- Coco Loko is a new cacao-snorting craze.
Snorting cacao powder is now a thing. It's called Coco Loko. (You can buy your 1.25-ounce can for $24.99.) An Orlando-based company called Legal Lean came up with the idea two years ago—to snort the same chemicals that exist in energy drinks for a high that lasts up to an hour. Founder Nick Anderson was inspired by the "chocolate-snorting trend" he'd heard about in Europe. He stated the effects were "almost like an energy-drink feeling, like you're euphoric but also motivated to get things done." The idea behind the powder was to create the drug-free version of "lean"—a cough-syrup cocktail made with promethazine or codeine, also known as "purple drank." Anderson stated he uses Coco Loko for music festivals, long car rides, and "those types of social situations when you feel anxious."
Source: Washington Post
The Environmental Defense Fund has gathered and analyzed data from the FDA ranging from 2003 to 2013, focusing on the presence of lead in baby food. The amount of lead in baby food significantly exceeds the amount of lead found in other types of food. Of the 2,164 types of baby food that were tested, 20 percent of them contained detectable levels of lead. The most common places where lead was found included fruit juices, root vegetables, and cookies. The EDF also found that more than one million children consume a level of lead that exceeds the FDA's limit.
Source: Environmental Defense Fund
Sexual assault is one of the most commonly reported crimes at sea. According to US government data, sexual assaults on cruise ships exceed the number of any other major offense on board. Of the 92 alleged crime incidents reported on cruise ships in 2016, 62 were related to sexual assault: 70 percent of all criminal incidents were attributed to unwanted sexual contact. This is not a new problem for cruise lines: In 1999, Carnival Cruise Lines stated there had been 108 accusations of sexual assault and sexual misconduct aboard its ships within a five-year period. In October 2015, a 15-year-old girl attended an alcohol-free teen club on board a Carnival cruise ship. She left the club to get ice cream and was attacked and raped by a group of drunk men. Florida-based Attorney Michael Winkelman stated that if the cruise lines "were truly honest and transparent to the general public about the risk of rape and sexual assault at sea, their business would likely go down." Source: New York Times, Quartz, Miami New Times
Politicians introduced a bill into the Senate calling for the cessation of tax-payer-funded stadiums. Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey and Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma both supported the proposal of the bill that would prohibit the use of municipal bonds to fund sports stadiums. "Professional sports teams generate billions of dollars in revenue. There's no reason why we should give these multimillion dollar businesses a federal tax break to build new stadiums," stated Booker. In September 2016, the Brookings Institution reported that $3.2 billion in federal taxpayer money has been used to fund the construction or renovation of 36 sports stadium since 2010. According to the report, the New York Yankees had received $431 million in federal money, while the Chicago Bears received $205 million, and the New York Mets received $185 million.
Starting in 2019, Volvo will make all of their cars electric. The car company, owned by the Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, will be getting rid of all combustion engines and focusing solely on electric motors. The company plans to release five new models between 2019 and 2021—three will be Volvos and two would be branded as Polestar. BMW also has plans to release an electric version of its 3 series in September.
In June, 101-year-old Julia Hawkins became the champion in the 100-yard dash in her age group (women 100 and older). Known as "Hurricane Hawkins," her record for the dash—39.62 seconds—was set at the National Senior Games in Birmingham, Alabama. She also competed in the 50-yard dash, where she out-ran competitors at least 10 years younger than she is, clocking in at 18.31 seconds. Hawkins just recently picked up running as a hobby, when she turned 100.
Source: AP News
In early June, the US Supreme Court removed a North Carolina law that banned sex offenders from social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. The law, implemented in 2008, made it a felony for sex offenders to use online social media services that could lead to communication with minors. "To foreclose access to social media altogether is to prevent the user from engaging in the legitimate exercise of First Amendment rights," Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote. "Even convicted criminals—and in some instances, especially convicted criminals—might receive legitimate benefits from these means for access to the world of ideas, in particular if they seek to reform and to pursue lawful and rewarding lives."
Source: Reuters, Washington Post
The most expensive House race in history occurred in June with candidates and outside groups spending about $55 million. Republican Karen Handel, the winner, and Democrat Jon Ossoff ran in a special election for a Georgia House seat. The seat was formerly held by Tom Price, who left to take on a new role as the health and human services secretary in Trump's administration. Ossoff raised $23.6 million from his campaign, while Handel raised $4.5 million. Fifty-six percent of Handel's donations came from Georgia. California and New York funded the majority of contributions for Ossoff. Handel also received $25 million support from party committees and "super PACs" mostly in advertising against the Democrat side. The cost of the 2017 race was nearly double the amount of the last House race, which was in Florida in 2012.
Source: CNN, BBC, New York Times
Compiled by Diana Waldron