In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what’s on the radar of our editors for the morning of June 2 …
American anti-racism protests …
Wielding extraordinary federal authority, President Donald Trump threatened the nation’s governors that he would deploy the military to states if they did not stamp out violent protests over police brutality that have roiled the nation over the past week. His announcement came as police under federal command forced back peaceful demonstrators with tear gas so he could walk to a nearby church and pose with a Bible.
Trump’s bellicose rhetoric came as the nation convulsed through another round of violence over the death of George Floyd at a time when the country is already buckling under the coronavirus outbreak and the Depression-level unemployment it has caused. The president demanded an end to the heated protests in remarks from the White House Rose Garden and vowed to use more force to achieve that aim.
If governors throughout the country do not deploy the National Guard in sufficient numbers to “dominate the streets,” Trump said the U.S. military would step in to “quickly solve the problem for them.”
“We have the greatest country in the world,” the president declared. “We’re going to keep it safe.”
A military deployment by Trump to U.S. states would mark a stunning federal intervention rarely seen in modern American history. Yet the message Trump appeared to be sending with the brazen pushback of protesters outside the White House was that he sees few limits to what he is willing to do.
Some around the president likened the moment to 1968, when Richard Nixon ran as the law-and-order candidate in the aftermath of a summer of riots, capturing the White House. But despite his efforts to portray himself as a political outsider, Trump is an incumbent who risks being held responsible for the violence.
Minutes before Trump began speaking, police and National Guard soldiers began aggressively forcing back hundreds of peaceful protesters who had gathered in Lafayette Park, across the street from the White House, where they were chanting against police brutality and Floyd’s death in Minneapolis. As Trump spoke, tear gas canisters could be heard exploding.
Also this …
As protesters keep up their anti-racism rallies on both sides of the border, top health officials are hoping they don’t forget about the risk of COVID-19.
Canadian health officials are not suggesting people avoid protests, but they are stressing the importance of hand sanitizer and masks.
With physical distance being nearly impossible in some of these settings, rally-goers may have to find other ways to try to keep themselves safe.
Protests have taken place in several Canadian cities in the aftermath of a black man dying last week in Minneapolis after a white police officer pressed a knee into his neck.
George Floyd’s death has sent throngs into the streets in several U.S. and Canadian cities to decry systemic racism and police brutality.
Meanwhile, House of Commons Speaker Anthony Rota is scheduled today to appear at a committee on procedure and House affairs.
He is expected to discuss the hybrid parliament and how it is functioning during the pandemic.
The Senate finance committee also meets today with many major industry leaders set to appear.
COVID-19 in Ontario …
Ontario is expected today to extend its state of emergency until June 30.
The measure bans gatherings larger than five people.
It also orders the closure of some businesses such as restaurants and bars, except if they offer takeout or delivery.
If the vote passes, the measure — which had been set to expire today — will be extended for another 28 days.
Ontario declared a state of emergency on March 17 as COVID-19 cases began to climb in the province.
COVID-19 in sports …
It looks like hockey fans will be able to cheer on their favourite NHL team this summer but Canadians have issued a collective shrug about whether the Stanley Cup is hoisted on their home ice.
Less than one-quarter of those who took part in a recent survey said it was very important that a Canadian city be host to some of the playoffs.
The web survey, conducted by polling firm Leger and the Association for Canadian Studies, found 47 per cent thought it wasn’t important that the puck drop in a Canadian arena.
The NHL plans to resume its 2019-20 season, brought to a halt in March by the COVID-19 pandemic, with games played in two hub cities.
Edmonton, Vancouver and Toronto are among the 10 possible locations, but Canada’s mandatory 14-day quarantine for people entering the country remains in place and could scuttle the prospect of hockey north of the 49th parallel.
Snowbird crash investigation …
Military investigators are pointing to video footage as the reason they suspect a bird strike was been responsible for last month’s deadly Snowbird plane crash in British Columbia.
The crash was May 18, shortly after two of the Snowbirds’ iconic Tutor jets took off from the Kamloops Airport while participating in a cross-country tour aimed at boosting Canadians’ morale during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Video posted to social media shortly after the crash showed one of the planes climbing a few seconds after leaving the runway before rolling over in the air and plummeting into a residential neighbourhood.
The crash killed Capt. Jenn Casey, the Snowbirds’ public-affairs officer who was riding as a passenger, while the pilot, Capt. Richard MacDougall, sustained serious but non-life-threatening injuries. Both ejected from the plane seconds before it hit the ground.
No one on the ground was seriously hurt.
In a preliminary report released Monday, investigators confirmed that a close examination of video showed a bird very close to the plane’s right engine intake “during the critical phase of take-off.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 2, 2020
The Canadian Press