Video Player Close by Matthew Rusling WASHINGTON, March 4 (Xinhua) -- Apart from working hard to get the COVID-19 pandemic under control, U.S. President Joe Biden is under pressure to take action on the country's "epidemic of gun violence." Biden called on Congress to enact "commonsense gun law reforms" last month on the third anniversary of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, southeastern state of Florida, which claimed 17 lives, including 14 students. "Today, I am calling on Congress to enact commonsense gun law reforms, including requiring background checks on all gun sales, banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and eliminating immunity for gun manufacturers who knowingly put weapons of war on our streets," Biden said in a statement. Stressing there was no time to wait, Biden said his administration "will take action to end our epidemic of gun violence and make our schools and communities safer." Democratic-led ... » Learn More about World Insights: Biden under pressure to act on America’s gun violence
Standoff game school shooting
While there have already been a few releases since the cinema halls reopened in the state, Bali, featuring Swapnil Joshi , will be the first big film with a leading star from the Marathi industry to hit screens. Speaking to us, Swapnil says, “I am excited that we are doing this and am personally elated to be a part of this restarting phase for cinemas.” In the days following the government's nod to reopen cinemas after the COVID-19 induced lockdown phase, many filmmakers were waiting to see what the reaction from viewers would be. Ask Swapnil what prompted them to decide on the release in April and he shares, “Someone needs to take a step forward. I feel bigger producers have the power to draw viewers to the screens and the moolah to back their films in such trying times. That’s why we decided to take the plunge.” The Duniyadari actor was one of the first ones from the industry to begin work post the lockdown restrictions was eased and he even completed shooting for a ... » Learn More about Swapnil Joshi: Releasing films right now is a catch-22 situation; no one knows what will happen
The next major flashpoint over coronavirus response has already provoked cries of tyranny and discrimination in Britain, protests in Denmark, digital disinformation in the United States and geopolitical skirmishing within the European Union . The subject of debate: vaccine passports — government-issued cards or smartphone badges stating that the bearer has been inoculated against the coronavirus. The idea is to allow families to reunite, economies to restart and hundreds of millions of people who have received a shot to return to a degree of normalcy, all without spreading the virus. Some versions of the documentation might permit bearers to travel internationally. Others would allow entry to vaccinated-only spaces like gyms, concert venues and restaurants. While such passports are still hypothetical in most places, Israel became the first to roll out its own last week, capitalizing on its high vaccination rate. Several European countries are considering following. ... » Learn More about Vaccine passports, Covid’s next political flashpoint
A growing number of youngsters aspire to be social media influencers for fame and fortune. But experts warn about a narcissitic trend that can be devastating for youths. Wang Yuke reports from Hong Kong. If Hong Kong's big-time fortune tellers can strike gold by amassing a huge following over time, there's a group of young go-getters trying to take a leaf out of their book — social media influencers. But the luck and instinct that may guarantee one's success in any field of endeavor simply don't fall from the sky. It could be a make-it-or-break-it move. Kenson, 10, is nothing short of a toy influencer in Hong Kong despite his tender age. "I often come across strangers recognizing me on the street. They would leap at me, excitedly shout out my name and ask for selfies," says Kenson shyly. "I was happy about it but it, somehow, set me on edge." While many young YouTubers wallow in stardom and the glee of being lionized, being a household name is not on Kenson's priority list. ... » Learn More about Wallowing in stardom or a minefield?