News Wrap

Local News: New Art Installation Honors Armed Services

The ‘Faces of Courage’ is a new art installation of large black and white photographs honoring military service members and their families. The art collection, a creation by the French artist, JR, was installed on 5300 Virginia Beach Boulevard on Veteran’s Day to recognize all these men and women who have sacrificed for our nation’s freedom and honor all the people who have served. Hampton Roads was selected as the home for this meaningful creation due to the nearby large naval base. The art piece is impossible to miss and massive in size; it’s almost the size of a football field and twenty-two feet tall. Virginia representatives and the Virginia Beach Mayor publicly celebrated the display for Veteran’s Day, and the art piece will be showcased for several months

State News: Youngkin’s Transition Steering Committee Announced

Governor-elect Glen Youngkin has picked four retired governors to serve on his Transition Steering Committee as he begins taking over as governor of Virginia. Youngkin made a statement this past Tuesday regarding the diverse group, including a former Democratic governor. He said that in order to enact lasting change in Virginia there must be more people represented in the government. Former Democratic Governor Douglas Wilder, who is a member of the committee, spoke openly about his criticisms towards former Governor Terry McAuliffe’s decision to run for re-election and did not support him during the race. The other three governors are former Republican Governors Robert F. McDonnell, James S. Gilmore III, and George F. Allen. Other notable members of the Transition Steering Committee include Jeff Goettman, the chief operating officer for Youngkin’s campaign, Kay Coles James, previous president of a conservative think tank, and state Senator Steve Newman. 

National News: Colorado Police Officer Cleared of Charges for Fatally Shooting Good Samaritan 

After a lengthy investigation, the First Judicial District Critical Incident Response Team has concluded that the actions of Arvada Police Officer Kraig Brownlow were justified, and he will not face charges for the death of John Hurley. In June, Arvada Police responded to calls of an active shooter named Ronald Troyke. After Troyke shot police officer Gordon Beasley, citizen John Hurley confronted him and shot and killed him with his own personal handgun to prevent him from shooting anyone else. Officer Brownlow saw Hurley standing over the body of Troyke holding the rifle and handgun and fatally shot him. 

Despite Hurley’s heroic actions, Officer Brownlow will not be charged because the information he had at the time of contact justified his use of deadly force. Hurley’s mother made a statement to the public following his death. She said, “I imagine a lot of people are angry, and that’s understandable. I would ask you instead of acting on your anger, use that energy to be the change you want to see in the world.”

International News: U.N. Chief Gives Statement on Global Warming

Antonio Guterres, U.N. Chief, voiced his opinions about global warming during the COP26 conference in Glasgow, Scotland, which concluded on Friday. This conference is annually held to evaluate what future steps need to be taken regarding climate change. Going into the conference, Guterres sought to encourage leaders to limit global warming to 1.5 Celsius degrees, which he admits will likely not be approved this year. The U.N. had three main priorities for this year’s conference, none of which have been resolved. The first goal was cutting in half the carbon emissions by 2030, which would help create the 1.5 Celsius threshold that Guterres is pushing. The second goal involves convincing rich countries to agree to sign a twelve-year plan to provide $100 billion a year to poor countries for financial climate aid. The third goal recommends that half the money of the twelve-year plan goes to helping lower-income countries survive the harsher side-effects of climate change. Many countries had different ideas regarding the conference and disagreed on how to proceed. Bolivia’s main negotiator, Diego Pacheco Balanz, expressed his thoughts following the conference. He said he felt that there are two possible conclusions as talks for climate change continue. He describes one outcome as being good for the people and the climate; however, the other would lead to “carbon colonialism,” which he says must be fought against. While this year’s conference did not achieve all that officials were hoping for, they view this year as the foundation of future conversations on climate change.