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InfoWars made up lies about Islamic community to help Alex Jones generate more traffic: former writer

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On Thursday, The New York Times reported that Josh Owens, a former staffer at the fringe conspiracy theory site InfoWars, admitted that his team knowingly promoted fake stories about Islamberg, a rural religious community founded by mostly Black Muslims from New York City on the border between New York and Pennsylvania.

According to Owens, InfoWars initially conducted interviews with people near the community, hoping that they would tell horror stories about a group of militants hellbent on enslaving America under Sharia law. Instead, locals described the people of Islamberg as “kind, generous neighbors.” This wasn’t a story Alex Jones would have been able to sell to his far-right conspiracy theorist audience — so, Owens said, his team decided to just lie.

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“The information did not meet our expectations, so we made it up, preying on the vulnerable and feeding the prejudices and fears of Jones’s audience,” wrote Owens, who resigned not long after the Islamberg stories were published. “We ignored certain facts, fabricated others and took situations out of context to fit our narrative.”

Some of the headlines, according to the Times, included “Shariah Law Zones Confirmed in America,” “Report: Obama’s Terror Cells in the U.S.,” and “The Rumors Are True: Shariah Law Is Here!”


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Rest in pieces, Redskins. Now here are sports’ other weird, dumb or suspect nicknames

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They are out there. Fans of the Washington football club formerly known as “Redskins” who are genuinely upset that their team is burying some of its tradition and heritage with the nickname change that the franchise officially announced Monday was coming.Which invites the question: Can you be indignant and angry while simultaneously wearing a rubber hog’s nose strapped on your face?Oft times elements of tradition and heritage are lousy things to celebrate. Slavery, for example.Fans angry at the disappearance of Redskins show the same misplaced outrage you see from folks attaching great signifi... (more…)

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Roger Stone, coronavirus and the upcoming months that may destroy America as we know it

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From the Electoral College to structural racism, America is feeling painfully aware of its inherent flaws these days. None looms more ominously now than that awkward moment that is the presidential transition. In the momentous winter of 1860-61, the United States literally split in two during the haze between the failed presidency of Pennsylvania’s James Buchanan and the first-ever Republican administration of Abraham Lincoln that terrified the slave-addled South.Now consider this scenario: A seemingly unending crisis has ripped millions of jobs from the U.S. economy, with a growing homelessne... (more…)

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There will be ‘no return to the old normal for foreseeable future’: International health expert

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"If the basics aren't followed, there is only one way this pandemic is going to go. It's going to get worse and worse and worse."

The head of the World Health Organization warned Monday that a "return to the 'old normal'" was not in "the foreseeable future" and urged global leaders to act cooperatively to control the coronavirus pandemic.

"Let me blunt, too many countries are headed in the wrong direction," WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a media briefing.

Tedros's remarks came as the total number of total coronavirus cases continued ticking upward, nearing 13 million globally. More than 570,000 Covid-19 deaths have been recorded worldwide, over 134,000 of which were in the United States.

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