Top News: (2/21-2/27)


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Biden picks Ketanji Brown Jackson as historic U.S. Supreme Court nominee:

Ketanji Brown Jackson, nominated to be a U.S. Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia Circuit, testifies before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on pending judicial nominations on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., April 28, 2021. Tom Williams/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo


President Joe Biden nominated federal appellate judge Ketanji Brown Jackson on Friday to the Supreme Court. This fulfills President Biden’s two-year-old campaign promise to appoint a black woman to the court. The appointment will likely lead to a confirmation battle in the closely contested senate. If this happens, then Democrats can use the Vice President’s tie-breaking vote to push through the nomination with zero Republican support. If she makes it through confirmation, then Jackson will join the Supreme Court as one of three liberal justices of the nine total. She served representing the district of Columbia on the US Court of Appeals. This nomination gives Biden an opportunity to shore up support ahead of midterm elections.



Ukraine invasion: What to know as Russian forces target Kyiv:

Ukrainian troops inspect the site following a Russian airstrike in Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)


Russian forces began closing in on Ukraine’s capital of Kiev on Saturday, following up on a barrage of airstrikes hitting cities and military bases. Ukrainian officials have reported some success in fending off the Russian onslaught though fighting still persists near the capital. Russia has been put under more pressure internationally as countries pledge to help Ukraine in the conflict. One example of this is Germany which pledged on Saturday to quickly send 1,000 anti-tank weapons and 500 “Stinger” surface-to-air missiles to Ukraine. Ukrainian President Zelinskyy was urged by the US government to evacuate Kyiv but he refused the offer saying, “the fight is here.” The United States estimates that more than half of the forces Russia had arranged along the border have entered Ukraine, up from Friday’s estimate of one-third. Although Russia claims its assault is focused exclusively on military targets, bridges, schools, and residential neighborhoods have been hit and civilians killed. UN officials say that at least 100,000 individuals have fled Ukraine to Poland, Romania, Hungary and other neighboring countries with that number rapidly increasing.



A Homemade Bumper Sticker Saved a Stranger’s Life After She Asked the Universe For ‘a Sign’:

Twitter/@Brooke_Lacey


When you’re headed down a dark road and feeling hopeless, sometimes all it takes to get you headed back in the right direction is a little sign, or in this case, a bumper sticker. Like many who have felt the mental health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, 22-year-old university student Brooke Lacey had her share of issues. After Lacey won her battle against depression, in the hope of helping others, the New Zealand native was inspired to create a batch of 600 signs that read: “Please don’t take your life today. The world is so much better with you in it. More than you realize, stay.” Lacey hung laminated versions of the message on bridges and overpasses, and next to railroads and waterways around the capital city of Wellington. She even had the saying inscribed on a bumper sticker. But the sentiment was the furthest thing from her mind when she found a piece of very unusual correspondence on the windshield of the car she’d parked in the university lot. “I left my house with a plan and asked for a sign, any sign, I was doing the right thing when I saw your car in the parking lot,” the note read. As long as the message is heartfelt, even something as simple as a sign, or a bumper sticker, can save a life.



Your Brain Doesn’t Slow Down Until You’re in Your 60s – Later Than Thought:

Mental speed, which is the speed at which we can deal with issues requiring rapid decision-making, does not change substantially over decades. Psychologists at Heidelberg University have come to this conclusion. Under the leadership of Dr Mischa von Krause and Dr Stefan Radev, they evaluated data from a large-scale online experiment with over a million participants. The findings of the new study suggest that the speed of cognitive information processing remains largely stable between the ages of 20 and 60, and only deteriorates at higher ages. Another finding of the study was that average information processing speed only progressively declined with participants over the age of 60. The Heidelberg researchers have hereby called into question the assumption to date that mental speed starts to decline already in early adulthood. In order to verify this theory, the researchers reevaluated data from a large-scale American study on implicit biases. When evaluating the data, Dr von Krause and his colleagues noted that, on average, the response times of the test subjects rose with increasing age. However, with the aid of a mathematical model, they were able to show that this phenomenon was not due to changes in mental speed.



Sources:

Biden picks Ketanji Brown Jackson as historic U.S. Supreme Court nominee | Reuters

Ukraine invasion: What to know as Russian forces target Kyiv | AP News

Your Brain Doesn't Slow Down Until You're in Your 60s – Later Than Thought (goodnewsnetwork.org)

A Homemade Bumper Sticker Saved a Stranger's Life After She Asked the Universe For ‘a Sign' (goodnewsnetwork.org)

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