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Virginia First Lady Offered Cotton to African-American Students During Mansion Tour

Northam’s wife may be prone to the same racial gaffes as her husband.

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The wife of beleaguered Virginia Governor Ralph Northam is being accused of racial insensitivity for handing cotton to African-American students during tours of the Governor’s mansion, asking them to imagine picking the substance as slaves.

A state employee alleges that Pam Northam handed cotton to her daughter as well as another African-American eighth grader during a school field trip to the Governor’s mansion. Mrs. Northam apparently thought handing a ball of cotton to the students would be an appropriate lesson on the history of slavery in Virginia.

Leah Dozier Walker, the mother of the student who was offered cotton by Pam Northam, suggested the incident was indicative of a lack of reflection over racial insensitivity on the part of the Northams.

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The actions of Mrs. Northam, just last week, do not lead me to believe that this Governor’s office has taken seriously the harm and hurt they have caused African Americans in Virginia or that they are deserving of our forgiveness.

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Virginia’s First Lady has been present throughout her husband’s blackface and KKK college yearbook scandal. She doused a suggestion to “moonwalk” from the beleaguered governor during a press conference in which he attempted to explain away his yearbook controversy. While she may have saved him serious embarrassment in preventing him from moonwalking at a press conference in which he sought to answer racism allegations, she may have been less politically suave in her decision to engage in racially insensitive behavior that many are comparing to her husband’s.

Northam appears obstinate in his desire to remain in office, despite widespread calls from parties such as the NAACP and Virginia state legislators for him to resign.

States

Gray Wolves Spotted in Central California for the First Time in a Century

Wolves are traveling from Oregon to Central California.

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A gray wolf (canis lupus) has been observed in counties of California’s Sierra Nevada mountain range, with the animal returning to territory from which it’s been absent from for nearly a century. The GPS-tracked wolf, designated OR-93, has traveled south from Oregon, passing through Modoc County and Alpine County. Most recently, the wolf entered Mono County.

The journey of the young male wolf represents new territorial range from the species. Biologists believe it’s possible the wolf’s presence could result in the formation of new wolf packs in the Sierra Nevada region, should the animal prove successful in returning to the area with a mate. The wolf broke off from Oregon’s White River Pack southeast of Mt. Hood sometime within the past few months. Previously, wolves that ventured into California from Oregon didn’t travel south of Lake Tahoe, the single largest alpine lake in North America, that straddles the California-Nevada border.

OR-93’s historic trek so far south into California’s central Sierra Nevada is thrilling news for wolf recovery throughout the West,” said Pamela Flick, director of the California preservation group Defenders of Wildlife. “OR-93 also importantly brings the potential for increased genetic diversity to our state.

Wolves were dealt with as pestilence during the American settlement of the western United States, and the animals still pose a threat to the livestock of ranchers to this day. The animals were eliminated from the state of California entirely sometime in the 1920’s, and a gray wolf was seen in California for the first time in almost a century in 2011.

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Wolf attacks on humans are extremely rare, although if the population is restored in Eastern California, farmers and ranchers will have to find deterrents for threats to their livestock. The presence of wolves in the region can serve as a benefit to the local ecosystem, assisting to keep the population levels of destructive animals in check.


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