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Living plastic-free: One activist fights a rising tide of pollution

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Dianna Cohen is on alert. From the newspaper on her front stoop each morning, to the clothes she will pick up at the dry cleaner, to the lunch she’ll eat, to the shelves at her seemingly eco-friendly health food store — Cohen’s nemesis appears everywhere.

The world seems to be wrapped in plastic — and Cohen is not buying it. She is fighting to lead a life free of plastics, and to get others to do the same.

The Los Angeles native has taken her campaign against plastic waste — an annoyance of her youth and later the medium of her work as a visual artist — and made it her life’s cause.

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Photo illustration of a plastic bag and empty milk carton.NBC News / Getty Images

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Click the link below for the article:

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/living-plastic-free-one-activist-fights-rising-tide-pollution-n972106

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The Strategic Mind of Ali Wong

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When Ali Wong’s debut special, “Baby Cobra,” had its premiere on Mother’s Day in 2016, very few people outside of the comedy world knew who Ms. Wong was and there was little reason to think this hour or so of jokes would change that. She had trouble selling out shows and no one submitted the special for Emmy consideration because what would be the point? And while Netflix had an impressive track record of showcasing stand-up stars, it had never made one — until Ali Wong.

“Baby Cobra” presented something new, a pregnant woman in her third trimester delivering a deliriously filthy and funny hour of comedy woven into a sneakily feminist assault on the double standards of parenting. Pioneers like Joan Rivers, who had also performed pregnant, and Roseanne Barr paved the way with biting jokes about motherhood and domesticity, but Ms. Wong made maternal comedy seem more glamorous, sexual and overtly political.

She alternated jokes about the injustice of how little is expected of fathers with lustful tributes to the sex appeal of Asian men. “They got no body hair from the neck down,” she says in the special. “It’s like making love to a dolphin.”

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When others ask how her husband feels about her success Ali Wong replies, “It’s not hard to feel good about your spouse making money.”CreditElizabeth Weinberg for The New York Times

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Click link below for article:

https://www.nytimes.com

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Exclusive: 5 Women Sue Monster Energy Over Abusive, Discriminatory Culture

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Even as he awaits a criminal trial for allegedly strangling his girlfriend during a business trip in 2016, Brent Hamilton is still the head of music marketing at Monster Energy, the multibillion-dollar beverage company partly owned by Coca-Cola.

John Kenneally is a vice president at Monster despite three women accusing him of bullying, harassment and retaliation. They say he actively undermined their reputations and forced them out of the company. HuffPost obtained text messages he sent to one of these women, in which he described her as a “whore,” made a racially charged comment about “black dicks,” and used the term “bitch” to refer to both her and another female employee. 

Another manager, Phillip Deitrich, regularly humiliated a female subordinate in front of co-workers and sabotaged her ability to work effectively, according to a sex discrimination lawsuit she filed. He still has a job. She left the company.

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Sara Rabuse said Brent Hamilton (right) charmed her early on and she fell in love.

Sara Rabuse

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Click link below for article and video:

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/monster-energy-lawsuits_us_5a6280c1e4b002283002ca27

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On The Road Of Destruction To The Thomas Fire

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There is smoke everywhere.

It’s Monday morning at 10 a.m., and I’m driving north up California’s famously stunning coastline toward the Thomas fire, the largest and most uncontrolled of five massive wildfires that have brought devastation to Southern California for the past week. I can see the enormous gloom ahead from 50 miles away ― brown smoke hovering over the southern edge of a fire that had consumed a staggering 230,000 acres so far.

I’m on my way to Ventura County, where the fire first began on Dec. 4 and from where it would eventually grow into the fifth largest in state history over the week that followed. Ventura is an iconic place, a once rugged beach town known for its citrus fruit farming and local surf spots, so often overshadowed by its big neighbor, Los Angeles. 

By the time I got there, a grey haze had once again settled over the county, and smoke filled the air. To the east, a massive fire was rapidly spreading, producing a thick brown smoke cloud that reached all the way north, to Santa Barbara County. Firefighters and firetrucks peppered the landscape, racing toward the still active sections of the blaze while other rigs drove further up the coast. A pizza delivery driver wore a dust mask to keep some of the smoke out of his lungs as he carried on with his day.

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Marcus Yam via Getty Images

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Click link below for article:

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/thomas-fire-reporter_us_5a30598ae4b07ff75afe89b2

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Della Reese, ‘Touched by an Angel’ star and R&B Singer, dies at 86

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Della Reese, who segued from pop and jazz singing stardom in the 1950s and ’60s to a long career as a popular TV actress on “Touched by an Angel” and other shows, died Sunday night at her home in California. She was 86.

“She was an incredible wife, mother, grandmother, friend, and pastor, as well as an award-winning actress and singer. Through her life and work she touched and inspired the lives of millions of people,” Reese’s family said in a statement. “She was a mother to me and I had the privilege of working with her side by side for so many years on ‘Touched by an Angel.’ I know heaven has a brand new angel this day. Della Reese will be forever in our hearts.”

Reared in gospel, Reese became a seductive, big-voiced secular music star with her No. 1 R&B and No. 2 pop hit “Don’t You Know” in 1959. The 45, her first single on RCA Records, was a ballad drawn from an aria from Puccini’s opera “La Boheme.”

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Image: Della Reese sings during the Detroit 300 festival

Della Reese sings during the Detroit 300 festival on July 20, 2001 in Detroit. Paul Warner / AP

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Click link below for article:

https://www.nbcnews.com/pop-culture/pop-culture-news/della-reese-touched-angel-star-r-b-singer-dies-86-n822571

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California Wildfires: Officials Get More Than 100 Missing Person Reports

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Sonoma County said it had received more than 100 phone calls to its missing person hotline as wind-powered wildfires swept through California wine country overnight, destroying at least 1,500 homes.

Officials said they were combing through the calls and believed some could be duplicates.

At least 10 people have died in the blazes as more than a dozen wildfires consumed parts of California wine country. Gov. Jerry Brown declared an emergency in eight counties, including Napa and Sonoma, and asked for a federal declaration of a major disaster for the entire state.

Sonoma County Sheriff Rob Giordano said seven people had been killed there in fire-related incidents — and “that number’s going to change.” The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection confirmed that two people had been killed in Napa County, as well as one person in Mendocino County.

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Image: A helicopter drops water on a wind-driven wildfire
A helicopter drops water on a wind-driven wildfire in Orange, California on Monday. Mike Blake / Reuters

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Click link below for article and video:

https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/western-wildfires/one-killed-major-wildfires-ignite-overnight-across-northern-california-n809206

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Harvey Weinstein Will Remain on Leave as Company Investigates Harassment Claims

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Harvey Weinstein’s movie company said Friday it would investigate allegations that the Hollywood producer sexually harassed women inside and outside the company for years. Weinstein will go on an indefinite leave of absence during the probe, the company said.

The board of the Weinstein Company met Friday and decided to hire a law firm to delve into allegations revealed in an article published in The New York Times, which quoted several women who alleged they were sexually harassed, including actress Ashley Judd. The article said several women received financial settlements over the years.

“We strongly endorse Harvey Weinstein’s already-announced decision to take an indefinite leave of absence from the Company, commencing today,” the board said in a statement Friday evening. “As Harvey has said, it is important for him to get professional help for the problems he has acknowledged.”

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Image: Harvey Weinstein At Awards Dinner Harvey Weinstein attends the annual Appeal of Conscience awards dinner at the New York Hilton on September 18, 2017. Tim Boxer / Getty Images file

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Click link below for article and video:

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/harvey-weinstein-will-remain-leave-company-investigates-harassment-claims-n808536

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