Top News

Enlarge this image A street in Dingle, Ireland. Teri Schultz for NPR hide caption toggle caption Teri Schultz for NPR Most international travel destinations are off-limits to Americans at the moment because of the United States' high rate of coronavirus infections and its own restrictions on incoming visitors. Ireland, however, has decided to let Americans in. Even so, U.S. travelers heading to Ireland may not get the traditional Irish greeting of a "hundred-thousand welcomes." There's a perception that Americans are resistant to wearing masks and are refusing to follow Ireland's rule to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival. JLisa Rowland, a dual Irish-American citizen, says people frequently brought that up to her while she was vacationing off the coast of Donegal, northwest Ireland, where — she emphasizes — she spent two weeks in isolation. "I actually heard quite a bit from friends and relatives that there were Americans running around down south," she says, "and they were pretty pissed off because [the Americans] are not quarantining." Anecdotes like that led chef J.P. McMahon in Galway to announce his restaurants would require international customers to provide their date of entry into Ireland to show they weren't breaking quarantine by dining there. Americans have long made up much of his clientele. Now one of his restaurants gets "hate email" for serving them, McMahon wrote in The Irish Times last month. "I never thought I'd see the day where I would be in the position, as a chef and restauranteur, to consider refusing Americans, or other foreigners, entry into my restaurants," he wrote. "But this is what some in our industry are now calling for. On the door of one restaurant I have read the words: 'No British or American Tourists.' Is this the new normal?" Last night a group of people from Texas dined @cavagalway. We have no way of knowing if they just arrived and should be self-quarantining. Staff very uncomfortable. We need a decision on this particularly if people are coming from places with high cases.https://t.co/kxDyaaAwib— Jp McMahon (@mistereatgalway) July 12, 2020 But the concern may be disproportionate to the actual number of Americans availing themselves of the privilege. Figures for U.S. visitors in Ireland between January and June of this year dropped by almost three-quarters compared with the same period last year, according to the Irish Central Statistics Office. That's a huge economic blow to the country, which usually earns millions of dollars a year from U.S. tourists. At this time of the summer, the southwestern town of Killarney would typically be teeming with Americans. But as of late July this year, Deros Tours manager Denis Spillane said he hadn't had any U.S. bookings. "There were some reports that planeloads came in from Texas," he said, "but I haven't seen them around. Not in Killarney." Margaret O'Brien, who works at Great Southern, one of the town's most popular hotels, says usually three out of four rooms are occupied by U.S. visitors. Not this summer. "We are missing the Americans greatly," she sighs, saying she'd been downtown talking to some of the horse-cart drivers, "jarveys" for the jaunting cars, and they said the same: "missing the Americans." Spillane says since U.S. visitors are the "bread and butter" of Irish tourism, he's basically given up for this year. "We'll be delighted to see the Americans back," he said, "but when it's safe to come back." Enlarge this image Idle horse-drawn carts in Killarney, Ireland. [...]
Fri, Aug 07, 2020
Source: Headlines -NPR Category: TOP NEWS
Enlarge this image Jerry Falwell Jr. delivers a speech during the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images hide caption toggle caption Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images Jerry Falwell Jr., a prominent evangelical ally of President Trump's, is taking "an indefinite leave of absence" from his positions as the president and chancellor of Liberty University in Virginia. The move comes days after Falwell received criticism for posting a photo to social media that showed him with his pants unzipped alongside a woman who is not his wife. In a brief statement, Liberty University said members of its board of trustees had met Friday and asked Falwell to step down from his positions "effective immediately," and that Falwell had agreed. Falwell did not immediately respond to requests for comment from NPR. Falwell faced criticism this week from both conservative and liberal commentators after posting the controversial photo to his Instagram account. Meghan McCain, daughter of the late Republican Sen. John McCain, tweeted, "How is this Jerry Falwell Jr. photo even real? Also if you're running the largest Christian university in America maybe don't put photos of yourself on social media with your pants undone on a yacht - with random women in bad wigs. So gross, so hypocritical." Falwell told the Lynchburg, Va., radio station WLNI on Wednesday that the photo, which was later removed, was taken in "just in good fun" during a costume party on vacation. He said the woman in the photo was his wife's assistant. "It was weird," Falwell told the interviewer. "She's pregnant, so she couldn't get her pants zipped. I had on a pair of jeans I hadn't worn in a long time, so I couldn't get mine zipped either. So I just put my belly out like hers." Falwell said the woman is a "sweetheart" and expressed regret about embarrassing her. He said he'd "apologized to everybody" and promised to "try to be a good boy" from now on. Falwell is the son of the late Rev. Jerry Falwell, who founded the evangelical Christian Liberty University and the conservative Moral Majority movement that rose to prominence in the Reagan era. Falwell Jr. was among the first prominent evangelicals to endorse Donald Trump during his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. Let's block ads! (Why?) [...]
Fri, Aug 07, 2020
Source: Headlines -NPR Category: TOP NEWS
Enlarge this image Former Vice President Joe Biden, seen here at a speech in July in Delaware, has apologized for suggesting the African American community is not diverse. Mark Makela/Getty Images hide caption toggle caption Mark Makela/Getty Images Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden sought to clear up comments he made earler this week that suggested the African American community is mostly not diverse. His comments came during a virtual interview published Thursday morning with journalists from the National Association of Black Journalists and National Association of Hispanic Journalists. In response to a question from NPR's Lulu Garcia-Navarro about whether Biden would engage with Cuba if elected president, Biden said yes and went on to contrast the diversity of the country's Latino community with that of the Black community. "By the way, what you all know but most people don't know, unlike the African American community with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes about different things. You go to Florida, you find a very different attitude about immigration in certain places than you do when you're in Arizona. So it's a very different, a very diverse community," he said. NEW: Biden draws distinction between diversity within Black and Latino communities, telling @NPR's @lourdesgnavarro that “unlike the African-American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes.." pic.twitter.com/ZbWmVZTFFL— Yahoo News (@YahooNews) August 6, 2020 Biden said later that day, in a series of tweets, "in no way did I mean to suggest the African American community is a monolith - not by identity, not on issues, not at all." Earlier today, I made some comments about diversity in the African American and Latino communities that I want to clarify. In no way did I mean to suggest the African American community is a monolith—not by identity, not on issues, not at all.— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) August 7, 2020 "Throughout my career I've witnessed the diversity of thought, background, and sentiment within the African American community. It's this diversity that makes our workplaces, communities, and country a better place," Biden continued. "My commitment to you is this: I will always listen, I will never stop fighting for the African American community and I will never stop fighting for a more equitable future." It's not first time Biden has had to backtrack comments on the Black community this campaign. In May, he told Breakfast Club host Charlamagne Tha God, "If you have a problem figuring out whether you're for me or Trump, then you ain't black." His campaign later said the remarks were made in "jest." President Trump told reporters he thought Biden's comments Thursday were "very insulting." "Joe Biden ... totally disparaged and insulted the Black community," he said. Trump has repeatedly claimed he's done more for the Black community in this country than any other president. But the majority of Black voters in polls say they will not be voting for Trump come November. It was the support from Black voters in the South Carolina primary that revitalized Biden's campaign and catapulted him forward as the Democratic party's presumptive nominee. Let's block ads! (Why?) [...]
Fri, Aug 07, 2020
Source: Headlines -NPR Category: TOP NEWS