FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Stoneman Douglas student activist David Hogg's response to a vulgar, sexually violent threat on Twitter from a St. Louis broadcaster? Indifference. "It doesn't really matter what people say," Hogg said in a brief telephone interview Tuesday.
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NASA successfully carried out a second flight on Mars on Thursday of its mini helicopter Ingenuity, a 52-second sortie that saw it climb to a height of 16 feet (five meters).
"So far, the engineering telemetry we have received and analyzed tell us that the flight met expectations," said Bob Balaram, Ingenuity's chief engineer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in southern California.
"We have two flights of Mars under our belts, which means that there is still a lot to learn during this month of Ingenuity," Balaram said in a statement.
The US space agency conducted the first flight of the four pound (1.8 kilogram) rotorcraft on Monday, the first powered flight ever on another planet.
That time Ingenuity rose to a height of 10 feet and then touched down after 39.1 seconds.
For the second flight, which lasted 51.9 seconds, Ingenuity climbed to 16 feet, hovered briefly, tilted and then accelerated sideways for seven feet.
"The helicopter came to a stop, hovered in place, and made turns to point its camera in different directions," said Havard Grip, Ingenuity's chief pilot. "Then it headed back to the center of the airfield to land.
"It sounds simple, but there are many unknowns regarding how to fly a helicopter on Mars."
Data and images from the flights are transmitted 173 million miles (278 million kilometers) back to Earth where they are received by NASA's array of ground antennas and processed.
Ingenuity traveled to Mars tucked under the belly of the Perseverance rover, which landed on the Red Planet on February 18 on a mission to search for signs of past microbial life.
Ingenuity's goal, by contrast, is to prove its technology works.
Ingenuity's flights are challenging because of conditions vastly different from Earth's -- foremost among them a rarefied atmosphere that has less than one percent the density of our own.
This means that Ingenuity's rotors, which span four feet, have to spin at 2,400 revolutions per minute to achieve lift -- about five times more than a helicopter on Earth.
Because of the distance from Earth, it can't be piloted by a human. While its main maneuvers are pre-programmed, Ingenuity needs to make some real time decisions using data from its sensors and camera.
It also needs to run a heater to survive nighttime temperatures that plunge to minus 130 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 90 degrees Celsius).
NASA is already preparing to send Dragonfly, a much larger rotorcraft-lander, to Saturn's icy moon Titan where it will fly multiple sorties in search of extraterrestrial life when it reaches there in 2034.
New arrest shows Proud Boys engaged in 'conspiracy involving terrorism' during Jan. 6 riot: Legal expert
A Syracuse-based Proud Boy was indicted on seven counts related to his role in planning the Jan. 6 insurrection.
Matthew Greene was named in a superseding indictment with two other members of the right-wing group who remain jailed on conspiracy and other charges, reported CNY Central.
"According to the indictment, Mr. Greene and his co-conspirators intended to stop, delay, or hinder Congress's certification of the Electoral College vote, 'by force if necessary,'" said Special Agent in Charge Thomas Relford, from the FBI's Albany office. "His actions were deliberate, dangerous and illegal. Now he must face the consequences."
The 33-year-old Greene was charged along with fellow Proud Boys members Dominic Pezzola, 43, of Rochester, and William Pepe, 31, of Dutchess County.
The indictment alleges Greene and the other Proud Boys were among the first Donald Trump supporters to gain entry to the Capitol, and video and photo evidence show he held a police shield stolen from an officer by Pezzola.
Prosecutors also say Greene sent an encrypted message to an associate asking about his well-being, saying, "I'm good, we took the capital."
Greene appeared in court Tuesday on charges of obstruction of an official proceeding and aiding abetting, obstruction of law enforcement during civil disorder and aiding and abetting, destruction of government property and aiding and abetting, entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a restricted building or grounds, and disorderly conduct in a restricted building or grounds and aiding and abetting.
Legal expert Marcy Wheeler argued that the Greene indictment was significant because the allegations were more serious than the original charges against Pepe, because prosecutors said those two Proud Boys aided and abetted Pezzola with breaking a window in the initial breaching of the Capitol.
"It wasn't until this supserseding indictment that the government formally aligned Pezzola's actions — including spectacularly breaking that first window with a riot shield — with the rest of the Proud Boy indictments, in fact making them (as the government has already argued) the same conspiracy, a conspiracy involving terrorism," she argued.
PA GOP lawmaker goes off the rails and demands to know if state's health department is murdering old people
Republican Pennsylvania State Sen. Cris Dush went off the rails during a hearing on Thursday where he demanded to know if his state's health department was deliberately killing elderly people.
During a Senate appropriations hearing for the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Dush asked a representative from the department if it had plotted to deliberately send people infected with the novel coronavirus into nursing homes as a way to kill them off so that they would no longer be a financial burden.
"Were there discussions within the department about how much money could be saved by putting people in those congregate settings and decimating the population?" he asked. "In socialist governments, that could be seen as an effective tool to reducing those costs to the state."
The representative from the Department of Health seemed completely taken aback by Dush's question.
"That would be completely inconsistent with the integrity and the character of the Department of Health that I know," she shot back.
Dush said he felt the need to ask the health department about this because his constituents had claimed that nursing homes in the state had been turned into "death camps."
As reported by the Associated Press earlier this year, Pennsylvania nursing home trade associations have said that they were not forced to accept any COVID-19-infected patients against their wishes.
Watch the video below.
Here's the video... Insane COVID conspiracy theory + offensive Nazi analogies = another day in PA's GOP legislatur… https://t.co/VQXK0EKl2y— J.J. Abbott 📮vote.pa/mail (@J.J. Abbott 📮vote.pa/mail)1619109606.0
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