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Anti-vaxx Kentucky teen who sued over unvaccinated chickenpox ban now has chickenpox

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A Kentucky teen who sued the Northern Kentucky health department for religious discrimination for banning him from his private Catholic high school amid an outbreak of chickenpox has just contracted chickenpox.

Jerome Kunkel, 18, a student at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Assumption Academy, said he has deeply-held beliefs against being inoculated with the chickenpox vaccine, NBC News reports. He sued the health department in March, and lost.

“The fact that I can’t finish my senior year in basketball, like, our last couple of games, it’s pretty devastating,” Kunkel said at the time.

“I don’t believe in that vaccine at all and they are trying to push it on us,” Kunkel’s father, Bill Kunkel said. He noted the vaccine was created from the tissue of two aborted fetuses.

“As Christians we’re against abortion,” he added.

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He also bragged that as children, “we used to go to chickenpox parties.”

Chickenpox parties have been called dangerous by experts.

In mid-March Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Assumption Academy had 32 documented cases of chickenpox, a highly-contagious disease which can cause brain swelling and even death.

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“These are deeply held religious beliefs, they’re sincerely held beliefs,” Kunkel’s family attorney Christopher Wiest said. “From their perspective, they always recognized they were running the risk of getting it, and they were OK with it.”

Wiest did not mention that by getting chickenpox Kunkel could then spread it. He did, however, call the health dept.’s ban “stupid.”

 

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South Korean fighter jets fire 400 warning shots at Russian military plane

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South Korean fighter jets fired nearly 400 warning shots at a Russian military aircraft on Tuesday after it violated the country's airspace, with Seoul warning of a far stronger reaction if a breach reoccurs.

The Russian A-50 early warning and control aircraft breached South Korean airspace twice off its east coast, the defence ministry official said, forcing the air force to scramble fighters.

Moscow denied any of its military aircraft had violated South Korean airspace, saying its planes had carried out planned drills over international waters.

But Seoul said a warplane entered South Korean airspace near the disputed Dokdo islets -- which are also claimed by Japan -- the first such violation since Korean War hostilities ended in 1953.

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2020 Election

Democrats are on the verge of setting a ‘time bomb’ for any candidate who can defeat Trump

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If a new president takes over the White House in January 2021, he or she may quickly find that the Democratic Party that just won control of the executive branch left a loaded gun in the hands of the Republicans, who are all too eager to use it.

That should be the takeaway from reports about the budget negotiations between the House Democrats and the Trump administration. According to Bloomberg reporter Sahil Kapur, the parties are coalescing around an agreement to raise spending by $350 billion, offset that increase somewhat with about $75 billion, and extend the debt ceiling — now set to expire in the fall — to July 31, 2021.

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2020 Election

State Sen. Royce West enters Democratic primary to challenge John Cornyn

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State Sen. Royce West made it official Monday: He’s running for U.S. Senate, joining a crowded and unsettled Democratic primary in the race to unseat Republican John Cornyn.

“I’m battle tested,” West told supporters at a campaign launch event. “You’ve seen me in battle, and I’m ready today to announce my candidacy for the United States Senate.”

The Dallas attorney has been viewed as a potential primary contender for some time now, but he remained mum publicly on his plans. In June, West met with U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., where he reportedly had a “positive meeting” and signaled that he was likely to throw his hat in the ring. He filed the Federal Election Commission paperwork to formally launch his bid Friday.

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