Nashville DA won’t enforce new bathroom sign law | National News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Nashville’s top prosecutor said Monday that he will not enforce a newly enacted law that requires businesses and government facilities open to the public to post a sign if they let transgender people use multiperson bathrooms and other facilities associated with their gender identity.

“I believe every person is welcome and valued in Nashville,” Nashville District Attorney General Glenn Funk said in a statement. “Enforcement of transphobic or homophobic laws is contrary to those values. My office will not promote hate.”

Funk’s office clarified that this refusal to enforce “transphobic or homophobic laws” specifically included the first-of-its kind measure signed by Republican Gov. Bill Lee earlier this month.

The move, along with the flurry of other anti-transgender laws approved by Lee, has sparked alarm among LGBTQ advocates. Many have decried the latest measure as discriminatory and said the required signs are “offensive and humiliating.” The law will go into effect July 1.

However, questions have remained about how specifically it will be enforced.

Republican Rep. Tim Rudd, who sponsored the legislation, told a legislative committee in March that the bill “does not provide any fines or penalties at this point,” and the amended version passed by that committee became law. Rudd has also said that the law could be enforced by people filing lawsuits or district attorneys asking a judge to force businesses to comply.

Yet Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference President Amy Weirich argued that the language in the new law “doesn’t speak to anything having to do with enforcement.”

“The way it’s written, I don’t see anything that allows or provides me the responsibility or right to go to civil court and ask a judge to enforce it,” said Weirich, Shelby County’s district attorney.

Lee did not have a strong reaction when pressed by reporters Monday on Funk’s refusal to enforce the bathroom sign law.

“I think his decision will be his own,” he said. “I signed the law; it’s his decision how he wants to respond to it.”

Lee’s response was markedly different than when Funk announced in September he would not enforce a new law that required abortion providers to tell their patients it may be possible to reverse the action of abortion medication half-way through the procedure. Funk said at the time he believed the law was unconstitutional.

Without naming Funk, Lee’s office tweeted that, “A district attorney purposefully disregarding current, duly enacted laws by the legislature is a grave matter that threatens our justice system and has serious consequences.”

———

Associated Press writer Jonathan Mattise contributed to this report.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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Tennessee bathroom law sponsor now says it has penalties | National News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The sponsor of Tennessee’s new law requiring businesses and government facilities to post signs if they let transgender people use the bathrooms of their choice now says owners and officials who refuse could face up to six months in jail — a penalty that went unmentioned during legislative hearings and debate.

The question of who would do the enforcing remains murky as well.

Republican Rep. Tim Rudd, who sponsored the bathroom sign bill, said a class B misdemeanor could apply to those who won’t post the signs within 30 days of being warned they’re breaking the law. That seems to contradict what Rudd told fellow lawmakers in March. He said then that the bill version that would become law “does not provide any fines or penalties at this point.”

He has since argued that he was telling the truth because while the bill itself was silent about any penalty, it was inserted into a chapter of existing building code law that already penalizes a number of violations. This law broadly defines such violations as a class B misdemeanor for non-compliance with such things as smoke alarm requirements and air conditioning regulations. Such crimes are punishable by the jail time and a $500 maximum fine. The Chattanooga Times Free Press first reported on the criminal penalties.

The Tennessee law, approved with nearly all Republicans in both chambers in favor and almost all Democrats opposed, was signed by Gov. Bill Lee on May 17. It’s one of five new state laws this year that have drawn backlash from LGBTQ advocates, including the Human Rights Campaign, which decried the sign mandate as discriminatory and “offensive and humiliating.” The American Civil Liberties Union is recruiting businesses as possible plaintiffs in a likely lawsuit. The requirement begins July 1.

This week, Rudd said he did intend for the law to carry the criminal penalty and only “answered the question he was asked” during the committee meeting in March. When the AP asked him earlier this month about enforcement and penalties, Rudd did not mention the criminal penalties, saying district attorneys could ask a judge to force compliance and judges could seek “whatever judicial remedies the court deems appropriate” if a business won’t post the signs, or people could file civil lawsuits.

In the March committee meeting, Rudd also said there would be “no state department overseeing this right now because there is no fine” and said it would be possible “someone could press charges, then it would be up to a sheriff and a DA to investigate.”

“So all the questions I got — ‘does your bill provide any penalties?’ — well, no, it’s already in code. I wasn’t asked that question,” Rudd told The Associated Press.

Democratic Rep. Bill Beck, who asked Rudd about what penalties would exist, said he misled his fellow lawmakers.

“It was a misleading statement to the entire, full State Committee, some 20 representatives,” Beck, who opposed the bill, told the AP. “Very discouraging to pass

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Tennessee to mandate bathroom signs about transgender use | National News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee will become the first state in the United States to require businesses and government facilities open to the public to post a sign if they let transgender people use multiperson bathrooms, locker rooms or changing rooms associated with their gender identity.

Republican Gov. Bill Lee signed a bill Monday that represents a first-of-its-kind law, according to the Human Rights Campaign, an LGBTQ advocacy group that decried the bill as discriminatory and said the required signs are “offensive and humiliating.” The law will go into effect July 1.

Lee, who is up for reelection next year, had previously been mum on whether he would sign the bill. Instead, he told reporters earlier this month that he always had “concerns about business mandates” but was still reviewing the bill.

Lee’s approval came just a few days after he signed legislation that puts public schools and their districts at risk of losing civil lawsuits if they let transgender students or employees use multiperson bathrooms or locker rooms that do not reflect their sex at birth. It was the first bill restricting bathroom use by transgender people signed in any state in about five years, according to the Human Rights Campaign.

Lee also signed a different proposal this year that bars transgender athletes from playing girls public high school or middle school sports.

Republican statehouses have been awash in culture war legislation across the country this year, particularly focusing on the LGBT community. Tennessee has been the front lines on that fight, with civil rights advocates pointing out that only Texas has filed more anti-LGBT bills in the country.

Yet, to date, there has been no big, tangible repercussion where bills have passed targeting transgender people, unlike the swift backlash from the business community to North Carolina’s 2016 “bathroom bill.” In Tennessee, the bills are becoming law despite letters of opposition from prominent business interests.

According to the bill signed Monday, the required sign outside the public bathroom or other facility would say: “This facility maintains a policy of allowing the use of restrooms by either biological sex, regardless of the designation on the restroom.”

However, questions remain about how the law will be enforced and what, if any, consequences will stem from ignoring it. The law doesn’t spell out fines, penalties or any other mechanism to ensure the signs are put up when required.

Republican Rep. Tim Rudd, the bill’s sponsor, said no state department will oversee compliance with the law. Instead, Rudd said, local district attorneys could seek a court order to require a facility to post the sign. If an entity refused to comply, “it would open the door for whatever judicial remedies the court deems appropriate,” Rudd said.

Additionally, it’s possible that noncompliance could lead to civil liability, Rudd said.

“Whether you’re a man or woman, don’t you want to know who might be waiting on the other side of a bathroom door when you go in?” Rudd said in a statement. “Everyone has a

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Air National Guard Volunteers Assist at Alaska Kitchen > U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE > Story

Since mid-August, Alaska Air National Guardsmen assigned to the 176th Force Support Flight Sustainment Services, who are local to the Matanuska-Susitna Borough area, have been volunteering their time to assist the Five Loaves, Two Fish Kitchen in Wasilla, Alaska.

“As a force in readiness, the relevancy of the National Guard increases through the flexibility of these Airmen,” said Air Force Master Sgt. Franz Deters, the senior noncommissioned officer in charge of the volunteer effort.

The kitchen relies on donations from the Food Bank and other foundations to prepare quality meals for local Mat-Su residents in need. The organization employs only one professional chef, Air Force veteran Mike Gordon, and the rest of the staff is completely made up of unpaid volunteers. The kitchen is next door to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, whose kitchen committee heads up the operation.

“When the guard started volunteering here, we were very short staffed,” said Duane Hanson, one of the kitchen’s dedicated civilian volunteers. “Their work here has kept us on track in our efforts to help as many people as we can.”

The airmen work twice a week for three hours each day, preparing about 600 meals per month.



We get to help Alaskan citizens, filling in at a time when there are fewer available volunteers, all while getting training that allows us to gain additional experience in our jobs that we do for the guard.”

Air Force Master Sgt. Franz Deters, Alaska Air National Guard

The airmen are certified in food handling, with years of experience cooking in the Air Guard. They have been assisting the kitchen in food preparation, which consists of peeling, cutting, dicing and cooking various food items, before being put into sealed packages.

“I take pride in the fact that I work with a team that never says ‘It’s not my job,'” Deters said. “I work with men and women who will volunteer to go where they can have the biggest impact.”

According to Deters, this unique volunteer opportunity to serve the local community also helps his team meet mission essential training requirements for their work in service career fields for military service.

“We get to help Alaskan citizens, filling in at a time when there are fewer available volunteers, all while getting training that allows us to gain additional experience in our jobs that we do for the guard,” Deters said. “It’s really a win-win.”

Good Shepherd Pastor Rick Cavens, retired Alaska National Guard chaplain, oversees the kitchen staff. The kitchen provides meals to My House Homeless Teens Resource Center, Knik House and Family Promise. Recently, the kitchen started a meal program for Mat-Su School District families, with the intention of providing a food portion big enough to feed an entire family.

“I have two extended families, my church and my military family,” Cavens said. “The National Guard has offered a tremendous helping hand during this difficult time of uncertainty. We’re very thankful for their hard work and dedication to helping the local community.”

(Army Sgt.

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Medical Team: Trump Could Return to White House as Early as Monday | National News

President Donald Trump’s medical team on Sunday gave a positive outlook on his health following his coronavirus diagnosis, saying he could be released from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to return to the White House as early as Monday.

The doctors described two incidents of drops in Trump’s oxygen saturation – the latest on Saturday morning, which prompted the doctors to put the president on dexamethasone, a widely available steroid that has been shown to reduce death in severe COVID-19 cases. Trump’s physician, Dr. Sean Conley, did not know if Trump was given supplemental oxygen at that time, and he did not say how low the president’s oxygen levels dropped.

The doctor disclosed that Trump was put on supplemental oxygen on Friday following a high fever and his first drop in oxygen levels, despite Trump being “fairly adamant” that he did not need it, according to the doctors. He remained on oxygen for about an hour, Conley said.

Conley did not say if the president’s CT scans or X-rays have shown any damage to his lungs.

“There’s some expected findings, but nothing of any major clinical concern,” he said.

When asked why he didn’t reveal that Trump was previously on supplemental oxygen during a press conference on Saturday, Conely said: “I was trying to reflect the upbeat attitude that the team, the president, over his course of illness has had. I didn’t want to give any information that might steer the course of illness in another direction, and in doing so, came off that we were trying to hide something, which wasn’t necessarily true.”

Conely also tried to explain the differing statements between him and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, who reportedly told pool reporters on Saturday that the president’s condition had been “very concerning.”

“The chief and I work side by side, and I think his statement was misconstrued,” Conely said, adding that Friday’s episode was “limited.”

The president also completed his second dose of remdesivir Saturday evening. His doctors plan to continue him on a five-day course on the drug.

“Today he feels well. He’s been up and around. Our plan for today is to have him to eat and drink, be up out of bed as much as possible, to be mobile,” Dr. Brian Garibaldi said. “And if he continues to look and feel as well as he does today, our hope is that we can plan for a discharge as early as tomorrow to the White House where he can continue his treatment course.”

Trump was transported to the medical center early Friday evening.

The president is expected to receive a national security briefing later Sunday from national security adviser Robert O’Brien, Gen. Mark Milley and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

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Inuvo’s IntentKey Uncovers Changing Home Renovation Audience Behaviors in Midst of COVID-19 for National Home Improvement Retailer Client

LITTLE ROCK, Ark., Sept. 28, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Inuvo, Inc. (NYSE American: INUV), a leading provider of marketing technology, powered by artificial intelligence (AI) that serves brands and agencies, today announces how the IntentKey artificial intelligence (AI) technology has built strong brand awareness with new audiences for a national home improvement retailer client by uncovering changing audience behaviors in the midst of COVID-19.

The pandemic has created a boom in home remodeling, as more time at home has changed the way people need their homes to function. Houzz reported a 58% increase in professional referrals for projects year-over-year. In a Porch.com survey, more than 75% of consumers said they plan to take on a new project within the next 12 months. CNBC coverage also boasts record high equity is giving homeowners the financial flexibility and confidence to reinvest in their homes as real estate prices increase amid record low interest rates.

IntentKey’s national home improvement retailer client was opening a new store in the Northeast and was looking for digital solutions to build brand awareness with both consumers and contractors, while also driving traffic to the new store.

The IntentKey AI technology was able to identify audience insights unavailable through conventional marketing technologies. The IntentKey easily identified the expected audience interests in home improvement concepts, such as renovation, bathroom remodeling, Pergo flooring, vanities, affordable tile, travertine, and the like. However, the IntentKey was also able to expose an unknown trend wherein audiences were demonstrating an interest in product within a 60, 90 and even 120-mile radius that were out of stock locally. This audience intent was manifested because the artificial intelligence technology behind the IntentKey was able to associate the general home renovation concepts with these unexpected concepts like “out of stock” and “low inventory levels,” which in turn suggested contractor and consumer were willing to inconvenience themselves in this COVID-19 environment so as to get their projects completed.

“This discovery contradicts the behaviors of the typical home renovation shopper / contractor who generally source supplies from local home improvement stores. COVID-19 has created an environment where people are working from home, vacations have been canceled, and normal activities outside home have diminished. Collectively, this has led to an increase in home renovation for functionality and enjoyment,” said Tristan Cameron, VP of Sales & Account Management. “The IntentKey AI identified this greater distance travel trend and used it to automatically increase the size of the audience receiving the marketing. This discovery highlights the adaptive power of the IntentKey’s real-time updates, which adjusts marketing audience size based on just-in-time insights.”

For this client, the IntentKey AI was able to define a strategy the home retailer could capitalize on wherein their traditional, more local audience targeting approach could be expanded to capture a greater footprint of in-market audiences willing to travel for items they had in stock.

About the IntentKeyTM
Inuvo®’s IntentKeyTM is a patented, machine-learning technology designed to mirror the manner in which the human brain instantly associates

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Summerville’s Katie’s Krops reflects on over a decade of national community garden work | News

SUMMERVILLE — Not many people can say they were internationally recognized for their service, created a program that spans across the United States or are a published author. 

Summerville native Katie Stagliano did all three by the time she was 21. 

“Age is just a number,” she said. “You will be amazed at what you can accomplish.” 



KatieKrops_3.jpg

Katie Stagliano (left) and her mother, Stacy, remove tree roots from a tiller they were using to break up soil in a garden bed on Wednesday Sept. 23, 2020, at Crossroads Community Church in Summerville. Gavin McIntyre/Staff




Stagliano is the founder of Katie’s Krops, a community garden organization with the goal of combating hunger through donating produce. She is also the organizer of Katie’s Krops Garden-To-Table Dinners, a program in which Stagliano and other volunteers serve fresh meals to local residents.

The organization started in 2008 with a garden in Stagliano’s backyard. It has since grown to more than 100 community gardens across the U.S. and over 38,000 pounds of donated produce. Its flagship garden is in Summerville at Crossroads Community Church. 

The group also reached a milestone in September through serving more than 10,000 meals since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Nobody is making any money off of what we are doing,” said Ryan Herrmann, Katie’s Krops head chef for the past three years. “I love it.” 



SC's oldest pharmacy speaks on witnessing second pandemic

Stagliano has been recognized by Disney Channel, has had documentaries created about her and wrote a children’s book about the beginnings of Katie’s Krops called “Katie’s Cabbage.”

Those closest to her say she is incredibly humble and doesn’t talk much about her accomplishments. 

Stagliano said she’s just still surprised that all of this started with a single cabbage seedling.  

Planting a seed

Thousands of residents have benefited from Katie Krop’s over the years. It all began when Stagliano was in the third grade at Pinewood Preparatory School.

She was asked to bring home and raise a cabbage seedling as part of the Bonnie Plants 3rd Grade Cabbage Program. She planted it, watered it and even put a cage around it with her grandfather to protect it from deers. 

As the cabbage grew, Stagliano eventually got the idea to donate it. It came from her father, John Stagliano, always telling her and her brother how blessed they were to have a meal every night.

Stagliano was advised to take the cabbage to a soup kitchen in North Charleston called Tri-County Family Ministries. It had grown so big she couldn’t pick up the cabbage herself.



KatieKrops_6.jpg

Peppers grow on Wednesday Sept. 23, 2020, in a community garden started by Katie Stagliano at Crossroads Community Church in Summerville. Gavin McIntyre/Staff




“It was about the size of my 4-year-old brother,” she said. 

The cabbage weighed in at 40 pounds at the soup kitchen. It would go on to feed 275 people, and Stagliano would go on to be inspired to expand her garden. 

Stacy Stagliano said her daughter was

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‘Full House’ cast sings about golden retrievers in music video for National Dog Week

Golden retrievers are amazing. Not only are they regularly one of the most popular dogs in America, they can give hugs, fetch Chick-fil-A and offer comfort to firefighters.

So it’s no surprise to us that the folks at “Full House” fully respect the lovable canines!

In honor of National Dog Week, “Full House” creator Jeff Franklin partnered with Petsmart Charities and the show’s stars to release the song “Gotta Love a Golden,” along with a sweet video designed to raise awareness about animal homelessness.

In the video, Franklin’s two goldens, Woody and Lola, are shown frolicking with their owner around the house and backyard. We also get to see cast members John Stamos, Bob Saget, Candace Cameron Bure, Jodie Sweetin, Andrea Barber and Dave Coulier crooning along (or playing bongos, in Stamos’ case) to the bouncy song, written by Franklin himself. (Franklin is the main singer but the full performance credit goes to the Full Dog-House.)

At the end of the video, Franklin sits with one pooch and gives a shoutout to all the dogs who don’t have loving homes, urging folks to donate at PetSmartCharities.org. You can buy the song at that link, and all proceeds will go to the charity.

The
The

Longtime “Full House” fans know that golden retrievers were critical cast members on both the original series and the “Fuller House” reboot, which ended after five seasons in June.

“As the proud owner of two awesome golden retrievers, I know firsthand how important the consistent comfort and unconditional love that a pet can provide,” Franklin said in a statement. “My lifelong love affair with Goldens inspired me to make them the official Tanner family pets. Comet on ‘Full House’ and Cosmo on ‘Fuller House’ brought their warmth and humor to the set every day and found a home in the hearts of all those that watched.”

Woody and Lola, Jeff Franklin's dogs, are in the spotlight! (Jeff Franklin / YouTube)
Woody and Lola, Jeff Franklin’s dogs, are in the spotlight! (Jeff Franklin / YouTube)

And, he added, “Creating forever homes for our pets continues to be one of my life missions, making this partnership with Petsmart Charities a passion project for me.”

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National Lobster Day: Red Lobster, OAK Long Bar + Kitchen offering deals to celebrate the holiday

In case you didn’t get a chance to get your fill on delicious lobster rolls this summer, National Lobster Day can curb those cravings.

The Lobster industry and this unique holiday has been put in the spotlight recently when Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell asked that the Senate “proceed the consideration” in regards to National Lobster Day. Many voiced was not the priority considering the county is in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Food and Wine reported.

It led to discussions on President Donald Trump’s support for Maine’s lobster and fishing industries. But it also highlighted the impacts from the president’s ongoing trade war with China and the weakened markets due to the pandemic, the outlet reported.

But if you’re just looking for a tasty dinner, many restaurants are looking to attract customers on Friday with special deals.

See below for deals you can get on Friday, Sept. 25 for National Lobster Day in Massachusetts.

OAK Long Bar + Kitchen in Boston is offering customers 15% off its signature LobsterRoll all day Friday.

Red Lobster is offering customers 15% off the Lobster Lover’s Dream, which includes “a succulent roasted rock lobster tail, butter-poached Maine lobster tail and lobster-and-shrimp linguini Alfredo.” The deal isn’t just for Friday, it’s been available all week.

And if you want to stay at home and eat, The Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative (MLMC) has highlighted a number of places that ship lobster nationwide.

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🦞 news you can use: Friday is 𝙉𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣𝙖𝙡 𝙇𝙤𝙗𝙨𝙩𝙚𝙧 𝘿𝙖𝙮! To celebrate, we will offer 15% off our signature Lobster Roll! All...

Posted by OAK Long Bar + Kitchen on Monday, September 21, 2020

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Gender pay gap within the White House worse than the national average: report

The gender pay gap within the White House is reportedly worse than the national average, according to an analysis by nonprofit news organization The 19th.



a group of people walking in front of Bellamy Mansion: Gender pay gap within the White House worse than the national average: report


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Gender pay gap within the White House worse than the national average: report

Analysis by the website found salaries in President Trump’s White House had a $33,300 difference between the median salary for male staffers and the median salary for female staffers.

This year, male staffers earned a median salary of around $106,000, and female staffers’ median was about $72,700.

The statistics indicate women working for the administration make around 69 cents on the male dollar, which is less than the national gender pay gap of 82 cents on the dollar.

Still, both the national numbers and the White House numbers reflect the “raw” gender pay gap, which does not account for experience, education, title or other factors that play into one’s financial earnings.

“To avoid addressing structural and institutional gender discrimination in terms of pay equity, the go-to is to talk about position and title when, in fact, that’s not what’s driving pay inequity,” said C. Nicole Mason, the president and CEO of the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

Mason says that the gender pay gap is being determined by “decisions that are being made from the top down about the valuing of women’s work and how much they should be paid.”

The 19th reported Women in the Obama administration were paid roughly between 84 and 89 cents for every dollar earned by male staffers.

Conservative think tank American Enterprise Institute (AEI) reported salaries differed somewhat greatly between the Trump administration and Obama’s. The Obama administration paid women 89 cents on the dollar in 2016, compared to 63 cents on the dollar during Trump’s first year in office.

“There is no absence of qualified women,” Mason said. She added that during Obama’s terms in office the administration made a more concerted effort to place women in senior leadership positions.

In 2016, more women than men earned $100,000 in the White House under Obama.

Video: Minneapolis City Council’s ‘hypocrisy’ amid crime uptick ‘astounding,’ GOP congressional candidate says (FOX News)

Minneapolis City Council’s ‘hypocrisy’ amid crime uptick ‘astounding,’ GOP congressional candidate says

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