Trump, Unbound – The New York Times

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President Trump breaks so many of the normal rules of politics that it can sometimes be hard to know when his tweets and comments are truly newsworthy. Even by his standards, though, the past several days have stood out. Consider:

  • Trump said on Monday that a plane “almost completely loaded with thugs” wearing “dark uniforms” had been headed to the Republican National Convention to do “big damage.” The claim is similar to a baseless conspiracy theory that spread online over the summer, well before the convention.

  • He has declined to condemn the killings of two protesters in Kenosha, Wis. He instead defended the 17-year-old charged in the shootings — a Trump supporter named Kyle Rittenhouse — saying he was acting in self-defense. Trump also promoted a Twitter post that called Rittenhouse “a good example of why I decided to vote for Trump.”

  • He defended violence committed by his supporters in Portland, Ore., who fired paintballs and pepper spray at Black Lives Matter protesters.

  • He compared the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha to missing “a three-foot putt” in a golf tournament.

  • He claimed that “people that you’ve never heard of” and “people that are in the dark shadows” are controlling Joe Biden.

  • He claimed Democrats were trying to “destroy” suburbs with “low-income housing, and with that comes a lot of other problems, including crime.” He added that Cory Booker — one of the highest-profile Black Democrats — would be “in charge of it.”

  • He predicted that the stock market would crash if Biden won.

  • He said that Biden, at the Democratic National Convention, “didn’t even discuss law enforcement, the police. Those words weren’t mentioned.” In fact, Biden held a discussion at the convention on policing, with a police chief.

  • Trump claimed that he “took control of” the situation in Kenosha by sending in the National Guard. In fact, Wisconsin’s governor, not the president, sent the National Guard.

  • He retweeted messages asserting that the pandemic’s death toll was overstated. Evidence indicates the opposite is true.

  • He said that protests against police brutality were actually a secret “coup attempt” by anarchists “trying to take down the President.”

Biden has taken a very different approach to the unrest in Kenosha, Portland and elsewhere. He has told no apparent untruths, and he has criticized violence from both the political left and right — even though many liberals, whose votes Biden needs, are uncomfortable with any criticism of people on their side of the debate.

G.O.P. reaction. The Times tried to reach about a dozen leading congressional Republicans and ask for their reaction to Trump’s claims. “None cared to comment,” Mark Leibovich writes. Senator Mitt Romney offered one of the few public responses, calling the president’s comments “simply jaw-dropping.”

Russia adds to the misinformation. A group backed by the Kremlin is again trying to meddle in the U.S. presidential election and push voters toward Trump, Facebook and Twitter said yesterday.

President Trump traveled to Kenosha, Wis., yesterday to offer support for law enforcement and to tour shops damaged by rioting. During the visit, Trump did not mention the name of Jacob Blake, an unarmed Black man shot by the police last week, nor did the president speak with his family.

On the corner where Blake was shot, family members and activists held a festival to promote community healing. “We know why Trump is here in Kenosha today,” Tanya McLean, an organizer, told hundreds of people who gathered. “He is here to sow chaos and fear. We reject these attempts to divide us.”

Among New York’s safety protocols: Most kids will go to school between one and three days a week; everyone will wear masks all day; and windows will remain open, even on cold and rainy days.

Photos: Students around the world are returning to classrooms this week.

In other virus developments:

College students returning to campuses around the country face a dilemma: to snitch or not to snitch?

Some students are feeling pressure to tell university administrators if they see their classmates breaking rules intended to limit the spread of the coronavirus. A few schools, including Colgate and the University of Colorado Boulder, have encouraged students to inform on their peers.

Snitching is the price of keeping campuses safe, some say. “I’m not going to be having my life put at risk because people decided to be selfish,” one N.Y.U. graduate student told The Times’s Troy Closson. “These rules are for the good of everyone here.”

Others say that encouraging students to snitch puts them in an impossible situation — and that administrators who have reopened campuses too quickly are trying to pass the blame for unworkable rules onto students.

“Young partygoers have become the latest scapegoat for America’s pandemic woes,” Julia Marcus and Jessica Gold wrote in an Atlantic article this summer. Shaming or punishing students could dissuade them from disclosing symptoms or positive test results, they argue, which could hamper administrators’ response to outbreaks.

Make the most of fresh summer produce with this cherry-almond granola crisp. Eat it for breakfast or for dessert, or snack on it throughout the day. The caramelized clusters of almonds and oats temper the fruit’s sweetness.

“Verzuz,” a series in which hip-hop and R&B stars battle hit for hit on Instagram Live, has quickly transformed from an entertaining novelty born from the pandemic into appointment viewing and a cultural phenomenon on social media.

In a highly anticipated battle on Monday, the R&B singers Brandy and Monica squared off for nearly three hours, breaking the show’s record with more than 1.2 million viewers, according to The Los Angeles Times. Michelle Obama, Snoop Dogg and Queen Latifah all chimed in through the comments section, and there was a surprise cameo from Senator Kamala Harris, reminding viewers to vote.

If you’ve ever scrolled through Instagram or glanced upon the visage of Kim Kardashian West, you’ve probably seen the work of Mario Dedivanovic. The signature look that the makeup artist first gave Kardashian 12 years ago — think dewy highlighter and a face sculpted with lots of contouring — is still influential today.

Dedivanovic got his start working at Sephora as a teenager, eventually landing a gig doing touch-ups for the on-air hosts at Fox News. “The first time he did my makeup, people thought I’d had a nose job,” one host said.

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