Trump sticks to the message in his first State of the Union
The whole thing took about an hour and a half. Many weren't sure if Donald Trump would stay on script or adopt the off-the-cuff style we’ve seen at his rallies. But he stuck close to the teleprompter, as he praised rolling back regulations and slammed terrorists.
One significant announcement: Trump said he was ordering the Pentagon to keep the Guantanamo Bay detention facility open. It was revealed that Trump signed an executive order earlier in the day reversing Obama's 2009 order calling for the facility’s closure.
See the rest of the speech highlights here.
The president who read the State of the Union on teleprompter is not the same as the president who sits in the Oval Office. Yes, the speech is supposed to serve as a guide to the president’s priorities, but as Tarini Parti writes, by now members of both parties know “not to hold out for a ‘pivot’ to a more controlled Trump who's never going to come.”
Poland and Israel are fighting about the Holocaust
Last week, Poland’s parliament passed a bill declaring it illegal to blame Poland for the Holocaust and forbidding calling Auschwitz and other Nazi facilities “Polish death camps.” Many Poles are infuriated when Nazi camps are referred to as “Polish,” because they were built and run by Germany in occupied Polish territory. The bill, which still has to pass Poland’s upper chambers, is a part of a rolling back of what Polish nationalists see as a “pedagogy of shame,” designed to make Poles feel bad about their history.
In response, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “We will under no circumstances accept any attempt to rewrite history.” Many historians and Jewish groups inside Poland also denounced the bill — one group wrote the legislation “would constitute an unprecedented (and unknown in a democratic system) intrusion into the debate about the Polish history.”
Richard Spencer: The prominent white nationalist says he couldn’t find a lawyer to defend him against a lawsuit seeking to hold him, among others, responsible for the violence last August in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Mark Salling: The former Glee star was found dead while awaiting sentencing on child porn charges. Salling was reportedly found hanging in a riverbed area near Los Angeles. He was to be sentenced in March.
Super blue blood moon: It’s happening this morning, and it’s best viewed from the western half of the US (sorry, East Coast). A supermoon is when the moon is as close as possible to Earth; a blue moon is when there are two full moons in one month; a blood moon is when there’s a lunar eclipse. This morning: all three!
Looking into it: Remember when Apple admitted that the iPhone slowed down its processor when it sensed a decayed battery? The US Department of Justice has begun the first stages of an inquiry into Apple's decision to release software updates that hinder older models.
Hawaii alert: The employee who sent the false missile alert to Hawaii thought a drill was the real thing. After sending the alert, he “froze” and appeared “confused,” officials said. An investigation of the incident found the employee was directed to send a cancel message, but “just sat there and didn't respond.” He has since been fired from the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency.
Silicon Valley is learning to play humble, but Facebook is not interested
In Davos, tech companies were playing a different tune this year: They wanted to talk about empathy, human rights, kids — basically anything but the growing tech backlash. Not Facebook, though: The company showed up ready to talk about the power of its algorithms over human judgment and wholly committed to continued, rolling disruption. Ben Smith looked at Facebook’s defiant optimism and how it stands out from the pack.
Canadian cops raided a pot shop, ate some edibles, and freaked out
Two Toronto police officers apparently got so high that they panicked, called for help, then ran away from the colleagues who responded to the distress call. The officers were on the clock when they reportedly ate some edibles they pocketed after a raid. When they didn't feel the effects right away, they ate a bunch more.
After freaking out, they radioed for backup. When help arrived, one ran and climbed a tree. The other slipped on ice and seriously injured his head.
Well. It’s only Wednesday.
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Elamin Abdelmahmoud is a Social Media Editor for BuzzFeed and is based in Toronto
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