Tribune News Service
News Budget for papers of Sunday, January 12, 2020
Updated at 9 p.m. EST (0200 UTC).
These stories are recommended for weekend release, except where embargoes are noted. Please make sure you are adhering to embargoes on our stories in both your print and online operations.
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^Haitians gained protections to stay in the US after a devastating quake. A decade later, Trump wants that to end<
HAITIANS-TPS:LA — Almost every day, it seems, a parishioner comes to Father Reginald Jean-Mary with the same plea: Pray for us, we're scared. We can't go back, not now.
They live in fear of a forced return to Haiti, a country where they were born and that they love, but one that's been paralyzed by poverty, violent protests and a debilitating cholera epidemic.
They fear even more for their American-born children, who, unlike them, would be eligible to remain in the only country they've ever known. For many Haitian immigrants, the idea of uprooting preteens to live for the first time in a deeply impoverished country seems out of the question.
1600 (with trims) by Kurtis Lee in Miami. MOVED
^How do you conduct an impeachment trial? Chief Justice John Roberts will have to figure that out<
IMPEACHMENT-ROBERTS:LA — Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. will almost certainly try to keep a low profile in the upcoming impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
But given the lack of a bipartisan agreement in the Senate, Roberts may find himself nevertheless called upon to weigh in on the most difficult questions, including whether witnesses will testify.
Most legal experts expect Roberts will have a largely ceremonial role rather than a pivotal one in shaping the trial. Neither the Constitution nor historic precedents make clear how the "presiding officer" should conduct an impeachment trial.
1400 by David G. Savage in Washington. MOVED
^In a church of their own, Latino atheists fear no God. But Mom? That's another matter<
RELIG-LATINO-ATHEISTS:LA — Once a month, a very particular Sunday service unfolds on a patio outside a Starbucks in El Monte. When jets fly overhead, members of the congregation have to shout across the table at one another.
Some days, there's a small crowd, and the conversation lasts for hours. On other days, Arlene Rios waits alone.
It's not easy being an atheist raised in a devoutly Catholic culture. But here in the San Gabriel Valley, you don't have to doubt God's existence all alone. You can head to the monthly meetup of secular Latinos and share a latte with Rios.
1750 (with trims) by Brittny Mejia in Los Angeles. MOVED
^In a lifetime on the border, this agent has seen it transform<
BORDERPATROL-AGENT:SD — Fresh out of the academy yet still very much an agent-in-training, Chancy Arnold was finally being given a little range.
He and his partner were told to drive on the border road east, familiarize themselves with the rolling hills and unmarked trails that would become their new office.
As they approached the base of Otay Mountain in San Diego County, they came upon a man lying face down in the dirt. About 50 yards to the south, a flimsy barbed wire fence denoted the U.S.-Mexico border.
Strange, Arnold thought, does he really think he's hiding from us?
The agents yelled at the man: "Get up, we can see you!"
He remained still.
Closer inspection revealed the grisly truth: Someone had driven the migrant through the border, ordered him to the ground and put a bullet in the back of his head.
That was 1985, and Arnold is now nearing 35 years with the agency, making him the longest-serving Border Patrol agent in the nation.
2100 by Kristina Davis in San Diego. MOVED
^'We used to be there': The lost history and legacy of America's Indian School<
VA-INDIANSCHOOL:NN — Several years ago as debate raged over whether two feathers stuck in the College of William & Mary logo was racist, anthropologist Danielle Moretti-Langholtz began getting phone calls from tribes out West.
But the callers weren't asking about the logo — they were asking about the Indian school that hasn't existed at the college for more than 200 years.
"We used to be there," the callers said. "Can we come back?"
For Moretti-Langholtz, director of the college's American Indian Resource Center, the requests were puzzling. The Brafferton Indian School stopped taking students in 1779. Today, even the institutional memory of that school is murky. The building is still there. There's a marker.
She was compelled to learn more.
So Moretti-Langholtz and Buck Woodard, then director of the American Indian Initiative at Colonial Williamsburg, set out on a painstaking odyssey over more than a decade to flesh out the complex story of the Indian school, the Native boys who attended and what became of them.
3000 by Tamara Dietrich in Williamsburg, Va. MOVED
^BEST OF NEWSFEATURES<
These stories moved earlier in the week and are suitable for weekend publication.
^Anguished, armed and impulsive: A deadly mix fuels rising teen suicides<
HEALTH-TEENSUICIDE:FL — On a spring morning near Orlando, a 17-year-old typed "I love you guys" on her Instagram page. Struggling with depression, distraught over a breakup, and fighting back tears, she walked out of class and into the empty high school auditorium. She pulled her grandfather's Glock 45 from her small brown purse and killed herself.
Roughly twice a week in Florida, a child or teenager takes their life. Nearly half of the time they use guns, most often belonging to a family member.
Such heartbreaking decisions by troubled young people have fueled a 50% increase in youth suicides in Florida during the last decade.
3150 by Cindy Krischer Goodman in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. MOVED
^Voting rights restoration gives felons a voice in more states<
^VOTINGRIGHTS-FELONS:SH—<A mistake Rynn Young made decades ago, when he was just a teenager, cost him the right to vote.
Twenty-one years after his drug possession conviction, he got his ballot back when newly elected Democratic Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear signed an executive order last month restoring voting rights to nonviolent felons after release.
"It's been a very long time coming," Young said at the signing ceremony in Frankfort, Ky., surrounded by civil rights leaders. "I've never had the right to vote. My words have always fallen on deaf ears I appreciate the opportunity for a second chance, just to be heard."
1550 by Matt Vasilogambros. MOVED
^They came to America after the US irradiated their islands. Now they face an uncertain future<
MARSHALL-ISLANDS-SPOKANE:LA — They come from a low-lying Pacific island nation synonymous with U.S. nuclear weapons testing during the Cold War. In part because of that troubled history, one-third of the Marshall Islands' population — roughly 27,000 and growing — now reside in the United States, where their future is uncertain.
Under a 1986 bilateral agreement, the Marshallese people were permitted to enter the United States as "legal non-immigrants" in return for the U.S. military continuing to operate a weapons testing base in the Marshalls. Many islanders found jobs in meat processing plants in Arkansas, canneries in Oregon and various service industries in Washington state, including in Spokane, where church groups and family helped build a community providing newcomers with employment, homes, education and healthcare.
Now, amid tensions caused by lingering radiation and sea-level rise in the Marshall Islands, it is uncertain the two countries will renew a compact that has tied them together for 33 years.
1500 by Susanne Rust in Spokane, Wash. MOVED
^Kansas farmers die by suicide at an 'alarming' rate. The state steps in to help them cope<
KAN-FARM-SUICIDE:KC — He fought it as long as he could. Mick Rausch didn't know what was wrong until he finally hit a wall he could no longer climb on his own.
It was 10 years ago. His brother — younger by just a year and three days — had recently died. A late-spring frost damaged his wheat.
He was depressed. His wife knew it. He didn't. He thought surely there was something wrong with her.
"And finally it escalated," said the 65-year-old retired dairyman who lives in Sedgwick County west of Wichita.
One day he was out in the shed checking the drills used to sow the wheat when he lay down and fell asleep right under them, for three hours. He went back to the house and told his wife that she was right. "There's something wrong. We need to get help," he said.
1750 by Lisa Gutierrez in Kansas City, Mo. MOVED
^Human-caused ignitions spark California's worst wildfires but get little state focus<
CALIF-WILDFIRES:LA — It could have been another bad wildfire year in California. A bountiful summer crop of quick-to-burn dead grass carpeted the hillsides. Autumn was warm and dry. A record-breaking stretch of fire weather hit the Bay Area in October.
But it wasn't. California wildfires charred about 270,000 acres in 2019, the smallest number since 2011. The three fatalities and roughly 735 burned structures were a fraction of the catastrophic losses of the previous two fire seasons.
The lower-than-expected toll followed an unusually wet spring and big snowpack, which slowed the start of the fire season. The installation of backcountry fire cameras gave firefighting crews early notice of ignitions. When flames approached, evacuation orders were swift and sweeping.
But most critically, widespread preventive power shutdowns by the state's largest electric utility diminished the chances of human-related ignitions at critical times.
1850 (with trims) by Bettina Boxall in Los Angeles. MOVED
^Bat poop may give researchers clues about historical changes to climate, vegetation<
ENV-CLIMATE-GUANO:SL — Whether it's ice, lake-bottom mud, or cave stalactites and stalagmites, if something piles up and accumulates over time, it can tell scientists about past climate conditions or surrounding landscapes and how they've changed.
That's also true for big, old, slippery piles of bat poop, or guano, from Missouri caves. The material is the focus of an ongoing study by researchers from Washington University, the Missouri Botanical Garden and Virginia Tech.
It makes for a messy medium.
But the payout could be worth it. Where some might see a giant, brown, squishy heap of guano, researchers see what could amount to centuries or millennia of localized natural history records buried within generations of bat diets, layered on top of one another.
1050 (with trims) by Bryce Gray in St. Louis. MOVED
^Did you get a text from an unknown number? It might be a presidential candidate<
CAMPAIGNS-TEXTS:WA — If you're trying to avoid 2020 politics, you can screen your phone calls, delete your emails without reading them and avoid answering the door when a canvasser knocks. But campaigns have figured out one form of communication you are unlikely to ignore: texting.
Democrats and Republicans alike are spending millions and deploying thousands of staffers and volunteers focused on texting with committed and potential supporters in the 2020 election. Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign, an early adopter of the tactic, has already sent nearly nine times as many text messages to voters as it did during the entire 2016 primary.
1150 (with trims) by Emily Cadei in Washington. MOVED
^What is the future of Washington state's forests? Endangered marbled murrelet seabird caught in fight<
ENV-WASH-MURRELET:SE — Nobody's happy about the latest plans for Washington's forest lands.
Not the environmentalists. Not the timber industrialists, who predict lost jobs. Not the local officials, whose economies and budgets rely on timber revenue.
Caught in the hubbub is the marbled murrelet, a zippy, robin-sized bird that spends time in coastal waters and nests in Washington forests.
1300 by Evan Bush in Seattle. MOVED
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