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Religious leaders in CNY urge using less fossil fuels to combat climate change

Religious leaders across central New York have a message on this Earth Day; everyone needs to cut back on fossil fuels to stop runaway climate change. A statement signed by leaders of a broad spectrum of faiths, from Tibetan Buddhists to Muslims to Christians, urges central New York to start planning a transition away from fossil fuels, now. "Given the dangers represented by the continued burning of fossil fuels to the planet we depend upon for life and the importance of the next ten years in...

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From his Black Baptist roots to his braggadocious banter, Cassius Clay joined the Nation of Islam and became Muhammad Ali. He was more than a  silver-tongued boxer; he was a champion for Black empowerment, and when he resisted the Vietnam draft -- an historic defender of religious freedom. Until the end of his life, Ali fought his own sacred struggle as he negotiated the release of hostages, journeyed with Parkinson’s disease, and worked across religious traditions to advance the dignity of all humanity. Ali shook up the world. And this means as much for us today as it did in the past. 

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YONKERS, N.Y. (AP) — Walk-in COVID-19 shots will be available to anyone over 60 at mass vaccination sites run by New York state starting Friday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday.

“You can just walk in to any of the mass vaccinations sites across the state, and walk in, and they will give you the vaccine,” Cuomo said during a virtual briefing in Yonkers. “You don’t have to go onto the internet. You don’t have to make a phone call. You don’t have to do anything. Just show up at the vaccination site if you’re 60-plus and they will give you vaccine.”

Liz Tallent was by her computer, ready. She's the marketing and special events director at The Orange Peel in Asheville, N.C., a 1,050-cap venue that has hosted everyone from songwriter Nick Lowe, to Sublime cover band Badfish, to rapper Danny Brown. Like every other music venue, The Orange Peel was hit hard by the pandemic shut downs. Distanced indoor events would barely break even, and because of how the space is set up, there hasn't been a real way to do outdoor events, either.

Manhattan's district attorney announced Wednesday that his office will no longer prosecute prostitution and unlicensed massage under a new policy that's believed to be the first of its kind in New York.

Peeling paint. Cracked buckets. Employees dragging unsealed bags of medical waste. Procedures ignored. Inadequately trained staff.

President Biden announced Wednesday that Americans have received 200 million COVID-19 vaccinations since he took office, double his initial goal of 100 million vaccinations in his first 100 days, and what he called "an incredible achievement for the nation."

Biden, who will officially cross the 100-day mark next week, also announced the availability of tax credits to employers who give their workers paid leave to get a shot.

"No working American should lose a single dollar from their paycheck because they are doing their patriotic duty to get vaccinated," Biden said.

Scientists and public health experts agree that masks are effective at lowering the spread of the coronavirus indoors, where the vast majority of transmission is likely to occur.

But what about outside?

About two dozen states have statewide mask mandates that generally require people to wear masks outside when they're not able to stay at least 6 feet apart. Many cities have their own rules.

The murder conviction of Derek Chauvin could represent "a huge paradigm shift," if three other Minneapolis officers charged in George Floyd's death are also convicted, says Nekima Levy Armstrong, a civil rights attorney and activist in Minneapolis.

President Biden's climate envoy, John Kerry, and his Chinese counterpart, Xie Zhenhua, agreed last week that China and the United States, the world's two biggest emitters of greenhouse gases, should cooperate on tackling the climate crisis.

But with bilateral ties at their worst in decades, and few details emerging from their meeting in Shanghai, observers have been left to guess what that cooperation might look like.

BERLIN — Tareq Alaows was hoping to become the first Syrian refugee to win a seat in Germany's parliament when the country goes to the polls in September.

Speaking to NPR in February after announcing his candidacy with the Green Party, the 31-year-old lawyer and human rights activist from Damascus was full of ambition to help make Germany a better place.

"From my own experience as an asylum-seeker, I know that Germany needs to improve its integration policies, because they impact everyone, not just refugees," he said. "I want to effect change for everyone in Germany."

It was 4 o'clock in the morning, well before sunrise, and cold. A light wintry mix of rain and snow was falling. The lousy weather was a relief, as it meant even less of a chance that someone might randomly pass by. The small group of scientists didn't want anyone to see what they were about to do.

They'd brought flashlights, a shovel, a trowel, a tape measure and an old map. The map looked more like a blueprint than a pirate's guide to buried treasure. Still, it did show the secret location of something precious stashed away underground.

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