March 21, 2019: What to Know 

  • Bingo Barnes
  • Less than a week after a gunman killed 50 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said this morning that her nation would ban military-style guns and equipment. The BBC reports that about 250,000 people in the country own an estimated 1.2 million firearms. It's unclear how many of them will be affected by the ban.

  • click to enlarge HARRISON BERRY
    • Harrison Berry
    After listening to hours of testimony, the Idaho House Health and Welfare Committee voted 10-3 Wednesday to support a measure that would attach work requirements to any Medicaid expansion. HB277 would require new Medicaid recipients to work at least 20 hours per week, with a few exemptions such as students, seniors and caretakers. Only one member of the public testified in favor of the bill, while dozens of others urged lawmakers to reject the measure. The bill now heads to the full House for its consideration. Last November, Idaho voters overwhelmingly approved an initiative to expand Medicaid with no preemptions.
  • A disturbing new study says drinking very hot tea nearly doubles the risk of cancer. CNN says researchers concluded that drinkers who like their beverages warmer than 140 degrees and consume at least two large cups per day have a higher risk of esophageal cancer.
  • The Poughkeepsie (NY) Journal has a rather odd story about a New York man accused of keeping live sharks in his pool. The Journal says the New York Attorney General has charged the man with illegally possessing seven sandbar sharks—a protected species—with the intent to sell them.
  • Today is expected to be one of the least productive days in the American workplace as millions of sports fans sneak a peak or two (or three) at the March Madness NCAA men's basketball tournament, which tips off this morning and continues for the next three weeks.

  • The nominees for the 46th-annual Daytime Emmy Awards have been revealed. Variety reports that the nominees for Best Soap Opera are The Bold and the Beautiful, Days of Our Lives, General Hospital and The Young and the Restless. That's not such a big deal, considering that those four are the only soap operas currently on network television.
  • Food & Wine magazine says McDonald's has partnered with La-Z-Boy to create a new line of McDonald's-themed furniture. For example, an oversized sofa with four recliners and draped with McDonald's blankets and pillows also features two built-in McFlurry refrigerators.
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