Amazon, Guns gather attention national, world news

Publishing every Friday,

Catherine Jackson and Renee Watters

Publishing every Friday, "The Top 2" recaps the two most notable and important stories from the week (Saturday-Thursday). Assistant Editor Ryan Stanley covers topics ranging from issues in the U.S. to problems worldwide. For more information on stories, refer to the embedded links within the article.

Ryan Stanley, Assistant Editor

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1. Amazon on fire with 4.6 million acres of the rainforest torched in the past seven months. Celebrities and politicians have raised concern over the issue, and criticized the Brazilian government for prioritizing the economy over the environment. Farmers set ablaze fields to clear land for agricultural activity, which resulted in 99 percent of the fires coming human involvement.

Why this matters

The Amazon is often referred to as the lungs of the Earth since it provides 20 percent of our planet’s oxygen. An estimated 390 billion trees make up the Amazon and remove carbon dioxide and other harmful gasses from our atmosphere. Since the fires started, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide emissions – two key factors in rising temperatures – have spiked.

2. N.R.A deters President Trump from taking new steps towards gun control. After two mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, killed 31 people, the public and political call – mainly democratic – to reform gun control arose yet again. 2020 Democratic candidates urged for red-flag laws and universal background checks. Initially, Trump supported “meaningful background checks”, however, chief N.R.A executive Wayne LaPierre persuaded Trump to lessen his rhetoric and revert to calling the issue a mental health problem.

It is unlikely drastic gun reform will become a reality in the following weeks.”

— Ryan Stanley

Why this matters

With Congress on their summer recess throughout August and the Senate under Republican control, it is unlikely drastic gun reform will become a reality in the following weeks. However, threats continue to the public. Since the shootings earlier this month, at least 30 arrests have been made with ties to mass shooting threats.