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Prosecutors decided to revisit Assange as part of Trump’s war on the media: report

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On Thursday, The Daily Beast reported that the decision for Justice Department prosecutors to go after WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, whose case had lain dormant since the early years of President Barack Obama’s administration, was made around the time President Donald Trump pushed to purge “leakers” from the White House.

According to one former national security official, while the current Assange charges are carefully crafted in response to First Amendment concerns — focusing on conspiracy to commit computer hacking as opposed to espionage, for example — they arose shortly after the administration decided to reexamine “what qualifies as media.”

The Obama administration had been interested in pursuing the case, stemming from a 2010 release of classified documents supplied by private Chelsea Manning, but as a result of the tangled policy issues at play, decided not to pursue it.

More recently, Assange has been accused of working with Russia to disrupt the 2016 presidential election by publishing documents stolen from Democratic Party officials by Russian military operatives. Assange has denied that his source for these hacked files is Russia, and these allegations are not part of the charges for which the United States is seeking extradition.

Opinions vary on whether Assange is a journalist exposing information in the public interest, or a de-facto vigilante intelligence service operator engaged in criminal conduct. Complicating the matter is that even if he is the latter, the precedent prosecutors may set by targeting him could have consequences for the former.

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Trump’s horsewhip-carrying chief of protocol will resign after intimidating State Department staff: report

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President Donald Trump's chief of protocol plans to step down just ahead of the G-20 summit in Japan, according to Bloomberg News.

Sean Lawler, whose job includes assisting the president in diplomatic talks overseas and with foreign leaders in the White House, faces an investigation from the State Department's inspector general for intimidating subordinates, including carrying a horsewhip around the office.

The president reportedly did not care for Lawler, at one point asking officials why he still works at the White House.

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Jerry Falwell, Jr blasted as ‘un-Christian prat’ after trying to defend Donald Trump in battle with Southern Baptist ethics chief

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Liberty University President Jerry Falwell, Jr. was ripped online for attempting to rationalize President Donald Trump's detention camps for children.

Dr. Russell Moore, the president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, posted on Twitter an Associated Press story on the "perilous conditions" at a Texas Border Patrol station holding 300 children.

"The reports of the conditions for migrant children at the border should shock all of our consciences. Those created in the image of God should be treated with dignity and compassion, especially those seeking refuge from violence back home. We can do better than this," Moore wrote.

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How one woman taunting a homeless McDonald’s employee turned his life around

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A woman in Fayette County, Georgia recently took to Facebook to disparage a McDonald's worker who was sleeping in the restaurant. "I go and tell an employee there is someone is asleep in their booth and her response was 'oh yeah, we know hee hee, it's ok' and I said 'not really but whatever,'" she wrote.

It turned out the sleeping employee, Simon Childs, is a 21-year-old homeless father who had recently lost his mother and was trying to catch some rest between multiple shifts at the restaurant.

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 ENOUGH IS ENOUGH 

Trump endorses killing journalists, like Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Online ad networks are now targeting sites that cover acts of violence against dissidents, LGBTQ people and people of color.

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