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Joe Biden urges Americans to choose hope over fear in accepting Democratic nomination for president. Watch full speech



Joe Biden formally accepted the nomination of his party Thursday night, arguing that America will choose hope over fear, facts over fiction and fairness over privilege as he cast President Donald Trump as a failed leader who has shirked responsibility while stoking hate and division.
The former vice president said the United States has faced an unprecedented “perfect storm” of four simultaneous crises: the worst pandemic in 100 years, the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, the most compelling call for racial justice since the Civil Rights Era and the climate crisis.


Video courtesy C-SPAN

“Our current President has failed in his most basic duty to the nation. He has failed to protect us, he has failed to protect America,” Biden said.
“This is not a partisan moment. This must be an American moment,” he said, looking directly into the camera and telling voters he was running to reclaim the country’s character at a time of darkness. “This campaign isn’t just about winning votes, it is about winning the heart and, yes, the soul of America.”
Though politicians often argue that each election is the most important, this year is different, he said: “We know in our bones, this one is more consequential.”
While many speakers throughout the night told stories about Biden’s life and his political career to highlight his empathy and decency — and make the affirmative case for electing him — Biden forcefully outlined how he would handle the job differently than Trump. He condemned the President for failing to devise a plan to get the coronavirus under control, while arguing that the incumbent wasted precious time focusing on his own grievances and political desires instead of trying to save lives.
“The President keeps telling us the virus is going to disappear. He keeps waiting for a miracle,” Biden said. “Well, I have news for him: no miracle is coming. We lead the world in confirmed cases. We lead the world in deaths. Our economy is in tatters, with Black, Latino, Asian American and Native American communities bearing the brunt of it.”
“And after all this time, the President still does not have a plan,” Biden continued. “Well, I do.”
The speech marked the high point of a decorated career in politics that has seen the Scranton, Pennsylvania, native rise to the highest levels of government despite a lifetime of family tragedy. Biden had run for president twice before, never going far in those runs and the third try seemed destined to end the same way until a turning point win in South Carolina in late February.
The former vice president then swept through the Super Tuesday states and clinched the nomination, culminating in a four-day virtual celebration that aimed to promote him as an empathetic leader who would be guided by science as the nation is gripped by the greatest crisis it has confronted in generations.
In a poignant moment, Biden’s three children introduced their father’s keynote speech in a video. The former vice president’s son Beau, who died of brain cancer five years ago at the age of 46, was portrayed in video clips from previous speeches about his father. Biden strongly pushed for such an introduction, which also featured his son Hunter and daughter Ashley.
The former vice president decided after much soul searching not to pursue a presidential campaign in 2016, saying the window for a run had closed while he was mourning Beau.
“Take it away, Beau,” Ashley Biden said, as the video cut to Beau Biden giving a speech about his father at a previous convention.
The final night of the convention featured average Americans whose lives have been touched by the former vice president, from military families to 13-year-old Brayden Harrington, who approached Biden in New Hampshire asking him to help coach him through overcoming his stutter, as Biden did in his own youth by reciting poetry in the mirror and later by marking his speeches as a reminder not to rush through his remarks.
“I’m just a regular kid, and in a short amount of time, Joe Biden made me feel more confident about something that’s bothered me my whole life,” Harrington said. “Joe Biden cared. Imagine what he could do for all of us. Kids like me are counting on you to elect someone we can all look up to. Someone who cares. Someone who will make our country and the world feel better. We’re counting on you to elect Joe Bide.”
The evening opened with a series of videos giving testimony to Biden’s humanity. One woman, Amanda Litman — executive director of Run For Something, a progressive organization — told how the former vice president consoled her family when a close relative was gravely ill with colon cancer.
She then used the experience to suggest how Biden could bring such empathy to bear in a nation in the grip of a pandemic that has already killed more than 170,000 people.
“Our entire country is grieving. We are all going through trauma. Our next President needs to be the one helping us heal,” she said.
The tributes to Biden from current and former members of the military included speeches from former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who ran against the former Delaware senator for the 2020 presidential nomination, and Illinois Sen. Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran and Purple Heart recipient who Biden considered during his vice presidential selection process.
Duckworth spoke about the qualities needed in a commander in chief and the attention they must pay to the needs of military spouses, noting how her own husband rushed to the hospital to take care of her after she was injured when a rocket-propelled grenade tore through the helicopter she had been flying over Iraq in 2004.
“Military service doesn’t just take courage and sacrifice from those in uniform — they’re required from their families, too,” Duckworth said. “Joe Biden understands those sacrifices because he has made them himself. When his son Beau enlisted in the Army and deployed to Iraq, that burden was shouldered by his family as well.”
She said US service members deserve a leader who would “actually honor their sacrifices” and that they don’t have that in their current commander in chief, because Trump “is either unwilling or incapable of doing so.”
When Buttigieg, who was a lieutenant in the US Navy Reserves, endorsed Biden earlier this year, the former vice president took the microphone to invoke his late son, an Iraq War veteran who Biden refers to as his “soul.”
“I don’t think I’ve ever done this before, but he reminds me of my son, Beau,” Biden said, with Buttigieg looking on. “I know that may not mean much to most people, but to me, it’s the highest compliment I can give any man or woman.”
On Thursday night, Buttigieg also spoke about his military service and his experience as a gay man in America watching how the country has shifted on LGBTQ rights.
“Joe Biden is right: this is a contest for the soul of the nation. And to me, that contest is not between good Americans and evil Americans. It’s the struggle to call out what is good in every American,” Buttigieg said.
“It’s up to us. Will America be a place where faith is about healing and not exclusion? Can we become a country that lives up to the truth that Black lives matter? Will we handle questions of science and medicine by turning to scientists and doctors? Will we see to it that no one who works full time can live in poverty?” he said.
“I trust Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to guide us toward that better future, because I have seen — up close — their empathy, and their capacity — just as I’ve seen America’s capacity to move toward inclusion.”

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Girl dies after her teacher flogged her for getting two math questions wrong



A schoolgirl has died after allegedly being beaten by her teacher for failing to answer two maths questions correctly.

The 10-year-old girl, identified by her surname Zhang, was a student at a primary school in the city of Guangyuan, central China.

According to the Xinhua News Agency, the teacher, identified by the surname Wang, beat the girl on September 10.

Zhang was beaten on her palms four times and ordered to kneel for four minutes.


Girl dies after her teacher flogged her for getting two math questions wrong


Feeling dizzy, she was sent to the hospital by her grandmother and the teacher and was pronounced dead later that day at 3.30 pm.

She also had her ears pulled and her head beaten.

Medical experts found no wounds and an investigation into her death is underway.

The Cangxi county government has set up a task force and the teacher has been suspended from work, along with the school’s principal.

The victim’s grandmother told local media that she had a twin sister who was in the same class. She said Zhang looked close to fainting during the beating.

The grandmother also mentioned that Zhang was scared of her maths teacher, who she claimed often gave corporal punishment to students.

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Former Mali dictator Moussa Traore laid to rest



Mali held a state funeral for ex-dictator Moussa Traore on Friday, attended by the head of the ruling military junta and other former leaders of the Sahel state.

Traore, who ruled Mali for 22 years before being deposed in a 1991 coup, died at age 83 in the capital Bamako on September 15.

The former autocrat was buried at a Bamako military camp on Friday, where a funeral band played at the arrival of his coffin, which was draped in the Malian flag.

Soldiers dressed in full regalia stood at attention, according to AFP journalists, while two planes performed a flypast overhead.

As a young lieutenant in 1968, Traore was the main instigator of a coup that overthrew Modibo Keita, the country’s first president after independence from France in 1960.

Traore became president the following year and ruled with an iron fist, before he himself was ousted in a military coup in 1991.

In recent years, the ex-dictator was increasingly seen as an elder statesman in the notoriously unstable country, with politicians soliciting his advice.

In attendance on Friday was the head of Mali’s ruling military junta Colonel Assimi Goita, part of a group of young officers who launched a coup ousting president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita on August 18.

Former President Amadou Toumani Toure — who deposed Traore in the 1991 coup — was also among the mourners, alongside other ex-leaders.

Russian diplomats attended the ceremony on Friday, according to AFP journalists, but no French or European Union diplomats were present.

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US to ban TikTok downloads, WeChat use from Sunday



The United States on Friday ordered a ban on downloads of popular Chinese-owned video app TikTok and use of the messaging and payment platform WeChat, saying they threaten national security.

The move, to be implemented Sunday, comes amid rising US-China tensions and efforts by the Trump administration to engineering a sale of TikTok to American investors.

“The Chinese Communist Party has demonstrated the means and motives to use these apps to threaten the national security, foreign policy, and the economy of the US,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a statement.

The initiative would ban WeChat, an app with massive use among Chinese speakers, and TikTok from the online marketplaces operated by Apple and Google.

But while WeChat will effectively be shut down from Sunday in the US, existing TikTok user will be able to continue using the app until November 12 — when it would also face a full ban on its US operations.

But the Commerce Department said if national security concerns over TikTok were resolved before then, the order may be lifted.

TikTok’s brand of brief, quirky videos made on users’ cellphones has become hugely popular, especially among young people.

The plan follows through on a threat by President Donald Trump, who has claimed Chinese tech operations may be used for spying, and it ramps up the pressure on TikTok parent ByteDance to conclude a deal to sell all or part of TikTok to allay US security concerns.

A deal which appeared to be taking shape would allow Silicon Valley giant Oracle to become the tech partner for TikTok, but some US lawmakers have objected to allowing ByteDance to keep a stake.

The ban on WeChat, owned by Chinese giant Tencent, has the potential for disrupting the widely used social media and financial application.

US officials said in a recent court filing they would not target those using WeChat for ordinary personal.

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