breaking news


Prince remembered throughout Minneapolis 1 year after death

Published: Wednesday, April 19, 2017 @ 9:51 AM

A lone jogger sprinted down the pathway between the hulking white Paisley Park compound and Minnesota Highway 5, indifferent to the history living on the other side of the sagging chain-link fence.

A purple makeshift wall on the property – the Prince4Ever Tribute Fence – cluttered with fan-donated mementos and photos, remained off limits Tuesday as Paisley Park closed to prepare for Celebration 2017, a four-day event launching Thursday.

The first anniversary of Prince’s still incomprehensible death arrives Friday, and the commemorative gathering is expected to attract about 2,000 fans from 28 countries, as well as offering musical performances from The Revolution, Morris Day & The Time and New Power Generation – a collective hug to honor the memory of the musical titan who died of an accidental opioid overdose at 57.

>> Read more trending news

Although Paisley Park, located about 30 minutes from downtown Minneapolis in the suburban enclave of Chanhassen, now functions as a museum – a quick turnaround from studio to tourist attraction by the same folks who manage Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee – many fans have chosen to contribute to a “Graffiti Bridge” of sorts a few steps from the property.

The Riley Creek underpass, which connects Lake Ann Park and Paisley Park, was, before April 21, 2016, a naked slab of curved concrete.

Now, spray-painted R.I.P.s and messages of sadness, hope and gratitude are etched on the walls.

“Purple rain is what we bleed,” read one, while another also invoked a Prince lyric: “There’s something else…the afterlife.”

While Prince spent his later years in his Chanhassen hideaway – an area that was devoid of commercialism when he built it in the ‘80s but now resides less than a mile from a Target and across the street from a day care center – his loss is hardly relegated to the city of about 25,000.

In nearby St. Paul, the Minnesota History Center retrieved one of its treasured artifacts – the purple coat and white, ruffled shirt Prince wore in his 1984 career-making “Purple Rain” movie – to put on display this week.

The outfit, which Prince gave to the Minnesota Historical Society in 1992, is in danger of fading, so it can make only brief public appearances.

St. Paul residents Jason and Rachel Gorski donned purple attire Tuesday evening specifically to visit the small exhibit at the History Center.

“He and I were born the same year,” Jason Gorski said. “I’m trying to maintain just a tenth of his coolness.”

Rachel Gorski, 50, said she and her friends became Prince fans in high school.

“It was wild to be here (in Minnesota) when he died. The entire energy of the city was just down. People would cry spontaneously,” she said.

But, like many of Prince’s fans, the Gorskis eventually found a way to combat the sadness – they attended a Prince tribute show with Morris Day & The Time at the famed First Avenue music club in downtown Minneapolis and “danced the night away.”

Jason Gorski is confident that Prince’s legacy is solidified for generations.

“He will beat time because he has 100 more years of music (in the vault),” Gorski said. “It’s just too bad he won’t be here to spread it.”

It’s probably not an exaggeration to say that everyone who lives in Minneapolis has some sort of Prince story.

But it makes sense that the staff at the Electric Fetus, a funky independent record shop that has been a musical mainstay in this city since 1968, would have much to say about one of the shop’s most famous, and most loyal, customers.

Fans might recall that Prince visited the store on Record Store Day 2016, five days before he died. He tweeted his thanks on April 16, and noted that he “rocked” a Stevie Wonder album on the way home (he also scooped up albums by Santana and Missing Persons).

Despite his obvious feelings of nostalgia that day, Prince was renowned for his interest in new artists.

“He would always be on top of the new music,” said David “Chilly” Caufman, who has worked at Electric Fetus for 18 years. “He really supported the scene here. He loved supporting local businesses.”

The store, unsurprisingly, has created a Prince sales display of books, candles and T-shirts, as well as a mug with the inscription from that final tweet.

 

Trump travel ban: Supreme Court allows key parts to go into effect

Published: Monday, June 26, 2017 @ 10:01 AM

FILE - This Jan. 25, 2012, file photo, shows the U.S. Supreme Court Building in Washington. The Supreme Court enters its final week of work before a long summer hiatus with action expected on the Trump administration’s travel ban and a decision due in a separation of church and state case that arises from a Missouri church playground.
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File
  • Updated at 10:42: The Supreme Court will allow part of the travel ban to take effect; some immigrants will be banned from entering the country. 
  • Update at 10:29 a.m. ET: The  Supreme Court has ruled that it will hear arguments over President Donald Trump’s second executive order banning travel to the United States.


Original story:

The Supreme Court will rule on Monday whether to hear the challenge to President Donald Trump’s executive order banning immigration from several predominately Muslim nations.

That executive order and the revised order that followed were both challenged in lower courts, which ruled in favor of the states that brought suit, setting up today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Here’s what can happen Monday and some background on the executive order.

What is the ban?

The original ban was issued on January 27, 2017, and it did the following:

- Suspended the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program for 120 days

- Cut the number of refugees to 50,000 in 2017

- Banned Syrian refugees from entry into the United States indefinitely

- Barred immigrants from seven predominantly Muslim countries -- Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen -- from entering the United States for 90 days.

How was it revised?

The revised order, executive order 13780, removed Iraq from the list of nations included in the ban, allowed refugees already approved by the State Department to enter the U.S. and lifted the ban on Syrian refugees. It was to go into effect at midnight on March 16, 2017.

What will happen on Monday?

The court will do one of three things Monday. It will either uphold Trump’s ban, refuse to hear the case or say it will hear the case in the fall when the court reconvenes.

What happens if the Supreme Court rules in Trump’s favor?

If the court rules in favor of the administration, the ban can be implemented within 72 hours.

What happens if the justices refuse to hear the case?

If the justices refuse to review the case, the lower court rulings will stand, stopping the Trump administration from banning entry into the U.S. based on the country from which a person emigrates.

Will the Supreme Court hear arguments?

Justices could choose to hear arguments about the ban in the fall. In the meantime, the lower court orders would stand.

What is the background?

President Trump signed an executive order that would ban refugees and immigrants from seven mostly Muslim countries from entering the United States for 90 days and would suspend a refugee program for 120 days. It would also ban Syrian refugees from entering the country.

That order sparked protests around the country and around the world. The states of Washington, Oregon, Minnesota, New York, Massachusetts and Hawaii filed suits over the ban.

In three days, from January 28 to January 31, 50 cases were filed against the order.

The courts granted a nationwide temporary restraining order that suspended much of the order. The 9th District Court of Appeals upheld the restraining orders.

A revised order was issued in March. That order, like the first, ran into legal challenges. A judge in Hawaii suspended the revised order, ruling that if the ban went into effect, it would likely cause "irreparable injury" by violating protections granted by the First Amendment against religious discrimination.

The judge said tweets by Trump suggested that the order sought to ban people on the basis of their religion, and not in the interest of national security, as Trump had claimed. 

 
 
 
 
 

Pilot asks passengers to pray when plane violently shakes midair

Published: Monday, June 26, 2017 @ 9:58 AM



NuttKomo/Getty Images

The pilot of an Air Asia flight told passengers to say a prayer when the plane started to violently shake.

>> Read more trending news

One passenger said the cabin was shuddering like a washing machine.

The Airbus A330-300 aircraft with 359 passengers headed to Malaysia turned back to Australia Sunday, about 90 minutes into the six-hour flight.

>> Related: Flight attendants recreate Britney Spears' 'Toxic' video

"Lots of people crying. Lots of people pulling out the life jackets and stuff, pretty much preparing for that sort of thing. We thought there was a good chance that we were going down," one passenger said.

"We were asleep and heard a loud bang around the 1 hour and 15 minute mark," another passenger, Damien Stevens, told CNN. "It shook for the whole ride back, close on two hours."

Stevens said the pilot asked passengers to pray at least two times during the flight.

According to Fox News, the pilot, who has 44 years of flying experience, also asked passengers to “keep an eye on” the engine outside their windows because he didn’t have clear visibility from the cabin.

>> Related: Pilot 'congratulates' passengers for drinking all alcohol on plane

The plane landed safely in Australia and no one was hurt.

Investigators are trying to determine what caused the "technical issue."

>> Related: Baby born on flight gets free plane tickets for life

"We are aware of the incident and will be working closely with relevant partners to understand the cause of the issue," said a spokesman for Rolls-Royce, the company that manufactured the plane’s engine.

Brianna Chambers contributed to this report.

Alaska Airlines to host eclipse-chasing flight in August

Published: Monday, June 26, 2017 @ 8:59 AM

Alaska Airlines will be chasing the first coast-to-coast total solar eclipse in United States history since 1918.

>> Read more trending news

On August 21, a special charter flight for select astronomy enthusiasts and eclipse chasers will allow passengers to see the eclipse from more than 35,000 feet above the earth.

The flight will depart Portland at 7:30 a.m. and fly off the coast of Oregon, allowing passengers on board to be among the first of millions to witness the eclipse.

» Related: Rare total solar eclipse visible from America in 2017 

Though the flight is invitation-only, Alaska Airlines is giving one person and a guest a chance to win a seat on the flight. The contest begins July 21 on Alaska Airlines' social media channels.

While the partial eclipse will be visible from all over North America, the total eclipse will only be visible from specific locations across the United States.

» Related: These are the best places to see the incredibly rare Great American Eclipse coming this summer

The airline said flights to the prime Pacific Northwest viewing destinations of Redmond, Oregon, and Sun Valley, Idaho, during the week of the eclipse are already filling up.

$1M welfare fraud investigation ends in arrests, police say

Published: Monday, June 26, 2017 @ 7:53 AM

A rabbi is among several people in New Jersey who were arrested Monday in raids by federal and state authorities in a multimillion-dollar welfare fraud investigation.

>> Read more trending news 

Rabbi Zalmen Sorotzkin and seven others are being charged, accused of taking public assistance and defrauding the government of $1.3 million over recent years, law enforcement officials told the Asbury Park Press.

Investigators said that the accused had plans that, a source told the Asbury Park Press, “rival the most sophisticated of financial frauds.”

Officials said the people involved under-reported their income. In exchange, they were able to qualify for Medicaid, Section 8 housing assistance, food stamps, Social Security disability and Supplemental Security Income, the Asbury Park Press reported.

Officials said the accused, who are four married couples, made thousands of dollars more a year than they told program officials.

Investigators said they traced illegal money transfers, along with records from private schools for tuition. 

Law enforcement officials said they believe that Monday’s arrest will be the first in a series of arrests in a larger fraud ring.