December 20, 2018: What to Know 

  • Bingo Barnes
  • The Associated Press named the Valentine's Day mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, the top news story of 2018. The annual poll of U.S. editors and news directors decided that the shooting and its aftermath, which saw thousands of student demonstrations across the U.S., including a large demonstration in Boise, was the No. 1 story of the year. The rest of the AP Top Ten stories were the Trump/Russia probe, the #MeToo movement, mass shootings across the U.S., the midterm elections, U.S. immigration issues, the Kavanaugh hearings, climate change and the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
  • A number of key American allies expressed dismay when Russian President Vladimir Putin said, "Donald's right," this morning, giving his approval to President Trump's plan to withdraw American troops from Syria. The New York Times reports that Trump's decision to withdraw from Syria came in spite of objections from his top military advisers.

  • The Idaho Suicide Prevention Hotline says phone calls to the crisis call center in 2018 have already surpassed 2017 by more than 3,000 calls. Officials at ISPH say they are once again in need of volunteers to answer phones. The next round of training classes is set to begin on Thursday, Jan. 17.

  • click to enlarge Rev. W. Thomas Faucher will be sentenced today. - ACSO
    • ACSO
    • Rev. W. Thomas Faucher will be sentenced today.
    Retired Boise priest Rev. W. Thomas Faucher, 73,  is scheduled to be sentenced today in an Ada County courtroom after being accused of having thousands of images of child pornography on his home computer. In September, Faucher pleaded guilty to sharing a number of those images online. Prosecutors have indicated that they will ask for a 30-year prison sentence. The Diocese of Boise is also expected to begin the process of having Faucher defrocked.
  • Meanwhile, Pope Francis on Wednesday accepted the resignation of an auxiliary bishop in Los Angeles, accused of sexual misconduct with a minor. NBC News reports that the archbishop of the Los Angeles Diocese has acknowledged that the archdiocese has known about the accusations against Bishop Alexander Salazar since 2005.

  • On one of the busiest travel days of the year, Britain's Gatwick Airport was shut down early today after a drone was seen flying illegally nearby. The BBC reports that authorities said the drone activity was a "deliberate act" to disrupt flights.

  • On a much lighter note, the BBC reports today that a new survey chose the very America-centric It's a Wonderful Life as Britain's most popular Christmas movie. Other favorites in the top five were Elf, Love Actually, The Muppet Christmas Carol and Home Alone.

  • There are plenty of Top 10 movie lists floating around from the nation's film critics. Here at Boise Weekly, we're particularly tickled at our Movie Madness bracket, which is in this week's issue of BW. But USA Today has a list out this morning of the "5 Biggest Movie Bombs of 2018." They include Robin Hood, Solo: A Star Wars Story, The Happytime Murders, Gotti and London Fields. If you didn't see them, no worries—neither did too many others.

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