*(Via The Conversation) – Increased funding, targeted prevention efforts and better treatment have helped to slow down the HIV epidemic in the United States. The number of new HIV-positive cases has decreased significantly, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with the number of new HIV diagnoses declining by 19 percent from 2005 to 2014.
This is not the case in many parts of the country, however. As AIDS and public health researchers, we are among those who are alarmed by areas in the southern United States where the numbers of cases have not declined and even more by the areas in which increases have occurred.
*We can only shake our collective heads at what’s happening to a straight-A honor student who is facing a possible 10-day in-school suspension all because he unknowingly used counterfeit money to purchase his lunch.
The school is even considering this punishment in spite of the student’s parents filing a police report regarding the counterfeit $20 bill.
If you don’t already know about her, meet Howard University senior, Latroya Pina. She’s getting ready to compete in the 2020 Summer Olympic Games on the first-ever Cape Verde National Swim Team in Tokyo, Japan.
However, Latroya is not the only Pina competing in the Olympics. Her siblings, Troy and Jayla, will also join her on the inaugural swim team and make history as a family.
*You could argue that this is a case of taking fandom too far. So far that it got a pair of Texas politicians in hot water that they had to resign. What did they do? They allegedly misused public funds to attend an event on Michelle Obama’s book tour.
As a result, Forest Hill, Texas, Mayor Lyndia Thomas and Mayor Pro Tem Beckie Hayes submitted their resignations on Wednesday, ahead of a public hearing over alleged misconduct and expenses related to the former first lady’s book tour event in Dallas last year.
*The Pan African Film & Arts Festival announced that it will celebrate its 27th Annual Opening Night with a screening of Aretha Franklin’s cherished Amazing Grace concert documentary at the Directors Guild of America.
The festival, which presents an impressive slate of over 170 new Black films from the US and around the world and exhibits more than 100 fine artists and unique craftspeople, starts on Thursday, February 7 through Monday, February 18 at the Cinemark Rave 15 Theatres (3650 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd) and the adjacent Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza in Los Angeles, California.
The Christmas spirit hasn’t quite spread to the town of Old Bridge, New Jersey yet this season. The town is threatening to shut down the extravagant light display at the home of Thomas and Kris Apruzzi if they do not pay $2,000 per night for security.
*There’s an interesting situation going on in Mexico of all places. In Tijuana, immigrants from Haiti have found a welcoming home and have set up what appears to be a small, but growing community on it’s way to sustaining itself, reports the San Diego Union:
For John Arold Lazarre, the plan was to migrate to Miami, to join his aunts, uncles and cousins there. He would build a new life in the United States and send money home to his young son and widowed mother in La Gonâve, Haiti.
Tijuana? That was never his dream.
But now a year after arriving at Mexico’s northern border, the 29-year-old migrant has no plans to move away. “I never want to go anywhere illegally again,” Lazarre said one night last week as he prepared for an overnight shift helping guide airplanes at Tijuana’s A.L.Rodríguez International Airport.