Friday, July 05, 2019 View this email in your browser

Sound bites: California was hit with a 6.4-magnitude quake • the UN accused Venezuela of sending death squads to murder young men • at least 80 people are missing after a migrant boat sank on its way to Europe • the U.S. FDA said that a dog’s diet might be connected to heart disease.



California felt the full force of a 6.4-magnitude earthquake yesterday – the largest to hit the state in 20 years. The quake struck near the Mojave Desert and was felt from Las Vegas all the way to L.A. Thankfully, no one was hurt, but the quake did some damage – especially in the community of Ridgecrest, which was forced to declare a state of emergency. There were rock slides, roads and buildings were cracked, water mains broke, gas lines blew, fires erupted, and powerlines went down. Not exactly good timing considering parts of the state are experiencing temps in the high 30s. 
Well, thankfully that’s over.
But is it? Experts say there’s a 50% chance the region will get hit with another, even bigger quake in the next week, with a 1 in 20 chance of it happening in the next few days. It’s a scary prospect considering California (and frankly, much of the West Coast) is overdue for the Big One – an 8-magnitude or larger quake that’s due to happen along the San Andreas Fault (i.e. the giant line where the North American continental plate and the Pacific plate meet). When this one goes off, expect devastating damage in areas located as far as 160km away. Even Canadians aren’t safe.


The United Nations is accusing Venezuela of sending death squads to murder young men. These men are arrested and shot, and the crime scenes are manipulated to make it seem like the victim resisted arrest. ICYMI, Venezuela is in the grips of a humanitarian and political crisis led by President Nicolás Maduro. In January, Juan Guaidó, head of the country’s National Assembly, declared himself interim president. 50 countries, including Canada and most of Latin America, sided with him. But Maduro wasn’t having any of it and managed to hold onto power by holding onto the military.

What’s going on in Venezuela?
Since 2015, 4 million people have fled Venezuela due to crippling inflation, high unemployment rates, and food and medicine shortages. The government is now apparently using death squads to dissuade its people from protesting and opposing Maduro. 20 families described scenes in which masked men dressed in black from Venezuela's Special Action Forces raided their homes, assaulted the women and girls, and shot the men. The UN is urging Venezuela to end the violations of human rights.


Another boat carrying migrants from Africa capsized and sank on its way to Europe. At least 80 people are missing and feared dead. Reminder: since 2015, a large number of asylum seekers have fled their homes in Africa for safe passage into Europe, often in flimsy, inflatable boats. Last year, over 110,000 refugees migrated into Europe. But European countries, especially seaside ones like Italy, Spain, and Greece, haven’t been able to manage the large number of refugees arriving at their shores. Greece and Italy recently started turning boats away.


The U.S. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has been investigating the potential link between a dog’s diet and heart disease. In its third report, the FDA said that 16 brands of dog food were more frequently connected to a potentially deadly heart condition: DCM or Canine dilated cardiomyopathy, which is a disease that weakens the heart and could cause congestive heart failure. The majority of the products studied were labelled “grain free” or had peas and lentils, and many of the brands identified are sold in Canada. In its defence, Champion Petfoods, which manufactures Acana and Orijen, argued that the FDA didn’t actually provide any scientific evidence of its findings.


Researchers at Nestlé’s R&D facility in England have created the world’s first recyclable candy wrapper for mass production. Even better, Nestlé hasn’t put a patent on the paper wrapper, meaning other companies can access the technology and reproduce it for their own products. Now, isn’t that sweet.


• Canadian tennis stars Milos Raonic and Felix Auger Aliassime are trying to keep their Wimbledon dreams alive. Both men play in third round matches today, Raonic at 6 am ET and Auger Aliassime at 11:15 am ET.

• The Women’s World Cup comes to an end this weekend with a Final match between the U.S. and the Netherlands. Set your alarm for Sunday, 11 am ET.

• New music: another Ed Sheeran collab, what else? Listen to BLOW. Post Malone teamed up with Young Thug on Goodbyes, and Dreamville finally released Revenge of the Dreamers III.

Snoop Dogg is officially on #KawhiWatch.

• Check out behind the scenes footage of the star-studded The Lion King movie.

• Check out the kids, actors, locations and music of Guava Island, Donald Glover’s upcoming Amazon short movie.

•For your weekend reads, we recommend Don’t You Forget About Me by Mhairi Mcfarlane, and City of Girls by New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Gilbert.

Share your weekday read with your weekend friends.