Happening Today: ‘Tender Age’ Shelters, Smoking, Hogweed, XXXTentacion, Seth MacFarlane

What to Know

  • Officials have been sending babies and other young children forcibly separated from their parents at the border to 'tender age' shelters
  • About 14 percent of U.S adults were smokers last year, which is down from about 16 percent the year before, government figures show
  • The lawyer for slain rapper XXXTentacion said detectives believe he was killed in a random robbery while likely planning to buy a motorcycle

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Youngest Migrants Held in “Tender Age” Shelters

Trump administration officials have been sending babies and other young children forcibly separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border to at least three "tender age" shelters in South Texas. Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the Rio Grande Valley shelters described play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis. The government also plans to open a fourth shelter to house hundreds of young migrant children in Houston, where city leaders denounced the move. Since the White House announced its zero tolerance policy in early May, more than 2,300 children have been taken from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, resulting in a new influx of young children requiring government care. The government has faced withering critiques over images of some of the children in cages inside U.S. Border Patrol processing stations. Decades after the nation's child welfare system ended the use of orphanages over concerns about the lasting trauma to children, the administration is standing up new institutions to hold Central American toddlers that the government separated from their parents.

Trump Raises Risk of Economically Harmful U.S.-China Trade War

The United States and China edged closer to triggering the riskiest trade war in decades, a fight that could weaken the world's two largest economies, unsettle relations between Beijing and Washington and crimp global growth. The collateral damage could be widespread. If the tariffs the two countries have threatened to slap on each other's exports take effect, their consumers would have to pay higher retail prices. Companies would pay more for imported parts and would have to decide whether to absorb those higher costs — or pass them on to their customers. American farmers could be evicted from a lucrative market for their goods. U.S. companies, from Caterpillar to Qualcomm, would likely face obstruction from regulators in China, a market they rely on for an outsize share of sales. World financial markets buckled after President Trump ratcheted up the tensions by proposing a fresh batch of tariffs on Chinese products.

Smoking Hits New Low: About 14 Percent of U.S. Adults

Smoking in the U.S. has hit another all-time low. About 14 percent of U.S adults were smokers last year, down from about 16 percent the year before, government figures show. There hadn't been much change the previous two years, but it's been clear there's been a general decline and the new figures show it's continuing, said K. Michael Cummings of the tobacco research program at Medical University of South Carolina. The new figures mean there are still more than 30 million adult smokers in the U.S., he added. Teens are also shunning cigarettes. Survey results out last week showed smoking among high school students was down to 9 percent, also a new low. In the early 1960s, roughly 42 percent of U.S. adults smoked.

Giant Plant That Can Cause Blindness, Burns Found in U.S.

A large leafy plant that can cause third-degree burns and blindness has been found in Virginia for the first time, researchers say. A patch of 30 giant hogweed plants were identified by Virginia Tech scientists last week in Berryville, Virginia, which is about 10 miles east of Winchester, the university announced. Giant hogweed can grow to be 15 feet tall. Its sap strips skin’s natural ability to protect itself from ultraviolet rays. It can lead to large blisters and severe burns, a University of Maryland Extension publication says. If the sap gets into one's eyes, blindness or sensitivity to light can occur. The plant has clusters of small white flowers and serrated, pointy leaves that grow to 5 feet wide and look a bit like a maple leaf.

Police Think Slaying of XXXTentacion Was Random, Rapper’s Lawyer Says

The lawyer for slain rapper XXXTentacion said detectives believe he was shot and killed in a random robbery while likely planning to buy a motorcycle at an upscale shop near a low-income neighborhood in South Florida. Attorney David Bogenschutz said investigators also told him the 20-year-old rapper, who pronounced his stage name "Ex Ex Ex ten-ta-see-YAWN," had visited a bank shortly before the shooting and possibly withdrew cash for the purchase. No arrests have been made in the shooting at Riva Motosports in Deerfield Beach. XXXTentacion, whose real name was Jahseh Dwayne Onfroy, was exiting the shop's parking lot in his luxury BMW electric car when he was shot. The Broward Sheriff's Office says deputies are searching for two suspects who fled in a dark SUV.

Seth MacFarlane Donates $2.5 M to NPR After Fox Slam

Five days after Fox News host Tucker Carlson told viewers to discredit anything they hear on rival news networks, “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane donated a combined $2.5 million to NPR and its Los Angeles affiliate, an NPR spokeswoman told NBC. MacFarlane gave $2 million to NPR for its Collaborative Journalism Network and $500,000 to NPR station KPCC. KPCC President Bill Davis said MacFarlane's donation will be used for "public accountability and investigative journalism" projects. Representatives for MacFarlane told NBC he did not have a statement on his decision to donate to NPR. In a tweet, MacFarlane said Carlson’s comments "make me embarrassed to work for this company." MacFarlane's donation comes at a time when several stars associated with 21st Century Fox expressed frustration with the network’s coverage of President Donald Trump, according to NBC News.

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