The Tennessee Valley Progressive Alliance has offered to pay the $25,000 fine that Madison County could face if they remove the Confederate monument in Downtown Huntsville, saying that “it’s worth paying the fine to remove this racist symbol from the heart of the community.”
- The group has said that they’re “ready to write a check to the Madison County Commission to reimburse taxpayers for this fine.” This comes as many places across the country are facing calls to remove Confederate statues as people protest the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
1. Now the asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 is “very rare”
- The World Health Organization has come out and said that asymptomatic spread of the coronavirus is “very rare,” which contradicts the earlier narrative surrounding the virus that it would be difficult to keep numbers of infection down due to asymptomatic spread.
- Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, the head of WHO’s disease and zoonosis unit, said “From the data we have, it still seems to be rare that an asymptomatic person actually transmits onward to a secondary individual.”