By Michael Corkery, Lauren Hirsch, Brooks Barnes and Kellen Browning
Some of the nation’s largest employers, for months reluctant to wade into the fraught issue of whether COVID-19 vaccinations should be mandatory for workers, have in recent days been compelled to act as infections have surged again.
On Tuesday, Tyson Foods told its 120,000 workers in offices, slaughterhouses and poultry plants across the country that they would need to be vaccinated by Nov. 1 as a “condition of employment.” And Microsoft, which employs roughly 100,000 people in the U.S., …
By Jack Ewing
OBER-RAMSTADT, Germany — On a highway south of Frankfurt recently, Thomas Schmieder maneuvered his Scania tractor-trailer and its load of house paint into the far right lane. Then he flicked a switch you won’t find on most truck dashboards.
Outside the cab a contraption started to unfold from the roof, looking like a clothes-drying rack with an upside-down sled welded to the top. As Schmieder continued driving, a video display showed the metal skids rising up and pushing gently against wires running overhead.
The cab became very quiet as the diesel engine cut out and electric motors…
By Hannah Beech
TOKYO — Outside the Olympic bubble is a city that does not want us.
Like many of the tens of thousands of people visiting Tokyo for the Games, I am in a permeable cocoon that is supposed to keep me separate from the city’s residents. Those people include my mother.
Shuffling from table tennis to archery to taekwondo, from diving to boxing to weight lifting, I hear snippets of Tokyo’s summer soundtrack: the shrill of cicadas, the clomp of kids in cleats heading home from soccer, the trill of a wind chime not quite stilled in the…
By Matt Flegenheimer
The governor placed his finger on the back of the trooper’s neck, standing behind her in an elevator at his Manhattan office, tracing the path of her spine with a two-word narration: “Hey, you.”
Sometimes, he asked questions — Why didn’t she wear a dress? Why pursue marriage when “your sex drive goes down” afterward? Could he kiss her? — and sometimes, he made statements: He remarked that his ideal girlfriend could “handle pain.” He said that the trooper, in her late 20s, was “too old” for him. He directed her to say nothing of their conversations.
By Kashmir Hill
Mena Yousif wore dark clothing to the protest, with white sneakers and a blue hijab that she could pull over her face, perfect gear during a pandemic. Jose Felan, stocky and tall, wore a baseball cap and a gray T-shirt that showed off a distinctive tattoo on his forearm: “Mena,” with a crown above the “a.”
The couple had driven an hour north from Rochester to Minneapolis to join a crowd down the street from the state Capitol. It was three days after George Floyd had been killed by a white police officer; the couple was part…
By James Poniewozik
Could David Brent get hired today?
Ricky Gervais, who awkwardly danced onto TV as Brent in the groundbreaking comedy “The Office” in 2001, was recently interviewed about his and Stephen Merchant’s creation. “Now it would be canceled,” he said, meaning a cultural rather than commercial verdict. “I’m looking forward to when they pick out one thing and try to cancel it.”
Gervais later wrote on Twitter that his remarks were “clearly a joke.” I believe the “joke” part. The “clearly” is debatable, given Gervais’ long history of posturing that his humor is too real for the thought…
By Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Michael D. Shear
WASHINGTON — A week of public health reversals from the White House and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has left Americans with pandemic whiplash, sowing confusion about coronavirus vaccines and mask-wearing as the delta variant upends what people thought they knew about how to stay safe.
Vaccines remain effective and highly protective against hospitalization and death, even among those infected with the extremely contagious delta variant. Mask-wearing prevents transmission of the virus to those most at risk.
But the crisis President Joe Biden once thought he had under control is…
By Taylor Lorenz
LOS ANGELES — Six years ago, Lindsey Lee Lugrin, a budding social media creator and model, was given the chance to be featured in a Marc by Marc Jacobs ad campaign. She was paid $1,000.
Lugrin was thrilled. But after seeing her face plastered on billboards and in ads across the internet, she realized she had undervalued herself.
By John Herrman
In early July, when England’s soccer team lost the European Championship final to Italy on its home turf, the crushing defeat was followed by a torrent of racist abuse on social media directed at the team’s Black players. The messages — part of an ongoing pattern of social media bigotry — were condemned by politicians, platforms, teammates and fans.
They were also blamed, in part, on a familiar figure: the masked troll. He has been popping up a lot lately. Depending who you are, he may be the source of all political disinformation; one of an army…
By Taylor Lorenz
LOS ANGELES — Ellie Zeiler, 17, a TikTok creator with over 10 million followers, received an email in June from Village Marketing, an influencer marketing agency. It said it was reaching out on behalf of another party: the White House.
Would Zeiler, a high school senior who usually posts short fashion and lifestyle videos, be willing, the agency wondered, to participate in a White House-backed campaign encouraging her audience to get vaccinated against the coronavirus?
“There is a massive need to grow awareness within the 12–18 age range,” Village Marketing wrote to Zeiler’s business email. …
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