News Roundup: Here's What You Missed

By Justine Quintana

1. New BIlls to Crack Down on Protests Across 18 States:

Republican lawmakers across 18 states are introducing bills that would increase punishments for blocking highways, ban the use of masks during protests, indemnify drivers who strike protesters with their cars and, in at least once case, seize the assets of people involved in protests that later turn violent. In response to recent protests over the years, some argue it is a way to counter "paid" or "professional" protesters who show up only to disrupt and aggregate chaotic situations. While others say it is a means for public safety. No laws have been passed just yet. For state-by-state legislation follow the story below.
- Source: The Washington Post


2. Gov. Jerry Brown to Ask For $437 Million in Flood And Emergency Relief:

Gov. Brown's proposal comes after a slew of storms affecting Northern California, saying it is a down payment to a large and costly problem. His plan would speed up flood control that has been in the works from five years down to two years. The governor’s proposal seeks approval from the Legislature to accelerate $387 million of borrowing authorized by Proposition One, a $7.1-billion water bond approved by voters in 2014. The proposal will focus on enhanced protection in areas with significant flood risk. An additional $50 million would be spent on emergency preparedness programs.
- Source: The Los Angeles Times


3. California Coastal Highway 1 Temporarily Closed in Several Places After Recent Storms:

California's coastal Highway 1 is closed between Ragged Point and Caramel after recent storms. One spot in particular may keep spring-breakers from taking a road trip to the area as it may be shut down for months. Heavy rains caused the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge in Big Sur to crack and start sinking into the shifting mountainside, officials said. The bridge, which is said to be beyond repair, closed on Feb. 15 to vehicles and pedestrians. As of late Thursday, rock and mud slides had shut down traffic in both directions south of the town of Gorda, the Ragged Point Inn and on a stretch of road between Salmon and Mud creeks. Some residents are being helicoptered out with the possibility of some being able to drive out if conditions allow it. Once the weather clears, travelers will be able to drive the road up until the bridge.
- Source: The Los Angeles Times


4. Kansas City Shooting:

Two Indian men and one bystander were shot Wednesday night by a man who yelled "get out of my country" before open firing at a bar in Olathe, Kansas City. Srinivas Kuchibhotla, 32, one of the victims, died at the hospital. His friend, Alok Madasani, 32, was released from the hospital Thursday night. Ian Grillot, 24, was also shot as he tried to intervene. He survived his wounds. Adam W. Purinton, 51, is the accused shooter. He was arrested for first degree murder about a day after the incident took place. It is being under investigation as a hate crime.
- Source: The Washington Post


5. Anti-Immigrant Protests Erupt in South Africa's Capital:

Days after xenophobic attacks and looting took place in Pretoria and surrounding areas, South African residents took to the streets in an anti-immigrant protest. Many blame Herman Mashaba, the mayor of nearby Johannesburg, after his remarks calling immigrants criminals that should be targeted. These types of attacks are nothing new and Mashaba is not the first leader to cast such remarks. Just last year, King Goodwill Zwelithini, the chief of the Zulu people, told his followers that foreigners should "pack their bags and go home." This sparked similar attacks in which several were killed and many  fled the country.
- Source: CNN